There are a few classic anime mecha designs that deserve their own toys and the AV-98 Ingram 1, known as “Alphonse” from Mobile Police Patlabor, is definitely one of them. Bandai has done a thoroughly incredible job here for a figure so compact and it’s clear that the Robot Damashii toy line is just getting better and better with each new release.
Patlabor deals with an alternate future set in the ’90s where humanoid mecha known as “labors” are now part of everyday life. Mostly used in construction, they also have other uses and even have military models. Naturally, with the increase of labors across the world, that in turn has created labor-related crime.
As such “patrol labors” were created, or Patlabor for short. The anime deals with a section of the Japanese police force that has its own Patlabors, notably the three AV-98 Ingrams as manufactured by Shinohara industries.
The series started out with an excellent OVA that resolved into an even better movie. It merged realistic mecha combat with detective oriented stories, with a wonderfully warm and funny cast to boot.
Following the movie, the series was rebooted into a longer running TV series (shown below). It’s this TV series that this toy is technically from.
I say “technically” because the Ingram doesn’t really deviate at all between the OVAs, movies, or TV series. The design itself, penned by the amazing Yutaka Izubuchi, is incredibly well wrought and quickly became an anime icon in its own right.
As such, if you’re a fan of any of the animated versions of Patlabor, then this version of the Ingram will suffice for that purpose.
This toy also includes the Type 98 Special Command Vehicle, to scale, which is a wonderful addition and entirely welcome with it.
Keep an eye out for the review, as this is a great little toy!