In 1962, Godzilla made his third appearance in theaters, this time, facing off against an equally impressive monster in King Kong. In the film, King Kong is brought to Japan in the hopes of boosting the ratings of a failing Pharmaceutical television show. At the same time, Godzilla is unleashed from his icy tomb (from Godzilla Raids Again) and resumes his attack on Japan. When King Kong escapes from his captors, the two colossal creatures meet in battle for the first time. The film itself featured a number of firsts for Godzilla. This was the first of many crossovers for Godzilla, who would go on to battle other Kaiju such as Rodan, Mothra, and King Ghidorah over his next few films. The film also marked a major departure from the previous two Godzilla outings, as King Kong vs Godzilla was presented as more of a comedy, this was done to attract families to the movie. The film introduced a number of costume alterations for Godzilla’s design for the first time, severely altering his design. Finally, King Kong vs Godzilla was the first time Godzilla (as well as King Kong) were filmed in full color.
It may be a coincidence, or it may not be, but NECA’s Godzilla figure from the King Kong vs Godzilla movie also represents a major first for their line. The figure is NECA’s first Godzilla with completely unique packaging, a nice departure from their prior releases, which shared a pre-done packaging style. This release is part of a new agreement, where NECA has a bit more freedom with the license, and we should see some additional unique releases in the near future.
I picked up the figure from sponsor Entertainment Earth. You can see my reviews and photo gallery after the jump.
King Kong vs Godzilla (1962) – Godzilla 12″ Head-To-Tail Figure by NECA
- Fantastic sculpt
- Improved articulation
- Better segmented tail
- Nice paint work
- Excellent packaging
- No King Kong to go with the figure
As mentioned above, this is NECA’s first Godzilla release in their own unique packaging. Previous releases were required to use a pre-approved design (which actually featured a Bandai Figure). For casual toy fans, it made it a bit hard to differentiate between some of the releases. Here, you get a great flapped window box that features the poster from the original Japanese release.The back of the box showcases a few photos of the figure, as well as a bit of info on the film itself. Inside, Godzilla sits on a plastic tray, held in by some packaging ties. The tail will need to be connected, and Godzilla also includes an atomic blast effect.
Like other Showa era Godzilla designs, the 1962 Godzilla has a softer, and somewhat cartoon-ish look to him. Here, Godzilla’s design was altered significantly from the 1954 and 1955 films, with more rounded facial features, larger yellow eyes, bigger hands, and the move to a 3-toed foot. The dorsal fins were also heavily altered. The design has become a favorite among fans of the Showa era films due to its unique features, as the design moved back to a more traditional look in subsequent films. On the whole, the NECA figure does a fantastic job of capturing the look of the ’62 Godzilla.
NECA’s figure features and outstanding sculpt that’s just about as impressive as their excellent 1954 Godzilla (still my personal favorite of their releases). The figure has the larger features of the films design, such as the hands and feet. The scales look to be fairly accurate, and the expression is spot on. The hinged jaw looks as natural as it can, and the inner mouth hides a peg where the atomic fire effects can connects. The segments in the tail, which allow for solid range of motion, are better represented here than some previous releases, as the tail looks much more natural. Articulation overall feels like a step up over past figures. The arms and legs feel like they have a greater range of motion than usual, while areas like the neck and torso still features multiple articulation points. It has a great in-hand feel, with an impressive heft to it. Paint work is handled just as well. NECA captured the charcoal gray look of Godzilla here, and mixed in a few paint washes that add nice depth to the sculpted scales. Areas where the paint transition to a different color are well done, with no issues apparent while handling him.
About the only downside of the release is that the complicated licensing of the older film will likely prevent this films King Kong from seeing a release any time soon (if ever). It’s hard to find a comparable Kong figure to match up. The recent Mezco Kong figure is too tall. The closest may be the S.H MonsterArts King Kong from Peter Jackson’s film. Though both of those feature far more serious looking Kong’s than the one portrayed in the movie. Another potential stand in is NECA’s Luca from Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, which scales perfectly, but has shot up in value on the aftermarket.
As far as NECA Godzilla figures go, this is a great one. It’s probably second or third after the 1954 and 201 versions as my personal favorites of the bunch. The great packaging, the included blast effect, and the nice attention to detail make this an easy figure to recommend. Check out some select photos below, and the full gallery after that.