By the time I learned just how great Figma figures were, it was too late for me to purchase the original Miku Hatsune without paying insanely high prices. That’s why I jumped at the chance when Max Factory rereleased her in their Cheerful Japan line.
To help raise money and support of the victims of the earthquake and tsunami that struck Japan in early May, the Good Smile Company began selling a run of exclusive figures known as the Cheerful Japan line. The line consisted of various statues, Figma, and Nendoroid figures whose proceeds would go to the recovery support efforts.
It would have been easy for Good Smile to simply rerelease their more popular characters, but they took it a step further by adding new paint jobs and accessories. They also created a website which easily allowed customers from around the world to purchase these goods without having to go through middlemen and third party online stores.
Something else that equally impressed me was that Good Smile also fixed one of the flaws with the original Miku. Her Support Version’s release is almost the exact same sculpt as the original, except her hands have been updated. The first release had a stub on the end of each hand’s peg, which allowed it to snap into place. Unfortunately this also caused them to break off insider her arms. The new version of the figure now has the common peg that easily slides in and out of place.
As for the rest of Support Miku’s sculpt, it seems to be the same as the original figures’. She’s wearing her classic costume of a dress shirt, tie, and skirt with thigh high boots and flared out arm sleeves. Her two long ponytails flare out and are hollow on the undersides, like a spoon. It took me a bit to get used to this, since I’m much fonder of the windswept look of my Append Miku. But looking back over her original videos, the hair is pretty accurate to the 3D model’s design.
Miku’s paint job is excellent. One of the things I really like about her design is the striking contrast of her dark costume with the neon-like teal accent pieces and her hair. The Support Version’s shirt is brighter silver from the original’s, but aside from that they have the same basic paint apps.
I really love the small electronic details on her arm sleeves and the “01” character on her left shoulder. These are some of the few hints that she may not be as human as she looks. Both tampos came out crisp and easy to read, which is always nice on such tiny symbols. Continue to page 2…