東宝30CMシリーズ 「バラゴン（1968） 発光版VER.」 ＷＦ2014 冬 開催記念商品
JAPAN ORIGINAL RELEASE: 2010
WF RE-ISSUE: 2014
DIAMOND RE-ISSUE: APRIL/MAY 2016
SERIES: TOHO 30CM SERIES
MATERIAL: SOFT VINYL
FROM: “DESTROY ALL MONSTERS”, 1968
HEIGHT: 10.5 INCHES / 26.6 CM
WIDTH: 7.75 INCHES / 19.6 CM
LENGTH: 14 INCHES / 35.5 CM
FIGURE WEIGHT: 15.4 OZ / 436 G
REVIEW AND PHOTOS: JOHN STANOWSKI
The 1968 Destroy All Monsters version of Baragon was first put out in the Toho 30cm Series by X-Plus back in 2010 making it a rarity today. But eighty lucky collectors got their hands on a 2014 Re-issue made specially for the Wonder Festival toy show in Japan in February 2014. Forty figures were sold at the show, and forty more were sold online.
This figure was re-issued in 2016 for the North American market through Diamond Distributors. The “Godzilla Kaiju Baragon 1965/1968 Version” was released, to everyone’s surprise, with a bonus alternate head so you could go for the Frankenstein Conquers the World look or the Destroy All Monsters look.
This review is for the 2014 Winter Wonder Festival Commemorative Edition. This figure should be mostly identical to the original release (sans the light gimmick).
The 2014 Wonder Festival version of this figure comes in a plain 30cm box. If you’re hunting down the original version online, the box will have art on the front. The figure comes in two pieces (body and tail) twist-tied in an open plastic shell.
Heat the hole on the body with a hairdryer until it’s soft, and then push the unheated tail in. The tail joint is a sort of triangular / elliptical shape and requires a little more effort attaching.
If you’ve been looking at the same production photos available on the web over and over when trying to decide whether or not to get this guy, know this: it looks a whole lot better in person!
The head on this figure seems a little wider than it did in the movie. I suspect that would be because he’s standing and has nothing behind him, whereas in the movie he was crawling and had his bulk behind him.
The real giveaway that you’re looking at the 1968 version is that the horn is pointing up instead of forward as with the 1965 suit. As for details, they’re all there. Note that the corners of his mouth, as seen from the side view, really stretch far back into the head. I’m assuming this is because this suit was so beat up from being repurposed as Ultraman kaiju over and over again.
The jaw is crooked on my figure and leans towards the left. I don’t know if they are all like this or not but it’s not overly noticeable.
As usual, X-Plus figures have individually sculpted teeth.
The bumpy texture on the top of the head looks amazing! But, I think, the details on the nose and snout are a little soft and look flat under normal lighting. I’m not complaining, though. If you’re a fan of Baragon, this is a must have!
The mushroom-combed texture on the back ridges is very detailed.
The chunky, bunchy nature of the smooth-skinned Baragon suit shines on this figure. The reptilian-pattern on the chest looks fantastic.
JOINTS & SEAMS
The Toho 30cm Series Baragon has more visible joints than on most other X-Plus figures. The arm and leg joints are visible and aren’t glued or sealed. The sculpt, though, attempts to hide these seams with bulges and ripples in the suit. Unfortunately, nothing can hide the line running around the bottom of Baragon’s neck. It’s times like this that I need to remind myself that these are almost, but not quite, the super perfect statues I’ve always wanted to collect. They are still vinyl figures, and vinyl figures have a long history of doll-like joints. X-Plus just does a better job of hiding them… most of the time.
The ridges running down Baragon’s back and tail do a good job of concealing the tail joint.
The pose is simple and I like that. Though I don’t know where the inspiration for this pose came from. The only scene with Baragon in Destroy All Monsters that I can recall, which was really more of a super quick cameo, had him on his hands and knees in crawling position. But I’m actually glad this figure is bipedal since it’s from the 30cm Series. They’re so big, they look better standing up on two legs.
And this standing pose demands less room on the shelf. His head is turned ever so slightly to his left so displaying him from a forward three-quarter angle on his left side would look best on the shelf. It also helps that his left arm is lower than the right so this angle of him looks especially nice. But this guy looks good from any angle!
The Wonder Festival Baragon Commemorative Edition has a base coat of a dull brown, with plenty of reddish brown highlights which are awesome. They are very subtle and give the base color an overall realistic quality. It does lack, though, the extra layer of brighter highlights which the Large Monster Series Standing Baragon had.
The ridges which run down the back and tail are painted a lighter brown (almost tan) and is much more refined and subtle than on the Large Monster Series version. This looks top notch! That same lighter brown feathers over the claws and ears.
The teeth are a realistic-looking dirty white and look very un-toylike (which is a GOOD thing!) The inside of the mouth also has a more grown up unsaturated shade of red. The eyes are a brighter white and a bit stark, but that’s a good match for the real suit. They also have a glossy sheen to them.
The paint job is just great in my opinion.
The X-Plus 30cm Series Baragon is, as one would expect, taller than the Large Monster Series (25cm) Standing Baragon released in 2013, even though the smaller figure is really big for the line it belongs too. Pictured in front is the Large Monster Series (Crawling) Baragon.
It fits in well with his Destroy All Monsters buddies, X-Plus 30cm Series Anguirus 1968 and Godzilla 1968.
Baragon sizes up well with the rest of his Toho 30cm Series buddies. Shown here: Hedorah and Mechagodzilla 1974.
Baragon’s tail is short and curled up in the back which gives him a length of only 14 inches, three of which you can subtract if you only care about the distance from the toes to the tail. This figure is very accommodating when it comes to finding room on the shelf.
2014 Wonder Festival Special Feature
The Ric Boy version of the 2010 release came with an extra alternative head sculpted to look like the 1965 version. That extra head does NOT come with the Wonder Festival Commemorative Edition. Instead you get yet another light gimmick. The horn lights up brightly. The eyes light up as well, but not as bright.
And then there are….
I’m sad to report that my Baragon figure is plagued with light leaks. Speckles show up all over his face and even more drastic are lines around the eyes. The figure you get may not be this bad, or have leaks at all. Then again, they might be worse.
I’m seeing light leaks from X-Plus figures all the time now. My 30cm Series Space Godzilla has them, and the entire right side of the face on my new Ultraseven Standing figure gets flooded with unwanted light when it’s turned on. I’m not sure how to fix this. Adding black paint on the inside may help, but in Baragon’s case, his face is deep inside the head piece and requires a 90-degree turn to get to it. Plus the wires are in the way. I guess there’s nothing to do about this problem except to keep the lights off.
WATCH OUT FOR TOE SCRAPES
The paint on the claws and toes of most X-Plus vinyls can scrape very easily when handled. Toe scrapes usually happen when removing a figure from the shelf, moving it and, of course, drops. My Wonder Festival Baragon took a tumble while shooting photos for this review. Above you can see in the photo above: one toe was scraped and another lost a noticeable chunk of paint. My fault, yes, but it’s very easy to do, especially with Baragon’s long, thin toes.
The very nature of these vinyls tend to make one think that they’re safe, can take tumbles and don’t need the same care that, say, a resin model or statue require. But it’s that thinking that makes one overly carefree when handling these figures. Be careful!
Despite having more visible joint seams than usual, this figure is multi-textured, highly detailed and deliciously retro-60’s-kaiju-looking! And the careful and detailed paint job makes it even better! Either release of the X-Plus Toho 30cm Series Baragon is sure to add some awesome sauce to your shelves!
By John Stanowski Originally posted February 25th, 2014 on Kaiju Addicts.
KaijuCast Controller, Kyle Yount, and X-Plus Collectors Loren Portillo, Jonathan Peter Lee and Dell Champagne Marinez pose with legendary suit actors Haruo Nakajimi (Godzilla) and Bin Furuya (Ultraman) at the Kirk Von Hammett’s Fear FestEvil this past weekend in San Francisco. They show off their love of X-Plus vinyl figures with the X-Plus Pose while the esteemed guests enacted Ultraman’s Spacium Pose.
By John Stanowski Originally posted February 11th, 2014 on Kaiju Addicts.
X-Plus just tweeted a photo of their table at Wonder Festival (Winter) 2014 in Japan. They’re showing off a lot of their more recent Ultraman releases plus four Destroy All Monsters kaiju from their Toho 30cm Series. In the middle is the Wonder Festival Special Limited Edition Baragon 1968 which they are selling at the show. They also intend to sell some online after the show.
When? I’m not sure. But I have my finger on the trigger at the X-Plus Web Store. As soon as Baragon appears on their site, I will buy one and post a review.
Also on display are the 1968 Anguirus, Godzilla and Gorosaurus. Most likely there are displayed only to frame the Baragon Re-issue. (However, Godzilla and Gorosaurus will likely be re-issued at some point for North American release via Diamond Comics Distributors.
By John Stanowski Originally posted February 8th, 2014 on Kaiju Addicts.
JAPAN ORIGINAL RELEASE: 2011
RE-ISSUED IN COLOR SET WITH ANGUIRUS: 2011
DIAMOND REISSUE: DECEMBER 2014
BANDAI RE-ISSUE: MAY 2015
SERIES: TOHO 30CM SERIES
MATERIAL: SOFT VINYL
FROM: “GODZILLA RAIDS AGAIN”, 1955
HEIGHT: 12 INCHES / 30.4 CM
WIDTH: 7.5 INCHES / 19 CM
LENGTH: 17.5 INCHES / 44.4 CM
REVIEW AND PHOTOS: JOHN STANOWSKI
The 1955 suit is probably very near the low end of most collectors’ and fans’ favorite design list, including mine. But I don’t regret getting this figure at all. Godzilla Raids Again was the second ever Godzilla film. It was still dark and serious like its predecessor and featured the first ever kaiju battle.
Godzilla 1955 may not be the best-looking Godzilla but I’m glad the X-Plus version is in my collection. It’s a reasonably good likeness (from some angles, at least) and it helps complete my Godzilla lineage on the shelf.
The X-Plus Toho 30cm Series Godzilla 1955, 東宝30cmシリーズ 「ゴジラ（1955版） 」, was originally released in 2011 with a monochome paint job to match the black and white film it’s based on. It was re-issued later that year (in color) in a set along with Anguirus 1955.
This figure was re-issued for the North American market through Diamond Distributors in December 2014.
The figure comes in a standard X-Plus Toho 30cm Series box: plain, with art on the front. If you are hunting this one down, this is the box you’re looking for. The figure comes in two pieces (main body and tail) twist-tied in a plastic shell.
If you compare this figure to photos from Godzilla Raids Again you’d probably find quite a few that seem to prove that this figure is off. On the other hand, other photos will reveal freakishly accurate likenesses captured in the sculpt. I might attribute that back-and-forth, yes-and-no to the lanky and loose-fitting suit which could produce many “looks” depending on how the rubber skin fell onto Mr. Nakajima’s frame. So, the accuracy of this sculpt depends on your point of view, or which photos you compare it to.
I’m pleased with it for the most part and attribute any negative feelings toward it to the pose which makes the hips bulge out more. But more on that under the Pose Heading.
I want to say that the sculpt of the head looks good, but it’s like I wrote earlier: it depends which photos you look at. I think the front view is especially well done. The 1955 fangs are present and the human-shaped eyes are dead on. The sweeping suit wrinkles that drape from the back of the head and down the neck are captured especially well. My only little complaint is that the ridge on the top of the head is tad larger than it should be.
The texture all over the body is awesome and un-toylike. It’s tree bark grooves are deep and comes with suit wrinkles on the neck, arms and chest. Just awesome. The 1955 dorsal fins had more texture than most other suits and the X-Plus follows… suit. A potential letdown might be the webbed fingers. Many X-Plus Godzilla figures have individually sculpted fingers, but not, alas, this guy. They clump together after the first knuckle. The good news for accuracy freaks is that it appears the suit was the same way. So, stop complaining! 😛
The bulges and dips of the original suit are faithfully reproduced in the figure. A really nice touch in the sculpt of the legs is the zig-zag fold around both knees. This features looks like sloppy work, but it’s totally accurate and can be easily seen in the movie.
Note: the toes on the right foot of my figure are curled up. While making this review I realized that this is wrong. Both feet should lie flat on the ground. After asking around I realized that this is a one off problem with just my figure and can be easily fixed.
JOINTS & SEAMS
The only joint is the tail which matches up very well. As for seams, both arms have visible lines below the elbow. The only other lines you’ll find are below the jaw and around the ankles, but you have to look for them to see them. For a vinyl figure, this is great work!
The pose. Okay. Well. It sort of reminds me of an uninspired, old fashioned boxing pose. I’m sure they must have grabbed this stance from the movie since many other figures of the ’55 have the same look, but I can’t recall which scene it may have come from. Other than the arms, though, it seems pretty standard and is great for the shelf. Plus, it looks like he’s ready to grapple with Anguirus.
The paint job on the X-Plus Toho 30cm Series Godzilla 1955, though monochrome, is one of my favorites. There is a TON of frosty highlights all over the figure which fits in well with his icy appearance in the movie and makes this figure pop! I wish more X-Plus figures had highlights like this one does.
The eyes, fins, teeth and claws are a stark, off white which stands out more than on other figures, perhaps to mimic the high contrast of the black and white movie.
The X-Plus Godzilla 1955 vinyl sizes up well with most of the Toho 30cm Series buddies, especially his early-Showa pals: Godzilla 1954, 1962 and 1964.
It’s also a perfect size match with Godzilla Raids Again co-star, Anguirus 1955.
The X-Plus Godzilla 1955 has a tail reaching almost straight back. The figure is, overall, 17.5 inches from nose to tail, but only 15.5 inches from toes to tail. Godzilla’s body is curved slightly to his left so you’ll probably want to place him on the shelf facing your left.
If you also have the X-Plus Toho 30cm Series Anguirus 1955 you’ll be pleased to know that you have the option of interlocking it with the Godzilla ’55. I don’t know if it was planned this way or not, but these two figures actually fit pretty damn closely together. Anguirus’ head fits in between Godzilla’s outstretched arms like he’s going for the throat! And Godzilla’s and Anguirus’ arms are all at different heights so they allow for a really close fight!
This kind of set-up is probably only for diehard Godzilla Raids Again fans since it takes up three feet of shelf space.
The Godzilla 1955 suit is clunky as hell, and so is the X-Plus figure. The 1950s monster movie kookiness shines and I wouldn’t have it any other way. It’s well sculpted and has an awesome paint job. Plus, it has an awesome shelf buddy when combined with the X-Plus Anguirus 1955. I’m so, so glad I got both of these and highly recommend them, at least for the Godzilla completionist. Both are expected to be re-issued and distributed from Diamond Comics Distributors, so if you’re interested, your chance is coming soon!
By John Stanowski Originally posted February 6th, 2014 on Kaiju Addicts.
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