Earlier this week I reviewed Gamera and Viras from the Konami Figumate Gashapon line. You can read that review right Here, but today I’m taking a look at the remaining three figures from that series. Although Gamera fought quite a few monsters during the Showa era (60’s-70’s) the line only presented four villains for him. They are among his most famous and today we look at the final three.


Gamera’s three remaining foes are amongst his best. First there is the infamous Gyaos which is the creature Gamera has fought more than anyone. Next is the lesser known Zigra who combines birds and sharks. Finally we have Guiron, the most recognizable Kaiju of Gamera’s early era. How do these SD versions of the characters stack up in these Gashapon toys?


Packaging:
As before, these are blind boxed. You don’t know which Gamera toy you’ll get on the inside. However, the package is pretty nice as it does show you what all characters are available and tells a little bit about them.

There are five figures in all and as you know, you’ve gotta catch them all. If you don’t, who else will? Exactly.

The back of the package has a lot of writing on it. I’ll assume that’s either explaining about the toys or warning you not to swallow them. There are a lot of small pieces on these toys. That picture that looks like Pac-Man I think is telling you that these aren’t power pellets.

Articulation:
The articulation isn’t abundant but it is pretty good for a Gashapon. You get points at all of the major areas allowing quite a bit of posing for these tiny figures. Remember, most of these guys are at 3 inches or below.

You have cut joints at the neck, arms, legs and ankles. You have to put the arms, legs and head on separately. Remember to boil and pop these. Oddly enough Guiron comes 95% assembled. I guess he’s special.

I’m not really sure why they make you assemble these yourself. Perhaps that’s “part of the fun”, but it seems a bit silly. It’s not super hard to put them together, but the box is big enough that the whole thing could come assembled.

Japan seems to like doing that though. They sell lots of models and stuff that aren’t fully assembled. Must be a cultural thing.

Sculpt:
Each figure looks really great. Gyaos’ design in the Showa era had him with a look that nearly was SD in nature, so you really can’t tell he’s supposed to be super deformed at all. He has the giant head, the triangle beak, it’s all here.


Polly want a cracker?

Even though I loved the Kaneko modern designs of the Gyaos, I must admit that the classic Gyaos looks great here. The paint work is exceptional around the eyes as well as the wings and chest. He’s a simple figure but every bit of paint on him really pops.

Zigra is one of the lesser known Gamera villains as he appeared in Gamera’s seventh film once Gamera was sort of starting to run out of steam. He’s a odd villain as he’s a shark creature but he sort of looks like a giant bird. I believe Daiei probably had a really cool plan for him but their costume just never quite delivered.

Surprisingly, Zigra looks quite good here. Because of the odd design of his character, he doesn’t really look SD either. As I said in my original review, these guys are barely SD at all and that’s a good thing. Zigra is really one of the more complex sculpts in the line with plenty of sharp angles and ridges.

Paint work on Zigra is impressive. He has a nice wash over certain parts of him while the rest is cast in the appropriate color. Zigra is ready for battle. I really liked the idea of Zigra as he comes from a planet where fish eat people as opposed to people eating fish. He hoped to make Earth his cattle farm, with humans playing the part of cows. Thankfully Gamera was there to beat his ass.

One part sad dog, one part butcher knife Guiron is probably Gamera’s most recognizable Kaiju foe. Guiron may be one of the most recognizable Kaiju in the entire genre. He has these strange looking eyes and this big knife on his head. He walks on all fours, but can stand up as well. He’s really quite unique.

Guiron is one of Gamera’s toughest foes and he actually took it to Gamera and a few other monsters. He’s very nicely represented here. Just Google a picture of Guiron and then look at this toy. It’s identical. He’s like a shrunk down version of the big man.

He’s made so that you can stand him up or put him on all fours. He looks pretty good in both ways. I’m very glad they didn’t mold him so that he had to be on all fours. Several other Guiron toys don’t allow him to stand up.

Aside from having a giant knife for a head, Guiron has the coolest power of any Kaiju…. He’s able to shoot freaking Chinese throwing stars from his head! That’s right, he can shoot ninja stars from his HEAD! As if having a knife head wasn’t cool enough.

This is represented here by having a panel on both sides of his head that can be pulled off to reveal his stars. Absolutely accurate to the way it was in the movie. It’s little things like this that show Konami wasn’t just cranking out some cheap Gashapon toys, but actually putting some time and attention into these guys. That’s really nice to see because so many Kaiju toys in Japan are painfully inaccurate, but not these.

Accessories:
We get another great array of accessories for each figure again. Everyone comes with the same stand as last time, but they also get unique accessories to their character. Konami really pulled out all the stops here.


Gyaos gets his laser. It fits into his mouth much like Gamera’s fire breath did. It’s a simple accessory but it works well. There is actually a bit of color distortion on the ray, showing off that it starts weak and then gets more powerful. It may look odd because it’s so straight and rigid but that’s how Gyaos laser beam breath appeared in the films.


Zigra gets his spaceship and much like Viras, it’s perfectly to scale. What’s even cooler though is the detail put into this spaceship. It’s got translucent material inside of it and has all these multicolored jewels on the top. Once again it looks like it flew right off the screen and into the palm of your hand.


Zigra actually arrived via his spaceship so it’s an important accessory to have.


Guiron gets probably the most obscure, but perhaps coolest accessory. In the movie, Guiron charges at Gamera and ends up getting his knife head stuck in a rock. Guiron’s accessory is a rock with a slot in it so you can plug him in and have him stuck upside down. How cool is that?! Plus he has the removeable pieces to reveal his stars.

Additional Notes:
When I reviewed the first two figures, I heard a lot of people say that they just had to get that Gamera. However, they didn’t seem to care as much about the other monsters. I felt that way too to an extent. Let me tell you, these other monsters are cool. You really need to get them all.


Gamera’s monsters aren’t as cool as Godzilla’s, but they all have a real charm to them. They look great in this format and guys like Guiron have so many posing capabilities. These make great conversation pieces or desktop trinkets.

Value:
I paid about $6 a piece for these but only because I bought the full set. It’s cheaper that way and I think it’s probably the best route to go. If you’re looking to buy them individually, Zigra tends to be the cheapest. Apparently he’s the least popular.


“Gimme back my UFO!”

“Nope.”


These guys are around at various prices and most places charge more for the more popular characters. There is also a few places that sell them blind boxed, so you can take a gamble. For my money it makes more sense to just order all five of them.

Score Recap:
Packaging – 7
Sculpting – 7
Articulation – 6
Accessories – Spaceship (Zigra), Laser Breath (Gyaos), Rock Base (Guiron), Stars (Guiron) Stand (All)
Value – 7
Overall – 7 out of 10

These guys are a real blast and might be my favorite Gashapon toys to date. It’s nice to have a whole mini collection of Showa-style Gamera villains. It’s a shame they didn’t make Jiger and Barugon but it’s no big loss. All of the interesting monsters are presented here.


After all these years, I still look back…with wonder.

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