Trendmasters Gamera
4 Inch Scale
By: Trendmasters

Shusuke Kaneko’s take on Gamera redefined the relationship between Gyaos and Gamera, making the Gyaos become not just Gamera’s arch nemesis, but immortally linked at the hip. It was an interested interpretation and greatly raised the stock of Gyaos moreso than perhaps even Gamera. Trendmasters version of Gyaos once again uses the classic Gyaos bio, but definitely reflects the aesthetic changes to the character of the Heisei era.

From the bowels of a fiery volcano, Gyaos awakens from his slumber craving blood! Emitting a powder that, if inhaled, can douse the blazing breath of his ferocious foes, Gyaos renders his enemies defenseless – then strikes with his sonic beam! Even when he retreats from a battle with body parts blown off, Gyaos regenerates the limbs and returns… to win the war! In aerial battles at speeds oin excess of Mach 3, can Gamera survive Gyaos flesh-shredding sonic beam?

It really only makes sense that Kaneko would use Gyaos as the arch nemesis of the reinvented Gamera, as Gyaos appeared more in the classic films than any other monster, in one form or another. Trendmasters naturally had to make a Gyaos figure, since he was the only other “new” design they had.

The packaging is the same minimalist, and somewhat cheap version of the Trendmasters’ Godzilla card backs that are on all the Gamera figures. There is a large photo of Gamera’s head from the film, Guardian of the Universe, but actual Gamera logo doesn’t appear anywhere but the plastic bubble.

The back of the package is the exact same as the one for Gamera. All the figures share the same card, with only the inner nameplate changing. Once again, the bio is terrific and fairly in-depth for the character, if not quite era accurate.

Right off the bat you’ll notice that Gyaos is a dark purple color. That’s not entirely accurate, but the creature has always had a slight purplish hue in the films. He’s clearly brown in the Gamera: Guardian of the Universe film, however, so I’m not sure why Trendmasters went with the purple color, but it is a familiar color to Gyaos.

While the vintage Gyaos character was definitely more purple, this figure is definitely based on the modern design of the character, not the classic. The head is angular, but not so much of a triangle. The head has that odd shape about it, but there is a lot of detail. The eyes in particular, show that Trendmasters were capable of really bringing a lot of texture and detail to the designs.

It’s very well designed and although it does have a few touches of creative liberties throughout, there’s no mistaking that this is a Gyaos. What exact version could be debated, however.

The head sculpt definitely seems to be channeling more of the up close shots of Gyaos from the film as opposed to the larger suitimation battle scenes. In the film, Gyaos claws were a reddish brown, but here they appear white. Again this seems to reflect the classic era Gyaos in paint, but not design. There is a thick wash over the entire figure, similar to what we had with Gamera but even heavier.

The design is well detailed, with wrinkles and veins throughout. The feet are particularly well done and he stands even better than Gamera, which is a feat considering the design. The winged tail is included as well, again a nod to how accurate these sculpts are.

Once again these are the budget versions, which have the same buttons and speakers as the electronic ones, but without the function. It doesn’t take away from the sculpt much, but the missile launcher in the mouth, this time does.

Because of the small head of Gyaos, there is a hole running through the entire thing. In the front it’s well hidden from many angles, but in the back it’s a bit more obvious. I suppose you could stick some sculpy on it or something.

Despite the color issues, it’s a great sculpt. I do think the missile launcher mouth is much more distracting this time. Gyaos doesn’t look as right as Gamera, but this character is seemingly hard to capture. Because there have been so many versions of Gyaos, I’m more inclined to let the color errors slide. This is sort of a hodgepodge of classic/Heisei and Hyper Gyaos in design. It’s kind of a neat addition to the collection, in that sense.

The articulation is nothing to write home about here. It’s not much different than a vinyl would be, although it’s certainly easier to maneuver. Gyaos has swivels at the arms, legs and tail. Once again, a neck cut is sorely missed.

It’s a shame the articulation in the neck is impeded. I imagine that had something to do with the electronics, but given that they’re not even included here… It’s a missed opportunity.

Even without the neck articulation, this has some pretty good play value. Almost all the Gyaos vinyl figures lack movement at the wings, so that added movement here is welcomed and appreciated. The leathery texture of the wings is also an added bonus. The wings feel like what I actually imagine Gyaos wings to feel like.

Once again our only accessory is the “laser beam” missile. It looks like phallic purple barf.

As I said in the Gamera review, this seems like a wasted bit of potential. Had the beam actually looked like Gyaos beam, similar to the Gashapon Gyaos I reviewed last year, this throw away accessory could have been a bit cooler. Kaiju usually do emit death rays from their mouths, so a missile launcher isn’t a terrible idea, it’s just not very well implemented here.

The real design flaw here is that the missile sticks out the back of his head. In fact you actually have to turn it to the left to make it fire. It’s strange, I’ve never had a missile launcher work quite like this one functions. The clear part should have been purple and the purple part should have been a translucent yellow and this would have actually been acceptable. Even protruding out the back of his head!

Second only to Gamera, Gyaos is pretty hard to find. I imagine his popularity stems from the character being fairly popular as well. Again, the best price you’re likely to find is about the $15 range. I wouldn’t pay much more than that, unless you’re just desperate to have these. At that kind of price, they aren’t bad though.

Score Recap:
Packaging – 7
Sculpting – 6
Articulation – 6
Accessories – Ray Beam Missile
Value – 7
Overall – 6.5 out of 10

Trendmasters’ Gyaos is still a good figure, but not quite as good as Gamera. I went ahead and knocked off a 1/2 point just to hammer that argument home, but essentially this figure is GOOD toy. Everything is sort of relative to what it’s around and around similar figures this guy would rank pretty well. It’s fairly accurate and well made for the time it was released. Had Trendmasters just gotten a few more things right on this guy, he would have been stellar.

9 Responses to Trendmasters Gyaos Figure Review

  • CompyRex says:

    Want want want want want. Still glad I got that Bandai Gyaos a few years ago. I was never a real Gamera fan, the kaiju were all cool but I was a Godzilla guy and the only Gamera movie I saw was the Gyaos one (the title escapes me…) which was pretty good.

  • CompyRex says:

    I mean to say that it was one of the Heisei Gyaos ones, which I believe there were two of.

  • CompyRex says:

    Whoops, typed wrong email I suppose, lol.

  • Bill says:

    I agree with you Newton; The color on this seems wrong. At least from your photos, for, as I have said, I've NEVER seen these for sale, anywhere!

  • I'm curious if there wasn't a style guide that put him in this color, or if they had bad reference art. They may have just decided to do their own thing, though. It's definitely a blend of the two Gyaos.

  • If it was the modern one, it'd be Gamera: Guardian of the Universe. That whole trilogy is definitely worth tracking down.

  • Mecha-Shiva says:

    I blame the neon coloring due to it being toys from the 90's!Great review!

  • Well I don't think it's really neon, exactly. You could definitely make a case that in a few shots from the film, the character has some purple tint. It could be a case like Dapol's K-9, where their reference art looked a different color. Which is why we got a green K-9!

    You could be on to something though, as brown was NOT a color deemed very kid friendly and Trendmasters would often brighten a color palette to make it more toy-like. Every color of the Trendmasters Godzilla figures is a bit vibrant.

  • guest says:

    Looks like crap no wonder trendmasters is out of bizniz

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