Edward Ju (gundam@loop.com)
Sun, 31 Oct 1999 13:03:41 -0800


Hi Phil, thanks for an early field report - you saved me a trip!

>I just got back from Bandai's Gundam Wing modelling event at the Santa
>Monica Toys R Us. I'm a little underwhelmed with what I saw there.

<snipped>

>There was also a table featuring two Gundam Wing staffers building models.
>The models that were being built weren't that extravagant - they were just
>snapped together with the decals applied, and a marker used to apply some
>simple panel line details. I shouldn't have expected Hooby Japan level of
>quality since the point of the exhibit was to show how easy it was for a kid
>to build a model. It was dissapointing to see that there weren't many kids
>interested in what was going on when I was there (around 10:30). The video
>might have been drawn some kids in, but I don't know how exciting it is to
>watch two adults building model kits. The only other spectator who seemed
>really interested in what was going on turned out to be another Gundam ML
>member whose name esacpes me.

This is kind of funny, because the first time I was exposed to Gundam was
when I saw a similar marketing promotion - some adults building Gundam kits
at a table near where they were selling these kits, except these people
were true professionals - they were building fully glued and painted 1/250
mobile suits from the Diorama sets, and did an outstanding job too. I was
hooked immediately and found the video soon after that. The rest is 20
year's worth of history. Too bad things aren't the same 2 decades later,
with a new generation raised by MTV to have no attention span whatsoever.

>Most of the staff there were wearing a really nice Gundam Wing Polo shirt,
>but regretablly they didn't have any of these for sale. Most of the people
>I talked to were members of the Advertising Agency Bandai hired to promote
>Gundam Wing, and as such they weren't real knowledgeable about the plans for
>Gundam Wing (let alone other Gundam series). There was one guy who might
>have been a Bandai or Anime Village rep, but I didn't get a chance to talk
>to him.

It's funny how the press release said "Gundam launching party at TRU"
instead of, more accurately, "Gundam Wing launching party at TRU". They
probably realized that "Gundam" would pull in a bigger crowd than "Gundam
Wing" for those who aren't paying attention. I mentioned about the launching
party to a fellow Gundam fan, but after he realized it was just Wing, he
refused to go because they weren't putting out Master Grade kits. ;)

>In any case, those of you who couldn't make it didn't miss much. I ended up
>buying a kit (1/144 Epyon)

$7.99 + tax? Ouch. Tell me if the 2 stickers, a B&W replica of the manual,
and a Business Reply card is worth the extra dough. Personally I don't think
so.

>but it didn't look like much else was going on.
>I build better kits than the experts that they had there.

LOL. I think most of us on the GML do.

>I left a little
>puzzled, wondering why Bandai is trying to push the show this early, long
>before it will air in the Spring.
>
>
>Phil

Trying to pull in the holiday shopping crowd, most likely. So there
weren't any contests or prize drawings for Southern California residents,
like they hinted?

Eddie

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