FigureFocus 316 Kaiyodo ChocoEgg Classic Shrew Mole

Yet another Kaiyodo ChocoEgg figure today, but a very different sort. A very small mammal figure, another one of those great ones that you could only find from the original Furuta ChocoEgg Animaltales set. Except, in this case, it’s a re-release–because in or around 2003 ChocoEgg produced a short series of ‘Classic’ models–twenty-four figures that had shown up in the first three series (which meant picking 24 from a choice of nearly 100). It was also pretty random, with a selection of represented clades of animals, and a decent assortment for people that missed them the first time. In this case, it is the Greater Japanese Shrew mole–a true mole that kind of looks a little shrew-like. It is number 016C in the series–the Classic figure retained their original numbers, with a “C” attached (the figures are stamped like this).

The figure is overall very well made. The seams are a little visible, but this is to be expected of a figure from the first series. The hair and body details are well-realized, and they did a decent job of capturing the feet, with them being less ‘outward’ than on a typical mole, and more flat-footed and extended as with a shrew. The face is pretty non-distinct (with the eyes very dark and almost invisible, as appropriate) with a grey face and the tip of the nose picked out in a light pink. The paws and snout are dark pink. Interestingly, this painting is very different from the original, which saw the eyes painted very clearly in a light colour, and the paws and snout yellow. Almost like the original was painted to be more shrew-like? The Classic is definitely an improvement.

This is one of those weird animal figures that I chose to get when the opportunity arose, just because small mammals were very uncommon as figures (and I was studying small fossil mammals after all). And honestly, really small mammal species are still really uncommon (adding up every non-bat, non-rabbit and non-mouse/rat figure of small mammals would probably still be less than all the tigers or lions or elephants ever made…but anyway…) Of course, I had missed out on series 1 the first time, so the Classic was a great opportunity for at least a few models like this one. Of course it’s no more readily available than the earlier ChocoEgg series now, but the chances of finding one of the reissued figures is at least a little better! And I definitely recommend these weird little animals, they definitely round out a collection!

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