Wednesday 7 September 2011

Toybox REVIEW: S.H. Figuarts Shinken Red

For my 50th toy review on this site I come to yet another toyline I've been meaning to look into for a while - Bandai's S.H. Figuarts line. While many of the line's Kamen Rider figures have tempted me in the past, I currently lack the fan knowledge of Kamen Rider to jump on any impulse purchases (this WILL change in the future though), a Super Sentai figure was a whole different story. I originally planned to pass on Shinken Red (as Blue, Green, Yellow and Pink were all exclusives), but when it was revealed that Bandai had plans to do more Super Sentai figures in the line, Shinken Red became a necessary beginning to a collection of (hopefully) all the red Sentai. If you haven't guessed already by the way, Shinken Red is from the series Samurai Sentai Shinkenger.

While admittedly the suit is relatively simple in design, the sculpt of the figure is gorgeous. Every detail is perfect, and the matte finish both looks and feels beautiful. Some of the joints are quite obvious on the figure (such as the waist, shoulders and hips) but this in no way impedes on the overall aesthetic of the figure. It is quite possibly the best looking Super Sentai/Power Rangers toy to date.

As the line promises, Shinken Red boasts an incredible range of articulation. I apologise that my pictures do not truly express this, as the joints system in taking a little bit of getting used too...especially in the shoulders department. While the hinged shoulder pieces attached to ball-jointed arm pieces is a great feat of toy-engineering, it does at times feel like too much pressure will cause the shoulders to snap (this picture floated around the internet at the time of release, and I did not want a repeat of it). The rest of the figure doesn't suffer from the same problem, with the joints able to move about naturally and, dare I say it, almost lifelike. The hands can feel difficult to remove at first (quite a bit of force is sometimes required to pop the hand of the ball on the wrist) but after a while you come to realise that rather than it being a case of feeling like the figure is about the break, its more that the hands fit on nice and securely.

Other than the variety of extra hands, also included with Shinken Red is a ShinkenMaru (complete with removable disc), a shodophone, a folded and unfolded Shishi origami and of course, an enormous Rekka Daizantou. The sculpting and detailing on the Rekka Daizantou is just as good as Shinken Red himself (it even comes complete with a spinning disc attached), but can be a bit of a pain to pose with. Shinken Red is more than capable of hold the weapon freely if you're careful with posing, but some of the more action-y poses will certainly require the aid of a stand. And looking at the sheer size of Rekka Daizantou, this seems like a pretty fair trade-off.

I may still have to get used to the articulation a bit more for dynamic posing, but I am completely in love with this figure. The overall quality and attention to detail in the S.H. Figuarts line is simply staggering, and I certainly plan to buy a lot more figures from the line in the future. The Gokaigers are all on preorder (bar Gokai Silver, who is yet to be given a release date), with Gokai Red to be released this month. Following that, I hope the Super Sentai franchise has a long life within the Figuarts line, and that at the very least we eventually see all 35 red senshi. Shinken Red is a MUST HAVE figure for fans of the series and/or franchise, and also comes highly recommended to any Power Rangers fans looking for a high-end alternative to the Power Rangers Samurai fans that are currently hitting shelves across the globe.

No comments: