The feminine side of Gundam
This summer, Tokyo was in the grips of some serious Gundam fever. To mark the 30th anniversary of one of Japan’s most beloved protectors, a massive 1/1 scale replica was built in Odaiba, making the shopping and entertainment area a temporary otaku Mecca.
Now that the fever is subsiding and the famous robot has been disassembled, those whose still thirst for all things Gundam (and there are many) may find Akihabara’s “New Type” bar of interest — that is, of course, if you also enjoy the company of cross-dressing men. Leave it to Japan with its ever-evolving cosplay, host-club, hostess-club and cafe cultures, to dream up New Type: a Gundam-themed transvestite bar.
Interestingly, New Type is only open late night on weekends, as the staff are all salarymen with regular jobs (now that I’ve seen their evening attire, I’d be curious to see their daytime ensembles). Return guests will be delighted to hear that entrance fees lower as one rises in “rank” at the bar: from ¥1300 a drink as a “Private” all the way down to ¥0 as an “Admiral.”
Image of the fabulously bejeweled, fan-made Gundam from Pink Tentacle