As a casual fan of artist Taka Tony’s work I’ve been keeping an eye on the flood of figures from the Shining game series that have seen release over the past couple of years, but when this Clalaclan was announced she was the first that really grabbed my whole attention. Sure the pointy tiara puts the Statue of Liberty to shame, and her hair looks like the pelt of some ancient Roman lion as envisioned by a monk calligrapher in the Dark Ages, but the winsome Tony face and the ample expanse of bosom put to rest all doubts in my mind – this was a figure that must be acquired, and the finished product is even better than I had hoped. Read on for the highly photogenic details:
Original Design: Taka Tony
Sculptor: Otoyama Houjun (Amiami search)
Source: Shining Wind (game)
Scale: 1/8 (20 cm tall)
Materials: PVC, ABS
Release Date: October 24th, 2007
Price: 6,090 JPY (tax included)
Current Availability: [KNC] [HLJ] [HS] [TL] [AAA]
Support HD!: [PA] [YA]
Not being in possession of a PS2 I have sadly not had the chance to experience Clalaclan’s Kawasumi Ayako-voiced character first hand. That said, it takes little beyond a glance at the Tony illustration gracing the figure box to see that this sculpt meets the challenge of accurately capturing her essence, and then some – while some slight liberties are taken with the pose, the same air of gentle composure radiates from her expression and her cleavage plummets just as expeditiously rendered here in 3D.
It’s hard to know where to start in rocking out with the praise for this kit. The detail work on the sculpt is absolutely exquisite, from the mane of hair to the frills on her sleeves, stocking lace and creased undergarments. The lines of the sculpt are brilliantly sexy, with the pose leaning forward out of a boring stance into one that’s casually inviting. The slightly cocked hip and stocking details behind the knee are divine, and the way her stomach peeks out from between her arms is… yeah.
In terms of production quality this is among the best I’ve seen from Kotobukiya. Molding lines are minimally visible and not at all distracting, and while the maker occasionally faces criticism for a lack of subtlety in their paint department, the signature Kotobukiya style serves this figure extremely well. While shading is only minimally used (primarily on the stockings, panties and hair) the fine detail work and lines of the sculpt pick up the slack, casting natural shadows with the contours present that make up for any lack.
Indeed, given the color scheme of this figure excessive shading might only detract from the otherwise mild ambiance. Her skin and clothing form the combined impression of milky white purity, one that benefits from the solid flesh tone; use of a semi-gloss finish on the skirt, blouse and shield is also a brilliant move, contrasting with the matte of the skin and undergarments in a very attractive way.
If forced at gunpoint I could raise a few nitpicks about the figure; the sculpt of her lower back isn’t quite what I’d like it to be, for one. In addition there are a few more flecks of dust or grit left over from production visible than might be warranted, and a close inspection of her rear end shows some markings left over from the dress following castoff. And of course, one can always wish for a fully detailed production beneath her blouse…
All that said, Kotobukiya’s Clalaclan is a very rare figure indeed. She combines a phenomenal sculpt and a color scheme that uses the quirks of Koto’s production methods to their best advantage to create a harmonious whole that will likely rank as my personal favorite item from the maker this year. Very highly recommended.
Overall Score: 9.5/10
+ luscious, detailed, flowing sculpt true to Tony’s design vision
+ mild, subtle colors work with the paint job perfectly
+ incredibly sexy whether cast on or off
o slightly more post-production dust/grit than normal
o I’d prefer a more concave lower back sculpt
– the base she comes with doesn’t just look like a Tupperware lid, it IS one
If you’d like to support HD with your purchase she’s still available at Yes Asia, though I can’t recommend their prices. She’s available ridiculously cheap both at Kid Nemo and ToysLogic, if you can wait until December; otherwise Hobby Link Japan has her in stock.