Astro Toy Super Robot Chogokin Megazord
by David Cabrera,
Super Robot Chogokin Daizyujin (Megazord)
Series: Zyuranger / Power Rangers
I said I had more tokusatsu stuff coming, and those of you who follow toku toys shouldn't be too surprised by this choice. I'd have failed as a child of the 90s if I hadn't gotten this. You see, kids, just about 20 years ago (oh my god) American children were first introduced to spandex-suited superheroes by that famous group of teens with attitude, the Power Rangers. This was their robot; we called it the “Megazord”, which is the most 90's made-up word I can imagine.
The Super Robot Chogokin line has been covering Super Sentai robots for a little while now, with releases like GoKaiOh and Magiking: it was only a matter of time before they took the foreigner money lying on the table and got around to making this guy.
As this is a Japanese-release item, however, this is labeled (in shiny silver, note) as the Daizyujin, which was the name of the robot in the original series, Dinosaur Sentai Zyuranger. As an aside, Zyuranger is really the greatest. You gotta check it out sometime. Where Power Rangers is campy, Zyuranger is both campy and surreal: it operates under the weird logic of the dreams you might have had when you were six.
Be aware that this is not a transforming figure, like the huge one I used to take apart and put back together for hours as a kid (20 years ago, oh my god again). However, the sole purpose of the huge, sturdy plastic DX Megazord was to be taken apart and put back together without an overzealous kid breaking it: a figure like this has the older collector in mind and as such, it offers something different.
For example, superior detail. Note the engravings all over the body of the robot: there isn't a decal to be seen here, and the paint is almost perfect. In this picture, though you can clearly see a production defect-- a little black spot-- on the left shoulder. I am particularly fond of the metal chestplate.
Articulation is also good, unlike the old toys, which featured only the most basic movement in the limbs. However, expect a range of movement less in line with a Gundam, and more in line with the dude in the big boxy suit you saw on TV slugging it out with a rubber-suit monster. The waist and arms are quite flexible, but the leg movement is pretty limited by the bulky nature of the design. The hip joints do move, but they are quite tight.
Not that they didn't do what they could! The instruction sheet helpfully points out exactly where and how the joints move. Give that sheet a look, because many of these spots, like the way the midsection pops up or the fact that the sabretooth tiger's claws move, are not things one would immediately notice even after looking at the toy for a little while.
Indeed, the arms are so flexible that the robot can actually tuck its fists into the shoulder armor! Does this count as a feature? Is there a reason for you to do this? No, not really. Does it look funny? Yeah, totally.
And of course, this is Chogokin, so there's metal. The heavy legs, the chestplate and the T-Rex tail folded up on the back are all diecast metal. The short figure has a gravity you wouldn't expect of it by just looking, and more importantly the use of metal keeps the figure well balanced.
You'll note the shoulder cannons on the back, which come up and can be wiggled around on a ball joint. If you don't want them there at all, they can be popped off.
The accessories are the rest of the robot's armament. Check out the Mammoth Shield, which is, uh, a disembodied robot mammoth head. Don't worry, robots can do that stuff! Nobody got hurt.
The Power Sword (or the God Horn!) can be displayed either in its normal form...
Or with a lightning effect part for the finisher, Legendary Thunderslash! (I don't think Power Rangers ever used attack names...) This slips neatly over the sword.
No stand included, as is common for Bandai figures. The figure has no trouble standing on its own, however. Good luck trying to get this heavy sucker to remain suspended in the air, if that's what you're after.
So, no surprises this week. Here is yet another high-quality Super Robot Chogokin piece, and boy am I ever glad they made this one. 90's kids and sentai fans alike have no reason not to buy it.
Having preordered the Japanese release, we paid $70 from Amiami, but be advised that Bluefin will be putting out a Power Rangers-branded version of this figure and Figuarts from the series. If you wait, you'll probably pay a bit less that way... but people aren't: it's already high on the sales charts at all the online stores. Can you blame them? It's the damn Megazord!
When he isn't killing time on fighting games and mahjong, David Cabrera gets hype about anime, manga and gaming at Subatomic Brainfreeze. You can follow him on Twitter @sasuraiger.
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