Unknown Bandai Kinkeshi from the Mid-80’s
by Professor Terry
I found it hard to come up with a follow up to MMMM #50 because it was my favorite MMMM to write thus far. Once I finally worked up the courage to write another entry, I went searching my collection for these.
This week, I’m examining a relatively unknown Kinkeshi line made by Bandai around 1984/1985 and possibly beyond. Each figures is approximately three inches tall. What really makes these figures different from all other Kinkeshi figures is that they have plastic bodies with movable rubber arms, legs, and heads. You basically have to assemble them. I now have 20 of them. I have seen at least a half dozen more.
Onto the finer details; there seems to be four different series released. The first are a bit more solid, have plastic bodies, and five different rubber limbs – two arms, two legs, and a head. They feature the main characters in the Kinnikuman storyline such as Terryman, Robin Mask, and Sunshine. These are stamped Bandai 1984.
The next series have the same build but both legs form one piece – so there are four limb pieces instead of five. These are stamped Bandai 1985.
The third series has the same features as before but the flesh color is a little different and they seem a little less solid. They also feature figures that don’t appear in many Kinnikuman lines. They are stamped Bandai without a year.
Some of the figures look really good: Sunshine, King The Tons, and Rikishiman. Other figures, like Ashuraman, are really awful. Bandai kept with their only-five-rubber-pieces-plan which left Ashuraman with four unmoving plastic arms as a part of the plastic body.
I was attracted to these figures for a fairly simple reason. They fit-in with my Flesh M.U.S.C.L.E., Deka Kinkeshi, and Great Kinkeshi. Plus they fill that size gap between M.U.S.C.L.E., at about two inches, and the Deka Kinkeshi, at about four inches. The clincher for me is that are articulated. Not much, but you can raise arms or turn the heads for posing. You cannot do this with other Flesh figures – unless you buy a Flesh colored 5 Star toy. Come to think of it, maybe I should purchase a couple now 🙂