INTERVIEW: "Batgirl and the Birds of Prey" Hunt Rebirth's Oracle
Earth’s landmarks are featured prominently in the posters for “Independence Day: Resurgence,” the sequel to the 1996 blockbuster, with an enormous alien ship destroying Big Ben, the Eiffel Tower and more. But in Japan, the Statue of Liberty has been replaced by the Unicorn Gundam, which clearly has had enough of this extraterrestrial menace.
Alas, there’s no Gundam in “Independence Day.” Instead, it’s merely a co-promotion in the build-up to the film’s July 9 premiere in Japan.
Forget the lights, the tree and even the snow — it doesn’t truly feel like the holidays until you’ve illuminated your 59-foot Gundam.
Gundam Front Tokyo in the city’s Odaiba section has welcomed the winter season with a new projection mapping presentation that gives the massive life-size RX-78-2 Gundam a dazzling light-filled makeover.
In a sure sign that the future is indeed now, the second round of applications has opened for the Gundam Global Challenge, a project dedicated to creating a life-size walking RX-78-2 Gundam replica by 2019.
Yes, you read that correctly: a 59-foot walking Gundam, within four years. That’s not just some random date, either; it’s the 40th anniversary of the Mobile Suit Gundam television series.
It’s a custom Nissan Elgrand displayed earlier this month at an auto show in Osaka, Japan. Dubbed the Char’s MS-06S Zaku (at least I think), the red-and-black van appears ready for battle, or maybe that trip to the grocery store.
Clearly a serious devotee of the Gundam series and a serious cosplayer, Japanese Twitter user Punival has taken both to the next level with this thoroughly impressive RX-78 Mobile Suit costume.
While that alone is enough to make the Earth Federation proud, Punival went even further, donning the custom suit for photographs in front of the nearly 60-foot Gundam statue at Gundam Front Tokyo in Odaiba.
If anything good came out of the Star Wars prequels (and we’re not entirely convinced anything did), it’s that R2-D2 was at last able to expand his repertoire beyond shocking Jawas, extinguishing fires and delivering sass in beeps and whirls. This little astromech droid could finally fly. Unfortunately (ahem), though, we never saw him transform into the bipedal, Stormtrooper-smashing droid of vengeance that you know, deep down, he yearns to be.
But Italian modeler Lemcat has given us just that with “Hi2-D2: Enhanced astromech droid,” which began life as a Gundam model kit. Now, however, it’s the bane of the Empire, equipped with a buzz saw that looked kind of cute on a little R2 unit. On this roided-out droid, though? Kind of menacing.
Because simply selling a Gundam-inspired car wasn’t cool enough, Toyota Japan has debuted a new animated commercial for the Zeonic Toyota.
Based on the franchise character Char Aznable, the customized Auris RS was introduced in 2012 as a concept car before being placed into production the following year. You’ll note the special edition’s Gundam accents, like the zeon insignia and stenciled lettering. Red-and-gold uniform is, presumably, sold separately.
After more than three decades, Gundam shows little signs of slowing down. Amid the international celebration of the model kit’s 35th anniversary, Bandai is debuting a combination cafe and store devoted to Gundam in Suita, Japan.
Opening Nov. 19, the 3,860-square-foot Gundam Square will feature a Gundam-themed menu, which includes “Char Zaku Curry,” a substantial shop stocked with merchandise, and exhibition space.
Famed for his work as a mecha designer for the Gundam franchise, Kunio Okawara isn’t about to keep his creations confined to anime.
The 68-year-old artist has collaborated with EX・Machina Corporation to develop the Ex Machina, a two-seat electric concept car that can actually change its shape. According to AmiAmi, the vehicle is envisioned as “a rideable smartphone or portable information terminal.”
The celebration of the 35th anniversary of the Gundam model kit is on the move — it is Mobile Suit Gundam, after all — returning to Hong Kong for the aptly named Gundam Docks at Hong Kong II.
While the showcase in Ngee Ann City, Singapore, featured towering 1/3-scale replicas of RX-78-2 Gundam and Char’s Zaku, this visit boasts the RX-0 Gundam Unicorn (Destroy Mode) and Wing Gundam. The video below chronicles the transportation of both replicas, the assembly of the 23-and-a-half-foot Unicorn, and the impressive display of the Wing Gundam, which is suspended above the floor of the Time Square Shopping Center (presumably it weighs less than the two-ton statues displayed in Singapore).
You may be a die-hard Mobile Suit Gundam fan, but are you devoted — and wealthy — enough to pay $160,000 for a solid-gold statue of the iconic robot? OK, how about $5,200 for its silver counterpart.
Standing about 5 inches tall and weighing 35.3 ounces, the limited-edition figures were produced by Ginza Tanaka in collaboration with Bandai for “The Art of Gundam” exhibition, which continues through Sept. 27 in Tokyo. That’s the same jeweler that created the solid-gold statues of Godzilla and Ghidorah last year in celebration of the King of the Monsters’ 60th anniversary, and a platinum Gundam in 2007.
After countless defeats at the hands of his arch-nemesis over the past 75 years, The Joker finally discovers the secret to defeating the Batman: more firepower. Or does he?
In this amazing stop-motion short, created by counter656 over the course of 20 days using nearly 3,500 images, S.H. Figuarts versions of the Caped Crusader and the Clown Prince of Crime go at it, mano a mano, until the supervillain calls in the big guns — a trio of Gundams.
The decades-old battle Earth Federation and the Principality of Zeon continues, at least through this weekend, as the RX-78-2 Gundam and Char’s Zaku face off in Ngee Ann City, Singapore.
To celebrate the 35th anniversary of the Gundam model kit, Bandai Namco Asia and Takashimaya Department Store have staged “Gundam Docks at Singapore,” a showcase of more than 200 models from the series. However, the centerpiece of the exhibit is undoubtedly the nearly 20-foot replicas of RX-78-2 Gundam and Char’s Zaku displayed in the plaza.
If it’s Saturday, it’s gotta be SHELF PORN! Today’s collection comes from Irvine, California, where Darrin’s shelves are stacked with everything from graphic novels to Gundam.
“I love Gundam, Macross and Legos,” Darrin said. “Been collecting for nearly 20 years, and this is what I show for it. I have a very patient wife! I am also a huge fan of collectible figures of my favorite anime and DC/Marvel Superheroes. And here are some (and this is only some) of my collection.”
Check out his pictures below.
By and large, people outside Japan can’t fully understand how big Mobile Suit Gundam is. In some ways, it’s a cultural equivalent to American superheroes — and now one artist has melded the two.
Aburaya Tonbi created renditions of Marvel’s Avengers (including Spider-Man) in the style of Mobile Suit Gundam, albeit in a chibi style. Robot versions of Avengers have been made before — even ones loosely inspired by Gundam — but Campbell’s renditions hit at authenticity, while also being cute.