Archive for February, 2008

Mattel Shogun Warriors Mazinga with White Rockets

The White Rocket Mazinga

Australia is a big country, with lots of storage space. A big country demands a big toy. A really big toy. In 1979 that demand was meet by the good folks at Mattel when they unleashed 24 inches of the biggest arse-kicking missile-packing robot that the kids of Australia had ever seen- The Shogun Warriors.

Sure they were watered-down versions of the legendary Japanese Jumbo Machinders, but we didn’t know that at the time. All we knew was that something had arrived to stomp on our Deetail toy soldiers and Airfix models in accurate mega-robot scale. Oh, and they could shoot their missiles clear across the room. Oh yes.

It’s ironic that it has been Mattel in recent times that has been forced to recall toys because of lead paint and other safety issues. When we were kids a toy just wasn’t worth having unless it was double dipped in lead paint (or contained other toxic chemicals!) and able to maim from six feet away, as the Shoguns could. These babies took the cake on missile power, Godzilla’s power-punch fist is legendary still today, I took one in the solar plexus at a toy fair a couple of years ago, it’s not something I like to talk about.

The first type of missiles packed with the Shoguns were of the ‘red with white fins’ (or vanes) variety. Some keen beans noticed however that pictured on Gaiking’s box were mysterious ‘white with red fin’ rockets. Strangely though when you opened that box you just received the plain old red ones.

So were did those rockets go you ask? It appears that a small number of early release Mazinga’s did in fact receive a full compliment of 14 white rockets. They pop up very occasionally in the collector’s market today, the example pictured here was bought at retail in Australia (Tasmania to be precise) in ’79 or 80.

I’m glad I’ve started writing about Shoguns, they really are one of my all-time favourite toys and I plan to blog a fair bit about them before my time is done here. I even donated a late release Mazinga (sans rockets) to my kids to take on Barbie, never has such an evil looking toy been so loved.



02 2008

Toltoys MEGO Hulk

Reversing the Toltoys diaspora – The Hulk returns!

Thanks to the marvelous network that is the Mego Museum I was recently able to bring this Australian released Mego Hulk back home. He had somehow found himself in the unfamiliar climes of Italy, no doubt taking in the sights, sounds and tastes of Roma.

But like all ex-pat Aussies he eventually decide to return home, taking the natural route (via the Mother Country).

Mego World’s Greatest Super Heroes are actually quite tough to find with the Toltoys distribution sticker, you more often see the Merry Men or even Wizard of Oz line carrying them.

Speaking of the World’s Greatest Super Heroes, if you haven’t picked up a copy of the new book World’s Greatest Toys, what are you waiting for?

This is without doubt the best action figure collecting book I’ve ever seen. Beautiful photos, absorbing and insightful text combined brilliantly with intricately detailed information on each character’s variations and packaging. Click the pic above to checkout some more sample pages of the book.

I’m sure that this hot potato this will sell out sooner rather than later so do yourself a favour and pick one up! You can order it through the link above or directly from Amazon.



02 2008