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Tacit Ronin

Pacific Rim
by yo go re

Having exhausted the four (or five) Jaegers that appeared in Pacific Rim's story, NECA is now plumbing the depths of the prologue.

Tacit Ronin Designation: Tacit Ronin
Classification: Mark-1
OS: Stellis CM
Weight: 7,450 tons
Energy Core: Actinide 235

Tacit Ronin may sound like a character description for Snake-Eyes, but it's actually a Jaeger stationed in Tokyo. And unlike some Japanese Jaegers we could mention, she's not covered in markings for the wrong country. The body is mostly white, with a few red Hinomaru discs painted on the shoulders, chest and waist. There's no mistaking where this mighty battle mecha comes from!

Tacit Ronin's head actually looks more like one of the kaiju than a Jaeger. Specifically, it looks like Knifehead. Yes, it's all sleek and mechanical and whatnot, but it still has a big long spike in the front. The rest of the head could have come straight out of Gundam, but in the context of this film, that spike is conspicuous.

Not since Skarr, Son of Hulk, has a character given so much of their body height over to just their legs; seriously, the waist is higher than the elbows. The design is very narrow and sleek - the torso, for instance, is larger from front to back than from side to side, using a forward pointing shape to reduce resistance. There are six Type94 guns mounted on the chest, capable of firing high-explosive and armor-piercing shells. Small "wings" rise up off the shoulders, and there are small vents on her back.

The legs look like a precursor to Crimson Typhoon - they have a very similar animalistic bent (or bend, as the case may be). The pods by the hips are "equilibrium modules," advanced gyroscopic sensors that analyze and coordinate the movement between the torso and legs, and on the back of the knees are cylindrical shock absorbers that reduce impact stress on the joints. The actual hip joints on the toy are like ATLAS's - multiple real balljoints in sockets. Fortunately, unlike ATLAS and P-Body, the joints probably won't break when you move them around.

Tacit's special weapon is the Fangblade, a two-stage telescoping blade that extends from underneath each arm. Improving on the weird choices made with Striker Eureka, NECA has made the Fangblades fully functional - they really do slide out of the arm the way they should. It's a little tough to get the bigger half moving (either in or out), but be careful with them, and eventually they'll go.

Actually, "be careful with it and eventually it'll go" applies to a lot of the articulation. Tacit Ronin has a balljointed head, swivel/hinge shoulders, balljointed biceps, swivel/hinge elbows, swivel wrists, a balljointed waist, the balljointed hips we mentioned earlier, double-hinged knees, and balljointed ankles. It's all nice stuff, but it's also all really stiff and difficult to get moving. Nothing broke or even required boiling/freezing to free up, but it's still tough to pose her.

Tacit Ronin may not have a major role in Pacific Rim, but it's still a striking design, and works nicely as an action figure.

-- 04/12/15


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