Friday, July 29, 2011

Kaiju Taro World Cup Germany 2006 Pin Set

The other day, I came across this really interesting item, which I had never seen before. It's a set of 36 pins designed by sofubi makers, synthesizing their toy designs with the flags of the 2006 World Cup finalists. Companies including Gargamel, Sunguts, Rumble Monsters, Blobpus, Cronic, and others collaborated on the set.

Here's an example:
So here you've got Sin and Wombat's Chicken Fever + France, Gargamel's Zagoran + Korea, Heater + Switzerland, and Blobpus + Togo.
Besides the cool factor, I think the set has importance for a few reasons. First, the producer: Kaiju Taro. KT was one of the first Japanese companies to make original sofubi widely available to collectors everywhere. With their easy to use website, they'd ship to anyone, and many a collector waited anxiously for new figures to drop. KT also released Kaizine for several years. The free magazine served up drool worthy pics, articles, and interviews.
Kaizine #8
More after the jump:

Next there's the date: 2006. This was in the early stages of the modern sofubi era. Most of the companies we associate with the wave started in 2004-5, with booths at shows like Super Festival, Pachi Summit, Wonder Festival, and other shows that are no longer with us, like the World Character Convention and World Hobby Festival.
Blobpus booth at the 2007 Summer Wonder Festival

So this set of pins brought a bunch of makers together and is now a kind of time capsule of the period (though some notable companies like Secret Base and Real Head are absent).

Here are some more close up shots (click for jumbo size):

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