Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Raijin

One of the best of the 70s anime characters was Raijin, or Laijin. He managed the crossover into the U.S. demonstrated by the above Marvel comic, the cover, of which, I remember too well. I recall that he came out of a mountain when the pilot/hero rode a motorcycle off a ramp into the opening tomb-like chamber in the side of the mountain. The following scan shows none of that:And at the end of show, when all else has failed to kill the enemy giant, Raijin would determine where its heart was, configure himself into a phoenix and ram his beak through the monster thus:As I was surfing around for more pictures, I came across this most excellent toy:I recently recovered this same toy which is in almost perfect shape (the fists have vanished, but it still has the shield-sword and bow). $6.99 bought a fine toy back in the day. The ad came from this vintage toy site.
The figure was part of a series:Here's a good close-up:Okay, now that we're thoroughly geeked out on that. Who was the real Raijin? Well, he was a Shinto god of thunder, seen here guarding Nikko's Buddhist temple:He's often with his good bud, Fujin, the god of wind:You may remember Fujin from the Suntory ad I posted a month ago. But I digress. Here's a couple more depictions of Raijin (I believe the discs around him are drums, which makes him one of the few gods that goes around with a trap set):I particularly like the following silk screen which shows the two frolicking about. The anime version of Raijin lacks the saggy breasts of the old god:

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

in some circles john bonham is a god. and he went around with a trap set. . .

mat

Jeffrey said...

I stand corrected. Say, if Raijin was up against a giant John Bonham - he could locate Bonham's heart by lining up to the vertical center of his body, and horizontally flush to the rim of the giant toilet Bonham's hunched over. Then let it rip.