PHARAOH GUNDAM / MUMMY GUNDAM
Here’s another awesome Gundam figure which I know nothing about. I was buying a lot of Gundam figures back in the late 90s and early 2000s. The properties of my childhood like G.I. Joe and He-Man hadn’t yet made their comebacks and I was looking for some cool toys to collect. YTV had just began importing Gundam cartoons at this time and Bandai released these corresponding figures. It was the first time that Gundams had been mass marketed to North Americans even though the property had been big in Japan for decades. I immediately fell in love with the look of them. They reminded me of Robotech, the only Japanese cartoon to which I have any real attachment because it aired after school when I was a kid. Other than Robotech I was never able to get into anime. And Gundam was no different. I tried to watch the show on YTV and I even bought an animated movie on DVD but I found it all pretty unbearable. So I kept on buying the toys but had no idea what the background of the characters were. The figures got repetitive pretty quickly with Bandai releasing the same mechs (or mobile suits) over and over again with only slight modifications so I stopped buying them after about 2 years.
I did notice however that as soon as I decided to quit buying them, the figures I started seeing at stores were much more interesting looking. These new figures were based a the “Mobile Fighter G Gundam” cartoon as opposed to the “Mobile Suit Gundam” cartoon which the figures I had previously been collecting were based on. I was tempted to get back into collecting them but resisted; by this time G.I. Joe and He-Man and returned to store shelves and thats where my money was going.
Every now and again though I get nostalgic for Gundams and I’ll order a couple on ebay. Almost every Gundam that I’ve bought in recent years have been from the Mobile Fighter G Gundam series. The reason those mobile suits are so fun to collect is because the figures are intended to represent different countries and some of them are full on racist. Actually racist may be too strong a word but they’re definitely based on some stereotypes that boarder on the offensive. I’ve previously reviewed the English, French and Canadian Gundams from the series. None of those ones are offensive necessarily but you can see the cliched stereotypes integrated into their designs. I love it.
I’m not actually sure what this guy’s name is. I’ve seen him called both Pharaoh Gundam and Mummy Gundam. Either way, he’s obviously the Mobile Suit that represents Egypt. His headdress is clearly inspired by the those worn by pharaohs of ancient Egypt and it looks great. The rest of his body is completely covered in bandages. I’m not sure why anyone would mummify a robot but what do I know. Gundam figures are usually loaded with articulation but this figure has almost none. He only has joints at the neck and shoulders and they provide only the most basic of movements. The stiffness adds to his mummified authenticity I suppose. When I googled this guy to try and find out some information on him I couldn’t find a single mention of or a single picture of him all bandaged up. I’m not sure if he ever actually appeared this way on the animated series but I don’t care. I think he’s super cool and he definitely stands out from the pack. I did find a picture of this figure carded which I had never seen before. I bought mine as is , loose on ebay. Apparently he was included with another figure, a fully articulated battle damaged bandage-free version of the character. So it would appear as though this Mummy version was included almost as an accessory to the articulated figure. Regardless, I like this one better. 6 out of 10.