Sunday 31 December 2017

Favourite Toys of 2017

2017 has come to a close and since I had so much fun putting a list together last year, I thought I'd go ahead and count down my top 10 favourite toys that I've purchased and reviewed over the last year. It's been a great year for S.H. Figuarts so as expected the line pops up a fair few times, but there's also a few surprises along the way too. To keep the list as varied as possible I've tried to spread the Figuarts entries across different series (so one Kamen Rider, one Ultraman etc.) on top of an additional entry for the Shinkocchou Seihou line. 

Honourable mentions for the handful of figures I bought this year, but haven’t been included as I either haven’t reviewed them yet or they’re still in transit. Few of them would have probably made the top 10, but they deserve a mention regardless:
- Proplica Gurren Lagann Core Drill
- Figma Deadpool [DX Edition]
- Figma Red
- S.H. Figuarts -Shinkocchou Seihou- Kamen Rider 1
- S.H. Figuarts Takeshi Hongo
- Nendoroid Ash Ketchum
- NX-Edge Style Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann

Now that's out of the way, let's take a closer look at some of my favourite releases of 2017!

Thursday 28 December 2017

Reviews in Time & Space: Doctor Who 2017 Christmas Special - Twice Upon a Time

Doctor Who 2017 Christmas Special - Twice Upon a Time

After 13 years the annual Doctor Who Christmas special is pretty much a British television tradition. But every so often there’ll come one that stands out from the usual festive fluff, with this time of the year reserved for the current Doctor to bow out and pass the torch onto the next incarnation. Following in the footsteps of 2009’s The End of Time and 2013’s The Time of the Doctor, Twice Upon a Time serves as the swansong for Peter Capaldi’s twelfth Doctor and the debut of Jodie Whittaker in the role, with Steven Moffat also stepping down as showrunner before Chris Chibnall takes the reins. The episode also sees the return of the very first Doctor – now played by David Bradley on the back of his portrayal of William Hartnell in the excellent 50th anniversary biopic An Adventure in Space and Time.

Saturday 23 December 2017

Anime REVIEW: Infini-T Force

Infini-T Force
Infini-T Force is available in streaming form on Viz Media (US Only)

With superhero crossovers all the rage these days what better way is there for Tatsunoko Production to celebrate their 55th anniversary than with a crossover of four of their most popular 70s superhero shows. The stars of Science Ninja Team Gatchaman, Hurricane Polymar, Neo Human Casshan and Tekkaman: The Space Knight come together in Infini-T Force – a new completely CGI series co-produced with distinguished Japanese CGI studio Digital Frontier (Appleseed, Resident Evil: Degeneration). The series ran for a total of 12 episodes, which an additional feature film planned for release sometime in 2018.

Saturday 16 December 2017

Series REVIEW: Ultraseven


The original Ultraman may be the worldwide face of Tsuburaya Productions’ Ultra Series, but in terms of popularity it’s his direct successor that truly won the hearts of Japan. Ultraseven debuted on 1st October 1967, seven months after the finale of Ultraman and running for a total of 49 episodes. Since then, the titular hero has made numerous cameos in succeeding Ultra shows as well as appearing in both a sequel series from 1994 to 2002 and a revival in 2007. Celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, Ultraseven’s legacy continues to live on through the continuation of the Ultra Series, his in-series son Ultraman Zero and the currently-airing series Ultraman Geed.

Wednesday 13 December 2017

Toybox REVIEW: S.H. Figuarts Dada

Release Date: November 2017
RRP: 7344 yen

Although 2017 saw Bandai Tamashii Nations expand into the world of Ultraseven in celebration of its 50th anniversary, the S.H. Figuarts line has also continued to press forward with the most popular adversaries from the original Ultraman series as well. Rounding off the releases for this year is S.H. Figuarts Dada, which like Alien Mefilas was released as a Tamashii web exclusive item. Debuting in episode 28 of the series, Dada Agent #271 was sent to Earth in order to find six human specimens. Since then the Dada have been a recurring presence in the Ultra multiverse, with another agent most recently appearing in Ultraman Geed.

Thursday 7 December 2017

Toybox REVIEW: S.H. Figuarts Kamen Rider Amazon Neo

Release Date: October 2017
RRP: 5940 yen

The hunt continues as Bandai Tamashii Nations move forward with Kamen Rider Amazons’ second season! As well as capping off the core (Amazon) cast from the first season in October, season two kicked off with the release of S.H. Figuarts Kamen Rider Amazon Neo. An Amazon whose life was steeped in tragedy, Chihiro simply wanted to control his insatiable hunger and live as peacefully as possible. His life changed when he met Iyu and joined the 4C Amazon hunting squad, however these turn of events eventually revealed him as both the son of Jin Takayama/Amazon Alpha, the source of a whole new breed of Amazons and as such, purely by victim of circumstance, humanity’s greatest threat.

Sunday 3 December 2017

Toybox REVIEW: S.H. Figuarts Mole Amazon

Release Date: October 2017
RRP: 7020 yen

Although Bandai Tamashii Nations are now moving onto releases from the second season of Kamen Rider Amazons, there was still one last character needed to round off the first season cast in a satisfying manner. Despite not bearing the title of Kamen Rider, Mamoru was both a hero and highlight of the show and gets the recognition he deserves with the release of the Tamashii web exclusive S.H. Figuarts Mole Amazon. A homage to the original Kamen Rider Amazon’s enemy-turned-ally from the original 1974 series, this new Mole Amazon was a valued member of the Nozama Peston Service before leaving to help protect the last surviving Amazons in the show’s second season.