Friday, July 25, 2008

MechaGonira by Amapro

MechaGonira (メカゴニラ) by Amapro (アマプロ) is just a little different than the other gorilla toys I have written about so far. What we have here is essentially a mashup of King Kong and a lesser known monster named Garuban.

This toy is actually based on a diecast toy from the 1970s. You can see the toy here to the right. I'm not entirely sure what company produced this toy... or what the toy is even called, but it shares a body with the diecast Garuban figure made by the same company. Since the head is attached only via magnet, I guess it was very easy to somply sculpt a new plastic head for the existing metallic bodies.

Fast forward to today, and you have Amapro creating a vinyl toy paying homage to this obscure little toy here.

Header //2 out of 5//:
I like the fact that this header is bigger than would normally be on this size figure. I also like the artwork found on the front... the style is immediately recognizable.

But the header is a generic header for Amapro apparently, and the name of the figure within seems to be simply stamped in the upper right corner. The back is just plastered with information and a cheesy spacescape.

Sculpt //3 out of 5//:
For me this is the strongest element of this toy. While it is lacking articulation, which is pretty significant (only the arms move... not even the head turns!), it is an interesting sculpt and a great homage to the obscure toy.

The textures all come together well here, with the chunky garbage limbs and torso meeting the smooth metal-like surfaces of the chest and shoulders, to the organic face and nicely molded hair. The sculptor elected to go with a simple star on his chest as opposed to a door like on the diecast. I'm not sure I like the star all that much because it seems out of place to me.

The horn on the forehead as well as the tusks protruding from his mouth are a nice touch I think. And the bejeweled eyes are just great, as they were on the old toy.

The vinyl isn't the best quality, but it is nice and solid. The figure is also well balanced, which is good since you cannot position the legs at all.

Paint //4 out of 5//:
Nice, classic kaiju style giving highlight where needed and not going overboard. There are quite a few colors here surprisingly with the darker blue laid over the lighter blue vinyl, as well as the nice gold and silver metallics as the main highlight, and even some darker, sludgier silver on the knees and elbows.

Value //?? out of 5//:
I cannot remember what I paid for this as it has been quite some time! I don't really see them pop up all that often, which either says it's a nice, solid release, or that no one cares to see them. I'd think if it ever showed up, you could find it for retail or so.

Overall //3.5 out of 5//:
Positives: Nice paint, interesting character, cool homage to an obscure Japanese toy.

Negatives: No articulation except for shoulders, vinyl isn't nice and smooth

I've decided to get rid of the Coolness category because it sounds lame. I can just talk about it here!

This toy isn't the greatest, but it's quirky and cool nonetheless. I like the paint, and gorillas and junk monsters are always OK in my book. You won't regret picking this one up if you like what it looks like here.

1 comment:

ultralex said...

I can't believe I just saw this post for the first time! I had something exactly like this planned for my own blog (astromonster) and never got around to it. I'm glad you did the breakdown--bravo!