Saturday, December 7, 2013

S.H. MonsterArts Biollante Review

This figure in particular, is perhaps the most highly anticipated release this year because of the overwhelming demand for this toy and Biollante could be the largest SHMA figure so far. To keep the interest high, Fuyuki Shinada (original creator of Biollante’s model featured on the movie) oversaw the project to plan, sculpt, and approve the toy’s final design. The result, was a highly detailed figure with poseability that is fun to tinker with.

Design & Details

Front Right
Back Left

This figure captures a lot of key external components that fans identify with, minus four extra vines that Biollante originally had in the movie. There are thorns scattered on the base of Biollante's vines and sides of her body. Also, the spot on texture that fuses plant-like patterns with reptilic scales are superb. All of Biollante's teeth and tusks are individually sculpted, and her eyes are crafted to keep a mean-looking snare.

Half of Biollante's structure is solid plastic, while other parts, specifically in the abdomen, back, and neck flap, are made out of a softer material. The ball-jointed vines are the most brittle part of this toy, as they have popped out of the socket on a few occasions. However, each socket is rigged with a hard plastic cavity, made out of the same material as those ball joints, so these vines can easily pop back in without the need of a hair-dryer.

Biollante, much to fans' delight, does have proper proportions, especially in her preferred neutral stance, that is comparable to the suit. However, tilting her head and neck too high can visually seem a bit disproportionate a few times, depending how much is extended and at what angle she is viewed in.

Paint Job

Biollante comes in a perfect two-tone combination of hunter green and lighter green. They go well together like camouflage. The thorns are black; teeth and tusks are beige; and the eyes are light purple. The light-green crusts on Biollante's lips are a little bright, a slightly darker tone would've been better.


To heighten this figure's appeal, Tamashii Nations incorporated a light up gimmick, rigged in Biollante's stomach, that changes to two different colors at the flip of a switch, red and orange. The gimmick requires two LR44 batteries, which are not included with this toy, and a #0 phillips-head screwdriver to open the battery compartment.


Tamashii Nations has certainly done their best to push Biollante's limits in her range of motion beyond what was accomplished with marionettes. All of Biollante's vines are able to bend very slightly, but they also rotate snuggly, which gives us the option to have the vines posed in various 'S' shape to curled positions (I found rotating each segment much beneficial than bending them). All mouths per vine are also articulated.

One unique engineering feature on this toy is how Biollante is able to raise her head, or slide her back up, then curl forward to hunch even further to the ground.

While super-articulation is the main goal of this toy, this accomplishment came with some sacrifices in Biollante's aesthetic appeal. Whenever Biollante tilts her head up and down, the neck flap must constantly adjust to that level, but that panel also prevents Biollante from turning her head left and right without leaving a huge gap in her neck.

Size Comparison

Biollante is much wider than previous S.H. MonsterArts figures, and she is great in scale next to Godzilla 1994. Although Biollante is large in width and mass, King Ghidorah still remains as the tallest Kaiju out of the bunch, especially when Biollante is in her neutral pose. However, Biollante does kind of match King Ghorah eye to eye when her head is raised.


Despite a few flaws, I'm really glad that this figure kicked my skepticism right out the window.  Biollante is wonderfully crafted, has great proportions, and a far beyond expected range of articulation. She is easily one of, if not the best S.H. MonsterArts toy this year. My fellow collectors, if you still have your doubts about this figure, I urge you to give this one a second chance. This could be one of those toys whose aftermarket prices will only go up, if not purchased as soon as possible.

I'm not done with Biollante yet. I'm gonna make her square off against Godzilla (1994) on my next post. I hope you look forward to it!

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