Let’s start a few weeks of gift-giving (or retail self-therapy) ideas for any and every ninja fan. I’ll kick things off with these 7-8″ Summit Collection resin ninja statues, a real throwback to the days of un-licensed figurines in the 80’s. You see these in Chinatown gift shops, swap meets and dirt malls, and all over eBay (search “ninja statue” under Collectibles – Cultures and Ethnicities) for anywhere from $25-40.
The sculpts reflect a surprising literacy in various ninja media properties, while skirting that ‘different enough’ fence so as not to attract legal issues. Someone somewhere did some homework…
These have been available for a few years, and come in different color variations – bronze, gold, black and silver, faux pewter and brushed copper – but the full-color painted line is really where it’s at.
There are two additional figures in this ninja line, a rather Alexander Lou-esque white ninja with gold and red details (I hate this pose), and a really lame two-tone blue figure (mysteriously out of scale with the others). These are clearly the dogs of the line and seem to be absent from more recent restock assortments at the shops in the wholesale district where I’ve found them.
There are also two or three samurai lines from the same company of varying execution and cheesiness. None approach the coolness of the Hanzo and archer statues above.
A bonus with these is the solid resin, making them rather break-resistant in shipping and they can take a good dusting – no glass case needed like with other more fragile and expensive pieces. Drawbacks, if any, are the paint details. Some of the eyes could use a modeler’s retouching skills, and you can see in the very first pic a lot of studs that should have gotten the copper paint but didn’t, so a few minutes with a paint pen may be in order.
I’d buy soon if you’re interested, as over the last year I’ve seen the weird monochrome versions become a lot more common than the color painted ones. I myself don’t like the fake pewter or glossy bronze looks, but certain figures look better without the sometimes questionable paint schemes.
All in all, these are a nice, readily-available gift that although new have a surprising retro sensibility to them, and can be had for a reasonable price.