DX4 Tomoe Mami School Uniform Version Review

Hello and welcome to what is possibly the only scale figure of Tomoe Mami in a her School Uniform. Take a moment to let that sink in and run through every other Mami figure in your memory to cross-reference for any School Uniform scale figures. Off the top of my head, I can name Azone and Medicom's Mami which are both doll-figure hybrids, Figma Mami which is more akin to an action figure, GSC's Nendoroid and Nendoroid Petit which are both non-scale and the Petanko deformed scale figures. Otherwise, the next closest thing we can get to a School Uniform Mami figure is the upcoming ones by Banpresto which come a good 5 years after the initial release of this DX4 Mami! With all the years that have passed, has this Mami figure withstand the test of time? Let us find out!
  • Manufacturer: Banpresto
  • Series: Puella Magi Madoka Magica, School Uniform Ver.
  • Price: NA (~1,200 - 1,800 Yen)
  • Release Date: 07/2012
  • Scale: Non-scale
  • Material: PVC
Front View
From the front, we can observe that there is nothing very special going on. Just Mami in her School Uniform complete with her bright red bow, pin-striped skirt and dark stockings. Banpresto certainly did not stray too far from the reference material with every detail carefully reproduced.
Rear View
While Mami's pose itself is fairly simple, it encapsulates her demure and lady-like stature and character very well. Moreover, much of this figure's notable mentions come in the form of its finer details which we will explore in a bit.

Right View
Aside from her Mitakihara school uniform, Mami's signature twin-tails and floral-shaped hairpiece are present too. In fact, the way her left leg is bent inwards is a reference to her original concept art too!
Left View
Speaking of concept art, Mami's skirt may appear to be a little on the short side. Nevertheless, this too follows the original concept art of Mami in her school uniform. What would a Magical Girl be without her short skirt right?

Moving onto facial details, Banpresto gets it spot on here too without great detailing for both Mami's hair and facial expressions. Her fringe, in particular, is extremely well sculpted and detailed to ensure it looks like hair and not look a solid block of PVC. It also helps that the shade of yellow/blonde used is right on the mark too straddling the fine balance of contrast and saturation.

Being one of the earlier Madoka Magica figures, Banpresto were careful not to deviate far from the source material. Instead, opting to retain key features such as Ume Aoki's handrawn styled eyes which are certainly one of the biggest defining factors of the Magica Quartet. Mami's winking expression with the slight smile and blush also serve as the icing on the cake.

Mami's twin-tails are fixed further towards the back of the head with the flower hairpiece serving as the mounting point and a clever cover for seams and holes. As mentioned in the preview, Mami's twin-tails have their own individual wrapping to prevent any unwanted damage or paint transfers.

Here is a closer look at Mami's hairpiece which also serves as the location of her Soul Gem when she transforms into Magical Girl form.

At a glance, they may appear to be a little too large. Instead, they are the correct size as specified by Ume Aoki's concept art. Banpresto has been careful not to deviate from the source material for Mami.

In fact, I would not hesitate to say that a large majority of this Mami figures owes itself to the original concept art drawn by Ume Aoki. Even down to the number of curls in her twin-tails. Two and a half, to be exact.

Which has since become the standard for all Mami figures.

One final look at Mami's hair before;

We shift our focus to Mami's school uniform.

If you are familiar with the Madoka Magica series, Mami's school uniform would be instantly recognizable. Worn by ever member of the Mitakihara school, the uniform consists of a coat, bow, shirt, pin-striped skirt and white shoes.

Aside from the red pin-stripe detailing which lines the borders of her coat, another notable detail of the school uniform is the ample use of bows. In total, I counted 4 of them. One is located at the back of the coat which is midway through the back. 

Another is the large red bow at the collar of her outfit. The final two are located at the back of Mami's white shoes which will see in a bit.

Mami's coat seems to downplay her bust quite a bit unlike her corset-like Magical Girl outfit which serves to do the opposite. On a more technical side of things, the two arm seams are visible at Mami's left and right shoulder. Often seams such as this are to be expected of prize figures especially those of this age (circa 2012). As such, I will give it a pass.

Mami's pointing figure is more than a pose as Banpresto has been very careful in detailing this bit too. Look closely and you will notice the silver ring Mami has on her middle finger.

This ring is actually the accessory which holds her Soul Gem in a miniaturized and more portable form. You will not get any more detailing besides a thin silver band but, having it there is definitely a plus point in my book.

Another key component of the School Uniform is the black skirt with white pin-stripe detailing. A pain to both animate in shows and paint in figures. Fortunately, that portion of detailing is handled neatly by Banpresto. With automated printing techniques, getting these finer details down to a tee is simple enough. Before I forget, check out the pockets on Mami's coat too!

I love the white ruffles at the edge of Mami's coat.

Other finer details include the teardrop shaped cutout on Mami's coat near her back collar.

The slight folds and creases in her skirt are present upon closer inspection.

Overall, I am very pleased with the top half of Mami's school uniform.

What about the lower half of Mami's school uniform?

Fortunately, or unfortunately, there is not much to report here with there just being Mami's dark stockings and white school shoes.

Her stockings are the same color throughout its length as Banpresto did not make any effort to add color toning throughout it. While some collectors may prefer this, it does not bother me too much.

Moving down, we have Mami's white school shoes which share an appearance to traditional formal women's shoes with a bit of heel to it. The final two ribbons that I mentioned earlier can be seen here.

Note the silver buckle on the strap of the shoe, Banpresto sure paid close attention to detail on this one.

Rather than having a simple white base, Mami (and the rest of the girls by extension) have a lightly decorated base with a her name, signature color and the ribbon of her school uniform being incorporated with the floral motifs of the design.

You better behave in school.

After all that is said and done, I still find myself very impressed by this figure despite its simplicity. Rather, there is a certain elegance to the simplicity of the design. By having less unnecessary details or dynamic poses to sculpt for, Banpresto has been able to focus their efforts on the core aspects of every figure; coloring, sculpting and detailing. Having accomplished that, Banpresto has successfully released a figure which has withstood the test of time.

So, is this the finest School Uniform Mami scale figure? Yes, indeed it is and not just by process of elimination. A fact that is immediately apparent when you consider how rare this Mami is in the re-sellers market. That being said, I surely hope Banpresto's upcoming Mami figures live up to expectation.

With that, comes a close to this review. If you have any questions, feel free to ask me in the comments section below. I would love to hear what you have to say. Until the next time, thank you so much for reading and have yourself a wonderful day ahead!


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