Toho Large Monster Series Hedorah Vinyl Figure by X-Plus
Recently, X-Plus surprised collectors by announcing a Large Monster Series version of Hedorah (a.k.a. The Smog Monster). I love it when they do that. No teases, no warning. It just appears one day. Surprises like this keep the hobby exciting.
A JAPANESE RELEASE
This will be a Japanese release licensed for Japan only, but will be easy enough for anyone anywhere to get.
This is going to be a big one The Large Monster Series (also known as the 25cm Series and, most proper of all, the Daikaiju Series) is home to Godzilla figures typically 10 inches tall. But seeing as how Hedorah towered over Godzilla in 1971’s Godzilla vs. Hedorah (Godzilla vs. The Smog Monster, 1972), the figure will follow suit and will look down on the Large Monster Series Godzilla 1971 which was released way back in 2011.
This new Smoggie is reportedly 28cm tall. That’s a tad over 11 inches. It seems to me that it may need to be a bit taller to be totally accurate to the movie. But, alas, the 25cm Godzilla 1971 is not in my collection (yet) so I can’t compare. Regardless of how much taller this new figure should be, it will definitely be taller as it should be.
X-Plus is going all out on this release by going the extra mile with little touches to make this outstanding sculpt even more exciting as a figure.
Firstly, you may recall that in the movie, Hedorah had bit of a twinkly texture all over his grotesque skin. X-Plus is adding that twinkle in the form of sparkles to be applied after the paint apps. This little detail was absent and, to some, sorely missed on the Toho 30cm Series version of this monster.
According to photos from Hobby Search, the sparkles will be present on the Standard version of this figure. But, note that high resolution photos which X-Plus provided to SciFiJapan.com do not show the sparkles on the Standard version. I’m hoping that that’s simply because the photos were shot before the sparkles were applied.
A Google Chrome translation of the Ric site says “Round characteristic eyes are to be reproduced with clear parts.” So it seems that the detail in the eyes will be “behind” clear plastic to give the eyes a sense of depth. They didn’t have to do that. And they didn’t do that for the 30cm Series version. And that makes this version all the more special. X-Plus is really making it hard to pass on this one.
The Standard version knocked me out of my chair. And since my ass was already on the floor, the RIC version pushed me through the floor.
Not kidding. The Ric boy version of the Large Monster Series Hedorah kicks ass.
In addition to the clear eyes and movie-accurate twinkle, the RIC comes with THREE (really FOUR!) exclusive features.
The Ric Hedorah will have steady lights behind the eyes to mimic the monster from the movie. I’m not usually big on light-ups, but Hedorah just seems like a perfect candidate for this exclusive gimmick. I always found the Smog Monster to be creepy and even mesmerizing; when I was a kid, and still to this day. And part of the reason are those glowing red eyes.
BLINKING LIGHT-UP EYES
The glowing eyes are just the beginning. With a flick of a switch on the power supply, the eyes blink as does the top of the head. This is to mimic Smoggie while he fires his eye ray. The Google Chrome translation of their site seems to indicate that X-Plus has made a point to specifically mention the part of the eye which acts as the emitter of the ray. So I’m guessing that there may be an extra, devoted LED in the corner of its eye.
In the movie, Godzilla took out one of Hedorah’s eyes. It’s swollen lids closed up for the rest of the fight. The RIC version of this figure will provide you with an extra piece to pop in over that eye.
But, wait, there’s more. This figure’s downward arms can be removed and replaced with optional, alternate up-raised arms which drastically change the pose.
A TRULY AMAZING RELEASE
X-Plus could easily have gotten away with making the sparkles a RIC exclusive feature packaged with non-clear, steady, light-up eyes. So both version of this release are PACKED with extra reasons to buy. But with great features, comes great monetary responsibility. It’s a little pricey for a Large Monster Series figure.
All three stores are located in Japan and have English versions of their sites. The links above will take you to those. Each of these stores are very easy to order from. It’s easy to pay and they will ship directly to you overseas (and fairly quickly, too.)
WHERE TO GET THE RIC BOY VERSION
• Direct from X-Plus / ¥24,840 ($223.60)
Ric Exclusives are officially available only from the X-Plus Direct Sales site. This can be a problem for westerners as the site is in Japanese only and the new account process can be tricky to complete. It will require a lot of online translations and some ingenuity to decipher the drop-down menus. Also, X-Plus will NOT ship to you overseas, so a forwarding service, like Tenso.com, will be required.
Pre-orders for the RIC boy version will end on April 24.
If you’re not up to the headache of ordering direct, you can request the services of Mike Johnson, a dealer in California. Rich Eso has instructions on how to order from Mike on the Fresh Vinyl website.
TO RIC OR NOT TO RIC
The Standard version already has a higher-than-usual price tag. As for the Ric… ouch! Which one should you get?
If you’re going the Standard route, I don’t think you should feel bad or left out. Yes, you’ll be missing out on three exclusive features, but what you will get is probably what most of us will wind up with on our shelves anyway: a Hedorah figure with the arms hanging down, no eye patch and no lights on. Plus, you’ll still get those clear eyes and movie-accurate twinkles… and a FANTASTIC sculpt.
A JUNE RELEASE
The Toho Large Monster Series Hedorah is currently scheduled to be released in mid-June, 2017.