Name of Toy Line: Gegege No Kitarō
Production Companies: Bandai & Marukoshi
Years of Production: 1985-1986, 1996
Countries/Regions Available: Japan
Figure Trade Markings: Japanese Kanji / © / Circled capital letter B
Approximate # of Figures: 100+
Details: Like many Japanese keshi toy lines, Gegege No Kitaro began as a manga. It told the story of a spirit (Japanese Yōkai) named Kitaro and his family. Unlike other Yōkai, Kitaro sought to befriend the nature-destroying humans in an effort to make peace. The pages are filled with a number of quirky and interesting characters that translate beautifully into keshigomu figures. Let's have a look!
Figures released by Bandai and Marukoshi in the 80's were available in a nice assortment of colors such as peach, pink, yellow, dark blue, light blue, green, grey and orange. In the 90's, Bandai released them in semi-translucent glow-in-the-dark material. These figures were available in yellow, pink, and aqua blue/green (and possibly more colors).
The plastic is pretty much standard keshi material: flexible and squishy yet solid and firm. Let's look at some more figures.
Gegege No Kitaro were available via capsules containing three figures and a pamphlet, boxes containing 20 figures, and carded bags. The glow-in-the-dark, 1996 release figures were also available in 25-pack boxes. Marukoshi also released special sets packaged in clear plastic cylinders.
Here's a look at some highly sought after Gegege No Kitaro figures as seen in an issue of Comp-REX, a magazine published by Mandarake, a large vendor in Japan dealing in all things manga, anime, and keshigomu related!
First, the Yokai Daimakyo set released in 1986. (Click on the image to enlarge.)
And some truly interesting, extremely expensive pieces: The Tomb, Yokai Castle, Yokai Gate (all $600+) and the House of Sunakakebabaa ($1200). Hwhat!?
The Morinaga candy company also released a multi-part, multi-color collection of figures in the 80's. They look pretty nice. Check 'em out:
We'll have to beg forgiveness as we don't know the characters names. However, if you read Kanji, a number of characters and their names appear to be listed on the following Gegege No Kitaro toy line packaging.
Click to enlarge
Be sure to check back from time-to-time as we will surely update this entry as we learn more.
Related Web sites:
Gegege No Kitaro @ Wikipedia
Special thanks to rubbersamurai for supplying information and images!