Mazinger AD-1901 – マジンガーＺ HK Version
I remember growing up watching Mazinger anime on TV and thinking, Mazinger has to be the coolest robot in the world. No doubt he is one of the most recognizable Japanese robot characters, and Fewture have gone and given him a complete makeover. In true Fewture style, he has been given an adult twist, more sinister, more realistic and he looks cooler than ever!
Mazinger Z is Super Robot manga and anime series created by Go Nagai which first appeared in the manga Shonen Jump in 1972. He is a giant super robot built by Professor Juzo Kabuto as a secret weapon to fight against the forces of Dr. Hell. Professor Juzo was later killed by a bomb planted by Dr. Hell’s right-hand man, but before he died he managed to show his grandson how to use Mazinger, that is how Kouji Kabuto became the pilot of Mazinger Z and fights against the mechanical monsters sent by Dr. Hell.
Name: Mazinger Z (マジンガーＺ)
Manufacturer: Fewture – Art Storm Co. Ltd
Line: Action Figure Series FA-Z01 (AD-1901)
Designer: Yasushi Nirasawa
Sculptor: Taku Sato
Material: ABS, PVC
Original Price: $39.99USD (approx. $50AUD)
Secondary Market Price: $50USD – $230USD
Height: 230mm / 9.1inches
When I first received delivery of my Mazinger, I was surprised at the size of the box and my first impression was that the packaging is quite nice. There are 4 windows in which you can look in to see the contents, it resembles a small fish tank in my opinon. The graphics was hand-drawn in style which suited the product, and description at the back detailed the features of this toy nicely. However, the pictures on the box were of the first version, and not of the Hong Kong version which I purchased, instead there is only a sticker in the front window indicating that it is the HK version, not a big deal but would be nice if they made the effort to print different boxes for each version. Mazinger sits nice and snug in the box, sandwiched between various layers of liners.
Mazinger comes with a few accessories in this release, there is a spare set of hands with articulated fingers, an open and shut version of the Tomahawk fist attachment, the pilot (in this version Juzo is the pilot), and a display stand, all very nicely detailed. The fingers each have 2 joints, but you can’t really make it grip anything, and the Tomahawk attachments do not fit very well and keep falling out of place, as is with the covers. The display stand looks badly painted, but I guess it’s better than not having one and the pilot is actually not bad at all. Each figure in the line also comes with a bonus part which I can only assume will combine to form the scramble dash.
The design of this Mazinger is very unique, he has been given some serious body work and his build resembles a large American football player wearing massive shoulder pads. There are various heavy industrial elements in this design, lots of rivet and bolt details with very angular and defined body panels. Basically he looks pretty tough and agressive, the only questionable design element in this figure that I can see is that he looks like he is wearing high heels. The use of material on this figure is also questionable, it feels slightly on the cheap side and you can see flow lines in the plastic and various imperfections on the parts.
One of the biggest changes with this figure from the traditional Mazinger Z design has been the removal of the hover pileder from the head, instead the pilot sits inside the chest cavity, entering from the back. This Mazinger can no longer be classified as a Super Robot, as he is only meant to be 12 meters tall.
With 27 points of articulation, this figure looks like it should be very good to pose, but it really wasn’t that great. Firstly, the right bicep swivel joint broke off within 5 minutes of me playing with it, the joint was so tight that when I tried to rotate it, it simply snapped (it is now super glued in position). Some of the other joints do not rotate very much at all, basically giving the figure no extra articulation (elbow rotate and bicep rotate). The knee joints can sometimes get stuck and hard to bend, and the foot doesn’t allow horizontal articulation making the figure unstable when he opens his legs out for a pose.
It is not all bad though, the shoulder has an impressive total of 3 joints each side for a wide range of articulation, and the head and neck articulation allows Mazinger to look where ever he wants! As mentioned before if the figure was made with better materials, it could also make a huge difference to the usable articulation.
Paint was good on this model. The Hong Kong version looks great with the dark red breast plate, offset by the combination of metallic silver and gunmetal grey colours. Although the colours were not exactly anime accurate (as he is meant to have blue arms and legs) I think this colour combination makes Mazinger look much more sinister and aggressive – matching Fewture’s character design.
The paint was even and there were no chips or over spray, it seems to be very durable and overall nicely applied. The only detail which I didn’t like was the way they tried to paint in “rust” runs from various rivets on the figure, particularly the ones on the breast plate, as they had painted these runs on a strange angle.
There are a couple of cool features which I didn’t expect a toy at this level to have, firstly the pilot actually sits inside the body of the robot, very cool feature, and the seat swings down to allow the pilot to be connected in place. The cockpit has 3 doors, 2 of which are interlocking, a very nice touch to the detail.
The second feature is the detachable Iron Guard (mouth piece), this reveals Mazinger’s real face and he looks great!
Overall this is a good piece for any collection, especially if you want a piece of Fewture’s history on your shelf, as this was basically the precursor to the now very popular Fewture EX Gokin figures.
However, for the price at which they are now on the secondary market, it probably isn’t worth it. I was lucky and picked mine up on an eBay auction for about $25USD plus postage, they do pop up for auction from time to time but unless you are a very big fan of this line, I wouldn’t pay more than $50USD for it.
Thanks for reading my toy review!