*Gasp* A review? That’s right, I’m getting back to conquering my review pile! Writing reviews doesn’t take that long actually(about two hours to type), what holds me up is the pictures! Some reviews have been waiting for months just because I haven’t gotten to do the fun photos at the end yet. Sigh~ Either way, today the pile will be whittled down a little by figma Karen Araragi by Max Factory!
Karen is the justice-seeking younger sister of Koyomi Araragi in the popular “Monogatari” series. She and her sister Tsukihi are known as the Fire Sisters and are lead characters in Nisemonogatari(they appear briefly in Bakemonogatari as well). Like her clothing suggests, Karen is extremely athletic and is even capable of carrying her older brother on her shoulders.
Karen and Tsukihi were announced last Wonderfestival, and although I’m by no means a set completionist, I decided to buy them both just because I knew the series they’re from(it’s hard to explain some purchases…). Now that I’m familiar with the characters, I can say that Tsukihi is my favorite of the sisters, but having Karen isn’t so bad since it’s nice having the whole Araragi family. Quite honestly, a lot of Monogatari figmas make it into my collection because of how thoroughly pleased I was with Arararagi and Hachikuji. That being said, I have no extreme affection for the character, so let’s see if she can win my heart based on aesthetics!
The box is covered in a honeycomb pattern with little bees and puffs of colored smoke. This design is an excellent representation of Karen’s opening from the anime and I love it! I’m sure this design will stick out nicely on a shelf, and just by looking at it I can hear Marshmallow Justice.
There aren’t many female figmas with shorts, and baggy ones like these are even less common. Karen’s are constructed like Len Kagamine’s– soft PVC draped over an underlying layer which is part of her legs. It gives them the desired bulky look without you having to worry about the plastic distorting.
I’d say Karen’s outfit translated well into figure form with the exception of her…butt. I suppose the diaper butt is standard with figmas in long shorts or pants, but it undeniably diminishes the figure’s attractiveness from behind.
Of course no figma is a figma without a generous selection of optional parts! Being the expressive girl she is, Karen comes with three faces:
Standard, winking, and angry.
Karen’s standard face isn’t bland, her cheerful wink expresses her competitive athleticism, and her angry yell adds some much appreciated variety. I suppose the only other face I could’ve wanted would be a guilty blush(for Arararagi of course), but these three work nicely.
To accentuate Karen’s facial variety is a plethora of interchangeable hands.
Fists, open hands, clutching hands
a hand to compliment her wink, hands to allow her to link with Tsukihi, and gripping hands so she can hold whatever you can think of!
In addition to Karen’s standard accessories are her character specific accessories.
The effect part consists of three clear pieces of plastic(a long part and two explosions). It connects into Arararagi’s back and will also fit into the backs of other figmas, essentially allowing you to pose any of your figmas getting a beat down.
The parts fit snugly, but I’d advise being careful with them once they’re put together. I dropped mine and noticed cracks afterwards.
All right! Now for the fun part! Let’s see what fun we can have with Karen!
Objectively Karen is a solid release. She has decent(although not spectacular, where’s my toothbrush?) accessories, identifiable clothing, and a good sculpt.
Subjectively I’m not wowed by her. Like I mentioned before, Karen is not my favorite character, so I’m not thrilled to own her figma. However I do believe that her playability will increase when paired with her sister Tsukihi–who’s review will be next. Until then, I’d recommend this figma to fans of Karen or the Monogatari series.
By the way, this is my first review of 2013! Woohoo!