I am borne to hyperbole in this blog when it comes to cool stuff from Japan, but this is pretty freaking cool!
Bandai has releases two action figures of Star Wars characters created as though they were from Japanese history!
Designed by Takeya Takayuki (I have no idea which is his surname), these designs are in the Japanese 'wa' style of Star Wars villains re-imagined in samurai style... and all I can say is... didn't George Lucas kind of borrow concepts from Star Wars from Japan anyhow?
The two figures are of Darth Vader as Samurai Taisho-era Darth Masamune; and Stormtrooper as Storm Ashigaru, and I am sure you will agree with me when I say they are awesome-looking!
I wasn't joking, by the way about Lucas, as he was heavily influenced by the films of Japanese filmmaker Kurosawa Akira (surname first) and his samurai dramas. Lucas even based Darth Vader's helmet and suit on samurai armor.
|Samurai Taisho Darth Vader|
So... imagine if you would, if Mifune did not turn down the roles... and imagine if Star Wars was even MORE of a samurai drama.... we'd have costumes like these action figures.
We'd have katana/lightsabers... the samurai helmet would have the Imperial insignia (and not an Imperial Japan one).
What I really love on the Stormtrooper, is the look of the armor... how it looks like it was carved from ivory or bone... like a netsuke figurine...
|Teppo Ashigaru Stormtrooper|
- Officially-licensed Star Wars collectibles;
- Materials: Plastic (ABS and PVC);
- Dimensions: 7" tall;
- Samurai Taisho Darth Vader Includes: Samurai General Darth Vader figure, katana-style lightsaber, Inactive lightsaber hilt, and four sets of interchangeable hands: fists, open, grasping, and force-choke;
- Ashigaru Stormtrooper Includes: Samurai Footsoldier Stormtrooper figure, Japanese katana sword and scabbard, metal-and-wood-look feudal-era blaster, and four sets of interchangeable hands: fists, half-open, grasping, and trigger.
There's also a Boba Fett Ronin Samurai Meisho figure with his EE-3 rifle portrayed as a flint-lock style blaster, and his superb backpack missile that can be removed and attached, plus a moveable helmet-mounted scope. He also comes with a ninja-style short katana sword and sheath, and a few ninja-blade accessories than can be attached to his shin and forearm. This one is 6-3/4" tall.
But wait! There more!
There's also an Akazonae Royal Guard Meisho figure, that comes with his force pike staff and a katana sword. The front robe pieces are removable, giving the option of display the guard in a samurai armor fashion. For further posing, it comes with interchangeable hands.
All are US $89.99, except the Stormtropper that is only US$79.99.
Where can you buy them? Various places... look it up on line with the search parameter of: Bandai Star Wars Movie Realization Figures.
May the Force be with you!