Review: S.H.Figuarts Rock Bison

Bandai has given TaiBani fans a lot reasons to lose sleep and battle for their favorite Heroes in action figure form with the S.H.Figuarts line. The line so far has seen the releases of Wild Tiger, Barnaby Brooks Jr., Sky High, Darkness Bunny, Wild Tiger Masakazu Katsura original color version, and Rock Bison. Rock Bison was the third figure released in the Figuarts line back on December 17, 2011. His pre-order window opened on August 1st, and like all Tiger & Bunny merchandise it sold out in a flash. Unfortunately, I missed out on Rock Bison’s pre-order date and woke up to see the usual “Sold Out” next to his figure. Lucky for me, I was able to hunt down and obtain him a couple of weeks after his December release over at Mandarake. Now, let’s see if my hunt for Rock Bison was worth it.

First, let’s take a look at Rock Bison’s box. On the left side of the box in a large black font outlined with olive green color is Rock Bison’s name. A quick glimpse toward the center and you can see Rock Bison through the clear plastic. Towards the center bottom of the box we see a picture of the Tiger & Bunny logo along with Antonio Lopez on the left and Rock Bison on the right. Last but not least, you can see the Bandai and the Tamashii Nations logos on the bottom right hand side of the box. In case of bootlegs, I always like to mention the logos printed on the box as a sign of authenticity.

The side of the Box feature Rock Bison in basic pose just as the front of the box.

Let’s take a peek at the back of Rock Bison’s box. Right away you can see Masakazu Katsura’s name in a bold yellow and red font along the top left corner of the box. Throughout the back of the box you can see Rock Bison pictured in several different action poses.

Inside of Rock Bison’s packing is a set of instructions. The instructions show you step by step how to switch Rock Bison’s hands, insert his drills onto his shoulders, and attach his breathing hose.

A closer look at Rock Bison’s packaging which includes: Rock Bison, 2 drills, extra set of hands, and 2 breathing hoses.

His stand is olive green with ROCK BISON written across it. Antonio Lopez’s name is written underneath. On the bottom right hand corner you have “Kronos Foods”, his sponsor company. Although the figure does include a stand, Rock Bison can stand perfectly well on his own.

Finally, after taking him out of his box prison, we can get a full 360 degree view of “Bull Tank of the West Coast”. The first detail I noticed with Rock Bison’s Figuarts was the ability to move his waist armor. That gives the figure great mobility.

Here’s a quick bust shot of Rock Bison. You can easily spot the product placement on his shoulder armor.

A close up of Rock Bison’s head. His bull horns, head protector, and bull ring are painted with a gold metallic paint. One of the things that caught my attention was the red cover on his face mask. I never noticed in the anime that it was shaped like a bull’s head. Another great detail worth noting are the very well-defined rivets along his head armor.

One of the many fun features of Rock Bison’s Figuarts is the bull ring. It was quite a nice surprise to find out that it can be moved. As you can see, it has a tiny paint scuff underneath but it’s not a deal breaker.

Rock Bison’s head from behind without the breathing hose attached. As you can see there are four bolts in a cross shape on the back of his head. The bolt on the bottom is where you attach one end of the breathing hose.

Taking a closer look, you can see that the same gold metallic paint is used on the top bolt. The two center “bolts” are a honey color clear plastic, and they are actually lamps for his Lightning Mode – in the anime they light up when he uses his NEXT power. There’s some engraving next to the bolts, giving the figure that extra oomph.

Here’s the breathing hose attached to Rock Rison.

One of the first things you need to do when you remove Rock Bison out of his packaging is attach the two drills onto his shoulder armor. It’s a very simple process. On each side of his shoulder there is a joint which you simply attach each drill to.

Here are the drills finally in place. You can actually rotate them without a problem.

As I mentioned earlier, one of the great things I love about the TaiBani Figuarts is actually seeing the product placement on the hero suits. Here we see a close up of Rock Bison’s sponsor “Gyu-Kaku”. The sponsor logo is painted on both sides of his shoulder armor.

Moving onto his chest armor – you can see a gold buckle along with leather belt strap that comes straight down the middle of his chest plate armor. There’s great detail on the leather strap, and the belt loops stand out well. You can also see Antonio’s brown body suit and the abdominal definition.

On the side there are two leather straps that keep Rock Bison’s chest armor in place.

As I mentioned in the beginning of this review, Rock Bison comes with two sets of hands. Switching his hands is just as easy as placing the drills on his shoulders. You can simply just pop in the hand in his wrist joint. The hands are also marked with L or R so you know which goes where.

A close up of his fist.

The alternative hands make him look like he’s ready to grab a criminal for some hero points.

There’s a noticeable seam on the gold plate around his wrist.

Rock Bison’s waist armor is held up by a belt that wraps completely around him. The waist armor reminds me of the tare I wore around my waist as protection when I was practicing kendo. Much like the tare, Rock Bison’s armor consists of three vertical flaps which protect him from the waist down. The well-detailed rivets form an intricate design pattern. This definitely makes his suit look like a “Bull Tank”.

If you look at the belt from behind, you can see a paint splotch underneath the right silver button. Honestly, I didn’t even notice this until I took the close up shot. It’s hard to spot with the naked eye. I must say that Rock Bison’s belt from behind looks like a thong because the strap goes all the way to the front. You get a nice view of Antonio’s muscular build in the body suit underneath the armor. **This is my panty shot**

One of the very cool features of the Tiger and Bunny S.H.Figuarts line is the fact that so far all of their feet have been made out of metal. This unique feature gives the figures a better balance. Rock Bison’s boots have a golden bull horn on the end. His ankles have joints that give him a lot of movability. Even the soles of his boots have great detailing.

Although he’s a bit heavy compared to the other Figuarts, he’s still very easy to move. Here are some “Powerful Action Pose” shots just like the ones on the back of his box.

I couldn’t resist taking a picture with Rock Bison wearing the “Let’s believe HEROES” sash.

I thought I should include at least one picture with Rock Bison on his stand.

I’m very pleased with Bandai’s work on Rock Bison’s Figuarts. There are a couple of little paint scuffs on him but it’s nothing that would be a deal breaker. His movability is top notch and although he doesn’t come with any major accessories, he’s still a fun figure. At the moment Rock Bison is on his second re-release which is due out in May. If you missed his restock, don’t worry. There are still a couple places that do have him in stock. He’s currently available at Mandarake (4,500Y), Anime Island ($53.63), Power Anime (53.99), and BBTS (59.99).

And now I believe our hero wants to add something, too:

“Ushi!” ~ [うし!]


3 comments on “Review: S.H.Figuarts Rock Bison

  1. I must say, you have impeccable timing. I was just contemplating on adding Rock Bison to my collection. I wasn’t really jumping for joy to purchase it, to be honest, but thanks to your very detailed observation I’m so gonna buy one.

    Thanks kirayamato44!

  2. thanks for this review! i have to agree, the level of detail that went into Antonio makes the figure not only pretty to look at but definitely well worth it. what surprised me when i first got this figure were the diecast feet. this little detail definitely helps Antonio keep his balance pretty well if you’re not using the stand.

    the second thing that surprised me about this figure – the size. put Kotetsu or Bunny up against him and they look tiny in comparison.

    also, be careful about that bullring (nose) – it comes off fairly easily, therefore easily lost!

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