April 7, 2011
 Posted by Luth
22

Review: Hyakka Ryoran Samurai Girls Hattori Hanzo by Alter

Hattori Hanzo
Today’s review is again, a bit of an oldie, but one of my favorites: Hattori Hanzo from the Hyakka Ryoran Samurai Girls franchise. There were 2 versions of this figure released: a Hobby Japan exclusive and the version I have here, the standard release. The only difference between the two versions is that the exclusive includes an extra cool twin-sword weapon.

Hanzos illustrationThis is our second Hyakka Ryoran Samurai Girls figure, you can see our other review of Sen here. Since that review, there has been an anime series released and the franchise is still going strong with figure releases by several companies. However, the one that started it all was the Hobby Japan and Alter collaboration, which in my opinion is the best figure line. This particular figure was the 3rd one in the line and was originally released in April 2010, which was unfortunately a month after we had started collecting so when I finally noticed Hanzo, it was pretty hard to obtain her. I won’t go into the details but there were several unsuccessful attempts to purchase her until Zai finally managed to grab one for me for Christmas.
As for the character herself in the anime, shes actually pretty annoying. She’s pretty much Sen’s pet and ‘lover’, gets jealous, pretty much gets beat up a lot, and whines a lot. But I was a fan of the figure before the anime even aired so every time Hanzo got some cool bits where she got to throw her shuriken or her dress blades I’d be all YEAH, GO HANZO! I mean c’mon, dress blades! Plus, she’s one of those fetish mishmashes that appeal to me: maid, glasses, ninja, and big weapons. And did I mention that I loved her dress blades?

Hanzo's front viewAbove Shot of Hanzo

One thing about this figure is that its a massive panty shot. The backwards angle Hanzo is at and with her dress floating up as shes ready to throw that giant shuriken, at eye level its a big eyeful of panty. Which is cool except you miss out on all the other awesomeness. The shots above were shot at an upwards angle as you can see. We got around this issue by displaying her on a lower shelf in our display case and it works well.

Back shot 2 of Hattori HanzoBack shot 2 of Hattori Hanzo

As you can see, Hanzo’s back is pretty awesome too. She has a very dynamic pose with nice wrinkles on her outfit. The paint is the usual excellent Alter quality with slight shading on both her outfit and skin. On her shuriken I thought the shading was a little odd but its still much much better than a flat metallic color so I won’t complain. It is removable from her hand although as I’m checking it now, it looks like a bit of paint has rubbed off onto her hand so unless you have the limited edition and swap out the shuriken for the swords, better leave it in. Love the ropes on her arms and in her hair scroll thing and like some of Sen’s ropes, these are all hard plastic and well done I might add. You can get a good look at her dress blades here and this was the big selling point for me. They’re really well done. How well done?

Dress Blades closeup

You can see slight imperfections in the cut of the blades but cmon, thats pretty freaking amazing. She has three layers of blades that go all around her dress, making it some kind of demented chainsaw thing. The blades themselves are made of ABS I think, they’re definitely light and stiff but not too fragile. I can imagine producing this figure must have been a nightmare but wow, its definitely paid off in my eyes. In the anime she was able to throw all her blades at an enemy by spinning but unfortunately (or fortunately?) these ones aren’t removable.

Showing off Hanzo's amazing hair

Here you can see how great Alter is at doing hair. Its broken up into many strands, gives a real feeling of motion, and most importantly, not blobby like so many other figures that attempt this. It actually looks like hair and not tentacles.

Back Shot 3A shot at Hanzo's panties

Here’s some of the obligatory panty shots and on a figure like this, its hard to not get shots of her panties. They’re actually very plain, the maroon is a nice color but lets face it, a ninja would probably wear practical panties like these. That enlarged bulge does bother me sometimes, I keep thinking: please don’t be a trap. The ninja stocking on one leg and the garter on the other is a pretty cool fashion choice, that would be missed if Hanzo was in a standing pose. Her shoes though, whoahhh. They’re like stiletto getas. You would need ninja reflexes to even stand, but I suppose Hanzo is an elite ninja. You can’t see it well in these pictures but if you look at the ones above, the shoes are half falling off, her heels aren’t touching the shoes. A very nice touch Alter.
Her stand is a simple white disk with the same design as the other Samurai Girls figures, pretty boring. It holds a single metal stick that plugs into a hole underneath her dress and that hold up the entire figure. Time will tell if something will happen but the hole is fairly deep so here’s hoping. The figure was originally supposed to have 2 metal stands and one was supposed to plug into her leg but after fan outcry, Alter decided to change it to its current iteration.

Hattori Hanzo's face

Love the expression on Hanzo, normally I’m iffy about open-mouth expressions because they’re often done badly but Alter did well here. The glasses were beautifully done and I love the way Alter’s done the Hyakka Ryoran eyes. Some people don’t like her large eyebrows but I think they help her look more angry. Again, hair is done well here with lots of strands and actually coming to sharp points instead of blobs.

Box Shot 1Box shot 2

Hanzo’s box is the same design as the other Samurai Girls’ figures but its a lot bigger, maybe close to twice as large as Senhime’s box. With all those dress blades splayed out and the crazy hair, its pretty understandable. Hanzo retails at 8800 yen and since Zai got it for me for Christmas, I’m not sure how much she got it for. Hanzo is no longer available in the major Japanese retailers, if you’re looking for her, best to look in US stores (I think that’s where Zai found her) or in the secondhand market. Be prepared for a massive shipping bill as well though. I definitely highly recommend her but if you’re looking for another opinion, why not check out Fabienne’s review?

22 comments on “Review: Hyakka Ryoran Samurai Girls Hattori Hanzo by Alter”

  1. tabetaiii Reply

    lovely shots! especially the last one;) Figure looks great, although I’m no fan of Alter. The blades on her look so awesome, alter has certainly done a good job! It reminds me of what they did with Mugi’s keyboard. I know find alter comparable with GSC. Back then Alter were kinda lacking in quality, in my opinion. But now it seems they have drastically improved their line of figures. Overall, a nice review!

    I found the hyakka ryouran samurai girls show pretty disappointing, felt more like fan service with blotches and a poor storyline. Main char annoyed me a lot !
    tabetaiii recently posted..Ar tonelico Qoga- Knell of Ar Ciel Limited Edition Set – NIS America

    • Luth Reply

      Thanks! xD
      I remember seeing someone’s review on Mugi’s keyboard, that was amazing work as well. I wish someone would go take shots of Alter’s production line the same way that Mikatan did with GSC in China.
      Haha, it took some effort for the two of us to slog through that series as well, it was almost excessively fanservice-ey, lots of cliche, and yeah, both Jubei and Muneakira (or as Zai likes to call him, ‘generic faggot’) were pretty annoying. Except when Jubei transformed, that was pretty awesome. It helped that we loved the character designs a lot and the art was pretty good.

      • Zai Reply

        Thanks for making me sound like a homophobe, lol.

    • Fabienne Reply

      @tabetaiii Implying that GSC is better than Alter,eh? I guess I´ll give you a good talking to and straighten this out ^o^
      No,no Im just kidding everybody has his own favorites and that should be accepted and respected :)
      Fabienne recently posted..New Preorders part 6

      • Ashlotte Reply

        That was my thought Fab! Alter’s Quality is second maybe only to Max Factory…Comparing to GSC is kinda insulting considering the things they’ve done recently, but as you say I guess everyone has their favorites… O.o
        Ashlotte recently posted..Review- 1-8 Ranka Lee NA ver

      • Luth Reply

        In my opinion GSC takes more risks with dynamic figures and such but sometimes fall flat on their face. When they do make a hit, they do it well. But yeah, Max Factory is still my fav (VN02 for the win!). I’d really like to see what an Alpha x Omega figure is like though and compare it with pure Alter figures, they need to come out with something that I’m interested in!

        • Ashlotte Reply

          AxO is OK, but not as good as you’d expect from a collab between two great companies…The quality isn’t really as good as Alter and the body sculpts aren’t really on-par with Mega Houses best.

          Their still better then Koto and all the other mid-tier companies though! Guess I’d call them lower top-tier?
          Ashlotte recently posted..Review- 1-8 Ranka Lee NA ver

        • Fabienne Reply

          I have two figures from them Alice and Golden Darkness.
          The best figure from A x O is probably Queens Gate Alice, most pictures don’t really do her justice, but she looks just great in person, someday I should exchange some pics from my old review with better ones, the background is badly chosen :) Golden Darkness is also a nice looking figure, but she has not such fine details as Alice has. Klan Klang is another nice looking figure from A x O, but I don’t have her in my collection.
          Fabienne recently posted..New Preorders part 6

  2. duqs Reply

    Your shots give justice to the series!

    i really can’t say much about the figure aside from the intricate (and the repetitive) details found on her skirt. I do have to say that her character design was a waste by making her into a fumbling ninja maid for a strong princess XD
    duqs recently posted..Busy Week – Ozinefest

    • Luth Reply

      Thanks! Zai helped a lot, I ended up putting in a lot more work into the photos than I usually do thanks to her critique.
      It did sadden me a little that her character ended up being so annoying but she did get a few parts where she was badass and that made it worth it. I wasn’t expecting too much from the anime though so it didn’t dampen my appreciation for the figure at all.

  3. Fabienne Reply

    Nice review! I like purple hair, maid outfits and glasses and so she was the kind of figure I wanted to have in my collection. In the first few eps of the anime I was shocked by her loser personality. I thought “hey I bought your figure, so start getting cool” XD Im glad that she became more likeable for me in the second half. The figure itself is just great, face expression, the hair, the vey creative outfit and the pose as well. The quality of the paintjob and the sculpting is great as to expected from an Alter figure, but it should be mentioned, a very cool and pretty figure.

    The only point I don’t like is the angle of her pose, she’s tilted backwards and that makes it unfitting for displaying her on high places. In the end I was so mad about it that I made a new base for her ( its nothing great, but I should post this someday, I guess ^^) , the pose looks a bit less dynamic now, but she is more suitable for being displayed on different places.

    thx for linking :)
    Fabienne recently posted..New Preorders part 6

    • Luth Reply

      HAHAHA, your comment is entertaining xD. At least they didn’t release a Kantesugu figure before the show came out, that would have been really depressing. I remember seeing your review and going “ahh awesome, want so BAD, but i’ll never have her :(“. And now she’s sitting on my desk and better than I had hoped for.
      Yes, you need to post pics of your new stand, I’ve been very keen to see how you did it. We got around it by putting her on a lower shelf which was convenient since we were having a hard time figuring out what figures would go down there.

      • Fabienne Reply

        haha thx, it was a strange feeling as I saw Hattori licking Senhimes thighs, I was like “show at least some selfrespect.” Kantesugu was so annoying that I actually liked her, she’s hilarious, epecially in the beach episode XD
        ah I see, so never give up^^ glad you found a good shelf place for her.
        Fabienne recently posted..New Preorders part 6

        • Ashlotte Reply

          Yea Naoe was about the only good thing for me in the show. I was a little disappointed that she was so goofy at first, but I found the charm in her personality.

          “MY COTTAGE!!!” Indeed haha….
          Ashlotte recently posted..Review- 1-8 Ranka Lee NA ver

  4. Ashlotte Reply

    I think the anime ruined every character sadly…I was so hopeful after the really badass way the show first started, but it sure was all downhill from there. T_T

    Oh well she’s still an impressive piece of work as you said and no matter how much they tank her personality you can’t deny she has an awesome character design! :p
    Ashlotte recently posted..Review- 1-8 Ranka Lee NA ver

    • Luth Reply

      Well, it was from the same people who made the Queen’s Blade anime and that was so bad I could barely get through 1 episode. I was expecting Jubei to be an airhead after reading some of the synopsis and promos but her master samurai form was pretty badass and I found myself liking Jubei more after the show because of her. Too bad no one makes a gold-eyed version of Jubei or even better, a heterochromia version.

  5. Chag Reply

    I’d like to see someone try to flip her skirt!

    I’m pretty sure Hanzo takes the prize for the lest practical footwear award. I remember seeing her run around in those things in the anime, and I couldn’t help but to be bewildered. Maybe they are loaded with springs? That way it would be like running on a pair of mini-pogo sticks. Those maid-ninjas come up with the darnest things.

    Everyone rags on the anime, but I don’t really see the big deal. Granted, I’m only halfway through the series and am stilling waiting for those BDs, but with a premise that is so focused on pandering to as many fetishes as possible, is it really possible to squeeze in a plot in there? I went into it with zero expectations, and I have to say that if anything, Hyakka Ryouran has exceeded my expectations — it LOOKS fantastic, at least! And for a bunch of 30-minute figure/magazine commercials, I can’t really ask for much more than that.
    Chag recently posted..Review- 1-8 Ranka Lee NA ver

    • Luth Reply

      Oooh, that sounds like fun, pogo sandals. From a design choice, its actually kinda cool, very much the modern x samurai blend they were going for.
      Haha, thats true, I suppose it basically was a giant commercial. I wish they had thrown in more badass scenes like in the very beginning though. But as it is, I still want to get more Samurai Girls figures so I guess it worked?

  6. Miette-chan Reply

    I really like this line of figures, not to thrill about the exclusiveness of some of them though. Id I hadn’t been pressed for funds I would have picked up a few.

    I’m amazed, I had looked Hanzo before but I can’t believe I never noticed any of the amazing details she has. I mean, how in the world did I miss the blades in her dress? Although I must say she probably is the one I like the least of of the line. I do wonder why since she has many of the design elements I tend to like.
    Miette-chan recently posted..Today is April 1st isn’t

    • Luth Reply

      For me it helps that all the exclusive ones are the ones I’m least interested in. I really hope that D’Artagnan isn’t exclusive though, she’d probably be my favorite of the upcoming ones as long as they don’t mess her up.
      Aww, did the anime ruin her character for you perhaps?

  7. Alter Yagyu Jubei Review | Plastic Parfait Reply

    [...] then Alter has come out with 5 other of the girls, we’ve got Hattori Hanzo and Senhime here. Also, other figure manufacturers have made different figures of the girls in [...]

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