It seems like manufacturers have long ago run out of ideas when it comes to Evangelion figures. The most creative ones I see are probably Sega’s prize figures. Almost all the other Evangelion scale figures seem to feature either Asuka or Rei in a plug suit. Thankfully an exception to the rule comes along once in a while, but this is not one of those times.
Here we have Asuka, in her Evangelion 2.0 test plug suit, as rendered by Alter. She was released a while ago, but I got this one on sale from Hobby Link Japan. If you’re a collector and want to control your addiction, avoid HLJ sales at all costs. This is my sixth Alter figure, and I must say they’ve lived up to their reputation yet again.
While the subject may be… common (not exactly dull), Alter has created just about as good of a figure as it’s possible to create. The sculpt is magnificent; at 1/8 scale it still carries more detail than most of my larger figures. Whereas most plug suit sculpts come out looking like wetsuits, Alter’s interpretation looks more like a thin layer of latex. The face looks true to Yoshiyuki Sadamoto’s design, and even her pose and fingers have a Sadamoto-esque quality to them.
Asuka sits atop a throne of rubble and girders, supported by a single metal rod that joins her to the base. The base is just a translucent orange disk with the Evangelion 2.0 logo on there, not that you’ll be looking at it much. The paint job is clean, pretty much flawless. I especially like the shading that went into the plug suit. Plug suits aren’t the most exciting types of clothing, but at least the paint job here gives it depth. The only issue is the torso section, which is supposed to be translucent. Obviously it would be really hard to make an actual translucent piece, but the paint effect isn’t terribly convincing. It’s finished with a very glossy varnish, which looks great.
Then we get to Asuka’s face, which is way too happy and calm. Evangelion 2.0 is not about calm or happy things, and Asuka is certainly not a calm or happy character. I guess the decision to go with this expression comes down to marketability. Still, I wish Alter stuck with representing the character. Asuka is sitting on some destroyed building, she should look angry, or sad, or at the very least worried. And if you’ve seen Evangelion 2.0, you’ll know that her test suit is the prelude to utter devastation.
Like all the Eva pilot plug suit figures out there, this one is slightly lacking in personality. But looked at in a vacuum, it holds up very well. Of course the craftsmanship is top notch, but Asuka is also a very pleasant character to look at. If I had to make a company continue to produce cliched plug suit figures, I would choose Alter.