Gao Falcon is a massive beast of epic wing proportions. It is by far one of the largest toys in the Power Rangers Wild Force toyline, larger than even the Alligator I reviewed a while back. The box boasts that the Falcon Zord has a 530mm wingspan, and do you know how that translates to inches? 20.8. Yeah, I'm gonna need a bigger shelf.
Here he is out of the box. As you can probably tell, his wings had to be assembled, hence the break along the middle where that red nub juts out. Otherwise he wouldn't fit in the box! Being a Korean release, it was really. REALLY. HARD to pose him, as the rachet joints in his legs were replaced by friction joints and don't lock in place, so he almost always wanted to topple over since the wings make him top heavy. However, posed right, he makes a majestic animal. In the show he would burst out of a volcano like a fiery phoenix when summoned, and dwarfs all the other animals that combine with him. ALL OF THEM.
Gao Falcon's articulation is limited to the feet, which rotate and move back and forth (so if you have a stand that won't collapse under his weight, you can pose him flying), the head which can be tilted down with a little tweaking of his Megazord head that is on a hinged joint just behind his bird head, and the stupidly long (7 inch!) tail that will move up and down and is long because it acts as a tripod in combined mode that is so effective I have posed him on my bed and remains upright even though he's literally caving in my mattress. His beak also opens and closes, thanks to a tab that can be pressed under the mouth. The wings can kind of flap if you snap them down, but I like to keep it up because they are already stuck in a flying pose.
Paint application wise, the Korean Falcon retains all the gold paint that was missing in the American version, especially on some parts of the body, the back talons on the feet and the tail, which had been completely stripped and an electronic feature added (so you can have Falcon screech noises, laser and explosions). Also the white legs were originally silver, but were painted white. Silver paint remains on the leg joints though.
Just to give you some comparison shots, here is my Falcon on display on the shelf, then compared to my Legacy MMPR Dragonzord.
His wings are so big and wide, he can literally give my other animals a hug or a pat on the head. XD
To combine him, simply pull his head down and snap the Megazord head back, and pull the feet up to form a clawed chest guard. Pop the arm connectors out from the sides and attach your favorite animals. The original combination involves a giraffe, deer, and a Rhino and Armadillo duo, but due to my preference for the one time used special combination used at the end of the show, I grabbed the arms from my Gao Hunter and a wild bison on the loose, then slapped them together to form the Isis Megazord Predator Mode, or, Gao Icarus Another Foot and Arm (no seriously, the Japanese show had some really unconventional naming patterns).
In the show, the Falcon Zord would use its wings to bind an enemy with the fake eyes that are normally hidden by the feathers that swing upward when transformed. In this way, the enemy is frozen in place allowing them to be defeated without the good guys having a fear of being attacked during the final strike. In the Japanese version, the eyes were holographic and could, when viewed from another angle, look blue and had round pupils, and only when looking straight on (which the monsters often did) would the eyes flash gold, narrow to cat slits like the one show above, and freeze you. The Korean release unfortunately is a single solid, normal sticker that only shows the final Icarus Bind eye attack.
Should an enemy attack, Gao Icarus can even move its wings forward, forming a reflective shield that stops lasers and projectiles from harming its majestic form. It is also the only way some people can display their Megazords, since, as shown below, displaying with the wings spread is only possible if you have a lot of room.
The head reminds me of those masks people wear at Mardi Gras. xD The feathered mask and the tiny bird head above the face is a nice touch.
A view of the back, showing off the giant tail and the gold paint applications, especially the hidden details that are only visible when the wings are moved forward.
Gao Falcon is a fantastic addition to my collection. The sheer size of it destroys me though, because I was so not expecting it to be so large! I mean, I knew it was large, but until I saw it in person I didn't know it was, you know, THAT BIG. I'm definitely gonna need a bigger shelf soon. ^^