Review – Takara 12″ Jin Roh

2 02 2007

Got down to break out my Takara 12″ Jin Roh this week. I must say that this is one of the more anticipated figures for myself this year. My black and German grey Midori CG Jin Roh figures had testified without the shadow of a doubt the quality that comes out of Takara. The poseability and stability of these ladies were amazing and were probably the best in my 12″ collection! I was pretty confident that the male Jin Roh out of Takara would be better than them!

Anyway, one of the best loved features for the Jin Roh for myself has to be those WWII German inspired helmets. Being a war movie junkie and WWII history enthusiast, the Jin Roh does represent a chance for me to collect a figure with influences from WWII. In fact after fiddling with my Takara Jin Roh for this review, I was contemplating on collecting WWII figures.

Incidentally, I just started reading a book called ‘Stalingrad’ by Anthony Beevor and it chronicles the events leading to and during the Battle of Stalingrad. The Kerberos Saga also explored an alternate reality whereby Germany defeated the Russians in the Battle of Stalingrad. In reality, the Germans were hampered by winter climate, poor supply lines and the misdirections of Hitler. It is interesting that the Kerberos Saga would explore the alternate reality of the bloodiest battle ever waged.

This review is picture heavy as I had a great time shoot this beautiful figure. Moreover, there are many accessories to ‘document’!

Let’s get on with the review!

Bottomline:

An extremely stable figure in the same tradition as Takara’s CG Midori Washio Jin Roh. It’s largely due to the design of the ankle articulation and those wide and heavy duty looking boots. Superb overall figure and accessories construction. Nice anime-like facesculpt. Makes Dragon’s Jin Roh look combat unfit when put next to it. Hardly any complains for this guy!

What’s good:

  • Nice looking anime-like headsculpt.
  • Superb stability which leads to…
  • Superb poseability without the need for a stand.
  • Incredibly good looking armour design – trim, fit and all macho.
  • Good accessories.
  • New concept, collector friendly packaging.

What could be better:

  • German ‘thunder thigh’ pants restrict some leg articulation.

Review Details

Packaging

I’ve lamented in several previous posts that Takara should learn from the likes of Hot Toys and Sideshow when it comes to packaging design. I had 4 other Takara figures before this 12″ Jin Roh came along. They all required some tearing of the box to get to the accessories! Absolutely blasphemous for the toy collector if you ask me! It was most dumbfounding for a company that produces excellent 12″ figures to overlook this important aspect!

 

So finally, Takara has gotten their act together and they have made this Jin Roh’s packaging collector friendly. No more tearing and negotiating through that sticky adhesive stuff when we try to access all that accessory goodies! No more slitting of the plastic casing with great sadness! Collectors now get to have the box in tact! Yea! They noticed!

Well, this is not all to the excitement of Takara’s Jin Roh packaging. I was opening a sample piece for inspection at the local store when the shop owner informed me that the empty spaces surrounding the figure compartment were not missing any accessories. He explained that those empty spaces allow the storage of a fully equiped Jin Roh figure. That’s pretty cool if you would ask me! While I did not try putting my Jin Roh figure back into the packaging with his magazine drum attached on his back, I could guess that that was Takara’s intention. Although I would hardly use this ingenious addition to the packaging, I appreciate the little innovations to a figure’s packaging to make it more usable! Thanks Takara! Great job!

 

Headsculpt/Resemblance

The first reaction I had when I saw the facesculpt of the figure was… anime-like. Although this figure was meant to resemble a Chuichi Kohakumaru, I do not know who he is. The head is small with soft facial features usually seen in anime. If you were to put the face next to a Hot Toys face, you will get what I mean. Anyway, I really liked the Asian facesculpt which is accurate to the person behind all this cool armour. It was really comfortable to look at.

 

It is the face of a friendly guy… serene looking. You would probably not associate him with the Jin Roh armour if you saw him at the mall. This reminded me of the man-wolf or man-beast contrast the Wolf Brigade anime had. When those red specs come on, the friendly guy is no more and the beast takes over!

Quality of Product

Takara’s new Jin Roh looks fantastic! This guy is coolness personified when all that armour is on him. Compared to the Dragon Jin Roh I had, it made me appreciate the advancement in the designing eye at Takara which produced a figure that was trim and fit looking. No more using a wok as the basis for armour design!

 

 

Although this new Jin Roh figure is decked in black matte armour, it is actually a lighter shade as compared to the CG Midori’s black protect gear. Under the armour is a faux leather overall which comes with WWII German inspired baggy pants. I call it ‘thunder thigh’ pants. This faux leather outfit is well tailored and fitting. However, being leather it does restrict some movement of the arms at the joints. Those baggy pants definitely obstructed some stretching ability at the groin because… umm… the pant’s groin area is some way below the guy’s groin. Something like the wear-your-jeans-low-to-show- your-underwear fashion in the States.

 

 

Takara’s Jin Roh has good overall construction on the armour parts. The magazine drum snaps firmly onto the back harness. The harness in turns attaches firmly onto the figure’s back. Nothing looked in danger of falling off. Host to the pair of fiery red eyes is the cool looking mask. The CG mask had two tubes connected to it but this new design has a single tube extending from the mouth area. It’s a firm and good fit on the figure’s head. Remember to put the balaclava over the figure’s head first of course.

 

 

Basically, this Jin Roh’s armour design is sleek with new touches different from the CG Jin Roh armour. It’s definitely not a cast from the old mould. Thankful for it because we are housing chest and not breasts now! The details on it are nicely implemented. This new Jin Roh also sports Wolverine-like shin armour.

Stability

Many figures are stable when standing upright. However, most have balance problems when you subject them to different poses. Here is where Takara’s Jin Roh excels. This guy is very comfortable with poses requiring bending of knees. And it is very easy to make such a pose!

The main attribute contributing to its stability is the ankle articulation design. While most figures would wear a boot similar to its real life counterpart, the Jin Ro’s boot is actually in 2 pieces – one above the ankle and the other below. It’s like the feet of a nude 1/6 body except that it is now augmented with leather and rubber soles to support the body weight. As such, when poses require bending of the ankle, the ankle articulation design performs admirably. It’s been an effective design on other Takara figures such as the CG Jin Roh and Batman.

Accessories

Takara has provided a good array of accessories with this new Jin Roh package. Generously provided are 7 hands(including those attached onto the figure) for different poses one can imagine. Weapons include the MG-34 machine gun and the Mauser C96 semi-automatic pistol. The C96 ‘Broomhandle’ is similar to that on the Midori Washio CG Jin Roh. The MG-34 comes with a bipod that could be closed and stored under the barrel.

A cool addition to this new Jin Roh is the ammo drum. Think massive firepower! Loading the MG-34 involves attaching one end of the ammo belt to the machine gun and the other into a slot on the ammo drum. The whole setup is well engineered and any assembling is hassle free.

Enclosed in clear plastic is the sticker sheet as well as a guide to fixing all that armour. Thankfully, although everything is in Japanese, the pictures are sufficient to convey the message to the uninitiated buyer of this excellent Jin Roh figure.

 

 

 

 

 

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7 responses

4 02 2007
Gab

It’s just an unbelievably beautiful piece, great review.

Got one myself……no regrets: http://img403.imageshack.us/img403/4913/p1010065co5.jpg

Apparently, 4 more to go!!

4 02 2007
swftoys

So there’s your MG-42 and the metal belt? Nice one!

8 02 2007
eddie.

Isn’t this figure frikkin’ awesome?!! I haven’t opened mine since I intend to sell it but damn, I dunno whether I should keep it myself!

Btw, sorry bro, I have no idea where the 小白丸忠一 (Kohakumaru Chuichi) came from.

I see you were in Tokyo last year. You should have gave me a call… would have went figure hunting with ya. Hahhahaha… and yeah, HT’s Superman and Batman ain’t hot here. If they were made by Takara, then maybe. Also, these are American heroes, Japan has too many heroes of their own to deal with already (Ultra man, Godzilla, + other robos)…

12 03 2007
Shorudan

Just one question, in other promo shots, I see that there’s a leather strap hooked to the gun but your photos doesn’t show that and the one I’ve bought doesn’t have that either. Can anyone confirm if that the leather strap for the gun doesn’t come with the figure? Here’s a reference to the photos that shows the gun with leather straps.

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=280089759443&ssPageName=ADME:B:WNA:US:12

12 03 2007
swftoys

Hi Shorudan,
I’ve raised the same question over at one of the JR threads at OSW. It was confirmed that this Takara Jin Roh does not come with the leather gun strap. Hope this helps.

4 01 2008
Aeolas

nice review thx alot. i saw thise figure today in Hong Kong Mall and it looks so nice. the price they sell is 1260 HK dollars what do you guys think? worth buying it?

My email: los_loco@hotmail.com

thx

3 05 2010
koluis

I like this content so much.Imagination is more important than knowledge.

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