The Bandai Limited Edition Godzilla

The 1984 Godzilla Boom


It was 1984 and I coveted the giant Godzilla in the window. I had never seen such a thing. The Bandai Limited Edition Godzilla (バンダイ限定版ゴジラ) released during the great Godzilla toy boom to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the release of Godzilla (1954). What happened in Japan reached America’s shores and the display shelf of Rocketships & Accessories. There I was first introduced to Bandai figures and my small Japanese Godzilla collection began. But my desire for this amazing Bandai figure was a dream delayed but not denied. It was reissued in 1988 and it was my Christmas gift in 1991. I can report today, after 38 years of waiting, the original Bandai Limited Edition Godzilla is in my possession. And it lives up to my expectations and more.

The 1984 original release outpaces and outclasses its 1988 reissue. Its statue is upright and its proportions are far superior. The reissue has hour-glass shaped hips making its front view look very distorted and off. The sculpt and shape of the original is based upon the 1982 Banzai 55cm MosuGoji kit (初版1982年バンザイモスゴジ) created by Masao Inoue (井上雅夫), showcased along with his other kits in Monster Catalog 3D (1984). I really wish I had one and I didn’t know the Bandai figure was based upon it.

The Limited Edition has other distinguishing features, particularly the white and silver paint application on the toes and dorsal fins. The inside mouth is painted red making his demeanor more ferocious. The bottom left foot is inscribed with “BANDAI POPY JAPAN 1984 ©東宝•東宝映像.”

With the arrival of my favorite Bandai figure, I have every Bandai Godzilla figure and collectible advertised on the back cover of Monster Catalog in 3D, which was my first Godzilla toy catalog and wishlist. I’m grateful to the former Japanese owner and seller on Buyee Japan, who kept it in great condition. It now has a great home.