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Since it's been a while, I thought it about time for me to introduce another one of my girls to the denizens of Dooyoo. Coming from 1988, Takaya Noriko is an intergalactic light-speed travelling pilot of a mecha called a GunBuster, created by Hideaki Anno's animation studio GAINAX in their very first production, the six-episode straight-to-video anime "Aim for the Top! GunBuster." Being the main heroine, the story is very much about Noriko's growth from a fairly clumsy and unskilled little girl, to a confident fighting pilot who has to deal with alien invasions, her own personal self-esteem problems, as well as the fact that her space travels through space-time causes herself to speed through even decades within only minutes, at which time the world and friends that she leaves behind may no longer be there when she returns back home. Yet she still fights on and never gives up. Sculpted by the famed Japanese sculptor Bome for his Kayodo produced line up "Mon-Sieur Bome Collection" as his volume 18 offering, Noriko is one of his more restrained sculpts in both the pose as well as choice of garment, adhering closely to the way she appeared in the series without pushing needless, over-sexified fan service down on the poor girl's back... though I suppose her standard uniform handles that little detail almost by itself anyway. Now there will undoubtedly be comparison to the earlier figure of Noriko from Kotobukiya, who is considerably more dynamically posed, as well as perhaps better showing a sense of her positive attitude than Bome's version, but as a big plus both do represent the character pretty faithfully, and Bome's version is still the one better available, as well as being the more affordable, option.
Bome's Noriko stands in a comparatively conservative upright pose than what you usually tend to see many other sculptors do, but this certainly doesn't detract from the figure itself. Her facial expression is also a lot more determined and showing a sense of seriousness with nary a smile on her lips (the very opposite of her very enthusiastic Kotobukiya counterpart), but again her facial features are quite faithful to her animated model. Perhaps only her nose is slightly on the level of being a bit too slight, but then again the original is not the easiest to replicate in sculpted form, so this is not a major criticism (the Kotobukiya does this perhaps a bit better, but oh well). As is only appropriate for Noriko, she is dressed in the best uniform that has ever been designed for space travel in the history of anime: a red leotard with a white streak running down it, and a slight gym top to finish the look. Okay, those yellow socks and somewhat silly looking slipper shoes are a bit funny, but the outfit is clearly the best you can have when travelling through space-and-time and look really nice while doing it. The space program indeed has a lot to learn. And of course Noriko is also wearing her signature bandanna, though it is quite a bit longer than it should be... but then again the Kotobukiya Noriko's bandanna is just the same, so it most likely is just for added show - and in Bome's figure works for this intended purpose well due to the general understated aesthetic of the figure itself.
Note about Noriko's pose, it seems almost as if she's holding onto a couple of invisible handlebars seeing how her hands are positioned in a whooping position, though it doesn't really reflect the controls of a GunBuster, so maybe she is either trying to engage in a boxing match or is preparing for a genki power jump to show how great she is... you know, like she does in any of those promotional pictures that you can find of her. This also goes together in that her right leg is somewhat bent upward as if trying to gather strength on her left leg for said jump, and her breasts certainly are agreeing to this action as they are clearly in a position to jiggle about a bit in that famous GAINAX bounce effect that the studio is well known for creating - though unfortunately the hard PVC plastic makes the actual physical action a bit impossible sadly. And one should not forget about one last important detail in Noriko: her butt, which is simply the cutest thing ever. I mean, really, her derriere is so cute that you could get diabetes from it. It's that freakin' sweet! That, combined with her somewhat 80s puffy hairdo that is somewhat tied back from one side by the bandanna, and all you can say is "niiiice." The figure is then seated on top of a black, circular stand that has an off-shoot protrusion with the series name stamped on it for a clean and simple layout - even if Kotobukiya's fancier stand also has a tip of a GunBuster thrown into it (though depending on how you look at it, the fact that it attaches itself to Noriko's shin instead of Bome's having the bottom of her shoe keeping her upright can be seen either as a plus or a detraction).
Paintwork is good and well-applied, though it isn't perhaps as stunning as it could be. Which is not to say that it's bad by any means, and for what is essentially a budget figure, is just fine in both consistency of application as well as faithfulness in colour. And for me it's enough that it is consistent and doesn't feature any major defects that counts in the end. Build quality is also good and sturdy with little worry that the figure will over time start to lean. As usually is the case there is a very visible seamline running across the top of her hair, and this is perhaps a bit too pronounced here for comfort, but this is again in the end a relatively small criticism. One would probably wish that her facial expression was a bit more enthusiastic alike to Kotobukiya's version, but I don't really mind my Noriko being just focused on her job and being more serious than very genki. And at only palttiarallaa £10 to own Noriko, I don't think there's a lot of reason to complain too much anyway. So Bome's Takaya Noriko is a faithfully reproduced, no frills figure of one great gal that would make any Noriko/GunBuster fan pretty happy. She's sized at around 1/7 scale, though this is just my estimate as there is no scale printed anywhere on the box, but due to her pose she doesn't take a lot of room when displayed. Now, just remember to be confident and always aim for the top! Noriko believes in you! YATTA!
© berlioz, 2010
This statue or display figure here is made by Japanese sculpture creator Bome who is known for scuplting female characters from japanese anime. The figure here is from the six episode Original Video Animation (OVA) GunBuster
The sculpture is well designed and very accurate to her appearence in GunBuster.
For the sculpture to be in the pose as seen in the photo is very simple there is a slot in on the sole of her left foot which is placed on a raised piece plastic of the stand.
If you are a fan of Gunbuster then i cant recemend this statue enough. Its well detailed and very affordable. If you are not a fan of the anime and just want a nice sculpture to place on a computer desk then again this is quite nice.
Also if you plan on starting a collection of these sculptures Bome has made 26 in the Mon-Siuer Boome series. I normally get at least one sculpture whenever i go to conventions