6.29.2008

Five more killer behind-the-scenes shots

Courtesy of Alex...what a treat to visit my inbox this morn!

Apparently, he pulled all of these from this publication:

I'm awaiting some further info from AW on this piece of Ultra Q-dedicated pulp...for now, though, on with the show!


(Here's a color version of the same shot, from Alex's Flickr:)




6.26.2008

Round-up: The Softer Side of Garamon

Let me kick this post off by letting my preference-cat outta the bag: I tend, greatly, to prefer suit-faithful, highly detailed sculpts of Garamon and Pygmon to softer, more interpretive pieces. Softer sculpts are a very hit-or-miss affair for me, and I can say within a second or five of looking at them whether they do anything at all for me (there are rare exceptions to this; I didn't think much of the US Toys minis when I first saw them, but eventually came around to be crazy about them). Speaking just in terms of what I'll actually put in my collection (it probably goes without saying at this point that I get a kick out of looking at any and all Gara-sculpts), I can say that I dig interpretive sculpts which boast detailed, very thoughtful designs that capture some essence of the character (the Yamanaya or the Marmits featured in earlier posts are perfect examples), or those that fall somewhere in the general realm of super-deformed. As they get further afield of those qualifiers, my interest wanes.

The wee duo below is a good example of nicely detailed sd-type Gara-sculpting. The in-the-garadama guy on the right is a one-piece resin kit; I’m not sure who makes it, but several fully-painted copies have popped up on YJA of late. I believe that the full-figure version on the left may actually be a conversion of the standard kit, with the garadama cut away and the lower body sculpted from scratch. Mebbe.

A couple o’ super-strange takes on Gary, here…first, we have the offspring of Garamon and a lemur:


Kawaii. I could actually see this one on my shelf.

Continuing the blank-eyed motif, we have an even more Harold Gray-ish interpretation from M1-GO:

Really does look like a Gary that might have been featured in some early 20th century advertisement for fruit or tires. An entertainingly curious piece, but not one I’d chase.

Here’s a vintage Popy Kingzaurus* piece, currently up on evilBay. I kinda like this sculpt, with its weird paint and its non-spiny, hairy-puffball look…and dig those soles, dad! If I ever ended up with one of these, I’d be tempted to display him lying down, soles-out, as in the second pic…


This one...what the hell’s mounted on Gary’s shoulder?
An oscillation overthruster?
The baby from Eraserhead?


Lastly…and, oh yes, very much leastly…there’s this utter mess (sorry for the imprint on the photo, I didn’t want to spend a lot of time hunting pics of this abomination):


Blecchhh.
I rebuke thee, sculptor!

*UPDATE: Alex Wald swoops in to make up for my rather lazy research...just shows to go ya how lax my focus gets when dealing with the Softer Side...thanks, AW!

"The "evilBay Marusan" is actually a Popy Kingzaurus (a Bandai company) and hails fromn 1978. All the figures in this series have sculpted kaiju ashiato (footprints). Each figure came with a black and white sticker of the footprint which one would add to a brochure-like coupon; a completed set of the stickers when mailed to Popy headquarters would win you a special edition monster cast in clear glitter vinyl! Peguila, Garamon, RedKing, Icarus and King Joe comprised the special edition set. The green keshigomu is actually of "Pygu"--a Pygmon-like monster from the 1979 animated "The Ultraman" series.

Last, the "utter mess" is by Nostalgic Heroes (Ed: Ah, yes...I kinda knew that, at some point...but I was made too queasy from the pic to do any verification...) and that's their company logo. I believe--though not certain--that this is a repro of a vintage bootleg from long ago. Nostalgic Heroes does many excellent new and truly obscure repro figures."

6.23.2008

Nice behind-the-scenes shot

Always good to hear from August Ragone:

Mike,

Here's a behind-the-scenes photo for your blog; it's of Eiji Tsuburaya
with Minoru Takahashi preparing to do a take for Episode 16, "Garamon Strikes Back" (Garamon-no Gyakushu) of ULTRA Q -- hope you like it!

Cheers,

August

Very wonderful, August- thanks again!

This pic is so nice, giving us a great look at some of the suit's details- the size and shape of the hands, the beveled texture and fine edges of the spines. Check out the thickness of the foam rubber around the head opening- think this thing was nice and comfy to wear under hot studio lights? Like so many kaiju suit actors before and since, Takahashi really gave his all, not just moving a pile of foam rubber around a set, but actually embodying the monster- breathing life and particular, peculiar personality into this creature...while he himself could probably barely breathe! He truly deserves a ton of credit for his performance, which helped to ensure the character's endurance as a monster icon.

Herr Ragone's timing in sending this over was right on, as just this past weekend that great lost page of Gara-production photos crossed my mind a couple of times...I keep thinking it might turn up, somehow!

6.20.2008

The Nerdstrom Collection, Special Edition: RISE, GARAMON!

This Collection post is a companion piece to my article, highlighting the toys I focus on therein.

Medicom RAH Garamon and his cuz Atelier G-1 kit Garamon work the sand pit:




Yamanaya mono Gary in full effect:


A clutch of Atelier G-1 Pygmons plot their next move:



The Big Boys (no, not the band- but just as cool!)- full-size (53cm) Eye Scream Garamons inna polar stylee:






*30 cm red ES Garamon was already featured here; a Collection post featuring his green bro and the Noda-Ya GiD exclusive will happen in the near future.

RISE, GARAMON!

The full article is right here for your reading pleasure, True Believers.
Hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it!
I welcome any feedback you may have!

The Nerdstrom Collection, Pt. 8

Bandai Ultraman Max stone Pygmon on vacay, Gulf of Mexico:





Oh, and The Proprietor was there, too!
Look, he caught himself a lil' sheepshead!
He is quite the sportsman!

6.19.2008

The Nerdstrom Collection, Pt. 7

Frolic, ye yard Marmits!




The Nerdstrom Collection, Pt. 6

Just a perfect day...
Raced Garamon in the park...







PK treatment on a Marmit Semi-Ningen coin bank and a Toygraph Racer Gary.

When Sister Sara first saw the Racer, she said, "I don't know...a car that fits tightly around the lower half of one's body...it just doesn't seem safe."

6.18.2008

6.11.2008

PaulKaiju's Zinclon Garamon

Had a lovely chat with PK last night; apparently, the PK pipeline is full to bursting, and we will be seeing a flood of new work from the man very soon. Coooool!

Here's Paul's classic, scratchbuilt Zinclon Garamon...scary, trap-jawed, missile-packin' Gary!

...and, uh, naturally, a Japanese porn magazine(?!) ran a spot on it:

Stay tuned...it's PK time at Garamania...next up is a Nerdstrom Collection post featuring a dynamite custom duo from the hands of The Master!