toyboxdx toy blog brog: is graceful art of daily expressing japanese toy
April 11, 2007
Nitto is perhaps best known as the manufacturer of Kow Yokoyama’s “SF3D Original” (now Machinen Krieger) model kits. A formidable presence on the Japanese toy scene in the ’60s and ’70s, their “Gamera” and “Gappa” soft vinyl figures (shown above) are considered classics of the art form.
April 10, 2007
April 8, 2007
The “Real Color” version of the Soul of Chogokin Xabungle, sold as a mail-away premium in Bandai’s Project The Soul of Chogokin book, has finally hit the streets.
I haven’t managed to get my hands on one yet, but there’s a great review showing the differences between it and the previously released version at the Japanese-language site GanHoo. Another brief review can be found at Yacolog.
For those who can’t decipher Japanese, the big changes are a brighter paint job, inked-in panel lines, and the addition of a handful of accessories (a missile launcher and three pint-sized “Walker Machines,” to be exact.) Bust out them credit cards — they’ve already hit the online auctions, going for a premium of from 25% to 100% of the original 6,200 yen price.
April 7, 2007
April 6, 2007
Alen accidently [and stupidly – Ed.] wiped out the original thread that this appeared in. But, I thought it might make a good Rumble so here it is…
Often referred to as the most common “Gateway” toy into Japanese Toy collecting, the Bandai Ultra-Kaiju are a lot of things, but respected is not often one of them.
I, however, love the things. They are like crack to me. Easily gotten, cheap, and so much fun to handle. Plus they look colorful and great on any shelf. Especially with many of their fellow brethren on hand.
They also tend to come in 2 varieties…The Funk and The Legends.
This is most evident in my recent twin purchase of King Joe and Tyrant.
King Joe is of course the Legend…
Remembered as the powerful robot adversary from one of the rare 2-part episodes of Ultra 7, this character has captured the hearts of kaiju fans for many years. He first appeared in America by way of Popy and Mattel when he was brought over from Japan as part of Godzilla’s Gang in the 1970’s.
He has been made in Toyform in japan in every style and design imaginable. Of course he was famouse for having 2 versions in the Arklon line of diecast (once again appearing on American shores). He was one of the very few Kaiju to get the Chogokin popy treatment and he will be returning as a modern Soul of Chogokin figure in April.
But, what is his appeal?
I think its the fact that he is a Kaiju designed to look like a giant, toy, robot myself. He looks like a 50’s and 60’s tin wind-up or battery powered robot come to life and grown to giant size.
He was also a combining robot, which was a rarity to be sure in live action televison of the 1960’s. Though he didn’t really split into anything very recognizable, he did split.
The Bandai vinyl is molded in nice metallic gold and painted in silver, black, and has a cool metalic rainbow thing going on in his chest area. :D
He is a nice break from the usual organic Ultrakaiju.
Now here we have Tyrant…The Funkmeister!
One of the evil Yapool’s army of Cyborg Kaiju from Ultraman Ace, Tyrant is molded in green, sprayed in silver, and has the most lethal set of appendages I’ve ever seen on ANY Kaiju. His right hand is an axe, his left hand is a spiked mace. Plus he has horns and spikes everywhere.
Much like Gigan of the Godzilla series, this Kaiju was nothing created by nature. Every part of this cool design gives the impression that this is a conquering war-machine designed to kill and only kill. Add to that the Chrysler symbol that was festooned upon the belly of all the Yapool kaiju and the copious silver paint and Tyrant delivers the FUNK!
Also adding to the FUNK is the villainous Giant Yapool…
A regular thorn in the side of Ultraman Ace through the entire run of his series.
This version of Yapool is acually the most recent one that appeared in the series Ultraman Moebius.
Here is a video tribute to the Evil King Kaiju known as Yapool…
This is my absolute favorite kind of the Kaiju, the REAL HEAD TRIPPERS. It was with great satisfaction that I opened him out of the mailer package and my roomate proclaimed…
“What head-tripping Shroom-Head designed that thing?!?”
This is how I guage when I have a real winner. :D
The only complaint I have is that I wanted him to come with his groovie septor like he is carrying around in those clips from Ultraman Ace.
The advantages of Bandai’s Ultra Kaiju are many. Besides the great price, the sheer variety of sculpts and attention to detail is unsurpassed in any other toyline. There are Kaiju designs in this line that have never and probably will NEVER see the light of day in any other form. Also there is something to be said about one of the longest running figure lines in the world.
These are a lot of fun and look great on display, I recomend the whole line.
April 5, 2007
Check it out: the latest edition of USA Otackers, the column I co-write with Patrick Macias, has hit the stands in issue 110 of Japan’s Figure Oh magazine. This month’s column, titled “Otaku de Eigo,” gives readers a quick rundown of English language collecting terminology (“MIB,” “MOC,” “punched,” “unpunched,” etc., etc.)… And a peek into the heart and soul of the only collector worthy of the title “Mr. C-10,” Josh Fraser. I quote:
Matt: The C stands for “Condition” and goods are rated C-1 to C-10. C-1
would be like a toy that has passed through a dog’s digestive system
while C-10 is something that only the hand of God has touched before.
Patrick: So a “cherry boy” would be a C-10â€¦
Matt: Speaking of which, let me tell you a story about this hardcore collector friend of mine from Boston. His name is Josh. His nickname is Mr. C-10. He’s obsessed with Gaiking. And so his life’s mission is to find the world’s cleanest specimen of the GA-51 Gaiking Chogokin. He’s got this glass case in his bedroom, and it’s full of identical, never-combined Gaikings, all in pristine condition. Perhaps the sight of them lulls him to sleep at night… We’ll never know. Anyway, he’s got this strange ritual of hooking up a vacuum cleaner to the case and sucking all the air out of it. To preserve his collection in a perfect vacuum. That’s Mr. C-10.
Josh posted a much clearer shot of his Gaikings a few weeks back, but I was happy to give him a shout-out he so richly deserved in Japan… Now he’ll be even more mobbed by chicks than usual when he arrives! Just make sure you bring that Gaiking vinyl man-purse I saw you secretly buying at the Tokyo Toy Show a few years back!