I've got a picture of a cabinet in a shop totally devoted to MUSCLE/Kinnikuman in Tokyo... obviously it has only Muscle things in it.. and when I say it was totally devoted to Muscle, I mean the entire shop! Awesome... I thought it was so cool when I went there! Just one shop for MUSCLE! It's in a place in Nakano in Tokyo, there were some really rare and expensive ones.
I guess the pic's not too exciting but wish I'd taken pics of the whole shop! It was a small shop but big enough to walk into and around.. all they had was MUSCLE things! I really should have taken pics of the most expensive ones that got nearly a whole shelf to themselves, they were pricey!
The shop (when I went in 2003) was located in the Broadway building in Nakano (Tokyo).. out the north exit of Nakano Station, going into and through the Sun Plaza Mall.. this leads into the Broadway building, into there and up some stairs on the right... it's an older mall so the shops are tight and small... but there were soooo many.. for carded Star Wars figs, Playmobile, anime cells, random action figures, lots of Japanese robots.. also there's a Mandarake store for secondhand manga... it took us an afternoon to get through, seeing loads of stuff from the eighties was fun and nostalgic.. anyways, there it was, tucked in between the other stores... a whole little shop devoted to MUSCLE things... I wonder if it's still there now?
I hope it's still around, as I intend to make a holy pilgrimmage to this store someday! I divided the pic into two so that the load time is more managable, but I tried to keep the sections relatively large so that we can see as many of the figures as possible. If you study the images, you can see not only some Kinkeshi versions of your favorite MUSCLEs, but also other really cool Kinnikuman toys. Thanks to Zargo for sending along the pic!
Given the great interest in this store, I emailed Zargo again for some more specifics. Does the store have a website? Is there any other information about it?
Ha ha! That's cool man... people are interested in that mystical place! Thing is.. as you said, it's been a few years since I went there.. in that sort of shopping mall in Asia shops can die so quickly and easily... maybe it's still there, maybe it's gone.... I'm not sure if I'm gonna make it out to Tokyo this year... I usually go out to Seoul at the end of summer, so that's where I'll be... if I make a bomb of money there I might go for a couple of days, but sadly I doubt it...
If people follow the instructions they will find the place easy enough.. it's not on the Lonely Planet maps though... I guess with the instructions I gave it's kinda like an Indiana Jones treasure map... I have no idea if there's a website for the Muscle place...
Update 6/27/2007: Chogokin Jawa had this to add about the Kinnikuman store in Tokyo:
Please be informed that as of May 2007 it was still there in the Nakano mall ! It is one of the Mandarake shops of this mall and it is still dedicated to Kiinikuman. Unfortunately I couldn't take pics because it was forbidden.So the Kinnikuman Shangri-La still exists! Thanks Chogokin Jawa! If you want to see some of his haul, check out this thread at the Little Rubber Guys forums.
Update 11/24/2009: And here's another update from Lee Burbridge:
It's still there, and still great value. It was hard to find so here's a few hints should you ever make it over Tokyo way. Go to Nakano Station (Tokyo) and go out the north exit and head straight. Mandarake is inside the approriately named Sunshine Mall (which is not visible from the main street so you turn left after walking 2 blocks from the station-everyone knows where Sunshine Mall is so it's best to ask for that first). Mandarake and ONE OTHER dedicted keshi store can be found inside the mall. On the 2nd and 3rd floors. There are other Mandarake stores but they have very few Kinkeshi.Thanks Lee!
Update 7/9/2010: Tyler (uoozuman) has another update regarding this store...
I wanted to share an update regarding the Mandarake Micro Keshi shop at the Nakano Broadway from my current trip in Japan.
I had the pleasure this time around to speak to the Mandarake Micro Keshi Manager, Miyakoshi-san. He is as nice as they come, and perhaps one of the most knowledgeable kinkeshi experts on the planet.
After showing him pics on my iPhone of M.U.S.C.L.E. and Kinnikuman collection we quickly stuck up a conversation in Japanese about all things Kinnikuman and M.U.S.C.L.E. I mentioned your blog along with LRG, and he gave me permission to snap a few pics for all the the kinkeshi blog/site fans out there. He indicated that Mandarake Micro is the #1 Kinkeshi store in Japan, and said he would add a link to your site to the Mandarake site.
Perhaps my favorite part about the visit was the limited edition (300), keshi of the Mandarake delivery truck. It is the first in a new series of Mandarake themed keshi and can only be found in the Kinnikuman keshi store in Nakano. Apparently the truck was used to haul around keshi in the early days of the business, hence the keshi honor.
These people love keshi as much as we do, so please everyone visit if you get a chance! You can also buy from them online. Mandarake.co.jp
Tyler also sent along pics of his visit, as well as that cool Keshi truck. Awesome stuff! Thanks, Tyler!
Update 12/8/2013: Noah sent in another update on the Tokyo Kinnikuman store, as well as some great pics of another Kinnikuman store in Osaka! Check it out over at the Dork Dimension!