Friday, 30 December 2011

1/8 Makise Kurisu (Kotobukiya)

Here at Poke the Merch, we strive to be on top of things. Therefore, it is our sworn duty to inform our peers of upcoming figure re-releases.

I procrastinated on reviewing Makise Kurisu. All photos were taken. All witty commentary prepared. Yet in the busy highway we call life, I neglected to upload anything substantial. Happily, Kotobukiya's 1/8 Makise Kurisu is getting a re-release in January and I swore to review her before then. With a deadline looming above my head, I finally kicked myself and threw together something half decent.

I'll be forthright. Kotobukiya isn't my favourite figure company. In fact, it doesn't even rank in my top three. Their products end up being hit or miss, so I was expecting the worst with Kurisu. Fortunately, she was surprisingly high-quality. Teaches me to get down on myself, huh?

Kurisu comes in a tall grundgy box. For a box it's attractive. The original art is printed on the back. Then again, I to like grundgy themes, so it's no surprise this box spoke to me. It said "Buy me, Jenn, buy me" and I obeyed. Hail the box.

See, I have a confession to make. I never actually made it through Steins;Gate despite all the rave reviews it's gotten, so I know very little of Kurisu's character. So what drove me to buy this figure? One word: The base (Ok, that was two words).

There's something very attractive about Kurisu's zero-gravity throne of rusted mechanical cogs. It's not everyday a figure actually looks like she's floating (an exception to this would be Miku Append). Kurisu is perched solidly on her bouyant gears, which slot into her leg. On the downside, this gives her some obvious leg gouges. On the bright side, no one in their right mind would display her without the cogs, so the gouges will almost always be covered.

On a side note, her legs are impossibly long. She could probably spin kick someone three meters away without having to move at all—probably.

Kurisu's grounded by a semi-transparent gear, which, with some imagination, can be imagined right out of the picture, leaving Kurisu essentially balanced on nothing.

Invisibility is a virtue!
Kurisu has a winning poker face. It's not despondent, or pouty, or even analytical. At most, her face can be described as uninterested, like she just can't bring herself to give a fuck damn. It's refreshing to see a bored face amidst all the exaggerated peppiness of the figure world. Her eyes have the same circular pattern as BRS's.

When I first got her, I thought it was a shame her hair was missing out on the snazzy levitation. As time passed, the straighness grew on me. I found it highlighted her deadpan gaze. And, of course, it was true to the art.

P-p-p-poke her face.
Kurisu's semi-crossed arms spell confidence, but her curled fingers spell insecurity. There's quiet beauty in her ambiguity.

This figure might seem dull with its brown, brown, brown, and touch of khaki, but there are specks of colour in opportune places. Her collar is lined with blue and her tie adds a splash of red. The coat sliding from her shoulders gives her a touch of sensuality.

Not all figures look good in profile shots, but Kurisu looks great at all angles! That's what happens when you're beautiful, I assume.

Kurisu's hair is not completely opaque. It's shaded with a gradient, and under certain lighting, it almost looks red. They used the same semi-transparent material on her hair as they did on her tie, and I'm not sure how I feel about it. Sometimes it strikes me as a delightful idiosyncracy, but sometimes it just looks like congealed gel.

On the bright side, Kotobukiya managed to nuke her bang-seam by piecing her hair together in several pieces (5, I think). If you look closely, you can see where one piece begins and the other ends, but it's not an obvious enough to distract. Given my hatred for seam lines, any sort of attempt to obliterate them earns the manufacturer a solid thumb's up.

 Overall, Kotobukiya surprised me with their paint job. For once they managed to stay within the lines. There are no blotches or slip ups anywhere. As an added plus, they patterned Kurisu's coat. Again, Kurisu's not shaded as deeply as she could have been, but luckily for Kotobukiya, it plays well into Kurisu's duller atmosphere. I wouldn't have complained if they stuck more depth in her leggings or hair though.

Not much shading, but just the right amount of grundge.
That being said, Kurisu is not without roughness. There are spots on her hair where the sculpt scrunches up. Thankfully, these seem to be her only sculpting errors.

Mmm, lumpy...
I have boots like Kurisu's, and I love them. By proxy, I also love Kurisu 's boots. I know nada of her character, but she could stomp some serious shit with those boots. I was surprised by the tiny details on them. I haven't a picture, but the treads are sculpted as well.

I'm surprised by the amount of detail put into Kurisu's figure, and by this, I really mean I'm surprised by the amount of detail Kotobukiya's put into this figure. For one, look at that tiny zipper on Kurisu's boots! I'm also glad they decided to include the falling cell phone. Not only does it add a touch of red to her bottom, but the buttons are delightfully 3D.

Now, to the gears. Do I adore the gears? Absolutely. Are they everything I've been looking for? Yes, and more.

The gears are not only a purely unique addition to this figure, but immensely detailed. Pick one up, put it under the light, and it glows as though possessed. On closer examination, you'll notice they've been textured to look rusted or grimy.

Never has something so ugly been so attractive.

Recently, I've been disappointed Kotobukiya. I find their older products much better than their contemporary ones. Their paint job tends to be shoddy. Their sculpt isn't always top-notch. Their bases can be downright ugly (I'm looking at you, Shining series).

Thankfully, Makise Kurisu came out lovely. The unique cog base is enough to warrent plaudits, and her deadpan expression is something seldom found in the figure world. Oh, and short shorts. who loves short shorts? Everybody, naturally.

On the downside, I'm disappointed they didn't put any fold or transparency in her leggings. Perhaps Kurisu wears opaque leggings? I wouldn't know, I haven't seen Steins;Gate, but without something to indicate fabric, her leggings might as well be painted on. Her hair is also an aspect of contention. Still, she's not as bad as I feared she would be.

If you missed out on her, Kurisu is set for a re-release in January. GSC is also releasing a rendition of her soon (although her lack of gears in GSC's version is a little disappointing).

(I've had these brushes for so long I forgot who made them. All compliments go towards the original creators, of course. I apologise for my unworthy memory.)

The Run-Down

Packaging: 7/10 (I actually like this one)
Base: 10/10 (Beautiful)
Pose: 9/10 (Pensive and beautiful, but could use a little hair action)
Sculpt: 7.5/10 (Could be improved in some areas)
Paint: 7.5/10 (Not much shading, but the grundge is nice)
Overall: 8/10 (She's surprisingly nice)

Company: Kotobukiya
Price: 7800 yen
Purchased from: AmiAmi

Signing out!

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