Tuesday, January 23, 2018


Magaidou (マガイドウ) is a company that produces gashapon for capsule toy vending machines. Some of their more popular lines include junkyard cars [trains, ships, spaceships...], Medjed, and figures made in the style of green plastic army men.

Their first set from the Green Army Japan (グリーンアーミージャパン) series was of figures taken from Chōjū-giga, while their second set was of a sankin-kōtai entourage.

Sankin-kōtai (参勤交代) was a custom imposed upon feudal lords during the Tokugawa shogunate as a means to reduce their economic power.

What caught my attention about these figures when I saw them in Tokyo recently, was that they were 1/72 scale. The figures came out in 2016, so I didn't see them in any of the gashapon machines that I encountered, but they are available from a number of different shops selling gashapon toys.

The original price for one capsule containing two figures was ¥200, which is about how much I paid for them. Later, I found places on the internet selling them for under ¥800 for a complete set (before shipping).

The first two sets consist of peasant siblings and a dandy (百姓姉弟&伊達男), and a lantern [carrier] and spear bearer (提灯&槍持ち[1]).

The third, fifth, and sixth sets consist of a standard [bearer] and archer (大羽車[2]&弓組み), a foot soldier and musketeer (御徒歩&鉄砲組み), and a spearman and parasol [carrier] (長槍&大羽車[2]).

The seventh and eighth sets are of a forward attendant [3] and chest [porter] (先祓い&挟箱), and a three part palanquin (bearing lord) (御籠(殿様)).

I was unable to find the senior retainer and horse set (御家老&馬セット) to complete the entire series.

The figures are made of PVC and are definitely toy-like. The sculpting is very basic, with thick, over scale weapons and accouterments. However, I think this is understandable, since they were made to represent green army man figures.

Here's a Japanese video review that give a closer look at the full set of figures.

[1] The word used here is yarimochi, which translates as spear carrier, but I think that he is actually carrying a naginata, so the term may be more generic for soldiers with polearms.

[2] The word used here is daihaguruma (?). I don't even think the Japanese reviewer in the video is super sure of this kanji reading. The only definition that I was able to find of the word [haguruma] stated that it is a portable shrine similar to a mikoshi, which these are obviously not. I called one of the daihaguruma a standard, though I think its a big bunch of feathers, and the other one a parasol, though it's some sort of dome-shaped item wrapped in a cloth.

[3] I translated the word sakibarai as "forward attendant" because that is one of the definitions of the word, but the figure carries a monk's shakujō which suggests that another meaning related to "exorcist" may actually be more appropriate. I decided to go with "attendant" because the figure is definitely not dressed as a monk, but it's possible I made the wrong choice...

1 comment:

Phil said...

Nice looking figures!