E2046: Saber Lily (black version)

Wow, two E2046 figure reviews back to back – who would’ve thought?!

I can’t say I’m a huge E2046 fan, but they do pretty good work to release some completed garage kit figures. While I have some experience with painting miniatures (Warhammer collection), there’s no way I’ll ever be able to do a good enough job with painting figures. So I think I’ll let the pros handlle it – I know some in the community shun and boycott such companies but I don’t really care. If there’s a figure I want, I’m gonna get it.

This version of E2046′s Saber Lily is based on the T’s System kit, which I think E2046 did a pretty good job with the mould. While the original Saber Lily is in white with silver armor, this “special” edition from E2046 comes in black with onyx armor. Woo, woo, woo and a red sword like Darth Vader’s light saber! Wooosh, wooooooosh, craaaaackle, crrraaaaackle!

I hadn’t planned on getting this Saber since I already have the Distant Avalon version, but when I saw the black colour scheme I was rempted. Really tempted. And guess what? I fell into temptation again and purchased her – curse my feeble willpower! There’s Saber Alter, but the colour scheme is still different compared to this one. I really like the black, gray and yellow combination. The red transparent sword is a nice touch that offsets the black. When I purchased this from E2046, she was the last one in stock – lucky me!

I’m not too familiar with T’s System sculpts, but this Saber looks to be fairly well sculpted. She’s captured in mid action, although I’m a little bit confused as what she’s doing. Either dodging something or side stepping or running, not too sure. She looks a little different depending on the angle – the way her skirt flies upwards sort of adds to the confusion. It’s not a bad design, but I think I prefer Saber Lily’s pose from Distant Avalon more.

I really like the paint work on Saber Lily’s armor, it has a glistening onyx feel to it. A closer look at her armor, you can see metallic specks – kind of like a nice layer of dry brushing then a gloss coat. There are also subtle shading around the edges of her armor, so it’s not just a flat out blob of paint covering her armored parts. The paint on her sword is a little bit too thick though, looks like it’s covering up some finer details. The sword sits very loosely in her hand, so you have to add a little bit of glue to help secure it from sliding out.

One thing I like about this sculpt is the way the skirt appears to be in motion, the way it is flying upwards add a bit of sex appeal to the figure. From the rear, a little lower angle reviews Saber Lily’s leg armor with black stockings. Not so much the underpands unless you go much lower, which I prefer as it leaves more to the imagination.

Take note that the skirt is rather large and will take up some space – it is also quite hefty and has some decent weight to it. That said, you’ll need to keep Saber pegged down into the display stand, otherwise she’ll be tipping over all the time. The Gathering display stand from E2046 does a pretty good job securing the figure, no wobbling what so ever. The black and yellow colour scheme also flows well with the rest of the figure, but design wise, it’s nothing to write home about.

The scabbard, like the sword, is a little bit crude in terms of paint work. It’s not bad per se, but when you compare it to the rest of the figure the quality seems a little off. The paint appears thick, was E2046 re-using extra stock of the original release (white version) and just painting over it? The scabbard is a solid piece, so you can’t sheath the sword – not that I can anyway as I glued the sword to Saber Lily’s hand already (lol). Interestingly, this Saber Lily is holding the sword with her left hand, as opposed to her right like the other Saber figures I’ve seen.

The little strand of hair on Saber Lily’s head comes as a loose part and required to be glued in as well. On E2046′s site and pictures, the hair is pointing forward – but in all other figures and art references that I’ve seen, this strand of hair is pointing backwards. I don’t know if this was a mistake on E2046′s part or that this was done on purpose – their way of saying “bootleg”! Well, I’m not sure what kind of licensing agreements they had to release this figure as a completed model, so I can’t comment much on it. If anyone knows, feel free to leave a comment! I opted for mounting this piece of hair flowing towards the back for two reasons:

1) It made more sense and followed the original character design
2) It made more sense given her pose, she’s moving towards the right, so obviously her hair should be flowing towards left. If you look at her pony tail, it’s flowing to her left as well.

One of the features that surprised me when I got this figure was that she came with a magnetic cast-off system. I didn’t realize that, or didn’t notice E2046′s marketing notes when I purchased her. All I saw was “black version” and “1 remaining in stock” and I bought it. The breast plate portion of the armor attaches to Saber’s breasts via magnets and the back plate wraps around Saber’s body securely. The breast plate sits just inside the front part of the back plate (so it’s like the back plate is hugging the breast plate) – this helps secure breast plate in place on top of the magnets. The fitment is perfect, which really surprised me.

The dress shirt is reminiscent of the Golden Caliburn from GSC, except this is black. So with this version, you can have the best of both worlds and not have to dish out more hard earned cash for an exclusive. Man I really hate exclusive / limited release items!

The skirt is a cast off as well, you separate Saber by the waist and take off her skirt. While you can display her as a cast-off, it’s not advisable due to the way her sculpt is designed. Her hips are actually wider than her waist, this is to accommodate the skirt so it locks into place and sits securely on Saber’s body. I guess from a distance it’s not so bad, as long as you don’t turn her around. There’s a huge gap where her lower back should be, once again, this was done to facilitate securing her skirt in place. I don’t see why anyone would want to display Saber without the skirt though, it’s one of the main attractions to her design.

There are some simplistic design on Saber’s panties, nothing to write home about – but at the very least it’s a different colour other than white. Saber suffers the same flat rear end as with most anime figures, so just keep her skirt on, mmmkay?! Saber’s a classy lady… ;-)

I was more critical with E2046′s attempt at the wedding dress Tamaki, but it seems like E2046 fared much better with this Saber. Although you don’t really get more out of the original white version, the price is much more reasonable compared to Tamaki’s. The magnetic breast plate is a great addition to this figure and I commend E2046 for adding that in (I’m not sure if the T’s System kit have this as well?). The black colour scheme is also a plus; IMO much more desirable than the vanilla white and silver Sabers that are saturating the market. If anyone’s in the market for a “different” Saber, this one should definitely be considered.