Kamen Rider Birth
Review by Dkun
With Kamen Rider OOO over, I have to say that it was a fun ride. Sure it was a bit of a slow show at first, but man did it pick up at the end. Definitely a fun little show that I would recommend. Of course, as cool as OOO himself was, what's a modern Kamen Rider show without a side Rider? The secondary Rider for Kamen Rider OOO is Kamen Rider Birth!
Aesthetically speaking, Kamen Rider Birth looks pretty different. He doesn't have the large bug eyes that so many other Kamen Rider suits tend to have. In fact, he doesn't even have compound eyes at all. He just has a visor. The suit to me actually feels more like it would be from a Tomica Rescue Force show instead.
That doesn't mean it's a bad design at all though. On the contrary, I think that Birth is a very neat design. The sleek black, assymetrical chest piece and green accenting his armor really give him the look of a dude who is ready to kick ass.
Now, while most other Kamen Riders are based on an insect, or animal like a beetle, or bird, Birth is based on Gashapon. Gashapon are the vending machine toys in Japan that are very similar to the quarter toy machines that are located in grocery stores. Birth's belt, the Birth Driver is actually essentailly a Gashapon machine as well. Put a coin in, turn the crank, and the center ball pops open. It's a neat little motif and definitely something different.
The circles that cover Birth's body are all colored to look like a Gashapon container, and these parts do have a compound effect on them to give them that extra layer of detail.
One thing that bothers me is that the visor on Birth's helmet is just straight molded black plastic. There's no gloss or anything to differentiate it from the rest of the head.
All of the standard Figuart articulation is present: double jointed-everything is now pretty standard fare and to be expected from the excellent S.H. Figuarts line. The legs were a bit loose out of the package, but nothing a little bit of super glue can't fix.
Birth has some of the best shoulder joints I've ever seen on Figuart. They're smooth, but stiff, and ever so satisfying to turn. He also is the first OOO Figuart to feature metal feet again! The plastic feet that were on so many new Figuarts this year worried me, but it seems that the metal feet are back and I am very happy to see their return.
Birth doesn't come with a lot of accessories, but he comes with the essentials. In addition to his firsts, he has three pairs of hands: firsts, holding hands, and open hands. He also has an alternate head and his signature weapon: the Birth Buster.
The alternate head simply pops into place to replace the black visor head. This head's visor is painted red to mimic when it would light up in the show. Why does it light up sometimes in the show? I'm still not sure. It is a neat pattern though.
The Birth Buster is actually all clear plastic and has been covered with loads of paint. The sculpting detail is great, even on the tiniest details on the gun.
The Birth Buster has an extra feature though. The cell medal holder can peg in and out of the three different slots located on the gun. So you can choose to pose between Birth firing his gun, reloading his gun, or doing his final attack. It's a tiny feature, but really makes this gun have a lot of play value.
One thing that bothers me about this Figuart is something that annoyed me about OOO TaJaDor Form as well. Birth features the ability to summon a bunch of weapons that attach to his body. Bandai has decided to release all of these parts as a Web Exclusive set. I really wish that Birth could come with at least one of the weapons, like the Breast Cannon or Drill Arm. It's a shame, but unlike TaJaDor I don't think it really hurts Birth as a standalone release quite as much.
Kamen Rider Birth probably isn't the best Figuart released this year so far, but he's definitely my favorite. The combination of his super tight joints and metal feet really make me love this Figuart a lot. Aside from a couple of loose joints that can easily be fixed with a bit of work, this Figuart is fantastic by itself. If you want a cool looking dude with a gun, check out Kamen Rider Birth.
|Posted 23 September, 2011 - 07:24 by Dkun|