I loved Doraemon as a child. I still like it as it is one of the few fond memories I carry with me. In storage I have a full box of Doraemon manga, movies, stationaries, plushies and other merchandise.
Why do I like it? Perhaps it can be said that, when I was a youngling, Doraemon was my God. Not because I worshipped him, but that I needed someone like him in my life.
I have always been a bit of an outcast or the type that gets left alone to do his own thing. At the same time I was also filled with creativity, curiousity and dreams that needs to be shared. And somehow this blue and white earless robotic cat was the answer.
Doraemon, being at one point referred to as an Asian Hero (by Times Magazine I think), was the only animated character to have been regarded as an icon in the collective eastern sub-conscious. He represents friendship, companionship, guardianship, mentorship. His 4-dimensional pocket filled with simple but amazing technologies represents optimism about the future, because virtually nothing is impossible when he has a gadget for every situation; from flying to teleporting, from bread that gives perfect memory to time travelling.
But Doraemon wasn't just a genie robot. He had his own quirks, like being terrified of rats despite being a freaking cat, always smitten by some stray cat, and having a disturbing addiction for dorayakis (red bean paste buns). His imperfections allows us to relate to him as a friend rather than simply a tool. However he fails or his tools fail, the message has never changed: with great power comes great responsibility. Yes. Doraemon was the character who first coined that saying, not Spider-man the big screen, just not in English.
At one point in my life I did hope that God was a bit more like a Doraemon, that when my life is down or I'm caught in a pinch, he would just reach his arm into his vessle of unlimited power and hand me a miracle.
But wholehearted wishful thinking is, ultimately, the trait of childlike naivete. Growing up, we gotta be the change in the world we want to see. Our dreams don't generally come true without effort and sacrifice. But who knows. Maybe one of us will end up becoming the Doraemon for someone else. After all, you don't need to be God to be a helpful friend.