Monday, April 12, 2010

Voltron in Toys (Part 2)

So, if you will remember the last entry was about the original Go-Lion toy released by Popy, a subsidiary of Bandai, (in Japan) and by Bandai American (in America) in 1981. But, the first toy to carry the Voltron III name was based on the same model as the Bandai release and was released by Matchbox in 1984. This is probably the action figure robot most American collectors are familiar with from their childhood.

The Matchbox release of Voltron III (1984).
I assume that the rights were sold to Matchbox when the toy was renamed and remarketed to American children as Voltron III. Like its two predecessors Voltron III could be bought as a complete set or in individual boxes (body, one arm and leg, the other arm and leg). Yet, it no longer carried the full complement of daggers, small missiles, and launchers that had come with the originals. This may have been due to laws regarding the size of children’s toys and regulations to prevent choking. Though, it did retain the blue face (when in combined form) of the previous two models.

Again, this is a die-cast metal toy. The black lion’s shoulder’s open to hide its legs in robot mode and the robot face is hidden in its bottom jaw. Both red and green lions fire their heads (which is never used in the cartoon and seems like a terrible battle tactic). The yellow lion has ear flaps that open to reveal launchers and a pop-up cannon on its back. The blue lion has a pop up head and a cannon on its back as well. Unconfirmed: The Blazing Sword was not included with this version and had to be purchased separately.
The above image was borrowed from this website.

All for now,
Your obedient,

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