I think Dragonball is stupid. There I said it.
I'm not just talking about the recent live action movie (which I think most will agree, was pretty terrible), but also the source material. Many of the most popular shows, like Dragonball, are just a series of ridiculous escalations of violence. Season 1: kid learns kung-fu, stops bad guy. Season 2: kid learns new kung-fu, stops team of bad guys. Season 3: kid learns alien super kung-fu, stops alien bad guys. Season 4: kid gets team of super kung-fu experts, tuns into giant gorilla, kills super bad guy, while destroying huge chunks of Earth's ecosystem. Meanwhile, you're sitting there watching 30 minutes of close-up coverage of the characters looking beat down and panting, as about 2 minutes pass in the actual fight. It's retarded... and they decided to make a movie of it. Giant gorilla and everything. sigh.
This time around Bandai is the one that got the license, though I'm pretty sure they already make the Dragonball toys for the cartoon as well. It's a much better fit than the Playmates Terminators which was a weird match up from the get go. Bandai's known for great children's toys from many Japanese series, plus their excellent Ben 10 stuff, and the Dragonball series is made for children, so quality toys that are made to appeal to that audience would do well.
When these were first released here, they were about p400.00, same as the Playmate Terminators. That's about $10, same as retail in the states. They've been on the shelf for months now, and if you wanted it was pretty easy to get a complete set and build Ozaru. IF you wanted. Apparently no one did. Now that Toys R Us and Toy Kingdom are clearing shelf space for Christmas, the toys are now only p150.00. Much better, but I still wouldn't pay that much for most of them.
The only one I really wanted was Bulma since the only thing I liked about the movie was Emmy Rossum and Jamie Chung. I realize this is completely shallow, but then I'm not particularly deep. Both their parts were pretty small compared to how much they had to do in the cartoon. I'd rather have seen the Tournament of Champions as a movie than the silly story they ended up with, but then that might start me on a fanboy rant. I'd have to break out wikipedia and frankly, I don't have the time right now, so let's not go there. It's too bad they don't have a Chi Chi figure in her babydoll dress. That would have gone over better than that crap Fu Lum toy.
At first blush, Bulma looks pretty good. Faithful to the movie, anyway. The bangs and ponytail don't do much for me, but her face is decent. It doesn't much look like Rossum, but then at this scale, there's only so much you can do. I'd rather they make the face look clean than try to hard to get the likeness and fail. The leather get up is great. She's molded mostly in black so the shiny plastic goes over well without the need for much paint. It's very feminine, and standing up, she looks perfectly acceptable.
But standing is about the only position she's good for.
Bandai really mucked up her articulation. Despite relatively nice articulation on the male figures of the line, which share joint systems similar to the DC Universe Classics line (though much uglier), Bulma suffers from joints that are pretty old school. She's got a ball-jointed head, hinge/post joints at her shoulder, v-cut hips, thigh cuts, and hinge knees. That's it, a measly 7 points. The v-cut crotch is the real kicker, making her leg articulation useless. She can't sit, squat, crouch, anything. All she can really do is spread her legs. Great if there was a pole included and dressed as a stripper, but she's not. She can't even be posed sitting on a 1/18th scale motorcycle, which is a ridiculous oversight if you ask me.
Making things worse, Bandai saw fit to give her among the worst accessories in recent memory. Her sculpt works in 3 holstered firearms which is insanely cool, but instead of making them removable, or giving her a pair to actually hold, they gave her that idiotic tricorder thingamajig she had in the movie. You know, the one she had to track the Dragon's balls.
Speaking of Dragon's balls, she's got one of them. It comes with this little "stone" display stand, but it's really nothing to gawk about. It's fairly cheap looking and made of mediocre plastic. It's not going to break or anything, but is its useless. If you collect the whole wave of 4" figures, you'll get all 7 of these things and be able to form... a bigger stone display stand. dun dun dun DUM!
They also have another value add piece in the package; a piece of the "BAF" Ozaru figure. Knowing how this gimmick has really improved set sales among collectors, you'd think this BAF would be something pretty impressive. It's not. The pieces are little more than hollow casts. When assembled the back is open, so you can pop Goku into this transluscent half-shell. There is no paint, only base articulation, and you can't display him from the back. Bad, bad, bad.
If that wasn't enough, Bandai even touts a third reason to buy all 7 figures on the package. If you collect all 7 packing inserts, you can form a crappy paper Shemron the Dragon! Score! Really, the least they could have done was make the inserts out of some kind of high quality card or something. Papercuts!
Bottomline, I do not recommend this line. Though Bulma is a pretty fair sculpt and looks great with a Scarlett head on her, she has some god-awful articulation and no useful accessories. It makes it impossible to put her in any kick ass poses. While the male figures have better articulation, they also look terrible sculpt wise. At p150, it may be a nice gift for one of your neices or nephews (one you may not particularly like so much), but it's not really something that'll add to anyone's collection.