7/24/14

Canned Kaiju (E-bay Ephemera: part five)

Concluding our tour of the backwoods of Ebay, here are a few final Godzilla items that you probably haven't seen before.  First up, a weird series of "Canned Kaiju," made by Takara.  You will note that they come in a sealed metal can, complete with can opener on the lid! My understanding is that there was a plush kaiju inside, but anything is possible.

Here are two photos of another one, canned Godzilla.  You can see from the box that there were six! Anybody knows what was in the cans, post it here....it would be hilarious if it was potted meat, but then again, I'd rather have a stuffed animal.
This is a poster that's a very clever ad for a "Cup O'Noodles" product.
You've seen these "swinging character" toys.  I even have a Mickey Mouse one from the mid-to-late 70's, when I was small.  There's an Ultraman one on Ebay also, that is equally adorable.
Oh, Hello Kitty, ambassador of Japan.  She really deserves the credit for bringing lots of Japanese pop culture to the West.  She's the Marco Polo of kawaii.  (Wait, that was China.)
Here's an interesting sheet of stamps, issued at the time of TOKYO SOS...Kind of a rip-off though, as they only used half of the available space to place movie images.
From 2011, here's a sheet of stamps dedicated to the work of director Honda! They are awesome, and from...........Mozambique? Wait, what?
Here's a full-page ad for Aurora monster models that appeared in the NEW YORK TIMES in 1966.  Godzilla only gets a tiny appearance at the bottom, but it was too cool not to include here.
And finally, anyone on the Internets knows that there's a huge market for fan-made, gray-area products, especially T-shirts, and there are several out there with excellent art!  Here are just a few.
It's this last one, though, that I want to really spotlight.  I even ordered one for myself.  This amazingly awesome shirt is my vote for T-Shirt of the Year! I LOVE this shirt:

Godzilla vs. King Kong Cartoon (circa 2002)

I was cleaning up some old posts on The Sphinx, and wanted to re-add this cartoon I did years ago.  I watercolored it, and ended up using it as the cover for one of my compilation discs.

7/15/14

King Ghidorah Book! (Japan, 1984)

Fresh out of the mail, comes this amazing "Godzilla vs King Ghidorah" book from Japan.  Printed in 1984, it was the third volume of a series, as we shall see on the inside back cover.  It measures roughly 7.5 x 8.5 inches, is 40 pages, and is printed on sturdy, thick, glossy paper, stapled together like a magazine, and then glued into a thick cover.  Very well made, and a testament to this is that it's still pristine after 30 years.
Besides great photos from his movie appearances up to the time, there are three works of art in this book that were so amazing, I had to get them onto this blog somehow.  Luckily, I have one of those backwards, top-down scanners with a transparent glass lid, which made it easier to know I was pressing firmly enough to capture the image.  Stitching them together is never fun, but I think you will enjoy what you are about to see:
First up, a cutaway diagram of King Ghidorah anatomy! Pictures like this were a mainstay in Japanese kids' magazines and books since the 1960's.  The next time your school-age kid needs a science project, feel free to use this diagram.  And let me know what happens; the description of the look of frightened befuddlement on the teacher's face will be enough for me.
Next up is this gorgeous painting.  The battle described is from GHIDRAH THE THREE-HEADED MONSTER, which is one of my very favorites.  The one problem I have with this painting is that poor Mothra is experiencing a serious injury to its shell, and that really bugs me--which is weird, I know, especially upon noticing that Godzilla is taking a Ghidorah lightning-blast to the crotch...!
Another sweeeeet painting! I love Godzilla's red eyes here.  It's hard to say exactly if this is supposed to reference a specific movie, but I know what I like, and I like this painting.
The inside of the back cover, which at least gives us publication date, and shows us all five volumes in this series.  No doubt the word balloon over Godzilla's head is telling us to buy all five volumes.  Would if I could, Godzilla.
The glorious back cover of this glorious book!

7/10/14

Rocky (and Bullwinkle) Kaleidoscope Puzzle (1969)

I am not only a sucker for vintage "Rack Toys," but also vintage Rocky & Bullwinkle stuff, and I just picked this up from Ebay last week.  The back of the card is unfortunately blank, but when I was examining the puzzle, I realized that the shapes looked familiar.  It turns out, they are identical to a larger, wooden version of this puzzle that I have, where the object is to build a 3-dimensional rectangle, SO, this puzzle had two different objectives, which is pretty cool...although, poor Rocky can't seem to figure it out!

6/26/14

Godzilla's Hawaiian Attire: E-bay Ephemera (part four)

More spelunking into interesting crevices of Ebay.  First up, I discovered only this week that there is a companion piece to the Mothra Fishing Lure we talked about earlier, and it's none other than Godzilla himself:
You can run into lots of great fan-made T-shirts, but this one was so good, I bought several...one for myself, and several to give away.  Unfortunately, the seller told me they were going to stop producing them, so I don't think they are made any more:
 The Japanese have not lost the important, child-like ability to see things in bizarre and different ways.  For instance, put Godzilla on the end of a stick, and what does it look like? Why, a hammer, of course.
This toy noise-making hammer was made by Takara in 1991:
Here's a neat, stylish, and very clever poster that was included with a version of the Japanese "Mothra vs. Godzilla" soundtrack LP:
Isn't that wonderful? I'd love to find a better scan or photo of the artwork.  It gets better every time I stare at it.
And finally, this summer wasn't the FIRST time that Godzilla went to Hawaii.  A company called Bou-Ken-Oh produced a line of amazing shirts several years ago, and they are mind-altering.  I'd not be caught dead in a Hawaiian shirt, but I would wear these everywhere, they are that amazing.  This first one is called "Godzilla Movie Monsters:"
 Let's look at some close-ups while we all recover from the awesomeness:





Oh, my stars.  Words just fail me.  Ebirah? Gorosaurus? Are you kidding me?! That's truly something.  And I have a good look at one more, called "Godzilla's Revenge:"

Even the box is stylish!

I'd love to print this hugely, for wrapping paper!
 

Look closely at the paperwork, and you can see that they made several other movie-themed shirts, such as GIGANTIS THE FIRE MONSTER (hey, another American title, that's weird), GODZILLA AGAINST MOTHRA, DESTROY ALL MONSTERS (awwwww MAN I want to see that one!), and many more!

6/18/14

Fishing With Mothra: E-bay Ephemera (part three)

Let's dig around some more in the dark corners of Ebay! First up, a very recent item, and one that I'm sorry to say I didn't win.  It's a Mothra Fishing Lure, by Takara, from 1998.  It's one of those things you have to stare at a while, until then you conclude, "of COURSE it exists"!  I do hope to own one, one of these days.
Next up, a neat Godzilla mini-pachinko game from 1992:
No doubt, in your Internets travels, you have seen the "Godzilla Toilet Paper Holder."  Well, this is the Godzilla Electric Razor, from 1987:
Can't you just imagine buying one of these, and opening it up, to discover it's full of somebody's powdered beard shavings? Ugh, I just made myself gag a little. We'd better keep moving.
Do you remember when GODZILLA, MONSTER OF MONSTERS came out for the NES? What a great time that was.  (And what a hard game that was!)  Shortly after that, a promo poster could be found in some games that announced a RODAN game!  Sadly, this game never saw the light of day.  
This is supposedly a "Backstage Pass" from a Grateful Dead concert.  Apparently somebody in management is a fan.
And speaking of fans, here is an unassuming book from 1982 called "Build Your Own Japanese Pagoda" (I can't read that title without my brain adding, "And SAAAAAAAAVE!")  It's a punch-out papercraft kit that is apparently pretty detailed:
That's pretty cool....what's even cooler, though, is that the author added a bonus at the end of the book:
 Well done, Alan Rose.  Let's all stand up and give him a hearty Sphinx salute.  "SAAAAAA-LUTE!"