Part 1: the Wind-up
This is the first part of a complete chronological history of all the Space Battleship Yamato model kits released by Bandai from 1974 all the way up to 2007. Each article in this series ends with a link to the next part for continuity. We begin with the model kits released in conjunction with the first TV series, which was just a small smattering in accordance with the risk of any new and untested program. In keeping with the Japanese penchant for hybrid words, “Mas Comi” was short for “Mass Communication.”
Bandai Mas Comi Series 112: Cosmo Zero with windup motor (Dec. 1974)
Bandai Mas Comi Series 113: Space Battleship Yamato with windup motor (Dec. 1974)
the first-ever Yamato model was a highly-simplified kit that was light on detail and sported a large friction/reaction motor where the third bridge should have been. More a toy than a model, it holds the distinction of being the very first 3-dimensional version of the famous ship. The tiny wave-motion gun port is an artifact of the early box art on which the kit was based.
See a video clip of the kit in action here.
Bandai Mas Comi Series 116: Black Tiger with windup motor (Dec. 1974)
Bandai Mas Comi Series 119: Analyzer Robot with windup motor (Jan. 1975)
About 1/8 scale, the first Analyzer kit included windup walking action.
These four kits were all Bandai produced for the entire first TV series. The low ratings and the Yomiuri Network’s reduction from 39 episodes to 26 drastically curtailed all such spinoff products, at least until the dramatic comeback three years later.
Box art by the legendary Shigeru Komatsuzaki