Dacapo (Sept. 9)
“Tomoko-chan,” who comes across as a young lady of good breeding,
Hiroshi on the sofa, motionless and expressionless. The air
set to a cool 21 degrees, but Hiroshi still can’t keep from perspiring.
his discomfort stem from nervousness? Or is it just revulsion at the
sensation of “Tomoko-chan” ‘s silicone skin?
“Where’s my libido when I need it?” Hiroshi moans.
A 21-year-old student, Hiroshi was enlisted by Dacapo to report on a
to “LaLa,” a newly opened shop in Tokyo’s Akihabara district that rents
private rooms furnished with a bath, toilet and, one other item . . .
life-size female “mannequins.”
Businesses renting sex dolls have been springing up rapidly over the
two years, and may currently number over 100 in the Tokyo area alone.
specialize in home delivery, but LaLa’s stable of 17 latex ladies do
entertaining on the premises.
“Tomoko,” whose proper designation is “Dutch wife,” boasts a solid
limbs as opposed to being inflatable. “She” stands 150 cm tall and
kg. To purchase one of her kind outright would cost 600,000 yen; but at
LaLa, the pleasure of her company may be obtained at the rate of 12,000
for 90 minutes.
“On a really good day, we might get as many as 30 customers ,” the
manager tells Dacapo. “Our patrons range in age from teens to men in
60s. For the most part they appear to be quiet, timid types, who
feel more at ease with a doll than a young chick.
“Some bring along shopping bags with a couple of extra costumes. I
they enjoy dressing up the dolls and taking snapshots.”
Upon entering LaLa, Hiroshi received an instruction sheet that reads,
doll will not make remarks or engage in ‘selfish’ activities, but won’t
anything else, such as ‘It hurts,’ either. Her body is more delicate
that of a real human. Bending the joints or fingers in an unnatural
can result in breakage to the skin, so please handle her gently.”
After watching an erotic DVD to get himself in the proper frame of
Hiroshi set about to the task of seduction.
“After I undressed her, I was upset to see that her head hadn’t been
properly screwed on,” he grumbles.
Did the earth move, for Hiroshi at least?
“Well, I felt something,” he admits. “But it gave me something of a
trip, and I was asking myself, ‘What am I doing here?’ and I guess at
point I got completely turned off.”
Takuya, Hiroshi’s classmate, found his doll — a prim, bespectacled
dressed in a stewardess uniform and named Alice — a bit more
“There was no problem in the missionary position, but with some of the
others we tried I had to hold her up, and since she was quite heavy my
got tired. “I kept thinking of previous enjoyable experiences, and was
finally able to go all the way.”
Still, the dolls’ overall impression clearly leaves something to be
“It made me realize how futile it can feel to convey love that doesn’t
reciprocated,” Takuya philosophizes.
Considering that LaLa’s rates are the same as shops featuring real
Dacapo concludes that the doll rental business, which requires extra
on the part of customers, really has its work cut out.
The Japan Times: Aug. 28, 2005
(C) All rights reserved
MARK SCHREIBER – The Japan Times
Dacapo (Sept. 9)