The original Doraemon manga series was created by Hiroshi Fujimoto under the pen name of Fujiko F. Fujio, and began publication from December 1969 to 1996, being publicized into many of Shogakukan's children's magazines. This was the public introduction of Doraemon along with many of the franchises' other main characters. The comic would go on to become successful enough to start a full franchise after an extremely successful anime series began to broadcast, which then led to the character of Doraemon himself to come to be considered as a cultural icon of Japan.
Nobita's failures in school and subsequently, his career, have left his family line with endless financial problems. Thus, his great-great-grandson, Sewashi (a clumsy and very unlucky forth-grader), sends a blue robotic cat called Doraemon to Nobita's generation to help improve Nobita's circumstances. In doing so he hopes that Nobita and all of his descendants will be able to enjoy a better future.
The stories in the manga are formulaic, usually focused on the everyday struggles of Nobita himself as the protagonist of the story. In a typical chapter, Nobita comes home upset about a problem he faces in bed or in the local neighborhood. After Nobita's pleading or grinding to Doraemon, he then produces a futuristic gadget to help Nobita fix his problem, enact revenge, or flaunt to his friends.
Nobita usually goes too far, despite Doraemon's best intentions, and gets into deeper trouble than before. Sometimes, Nobita's friends (usually Suneo or Gian) even steal the gadgets and end up misusing them. However, by the end of the story, there is usually retribution to the characters who end up misusing the gadgets and a moral, although sometimes cautionary lessons are taught.
As with the 1979 anime episodes, the majority of Doraemon stories are comedies with moral lessons regarding honesty, perseverance and courage to name a few. The manga series is also aimed towards children generally, hence why the manga has been published simultaneously onto many children's magazines.
The majority of these ending suggestions were fictional, except the third ending. The third ending was actually meant to be the official ending to the series due to the Fujiko Fujio duo was busy with other works. But the duo changed their minds as they were still firmly thinking about Doraemon and from then they restarted from next month's issue.
When the Fujiko Fujio duo broke up in 1987, the very idea of an official ending to the series was never discussed. Since Fujiko F. died in 1996 before any decisions were reached, any "endings" of Doraemon are fan fiction. However, it is apparent from many anime episodes and movies where Nobita travels to the future that in the end he does marry Shizuka, leads a happy life and separates with Doraemon, although Nobita and his friends fondly remember him.
- Shogakukan Manga Award for Children's Manga, 1982
- The first Osamu Tezuka Culture Award in 1997
See full list of Doraemon chapters here.
Tentōmushi have published 45 volumes of Doraemon from 1974 to 1996.
In 2005, Shōgakukan then published 6 more volumes under the title "Doraemon+ (Doraemon Plus)", which had stories that Tentomushi didn't publish in any one out of the 45 volumes they published.
Doraemon Color Works contains additional unpublished stories.
In July 2013, Fujiko Fujio Productions announced that they along with Voyager Japan and Alt Japan Co., Ltd would release an English version of the manga digitally in color on the Amazon Kindle e-book service in North America. The first volume was released by Shogakukan on November 23, 2013. A total of 200 volumes have been released.
The Doraemon manga has been published in English in print by Shogakukan Asia, the only change in translation compared to the Amazon Kindle version is that Dorayaki are not referred to as "Fudgy Pudgy Pies". Unlike the Amazon Kindle releases these volumes are in black and white instead of color.
- 27 August 2014, 264 pages, ISBN 9789810903107, buy this volume
- 27 August 2014, 264 pages, ISBN 9789810903114, buy this volume
- 26 November 2014, 248 pages, ISBN 9789810903121, buy this volume
- 26 November 2014, 248 pages, ISBN 9789810903138, buy this volume
- Doraemon Box Set (volume 1 to 4), 2014/11, ISBN 9789810932985
- The manga is in full-color (only the Amazon Kindle version, not the print version).
- Each volume contains selected chapters from the original manga.
- Dorayaki are referred to as "Fudgy Pudgy Pies".
- Some scenes that were not in the original manga are added.
Character name changes
- Nobita - Noby
- Suneo - Sneech
- Gian - Big G
- Jaiko - Little G
- Tamako - Tammy
- Sewashi - Soby
- Dekisugi - Ace
- Tame - Tommy
- Fuuko - Phoony
Bilingual releases (English-Japanese)
Doraemon has even been published in bilingual volumes. There have been two series of bilingual, Japanese and English, volumes of Doraemon by SHOGAKUKAN ENGLISH COMICS called "Doraemon: Gadget Cat from the Future", and two audio versions.
These English-Japanese volumes have 160 pages.
- 2002/02/22, ISBN 4092270119, buy this volume
- 2002/05/31, ISBN 4092270127, buy this volume
- 2002/08/30, ISBN 4092270135, buy this volume
- 2002/11/29, ISBN 4092270143, buy this volume
- 2003/02/28, ISBN 4092270151, buy this volume
- 2003/05/30, ISBN 409227016X, buy this volume
- 2003/12/05, ISBN 4092270178, buy this volume
- 2004/03/26, ISBN 4092270186, buy this volume
- 2004/10/07, ISBN 4092270194, buy this volume
- 2005/02/25, ISBN 4092270208, buy this volume
- Box Set (volume 1 to 10), March 28, 2006, ISBN 9784092270213
Translations of these volumes were published as 英文版哆啦A夢 by 青文出版社 (CHING WIN PUBLISHING CO., LTD.) in Taiwan, in Chinese by Chuang Yi, in Thailand by NED-Comics, in mainland China by 二十一世紀出版社 (21st Century Publishing House), in Hong Kong by 香港青文出版社 and in Vietnam by Kim Dong Publisher as Đôrêmon học tiếng Anh.
These English-Japanese volumes have 176 pages.
- A Selection of Touching Stories, 2013/10/18, ISBN 9784092270336, buy this volume
- A Selection of Comic Stories, 2013/12/18, ISBN 9784092270343, buy this volume
- A Selection of Love Stories, 2014/02/18, ISBN 9784092270350, buy this volume
- A Selection of Witty Stories, 2014/04/18, ISBN 9784092270367, buy this volume
- A Selection of Scary Stories, 2014/06/18, ISBN 9784092270374, buy this volume
- A Selection of Fantastic Stories, 2014/08/18, ISBN 9784092270381, buy this volume
- The Doraemons, a spin-off about Doraemon and his friends from Robot School.
- Dorabase, a spin-off about robot cats, identical to the ones in both Doraemon and The Doraemons, who play on a baseball team.
- Daichōhen Doraemon
- Doraemon the Movie Story: Nobita and the Green Giant Legend
- Doraemon the Movie Story: Nobita's New Great Adventure Into the Underworld - The Seven Magic Users