Saber has been in the news quite a bit recently, so with a bit of a respite before the impending flood of figure releases at the end of this month, now is as good a time as any to go way back in history and take a look at one of the earliest Saber figures. This particular Saber is from Clayz and is sculpted in a mighty 1/6 scale. If I remember correctly, I picked this figure up in early 2006, and even then it was rather hard to find.
Fate/stay night has had a peculiarly enduring presence in the anime merchandise industry over the years. Equally peculiar is the selection of Saber figures; in my view, her most iconic outfits are her blue dress and her platemail body armor, but there aren’t that many figures that depict her in that way. She has at least three figures of her in a white bikini, several of her in a maid outfit, one of her in a rather mannish (but undeniably sharp!) suit, and quite a few more of her in various examples of casual wear. However, when it comes to that blue dress, the main ones that come to mind are Gift’s, Enterbrain’s, the famously rare Good Smile Company figure, and this figure here.
Clayz is a bit of an anomaly in the figure world. I’m not really sure who they are, but many of their figures seem to come from T’s System, so I assume that they have some sort of relationship with him.
Saber’s sculpt is solid, with her wide-set stance, the subtle leftward tilt of her body and her cocked head conferring an air of nonchalance. The paint is not quite so good; the paint on her hair is actually fairly flat (despite what you might see in these photos; I probably should’ve used less harsh lighting. I like a strong contrast between light and shadows, but I don’t think it works so well for Saber). I guess the quality was decent back in 2005, but it doesn’t hold up to current standards.
Oh, and if anyone’s curious, that big light spot on the left side of her hair isn’t a highlight or reflection; it’s a big chunk of paint that got chipped off her head. I used to display her by a window and on one gusty day, my box fan fell from the window sill and crashed into Saber, toppling her to the floor. The left side of her head was damaged but her ahoge is obviously made of sterner stuff, as it amazingly survived unscathed.
One oddity of her paintjob is evident in her eyes. I’m not an artist but I know that the pupils are supposed to be centered in the iris. However, Saber’s pupils appear to be positioned leftwards and towards her eyelids, which gives her eyes a disturbing appearance if you stare at them.
Her base is as boring as can be; it’s a flat disc of black plastic. She doesn’t fit very well on it, which is sort of annoying. Also annoying is her sword, which attaches to her hand via two small pegs and comes loose fairly easily.
I’m not a big huge fan of Saber, but this is an alright figure. It was awesome at its release, but hasn’t really stood up to the test of time. Still, it remains distinctive, with few 1/6 scale Sabers and figures of her in her blue dress available, even after all these years.