The panel for Gamera: Rebirth at AnimeCon Japan happened last night and we got quite a lot for the most part. There is still no release date for the anime yet, but we finally got to see Gamera in action in a new trailer. On top of that, we also got reveals for the action figures in the S.H. MonsterArts line and in Bandai's Movie Monster Series line.
S.H. MonsterArts Gamera (2023):
Gamera returns in the S.H. MonsterArts line to celebrate the release of the upcoming anime. We got our first look at this incredibly detailed figure in its display case at the convention. Gamera stands at an average 6 inches tall, but if I were to judge at the pictures alone this version of the monster is probably the bulkiest version to date on screen and in figure form. The modeling of the figure is not only just based around the CGI assets of the character, but a skeletal model was created so the joints on the figure are arranged as calculated at the joint positions to allow a variety in range of movement.
Gamera (2023) will also come with a few accessories including:
A set of flight parts for Gamera's flight form
and a flight stand
The figure is set at the price of ¥13,750 ($105.18 USD) and will release in August 2023. Preorders for this figure will begin on April 6th.
As beautifully detailed as this figure is, you are not really getting a whole lot for the price. You will only be getting a flight stand and flight parts to go with this figure, which I feel is underwhelming. It would be worth it, in my opinion, if Tamashii Nations had included Gamera's fire breath effect part. I can see why it is so expensive as it is because despite the height of the figure it is very bulky. And as I stated, this is probably the bulkiest version of Gamera we will ever see on screen and in figure form. On the other hand, this is Gamera's first debut on screen. There has not been any Gamera content since Gamera: The Brave was released in 2006, which was 17 years ago. I just think Tamashii Nations should have went all out with this Gamera figure that includes all of the bells and whistles in the accessories.
Otherwise, this is a beautiful figure. I really love the blue/green highlights that contrast with the dark grey skin texture. I love just how menacing this Gamera looks. He really looks like he is about to kick some kaiju butt. I am thinking about picking this up. I have a feeling this Gamera figure will look great standing next to the Monsterverse Godzilla and Kong figures. I can see a lot of collectors buying this figure and having him posing with Godzilla in a fight scene that all of us wish to see happen one day. We will see what happens in the coming months if I really do come around to getting this figure or not.
Movie Monster Series Gamera, Jiger, and Gyaos:
Bandai's Movie Monster Series also brings Gamera: Rebirth in vinyl figures. This is where we got out first look at the official designs for Gamera, Gyaos, and Jiger in their display case at AnimeCon Japan. Bandai has not updated their listings for these figures just yet, but some information was revealed during the Gamera: Rebirth panel.
For Gyaos and Jiras, both of these figures will be releasing on June 24th in Japan for ¥2,800 ($21.41 USD). There is not much information about price and release for Gamera from what I could see, but I assume it will be priced similarly to and releasing around the same time as the other two figures.
The Movie Monster Series Gamera, Gyaos, and Jiras figures are as what one would expect if you have been collecting figures. They are very basic in color using only two to three colors and details are smoothed out. Gamera does look pretty good and, once again, looking very bulky.
Gyaos looks okay to say the least. I like the streaks of purple in the ears and on the back running down to the tail. I like the yellow highlight contrasting with the orange base on the wings. I don't really like the black used to paint inside the mouth. I think Bandai could have left the mouth unpainted, in my opinion.
Jiras is probably the most middle of the road for me. In terms of how it looks as a figure, it is very detailed in sculpt and the minimal use of the silver really works for this figure. As for the design of Jiras itself, I'm not too thrilled about it. It has a very large head attached to such a small body. It is as if the design team took the head of a triceratops and attached it to the body of a hairless rat and added a sail on it. If they really wanted to, the design team for Jiras could have really made this thing look like a ceratopsian looking kaiju with a bulkier body so it looks more believable as Jiras rampages through Tokyo.
When the panel began, we were introduced to a few of the cast members who came on stage to introduce the characters of the anime. In the show's synopsis, we were given the idea we will be following these four boys as the main characters. Now, we have descriptions of these four boys and other characters that will be appearing in this show.
The first character we are introduced is a boy named Boko (voiced by Hisako Kanemoto). His description reads as followed (apologies in advance as this is machine translated):
"He has a gentle personality and cannot leave others alone. However, he is the most unreliable in himself and often makes those around him worry. He lives with his copywriter mother and two men. His real name is Watada Akira. He is 11 years old."
The second of the four boys is Joe (voiced by Yoshitsugu Matsuoka). His description reads:
"He is a caring older brother, and is strong in fights, so he is respected by those around him. He has been friends with Boko since the first grade of elementary school. He lives with his father in an apartment complex. His real name is Ryo Matsuda. He is 12 years old."
Voiced by Aki Toyosaki and the third of the boys to be revealed is Junichi. His description reads:
"An otaku who loves science fiction, military, and the occult, he buys every issue of Monthly Mu without fail. He's floating in class, but he doesn't mind it at all. His real name is Jun Ichihara. He is 12 years old."
The final of the four boys and voiced by Subaru Kimura is Brody. His description reads:
"Mixed roots of a USFJ commander father and a Japanese mother. He's the ace of the international school's American football club, but lately he's been acting like a delinquent. His real name is Douglas Ken Osborne. He is 12 years old."
For a 12 year old, the design for Brody makes him look much older. He looks more like he is in his 20's or 30's, especially with those large pecks, muscular arms, and his large jaw line. He looks more like young Biff from Back to the Future more than a 12 year old.
The first of the new characters to be revealed is Tazaki. All the description gives is that he is a third generation Japanese American and an agent of the Eustace Foundation. Whatever this Eustace Foundation is could be what the torn up laboratory at the beginning of the trailer is connected with. There is a lot of mystery surrounding Tazaki and the Eustace Foundation that we may learn more about leading up to the anime's release.
The last character revealed is Emiko, who is just described to be an agent of the Eustace Foundation and Tazaki's assistant. I don't think she will have a big role other than to carry out her boss's orders. It could be to burn documents that could connect the Eustace Foundation to the monsters or whatever way this Eustace Foundation is involved in. Or maybe both Emiko and Tazaki play a neutral role. They're not bad guys as they want to help kill or at least contain the monsters, but they're not good either as the pair have another agenda that just happened to be in line with the military and wanting to get rid of the monsters.
The trailer begins with a facility destroyed and blood stains everywhere. Two agents run in thinking whatever caused this mess had escaped. They get a closer look at the broken panel on the floor and are suddenly attacked by something causing them to collapse on the ground. Next thing we find out is that soldiers are going missing and military units are getting destroyed and call in for air support, which we get our first look at Tazaki responding, "Roger that."
Next, we see Brody, Boko, Joe, and Junichi talking to each other through a walkie talkie like device. One of them mentions they should go on a trip and agree on the plan. The next clip we see them, they are running through the sewers and coming across military tanks firing on a large ceratopsian creature called Jiger. However, their weapons are proving to be useless and efforts are becoming futile and the four boys are stunned in terror.
Then another blip on the radar appears. A large unknown object flying straight toward the scene of Jiger's rampage. The navy begins firing at the object which we recognize to be GAMERA. Jiger closes in on the next line of defense and we see Emiko escorting the boys to safety until a military van crashes in front of them.
Boko looks up to the sky seeing something crashing down at an extreme speed towards Jiger. Jiger dodges the incoming attack, but is knocked back quit a bit of feet from the blast. Rising from the fire, we see Gamera take the offense and charges in to attack the horned beast. Boko stares up in astonishment by Gamera having come to rescue them.
We see a couple snippets showing a close up of Gamera's face and a soldier shocked in horror. Then, we see Gamera tossing Jiger to the ground. The military guides the people in the city to evacuate the area and we hear Tazaki saying he is going to need extra danger pay.
Next thing we know, Gamera lifts Jiger above his head as if ready to toss the monster again. In the next clip, we get our first look at Gyaos about to get hit by one of Gamera's fire balls. We see a blinding flash of light in the sky suggesting something got hit and we see Tazaki and Emiko at a facility talking to one of the agents there.
We then get quick snippets of Gamera's chest glowing as if powering up just like Godzilla's dorsal plates, Gamera trying to evade an incoming missile, Gamera knocking Jiger over, evading more missiles, Jiger about to chomp down on a its attackers, another shot of Gamera charging up in a night scene, Jiger persuing the military, more of Gamera evading missiles, Gamera firing his fire ball, and finally a frontal view of Gamera going in for swipe at the screen.
The trailer ends with the title Gamera: Rebirth and one more snippet of Gamera charging up for an attack one last time. Sadly, still no release date other than 2023. So we know the anime is releasing this year, but not sure exactly when. If I were to guess, however, the wait for release might be pretty short seeing that marketing and trailers are beginning to ramp up. On the other hand, if we take into account that a new silhouette poster is revealed every other month it could be July when we see this anime drop on Netflix.
Overall, while I am not too excited about Jiger's design nor the fact that the entire anime is in CG, I am actually excited for what we are getting with Gamera. It is already delivering the monster battles, which should make all kaiju fans pretty happy considering how Seshita handled the Godzilla anime trilogy with zero monster fights (Is that easy enough for you, Rob? You didn't have to read every single title in the trilogy this time). All I hope is that the story actually ends up being good. So far, Gamera: Rebirth has my full attention and it is looking really promising.
What were your thoughts on the figures, character descriptions, and the trailer that was revealed at AnimeCon Japan? Did it make you excited? Was it a let down? Did you think it was only okay? Leave a comment in the comments section of your thoughts on the reveals for Gamera: Rebirth. Make sure to follow me on Facebook, Minds, MeWe, Gab, and TRUTH Social to stay up to date for more news, reviews, and discussions.