#9: ROCKY RHINO
Japanese Name: Gray Sharp
-The double-horns on this figure could make him be one of only two different species, but his pronounced, pointed lip makes it very clear that he is a Black Rhinoceros. The "folds" over his arms give him a Greater One-Horned Rhino-like attribute, but the lip is very distinctive.
-Most Rhinos are pretty much the same-looking creature, just with small variations in size. They're descended from ancient megafauna that extended as far as North America, but now exist in super-tiny pockets in Africa & Asia. Sadly, their famous horn has led to them being over-hunted to near-extinction, and various subspecies are as near-death as you can possibly get in this world. I love these things, though- much more epic and noble than the fearsome (and similarly-sized) Hippo, the Rhinoceros is a powerful symbol, and the Family includes what is the second-largest land animal in the world. And they are FURIOUSLY bad-ass- I've watched clips of Rhinos effortlessly beating the bejeezus out of a Cape Buffalo, to the point of TEARING OUT ITS EYE, and leaving it to eventually succumb to its injuries. These things EASILY fend off what is essentially a more bad-ass version of a full-sized Bull.
-The entire Family present an enormous danger to humans- rhinos are FAMOUSLY-grouchy (though actually less-so than Hippos), and their terrible eyesight means they tend to just charge things that they can detect via hearing and scent... JUST in case it's something negative. I mean, it's a Rhino, what's he got to fear? The only things that can kill them physically are Elephants (and this does in fact happen), and their only other enemy is us. Unfortunately, they are REALLY easy to hunt and kill, as they mostly just stand there, and rarely run away. Some Rhinos can weigh more than 8,000 lbs., and can run at 45 mph (that's faster than you). Their infamous horns can basically kill anything walking the Earth in one shot if they're accurate, and they'll just stomp all over anything that survives.
-Black Rhinos are a notch up the size scale to the Indian Rhino, but is smaller than the Javan. These are still Critically Endangered (three subspecies were declared extinct in 2011), and are extremely large, heavy-duty animals- many of them are kept under 24/7 armed protection. Not really Black, they are differentiated from the White Rhino by having a pointed, prehensile lip. Black Rhinos are INCREDIBLY-violent animals, with specimens being known to charge termite mounds or even TREES! They also have the highest combat-related mortality rates of any mammal- 50% of all males, and 30% of females, are killed in scraps with their own species! Now THAT is hardcore!
Toy Description: One of the early, most-basis Battle Beasts was still one of my favorites as a kid. I actually made the Rhino the LEADER of my heroic Beasts- he and his good army opposed the evil Lion's forces. This guy exemplifies so much of what made the line cool- an impressive figure. A distinctive head that easily tells you what kind of animal he is. His color scheme is plain, but still "pops". His armor is boxy, but still exceptionally complex, with tons of little details added. He's got a Weird Hand- a great "Spiked Ball" thing that just LOOKS like a painful weapon.
His face is very dramatic, with a pronounced frown (ending in a pointed lip, denoting his species), downward-sloping eyes, and two horns- one tiny one, and one very large, swooping horn. Because of the slant of his large head, both horns point straight forward, looking quite menacing. He has large, prominent ears on the top of his head, and "banded" arms and legs, though this is quite subtle. They appear more "rippled" than truly banded, save for his shoulders, which come down in a large, armor-like "flap" that covers the entire arm till the halfway point to the wristband. One of the more complicated early figures. And so, despite being only three colors (grey/yellow/red), he has one of the coolest designs of the early Beasts.
Colors: Three- his skin is a very plain grey. His armor is a dull, sorta-mustard yellow. His eyes and the lights on his armor are all dark red.
Armor: A pretty simple two-piece set-up, in typical "square-ish" shapes. The chest has a central Symbol, with a pair of red lights on each side. The back has a big vent thing, and there are rectangular boxes & indents all over the thing as well. There's even a little '86 written to the right of the vent, while "Hasbro" is written right below the armor, but grey like the skin it sits on. The codpiece has a lot of extra details, too- lots of reliefs and shapes. There's also a prominent "9" on his butt. His shoulder pads are among the most distinctive- very simple trapezoidal shapes, but with three prominent "spikes", reflecting his horns a bit. His right wristband is a very plain rectangle with a lot of details on it, and the left one mimics it, but ALSO has a huge sharkfin-like spike sticking out the side. His boots are quite bulky, with large portions sticking out everywhere (including the kneepads, which have red trapezoids on them). A little "C" is on the back of the right boot, while the Takara trademark info is on the left.
Weapon: Like a lot of the ealry guys, it's kind of a... big, silver, abstract... thing. It's a polearm thing, but ends in a little ballpoint, and has two crooked spires that point downards, the front one bigger than that in the rear. It's very peculiar.
Hands & Feet: His right hand is mitten-like (but has a single fingernail on the pointer), while his left is a large, grey sphere with a spike on the five cardinal directions- front, back, left, right & bottom. He has pretty narrow feet, with three toes (complete with nails) on the front, and one nailed-toe on the back.
Easily-Broken Bits: Expect some paint-wear on his armor. I would imagine the ears are easy to damage, but all three of mine look fine.
Had it as a Kid: Yep, but unlike MOST of my childhood favorites and "important" Beasts, he has a TON of playwear- rubbed-off red lights, no Chest Symbol, bad paintwear on all of the "points", and two missing arms! I was actually a bit shocked by this, as my faves were usually in good shape. My eBay buying spree eventually consisted of me getting a two-armed, "brown-Symbol" version with a missing rub-piece, and later, a much better version in good shape. That one I actually paid specifically for from one of the "good, non-lot-based sellers", as he was a childhood favorite I wanted intact.
Variants: There are dull yellow and bright yellow versions, and right after I typed "but all of mine look the same", I checked, and sure enough, the one in the best condition is a clearly darker yellow than the other two. So there you go.
Overall Score: 8/10 (one of the best of the early ones, and one of my faves overall)
Edited by Jabroniville, 03 May 2018 - 10:22 PM.