Junker Woland

Friday, July 16, 2010

Gunpla Builders – Xtreme Product Placement

I’ve been waiting for the trailer to hit Le Tube before posting, since the streaming version on Bandai’s site was woefully wonky.

So feast your eyes upon product whoring taken to godly levels: Mokei Senshi Gunpla Builders: Beginning G!

To explain: Gunpla is a Japanese portmanteau for those Gundam plastic model kits Bandai cranks out each year by the thousands, and Gunpla Builders is a three-part anime project (handled by Sunrise, of course) made to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the aforementioned time sinks.

The series follows Haru Irei as he ventures into the exciting world of fragile plastic joints, expensive detailing pens, and the intoxicating smell of modeling glue. Of course, it just wouldn’t be a Gundam show, even one only quasi-related to the actual series, without the signature robots shooting guns and hacking parts off each other with laser swords.

Thankfully, Bandai has an answer to what otherwise would have been a dire lack of robot battling: have these masters of injection-molded Polystyrene settle their heated rivalries the way only nerds can, through digital avatars courtesy of the Kidō Senshi Gundam: Senjō no Kizuna arcade game.

Gotta give it to Bandai for knowing how to exploit their products to the fullest. First episode of Gunpla Builders hits August 15. While the trailer doesn’t have me too excited, even forgetting the exaggerated rivalries, cheesy video game fights, and the fat-hamburger-eating kid, I’m hoping the show will channel just a bit of that Genshiken/Comic Party vibe that I dig so much.


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