Saturday, 25 August 2012

Kaiju Toy Review - X-Plus Toho Large Monsters Series Mothra (Adult) 1961

This figure was my birthday present to myself!

I picked this figure up from the post office earlier today. It came in a pretty big box, and I was nearly unable to fit it into my car!

When I returned home, I opened this baby up! Mothra's box is white and features a black and white print of Mothra on the box's cover as seen above. It's a pretty sizable box at around two and a half feet in length and at least a foot and a half in height. 

Upon taking the figure out of the box, there are three pieces. There is the main figure itself, a metal rod, and a vinyl base mean't to represent a mound with Mothra's sacred symbol carved into it. For those interested in getting this figure, be wary that some work must go into posing Mothra on the metal rod. The socket for where the rod is inserted on the figure is closed and requires you to actually pierce a hole through the vinyl. For this I used a screwdriver and a hairdryer to soften the vinyl. It took me some time to make the hole big enough for the rod to fit. Once I was able to get it all put together, Mothra is one neat looking figure! Even though this was made for the Toho Large Monsters series of figures which range in the 25cm scale, this figure could easily be a part of the 30cm series as well. The wingspan for this figure is over two feet wide. The detailing is just outstanding as usual with X-Plus' figures. I originally wanted Mothra to have her own shelf, but seeing how the Toho Large Monsters Series MechaGodzilla and Gigan display well alongside her, I kept the display as seen above.

Overall, I am giving this figure a 4.5 out of 5 score. Everything about this figure is pretty great, and is hands down the best Mothra figure in my collection. The only downside was actually having to pierce through the sculpt in order to insert the metal rod. However despite that, the figure is one hell of a display piece, and a grand centerpiece for my collection. 

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

Ultra Toy Review - Ultra-Act Brothers Mantle

The third item I received yesterday was the Ultra-Act Brothers Mantle. This is the attire worn by the Ultra Brothers. The Mantle is mean't to fit any Ultra-Act figure of the Brothers such as Ultraman, Zoffy, and the upcoming Ace.

Not my picture.
This review will be quite brief since this is merely an accessory. The Mantle itself comes in a box that stands at the same height as any typical Ultra-Act box. The contents inside the box include the Mantle itself, and a Tamashii Display Stand. The stand's color itself is mean't to represent the ground of the Ultras' home planet in the Land of Light, which I thought was pretty neat. The post connects to the figure's lower back, keeping him steady. The Mantle connects to a socket below the back of the figure's neck. A couple of small caps on the back of the figure must be removed before inserting the post, and Mantle. 

The Mantle is actually quite great! I was expecting it to be made out of a soft rubber that can be bent, however, it's actually sculpted out of a firm plastic. and consists various points of articulation, which allow it to have a swaying effect. The Mantle is broken up in three parts to allow articulation. There is the left (which in the photo below has been positioned outward), the middle, which usually remains in place, then the right. The Mantle's left and right points can sway left, right, forward, and back. The middle section can move mostly forward and back.

In my opinion, the Brothers Mantle is a great addition to any Ultra-Act figures that are part of the Ultra Brothers. At $11.00, I think it's worth it. I am done buying Ultramen for a while, but whenever or if ever Ultra Seven is rereleased in a new mold, I'll be buying another Brothers Mantle for that figure! For what it is, I am giving this a five out of five rating. There are no disappointments, and you get what you paid for. 

Dual Toy Review - Revoltech Yamaguchi EvaEvo Evangelion Provisional Unit 05, and Evangelion Mark .06

Yesterday I received several items in the mail, and two of them were these guys, the Revoltech Yamaguchi EvaEvo series Evangelion Provisional Unit 05, and Evangelion Mark .06.

Both of these Evangelion mechas were first introduced in the 2009 animated movie Evangelion 2.22 You Can (Not) Advance which was the second part of a four part Rebuild of Evangelion movie series mean't to reinvent the Evangelion anime series as its creator, Hideaki Anno, as he originally wanted it in the first place. These two units were not present in the original anime, and are exclusive to the Rebuild series. Evangelion Provisional Unit 05 (left) was featured pretty briefly at the start of the film, battling the unnamed Third Angel, piloted by Mari Makinami Illustrious, a spunky hardcore Eva pilot who was also not present in the original series. The Mark .06 (right) was [SPOILER ALERT] revealed at the very end of the film piloted by Kaoru Nagisa. The Mark .06 I suspect will replace Unit 02 in protagonist Shinji Ikari and Kaoru's final showdown in the upcoming film, Evangelion 3.0 You Can (Not) Redo

Anyways, let's get these toy reviews rolling! Let's start with the Provisional Unit 05.

I bought the original figure for the Provisional Unit 05 back in 2010. That figure had various flaws such as the articulation not holding up, and parts falling off too easily, and was pretty fragile. So when I began investigating the EvaEvo sculpt, my goal was to find that this figure didn't have the same flaws. From the images I found, the figure seemed to be better than its 2009/2010 counterpart. In my rekindled mood to buy Evangelion items, I snagged this figure for a decent $32 price tag off of HobbyLink Japan.  Upon receiving it, I was actually quite pleased with the figure! Several things were improved. First off the size of the figure was bumped up a little, allowing ease in handling it. Also the articulation in the lance on its right right has become more firm, and can hold a pose without it bending. The legs are much more steadier and can actually hold the figure up on its own, unlike the original figure. Also articulation in the waist area has vastly improved allowing the torso to bend forward and back, while the original allowed it to only twist left and right. I also have to note that the wheels on Unit 05's four feet do in fact spin, a detail not present on the original figure either. 

Unlike the original figure, the EvaEvo figure of Unit 05 comes with a lot more accessories! Two pairs of hands/robotic claws are included - one pair are opened, the other pair are shut. Also four sets of smoother wheels are included, giving the illusion that they're spinning. Finally, like with almost all of the figures in the EvaEvo line, a part of the Angel it battles is also included. In Unit 05's case it is of the unnamed Third Angel from the start of the movie. It is pinned against a pillar, and the Eva's lance is pierced into it. 

While I do find this figure a vast improvement over the original by a long shot, I have only one complaint. As seen in various photos of this figure, it shows it battling the Third Angel with the help of numerous stands. However, the figure is only included with one, and does not help at all when trying to recreate the scene, which renders much of the accessories moot. I don't know whether you can buy extra stands or what, but the lack of more stands to recreate the scene in the product photos does hinder the score I'm about to give this figure, unfortunately. 

Out of score of five, I'm rating the Revoltech Yamaguchi EvaEvo Evangelion Provisional Unit 05 a three. Like I said, this figure is a major improvement over the original, but the lack of stands to accomplish the intended battle scene really sucks the value out of it. But still, the figure looks pretty neat displayed on its own anyway, without any supports too!

Anyways, with that done, let's move onto the Mark .06!

The Evangelion Mark .06 is an interesting Eva. Obviously it bears a striking resemblance to Eva Unit 01, but it's also different too. Its appearance in Evangelion 2.22 You Can (Not) Advance was much more brief than the Provisional Unit 05, and yet it got itself a figure. I'm not complaining, but it's a really cool move by Kaiyodo, and a way for people to anticipate the third film in the series. 

The figure stands at around 5 or 6 inches, the standard height for these figures essentially. Unlike the figures before and after, the Mark .06 does not come with an Angel accessory. However it comes with various hand gestures, its lance (as seen in the photo) and the moon with an LED light fixed into it. An alternate head is also supplied, which attaches to the moon and LED light to make its red visor glow. It's a neat effect in a darkened room. However, this accessory does have its flaws.

The moon accessory is mean't to replicate the Mark .06 arrival at the end of the second Evangelion movie. However, like with the Provisional Unit 05, its the lack of stands that hinder this effect. When propped up, the figure hardly is in a levitating position and its feet touch the ground, ruining the effect of it descending. I could also perch it up higher, but the stands can only hold so much weight and the figure as well as the moon accessory either tilts backwards or forwards, risking of tipping over. I would've preferred that a special stand have been made that would allow the figure and the accessory to be sturdier and high enough to replicate the levitating effect. So like with Unit 05, the Mark .06 is displayed on its own, which looks good regardless. 

Overall, I'll give the Mark .06 a rating of three and a half out of five. This figure's issues regarding accessories isn't as bad as that for the previous figure. Despite that issue, the Mark .06 is well sculpted and a neat and unique piece in any Evangelion collection. 

Right now I have my EvaEvo Evangelion Unit 03 in the mail. It should arrive hopefully by Friday. With that, here's a picture of my EvaEvo collection so far!

Sunday, 19 August 2012

Happy Birthday... To me!

Well, after my numerous Evangelion related purchases earlier this week, I decided to end it all before the end of the month with another X-Plus figure, the Toho Large Monsters Series Mothra 1961. This is, in a way, a Birthday present to myself.... yeah it's my Birthday today (August 19th).

With that, as well as the yet-to-be released Ultra-Act Red King, and X-Plus Toho 30cm Series Titanosaurus, will be the last figures for this month. I will have to save up for September considering that I'll be getting both the S.H. MonsterArts King Ghidorah, and X-Plus Toho Large Monsters Series Godzilla 1968. I'm getting Anguirus too, but thanks to my father who is getting me it as a so called Late Birthday / Early Christmas present. 

Sunday, 12 August 2012

Latest Orders!

Well, I placed a plethora of orders in the last several days!

Firstly, with the impending release of the third theatrical Evangelion movie, Evangelion 3.0 You Can (Not) Redo in November, I ordered two Revoltech Evas: The Evangelion Mark .06, and the new Evangelion Unit 02 design from the recent trailer for the said film. The latter will be released in mid October. I ordered both figures from Amiami. I also ordered myself the first issue of IDW's new mini series, Godzilla: The Half Century War, which I should be receiving any day now. I also ordered the Revoltech Evangelion Provisional Unit 05, Revoltech Evangelion Unit 03, and also at the last minute, I snagged the Ultra-Act Brothers Mantle from Amiami for about $10 along with my order for the Revoltech Evangelion Mark .06.

Reorganized my collection, again!

Yesterday I reorganized my Godzilla collection once again, however, I think this is how I'll be keeping it for good... at least until I move out next year. XD

The poster in the back is of two of my original kaiju, Olragon and Mirma,
drawn by the Kaiju Samurai himself, Matt Frank. 
Extra space is for this month's X-Plus 30cm Titanosaurus, and next month's
Toho Large Monsters Series Godzilla 1968, and Anguirus 1968.

Why not Nirvash? 

New Godzilla Figure From Bandai Tamashii Nations

So far we have not seen anything new related to S.H. MonsterArts at this year's Tamashii Features Vol. 4 in Hong Kong, with the exception of November's Burning Godzilla. However, though not a kaiju exclusive line in contrast to S.H. MonsterArts, Tamashii Nations is starting up a brand new line of figures called Perfect Model. They are in the 12 inch scale, and are articulated. The line will cover various properties such as Star Wars, Tiger & Bunny, and Power Rangers. However, they are also releasing a Godzilla figure into the line too! The design of the figure is based on the BioGoji suit from 1989's Godzilla vs. Biollante.

Personally, I'd have to see more of this figure before I'm convinced enough to actually buy it. I have mixed feelings due to the fact that I JUST got my X-Plus 30cm Godzilla 1989 several weeks ago, and in no need for another one. However, if the figure proves to be more than a statue and have a substantial level of articulation that the other figures in this line have shown, and if the price is right, then I'll consider buying it.

For now, I have mixed feelings on the figure. Again, if there's more to this figure than what's shown, then my opinion could change.

Here are photos of other figures from the upcoming Perfect Model line.

Saturday, 11 August 2012

X-Plus 25cm Gorosaurus Prototype

Just as we were given the X-Plus Toho Large Monsters Series Godzilla '68 and Anguirus '68, we are treated to prototype images of this line's Gorosaurus figure. There is no stated date of release yet. However, I am intending on getting this figure since I missed out on the 30cm one. From the lineup now, I think we can expect the entire Destroy All Monsters roster to be done in the Large Monsters Series as well. If this is true, then I will obtain a good number of figures in the near future with the exception of Varan since I already have the 30cm figure of him, and Minilla since I don't buy the online exclusives. I obtained these pictures through X-Plus' blog.

Friday, 10 August 2012

Updating This Year's Haul

I know I said earlier this year that I would slow down. Thankfully, I'm done with X-Plus' 30cm line AFTER this month's release of Titanosaurus. However, in regards to the 25cm line, I am surely not finished! Anyways, here's my updated reservation list!

Revoltech Yamaguchi EvaEvo Evangelion Mark .06 - Available Now
From AmiAmi

Ultra-Act Ultra Brothers Mantle - Available Now
From AmiAmi

Revoltech Yamaguchi EvaEvo Evangelion Unit 03 - Available Now
From BigBadToyStore

Revoltech Yamaguchi EvaEvo Evangelion Provisional Unit 05 - Available Now
From HobbyLink Japan

Ultra-Act Red King - Late August
From AmiAmi

X-Plus Toho 30cm Series Titanosaurus - Late August
From Hobby Search

S.H. MonsterArts King Ghidorah - Late September
From AmiAmi

X-Plus Toho Large Monsters Series Godzilla 1968 - Late September
From Hobby Search

X-Plus Toho Large Monsters Series Anguirus 1968 - Late September
From Hobby Search

Revoltech Yamaguchi Evangelion Unit 02 [Trailer Ver.] - Mid October
From AmiAmi

S.H. MonsterArts Godzilla (1995) - Late November
From AmiAmi

S.H. MonsterArts Godzilla Junior - Late December
From Big In Japan