Thursday, 20 October 2022

Top 5: Most Wanted Shokugan Modeling Project (SMP) Releases

Top 5: Most Wanted Shokugan Modeling Project (SMP) Releases

Whether you've accepted Shokugan Modeling Project into your hearts or still go about calling it by its original Super Mini-Pla name, there's no denying that Bandai's premium super robot model kit line has been doing some incredible things over the past few years. From its various Super Sentai and tokusatsu releases to a plethora of anime bots, SMP has become a key place for collectors to get their robot fix. But even with everything they've covered so far that's just a fraction of what Japan has to offer, and that's without counting the 30+ years of Super Sentai still untouched by them. So for this month's top five I'm looking at the things I'd most like to see join the Shokugan Modeling Project line, most of which would probably be released as overpriced Premium Bandai exclusives but I'd happily buy regardless.

5. Daitetsujin 17 (Daitetsujin 17)
Daitetsujin 17
While that shiny new Soul of Chogokin GX-101 Daitetsujin 17 figure is still looking awfully tempting, it would be quite nice to have a smaller and cheaper alternative on the market as well. Ever since checking out the first two episodes on the Toei Tokusatsu World YouTube channel I've really taken a shine to Ishinomori's 1977 series, and given the Showa era Super Sentai mecha the line has already put out the big blue bot would be right at home here. It doesn't have to be quite as comprehensive as the SOC when it comes to accessories, but looking at their Leopardon getting all those mini-vehicles along with it doesn't seem like too much to ask either.

4. Dolgiran/Dol (Space Sheriff Gavan)
Dolgiran/Dol
Despite having a prototype shown off at a previous Tamashii Nations event, Bandai being Bandai have gone pretty quiet on the status of their Soul of Chogokin "Super Dimensional Lightspeed Ship" Dolgiran/"Electronic Star Beast" Dol figure. So if that isn't happening, why not shrink it down a bit and rework it for SMP? The Metal Heroes franchise remains unrepresented in the line, so there's no better place to start than with the space craft of the original Space Sheriff. Not only do you get a cool-looking (not to mention retro-tastic) pair of space ships but one of them can also turn into a mechanical dragon! Bandai haven't done much in the way of Gavan merchandise as of late but this would go great alongside the various S.H. Figuarts and Tamashii Lab pieces they've done in the past.

3. Kabuterious/Kuwaga Titan (B-Fighter Kabuto)
Kabuterious/Kuwaga Titan
Admittedly this is largely due to my nostalgia for Beetleborgs and Beetleborgs Metallix (B-Fighter Kabuto is certainly on my watchlist though), but with the surprise influx of Juuko B-Fighter items Bandai have been putting out lately why not add its sequel series to the SMP line as well? While there might not be a great deal of detail or intricacy to the two Shell Gods, how can you not love these big stumpy beetle bots? And though the odds of them being ported over America and sold under the Beetleborgs name is close to zero, there would still be additional interest in the pair because of that link.

2. Magiking (Mahou Sentai Magiranger)
Magiking
Although the Super Robot Chogokin figure that came out a decade or so ago is still pretty great, that's getting on in age now and the lack of a combination gimmick really means the design hasn't been done justice. There are a lot of fantastic robots in the Super Sentai franchise but there was just something really fresh about Magiking – not just because of the various inspiration behind its components, but also the drastic difference in size between them. Throw in unique transformation scheme as well as the alternative MagiDragon combination and you've got something that's just begging for an SMP release. Magiranger missed out on articulated mini-pla by only a few years originally, now it's time to rectify that.

1. Ohranger Robo (Chouriki Sentai Ohranger)
Ohranger Robo
Again this might just be my childhood nostalgia and love for Power Rangers Zeo talking, but an Ohranger Robo that's been made with the same love as the rest of the Super Mini-Pla/Shokugan Modeling Project line would be an incredible item. Both Bandai of America and Hasbro have been letting things down on the Power Rangers side by releasing figures that don't do the design (or combination) justice, so it's about time Bandai of Japan stepped up and did the job properly. While I'd happily take all of the Chouriki Sentai Ohranger mecha in the line (Red Boxer especially), even if we only got Ohranger Robo I'd be happy. The best part is that the line has already dabbled in this era of Super Sentai 's history, so maybe it isn't actually that far away…

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What tokusatsu/anime mecha would you like to see join the Shokugan Modeling Project line? As always let me know, as well as any ideas you have for future top give pieces, in the comment section below!

2 comments:

Oar said...

All very good picks... It just so happened that my most personally beloved mecha just in terms of how cool and interesting it is, would be MagiKing. The giant winged robot wizard that can also double as five distinct creatures -and- a dragon? It's amazing and SMP taking a shot would be extra amazing.

baratacom said...

While I certainly do not disagree with the picks, my number one most want SMP release would be Daileon, especially now that my number two pick, Might Gaine, has already been done