Wednesday 16 January 2013

Toybox REVIEW: S.H. Figuarts Gokai Christmas

SH Figuarts Gokai Christmas 01

While all six members of the Kaizoku Sentai Gokaiger crew have been available in Bandai's S.H. Figuarts line for almost a year now, that doesn't mean there aren't still a few more figure possibilities for the 35th anniversary Super Sentai team. While the most obvious release would have probably Gokai Silver's gold mode, online store had some different (and more festive) plans for their exclusive figure. With a release date in December last year, its only fitting that the figure in question is Gokai Christmas - a special one-off suit that appeared in episode 44 of the series when Gokai Silver combined the powers of the Gokai Red and Green ranger keys.

SH Figuarts Gokai Christmas Box Front

SH Figuarts Gokai Christmas Box BackSH Figuarts Gokai Christmas Insert Tray

In true Christmas fashion, Gokai Christmas comes in possibly the gaudiest box imaginable. A festive blend of red and green stripes, with the words "Gokai X'mas" emblazoned in white text with gold trimming. The front of the box also features the logo as a sign of its exclusiveness, while the back of the box features the figure in a variety of different poses.

SH Figuarts Gokai Christmas 02

SH Figuarts Gokai Christmas 03SH Figuarts Gokai Christmas 04

Upon opening up, I immediately realised how much I'd missed the excitement of a new Gokaiger figure. Even with a little bit of leg articulation limitation from the suit's jacket, the overall poseability of the Gokaiger body is still the best Super Sentai has to offer. The figure just oozes personality (whether you want some serious action poses or crazy Gai Ikari antics) and the added bicep-swivel gives the figure an added edge that previous (and later) figures have lacked. The two-sided colourscheme has been recreated perfectly, right down to the asymmetrical visor and gold logo on the helmet (although that should really be luminous yellow). While the red arm on my figure doesn't quite match the shade of red for the jacket, its only noticeable in certain lighting and an issue that could possibly vary from figure to figure.

SH Figuarts Gokai Christmas 05

SH Figuarts Gokai Christmas 07SH Figuarts Gokai Christmas 06

As far as accessories go, unfortunately it isn't anything we haven't already seen in previous Gokaiger releases. Included are 11 pairs of hands (including the usual closed fist/sword gripping/pistol gripping pairs and a few extravagant pose hands), a Gokai Saber, a Gokai Pistol, the Gokai Christmas ranger key in flipped and unflipped forms and exchangeable barrels for the weapons. There's no unique or character-specific items included (or even a Gokai Cellular), but then Gokai Christmas never really had any specific items in his fleeting appearance. While there is an impressive level of detail on the ranger keys, its a little disappointing that there wasn't anything unique included with this release...items such as a scale Gokai Galleon Buster may never see production. However I suppose its somewhat understandable that Bandai may not want to include what would be such a sought-after item with an exclusive release that wasn't from the Tamashii webstore.

SH Figuarts Gokai Christmas 08

SH Figuarts Gokai Christmas 09SH Figuarts Gokai Christmas 10

So what's the verdict on Gokai Christmas? Well, that all depends on just how much of a completist you are. Gokai Christmas was a throwaway character in a Christmas-themed episode. A great throwaway character in a great Christmas-themed episode, but still. There's very little to fault about the figure itself and the paint job is pretty flawless, but the lack of anything truly unique in the accessories might put casual collectors off putting their money down on an exclusive release. I'm giving it an average rating just because on the grand scale of things it probably isn't a necessaries purchase, but if you love Gokaiger just as much as I do you might want to throw a bit more onto that 3 out of 5 rating.

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