First, they gave us insanely high-quality samurai-themed Star Wars figures. Then Tamashii Nations moved on – to Japanese warrior versions of your fave comic book superheroes.
Meishou Manga Realization is an epic figure collab with Marvel. The end result? An ‘Avengers Assemble’ roster of high-quality, detail-rich and weirdly realistic character designs.
This way, every samurai gets to be a hero
The initial charge was led by samurai Spiderman in 2016.
Samurai Spidey’s covered in seamless webs of detail, all over the layered metal armour. The spider chestplate is like a warrior’s battle emblem, and the web strings he normally shoots are cleverly replaced by a ‘kaginawa’ throwing hook and chain.
Standing alongside Spiderman on the frontlines is samurai Captain America, which came out in early 2018. More like Captain Japan! This design works so well, we had to pick our jaws up off the floor.
They kept the shield. They kept the silver star on the chestplate – and it’s a detachable shuriken now! They made the ‘A’ on his forehead look more like Mt. Fuji, which is maybe the best detail of them all.
And as if the samurai line-up couldn’t get any better, along came some more retro-looking ‘steel samurai’ with kabuki-style metal masks. Like samurai robots.
We gotta admit that a ‘steel samurai’ Iron Man is a weird metallic combo, but let’s roll with it. This model’s the Mark 3 version, fitted with arquebus arm guns and a ‘jetpack’. He’s not the only one to mix gun power with the way of the sword – there’s a steel samurai version of War Machine as well.
Our steampunk samurai dreams came true.
The outfit’s red so bad guys can’t see him bleed
‘Kabukimono’ Deadpool’s a bit special. He’s a ronin, going his own way… with both guns and swords at the ready. And as Japanese history Wikipedia tells us:
Kabukimono were known for their violent and shameful behavior, such as not paying at restaurants or robbing townsfolk.
Wrestling, loud singing and dancing in the streets were also common, as was fighting between gangs after dark.
That sounds about right.
We’ve always been impressed by how ‘natural’ Meishou Realization figures end up. It’s like Deadpool should’ve been this way from the start – it feels so obvious, a smack in the face. The purple piping details are nice additions to the outfit, and help bring the design more in line with samurai Spiderman.
Is that meant to be… venom?
On that note, let’s go back to the Spiderman universe for a second. To the ‘secret ops’ ninja Black Spiderman figure, released in late 2018.
There isn’t much info on this one – well, that keeps the ‘shrouded in mystery’ vibe going. The original samurai Spiderman got a special promo website for launch (so did Iron Man). This one barely has 2 lines of item descriptions. Can’t get much more ‘secret’ than that.
Red isn’t a ‘ninja’ colour, if we’re being honest. The jet black Spidey version looks stealth as hell, and way better for it. Hints of darker purple bring out the webbing details – helps that they look kinda poisonous.
Ichiro Yashida would be so proud right now
At the time we wrote this, the most recent Manga Realization fig release was Outlaw Wolverine. So now we’ve got the Outlaw Star anime theme tune stuck in our heads.
Those metal claws don’t spring straight from the knuckles of this Wolverine. But the outlaw samurai edition makes up for it by including 3 types of blades.
If the original samurai had been using adamantium swords, we feel like the Sengoku Period could’ve ended much earlier than it did. And if you haven’t read about the Silver Samurai from Marvel comics and movies, this might be a good time to catch up…