12.21.2015

Secret Santa Part 2: Super Fumina

inb4 ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)

Preamble
Despite participating in the official r/Gunpla Secret Santa, I decided it would be fun to do it again in the unofficial round 2 of r/Gunpla Secret Santa. This time, the gifter decided not reveal him/herself. Neverthless, thank you for the kits and best of wishes for the coming year!
On a side note, I almost ended up getting a double helping of Secret Santa in the second round with an error in gifting assignments. Luckily one of the gifters with an anonymous account contacted me about my wishlist and we proceeded to figure out his/her assignment had a problem. The issue was swiftly resolved by u/pomegranateoreo. Thanks for being awesome, everyone!
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After the suit was revealed in the show, I knew for sure Sakai was my favorite character in Gundam Build Fighters Try. When Bandai announced Sakai's creation was actually becoming a suit, many face-palms could be heard throughout the internet. I, for one, knew I had to have one.

Background
Super Fumina is created by Minato Sakai in the likeness of Fumina Hoshino to compete in the Meijin Cup, the same competition his rival, Yuuma Kousaka, enters with his Lightning Z Gundam. Sakai ends up losing to Yuuma based on the fact that Sakai does not get permission from Fumina to create such a ridiculous Gunpla. Still dissatisfied with the ruling, Sakai is told by Meijin and Lady Kawaguchi to settle it with a Gunpla Battle.


For yet another suit that shows up in only one episode, it felt like a cheap way to sell kits. It has once again worked. Have I sold my soul to the Hasbro of Japan?

Thoughts
Feminine mobile suits are not a new thing. We can see suits as far back as Zeta Gundam with various styles from slender daintiness to chunky curves (I guess one could count Lalah's Mobile Armor, Elmeth, in 0079 too). The most ridiculous in my mind has to be the Nobel Gundam from the Fighting Century (Mobile Fighter G Gundam) - combining the look of Sailor Moon with Gundam is just outrageous - However, that position has been easily taken by Super Fumina.


This was a very different experience from the normal set of Gunpla I have built. Though the build was quite simple, especially in contrast to the Lightning Z Gundam, the pieces are very different from a typical Gunpla kit. To start, the polycaps are not a typical runner seen in previous Gunpla kits - it is the polycap runner seen in Bandai's Star Wars model kits of Darth Vader, Stormtroopers and its variants. This makes sense since both kits are much more human-like than their robotic counterparts. Secondly, there is a variety of plastics used in the kit - the apron that holds the skirt ends is made of a rubbery material that is softer than the polycap material. With differences like this, the build felt like a brand new experience.


Starting with the torso, leave it to the Japanese to add unnecessary detail. While the chest has multiple layers that provide great color separation, the waist section has a skin-colored piece, with the proper spine line and navel. This section will not be seen when the kit is fully built. Why not just cast it white like the majority of the kit? Why add the extra detail in the plastic? Obviously this is to appeal to the part of Japan where the sun don't shine. Needless to say, I started to feel uncomfortable while building the torso (at least it did not get any worse).


The joints on the shoulder allow for amazing arm articulation. From ease of raising the arm upward to touching the opposite shoulder, these arms are great. The hands are also quite different as the male side of the ball joint is inserted into the arm rather than the female side. The hands attach though a peg inserted into the polycap. The arms also include gauntlets modeled after Fumina's first Gunpla, Powered GM Cardigan. Unfortunately the gauntlets do not hold Gatling guns.


The legs are attached through what is modeled as Fumina's compression shorts. Though the pieces come in white, stickers are included to color the compression shorts into the proper pink. The build of the legs are very similar to the arms with larger polycaps in the knees. My favorite part of the legs is definitely the feet/shoes. With the square armor pieces on the top, the pair of feet were definitely made to look like robotic sneakers.


Going up to the head, more of the soft plastic is used for the headband. The details in the head and hair is quite amazing, as expected for the most important part of the suit. Two options are included for the eyes - flat and detailed. The flat plastic is included for sticker usage, but if painting is preferred, the surface detail of the other piece may make it easier. To make customizing easier, the eyebrows are casted in the same color plastic as the hair and is a separate piece attached from the inside.


The finished product stands almost as tall as a shorter Master Grade kit like G Gundam. Even though it does not have as much of the bulk, it will definitely stand above most High Grade kits. Unfortunately, with such thin legs, the kit is top heavy even without the backpack. This problem reminds me of the top heavy nature of the MG Tallgeese. Add the backpack and all its play options and the Super Fumina will definitely fall over.

Above: MG G Gundam; Below: HGUC REVIVE RX-78-2

Speaking of play options, we have five simple items, three of which are straight out of the Powered GM Cardigan kit - the two back mounted beam rifles and the handheld beam rifle. They definitely look small to Super Fumina, since she stands as tall as a 1/100 kit, but they are in fact the same size as the ones from the Powered GM Cardigan.


The last two play options are scaled down shields of the Powered GM Cardigan. These shields have a slot on the bottom to hold new effect parts. These clear green pieces feel very out of place, as most of the kit has a bit of depth and/or detail, these parts are very flat and do not really match the shape of the shield.


Besides the handheld rifle, all the play options attach to the backpack through arms identical to the ones on the Powered GM Cardigan. This added weight, as mentioned earlier, does not allow Super Fumina to stand on its own. Good thing Bandai included a stand. Due to Super Fumina's height, the regular stand is not tall enough, so a taller adapter is added to allow Super Fumina to use the provided stand.


This kit is definitely not for everyone: this Gunpla is one of the farthest things from a typical Gundam from literal head to sneakers. It is a simple build with few play options and relies heavily on its stand to stay up. If you are looking for a similar experience, you may want to check out Bandai's humanoid 1/12 scale Star Wars kits. These kits have a similar build but have more detail and play options for a slightly higher price tag.
Then again, if you like Sakai like I do, this would be a must have kit.

Powered GM Cardigan stolen from provided by Morgenroete Munitions.
Check out his review here!
As I mentioned before, I do not know who my gifter was for round 2. Whoever he/she is, thank you once again for the Super Fumina. Though the build was simple, it was definitely enjoyable. I am also excited to eventually build the other kits in the package.
There will definitely be more to come very soon. Until the next one, keep your cuts clean!