Wednesday 14 May 2014

Toybox REVIEW: S.H. Figuarts Kamen Rider Black RX (Renewal)

After Kamen Rider Black received a brand new S.H. Figuarts renewal late last year, it was only a matter of time before his direct successor had the same treatment. After all, not only did the original Kamen Rider Black RX figure follow closely after, but the series themselves share a strong connection for being the only two Kamen Rider series to share the same lead character. But even if you're not familiar with the adventures of Kotaro Minami, you might also recognise Black RX from Saban's Masked Rider adaptation or his brief team up with the Power Rangers just before that (awful) show started. Thankfully though, there isn't a Ferbus in sight here...

Blue is the new green

Acrobatter sold separatelyFerbus also sold separately

Like many probably expected, this brand new version of Black RX features box art in the same vein as the renewal Black - right down to the italicised font on the window and placement of the white-outlined image. Of course the obvious difference is that this box uses a smokey blue colourscheme rather than green, which works quite well in making this feel like an upgrade of sorts. The placement of the back images are again identical, also showing off the brand new renewal Acrobatter bike - something I wish I'd preordered along with the figure but alas, funds meant it couldn't happen.


Masked Ri-duh......Masked Ri-duh...

In-hand the vast improvements over the original Black RX figure are immediately clear, but for the sake of comparison here's a shot of it alongside both the original RX and renewal Black (provided by the ever-awesome toy blogger Hacchaka). Not only is this a bulkier, more human-looking Black RX figure, but that horrible shiny plastic of the original is gone and replaced with a far better matte finish. Once again returning are the leather-style creases in the crotch area, adding that extra bit of authenticity when compared to the actual suit and a rather odd talking point.

The green and black of the suit is spot on, but a special mention should go the red areas which really stand out. Whether its the eyes, the King Stone parts on the Sunriser or the tiny communicator on his left wrist - those details really pop.

Ready to face the Crisis EmpireRevolcane ready!

While the articulation is what I've come to expect from any modern S.H. Figuarts figure, there is a little difference when it comes to RX's neck. While the head itself is on a ball joint as per usual, it is surrounded by a segmented collar that limits just how far the head can move to either side. While it is restrictive, it's true to the suit and doesn't really affect how much a human head would be able to turn naturally. Kinda reminds me of the movie Batman suits.

Moving downward like I say its the kind of things you usually expect - double hinged elbows/knees, ball jointed shoulders/feel/wrists, (cleanly implemented) swing down hips. It's exactly the same as Black's sculpt really - right down to the moveable shoulder pads to avoid revealing those joints.


Power from the SunriserVictory

While Black's attacks were more of the "super-powered punch/kick" variety, RX in contrast has his own signature weapon which allows for a nice set of accessories - something which many felt the Black renewal figure was especially lacking. Included altogether are 12 swappable hands, two versions of his Revolcane sword (one standard and one in translucent blue plastic to represent the 'Revolcrash' finishing attack), a swappable shortened beam and alternate Sunriser belt piece. The Sunriser piece is especially cool as it features a tab on the left hand side which the hilt of the Revolcane can plug into, allowing you to pose the figure as if it were drawing the sword out of the belt like in the show.

Kotaros through time

Shadow Moon returns!"A Friend in Need"

In a post Kamen Rider Kabuto renewal world, it's going to be getting harder and harder to accept new Figuarts that still feature the standard sculpting methods and articulation. However this new Black RX is definitely one that deserves a free pass. Once again Tamashii Nations have SIGNIFICANTLY improved on the original figure, only this time it's with a character that allows for a nice little load of accessories to go with it. And not only has it brought Black RX up to date with his fellow Kamen Riders, but opened the floodgates for Robo Rider (Masked Rider Super Gold) and Bio Rider (Masked Rider Super Blue) to be released in the coming months. Whether its to complete your Kamen Rider collection or add a little bit more 90s Saban to your shelf, Black RX is everything you need.


Anonymous said...

Hi, Just came across your review wanting to know if it's actually worth getting, considering he'll be my first Kamer Rider figure. And after reading this, I'm convinced on getting it. Thank you!

Alex said...

No problem! Hope you enjoy him as much as I am!

tokusatsu fan said...

Look, you don't have to like Masked Rider if you don't want to. But I do. Well, most of it or nearly most of it, that is. But who cares that it's different from Kamen Rider Black RX?

If I created the sequel to Kamen Rider Black, I wouldn't mind most of how Haim Saban adapted it. besides, I appreciate nearly much of that English-speaking show as it is.

Alex said...

You're free to like Masked Rider all you want, nobody is suggesting otherwise. I loved it as a kid and still have a fond nostalgia for it, even if watching it as an adult I found it mostly intolerable.