Monday 21 November 2022

Top 5: Tamashii Nation 2022 Reveals

Top 5: Tamashii Nation 2022 Reveals

This weekend saw the Bandai Tamashii Nations 2022 event take place in Tokyo, and as usual it was an exciting few days of brand-new reveals to look forward to over the coming years. 2022 saw big moments such as the grand return of One Piece S.H. Figuarts, the continuation of the Super Sentai range, Metal Heroes gain new life in the Chogokin line, a strong return for S.H. MonsterArts as well as the usual impressive displays from the likes of Kamen Rider, Gundam, Ultraman, Macross and more. So today I'm looking back on my five favourite reveals from the event, all of which I simply can't wait to preorder…providing these aren't more examples of figures that revealed and immediately end up in Bandai purgatory that is.

5. Soul of Chogokin Gurren Lagann (Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann)
Soul of Chogokin Gurren Lagann

Gurren Lagann's 15th anniversary has brought a slew of new figures, so it's understandable that not everyone might find Bandai's latest offering all that exciting. However Gainax's tribute to all things Super Robot joining the Soul of Chogokin line is something that's LONG overdue, and the fact it looks to have the transformation/combination element still intact makes it all the more exciting. Sentinel may have beaten them to the punch with their forthcoming RIOBOT Deformation option, but with that figure priced at a whopping 32,000 yen it'll be interesting to see how Bandai plan to compete with them when it comes to both affordability and the materials used in its construction. 

4. S.H. Figuarts Alien Mefilas (Shin Ultraman)
S.H. Figuarts Alien Mefilas (Shin Ultraman)

While we've already had a few figures from Shin Ultraman this is the first time Bandai have stepped outside the Ultraman mould, and Mefilas was the perfect choice. Taking those core design traits and twisting them into a sleeker, more imposing reimagining, Mefilas' showdown with Ultraman is one of the many highlights from the film and the character himself is also one of the best it has to offer. Though his plan wasn't too different to that of the original series' Mefilas, it’s the charisma actor Koji Yamamoto exudes that makes it such an unforgettable performance. "A must have", one of my favourite sayings… 

3. S.H. Figuarts Carnage (Venom: Let There Be Carnage)
S.H. Figuarts Carnage

Carnage is one of my all-time favourite comic book villains, so when the S.H. Figuarts Venom was announced I did have a faint slither of hope that Carnage might follow. Admittedly that hope had begun to fade, so seeing the figure turn up at the event actually came as quite a big surprise. Sure it might be the movie version, but for once I think that's actually a good thing. Hasbro skipped putting one out in Marvel Legends, and by the looks of it Bandai have come in and done what they do best – absolutely nailing the detail without sacrificing any of the articulation. Besides, I thought Woody Harrelson was actually pretty good as Kasady – and while the film's interpretation of Carnage wasn't completely what I wanted I still had a lot of fun with it. This will be an excellent addition to my (admittedly small, but still growing) Carnage collection. 

2. S.H. Figuarts Ultraman Jack Suit (ULTRAMAN)
S.H. Figuarts Ultraman Jack Suit (ULTRAMAN)

This year's release of the Taro suit gave me hope that S.H. Figuarts might not quite be done with the ULTRAMAN anime series quite yet, but at the same time I did also wonder if this was just a one-off to coincide with the release of its second season. Seeing all six Ultra Brother suits at the event (three of which were brand new figures, although the Ace Suit was released as part of the manga-styled Ultra-Act x S.H. Figuarts crossover selection) was quite the sight, but out of all of them the Jack suit is definitely the one I'm most excited for. Not only is Jack one of my favourite characters in the story anyway, but the giant Hulkbuster-esque Jack suit really stands out amongst the sleeker Ultra suits. Given its size I imagine this one won't come cheap, but I really hope it sees the light of day. Plus if they release the others too, I might have to consider getting the anime-style Ultraman, Seven and Ace suits as well just to have a matching set. 

1. S.H. MonsterArts Gigan (Godzilla vs. Gigan)
S.H. MonsterArts Gigan

It's always good when you finally get a cross off a figure that's been on your most wanted list for what seems like an eternity. Back in February I posted a "Top 5 S.H. MonsterArts I'd like to see" list, with original 1972 Gigan coming in at a respectable number four. With 2022 celebrating the 50th anniversary of the sickle-handed space chicken, there's been quite a bit of Gigan love of late. This year's Godzilla day not only saw the global release of the Godzilla vs Gigan Rex CGI short, but also a sneak preview of this beauty just ahead of the Tamashii Nations event. While at any other time it would have been the sheer amount of Gamera love that won me over (a whole new project AND a MonsterArts Iris?!), my love for Gigan trumps it. Finally a bigger, chunkier and more articulated Gigan figure that can go toe to toe with the various SHMA Godzillas as well as sit comfortably alongside his Millennium era brother. Best of all it's the line showing some much-needed Showa era love, proving me wrong in saying that Hedorah was probably just a one off. Megalon and Jet Jaguar next year please? 


What were your favourite reveals at this year's Tamashii Nation event? Be sure to let me know, as well as any suggestions you have for future top five features, in the comment section below.

1 comment:

Oar said...

I wasn't familiar with that version of Ultraman Jack before, so seeing such a bulky guy in those familiar colours really surprised me! It's a really cool-looking and tempting figure for me even without the context of the series....