The Bandai Museum

I had some time to kill on Friday in Matsudo (a Smallish city near my place in Chiba) before going to teach my evening class, so I went to the Bandai Museum there. It’s set up as if it was a museum from the far future, looking back on the heroic battles fought between Earth-Federation soldiers in Gundam Mobile-Suits (themselves derived from Sci-Fi writer Robert Heinlein’s earlier concepts in Starship Troopers) and the Separatists from Space-colonies in their equivalent Zakus.

In reality, it’s a kind of themed exhibition of the Gundam animation-series Universe, including models of an orbiting space-station, with huge mirrors to reflect images of greenery from it’s farmlands onto the windows, life-size relics from imaginary sci-fi battles and a huge, to-scale model of a Gundam that people can ride a life to the top of. For this last exhibit, people could pay to dress up as characters from the anime series, in something known as ‘Cos-Play’ (costume-play; there are many Japanese-English words like this) and play at really being there. Of course, this experience wouldn’t be complete without a keitai (mobile-phone) picture of the moment, which is what I saw a young couple taking of one another at the top of the lift!

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