Thursday, 31 January 2008

Kotona Elegance (bikini version)

In the grip of winter, my lovely orchid, Kotona Elegance from Zoids Genesis brings the freshness of ocean waves in undulating in the summer heat. The tranquillity of blue skies and white sands are captured in her composition as she poses in her beach wear.
Max Factory’s vision of Rainbow Jerk’s pilot may be a far cry from the snap fix kits that permeate my happy memories of Zoids but the lack of motorised parts do not make her any less appealing.
In the glossy white ensemble Kotona is a hot contender for any swimsuit contest. Her aqua hair falls luxuriously down her shoulders while her body which arcs around the rubber ring float that she holds behind her back. The blue float doubles as a porthole to frame the view of her bikinied behind. She is the essence of summer! The customary suspender boots complete with their delicate pink seams coordinate with the lines on her bikini top that teasingly trace the form of her bust underneath. It’s the little details here, the play of material against flesh, of rubber and curves that makes Kotona a treat. The only issue to flag is that her face, though charming, is a little too generously full, making it a little hard to display her at a flattering angle. Nevertheless, she is a piece who never fails to make me smile, as refreshing as a bottle of ramune, Kotona makes me yearn for bonnes vacances.

Louise (Little Devil Version)

The appeal, arguably of tsundere characters is to be found in their hidden aspects. These thorny beauties are atypically aloof, terse and are invariably a force to be reckoned with. Yet the indomitable power of the tsudere girl is merely a façade, their charm is revealed when you cast off their gaudy armour to expose their vulnerability beneath.
I wouldn’t say I’m a sucker for tsundere but for the little noblesse Louise Françoise le Blanc de la Vallière I have an addiction. And so to Kotobukiya’s latest incarnation of the haughty little sorceress from Zero no Tsukaima. The sculpt has Louise in her negligee seated primly on a stool and with a riding crop in hand and commanding glare one would do well to obey her to the letter.
With my wariness of Kotobukiya’s hit and miss work, it was not until the Moeyo postings emerged of the kit on display in Akihabara that I fell prey to the tsundere charm. What the publicity shots had not revealed were the fabulous facets of the kit that makes it a memorable piece. First that the little nightdress is castoff, second that Louise’s demands relate to an action feature, to a pair of cloth stockings that can be slid on and off the dainty feet she inclines disdainfully towards you. How could I resist, my liege?
Admittedly, were it not for these things, I would not have run merrily to be my mistresses lapdog, for it is not by any means a piece of earth shattering brilliance. No, it has Kotobukiya’s regular artistic underachievement and lacks the integral essence of craft that makes for a stunning piece. Be that as it may, for a Louise fan and that I most certainly am, she is wonderful trinket and is all the more adorable when she is gift wrapped with a white ribbon around her middle.

Yzak Joule

Yzak Joule casts a distinct air of arrogance tempered with the elegance that only a plantinum bishonen can possess.
I regret that I cannot speak of his character for I know little of it but he strikes me in such a way to recall one of the old loves of my past, of volatile warmongering scarred beauties like Dilandau of Escaflowne. This is why, despite my diligent attempts and subsequent failures to get into Gundam Seed, Yzak’s image has remained in my conscious desire to claim his beauty as my own. I have a weakness for scarred boys, their marred beauty hints at fracture and conflict within their character which makes them irresistibly intriguing to me… – but I digress for this figure is Yzak unscarred, oh well, can’t have everything.
A part of the impeccable Real Action Heroes & Heroines series from Mega House, Yzak is depicted in his white ZAFT uniform that coordinates with his icy complexion and countenance. His pose is regal, the cloth of his military attire, trimmed with black flows out like the petals of an Arum Lilly. This is a classic piece that became part of my winter collection last year after many months of admiring from afar.

Monday, 21 January 2008

Clare of Claymore

The Claymore is a sinuous, almost serpentine entity – a cold blooded creature annexed from humanity by all-consuming purpose. Her achromic complexion and silver eyes and exude a bloodless chill, Clare is a lacquered parody of life one that has been altered and fashioned to a sharp and deadly point. Her beauty is at once both terrible and enigmatic to behold.
I regret to say that my enthusiasm for the Claymore series does not reflect my adoration of the lead protagonist. To quote myself, the manga simply strikes me as “a poor man’s Berserk”. It would seem that there is only room for one demon slaying gorefest in my heart and the dullness of Claymore just can’t cut it like the Kuroi Kenshi can.
Again, the figure world bestows upon me solace and glorious recompense for this tragedy by granting me a Clare of my very own. Mega House’s Clare meets every inch of my lusty expectations for the ice vixen. Her elongated body stands in cool readiness, the blade resting in her hand glints and beyond the wandering gaze her eyes are keen. The silent energy of her being is coiled like a viper, alluding to the indomitable force that lies within.
The ivory form is gilded with mercurial armour that runs along the curves of her hips in molten prongs. The vestiges of human fragility are alloyed with metal, which imbues Clare with magnificent fortitude. A cloak flows from the twin carapaces of her shoulder guards, it moves with the elements, from the direction that so holds her attention.
A nice bit of history she is indeed, completely sexy and cadaverous in one fabulously shiny sculpt that adds all the rightful substance to the character that the series could not support. Impeccable production and dazzling contrasts in rendering makes for one of the most captivating pieces in my harem.

Friday, 18 January 2008

Saber Maid (Alter)

Having not yet breached the depths of the inky pool that is Saber’s character, I have made myself content with basking in the shining brilliance of her image in figures. Saber is a warrior who encompasses both loyalty and honour, a servant who is strengthened by unwavering pride and dignity. It’s not an unnatural leap, therefore, that Fate/Stay fanservice has drawn on the theme of servitude and has redressed the female characters as maids.
Each girl has her been given her own individual style, set to enhance the finer points of her feminine charm. Saber, in contrast to her ample battle costume, is dressed in the fluttering flimsy ensemble associated with that of French maids. This irrefutably erotic uniform appears incongruous with her stoic battle façade and yet it works to expose the essence of Saber’s fragile beauty. Her fair hair and fine features are given an all new gleam which glitters from within the petite costume.
Alter really know how to spoil their fans. With the sculpting excellence of the impeccable Millimeter Modelling, Saber shines supreme in this 1/6 scale maid model set to give any goshujin-sama the warmest of welcomes.
The Flamboyant frills of this intricately produced piece are finished to perfection on every level (right down to the lingerie, which makes me clamour for a trip to Agent Provocateur). She stands tall, resting her outstretched arms upon the mightiest tool of her trade, a long handled floor mop.
The high points of the sculpt (of which there are many) are illuminated by the inspired choice of pearlescent paintwork that gives both her body and clothing an exquisite lustre. The sparing use of gloss work exists to draw the light to her eyes, her delicate polished fingertips and to the glistening curves of her beautiful mouth.
The erotica is high class quite befitting the lady herself, preserving every inch of her integrity in an ensemble that in its excellence thus suits her honour. Saber is described as the most powerful of servants and this release from Alter is a tour de force of maid couture, one that realises every potential of her character to adopt the image without incredulity.
For the full exposé on this beauty, I highly recommend a viewing of the stunning shots at both HappySoda & Foo-bar-baz.

Tuesday, 15 January 2008

Chichinoe+ Young HIP Cover Girl Dec 2000

As any experienced hobbyist knows, purchasing figures can be a gamble. For devotees of a particular series, character or niche, the model market is replete with booby traps for the fool who preorders by publicity image. I am indeed, just one of these daredevil darlings who plays her stocks first by reputation of manufacturers and then by the individual sculptors. And so brings me to the most rewarding risky purchase of 2007.
Incognito cover girl Chichinoe had something going for her and a modeller who has to his credit some divine erotic pieces such as Kanu Uncho Goth Lolita. I dithered back and forth until Heisei Democracy revealed the tactile extras of this buxom lady. Not only was she to be equipped with cast off options, but with the legendary power of “squishy boobs”. This convinced me that she was worth ordering, for with that kind of gimmick she’d be a sell-out sensation irrespective the final result. Luckily for me, she delivered on far more levels than I could have anticipated.
Sure, the boobies are great, the cast off and replacement job is neat (providing you keep her partially clad) but it was not so much her erotic dynamism that I found so appealing (and believe me she has it in spades). Chichinoe’s quality is in style baby! I loved those lace hold-ups from the first time I saw the preview shots, they were the essential element that gave her such fabulous fetish appeal and counter balanced the curvaceous body perfectly. The girl has nice style! She’s a great mix of glamour and casual, with her hitched up vest and sweetest detailing in her tiny chain earrings and metal bangles. These aspects make the pliable experience the figure all the more pleasing and complete. And yes, she has a pair of badass booties to top it all off. Luscious and a gamble well worth risking. Bravo Orchid Seed!

Ryoufu Housen Gothic Lolita

The final stage from Orchid Seed’s series of Goth Loli Ikkitousen heroines is Ryoufu Housen. After purchasing both Kanu and Ryoumou (the latter having been extricated from the horde due to her leaning issues) I couldn’t resist the beckoning call of another work from Orchid Seed’s most accomplished modeller.
This kitschy cookie, sits atop a little cushioned seat, her minty green locks hoisted into beautiful bunches adorned with bows and rosebuds. Ryoufu reclines provocatively with one knee raised, the frills of her underskirt flow over her milk-white knee high stockings affording a view of the most prudent panchira for the Goth Loli couture, a pair of puffy white bloomers. In a snap, this luscious beauty transforms to a topless state, revealing the elegant lines of her back, neck and torso.
Sadly this ambitious 3 piece castoff, is tragically shoddy, the seams interrupt the harmony of the piece and the eroticism of her naked body. This is indeed rather a shame as she has the most adorable breasts under the bodice (the cast off conversion was clearly made the priority here when she went into mass production as it is the only part that works to perfection).
This, alas, is not a sophisticated master work from Orchid Seed, rather, Ryuofu’s construction has the uncomfortable air of a rush job and this undermines the elegance of the piece. There are scuffs, traces of paint, smudges and a gratuitous seam at her waist and where the bloomers attach that mar the splendour of the sculpt and castoff.
Her pose and coy little face are her saving graces, preserving the charm that drew me initially to preorder her. Her costume is adorable, full gothic Lolita extravagance in all its billowing bloom. I adore Orchid Seed’s signature shading style which saturates Ryoufu’s skin giving a warm ripe glow to her butter rich complexion. The finish is characterised by smooth yet tantalisingly pink transitions across her flesh, delineating the meeting of cloth and skin adding budding beauty of all her ero points.
A frustrating piece for where it falls short but as a fully clothed figure Ryoufu’s beauty reins supreme, diminishing any creeping regret that might have tarnished her arrival.

Monday, 14 January 2008


There are times when a particular piece is announced, gets discussed in the figure feeds in piquing interest here and then it vanishes without warning. On occasion, the most stunning models disappear from the market this way, their evanescent brilliance leaving behind a blinding trace like after burn on the retinas.
After being covered by the impeccable Foo-bar-baz, Alter’s Aegis from the game series Persona 3 was destined for this fate. By the time I remembered her amidst my gargantuan backlog of invoices, she was history. A lesson to all that if something piques your interest, get the preorders in pronto.
By the power of United Publications, Aegis was recently acquired is impeccable beyond a level I could not have hoped for.
The Android body, sculpted by Fumiko Saito, is feather light, despite the appearance of a heavy industrial composition. At the junction of her limbs bare metal joints are exposed, which gives the body a steampunk quality as though it functions off pistons and pneumatics. With a colour palette as bleached as bone, she fixes a target in her sights with a purposeful stare. Aegis right arm is held before her, the gun ending in the tips of her outstretched fingers as she prepares to fire. A blood red flash of colour emblazons her chest and arm in a militaristic sash and fluttering bow.
Aegis is a vital piece in every sense of the word. She commands such abundant dynamism and life despite the cold combative form she inhabits. The details and casting are exceptional, even for Alter and the balance and attachment of figure to base is unbelievable and has unflawed structural integrity.
Utterly breathtaking and completely beautiful this is the purest image of automaton love.

Friday, 11 January 2008

FREEing Suzumiya Haruhi

And so to the centre work of the FREEing lineup, the pièce de résistance, the lady Suzumiya Haruhi herself.
Conspicuous in her eccentricity, her volatility and hyperactive spirit has made her the international idol of otaku everywhere.
Multi-talented and ferociously ambitious, the tenacious heroine has penchant for the extraordinary and devotes herself to the pursuit of ethereal beings in constant struggle against the mundane.
The potency of personality is embodied to perfection in the FREEing sculpt. Unbridled confidence and sex appeal, the tour de force that is larger than life Haruhi makes maximum impact in 1/4. As iconic as the sensational SOS heroine herself this is the definitive image of HaruhISM.
I could endlessly serenade this beauty and exalt each heavenly aspect of her form and composition but as every shot of this model ever taken seems to speak for itself I shall, for once, refrain from doing so.

FREEing Kyon no Imouto

I make little secret or excuse for my habitual Lolicon leanings, as a female figure maniac my intentions couldn’t possibly be untoward right?... Right? In any event, I have no qualms about acquisitioning beauty wherever it appears. Be it woman, man, girl, boy or bling, I am ever a slave to the beautiful things.
The little girl known by no other name than Kyon no Imouto (little sister of the show’s hapless male protagonist) appears as cherry coloured candy pink baby bunny girl. Her depiction in the Megami illustration can no doubt be cited as the reason for her inclusion in the collection due to the fact that the sugar sweet pose in her tiny pompom ensemble is JUST TO CUTE. The illustrators and FREEing naturally had the sense and good taste not to dress the 11yearold in fishnet stockings (she is not Kokonoe after all) and her petite form is most becoming at 1/4. Propriety be damned, she is utterly charming and flawlessly finished, the quintessence of adorable and a joy to behold.
Her pose, whilst similar to the illustration makes a daring diversion as Kyon no Imouto stretches her tiny hand out with exuberance, revealing more of her tiny body in the miniature costume. The piece is pure Loli-moe material, uncompromisingly gorgeous from every angle and as delicate as the finest bone china. Highly recommended for the intrepid and advocates imouto-moe!

Thursday, 10 January 2008

FREEing Asahina Mikuru

Constantly stripped and coerced into performance, the unwilling cosplay idol Asahina Mikuru always harbours an air of anxiety, which is compounded by Haruhi’s ravenous dedication to the random provision of fanservice.
And so to my first acquisition in the FREEing line, the bashful red bunny herself. To be frank, Mikuru looks damn uncomfortable, like she has just toppled over backwards and landed on her behind. Her face is a portrait of worry, her pose almost ungainly with her legs splayed out in front of her. It is by the ingenuity of Haruhi’s styling choices that Mikuru’s natural talent shines out. As a bunny girl Mikuru’s curvy body is poured into the tiny garment, her form melting into a slick red bodice with *real* fishnet stockings.
This is where the scale of these models works so well in their favour as the detailing, materials and production values give the set such an air of indulgence and excellence. The moulding is cast in such a way as to give the illusion of a pliable PVC garment, the paint finished to glossy lustre that stands apart from the smooth china finish of her skin. The natural reflections that dance across the bodice reverberate across the composition of the piece, bringing out the twinkling sparkle painted into her startled eyes.
With the 1/4 sculpt FREEing takes the method of PVC production a whole new level, one that operates on a whole new plane of compositional aesthetics and balance. In smaller sculpts, fine detail, delicacy and finishing tend to be paramount to their overall success and appeal, yet at 1/4 the modeller must convey the beauty of the character using . The FREEing girls are surprisingly weighty, their size leaves little option for flowing tendrils of hair or long, fragile fingers and yet, the Bunnies possess surprising delicacy. Working with anime character designs coupled with a simple one piece outfit, FREEing’s Haruhi works are a triumph, which celebrate both the appeal of the characters and the erotic couture of the bunny girl.
They are on the controversial outskirts of miniatures, approaching a proximity to life size dolls with the addition of cloth apparel and articulated heads. This may be too close for comfort for some but it is, I assure you, very much their loss.

Introduction to FREEing Haruhi Series

It takes a whirlwind success of a series to engender such frantic figure manufacture as to have the peripheral characters incarnated in 1/4 PVC.
Suzumiya Haruhi, is just such a show and to the credit of its unrelenting merchandising machine, the seeds it has sown have been cultivated into some of the finest blooms to ever to grace the PVC figure market.
Blossoming onto the scene in 2007, newcomers FREEing made an illustrious debut with their take on the Haruhi cast in a series of highly sought after 1/4 sculpts. Based on a heavenly harem illustration featured in eye candy mag Megami, the Haruhi girls have been masterfully crafted in fine detail at an ambitious scale. 1/4 sculpts are rare and often grotesque, poorly detailed, creepy or imposing. The FREEing series are none of these things. They are, simply put, signature pieces, icons of the epoch, of Haruhi-sama’s glorious rein atop the otaku popularity throne and of what may become to be regarded as the golden age of figure mania.
And so began my quest to acquire these fabulous femmes. As I write this entry I have 1 in the air and 3 in the lair, with but one that I have yet to make mine, I shall not rest until the quintette is complete. As sure as moe burns within my soul!

Tuesday, 8 January 2008

Shii Arisugawa

2008 was rung in whilst in the company of the beautiful 1/7 Shii Arisugawa from Kotobukiya’s Art of Shunya Yamashita series. Shii presents a double entrée of my own personal penchants, both megane and shimapan (glasses and stripy undies). In fact, Shii is a veritable pick&mix assortment of fetishes. As a plaited pigtailed school girl in stockings with a removable pleated skirt, this sword wielding wonder is a one stop sugar shop to serve a diverse palette.
Curiously, I held back on this figure for a long time. Why, when the entire ensemble of Shii is a powerful parade of moe motifs? It may have been my complacency towards Kotobukiya’s middle of the road production standards, or that her vapid expression falls short of Yamashita’s original sweetie. Nevertheless, to tilt her about in her packaging, affording a better view at her greater structural attributes, Shii’s virtues won out.
After experiencing the giddy joy of placing a pair of steel-rimmed spectacles on a model once before, I can confirm that this addition is what makes this piece. After all, for the megane enthusiast, beauty is not in the eye of the beholder but rather, on the eyes of the beheld beauty.
Where the sculpt triumphs is in the interpretation of Shii’s curvaceous design, which is supported by a delicious bone structure. This is not a figure that needs her token garments. Her hips are subtle play of full curves of flesh that hint at the underlying bones, snapped into the teeniest shimapan. Get rid of that skirt! Guild not the lily! All at once, this image girl makes me recall both School Days's Sekai and Mao-neechan of Kimikiss… KYAAA!
To a new year of Figure Mania KANPAI!