Here I am again, sitting here with the third of the four Power-Up figures Trendmasters released in 1994 as part of their Godzilla Wars line. I said it before, I’ll say it again: I love these things. They were a huge part of my childhood growing up. The best part about these gimmicks is that it allowed these figures to blend right in with other popular toy lines of the era. Transformers, Star Wars, Jurassic Park, Alien vs. Predator… You name it. But that is enough for my trip down memory lane. The next figure I’m reviewing is the Power Up Cyber Rodan. Nowadays, this guy can fetch for a pretty penny. But is he actually worth it over twenty-years later? Let’s find out.
Rodan stands at six inches with a wingspan of roughly nine inches. This makes him demand a hefty amount of shelf space. He scales in well with the Power Up Mecha Godzilla and Godzilla figures, but comes up a bit big when next to the Power Up Mecha King Ghidorah, but that is more an issue with that figure being too small. Rodan is molded in a hard plastic with his wings seeming to be a softer material. I believe they are still plastic as they’re not bendy enough to be rubber nor sturdy enough to be vinyl. At least not the type of vinyl Trendmasters uses.
The sculpt is pretty nice, nothing to write home about. There’s a decent amount of detailing to the flesh, even the parts that will be hidden underneath the armor pieces. The wings are suitably smooth with no awkward bumps.
The design for the Trendmasters Rodan seems to be one of those “love it or hate it” things. I personally really like this design, more so than the Heisei Rodan design we saw in Godzilla vs. Mechagodzilla II (1993). It’s a bit more draconic than the norm, but I can really get behind its 1990’s “EXTREME” makeover. This is a design change that has affected many of the kaiju Trendmasters acquired the rights for. Rodan, along with the likes of their Anguirus and Baragon (Sound), look as if they’re due on the set of next week’s episode of He-Man after facing the King of the Monsters.
As I said, this is a design fans will either love or hate. But I do feel that in order to fully appreciate the wonderfulness of Trendmasters “EXTREME!” stylization of many of their kaiju, you will have to have grown up with them like myself and many others have. These were our first introduction to the world of kaiju toys.
There’s really nothing super great about Power Up Rodan’s articulation. He has neck rotation and leg rotation. His tail can also rotate around, but it’s pretty pointless. The wings are on ball joints which give him a pretty good range of movement. However, the wings do have a habit of popping off. Fear not for they are easy to put back in place. The wings can be best moved when he’s not wearing his armor.
Like the other three figures, Power Up Rodan comes with a trading card that gives a bit of information on the cybernetic pterodactyl. Rodan comes with several pieces of battle armor, dubbed “Ultra-armor” on the trading card, that can be snapped onto his body. There are a total of five armor pieces: one for each wing, the right leg, the chest and the back. Additionally, a “twin Mega Missile” launcher can be attached to his back to loom over his shoulder and a flying battleship can be placed on the opposite side of the back, just beneath the shoulder. This battleship, called the “Kyofu” (Mighty Wind) can then rotate its cannon to loom over its other shoulder much like the Garuda can on Super Mechagodzilla.
The Kyofu and twin Mega Missile launchers can fire plastic missiles via spring loaded launchers. This gives them a pretty decent range and, if you’re sadistic enough, you might find some joy by shooting your friends. Just don’t shoot them in the face. You know, safety hazards and all that fun stuff.
Now do be careful with these little armor pieces, however. They are pretty cheaply made and can break easily.
It should also be noted that despite the included card stating Rodan comes with armor for both of his legs and his tail, this is not the case. Only one armor piece is included to cover his right leg.
Paint wise, Rodan is pretty well done, if not simple though. He has clean paint on his organic chest armor and small spikes. The color of these small spikes is the same as his claws and cranial horns. The mouth is a simply red with the eyes an eerie yellow. The wings are probably the best part with a very fleshy look to them with some highlights within the membrane.
While he’s not my favorite of the four Power Up figures, Rodan is a solid release. His accessories look pretty cool on him and I’ve always liked the “EXTREME” redesign Trendmasters gave Rodan. It’s an extremely gimmicky figure that some fans that didn’t grow up in this era might just not “get.” Is it worth the $50-$80 price tag I’ve seen him go for now days? I would say no. Even as a vintage figure from the 1990’s, I can’t honestly say to bite the bullet and get one for that much. $30? Sure. He looks pretty cool on the shelf and is generally fun to mess around with and shoot.
**Below are a number of bonus images, including ones featuring the figure with and without the snap-on armor, and some size comparison shots.**