Good Smile Company: Canaan

It was awhile back when I saw the preview for the Canaan figure. At first it didn’t really grab at me and since I didn’t know who she was nor am familiar with the series, I didn’t bother looking into it further. There was also the fact that she’s suppose to match up with Alphard, which didn’t impress me as a figure, but I knew I had to get Alphard just to complete the set. I know, it’s a disorder of mine, but I just can’t have an incomplete collection! Eventually I gave in after looking at more of the promo photos and the display at WF. I really like dynamically posed figures, particularly girls with guns, so I placed my pre-order for Canaan (and reluctantly Alphard) with high expectations.

The figure was postponed for a few months, and fans awaited eagerly for Canaan’s release. I’m sure it’s safe to say that many fans were expecting a great quality figure, along the lines of Saber Lily (Distant Avalon), and truth be told I wasn’t expecting anything less of GSC as I believe them to be one of the better figure manufacturers out there. But as release date came, Hobby Search posted some rather concerning photos of a production Canaan. The photos showed horrible finishes, particularly the hair, with a lot of molding bits left unsmoothed. The paint work also seemed bland compared to the prototype, and shading seemed almost non-existent. There was quite an uproar within the community and bitter memories of the World is Mine Hatsune Miku started to surface. The quality of Canaan from the HobbySearch photos made her look as if she was a bootleg, no where close to the Canaan we saw in the promo photos.

I, for one, was nervous about the figure as well, as she wasn’t exactly cheap to begin with and I also have Alphard on order! Eventually some people started posting up their photos of Canaan, and we all got to let out a sigh of relief that the figure isn’t as bad as seen in the HobbySearch photos. There are still quality control issues, however, but I think for the most part it’s acceptable. There are still reports of scratch marks on the surface of some figures, incorrect paint applications and unclean surfaces prior to paint, but at least the Canaan I received didn’t suffer from these issues. Sure, my Canaan isn’t perfect, but at least it’s not bad! And you know what? The more I look at her, the more I like her.

I’m guessing it’s her pose that has captured me, her jumping through the air, cape flying off and shooting her Beretta Px4 (a la Chow Yun Fat in a John Woo film). I’ve said this many times, and I never get tired of it, but I love dynamic figures such as Canaan, especially (girls) with guns. Speaking of guns, one of the quality concerns of this figure is the positioning of her pistol. There were concerns that her pistol isn’t aimed properly on the production model and that Canaan’s eyes aren’t looking at her target. The concern once again stems from the horrible Canaan seen in the Hobby Search photos – seriously, did they take a photo of a bootlegged Canaan? Anyway, I can safely say that Canaan is looking down the barrel at her target, but due to the angle of her body, and the way her hands tilting the pistol slightly, it can look “off” depending on the angle you look at her.

One of the main concerns of this figure was her hair, the Hobby Search photos showed a poorly cleaned hair with a lot of artifacts and molding bits. The paint application was also bland and coarse, with the tips of her hair dull and rounded, which was quite the opposite of the pre-production model that we all saw. I’m not sure how the figure is for the other owners, but on mine the hair is alright. The paint is still a little coarse, but at least not a lot of molding bits nor heavy seam lines. It’s definitely passable.

Canaan is a fairly simple figure, actually, there aren’t that many details on her body. The red shirt and brown pants are plain, and accessory wise Canaan only has a necklace, bracelet and an arm guard. The necklace itself lacks detail and the arm guard doesn’t have any designs. The pistol, however, does receive some attention. When I first saw the pre-production model, I thought she was using a Glock 19 due to the rail and colour scheme of the lower frame. The pics weren’t as detailed so I couldn’t see the rear of the pistol (as it looks nothing like a Glock). On my Canaan, the only obvious finishing error is a scratch at the bottom of the pistol frame; luckily it’s not a visible area.

One peeve that usually bothers me is when a finger is placed on trigger – you don’t put your finger on the trigger unless you’re going to shoot. But in this case it’s perfectly fine since Canaan is in the middle of a duel and she’s about to open up a can of whoop-ass on Alphard.

The pants is painted decently, but nothing spectacular, at the very least it’s fully painted. By that I am referring back to the Hobby Search photos again, as the photos showed a lack of paint in the creases of the pants. The zipper could’ve been painted better as well, there’s a bit of overlap between the silver and the brown.

I know so far this review has been pretty critical, even on the smaller details that I normally let slide, I’m guessing that’s due to the high expectations of this figure. But there are redeeming qualities as well. Aside from the pose, Canaan’s back is very well sculpted and painted (thank goodness)! It’s quite reminiscent of Collet and Sora – love it when figures receive detailed sculpts such as this. If only the finish quality received such attention to detail…

The shading work is pretty good though, albeit a little coarse. But you won’t notice the graininess from normal viewing distances. The painter should’ve been a bit more careful with painting lines though as there are quite a bit of overlap. The boots also have detailed soles which look really heavy duty, they look like Belleville combat boots to me (but they’re not).

One last community complaint about the finish of this figure is the base. The pre-production model had really detailed paint work where the bricks/stones were painted individually. But on the finished version, everything looks airbrushed over without care to detail. The base, actually doesn’t bother me and I think it does look pretty good (from a distance anyway).

One enigma that did puzzle me for quite a number of minutes is the little peg that holds Canaan in the air. GSC didn’t include any instructions and the pictures on the box is of the pre-production model with a different peg. The peg can be placed in any direction and doesn’t have a clear front or back, nor an up or down. Depending on how you insert the peg, Canaan may be higher or lower, forward or backward in comparison to the cape. After playing around with the possible combinations I think I found the position that seems “right”. The short side of the peg goes into the base and the top angling forward; I took a picture in case anyone is curious (or is going through the same hell I did). :-P

I tried to finish this review twoweeks ago, but kept procrastinating till now. I thought there would be more reviews of Canaan, but at the moment, I only see the photo review at Exelica Meteor and the review at PolyVinyl Crush. If there are others let me know!

Even with the amount of finishing flaws, I have to say the figure is still good. If you’re on the fence still, just get her anyway, you won’t be sorry. Her quality may not be the best, but she sure as hell take photos damn well! Canaan is a very photogenic figure, that much I can assure you! I tried to do some desert theme with smoke effects, didn’t exactly turned out the way I wanted though, but I guess not all that bad. Looking at this figure, I knew right away where I wanted to take a picture of her, the Badlands! I found it hard to stop taking pictures, even though the angles were getting redundant. Well, have a look see!