Wednesday, 20 April 2016

Original Figure Review - X-Plus Gigantic Series Yuji Sakai Modeling Collection Godzilla 1999

Written by Arlo Hansen

Whew! How long has it been since my last figure review? A couple months? Well, I am back with an all new original figure review of the X-Plus Gigantic Series Yuji Sakai Modeling Collection Godzilla 1999 vinyl figure. I intend to do several more reviews over the coming weeks of items I've had for a little while, but not yet have reviewed. That is besides the point right now, because now we are going to take a look at this hunk of soft vinyl. I know I am pretty late with this review since many collectors have already done their reviews on this figure when it first released last year. However, I don't care. Better late than never, right?

So, without any further ado, let us get started!

The Gigantic Series from X-Plus has seen some rather amazing looking sculpts since it first started back in 2013 - I think. While the figure line also includes large vinyl figures of anime characters, notably from Dragonball Z, it's their Godzilla figures that have caught my attention. However, I have been unable to acquire the first two figures (Godzilla 2001 and Godzilla 1995) because at the time I didn't have the money nor space for them. Do I regret missing out on them? Definitely! They're amazing vinyl figures and have a great presence among a collection. Especially Godzilla 1995 (aka Burning Godzilla)! However, I was able to move on and get on my life without them. However, one particular figure just kept grabbing my attention every so often: Godzilla 1999. I just had to find a way to get it. Surely enough, I was able to buy one off a guy in the X-Plus Collectors group on Facebook back in February. G99 is the third and most recent addition to the Gigantic Series. It's on the shorter end of the ruler, standing around 14 inches tall. A bit taller than some of the bigger Toho 30cm Series figures. However, despite it being shorter than previous Gigantic Series figures, Godzilla 1999 is still rather massive and long. It's tail extends well over two feet. It's definitely an item that requires a lot of shelf room. In my case, I display it on top where it has no shelf restrictions.

The Gigantic Series Godzilla 1999 is also the third addition to X-Plus' sub-series, the Yuji Sakai Modeling Collection. It was sculpted by said master monster maker, Yuji Sakai. The figure is based on his unused maquette design that he made for the 1999 film Godzilla 2000: Millennium. Despite it being unused, the design is still widely popular among fans and collectors. The overall sculpt is absolutely brilliant and highly detailed - which I'll discuss in a bit. The pose depicts Godzilla with his tail raised parallel to the ground, like a T-Rex somewhat, and seems as if he is roaring at another monster or charging towards it. No matter from what angle you look at it, Godzilla always looks amazing. 

The only accessory to come with this figure is a vinyl block that you put under the tail to keep it propped up.

You do not get a sense of the awesome levels of detailing in this figure until you start looking at it very close up. The head especially. Godzilla's just filled with meticulous detailing in both sculpt and paint. Some features look very organic like the mouth and teeth. The mouth has a glossy fleshy red color and the teeth are a bony creamy yellow with a darker gradient near the gums. The eyes have brown irises and the eyeball itself has a dirty orange color to it. What I really like is the blood red veins sprouting from the corner of the eyes. It gives Godzilla a more aggressive and enraged look to him.

Moving down, we see Godzilla's massive, sharp extraordinarily sculpted dorsal plates. Keep in mind that these are quite pointy and can cause injuries if mishandled. The bright shiny violet coloration of Godzilla's distinctive dorsal plates contrasts well with Godzilla's green skin. I really love how the dorsal plates are colored in a way that makes them look as if they just sprouted from Godzilla's back. There is a minor gradient between the green skin and violet spines that looks absolutely organic. Very well done, in my opinion!

This is the standard version of the figure. The internet RIC Boy exclusive from X-Plus' website was released with semi-translucent orange colored dorsal plates that makes Godzilla look like he is charging his atomic breath - mind you that his atomic breath in Godzilla 2000: Millennium (1999) was orange instead of blue.

Like Godzilla's teeth, his toes and claws feature a similar yellowish, creamy bone color. It's brightest at the ends while near the roots its gradients into the normal green skin color, which looks very nice. Also like the teeth, they have tendril-like markings that sprout from the base. It certainly adds a new level of depth in the overall detailing of this figure.

While I do not have any complaints about this figure itself, I do have a complaint regarding how X-Plus packages their figures sometimes. When I received this figure, the toe had a paint scratch near the tip. Granted, I bought this figure used, but the same exact thing happened to me when I bought the Toho 30cm Series Yuji Sakai Modeling Collection Godzilla 1991. That figure came to me brand new and still had a similar scratch on the same toe. What must have happened was that the box was handled roughly and the toe must have rubbed against the inside of the box, causing the scratch. This is something I can live with, but it just goes to show that X-Plus still needs to improve the way they package their figures, like add some extra cushioning inside the boxes to prevent potential scratches when being shipped. 

Yuji Sakai also utilized his Godzilla maquette design for the highly popular S.H. MonsterArts Godzilla 2000 Millennium action figure from Bandai. Both it and the Gigantic Series figure can be seen side-by-side above.

Compared with other X-Plus figures, Gigantic Godzilla '99 is a big boy! He towers over the Toho 30cm Series Godzilla 2014 and the previous entry into the Yuji Sakai Modeling Collection, the 30cm Godzilla 1991. This being my very first Gigantic Series figure, I don't have other figures from the line to compare it with in regards to size.

All in all, what are my final thoughts on the X-Plus Gigantic Series Yuji Sakai Modeling Collection Godzilla 1999? It is an amazing figure and has great shelf presence if you have the space for it. I regretted missing out on it when it was still available for preorder, but thankfully I was able to grab this one for a great price through a fellow collector on Facebook. Despite the paint scratch on the toe, I feel absolutely okay saying that this has become one of my absolute favorite X-Plus figures of all time!

If you don't have this figure and interested in one, then I suggest you check eBay periodically. Sometimes there will be figures listed at great prices.

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