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10:00 PM on 07.17.2014

TF4 Optimus Prime finally gets ideal movie likeness with new model

Back in 2011 Takara Tomy introduced us to the first Dual Model Kit, a kit of Optimus Prime as he appeared in Transfomers: Dark of the Moon. It was a very impressive kit featuring a fully articulated, pre-built and pre-painted...

Jeremy Emerje Crocker


10:00 PM on 07.16.2014

Mysterious Japanese Optimus Prime appears online

Best part about being a fan even in this day and age is that there are still surprises and mysteries that are hard to explain on their own. Over on Transformers Facebook fan site Planet Iacon they've found themselves wit...

Jeremy Emerje Crocker

4:00 PM on 07.07.2014

Space Dandy episode 14 spawns a real life Be@rbrick, baby

If you caught the premiere episode of the second season of Space Dandy over the weekend then no doubt you noticed a cameo by a certain Japanese toy line. Never a stranger to self parody, episode 14 features the gang jumping f...

Jeremy Emerje Crocker

9:00 PM on 07.06.2014

Anime Expo 2014: Good Smile Company's panel

Today may mark the end of Anime Expo 2014 but it heralds the starts of Tomopop's coverage of the convention. Good Smile Company's panel, which took place last Friday night. Good Smile Company staff, including their CEO T...

Natalie Kipper

11:00 PM on 07.01.2014

Disney Tsum Tsum plushes make their way from Japan to US

I had rumors of this day coming but I had no idea it would arrive so quickly! Disney's Tsum Tsum plushes, originally from Japan's Disney Store (I swear, they get all the good stuff), are finally in the United States, both onl...

Natalie Kipper



New official shots of Masterpiece Bumblebee and Ultra Magnus hit Amazon photo
New official shots of Masterpiece Bumblebee and Ultra Magnus hit Amazon
by Jeremy Emerje Crocker

New images of Transformers Masterpiece Ultra Magnus and Bumblebee found their way onto Amazon Japan giving us our biggest and best looks at the two newest MP figures yet. I've already spoken quite a bit about Bumblebee so there isn't a whole lot more to say. On the other hand this is our best look at Magnus in color yet and I've still got a few more things to say. 

Let's start with the most obvious thing, the red front bumper. It's easy to look at it wonder what the folks at Takara Tomy were thinking since it's rarely seen, but it's actually cartoon accurate. Ugly, but accurate all the same. I could go without it, but I'm not going to flip a table over it either. We also get to see Spike and Daniel painted for the first time and they're basically what we would expect when compared to the young Spike that comes with Optimus Prime and the Daniel that comes with Bumblebee. We also get a better idea of how the facial expressions can be changed, presumably by removing the front portion of his head and sliding off the face. I had hoped his gray gun was just unpainted, but now that we can see the handle it's pretty obvious it was meant to be gray and won't be white like on the original figure. The missiles do appear to both be able to fire, yay! Interestingly he appears to come with a special pair of hands just for using with the Matrix. 

With all the new Ultra Magnus photos I'm surprised we aren't seeing the unmasked face we saw in prototypes or the truck cab removed from the trailer. Maybe we'll see them in magazine scans. The new photo sets also come with both figures compared to Prime. Accurately Bumblebee barely reaches Prime's hips while Magnus towers over him. Bee will be released in November for ¥6,480 while Magnus will come out in December for ¥19,440. Pretty soon we'll be getting a full blowout for Masterpiece Star Saber, but not just yet. He was at Tokyo Toy Show, but no photos were allowed. 

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What Natalie Is Up To: Studying for the JLPT photo
What Natalie Is Up To: Studying for the JLPT
by Natalie Kipper

Since I can't let Kristina and Scarecroodle have all the fun, I am getting in on this feature action. Besides writing up posts for Tomopop, I have been studying for the Japanese Language Proficiency Test or JLPT. But I haven't been doing it alone! Like guardian angels stuffed with fiberfill, my toys are always by my side.

Read on to get a glimpse of one of my semi-daily study sessions!

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10:30 PM on 06.12.2014

Move over Disney, it's Doraemon and friends' turn to be a giant combining robot

Remember when Bandai announced that King Mickey combining Disney robot and everyone thought it was one of the most bizarre things they've ever seen? Well it's time for a follow up sourced from the other side of the pond. This...

Jeremy Emerje Crocker



Tomopop Review: Takara Tomy Transformers Generations Metroplex photo
Tomopop Review: Takara Tomy Transformers Generations Metroplex
by Jeremy Emerje Crocker

For the longest time Transformers fans wanted two things: New combiner figures and a reissue of Fortress Maximus. The combiner part happened several times over, but has yet to be done in a way that really excites. As for the Fort Max reissue Hasbro said no many times citing safety laws and the massive figure failing drop tests. Takara Tomy, however, was able to make it a reality last year thanks to the much more lenient Japanese safety laws. Fans in the west, hoping for a compromise, begged Hasbro to make a new city-bot that would be just as impressive as Fortress Maximus in both size and features. Hasbro continued to say no, but in reality they were secretly working with Takara to make this guy: Transformers Generations Metroplex. 

This figure has seen four different releases now, each just a little different from the others.We'll be taking a look at the Japanese retail version from Takara Tomy. It's an exciting figure that does nothing but impress every step of the way. So join me after the jump as we check out all of the features in the figure that gave birth to the Titan class figure scale.  

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MegaHobby Expo 2014 Spring: MegaHouse's Yato will certainly cost more than 5 photo
MegaHobby Expo 2014 Spring: MegaHouse's Yato will certainly cost more than 5
by Jeremy Emerje Crocker

I have to admit I'm a little surprised that the first figure released for the anime series Noragami is the main character Yato. I know that seems a little strange to say, but come on, it's a guy. I was really sure the first would be the not-a-cat tailed Hiyori because, you know, she's a girl and this is Japan. Not that I'm disappointed, I'm always happy to see companies, in this case MegaHouse, buck the trend every now and then. Well, he will be part of the G.E.M. series which is dominated by male characters...

Sculpting looks pretty good, but the obvious draw, besides being a decreasingly rare male figure, is the appearance of him floating in mid air. I'm a sucker for non-typical posing like this. He's shown with a bottle which could be sake or it could be miracle cure he got from some huckster, it's hard to tell when it comes to the former war god that will do any job from finding cats to cleaning bathrooms for ¥5. 

No real info on prize and release date just yet. I really hope they announce Hiyori and Yukine, if they did that I'd order for sure!

[via Hobby Search]

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MegaHobby Expo 2014 Spring: Alter didn't make Neptunia's Black Heart just for you, you know photo
MegaHobby Expo 2014 Spring: Alter didn't make Neptunia's Black Heart just for you, you know
by Jeremy Emerje Crocker

We've seen Hyperdimension Neptunia figures and merchandise for the game and anime series from a number of figure companies like Wing and quesQ, now Alter is ready to make their first jump into the franchise. They're finally revealing their take on the HDD mode of Lastation's resident tsundere CPU Noire after announcing her some three months ago.

Though unpainted, they've clearly made the most dynamic looking Neptunia figure yet. Black Heart is shown dashing into battle with sword in hand. I love the off-kiltered angle of the figure even though that might lead to a bit of leaning over time. Well, it's Alter, I'm sure they know what they're doing. No release info yet, but with the summer convention season fast approaching I'm sure we'll be seeing her in color soon. 

[via Hobby Search]

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Things get hairy with Bandai's new Gon figure photo
Things get hairy with Bandai's new Gon figure
by Jeremy Emerje Crocker

If you're up to date with the Hunter X Hunter manga or have watched this week's episode of the anime then you know what you're looking at. If not then I apologize for being the one that spoils this for you. This is Gon Freecs as you've likely never seen him before. This form is the results of all his rage over Kite's death finally boiling over and transforming him into a body well beyond his years. What he does next is a pretty one-sided splaterfest. Clearly Bandai has been holding onto this figure in secret for a while, waiting for this metamorphosis to take place in the anime before posting it to Premium Bandai as an exclusive only a few hours after the episode aired. 

The wait resulted in a figure that will certainly draw a lot of attention on your shelf, if you have the space for it. Gon here towers in at 430 mm or nearly 17 inches tall to the very tip of his impressive hair. But unlike most fiugres of that magnitude he only comes in at ¥3,178 or around US$31 which is pretty reasonable. He's up for order from now to July 31 which gives you plenty of time to find a proxy seller since Premium Bandai only ships within Japan.

The moment I saw this in the anime I wondered how long it would take for someone to make a figure. Looks like I didn't have to wait long at all. 

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