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Hatsune Miku - Vocaloid - GOOD SMILE Co - Snow - REVIEW 03Hatsune Miku - Vocaloid - GOOD SMILE Co - Snow - REVIEW 03

HappyakrzHappyakrz25 dias atrásReview
This article is not suitable for people under 18.
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Hello all of you lovely people, on a beautiful autumn Sunday!
I hope that you’re enjoying October, the season for Homecoming, and the celebration of Halloween!

Back Story
Once I had a couple of figures on my desk, I spent far more of my spare time delving through the archives of the MFC figure database, and I realized that I wanted to develop a tool of my own to track the pricing fluctuations and purchasing opportunities for my own collection. Having been a software developer as part of my career, I quickly set to work and built the base of my system and began collecting data from multiple websites and online stores. I also began to create lists within MFC and was pleased to see notifications start to come through regarding advertisements for private sales of other collectors’ figures.

Purchasing figures from other collectors wasn’t necessarily my first choice to build my collection, and I was definitely wary as you never know how closely your definitions and standards will meet with others. Terms like “near mint” have a VERY wide diversity if you talk to enough people, and I didn’t want to ever get caught up in a discrepancy because of a difference between my definitions and those of others. That’s why I typically only buy factory-sealed products – at least in that case, you know that any defect in the product came straight from the source.

But I still perused the ads every morning, and I began to get more and more curious about the prospect of a private seller purchase because of the amazing prices that I was seeing. The only hesitation was in an innocent and hesitant mindset that didn’t want to "get burned" by a bad purchase. So, I read reviews of purchases, and checked out comments made from buyers and sellers alike.

It was also at this time that I learned about the massive quantity of Chinese fakes on the market. I read several articles on the topic, and the recurrent warning by the authors was to always look for the holographic sticker on the box – this usually denoting an authentic product of the manufacturer which the knockoffs tended not to reproduce. Here are images of two such stickers ...

http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_sticker_1_72.jpg
http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_sticker_2_72.jpg

So, I began to always ask about the sticker in my correspondence with the sellers – never trying to imply that they were hocking a fake – more that I just wanted to make sure that I was doing due diligence to my collection dollars. So far (15 private purchases in), every single seller has responded positively, often even sending photos of the sticker or explaining why it might not be there. I haven’t been burned by a single purchase yet (knock on wood) and hope to continue using strong communication with sellers to get the best info on each product I pursue.

In late July 2019, I found an ad by a seller who was trying to sell two Miku figures (though he had them listed separately). After a couple of rounds of private messages, he shared photos of both sealed boxes with closeups on box seals and the holographic stickers and offered me a price I couldn’t refuse. This review showcases the first of those two Mikus:

http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_display_01_72.jpg

Good Smile Company
Vocaloid - Hatsune Miku - 1/7 – Snow - ITEM #464599
Sculptor: Kawagoe Hiromitsu - ENTRY #27973
Vendor: private MFC seller ($100.00 in July of 2019)

In all honesty, I know next to nothing about Hatsune Miku. I know that she’s a fictional singer/entertainer who actually has some music available for purchase in the real world. I know that a game or two include her as the primary character. But I’ve never seen an outtake or heard a note of the music around the character. Beyond that ignorance, I seem to see her EVERYWHERE!! – and I like what I see! She’s an adorable character who definitely seems to capture the essence of the teen idol, and the variety of figures that have been created shows just how widely she’s loved by a very large audience.

As I don’t know her character, I like to believe that she’s a very sweet-hearted and kind individual, with a leaning toward being perhaps a little on the innocent and naïve side. I think she definitely has a lot of sass, but probably uses it the way a fun-loving early teen would use it. At least this is what I’m led to believe by the figures that have been created. And this figure is no different. Adventurous, daring, confident, and fun – she owns the slopes!

The Box
The box is beautiful, covered with art of both photographs and character art of Miku in the figure pose. With windows on the front, side, back, and top, you have plenty of opportunity to check out the figure while it's still safe within. Great color in the printing, and just the right amount of shelf appeal to draw the attention if you were looking at a wall of figures. I particularly like the "snowflake cutout" on the back -- a simple yet satisfying extra step to make the box unique.

http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_box_1_72.jpg
http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_box_2_72.jpg
http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_box_3_72.jpg
http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_box_4_72.jpg

The Figure
The base is actually the first thing that caught my eye as I opened the box, as it is far more a display piece that accentuates the character hugely! As a “tiered platform” the raised section of the base, including the snowflake graphics and angled plane is really beautiful. Not only does it raise the figure above the level of some of the other figures on the shelf, it acts as a fluid part of the scenery over which Miku is “skiing/snowboarding/surfing” – in fact, if you actually follow the path of the surface upon which she is standing, it ends up being her left pigtail – VERY creative work on the part of the sculptor!

http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_parts_1_72.jpg
http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_parts_2_72.jpg
http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_parts_4_72.jpg

The only thing that throws me off about the base is that the dash-line circles remind always remind me of the laces on a baseball, and I think that she’s invading the World Series! LOL

http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_parts_3_72.jpg

The really intriguing aspect of a figure this complex is that she come in a single piece – fully assembled and ready to be mounted to the base. I’m guessing that with such intricate strands of hair going in every direction and circumnavigating the body in all directions, it would have been a nightmare to include assembly instructions and not have customers breaking every other piece as she went together. In my mind, that’s a good quality control decision, as long as your blister packaging controls all interior movement beautifully – in this particular case, it appears to have been a good decision.

http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_parts_5_72.jpg
http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_parts_6_72.jpg

Mounting Miku to the base was smooth and felt very solid – just had to be quite careful about how to hold her body without inadvertently bending of her hair pieces.

http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_display_07_72.jpg

Reviewer's Notes
Overall Sculpt
Movement, movement, and more movement. And then even some more movement. It appears that this is all the sculptor had on his mind during the development of his Miku. The only things that appear to need to stay still are her feet on the “board” and her eyes on the prize – everything else is designed in a whirlwind of beautiful whites, silver, and blues. From her hair, to her scarf, to her tie, to the looped belt on her skirt … even her arms are thrown out wide to control her balance as she careens down the mountain. And the detail is simply stunning.

http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_display_02_72.jpg
http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_display_03_72.jpg
http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_display_04_72.jpg

One of the greatest feats in this figure is the ability of the sculptor to have large sections of the hair seemingly floating in mid-air, when the reality is that they are attached quite firmly to the body in very discreet positions. Half of the fun of this figure for me is trying to imagine what the initial sketches looked like, and then the face of the sculptor when he realized what he had to do to make it a reality. :)

http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_display_06_72.jpg
http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_display_08_72.jpg
http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_display_09_72.jpg
http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_display_22_72.jpg

The scarf and mittens in particular are a really cute addition, and so beautifully displayed!

http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_display_10_72.jpg
http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_display_17_72.jpg

While I'm not typically a fan of big-toed-boots, I do like how Miku is solidly stationed on the slope in her silver boots -- the right boot appears to be losing some traction!

http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_display_05_72.jpg
http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_display_12_72.jpg

The hair-tie design is really unique, as well. I love the hollow square used, seemingly floating at the curve of her scalp with pony tails launching through each. It's really only the strict geometry in the whole figure, and though subtle, it's cool.

http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_display_11_72.jpg

And still, through all of the whirl and tumble of the outside area of the figure, Miku's actual body is well-sculpted, beautiful in it's curved and hunched pose, and very feminine. Absolutely LOVE her torso to shoulder in this shot!

http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_display_16_72.jpg

Painting
In my opinion, this is one of the most beautifully painted figures I’ve seen. The color of her hair alone, and the technique used to fade from near translucent to fully opaque is masterful – and then to throw in the stark white snowflakes positioned intermittently – just brilliant.

http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_display_14_72.jpg
http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_display_18_72.jpg
http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_display_20_72.jpg
http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_display_21_72.jpg

Boots, skirt, and sleeves of silver add to the already powerful “cold” that the figure exudes, and when I look at it for any length of time, I get the feeling that the silver sections would be literally freezing cold at a single touch.

http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_display_19_72.jpg

I'm also really pleased and impressed with the placement and cleanliness of a huge number of decals all over the figure.

http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_display_13_72.jpg

Miku’s skin tone is pretty typical of her other figures – just a little more yellow under certain lights. My white LEDs usually display her beautifully and her skin holds a beautiful, soft glow.

http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_display_15_72.jpg

Overall Presentation
I can sit across the room from this figure and literally HEAR the scrape of her feet as she hurtles down the slopes. The determination in her face (eyes especially) is awesome, and I’m completely there with her as she lifts off into the wind.

She is an amazing addition to my collection, and will always hold a spotlight as her presence demands your attention!

Comparisons
The first comparison is teamed up with Tengen Toppa Gurren-Lagann - Yoko Littner - DreamTech LingerieStyle Series - 1/8 (Wave) -- ITEM #720669

Here, Yoko is almost completely the opposite of Miku -- in color, in simplicity of pose, and in the overwhelming (at least to me) warmth that seems to exude from her. I liked seeing these two next to each other because they really brought out the differences in what a figure can represent, while still retaining amazing craft for both.

http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_comp_1_72.jpg

The second comparison is with one of the more recent renditions of Ayanami Rei – Evangelion Shin Gekijouban: Q - Ayanami Rei (Flare) -- ITEM #463483

In this case, I wanted to use Rei to show Snow Miku's scale, but again, I think that the color scheme, pose, and attitude of the characters do a nice job of showing off each of their differences and individual strengths.

http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_comp_2_72.jpg

The third comparison is with one of my favorite figures of Angela Balzac – Rakuen Tsuihou: Expelled From Paradise - Angela Balzac - 1/7 (Phat Company) -- ITEM #287724

This was an impulse comparison -- just wanted to see what a figure that is being quite literally "lifted up on a pedestal" would look like when placed next to a kneeling figure on the ground. It doesn't really work for me for the display case, but I DO like their colors together!

http://www.happyakrz.com/anime/snow_miku/snow_miku_comp_3_72.jpg

Lessons Learned
The biggest (and best) lesson learned from this purchase was the trust I gained in private seller purchases, when paired with solid communication, photos provided, and a little research. As stated above, my collection has continued to grow quickly, and the majority of that has been from private sellers who were looking to downsize. Shy of three figures, every one of the purchases was still factory sealed, and I couldn't be happier with the quality and care that the original owners took in getting them to me.

As always, please feel free to leave questions or comments (including constructive criticism)! I love hearing from you all!

Until next time!
2,058 hits • 6 comentários

Pontuações10/10

Sculpting
Painting
Posing
Base
Packaging
Enjoyment

Comentários6

3pt
broken-Toybox lump of laziness
MartinTremolada (24 dias atrás) #69134306Probably a dumb question since I'm not an experienced collector, but how did you get that Rei figure? Isn't it supposed to be released next year in May?Next year is a rerelease. That figure was first released in February 2018.
24 dias atrás
1pt
Probably a dumb question since I'm not an experienced collector, but how did you get that Rei figure? Isn't it supposed to be released next year in May?
24 dias atrás
2pt
The review and photos were great! I also love the way the hair is painted on this figure too. The color scheme is also so pretty!

Miku has no canon personality and she is essentially an instrument/software for musicians to use to sing the songs they create, resulting in hundreds of thousands of songs in all kinds of different genres on the internet and a dedicated and diverse fanbase. She is definitely loved <3
24 dias atrás
4pt
Great review! Your photography is super really crisp (but its no surprise due to your history).

Hatsune Miku is one of those characters that gets flack (for just existing apparently) and she might not be everyone's cup of tea when it comes to her music but at least the majority of people appreciate her character design, the art that people draw for her, and the variety of outfits and costumes that exist for her.

This figure of course is really pretty; the only con I see about this figure is that her hair and the the base (the snow sliding part) is blocking the views of her. Sure, I totally get that she's sliding on the snow in a very magical and whimsical way but I just can't help but feel like it's blocking the view of her.

Maybe I have to place the figure in a certain way to appreciate it more because I totally love her outfit; her scarf, mittens, ear muffs, silver high-knee stocking and skirt in contrast with her white shirt is amazing. Even more amazing is her face expression: that serious look she has and depending on how I place her, her hair will block the view of her face :{


Also, glad to hear you had good experience buying figures from private sellers; I always feel nervous when buying from strangers and I always have that fear of buying a figure from someone who truly believes they have a real item when in fact it is a fake.
24 dias atrás
4pt
Rajke Ca Fanatic
Good review. I honestly didn't know about this figure. The dynamics in this figure are amazing and it is absolutely a figure to be proud of. Her expression is a very confident and taunting one. However her feet is placed in such a way that i would think she will slide from her board within three seconds.
Hatsune Miku has one feature that only a few characters can do. Taking on different poses, theme's, colors and staying true to her character. She can be the Yandere next door, a zombie girl with halloween, the happy chibi girl in a catgirl outfit. It all suits her.
The complexity of this figure in combination with the good quality makes this indeed a very beautiful piece of art.
25 dias atrás
7pt
Amazing pictures and review as usual.

I read an article on MFC a while back that was about Miku always smiling ... I'm pleasantly surprised to see her in this figure not really smiling, but having a more serious, determined look on her face as if she's racing down the hill and almost in first place.

My favorite part about this figure would have to be the mittens. I think they're so cute and well done. I also love the raised base and wish more figures had this, as I feel like it gives a variety to how and where you can display your figures. However, her ankle gives me anxiety like she might be falling.
25 dias atrás