Superman beats them all

8.12.2020

Ken Yano had a dream. And so did I! Growing up watching Godzilla vs The Smog Monster, I always Ken’s Godzilla figures which took a ride down his outdoor playground slide. After years of dream, my dream to own his Bullmark 1970 Giant Size Original Godzilla figure has come true! Last week, I spotted on it on Showcase Daikaiju, the website of Godzilla Collectible expert Sean Linkeback (author of “An Unauthorized Guide to Godzilla Collectibles,” published by A Schiffer Book for Collectors in 1998). And I wasn’t going to leave it there.

Marusan Company (株式会社マルサン商店) produced the first wave of Godzilla vinyl toys in the mid-60s. Late in the 70s, Bullmark Toy Company (ブルマァク) purchased Murasan and reissued their figures and released several new figures. This Godzilla figure is one of their large scale versions of their three bestsellers: Godzilla, Ghidorah and Baragon (Linkenback, 1998, p 12). This is the 12.6″ Godzilla as seen in the 1971 film Godzilla vs Hedorah (aka The Smog Monster), which was not a prop but rather the Bullmark vinyl toy. Bullmark molded a beautiful figure in brown vinyl highlighted with green/brown spray and blue fins. The condition of my figure is “fine/very fine C-7/8 [with] usual paint wear [typical] in a figure of this age/size.” In the recently released Mandarake まんだらけ ZENBU #98 2000 (p 49) the figure is documented as so: ブルマアク•日本 ジャイントゴジラ (1970年代, 320mm, ソフビ)

When Ken was asked if Godzilla was his favorite, 「スーパーマンだもん。」 “Superman!” he replied. Well, Ken, my favorite is the Godzilla you were holding in your hands. Superman can’t beat this Godzilla! What was yours is now mine after decades of waiting.