the swarm of melt-in-your-hand goodness of MSiAs and other PVC anime
products, one company still produces seemingly bulletproof diecast
wonders that give Bandai's Soul of Chogokin line a run for their
money. Yes, folks - it's Aoshima's Miracle House to the fore! Continuing
their excellent run of Go Nagai's super robots, this time it's the
super gothic Mazinkaiser.
Let me state now that I haven't watched
the anime or played Super Robot Wars before, so I'm basing my views
on the toy's own merits only. There was some confusion about the
various repaint versions available. Well, be enlightened by visiting
HLJ... The Normal
OAV version comes in white/dark-blue; The Limited
version is in silver-gray/metallic dark-blue; The "Japan-only"
version features silver-grey & blue. I put my money on the
Normal version... all three are similar except for the colors and
are listed for ¥12800.
To me, the appeal of Miracle House's
Shin Seiki Gokin line isn't so much on the accessories and gimmicks,
but rather on the extensive use of diecast and superb finishing
and attention to details. The first toy in the series, the Shin
Getter 1, set a high watermark for both. How does the Mazinkaser
stack up? For the Zinc-deficient
among you, let it be known you can probably get your RDA's worth
by holding a Mazinkaser in your sleep! The heft is substantial -
don't throw it at living things. The finish, on the other hand,
while still very high, cannot beat the Shin Getter's terrific melding
of glossy and matte surfaces. There is very little evidence of paint
oversprays or unevenness, and what little defects you see in the
photos are just tiny bits of Styrofoam which I'd failed to remove.
the box comes with 2 spare fists for holding the sword, 2 optional
gimmick launching arms (plastic), 2 spare hands for the "shaking
hands" pose with Shin Getter (already a tradition of sorts),
2 missiles for the torso launcher, a Pilder, a sword and parts for
Early on, the publicity photos of the
toy had some of us wondering if it even had knee or elbow joints
at all. The good news is, Mazinkaiser is not
a total brick. The elbows
and knees feature 2 axis of movement, but face it - this toy is
not going to be able to pull off any really dynamic poses.
The elbows in fact have
an extension to allow the
solidly built forearms manage some semblance of a fighter's pose.
It's most fortunate the joint is held together by a screw... should
it loosen in the future, a gentle adjustment with a screwdriver
will do the trick.
On to the gimmicks! First up, the Pilder
in the head is removable
-but you may be disappointed to find it a sawn-off version made
just to plug into the head socket. Still, a full version of the
Pilder is included. The coolest trick Mazinkaiser has up its sleeve
(literally!), are the optional Turbo
Smasher Punch arms. Insert
the punches and give them a couple of twists to wind up the spring.
Press the trigger on the shoulder and watch it SPIN off!! Then we
have the obligatory anatomically
positioned launcher. No big
deal really, except that the trigger
is placed on the back and
will not be accessible if the Scrander pack is in place. A minor
oversight on an otherwise excellent toy.
About the Scrander wings... it's REALLY
BIG!They measure about 14"
wide when fully assembled. I hope you have enough shelf space, folks!
itself is also diecast, with
rectangular yellow polycaps to accept the wing stubs. The wings
themselves are molded of glossy red plastic, the points and edges
are pretty sharp but not dangerously so. It's the tail fins that
seem really prickly to me.
And of course, his magnificent
sword ... The perfect
weapon for a gothic Kaiser
to wield. IF it had been diecast as well I would have swooned. But
alas, sharply molded plastic will have to do for now.
All in all, Mazinkaiser is a great
addition to any Gokin lover's collection. Despite it's minor problems,
you'll be glad you didn't turn your back on this toy.