Hello, and welcome to All Your Monies, where The Glorio Blog’s resident toy and figure collecting crew (and Aqua (and Iro)) will run down the last week’s new pre-orders, turning a loving or scathing eye over what’s been put out for you to spend your hard earned cash on. This week there’s a strong new contender for ‘worst thing ever featured in one of these columns’. NSFW obviously.
figma Tomoyo Daidouji (Card Captor Sakura)
Max Factory, June 2016, ¥5,371
Zigg: Tomoyo is the greatest and best character in all of the world and I’m pretty delighted that she’s showing up in figma form. Probably the biggest criticism that you could level against this figure is that the accessories are so sparse, but on the other hand, what else exactly could you give her. At least what we do have packed in is spot on, the smiling face and the hand on the cheek being perfect recreations of the show’s art. Too expensive as usual but still a wonderful, wonderful thing to behold. Now where’s Syaoran?
Aqua: Tomoyo is super duper cute, and while the sub-par quality figma treatment does her already simplistic design no favours, I do like the possibility of seeing her film and fangirl over everything under the horizon, because making silly dioramas is obviously the figma’s sole raison d’être. My biggest gripe is with the faces, though it’s likely that has more to do with Clamp’s art style than with Max Factory’s craftsmanship. And honestly, do we need a better Tomoyo figure if you can’t pose it to sneak up on people?
Iro: Was this character important enough to deserve a figma? All she did was make clothes for Sakura, right? (Disclaimer: All of my knowledge of Cardcaptors is from the crappy English dub)
G.E.M. James & Meowth (Pokemon)
Megahouse, April 2016, ¥5,500
Zigg: Terrific as you’d expect, and I really like the dynamism of these two as oppose to the more static, classy Jessie and Wobuffet. My only possible issue here is that James looks really really young – not sure if it’s the pose or the slightly rounder face as opposed to Misty, but he’s practically boyish here. Still, that’s not necessarily a bad look and figure has such great joie de vivre it’s impossible to dislike.
Aqua: There’s a bunch of great Pokémon figures out there already, but hey, how can you skip out on the true heroes of the story? Like Jessie before him, James’ overly excited facial expression looks a bit silly in plastic (Where is his nose?) but as far as the rest is concerned, this is one hell of a figure for a democratic price.
Iro: If you’re getting the Jessie from a few weeks ago, then you’re obligated to pick this up too. Fun fact: in the English dub, Jessie and James share voice actors with Misty and Brock.
Kazuya Miyuki (Ace of Diamond)
Di Molto Bene, April 2016, ¥14,800
Zigg: I don’t klnow much about Ace of Diamon, except that all of my fujoshi friends adore it. What’s interesting though, is Di Molto Bene, purveyors of all things JoJo, stepping out of their comfort zone with a really rather impressive piece. From the confident pose to the astonishing detail on the catchers gear (check out the stitching on that glove!) this is a bravura piece of work, and I’d be really interested in seeing the company develop a line of male figures outside of their stalwart franchise.
Aqua: Di Molto Bene are best known for their JoJo figures, which is pretty fitting, given that Kazuya here is dressed a bit like a JoJo character, with that same muscular sheen on his leg protection thingies and the plating on his armour stuff (Is it obvious that I don’t know jack about baseball? Or JoJo?). Obviously, the pose is a bit less fabulous here, but that only draws more attention to the sheer attention to detail in Di Molto Bene’s handiwork (Those shoes! That glove!). All of Kazuya’s equipment looks like it was made out of different materials, and for a figure like this to be able to stand uptight on tiny spikes like that had to be quite the challenge. Highly recommended for fans.
Iro: I have no clue what Ace of Diamonds is, other than that it’s apparently a baseball anime. I was also under the impression that Di Molto Bene only made JoJo stuff, but I guess not?
Shiro: Swimsuit Style (No Game No Life)
Aquamarine, June 2016, ¥13,800
Zigg: This is so so bad, not just from an ethical standpoint but also just from the fact it looks like total and utter garbage. Why is her head so enormous? Why are her hips wider than her shoulders? Why do her legs look like twigs? It looks like a figure that got caught in between morphing from a super-deformed style into a normal scale and then just stayed there. Just looking at it makes me wince.
Aqua: Okay, I obviously don’t have to tell you that this figure is so, so wrong from both a ethical and an anatomical point of view, but credit where it’s due, I do love the vibrant colours at work here. No Game, No Life‘s sole redeeming value was Atsuko Ishizuka’s onslaught of oversaturated visuals (see also: HaNaYaMaTa) and Aquamarine, for better or worse have managed to turn the show’s signature pastel gradients into a very striking palette. On the other hand, this is a sullen, hydrocephalic thirteen-year-old in a tiny bikini.
Iro: Anime was a mistake.
Shenron Big Cushion (Dragon Ball)
Bandai, March 2016, ¥29,990
Zigg: OK that’s a LOT of money, but if you want the chance to own a body pillow that isn’t embarrassing in the usual ways (but is embarrassing in an entirely different way) then there won’t be many finer than this.
Aqua: That is a lot of money for a stuffed animal. On the other hand, it is a two-meter long stuffed animal of an awesome dragon.
Iro: Alright everyone, I’m going to set this straight: Shenron could revive any number of people from the dead, but only once (I believe originally, this was an “any wish can only be made once” thing, but nobody watched Dragon Ball so who cares). Porunga, the Namekian Dragon, could grant three wishes, and could revive people from the dead with no limit, but only one person at a time (so there was the thing in the Frieza Saga where they used Porunga’s wish to revive only Piccolo, which meant Kami was revived too, bringing back the Earth Dragon Balls and reviving Shenron, who they used to revive everyone whose death was caused by Frieza, thus reviving the recently-dead Guru, allowing them to use Porunga’s final wish to transport everyone but Goku and Frieza to Earth before Namek exploded). When they brought Dende back to Earth to replace Kami and make a new Shenron, they changed the rules so that Shenron had two wishes and could revive any number of people from the dead any number of times.