Hello, collectors, Steven yet again with ANOTHER Shin Godzilla review, this time NECA's go round with the design. The collector community so far has been a bit divided on this guy, with some saying he's perfect, others... not so much. So what's the verdict? Is he amazing or doodoo? Or is he more reasonably somewhere in between? Well, sit back, relax, and let's take a look to see whether or not he's worth adding into your collection!
Okiedokie, so this guy is a bit complicated for me. The sculpt is pretty much nice with equally nice paint *application*, though it does have a few drawbacks which I think are more than reasonable to question given NECA's track record with being loyal to the source material with so many other figures and lines. Of course no figure is perfect, but let's jump in and take a closer look.
First off, the head is a bit off overall. It's very Shin Godzilla, you can tell that idea was captured, but it's just not there all the way. The problem with the head itself is it's too large and too long, making Shin look something like a crocodile, and it sits too far down on the neck. Furthermore, the mouth is off; instead of giving it detailing in the mouth where the tongue would be, we get excessive cheek webbing and questionable jaw paint akin to the GMK Godzilla. Eyes don't do the figure any favors, since they should be looking down and to the side instead of forward. This is disappointing because NECA *can*, *has*, and *WILL* do better at the same price point, and to the argument of "they'll never use the sculpt again," we all pretty much know an atomic blast version is coming sooner or later. Regardless, it's not a deal breaker for everyone, and the actual details in the sculpt and paint application are still executed well.
As we move down the rest of the figure, this is where the figure really shines. The sculpting is exquisite, specifically looking at the chest. The paint application here is similar to the Monster King Series (link to my video review), in that it looks a bit scratchy. This isn't a bad thing, it adds to the chaotic nature of the design. The rib cage and pronounced sternum make this figure look all the more skeletal.
The arms are nice and tiny, stronghands and all, with great shading for the claws. For such small parts, the attention to detail is appreciated!
The thigh and pelvis area is just like the rest of the figure with paint application and sculpt. I have to commend NECA here, really nice job keeping this consistent.
Of an interesting note though, on the hips of shin, there are little pokey parts. On one side of Shin, it's rounded off, but on the other side it's really spikey! Asymmetrical, yes, but this is interesting in that it contributes to the idea of Godzilla's rapid evolution... or just an oversight when sculpting. I dunno, you decide.
The feet, because we gotta look at these, which also feature nicely shaded claws.
Now the dorsal plates. A bit mixed here. They're a mix of red, orange, and purple paint at the base of the plates, which is a little heavy-handed. Though they're sculpted well enough, just fine really, a little less chaotic paint would have resulted in a more accurate look. Regardless, this may not be something that even registers to some.
Now the tail. Mine's got a QC issue we'll look at in a bit, but for now, the tail's the same
quality as the rest of the figure in terms of sculpt and paint up until the tip. Remember the thing about getting the concept but not nailing it? Sure, the tip is red, but it has odd puss globs on it, why exactly no one will ever know, and it's missing the iconic second face. Very weird. Also of note, it's an entirely separate piece from the last section of the tail.
In sum, the figure does look good and is sculpted well with some nice paint application, but the head needs some serious work, and the tail tip is weird. I think it's a little bit of a balancing act as to what you favor for what wins and what loses.
Now articulation. Head attaches to the neck on a ball joint, which can produce... interesting results. When you pose it, it has decent range up and down and side to side, but when posed in almost any way other than looking down, the crocodile-shaped head can throw the look of the figure off.
Jaw is on a hinge which open really far, say AAAAHHHHHHH
Neck plugs into the shoulders on a ball joint, and we get some nice movement. Whether it's getting him to look up or to lean over to napalm the hell out of Japan, he can do it!
Ab crunch/waist (?) is a ball joint, and we get nice movement here, whether it's tilting sideways or spinning all the way around.
Shoulders are on a ball joint, elbows have a hinge, forearms plug into the elbows on a swivel, and the wrists are swivel-hinges, not true ball joints. We get fine range of movement here, but unfortunately the left shoulder on mine is nearly frozen still. No amount of heat and dish soap makes it better. I was able to move it into a reasonable position, and I've left it there.
(You can see the hinge here clearly)
Ball jointed hips with swivel-hinge knees, and ball joints in the shins (hehehehhe) for "ankle" movement. Range is pretty even with other NECA Godzillas. If you work the joints well enough, you can get a few creative poses out of him.
Now the tail. We have five ball joints, with the second from the base being very loose on mine, so much so I have to fight with the figure to keep the tail up in any pose. Though the ball joints are appreciated and they do lend themselves to a nice range of movement, mine pop off every so often.
(GET THE TAIL, SHINNY! GOOD BOY!)
The tail tip, the last section, has wire in it. However, mine wasn't inserted correctly at the factory, and it's poking through near the socket where the tail attached to the other parts. There's also a random rip in the tail further up. On mine, this only makes the wire useful for about a quarter of the length. Womp Womp.
HOWEVER, I contacted NECA's customer service on Twitter and they have sent me a replacement piece for this. Awesome on them! Still waiting for it at the time of this review.
Articulation, to wrap it up, is pretty good, and if you know what you're doing you can get him into some fun poses.
To better showcase the articulation, be on the lookout for the video review soon!
No accessories, but at ~$25 it's to be expected. Unless you wait for an atomic blast or awakening version, then you should expect accessories. Thankfully, though, other effect parts and accessories go nicely with Shin.
And the size comparison. He's about as tall as the normal 6" Godzilla, which is good, though some may have wanted him to be a smidge taller for scale reasons, but regardless he takes up a good amount of space on the shelf.
So, buy now, skip, or wait for a deal? Shin looks nice in regards to sculpt and paint, but the head is enough to sway some people from not making the purchase, it certainly was almost for me. If the neck was a bit longer so the head could sit up higher, which might alleviate some of the weird looks it can pull off with awkward posing of the head, then I think the head problems would fixed entirely. Without factoring in the head or tail tip, the sculpting and detail is impressive compared to what else is on the market, both in and out of this price range. Without mentioning other brands, that comparison will be later, it would be difficult to say the sculpted details aren't good and it's wonderful we can Shin captured like this in action figure format.
Articulation is about average for a NECA Godzilla, being able to pull off some nice poses
but lacking in some areas, and of course my QC issue does this no favors. The lack of accessories is expected, since we're probably getting an atomic blast version later. In short, for $25, NECA did a solid job with this release and got a Shin Godzilla on store shelves that'll fill the hole for some collectors.
HOWEVER, knowing what NECA's capable of, it just misses the mark I, and others, know they can hit. I'm looking at you, G54 and even you, Cherno Alpha, both which've been only released once so far. Again, this is a nice figure and some are going to love this, I enjoy it issues aside, but they CAN, and SHOULD, step it up. Good figure? Absolutely. Could it have been better? I think so.
If you like what you've seen, Amazon has Shin Godzilla up and it's shipped and sold by NECA directly! You can order it here.