Sunday, September 18, 2011

He's Well Trained. (A Review of Kiwami Tamashii Kamen Rider Hibiki)

I've recently started watching Kamen Rider Hibiki, and I'm about 4 episodes in (good show, has a lot going on for it, with the musical oni motif with a coming of age story written in as well),and bought Kiwami Tamashii Hibiki on a whim. cost me about 650 php ($15), which is a good price since this figure delivered for me in many ways. originally i had other plans on using the body but decided to keep it since the character has grown on me a bit. who am i kidding, after Kuuga i'm enjoying Hibiki's character now  as well he's a bro among bros, and not some pansy 20 something generic japanese prettyboy. the day they make a KT Kuuga mighty and Kamen Rider Birth (Akira) i'll be able to make a tiny shrine of manliness.

I didn't really pay much attention to the series when it came out but i was sort of attracted to the design of the costume when i first saw it. it's very... unique and almost certainly distances itself from the norm as far as  kamen rider is concerned, but as a henshin hero it's really a very intricate and interesting design, and the SIC version only heightened my fondness of it.

moving on,

The Figure:

this figure is really very detailed with the sculpt being very sharp and  doing well to keep your eyes looking around without getting bored in some places. the sculpt also does a great job of hiding the points on the articulation on this figure and still retains its unity when being posed (gonna come back to that later). 

from the sculpted disk animals on his side, to the holsters for his Ongekibou Rekka drumsticks, no minor detail is left out, or left bare. this is what makes the SIC figures very appealing to its fanbase, and generally the first thing newcomers would notice about the line that separates it from other rider related toylines.

some would call this style grimdark or gritty but it's not really as drastic  a re-imagining as the older and much larger SICs like Amazon or Black. if anything most of the new SIC toys are just hyperdetailed designs of the original concept, which is okay on most of them and works very well with Hibiki's designs.

The Paint:

the paint job of this thing? just wows me continually. the sculpt on the chest is accentuated by the very reflective silver paint that works pretty great with the glossy, metallic violet finish on the body. the red gloves, brown codpiece and detailed bits are a nice touch as well but jesus, that violet sheen! i'm in love with it. 
it's especially amazing in the face, notice how it's a bit darker, and blends into a silver highlight in the middle of the face.

 in the original design that point in the middle of the face was the most pronounced and reflected the most light and it translates well in how they painted clear violet over the shiny silver face but blended it in a way that it fades in the middle, making it look even more shiny. 

so shiny.

The Articulation:

Hibiki has a nice range of motion thanks to how his joints are done which ,while it isn't crazy articulated it still has enough in the figure to pull off believable poses (the swivel-hinges on the ankles really help this out a LOT), and it's done in a way that it doesn't break up the unity of the sculpt itself. in fact it does well to make the joints and their movements blend into it so it becomes very natural looking. 

he also has a killer center of gravity without even needing any diecast on him. 


Not a lot and it really could have been a better selection of parts. for one, alternate hands (even just one that depicts his trademark salute),  and those oni drumsticks as separate pieces.

 but seeing as he was the first ever Kiwami Tamashii figure ever made it's understandable that he has so few things. in fact  he only comes with the deployed drumsticks already attached to the gripping hands--which the tiny demon skull tips detach and also attach to the holstered Ongekibou Rekka drumstick accessory, and an empty holster piece to switch on his waist when he's holding the drumsticks,  his tuning fork that doesn't fold and can't be held and only attaches to a hole on his waist, and a pack of disk animals sculpted as one piece that also attaches to his waist and the other pair of open palms

  1. Ongekibou Rekka attached to the gripping hands.(2x)
  2. Ongekibou Rekka demon skull tips (2x)
  3. Open hands.(2x)
  4. Onggekibou Rekka holstered piece.
  5. empty alternate holster piece.
  6. Tuning fork.
  7. Disk animal holster.


Kiwami Tamashii Hibiki is a very nice piece for any kamen rider or 3 3/4" collection even if you don't know who he is. his design is very detailed sculpt and mystical looking design with a beautiful paintjob, his articulation is executed better than most western toys out there in this scale and price tag, he's tons of fun to fiddle around with, and a lot of care and attention went into his design and playability. that makes him well worth the price you buy him at.

i'd really recommend this figure for anyone looking for something different in this scale, and i haven't been so endeared with a toy in a while.

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