The Goodsmile / Alter / Max Factory junta just keeps pushing them out, with The Rumble Fish’s Garnet falling prey most recently to their sculptural wiles. How many enormous zippers does one nurse need? Will HD ever lead a review with something other than a question? Stunning revelations below.

Sculptor: SHIN (G・K FACTORY)
Source: The Rumble Fish
Scale: 1/7
Material: PVC
Release Date: March 29th, 2006
Production: Alter
Price: 5,800 JPY (tax included)
Current Availability: Backordered

Final Analysis: 8/10

Not being much of an arcade gamer, my first exposure to Garnet was a glimpse of this sensational resin rendition by Ko-nen of sculpting circle WAP (scroll down a bit for the pictures). Unable to get my hands on the kit when it first went on sale last summer I immediately pounced on the news that Alter was coming out with a PVC version of the character, though in a decidedly inferior pose; that along with a general tilt to the conservative on this figure brings it down from the 10 the WAP kit certainly merits.

There has been some noise recently among figure critics that designs are getting simpler, more formulaic and less detailed as PVC production continues to ramp up in the face of sustained demand. While I think it’s hard to make this claim across the board, there is something to be said against some of the high volume producers that this Garnet kit may or may not fall prey to. Looking through Alter’s product line this is the only item sculpted by SHIN listed there, so I don’t think it’s a case of artist fatigue – if anything it could be a trend in production to put out popular characters at the expense of originality of design.

Ultimately, though, the industry is still dictated to a large extent by the whims of the sculptors – and as long as those whims coincide with mine I’ll be happy. Can you say three PVC Ignises, anyone?