Saturday, May 10, 2008

Penguin Pandemonium and Other Dream Rocketry

I felt like using a lot of syllables in today's title.

Yajima-san of Dream Rocket has been a busy fellow in recent months, having released several new items over the past month. This is more than I've seen from him in a while, so I hope he will not succumb to the demands of the American market and will continue to keep his releases few and sweet.

Ok, ok, so here we go...

At Superfestival 46, which was held at the Tokyo Science Museum on April 29th (a Tuesday!), the star of the show was an 'update' of the original Kamen no Ninja Akakage kaiju, Gabari. Supposedly limited to 10 pieces sold, this Gabari features metallic colors sprayed over the solid grey vinyl also used for the first release. While the Max Toy Co. version of Gabari is beautiful, I feel this rendering is a bit truer to the original style of the monster. Also, puppeteer of the original suit, Hotta Shinzou, was on-hand for autographs.

Unreported was a lottery sale of eight one-off Razor Pegimons. I've heard these were sold lucky-draw style with numbered tickets given out early on the morning of Superfest. Quite a few have shown up on YJA listings- while most listings indicate a run of eight pieces, I think the truth is that this is most likely a series of eight one-offs, because each piece is numbered "Eight pieces, First/Second/Third, etc." on its header card. Sadly for the unpopular Pegimon, most have gone unsold...

Here are a few of the Pegimons that I have seen:

No. 1 of 8:

No. 5 of 8:

No. 6 of 8:

This was noted by the seller to be one of the more popular colors of the Pegimon. Not hard to see why, as the metallic silver is quite fitting on this sculpt.

No. 7 of 8:

Pretty cool- looks like a nod to Gigan, which I believe was the inspiration for the Razor Pegimon design.

No. ?? of 8:

Perhaps it is just the lighting, but I found this one to be particularly striking- almost looks like it's made from red lacquered wood.

No. ?? of 8:

On May 5th, the final World Hobby Festival was held at Big Sight in Tokyo. The sole Dream Rocket offering was this clear orange Doguma with red, black and gold paint. Doguma is my favorite Dream Rocket sculpt, but this one didn't really catch my eye- perhaps because of the similarity to the original colorway.

Ningyoushi also recently featured a clear Balbagon with clear pink paint sloshed inside the toy... pretty cool effect, but it doesn't seem well-suited to the detailed sculpt. The regular clear version is pretty interesting, though, and I may pick that up one day.