This version of Gamera is based on his look in the 1995 film "Guardian of the Universe". It was released by Trendmasters in 1998, and it was designed as a toy, not as a collector's item. Keeping in mind that this was a $10 toy for children, it's surprisingly good. Of course, it pales in comparison to Bandai vinyl and Revoltech versions, but you'd be hard pressed to find a better version at this price.
Gamera stands about 4 and 1/4 inches tall. He has an acceptable sculpt, in that he's a recognizable representation of the film's look. There's a pretty decent level of detail, with varied textures: wrinkly, saggy skin on the arms and legs, symmetrical engravings on the shell belly and bumps scattered across the outer shell. The head and face are well-represented, as well. The claws and toes are a bit more gloppy, but that seems to be more a result of sloppy paint than the sculpt. There are a couple of eyesores, however. You'll find five screws and their corresponding holes on the underside of the shell, four more on the arms, a battery cover (to no purpose on this version) on the shell back, and a series of microphone holes (to no purpose on this version, either) on the chest. I think there was a larger version made that utilized the electronics that this smaller, scaled-down version is missing. The left foot is sculpted with the toes pointing up- not sure why since the leg doesn't move back far enough to allow the toes to lie flat.
The paint is poor. There's lots of slop, especially on the claws, toes, fangs and chest. I think the claws/teeth was intended to look like weathering, but it just comes across as dirty. The eyes and inner teeth are thankfully pretty good, but there's an odd yellow line painted down the front of his chest. Gamera's mouth is sculpted mid-roar, and there's a giant hole in the center of his mouth for the included launching fireball accessory (which shoots fairly well, even after 16 years).
The articulation is surprising- I wasn't expecting what I got. The head can tilt very far forward and backwards, though I would have liked a swivel or something there, too. Mostly, that's because his head is glued on with a slight tilt. There are swivels at the shoulders, hips, and tail, and the elbows can bend. That doesn't sound like much, and it's not, but the joints generally have a pretty good range of motion. You won't get anything dynamic, but Gamera's not a dynamic poser- he's a turtle, though it's enough to get him into a pretty good "flying pose" without retracting any limbs.
|Trendmasters Gamera 1995 & Revoltech Gamera 1995|