Friday, 16 November 2018

Movie REVIEW: GARO: Kami no Kiba

GARO: Kami no Kiba

Even though fans were treated to the fantastic GARO: Vanishing Line anime earlier this year, it feels like it's been a while since the last proper GARO series. The last live-action entry in the ever-growing franchise was Zero: Dragon Blood back at the beginning of 2017, which being a Zero series (not that that's in any way a bad thing) was fairly low on Golden Knight action. 2018 did however kick off with a brand new movie entry, continuing the story of Ryuga Dougai in GARO: Kami no Kiba ("Fang of God").

Wednesday, 14 November 2018

Toybox REVIEW: S.H. Figuarts Ultraman Orb Dark


Release Date: October 2018
RRP: 5940 yen

If there's one thing Bandai Tamashii Nations like saving for their annual Tamashii Nation event figures, it's black repaints. Between Kamen Rider Joker, Proto-Drive, Dark Kabuto and Genm Level 2 there's definitely a predictable pattern to these sought-after exclusives. Tamashii Nation 2018 was absolutely no exception, not only presenting fans with the opportunity to own Kamen Rider Build's Hazard form but also their first S.H. Figuarts Ultraman exclusive. The first character to be released from the currently airing Ultraman R/B, S.H. Figuarts Ultraman Orb Dark (or to use his full name, Ultraman Orb Dark Noir Black Schwarz) is a repaint of the Ultraman Orb Origin figure previously released back in August 2017. 

Monday, 12 November 2018

Reviews in Time & Space: Doctor Who 11x06 - Demons of the Punjab

Doctor Who 11x06 - Demons of the Punjab

Since this current series of Doctor Who seems to be all about the simple stories, one about going back in time to visit your own relatives and the dangers that can bring about seemed almost inevitable. The show already did an excellent job of that back in 2005 with Father's Day, but the concept is so ingrained into science fiction culture that there's always room for a second go. Episode six of the 2018 series is entitled Demons of the Punjab, directed by Jamie Childs and written by Vinay Patel – making it the first episode this series without credited writing input from showrunner Chris Chibnall.

Saturday, 10 November 2018

Toybox REVIEW: S.H. Figuarts -Shinkocchou Seihou- Kamen Rider Ibuki


Release Date: August 2018
RRP: 7020 yen

In 2014 fans got one step closer to a full S.H. Figuarts Kamen Rider line up with the release of Shinkocchou Seihou Kamen Rider Hibiki, and though Kamen Rider Kiva was still nowhere in sight the fact Bandai Tamashii Nations were finally tackling Kamen Rider Hibiki suggested its other characters wouldn't be too far behind. What followed instead was nearly four years of silence, prompting fears that Ibuki, Todoroki and Zanki may be condemned to Figuarts limbo. However it's now 2018 and all of that has changed, most of all because Kiva is FINALLY coming. But before then the other three core Hibiki Oni are on the way, starting with S.H. Figuarts Shinkocchou Seihou Kamen Rider Ibuki! Ibuki was a Tamashii web exclusive release, and Todoroki and Zanki will both follow suit next year.

Wednesday, 7 November 2018

Toybox REVIEW: Nendoroid Guardian


Release Date: August 2018
RRP: 5370 yen

With Breath of the Wild going on to become of the most popular and beloved Legend of Zelda titles of all time, there was no way that Good Smile Company were going to stop at just one figure. While fans are still sadly waiting for a properly proportioned Figma release, the Nendoroid line definitely went all out with its version of Link. So what's next? Zelda? Maybe one of the four Champions? Not quite. Instead we have the Nendoroid Guardian – the ancient six-legged automatons created by the Sheikah to help in the fight against Calamity Ganon. Unfortunately for Link, Ganon's malevolence is now in control – and the Guardians patrol Hyrule Castle ready to attack any invader.

Monday, 5 November 2018

Reviews in Time & Space: Doctor Who 11x05: The Tsuranga Conundrum

Doctor Who 11x05 - The Tsuranga Conundrum

Doctor Who series 11 has officially reached the halfway point, and for this week's episode the franchise is getting back to basics a bit. There's a spaceship, there's an alien, and there are also plenty of long corridors to be running down. The Tsuranga Conundrum is the fifth episode of the series, once again written by showrunner Chris Chibnall and directed by Jennifer Perrott. With "Team TARDIS" properly in place since the events of Arachnids in the UK, it's time for the adventures in space in time to truly begin.

Saturday, 3 November 2018

Series REVIEW: Denkou Chojin Gridman

Denkou Chojin Gridman

Tsuburaya Productions may be best known for the both Ultraman and the Ultra Series, but that isn't the only tokusatsu series they've given birth to in their 55 year history. There's also been the likes of Redman, Mirrorman, Jumborg Ace, Fireman and many, many more. But to the more casual Western fan around during the Power Rangers boom, there's one definitely more recognisable than the others – Gridman, alternatively its American-adaptation counterpart Superhuman Samurai Syber Squad. Denkou Chojin Gridman (also known as Gridman the Hyper Agent) is a 39-episode series produced between 1993 and 1994, and would be Tsuburaya's last non-Ultra giant series until 2006. The series has enjoyed something of a resurgence among fans lately, thanks to English subtitles being made available legally in the US through TOKU and of course more significantly Trigger's (currently airing) anime adaptation SSSS.Gridman.

Thursday, 1 November 2018

Toybox REVIEW: NECA Ultimate Chucky


Release Date: November 2017
RRP: $29.99/£29.99

Halloween has only just passed, and like many I've spent the last month or so getting into the spirit by revisiting some of my favourite horror films. And as far as gore-filled slasher fests go, the Chucky series is definitely the closest to my heart. During my rewatch of all seven films I came to the conclusion that the maniacal doll first seen in 1988's Child's Play needed plastic representation in my collection, and wandering around a convention recently NECA stepped in to provide just that. Joining the likes of Freddy, Jason and Leatherface, NECA's Ultimate Chucky figure is designed to be the very best among their ever-popular horror range.

Tuesday, 30 October 2018

Reviews in Time & Space: Doctor Who 11x04 - Arachnids in the UK

Doctor Who 11x04 - Arachnids in the UK

With space and time both neatly ticked off this week Doctor Who returns home for another present day adventure, and it's sure to be one that'll get certain fans' spines tingling. Arachnophobia sufferers beware, because there's Arachnids in the UK and in 2018 things are going to be looking a little more realistic than they did back in 1974's Planet of the Spiders. The fourth episode in series 11 was written by showrunner Chris Chibnall, and directed by Sallie Aprahamian.

Thursday, 25 October 2018

Anime REVIEW: FLCL: Alternative


Some anime series wait years to get a sequel. Others wait years and then not only get one, but two almost simultaneously. This was exactly the case for beloved cult classic FLCL (aka Fooly Cooly), which after 18 years didn't only just come back in the form of the six-part FLCL: Progressive, but also spun off in a different direction with another six-part series - FLCL: Alternative. Like Progressive this new series doesn't have any input from original co-creators Gainax, instead coming solely from Production I.G. in collaboration with Toho and Adult Swim. As the series was first released through Adult Swim, for the time being only the English dubbed version is available to Western fans. We did however get a taste for Alternative in its original language earlier in the year, with the first episode airing subtitled as part of Adult Swim's annual April Fools' Day shenanigans.