Thursday, June 28, 2012

D. L. Action in Action

The doldrums between the winter and summer Comic Markets are a great time to troll the depths of Mandarake in hope of coming across some doujinshi gems and catching up on previously overlooked books and authors.  There'll be nothing new from S-Class authors Ishikei or Tony Taka until the August festival, one would expect, so it's a perfect time to divert some pocket change in other directions. 

There are several smaller doujinshi events held between the Comikets, and there's at least one top-notch author who manages to crank out works between the two big shows to keep me on the hunt. 

Sunshine Creation 56 was held last weekend, and books from the event have started to appear on Akiba Blog and Akiba Daisuki.  I like looking at the releases that come from these minor shows to get an idea of what anime have captured the attention of ero doujin artists and the otaku hivemind beyond the usual stalwarts like iDOLM@STER, Love Plus, and NanohaHyouka, Haiyore! Nyaruko-san, and Accel World appear to lead the way from this season's shows, and Accel World in particular has caught the attention of my favorite of the doujinshi circles that participate in the exhibitions between Comikets, Digital Lover.

Listen to me girls, I'm Yuka Nakajima, your creator!  Thanks to for the image
You'll recognize Digital Lover artist Yuka Nakajima's art from the novel series, recent anime adaptation, and Comic 1☆6 darling, Papa no Iu koto wo Kikinasai!, popularly known as PapaKiki.  I feel that Nakajima's artwork is remarkably cute and has a compelling softness to it--a tablespoon of kawaii for every teaspoon of ero--and those adorable character designs look spectacular unclothed in doujinshi.  One can almost immediately pick out a Nakajima character design by the face--the proportion, shape, and placement of the eyes and mouth, and the size of the eyes and mouth being almost the same somehow stand out from the crowd.  

Holo from Spice & Wolf in D.L. Action 43
Kobato Hasegawa from Haganai in D.L. Action 64
Mikoto Misaka from A Certain Scientific Railgun in D.L. Action 51
Sena Kashiwazaki from Haganai in D.L. Action 62
Nakajima's doujinshi tend to contain either straight vanilla sex or masturbation.  There's very seldom anything deviant or fetishistic or orgiastic or gonzo about it, and the bodily fluids are kept to a somewhat realistic volume, and there is absolutely nothing wrong with this.  The scenarios tend to be carnivalesque, loving and kind couplings fraught with the kinds of anxieties that one would expect from a normally tempered teenage couple, and are just as appealing emotionally as they are aesthetically.  Nakajima does tend to go to the well frequently for certain facial expressions, especially when it comes to insertion and to female orgasm, but when these expressions are so very carnal and grand and so profoundly sexual, I for one will not complain about repetition.  Read enough of Nakajima's doujin, and you'll never look at a strand of saliva from the upper to the lower lip the same way again.

Kuroyukihime as Black Lotus from Accel World in D.L. Action 67

Thanks to for the image.
Digital Lover has an incredibly high work rate for such a huge talent, and tends to find a pairing and stick with it--after Comic Market 81 in December, the circle produced  for Sunshine Creation 54 in January its eighth--EIGHTH--Kuroneko x Kyosuke pairing parody doujinshi of OreImo...

Thanks to for the image.
Then for Comic 1☆6, the Black Cat gave way to the Black Snow Princess from Accel World in a very steamy solo scene...

Thanks to for the image.
And now, for Sunshine Creation 56, Digital Lover has produced a pair of books.  First, Kuroyukihime's avatar Black Lotus takes the cover once more for D.L. Action 68, but preview pages on Toranoana (link NSFW) show other ladies of the Accel World universe coupling with male lead Haruyuki Arita...
Thanks to for the image.
In addition to the 68 volumes of parody doujinshi they've created, Digital Lover also produces an original doujinshi series, Costume Paradise, which saw its 31st iteration released at SC56...
When I read a Tony Taka doujinshi, I know I'm in for multiple pages of gorgeous standalone art and a very nicely illustrated short story.  When I read a NiseMIDIDoronokai doujinshi, I know I'm in for a lot of completely over-the-top, exceptionally high-res scenes.  When I read a Digital Lover doujin, I know I'm in for a well-crafted book that appeals to the heart as well as the nethers, and will treat its characters with respect, and the fact that I won't have to wait for half a year for another new release from a truly top-flight artist is extremely satisfying and exciting as a collector.  

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

The Damsel in Distress Arrives

Exactly eleven months ago, this fine young lady made her first appearance on  Today, the fine chocolate-clad craftsman from UPS dropped this box off at my door.  Unboxing GO GO GO GO GO!

Aaaaaand it's a pretty big one...

Not only does Toylet offer Native's figures for the cheapest prices in the US, but they also pack their shipments with all the TLC one could possibly hope for.

Inside the large box, a smaller, denser, very well-sealed one, with Japanese printing.  I wonder if other figures are shipped from the manufacturer in their own individual boxes?  I've never ever had a problem with a Native figure's box sporting the slightest scratch.

Inside the smaller box...

A very satisfying matroyshka if I may say so myself.  Native takes the time to make their packaging an event unto itself--from the wine bottle container that Nozomi Watase came in, to Chie's tissue box, to Trunk Girl'  True to form, Princess Mordina arrives in a very thick, sturdy, heavy-gauge cardboard hat box, suitably fit for a crown.

OMG TRINKETS!  Mordina comes very securely sealed in her mold, and each of the optional accessories has its own compartment.  Princess or bunny girl?

Native trains us in how to dissemble the figure by layering plastic sheeting between her separation points, and we have quite a few to contend with here.  Fortunately, she also comes with a large instruction sheet for guidance. 

Native figures always include a postcard featuring the original artwork on which the piece is based; especially handy for SEVERE EXAMINATION AND REVIEW.

After some jiggering and a little more force than I'm usually comfortable using on figures, I finally have the young damsel apart and ready to be composed.  I usually stick with emulating the original artwork, so we'll be going princess-mode for display.

Crown, neck shackle, ankle shackles, and discarded glove can be swapped for bunny ears and a tail if so desired.  I would have never guessed the figure's shoes come off without the included--credit to Native for an exceptionally tight seam.

I'm a cheater at jigsaw puzzles, too.  Let's get building!  Mordina comes back together with relative ease; I found getting her head back on her shoulders to be the most challenging but it didn't require any force or manipulation.  I love love love the magnet embedded in her head to keep her crown in place, and there's another one in the small of her back to keep the bunny tail in place if desired.  The shackles and ball weights will stick as well, which can be used for hilarity if so desired.

Drumroll please....




...and here she is.  I'll do a proper figure review soon.  For now, let's just enjoy.