Ani-Merch' SPECIAL: Q Reviews - RAH Space Sheriff Gavan!
"There ain't no school better than OLD school", or so the saying goes, and to be honest, who am I to disagree?
It's a lot easier to find tokusatsu fans these days, and just about anyone can say they like Kamen Rider or Super Sentai (and to that extent, Power Rangers). But I've always humbly believed that to be a proper fan of tokusatsu, one should learn how to like, or at least appreciate, the older, more obscure classics.
I'm of course, talking about the age-old Metal Heroes Series. Debuting in the 1980s, just shy of a few years later than Kamen Rider, it featured many elements that would later be seen in modern Kamen Rider shows, and even influence some Western media as well. Leading the charge was Space Sheriff Gavan!
With the franchise seeing a recent revival in commemoration of its 30th anniversary, Medicom Toy Corporation saw it fit to give the classic metal hero an all-new figure!
Medicom's Real Action Heroes line of figures generally come in very uniform-styled packaging. Upright, rectangular boxes adorned with vibrant, but generally simple graphics and minimal text, sometimes with an outer sleeve covering the main windowed box inside. As Gavan is a Medicom Premium Club Exclusive, his box is an even simpler, sleeveless and windowless deal.
It's a presentation that's very basic, but also very effective, getting across that 'premium' feel and also resulting in very little material wastage. It's also easy to store, which my cluttered room always appreciates!
Besides Gavan himself (of course), the accessories included are: 2 x Laser Blades (ignited and non-ignited), 1 x Laser Blade gripping hand, 2 x Fists, 2 x open hands, 1 x posing hand, and 1 x 'lit-up' eyes.
Sculpting & Outfit
As mentioned in our previous article, Gavan is, like all other RAH figures, an underlying base body "wearing" an actual outfit. In this case, a black under suit made of stretchy lycra-esque cloth, with shiny silver armour over it.
And oh, how SHINY it is!!
True to the costume's recent revival appearances (as opposed to the vintage suit), Gavan's suit is covered in uber-'blingy' chrome from head-to-toe!
Every little button, crevice, and even tiny bits of text, have been faithfully replicated on the armour, making it truly a sight to behold!
Clear plastic has been used where necessary, such as the buttons on his chest, as well as his visor. For that added touch, you can also swap out his visor to a 'lit' version.
Pair that together with his ignited "Laser Blade", and you can recreate all those epic moments of him unleashing his finishing move to the numerous bad guys he's beaten!
With the mention of all that chrome however, the inevitable needs to be said - the figure needs to be handled with a lot of care. As is the nature with chrome, it gets finger printed, scuffed, and scratched fairly easily (My piece came with some scuffs right out of the box). This is certainly NOT a toy you swing around!
While the body suit fits really nice and snug, the armour itself seems a little loose, most notably Gavan's metal..… "diapers". They tend to slide about, and very often will ride up onto his waist, which can sometimes make it look like he's wearing very low-riding trousers.
The underlying RAH body might be one of the most articulated figures in the market, but it's the restrictions of the outfit it wears that determines how much posing you can get out of a figure.
In Gavan's case, there is surprisingly more posing options than I initially thought there'd be. With a lack of any real large shoulder armour pieces, Gavan gets quite a generous amount of arm articulation, and even some waist and tons of neck movement.
The only real major restriction here is in his thighs. With the thick thigh-armour plates on them, they tend to crash into his "diapers" when attempting things like front kicks. Since this is how the actual suit appears to be like, it's not quite that big of a deal, and you're bound to be able to get off all his signature poses.
With all this, and his body's nice & tight joints, I found myself having quite a bit of fun posing him - just be careful of scuffing that chrome!!
To be honest, one would need to seriously consider a few things he would want out of an action figure, before dropping the cash for such a product - his personal attachment to the character, and whether if he is prepared for the flaws and quirks that come with figures of this nature.
With his still-relatively obscure status, high maintenance outfit, and premium price point, Gavan is NOT a figure for everyone.
However if you've an appreciation for obscure tokusatsu heroes, are a long-time Metal Heroes fan that's been waiting for years for the ULTIMATE Gavan figure, or simply want to show your dedication to the genre as a whole, then there's no better choice than this!