Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Kinnikuman Keshi: 29th Anniversary

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Name of Toy Line: Kinnikuman Keshi (Kinkeshi) 29th Anniversary
Production Company: Bandai
Distributor: Toei Animation/Bandai
Characters and Elements: Yudetamago
Years of Production: 2008 -
Countries/Regions Available: Japan
Size/Scale: 1.5"
Figure Trade Markings: (c) Y/S . T. B CHINA (plus a four dot diamond formation)
Approximate # of Figures: Hundreds

Details: February 29th, 2008 was a very special day... Kinnikuman Day! February 29th fell on a Friday in 2008. In the Japanese language, KIN = Friday, NI = 2, KU = 9, and 2008 celebrates 29 years of the Kinnikuman range.

This celebration includes the release of a DVD box set with 418 flesh colored Kinkeshi!

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Image borrowed from www.kin29.jp

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Image borrowed from www.kin29.jp

The kin29.jp website also shows an artist's impression of what appears to be a tournament display stand that comes with the box set:

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Image borrowed from kin29.jp

Along with the release of the DVD box set and cartoons being aired on Japanese TV, March saw the release of vending machine capsules!

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Image courtesy of Gilgar @ LRG

Billed as 'Series 1,' each capsule contains two predetermined figures making up a specific tag team. Twenty sculpts are available in total. The colors are a random selection of either flesh, orange or blue:

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The figures are still soft plastic, almost like original Kinkeshi, but their appearance is glossier like that of M.U.S.C.L.E. figures. It would seem that, like some of the other re-issued Kinkeshi from the '90s, these figures were not made by using the original molds but by recasting existing figures; The smaller size is a tell-tale sign:

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Another noticeable difference from the original Kinkeshi/M.U.S.C.L.E. is the absence of circles on the back. It is thought these circles mark where pins pushed the figure out of the mold. It's likely that Bandai uses a newer technique that leaves no trace on the figures.

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And here's a look at the info on the back:

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It is identical to that of the promotional GameCube and PlayStation figures released a few years ago. Boaconda at LRG explains the 4 dots:

"The molds are also using Bandai Japan's dot system to keep track of the use and reuse of their gashapon. When they release a series of figures, they'll add four dots arranged like a diamond somewhere on the figure. As the molds are reused or reissued in some way, they remove one of the dots (I've never seen what happens if a mold gets used a fifth time). It's a useful way for collectors to distinguish figures if they've been released more than once."


Series two is called the "Golden Mask Set." While (disappointingly) the colors are the same, there are some nice sculpts.

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Image borrowed from www.kin29.jp

Be sure to check back, we will have more pictures and info in the future!

Related Web Sites:

kin29.jp

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