Archive for japan

Tsuchinoko!

Posted in Kaiju misc., Yokai & Cryptids with tags , , , , , , on July 2, 2010 by REdYOdA

A legendary Japanese Monster in vinyl!

A creature myth not too unlike our ‘Bigfoot’ legend here in the US…many would argue that the Japanese Tsuchinoko is a real snake like creature that some have reported as even having mythical powers. Though, like Bigfoot, the Chupacabra, Nessie, the Yeti, etc…people have also claimed to have witnessed, took images, or actually captured the elusive snake creature…but like all of the other cryptozoologic creatures…science has yet to confirm it’s existence.

The real deal?


One of many variations that have been encountered…


Tsuchinoko (sue-chee-no-ko)…which translates to “Hammer Spawn” are said to be highly venomous, able to jump great distances, and also have the ability to bite onto their own tail and roll around like a wheel. Those who have encountered say they make high pitched squeaking sounds or screeches.

Among the even more strange legends about these funny looking snake monsters:

The ability to talk (though it usually tells lies, which makes sense, ’cause it’s a snake.) and a strange penchant for booze…

Let’s Party first…Ssssss….and then I’ll eat you!

A toy of a lying, drinking, evil mythical snake…had to have one!

M1-Go produced 3 versions of the beasties back in 2008 which they dubbed ‘UMA: Unidentified Mysterious Animal‘. The 8″ long 5″ high snakes came packaged in a box (with great artwork, see below!) which is also kind of unusual for these types of vinyl toys. Also included is a very shiny black presentation platform wrapped in a paper envelope…and as usual the vinyl quality and paint are right on par with M1-Go’s normal super high standards.  I don’t see these Tsuchinoko vinyls come up too often…but I was able to snag one in the last Morphy Auction.

M1-Go’s offerings…

Some pics of the one I received…

Box art front…


Box art back…


Out of the box…he’s not happy about this…


Got to be more careful…ouch!






That’s it for now…but if you do find yourself in the Japanese countryside…watch your step!



Kaiju Baragon!

Posted in Film Review, The Kaiju Art Collection, Tokusatsu with tags , , , , , , , , , on August 21, 2008 by REdYOdA

One terrible Triceratops!

Baragon Attacks!

I just saw Frankenstein vs Baragon again…it inspired me to complete a second Baragon for the Kaiju Art Collection. I actually don’t have a ‘Frankenstein’ vinyl…I gotta get on that!

I used the Marmit 2005 Para-Baby crawling version for the photograph.

Baragon makes his fearsome debut in 1965’s Frankenstein vs Baragon. The film, a homage of sorts, to the original Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, takes the monster to new heights… literally. This tokusatsu film see our ‘Frankenstein’ monster man grow to titanic heights.

The movie tells the story much in the same way as Shelley’s masterpiece… the kind-hearted monster is created under ominous circumstances, he is wrongly blamed for the horrible misdeeds of another, and finally he is persecuted by a fearful community.

Baragon plays the part of the antagonist in the film. An unthinking beast that attacks without compunction, Baragon attacks tiny hamlets and then vanishes by burrowing into the Earth. ‘Frankenstein’ is hip to the beasts wrongdoings and eventually the film’s title will come into play.

Having discovered that Baragon is truly responsible for the devastation…the finger-pointing human race now depends on their ‘monster’ to save them.

Click for original trailer!

This is a fun 1960’s monster movie with spectacular effects…don’t miss it!

Baragon makes numerous appearances in Godzilla films too:

Kaiju Maneki Neko!

Posted in The Kaiju Art Collection, Toy Reviews with tags , , , , , , , , on August 5, 2008 by REdYOdA

Kaiju Maneki Neko!

The Mutant ‘Lucky Cat’ or ‘Maneki Neko’* used in the Kaiju Art above is part of a series from one of the most well respected Japanese art toy producers… RealxHead.
The cute mutant cyclops cats come in 2.5″ or 7″ versions and come in a variety of colors.
There are also a few special colorways out there too… if one was inclined to do a little hunting.

RealxHead is responsible for bringing us quite a few legendary vinyl series: Pop Soda, Mutant Head, Mutant Evil, Mutant Chaos, Bigaro, Lucky Cats, and many more!  The paint, design, and vinyl quality of the varied figures is really superior.

I am particularly fond of the Mutant Chaos Series myself.  The Chaos series has some of the most intriguing colorways and variants… plus the figure itself is just so bad-ass!

If you happen to be into painting customs, like myself,…the Chaos Mutants are really a blast to paint too!

You know I look good!

RealxHead’s humble rise to fame started with a lone figure in 2003 called the ‘Oni Head’. Founded by artist Mori Katsura, the visionary toy company continued producing outlandish series after series, without ever compromising quality.
RxH gave the growing legions of die-hard fans some of the most amazing designs in the vinyl scene to date. Today, RxH’s figures usually sell out very quickly and continue to have exceptionally high collectability.

The RxH Mini Lucky Cats would be a great way for any newbies out there to get into vinyl collecting.
Why?…because they are produced by a very reputable Japanese toy producer , tracking down all of the colorways is a lot of fun, they look and display great…and best of all...the little kitty’s can be picked up for about $10 all over the internets!

With so many great vinyl toy designers, both East and West, it can be challenging to produce even ONE memorable new figure that will maintain it’s collectability… and hold our interests. With 5 years+ in business and a remarkable amount of releases…RealxHead has yet to disappoint!

Happy hunting!

Pray for more RxH!

Hint: start here…lucky

*Wikipedia entry on the history of traditional Maneki Neko HERE!

Calamari Calamity

Posted in Customs, The Kaiju Art Collection, Toy Reviews with tags , , , , , , , , , , on July 30, 2008 by REdYOdA

Header

I am a BIG fan of Mr.Frank Kozik.

I’ve been a fan since I first saw his hyper-colorful and wonderfully demented concert posters waaaay back, sorry Frank, I’m not saying your old…just…maybe I’m old..oh whatever…
I have a few of his silkscreen concert prints… I would plaster every wall with them if I could.
When I found out that Frank had got into vinyl..lets say I was more than a little excited!

THE CALAMARI:

My personal favorite vinyl creation of Frank’s are his IKA (Ika means Squid in Japanese).

The first release:  squidly creatures called IKA GILAS...an angry squid head & tentacles, produced in a variety of colorways and clear vinyls, and very cool! Next up are the SALARI IKA’s(working man- wage slave,and… remember ika?). Kozik, who designed these overworked squid men, teamed up with the fantastic toy producer Wonderwall for their ‘Kaiju For Grown Ups’ series to bring us these tasty beasties.
A real Salaryman…
The Salaryman

I really liked the Ika Gilas… but I must say… I REALLY liked the Salari Ika design!
Click thru to see my Kaiju Art featuing Kozik’s smartly dressed creation!

THE CALAMITY:

When the Salari’s were released in early ’08, I immediately acquired the glowing black suited version, the only version produced, of the white collar squid and… I love it.
Next…pre-SDCC ’08… I got my slimy hands on the Salary Ika in clear vinyl with an orange head & black highlights and… I love it!

Dammit!!!!! I jumped the gun…
Not realizing that Super7+Kozik+InTheYellow (I wonder who makes any $$$???) were releasing an SDCC ’08 Salari Ika version…exactly like MY clear Ika… but stuffed with shredded money! Dammit!!!!

Frank’s got so much money he’s shredding it up and putting it in his figures!
…I kid…I kid.

THE CURE:

I may still get one, but these don’t come cheap, so……since I already have this clear version…customize!

I’ve done a few customs before for myself and some friends. Time to get busy.
I love the their original ‘money’ idea, so I’m just going to tweak it ever so slightly… with Japanese YEN!

First…Hit eBay and track down ‘play’ YEN… Check! -I’m afraid I can’t shred any real yen.
Second…Get toy YEN from Japan… Check!
Third…Disassemble my favorite Calamari, break out hairdryer… Check!
Fourth…I have different sizes of YEN, so just…Stuffed Calamari! ...Check!
Finally finished! This will have to do for now…

Behold the Yen stuffed Salari Ika!!!

Click pic to summon the Giant Squid!
Salary Ika Part II!

I sure do wish I had the cool ‘squid money’ header card though..booo.

Regular pic of YEN custom…

Unprocessed photo

No YEN were harmed in the making of this squid.

…I must mention that there is another painted custom version of the Salari Ika, produced by the talented artist Leecifer, for StrangeKiss. This Salari Ika features original ‘One Night Only’ artwork that compliments the ‘rockin’ mollusk!

Check it out!

I‘ve seen Leecifer’s other customs and they are really something!

Who knew 2008 would see me up to my eyeballs in squid!

Thanks Frank!

EDIT: 8/1/08 Mr. Flynn and Mr. Kozik are a little bit richer. I went ahead & went over to Super7 and picked up Frank’s $$$ filled version…I just had to have that header card!

Rare Music & Themes!

Posted in Tokusatsu Music with tags , , , , , , , , on July 29, 2008 by REdYOdA

I’ve added a few choice tunes from my collection to the sidebar (scroll down).
The link will open a new window & play the song…hopefully.

ENJOY!

Ultraman Symphonic

Kikaida!

Posted in The Kaiju Art Collection, Tokusatsu with tags , , , , , , , , , , on July 27, 2008 by REdYOdA

The Hawaiian mega hit … from Japan!

Kikaida!
‘Jinzo ningen Kikaida’  or ‘Android Kikaida’ was created on the heels of the successful ‘Kamen Rider’ series in Japan. The original ‘Kikaida’ tokusatsu (live action/SFX) series will have a run of 43 episodes between 1972-1973. Outside of Japan the show sees huge success with audiences in Hawaii…where there is still quite a cult following today.

Kikaida (sometimes referred to as Kikaider) is an android created by a Dr. Komyoji while he and his daughter Mitsuko are held captive by the evil Professor Gil. The demented professor demands Dr. Kimyoji build him an army of robot monsters to takeover the world. Secretly the good doctor starts construction of a sympathetic humanoid robot named Jiro.

The fiendish professor becomes aware of the robot’s construction and Jiro is forced to fight Professor Gil’s mechanical henchmen… destroying the lab in a horrible fire. Jiro is able to defeat the robots and rescue Dr. Komyoji’s daughter Mitsuko, but unable to locate the doctor in the blaze.
The displaced doctor, whom develops amnesia, wanders from town to town, unknowing that Jiro and his children are close on his heels. Every episode will see Jiro transform into the combat android Kikaida and battle Professor Gil’s onslaught of killer robot monsters that hinder their search.

When we see Jiro transform into the powerful Kikaida, he is half blue and half red…due to his incomplete ‘Gemini’ circuit which allows him emotions. The android would be all blue if  Dr. Komyoji had completed him. The red half allows for a dark side to the character… that Professor Gil is all to happy to exploit by using a special flute that confuses Kikiada’s Gemini circuit… and his loyalties.
Kikaida is aided by his ‘sidemachine’ a  Kawasaki super-cycle with a sidecar.

One more thing…Jiro likes to play a little ditty on his guitar before kicking some evil robot ass!
Jiro & Guitar

For me, Kikaida is one of the better live-action shows…and it had a lot of heart! There is a lot more to this show than I can write about in a few paragraphs, so I hope you’ll check it out.
You’ll find that the series abounds with interesting characters, lots of creative robot monsters, great action, comedy (though much of it is unintentional), and near the end…some interesting plot twists! I’m not saying watching Kikaida is going to make you smarter or anything…it’s just a lot of fun!

The original series will see a continuation … ‘Kikaider 01’ in 1973-74 that will pit kikaida against his evil android nemesis Hakaider… introduced during the finale of the original series. The series will also get an anime treatment  in the year 2000.

DVD Boxset by JN Productions

I’ve linked titles in this post to the great site: Generation Kikaida… a well stocked source for this exciting tokusatsu series!

Visit the K.A.C. gallery!

Atelier G1 & MaxToy’s Hedorah Review!

Posted in Toy Reviews with tags , , , , , , , on July 26, 2008 by REdYOdA

I received my Hedorah from Mark Nagata today.
Here is my review…

The pollution munching Hedorah aka ‘the smog monster’ is one of my favorite Kaiju. I have a few versions of this horrifying monster in my ever growing collection and am always looking for new versions.

Hedorah hails from one of the more campy Godzilla films made: Godzilla vs Hedorah… released in 1971. The film features one of the most famous and reprehensible scenes… Godzilla flying by using his breath!
I’ll talk more about that and the movie in a later post…for now back to the figure…

Box arrives…Nice Artwork…”Giant Sludge Grown Up Form”…
Nice Box!

Signed too…

Okuda san the artist

What do we have here…

gonna need a hair dryer!

I free the well wrapped Hedorah and my favorite, new vinyl & fresh paint smell, hits me…ooohh yeah!
Signed feet 20/30…good number I suppose…You can really see the glitter!

Hedorah's smelly feet!

HOLY CRAP!!!

Atelier/Max Toy Hedorah!

This figure is stunning…truly the best Hedorah this collector has ever laid eyes on! The varied metallic colors over the black vinyl glitter base are breathtaking. I am also impressed by the sheer size of the figure (11-12 inches with a very long tail).
Oh, wait did I mention…the eyes…WOW! Two different colored translucent plastic eyes set in the vinyl really make this Hedorah come alive! Incredible detail on these Smog Monster peepers! Did I mention that each Hedorah is custom painted by Okuda-san himself, then hand signed/numbered on the box and feet… each Hedorah is slightly different and uniquely your own!
Well, I’ve probably gushed on enough about this guy. Only 30 pieces produced in this hand painted colorway.

I do see this figure becoming THE Hedorah to have in your collection…I know it will be a centerpiece of mine. Until you see this in person, you won’t truly appreciate the beauty and artistry in this piece.

I think there may be a few left of this soon to be legendary piece, so…HURRY and get over to Max Toy and try to score one!
Great job and thanks to Mark & Okuda-san! for making them available to us!

Click any Smog Monster Pic to visit the Gallery!

I like 70's music

But wait…there’s more…

crack rock?
Thanks goes out to Anthony who commented that I left out Hedorah’s damaged eye piece. Well Anthony, you’re right… I missed it ! The little eye piece is bagged, like a little silver crack rock, and stuffed in the tail piece.

I actually didn’t connect the tail as it didn’t fit on my shelf very well…it’s quite long.  Anyways, pic below…what great attention to detail!

Thanks again for reading Anthony …and for pointing this out!
Ouch!