Time for a quick lesson. In the series Transformers: Super-God Masterforce, Ginrai is a free spirited, Japan-born 17-year-old trucker working in America. Through a series of short events he becomes a God Master, bonded to a non-sentient Transformer body (transtector) intended for legendary Autobot leader, Optimus Prime (aka, Convoy). Despite looking like Optimus when combined with the transtector body, there is no Optimus here. Ginrai is both the human God Master and the Transformer, add the trailer and he's Super Ginrai; add robot drone God Bomber and he becomes God Ginrai. This is wildly different from the Hasbro version where Optimus Prime combines with alien Nebulan Hi-Q to become Powermaster Optimus Prime.
CM's Corporation is following up their previous Headmaster Juniors Minerva (or as they call her "Minelba") figure from the Gutto Kuru line with a pretty convincing take on Ginrai. Where the original Ginrai figure was about an inch tall and only had useful articulation in the shoulders (you could move the arms forward and back, though he could also do a pretty mean split) the new Ginrai is is about 8.25 inches tall (210mm) and fully articulated. Like with most Japanese action figures, Ginrai features multiple faces, 6 in fact, in both helmeted and helmet-less varieties, 8 hands, and the new GuColle stand.
The figure looks excellent! Even though it doesn't transform (do you really need a big motor figure?) the design calls back to both his anime appearance and that of his original toy counterpart. The engine piece on his back is even chromed just like the original one was in Japan (the Hasbro release was just gray plastic). I would love to get my hands on this figure, Powermaster Optimus Prime is still a favorite of mine (I own two and a God Ginrai reissue), but the price is a little much. The Gutto Kuru line is already pretty pricey, but this one is tipping the scales at ¥12,800. Yeah, that's not a typo, that's more than the entire God Ginrai gift set went for back in its release years. But it's a bigger action figure than, say, a figma, and male to boot (darn it, Japan, learn to appreciate male figures like the rest of the world!) so I can kinda see why they would raise the price to make up for what will likely be a smaller release, it's just such a big price tag...
CM's does have a nice bonus for people who pick up the Minerva US ver. in the form of a bonus Hi-Q head for Ginrai. It looks good, I guess, but it's kinda the wrong head. You see, it's based on his earlier Marvel Comics art by José Delbo, which, while being accurate enough, isn't quite as iconic as the Herb Trimpe/Andrew Wildman take on the character that had balding, gray hair and often seemed angry about something. That's the version I would have considered buying both Ginrai and US Minerva for.
If you're willing to pony up the cash CM's isn't giving you long to save, Ginrai can be yours in October.
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