Thursday, April 9, 2009

A little BS About Toys

Yesterday I posted the picture of the black Evangelion figure, EVA Unit 03. The chrome one from the day before is unit 04. Notice that the chrome one doesn't have the power umbilical like the other five. That's because it was powered by the S-2 engine that blew up, and took out New Mexico, Arizona, and most of Colorado, if I remember right.

I started with the photo of Unit One, the purple guy, on the first of April. The red one is Unit 02. The yellow one with the shield is Unit 00, and the blue is Unit 00', the rebuilt model of Unit 00. All the figures come from the anime series Neon Genesis Evangelion, which is as strange a work as I have ever seen. The Wiki entry provides a decent synopsis.

"Evangelion", of course, is Gospel, and Genesis, is the first book of the Bible. But the twenty six episode story is not a Christian allegory. Rather Hideaki Anno, the creator seems to throw Biblical, and Christian symbols into the apocalyptic, enigmatic, and dreamlike storyline for the sake of enhancing the the overall weirdness that stretches from the plot, to the nature of the Bio-robotic EVA, depicted in the toys. Most Japanese robots aren't robots. They're battle machines driven by a human pilot, or team of pilots. The Evas are also controlled by a human pilot. Problem is, under the armor the Eva is a living organism- a giant humanoid creature that is cloned, and then essentially pithed, and kept alive artificially. The human pilot is entombed in a cylindrical metal capsule which is charged full of oxygen bearing fluid, and inserted into the creature's spinal cord. (see the yellow one in the picture- hatch open, entry plug exposed) There, the pilot develops a telepathic bond with the thing's brain, and takes it out to do hand to hand combat against transdimensioal "Angels" which take the form of everything from bipedal insectoid monsters, to giant crystals trying to bore into the headquarters of NERV, the clandestine ultratech military science unit that created the Eva's from genetic stock that they recovered from the giant monster that they found at the South Pole after following directions discovered in The Dead Sea Scrolls. When they found the monster, it blew up, and wiped out almost everybody. NERV passed the disaster off as a giant meteor strike, and created the Evangelions to fight off the giant monsters descendants, the Angels...

Sound ridiculously convoluted? It is. It's a deeply flawed work. Nonetheless, it's one of the most powerful stories I've ever encountered. And the Angel attacks- the monster fights are some of the most heart pounding action sequences I've seen. It is a strange, and wonderful piece. Definitely worth the twelve hours, and change it takes to watch the series. The toys are cool, too. They are from Bandai's Soul of Chogokin series, which usually focuses on re-doing the classic pieces from the seventies. Neon Genesis (1996) was popular enough that Bandai broke with tradition to produce these little gems. They are almost all metal, and incredibly well articulated, and well balanced. Actually, they're the only toys in the whole Soul of Chogokin series that are actually fun to take down from the shelf and play with.They can assume almost any pose that a person can. But the picture with the post tonight isn't from the Neon Genesis Evangelion series. It's a Rick Dom, Principality of Zeon, enemy mecha from the series Mobile Suit Gundam, which first aired in 1978. And it's not a toy. It's a model kit. Anyway- that's about all for this sweetly uneventful day.


1 comment:

mushroom said...

That's interesting stuff. I was impressed with the look of the EVA's.