When you go to the movies, you immediately go into another world and this summer, when you step into Toy Sapien, you are stepping into a whole new Marvel Universe as well. For the summer season, Spiderman: Homecoming is the feature toy theme throughout the store. Buckle up for an adventure ride to see Spiderman in a way that will make you feel like a kid again. At the Jingumae’s Toy Sapien headquarters in Tokyo we see right from the outside that this is going to be something completely different. From outside the store you immediately see action figures from the up-and-coming Spiderman: Homecoming movie. If you haven’t seen the movie, some of the action-figures may look a little puzzling.
Talking with the staff, I quickly learned this place is a go-to place for serious collectors and novice toy buyers. Walking in the door, I was surprised how big the larger-than-life bobble head of Spiderman would be. There is nothing normal or too big at this store.
From key chains to bobble heads, it will connect with those who have seen the Spiderman: Homecoming movie. Characters are brought to life and the price is great from under ¥1000 to over ¥30,000 for Marvel characters. But more about those later.
Upon opening the door you will see the giant-sized Spiderman as he brings you in. If you quickly turn right before going into this toy maze you will see two life-size action figures of Spiderman and Ironman right from the movie. They are a big part of the movie and here you can see them in their life size poses. It is just awesome! The floor staff are more than willing to help you take photos with the life-sized action figures in full costume. They have staff members who speak English, and all are enthusiastic to be of assistance. Cameras are often going off as people are coming there from all over the world. You can hear lots of languages echoing around. As you move into the center area of the store it has some interesting actual props from the movie. Featured here is the metal case of the "new" Spiderman costume created by Stark Industries. And next to it we can see the life-size homemade costume Spiderman makes for himself. And finally the backpack he keeps misplacing.
The movie itself is kind of reboot but is set within Peter Parkers high school life and his struggles as he balances coming back from fighting with the Avengers to a normal life. The struggle is real for him. As well as his struggle to adjust to the working with Tony Stark played by Robert Downey Jr. And throughout the store, there are a lot of Ironman collector items.
Immediately, in the middle of the store are two columns of Marvel Avenger figurines from the movie and the Homecoming action figures. These are all 1/6 scale. You can put it on a stand that comes with it and change up the poses. How great is that?
The staff told me an interesting tidbit, the actors themselves had to sign-off on the likeliness of each figurine. And the results are just amazing. The two glass cases have many figures to choose from such as Hawkeye (sold-out) to Captain America to Buckey (also sold-out) even the up-and-coming Black Panther is featured.
When I asked about some of the sold out items, I was told the store tries to keep stocked with as many of the figures as possible. But even some of the Ironman figurines in the 30,000 Yen + range are still selling out. There is another branch at Roppongi but this is the Head office. And has the greatest selection.
But if you are asking: what should you buy? What’s the latest trend? If you’re on a budget, the bobble heads are around 1500 Yen. If you want to make an investment-the Ironman limited editions are on the high-end of things and are going for over 40,000 Yen.
An interesting item in the middle of the store and at the end of the glass-cases, it would be the Spiderman Pinball game. For only 100 Yen you can be transported to another world with blinking lights, bells and whistles (well, not literally whistles, but you get the idea when it lights up before you). You get to see the villains from other Spiderman movies like the Sandman and Venom. It’s low-cost to play to pass the time while anyone with you is undecided on which bobble head to get and needs more time.
It doesn’t stop there for toys. As we travel back past the giant Ironman and Captain America bobble head figurines that sit on the floor to about five-feet high we go into other Marvel and popular movie figures and toys in the back room area.
The first thing we see is another extension of the Marvel universe with Groot figurines and bobble heads (bobble heads are really popular). As the staff told me this is a really popular item and they are everywhere. And in the back there is an amazing back-stock. And would you believe it, they have a lot of Star Wars items? From Luke to Obi-Wan (currently sold-out) to Rogue One characters and you can even buy a lightsaber, there are many different colors to choose from.
The "other" attraction in the back is another ¥100 pinball machine. This one features characters such as the Joker, Harley Quinn, and Batman. And as well, the hype over Harley Quinn that had every other girl dressing as her last Halloween or an evil nurse lived up to the hype with her action figure being sold out. But there are a few Suicide Squad Jokers still available.
Toy Sapiens is about 15 mins walk from Meiji Jingumae station and will become quickly your "new home" away from home. Hurry down here because by the beginning of September Toy Sapiens will again change their store into something different. There is something here for every type of fan. And every type of Superfan.
Fans of the Movie won’t be disappointed in this coming-of-age story as Peter confronts the villain in a whole new way we haven’t seen before that won't disappoint. The supporting cast is grounded in high school realism. This story is successful because it is taken from the pages of today and makes his character so grounded that we feel for him. Watching the "bad guy" we will even start to root for him as his message is that everyone struggles to be understood. That is what makes this movie so amazing to watch with the family or on a date and will be entertaining for anyone.