CATS IN COMICS: Doraemon

In this series of posts I shall be featuring mini-profiles of cat characters I have enjoyed in comics. Each post will feature an image and short description of the character. I hope to have guest bloggers talking about their favourite cats in comics, too.

Cover of Doraemon manga issue 1.

The first cat in this series is Doraemon, the creation of Fujio Fujiki, the alias of two creators (mangaka) Motoo Akibo and Hiroshi Fujimoto working in collaboration. Doraemon is a blue, earless, male, magical, back from the future, robot cat that lost his ears to a hungry rat. And like most cats he is very good to his owner, the little boy Nobita. This cat has been designed in a seriously super-deformed style with a large round head that makes up practically half its body length. First published in Japan in 1970 it has been so successful it was developed into an animation series and franchise with much merchandise including postage stamps. Has the distinction of being made the first Anime Ambassador of Japan. Most recently a museum has opened in Kawasaki. This cat is now more than 40 years old although, as it is a cat that is back from the future, it has not yet been born, his birthday being just over a century away on 3rd September 2112. His popularity goes on and on, and taking a lead from the guitar I saw in a music shop in Ochanomizu, Tokyo, near Meiji University, I say “Rock on Doraemon!”

Doraemon guitar in Tokyo music shop. (Photo by Michael Hill a.k.a. Doctor Comics)

See who is front and centre on this Anime character post card!

See who is front and centre on this Anime character post card!

2012 UPDATE: On September 3rd 2012 Doraemon received an official residency certificate from Kawasaki city-100 years before his birth on September 3rd 2112.

Doraemon’s official residency certificate.

Doraemon on rails!

Cats In Comics series: Doraemon,   Felix,   Krazy Kat,   The Rabbi’s Cat,   Ranma’s Monster Neko.   Read the posts about my travels in Japan:   CATS IN COMICS: Doraemon   COFFEE TABLE third fix    Inking The Octopus   Tracking Tatsumi and Tezuka

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About Doctor Comics

Creator and former Director of the Master of Animation course at the University of Technology, Sydney, Michael Hill has a Master's degree in animation and a PhD in comics, prompting his introduction on ABC Radio as “Doctor Comics”. A member of the editorial boards of the International Journal of Comic Art, the Comics Grid Journal of Comics Scholarship and the Advisory Committee of the Q-Collection Comic Book Preservation Project, he has delivered public lectures on Anime and Manga and held academic directorships in Interdisciplinary Studies, Design and Visual Communication. Having donated his collection of research materials on Australian alternative comics to the National Library of Australia he is now active in the artistic domain and is creating his own comic Blotting Paper.

3 thoughts on “CATS IN COMICS: Doraemon

  1. oh doraemon! when i was growing up in malaysia and singapore he was known by his chinese name: xiao ding dang, and i was really more familiar with him as the packaging mascot for a brand of spherical puffed rice crackers coated in compound chocolate. the crackers were always stale. yum.

    do you know komaneko? http://youtu.be/fbhs5P-xa4U

  2. Name changes! I know Mickey Mouse was known as Topolino in Italy. Xiao ding dang eh? That one’s had an interesting cultural and phonetic shift. Glad you enjoyed the crackers. Why were they stale? Were they imported from Japan or was the character licensed to another country’s brand?
    Thanks for introducing me to Komaneko. I was impressed by the slow moving tempo and subdued soundtrack. Don’t often experience that in childrens animation. There were some nice touches there like when the cat’s eyes widen at the sight of having threaded the needle. Very careful and controlled animation.

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