Geek tested and nerd approved: Meet the RJ-Romain Jerome RJ X Donkey Kong. Seeking out a healthy dose of gaming nostalgia, we took the opportunity during our visit to the brand’s Boutique in old town Geneva to go hands-on with this cool, bold, arcade-inspired timepiece, and here is our report on this unusual and captivating watch.
Do you ever feel nostalgic for your childhood arcade? Well, you are not alone, and there’s no need to worry either, because the good news is that it’s completely fine. Nerd culture is mainstream now. Geekdom has become en vogue as comic book characters, arcade games and other pop culture icons have become increasingly popular with hipsters, elevating their previously uncool image amongst a growing audience. Being a geek has even become a badge of honor.
Thanks to RJ Romain Jerome and its cool generational icons collection, you can display your geekiness right on your wrist with Pac-Man, Space Invaders or SuperMario themed watches. Among the latest additions to the arcade collection of watches is the RJ X Donkey Kong limited edition.
Let’s begin with some basic information about Donkey Kong to establish your geek cred (although if you’ve read this far I’m not sure that’s still necessary?). The brainchild of Shigeru Miyamoto, Donkey Kong was released by Nintendo in 1981. It is one of the most popular video games of all time. It features a giant barrel tossing monkey and introduced the character of Mario (originally “Jumpman“). Donkey Kong looks dated so it is easy to forget how cutting edge it was back in the early 80s – which was one of the reasons for its success.
The art of nostalgia – Do not be mistaken, despite its somewhat toy-like appearance and unusual theme for a luxury mechanical watch, the Donkey Kong is a sophisticated timepiece. Its complex dial has been specially crafted to create a three-dimensional pixelated effect, just like in the first Donkey Kong arcade games. It is built on three-levels that are either sand-blasted or satin-brushed. The characters and elements are hand-painted in cold-enamel in the original Donkey Kong colors. The arrow-shaped hands are satin-brushed and their pointers are coated with Luminescent material (Superluminova C1 ‘blue emission’).
The black PVD-titanium case is 46mm in diameter. It features articulated lugs with ball-and-socket joints for enhanced comfort and so it wears pretty well despite its dimensions. The case back has a grainy texture and a star pattern. Emblazoned with a Donkey Kong medallion, it is secured with safety screws. The crown is screw-down and water resistance is 30 meters.
The Donkey Kong is powered by the caliber RJ001 with automatic winding. Manufactured with Concepto, it is based on a well-known reliable workhorse, the Valjoux 7750, yet unusually in this case without the chronograph complication.
The Donkey Kong is worn on a red rubber strap with stellar-patterned interior. It is secured with a PVD-steel folding buckle. For more information, please visit www.romainjerome.ch.
Technical specifications – RJ Romain Jerome RJ X Donkey Kong
- Case: 46 mm, black PVD coated titanium – sapphire crystal – water resistant to 30m
- Movement: calibre RJ001 (manufactured with Concepto), automatic winding – 28’800 vibrations per hour – power reserve 42 hours – 23 jewels – hours, minutes.
- Strap: red rubber strap with folding buckle
- Limited edition: 81 pieces
- Reference: RJ.M.AU.IN.015.01
- Price: EUR 17,500