Kyun Chara Vignette Tomoe Mami Review

Hello everyone and welcome to another figure review on Tiro Finale! Today, we will be taking a look at Banpresto's Kyun Chara Vignette Tomoe Mami figure. The first ever figure from the Kyun Chara Vignette to be featured on Tiro Finale, Mami came as a C Prize from the 2013 Madoka Magica Movie Ichiban Kuji lottery. For more information about the figure's packaging together with the story behind the Vignette designation, make sure to check out the Preview & Unboxing published earlier this week. Otherwise, let us go over some basic information about the figure before jumping right into the review.
  • Manufacturer: Banpresto
  • Series: Chibi Kyun-Chara, Ichiban Kuji Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica The Movie
  • Price: 600 Yen (Kuji Ticket Price, C Prize)
  • Release Date: 08/2013
  • Scale: Non-scale (~100 mm)
  • Material: PVC
Front View
From the front, we have Mami in her battle pose flanked by Charlotte on both of her sides. This is one of the more serious expressions that Mami has on a figure and it is certainly interesting to see her without her signature muskets. 

Rear View
Move around to the back, and we have much of the rear obscured by the Charlotte and Mami's stand. Looking for consistency, Banpresto opted to go with a solid white stand rather than a clear one to match the included Charlotte vignettes. It is too bad the back of the Charlotte vignettes are not printed and are left blank white. It would have been a really nice touch if both sides were printed, with the opposite side showing the back. Alas such was not the case likely because Banpresto did not have the appropriate source material and art.

Right View
From the sides we can see Mami with her outstretched hands as if she was preparing to summon another batch of muskets to be brought into combat. If you thought Mami looked serious from the front, the sides serve to emphasize Mami's combat stance even more with the torque in her torso and knees becoming more apparent. 

Left View
At first glance, I was not much a fan of Mami's pose as I felt it did not accomplish too much without her muskets present. But upon closer inspection, you begin to notice the subtle nuances of Mami's pose and the amount of effort that Banpresto has put into the sculpt to make the entire pose look natural. Every joint and limb of Mami looks appears slightly contracted, allowing her to spring into action at a moment's notice. 

So while the pose might take some time to warm up towards, how about the finer details then? Is Banpresto able to win over figure collectors and Mami fans all over the world with her fine detailing and coloring? That is what we are about to find out as we take a closer look at various aspects of this Kyun Chara Mami figure. 

Starting with Mami's facial details, we can observe that Banpresto has once again done a spectacular job in this department. With deformed scale figures, much of the attention of the figure centers on their eyes due to the large size of the head relative to the body. Especially with the characters from the Puella Magi Madoka Magica series, the execution of the eyes are even more important due to their source material having Ume Aoki's hand-drawn styled eyes. As we can see, this has been faithfully reproduced in a matte finish with the eye decals being applied without a hitch.

But, it is not just the eyes which make or break Mami's facial detailing. Other complimentary factors such as her eyebrows, hair and facial expression make a big impact of the overall identity of the figure. With her slightly inclined eyebrows paired with her calm and confident expression, Mami's look is framed perfectly with her yellow-blonde hair. Once again, Banpresto has done a spot-on job of replicating Mami's facial details. 

Shifting towards the back, there are several details which stand out namely Mami's twin-drills and the large white stand. The large white stand itself mount snugly surrounding the circumference of Mami's head. While the stand is not necessary for Mami to stand, having it keeps her standing upright even with significant force applied to the figure to topple it. 

The twin-tails themselves follow the standard protocol of two-and-a-half loops and is perfectly emulated here. In her Magical Girl form, the twin tail on the right is accompanied by Mami's Soul Gem and her cap. Both of which are very well detailed, sculpted and colored as we will explore in a bit. 

Moving towards the left, we have the other twin tail securely fastened by the floral hairpiece. Mami sports the same hairpiece even outside of her Magical Girl form. In regards to the coloring of Mami's hair, the yellow used stands on the slightly brighter side which often does not work out well for larger scale figures but, works just fine for smaller deformed scale figures. There is a subtle amount of color toning and gradient applied to the hair as well to give it an additional sense of depth and dimension. 

Here is a closer look at Mami's other hairpiece which consists of her Soul Gem and her beret-styled cap. The Soul Gem sports a bright orange "gem" in the center with a nice glossy finish. A clear colored gem is usually the preferred option but, a well finished gloss orange finish is fine too. As for the cap, the fluffy white bits at the end really stand out! Each part is well defined and sharply sculpted making it look even better than the one on the Nendoroid!

When it comes to Kyun Chara figures, Banpresto rarely messes up the upper one third. But, what about Mami's outfit? Her Magical Girl outfit has various pinstripes and highlights which make it an absolute nightmare to reproduce on a smaller scale. 

For the most part, we can see that Banpresto has done a very good job in recreating the finer details of Mami's Magical Girl outfit. For starters, the yellow (vertical) highlights and her large yellow ribbon really stand out with bright, clean painting. The white and black (horizontal) highlights are done fairly well too. Every fine detail down to the belt and buckles on Mami's corset has been reproduced on this little Kyun Chara figure. Moreover, they have been painted with great care showing only the slightest hint of paint bleeding and this is upon closer inspection. 

Towards the rear, the same attention to detail is equally present. Mami's large white ribbon towards the back is also present which is one of the pivotal components of Mami's Magical Girl outfit. 

One little aspect which surprised me was Mami's outstretched right hand where each individual finger has been sculpted. On top of that, the painting for her gloves also take care not to encroach upon her fingers. Top stuff!

Throughout the outfit, the one aspect which likely suffers the most is Mami's stockings. They are usually finished in dark purple with white pinstripes running across the length of the stockings. Banpresto has very carefully added groves where these white pinstripes would be on the stockings but, the white painting them on them is evidently hit and miss with stark inconsistencies between them. Fortunately, her boots are well detailed despite not having an actual heel. 

The base which holds up Mami is a simple round white base with a pattern of Charlotte beneath it in pink. Together with the two pegs in the base, Mami is held upright with the aid of a stand which holds her firmly upright. Without the stand, Mami still has sufficient strength to hold up her top heavy body but, topples over even with the slightest provocation. 

Accompanying Mami is the dreaded Candy Witch, Charlotte in both her original docile form;

And her more deadly, true form. Together, they make up the Vignette component of the Kyun Chara Vignette series which aims to capture a little essence of the original show with a diorama of sorts. 

Cost-wise, I am almost certain that this Kyun Chara Vignette costs no more than an ordinary Kyun Chara figure especially those featured as top tier prizes in the Ichiban Kuji lottery. What you gain in the form of an additional background and painted base, you make up for with a lack of weapons or effect parts. Every other aspect such as quality, sculpt and painting are on-par with the more "premium" Kyun Chara figures making them one of the more collectible deformed scale figures to get.

These days, a Kyun Chara Vignette Tomoe Mami figure can be found in the re-sellers market for 1,000-1,200 Yen. And for that price, you are indeed getting a lot of figure. Some may argue that such a price may be too much to pay for a deformed scale figure especially when significantly larger prize figures can be gotten for the same or less. 

To which, I bring up the matter of perspective. Where a prize figure is considered the bottom rung of scale figures, Kyun Chara figures are considered to be the middle rung of scale figures. Being in that category does not just allow the series to demand a higher price point rather, it is indicative of the quality of these figures. Kyun Chara figures easily outclass other deformed scale figures in terms of overall quality, short of Nendoroid and Cu-Poche and those cost a lot more. 

After all is said and done, Banpresto's Kyun Chara Vignette Tomoe Mami is an exceptional deformed scale figure. While the pose may leave a little something to be desired, the finer details, sculpt and coloring more than make up for those potential deficiencies. With steadily decreasing quantities, this Kyun Chara Mami may soon be one of those we no longer see in the wild. Best get her while you still can. 

With that, we come to an end to our review. If you have any questions or opinions about the review, feel free to leave them 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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