This French Doll (Cerberus Project) Kanu figure has a long history, starting life as a resin kit before moving last year to mail order limited PVC release and finally to full distribution in this alternate black and white color scheme. Like the Pearl Black Ryomou before her this kit is a glimpse back in time at French Doll’s craft before he fully matured as a sculptor, but nonetheless has so many charm points that I couldn’t pass her up – not to mention being the only castoffable entry in the Cerberus Ikkitousen lineup thus far. Read on for a look at how UArt managed with their latest PVC conversion:
Original Design: Shiozaki Yuuji
Sculptor: French Doll (Cerberus Project)
Source: Ikkitousen (manga, anime, etc.)
Scale: 1/7 (28 cm tall)
Option Parts: castoffable skirt, top, weapon
Release Date: May 13th, 2008
Production: Wani Books / UArt
Price: 7,800 JPY (tax included)
Current Availability: [KNC] [HLJ] [HS] [TL]
Support HD!: [PA] [JLIST]
Related: Cerberus Project Pearl Black Ryomou Shimei
I won’t waste your time by introducing Kanu here, as she’s by now become one of the most ubiquitous characters in PVC. This kit was initially produced for sale by Cerberus Project sculptor French Doll, and debuted at Wonder Festival in 2004. A gallery of the original resin kit can be found at Cerberus’s homepage, from which a single image has been excerpted below:
Original 2004 resin kit
Like his 2004 Ryomou this Kanu kit is a look at French Doll’s work before he achieved the level of sculpting mastery that he currently enjoys. The kit isn’t nearly as faithful to the original Shiozaki manga design (or either of her anime counterparts) as some of his more recent kits, with a kind of willowy and asymmetrical body design reminiscent of the work of his Korean compatriot Hyung-tae Kim.
Despite the incomplete grasp of the nuances of Kanu’s design or strict anatomical principles, the kit does have a lot to enjoy from a sculptural perspective. Conceptually the balance is quite nice, with the asymmetrical stance and the cascade of her hair providing dynamic lines that make the kit attractive from a variety of angles. Castoffability is a huge plus here as well, with a decent chest sculpt and my personal favorite element of the kit, a phenomenal rear end. That’s a backside that you can use as a pantry. Conversely her weakest element seems to be the legs, which serve little purpose other than making her taller. For a kit this leggy the way they’re scissored together makes it seem like she’s trying to hide one of her primary assets; the upcoming Sugar Mint Project Kanu promises a lot more in this regard.
Despite a production aesthetic very similar to her Ryomou counterpart I found myself much happier with UArt’s job here. The mere fact that she’s castoffable necessitates another degree of production proficiency to make sure the removable parts work together harmoniously, and the casting job reflects this with relatively few blemishes and no visible seam lines (other than those associated with the castoff procedure).
The paint job is still inferior to the original in terms of color choice, in my opinion, but the amount of exposed skin with its accompanying matte finish provides a much needed contrast to the chrome and gloss of her socks, skirt and sailor blouse. A much more effective balance than Ryomou and all in all a superior visual presentation.
There are no serious issues with the kit’s overall production, but there are enough minor blemishes that given the still relatively simple color scheme and large scale of the sculpt probably should have been avoidable.
UArt’s Cerberus Project Kanu Unchou is a solid, quality kit that I was pleasantly surprised to find exceed the (somewhat low) expectations I had cultivated after our disappointing Ryomou review. She won’t win first prize for either sculpting genius or production fidelity, but if you don’t mind a slightly awkward sculpt with a few minor rough edges she’s got some very redeeming points to her that I think will please a lot of Kanu fans and fans of sexy castoff sculpts in general. HD recommended.
Overall Score: 8/10