Everyone knows these characters by heart: The weak and whiny Nobita, the snobbish and wealthy Suneo, Gian the bully, and Doraemon. All across Japan you see fans of different ages, men and women alike. Now, they take part in a TOYOTA commercial!
トヨタ 実写版 ドラえもん CM １-４総集編 -ReBORN- TOYOTA:
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Shizuka: “When I grow up, I want to drive to a barbecue!”
Nobita: “Sure ! Let’s go together!”
A thiry-year-old Nobita takes first the
subway and next the bus, with Shizuka at his side, to a riverside to barbecue.
“Nobita, my violin class starts in no time.” Shizuka mutters. “WHAT?! ” Nibita widens his eyes. “I’ll give you a ride!” A super chic Suneo appears out of nowhere, flashing his car keys in front of the pair.
Just like that, Shizuka hops onto Suneo’s jeep, as he mocks Nobita, “So, why don’t you have a car again?” And they drive off into the sunset.
“I knew it! Matter over mind, everytime! I am nothing until I own a car!”
Back at home, he starts bawling like when he was in grade school. Suddenly his desk drawer slides open and Nobita’s hero pops out!
Doraemon: “How’ve you been lately?”
Nobita: “Doraemon ! ! !” He beams.
Nobita: “Doraemon, get me a car!”
Doraemon: “I can’t.”
Nobita: “What? WHY?”
Doraemon: “Because you don’t have a driver’s license!” !”
Nobita: “Umm, driver’s license… ”
Doraemon: “You know, we don’t need a car to get somewhere. We have the Anywhere Door.”
Nobita: “I know. DUH.”
Doraemon: “Well, if you want to enjoy the scenery, take the propeller hat.”
Nobita proudly waved it off.
Nobita: “I vow to never use your gadgets! Never again! I want to drive!”
Nobita: “First, off to the car show! Hand me your Anywhere Door!”
Doraemon: “I thought you just vowed never to use my gadgets…”
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In the commercial, the middle-aged Nobita still depends on Doraemon to solve his problems. The issue is, without a car, Shizuka is wooed away by the rich and showy Suneo. This was always a major plot device in Doraemon comics, but the true message behind it is: Hello to the thirty-year-old males out there. So do YOU own a car? Not yet? Do you really want to become a real-life Nobita? . . . . . . . . . Where would your Doraemon be, then?
Japan has a long history of using celebs, manga or anime into commercials to make a deeper impression on audiences. This year in particular, a mix of 2 or all of these categories have become a leading trend. Yup, it’s everywhere now. For instance, the Japan telecommunications company, AU, invited Ayame Gouriki to appear alongside characters from the manga Star of the Giants, and even managed to make sense out of it! The purpose is to catch the eye of the viewer. It could be a simple promotional message, or an entire stand-alone campaign by itself. After all, who doesn’t want a towel with “Star of the Giant” artwork on it? And its much more affordable than a Gouriki side product, too.
KDDI au スマートバリュー 30 sec. “Initiation Press Conference” – AYAME GOURIKI
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Coming back to the TOYOTA commercial, the 30-year-old Doraemon parody invited actor Satoshi Tsumabuki as Nobita, Atsuko Maeda as Gian’s sister (not too bad on the eye), and superstar Jean Reno as Dorameon! ! The tough action star that could kill a room full of mobsters without even flinching is now in Japan, playing Doraemon.
Seriously. This is more mind-blowing that all the other punch lines put together. The impact isn’t without a price, you know, Just imagine how much money was spent for the appearance of stars like Tsumabuki or Reno. And it worked. Most people don’t understand why Jean Reno was invited to play Doraemon, but everyone understood and related to the “Nobita complex” that was delivered. And that, by itself, with Jean Reno’s Doraemon, makes a solid impression indeed. It’s got us all thinking the same thing. . . . . . . It’s time to buy a car.
About the author
International advertising producer, movie publisher, and theater publicist. Enrolled in the DY&R Wunderman Script-writing team, a film director for Gamania productions, and the Section Manager of the Product Development Dept.