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Never Forget The Time Bruce Willis Portrayed Anime Legend Doraemon In A Commercial

Doraemon is a super-intelligent, time-traveling robot cat from the 22nd century with a four-dimensional utility pouch full of futuristic goodies. For whatever reason, he doesn't have ears, but he's got a cute little bell on his collar, so that kind of makes up for it. Also, Doraemon's not real — probably should have led with that, huh? Anyway, he's the titular character in a massively successful Japanese media franchise that includes anime and manga and a few incredibly odd tie-in advertisements. 

Let's dig into those tie-in advertisements. Picture this: Doraemon's essentially a blue Garfield with a much better work ethic, so who should portray him in a live-action setting? And by live-action, we mean some dude wearing blue outer wear and a jingly little collar. This ignores the real question, which is WHY is there a live-action setting that requires a physical person to portray this weird cat, but let's ignore that for now. For those who recommended Jean Reno, who's best known for serious projects such as "The Da Vinci Code" and "Léon: The Professional," good news! That totally happened back in 2012 for a string of Toyota ads (which can be found in their entirety on YouTube). 

But Reno isn't the only human-sized person who has agreed to be Doraemon. Bruce "Yipee Ki-Yay" Willis has donned the golden bell, too, and it is now our life's mission to ensure that no one ever forgets that glorious fact.

Did anyone tell Bruce Willis what was happening?

In 2020, in a commercial for Japanese megacorporation SoftBank's latest 5G rollout, Bruce Willis portrays Doraemon as a middle-aged dude in a baggy blue hoodie. The entire commercial can be found on YouTube and, again, it's literally about a 5G cellular coverage plan. At no point does Willis look like he knows what's going on and it's kind of the reason this advertisement deserves to live on forever. Anyway, the commercial shows Bruce-Cat crashing into a family's home via the roof, Kool-Aid Man-style. When he opens his mouth, he's clearly speaking a different language than the Japanese dubbing which loosely matches his lip flaps. Then, he produces a propeller from nowhere, pops it on his head, and flies out of the gaping hole he made in that poor family's roof just moments ago.

He then immediately lands outside of the home, barely a few feet away, because Bruce-Cat is too powerful to use doors like the rest of the commoners. He awkwardly waves at anyone who makes eye contact, and then a woman reveals a time portal that's hidden within a desk. Yes, this part takes place on the street — don't ask. None of this seems to make any sense. Granted, it probably makes more sense to anyone who can understand Japanese, but then again ... nothing and no one can ever truly comprehend Bruce-Cat.