If there's one thing I love to have dotted around the house it's a prop replica. Be it my Ghostbuster's Neutrino Wand, the transforming gun from Psycho Pass or the occasional lightsaber, there's something wonderful about the iconic imagery such nostalgic little gems evoke. A sort of entry into our world from another that's parallel, a little physical reminder of the sheer power of imagination and the way in which cultural symbols are formed by artists and embedded in the shared societal consciousness. They are, in short, our stories given form and a little bit of wonderment that quietly sits among the humdrum everyday paraphernalia of bills, notepads and recycling boxes.
Now, I haven't watched much Dragon Ball. In terms of anime watched or manga read, I'd have to say I've probably covered less than 1% of what's out there, but that hasn't stopped the show's iconography from becoming as familiar to me as anything from shows like Macross or Bubblegum Crisis, which I've binged on heartily. Goku's spikey hair, Akira Toriyama's name, distinctive style and even the Kamehameha battle cry are all well known to me. I might even be aware of the US Hollywood film, even if every single Dragon Ball fan on Earth has collectively tried to forget about it. But the one that's most familiar is, of course, the show's namesake - the Dragon Ball.
Enter ABYstyle Studio, who have created perfect replicas of the mystical artifact. Sat atop a black stand bearing a gold rendition of the show's logo sits a perfectly formed orange orb containing 1-7 stars, depending on your preference when ordering. The one on my desk contains 6, and whatever significance that has in the show is simply limited to being a pleasing number to my eye in practice. I do love anime items that have a bit of class, and this is about as classy and intriguing an item as I can imagine from the show.
Made from ABS Plastic, you don't have to worry about it breaking, but equally the lack of glass takes nothing away from the feel of quality or the heft in hand. The colours are really quite striking when the light hits it, and given how my wife loves anything with stars on, it lived on my desk precisely 1 day before she nicked it.
This, if nothing else, proves how desirable this is for both Dragon Ball fans and thieving wives with a star fetish.
The Dragon Ball was provided for review by ABYStyle Studio.