National Museum of Singapore

To commemorate the 50th anniversary of Doraemon, the National Museum of Singapore is exhibiting popular gadgets and statues of the titular cat robot from the well-beloved manga created by Hiroshi Fujimoto and Motoo Abiko (pen name: Fujiko Fujio) from the land of the rising sun.

Doraemon’s Time-Travelling Adventures in Singapore is running from Oct 31st to Dec 27. Admission is free as most of the exhibits are located in areas with public access with the exception of Gadgets of the Past & Future, which requires a general admission ticket.

Since the first full story was published in 1970, Doraemon had hundreds of spinoffs in the form of manga, video games, movies, anime, musicals etc. Hence it difficult to estimate how many gadgets that Doraemon has in his 4D pocket although some estimates had put it at 4,500.

Unless you are fan, you might not be able to tell what the installations are about as most of them do not have a label. After all, they are just as what the National Museum has called them – photo spots.

Don’t worry, we are here to help you out.

First, the installations and exhibits can be found at three locations in the National Museum of Singapore.

1. Lawn where most of the installations are
2. Time Machine and Yellow Doraemon
3. Gadgets of the Past & Future

Here are the stories behind the iconic Doraemon gadgets and installations that you can find at the National Museum of Singapore:

Anywhere Door
Location: The lawn in front of the National Museum

Anywhere door

This cute looking pink door is one of the most used gadgets by Doraemon. As its name suggests, the door had teleported Doraemon, Nobita and their pals to anywhere possibly imaginable as long as they have been to the place in the past. It has a maximum distance of 100,000 lightyears although in some earlier stories the door was said to be able to travel to the end of the universe. 100,000 light years is 9.46073e+17 kilometers (that’s 17 zeroes after the decimal point)!

Time Machine
Location: In the walkway between the museum’s main entrance and the main gallery.

Time Machine

When Doraemon emerged from a drawer in Nobita’s room, the former had just used the time machine to travel from the future to meet the latter (the gadget was not visible). Since then, the time machine were a key plot device in many of Doraemon’s and Nobita’s adventures in Doraemon Long Stories, which are full, one-book tales usually also adapted into feature length animated films.

Essentially, Doraemon is a science fiction and time travel tale. While the original run had ended in 1996, the story has never officially concluded. An animated film, Stand by Me Doraemon 2 (watch the trailer here) is scheduled to be released in theatres in Japan on Nov 20, 2020, and guess what – the time machine will once again play a central plot device.

If you are a fan of Doraemon, you might want to check out this fan-made ending that movingly tie up the loose ends and major themes of the original story.  

Yellow Doraemon
Location: In the walkway between the museum’s main entrance and the main gallery.

You can find the Yellow Doraemon right next to the Time Machine

No, he is not a relative of Doraemon nor his doppelganger. Doraemon was originally yellow before turning blue; he had ears too. In 2112: The Birth of Doraemon, a prequel to the original manga, a robot mouse accidentally bit off parts of Doraemon’s ears. Subsequently Doraemon visited a hospital to repair his ears but a robot doctor removed them completely to fix the problem. After losing his ears, Doraemon wept uncontrollably after drinking a sorrow potion which he had mistaken for a cheer-up potion. His tears washed out his yellow paint and it faded into blue.

Copying Toast aka Memory Bread
Location: The lawn in front of the National Museum

Copying Toast – a must have for students

This is a must-have gadget prior to exams. It helped Nobita, who was in the beginning of the manga unwise and lazy, to memorize math answers overnight. The Copying Toast is a…oh well a loaf of plain bread that will help a person to remember whatever that is stamped on it when eaten. Consuming too much might not be a good idea as in the case of Nobita who had a diarrhea after having too many Copying Toast. This caused him to forget all of the answers he had ‘eaten’.

Take-copter aka The Hopter
Location: Visuals throughout the exhibits

There is no physical display of the Take-copter

The take-copter can only be found in the exhibition’s marketing materials. This was the very first gadget seen in the debut chapter back in 1970. Chances are, you might have seen it being worn on the head but in the first story Doraemon, Nobita and his grandson attached it to the back part of their body. The result was hilarious as Nobita suffered from wardrobe malfunction and fell off from the sky. Following this, everyone started to use the Take-copter as a headgear.

Gadgets of the Past & Future. There are 8 exhibits to see here

Gadgets of Past & Future is situated at the end of this gallery

Doraemon is holding the Obtaining Bag

Super Gloves which gives its user super-human strength

Avoid rainy days. The lawn is cordoned for crowd control and you wouldn’t be able to get up close to the installations during and after raining

Prepare to queue

The queue for the Anywhere Door installation

Singapore is transitioning into the Phase 3 of the reopening stage. A face mask is mandatory when stepping out of house

Unfortunately, Doraemon’s pals such as Nobita, Shizuka, Gian and Suneo are nowhere to be found.

P/S: Take part in this online quiz and stand a chance to win Singapore-themed Doraemon collectibles. You don’t have to visit the National Museum of Singapore to participate.

Doraemon’s Time-Travelling Adventures in Singapore
National Museum of Singapore
93 Stamford Rd 178897
Date: From October 31 to December 27, 2020
Admission: Free except for Gadgets of the Past & Future, which is located in one of the main galleries and you’ll need a general admission ticket to enter. General admission tickets ($15) are free for all Singaporeans and Permanent Residents.

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