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Hatsune Miku - Vocaloid - Good Smile Racing 2014 - REVIEW 35Hatsune Miku - Vocaloid - Good Smile Racing 2014 - REVIEW 35Review

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HappyakrzHappyakrzVor 3 Monaten
Happy Summer Vacation!
Wait! Haven’t we already been on summer vacation for about twelve weeks?!?

I hope that this article finds everyone happy and healthy. My family and I have found a pretty smooth schedule here in the apple country of Michigan. We take our necessary breaks outside, we have game nights almost every night, and we nap a little more often than is absolutely necessary. But we’ve kept our health, and haven’t gone stark raving mad … yet.

With the recent protests, we ARE a little more in tune with the news every day, and it has been a sobering time to walk a pair of young teens through. Teaching them of their privilege and the grave misfortunes that befall so many innocent lives because of the disgusting prejudices of others is a tough but necessary lesson. Coming on the heels of the pandemic, it’s been even more poignant.

But we’re holding tight to our hopes and dreams .. along with each other .. and I sincerely hope that you are all in a similar situation.

My heart is with you all!

Back Story
For me, the figure upon which I focus today is the epitome of feminine exuberance, energy, and flirtation. Since the first time I saw it on MFC, I’ve wanted to have it on my shelf, but as it isn’t the most common of figures to pop up in the ad market (especially in factory-sealed condition), I didn’t really think that this figure would be purchasable any time in the near future.

But I was wrong .. yet again. This time, the figure popped up in Melbourne, Australia, and the price was perfect, so I contacted the seller and set up the transaction. What with the pandemic disrupting the shipping process of packages all over the world, I had no idea how long it would take the figure to get to my front door, but it was well worth the wait just knowing that it was on its way.

I’ll be honest, this figure – while always visually stunning to my eyes – has always concerned me a little bit due to the volume of disgruntled buyers who complained about the design and stability of the turbines on Miku’s hips. After reading so many negative reviews about this particular aspect, I was definitely a little wary of making the purchase, but the rest of the figure was still so tantalizing to me that I was willing to take the risk. Upon reflection, and having now seen the setup, I can understand the concerns on the parts of other buyers, but I’m quite pleased with how well everything fit together. I don’t foresee there being any problems with my copy of the figure, and I absolutely love how she looks with her dual power units in place.

So let’s get on with the review.

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Yamato
Hatsuna Miku – Racing Miku 2014 – 1/8 -- ITEM #198541
Sculptor: Katou Manabu -- ENTRY #8327
Vendor: private MFC seller ($165.86 in May of 2020)


The Box
The box is a pretty typical Racing Miku figure package – loads of windows through which to view the beautiful figure within, and some great photos and illustrations on all sides of the adorable character.

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The blister packaging was pretty much what I anticipated, however, the Good Smile Company was good enough to package the base and the turbines in a completely separate enclosure (below the enclosure with the actual figure), so everything was quite safely tucked in.

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The Figure
The figure comes with a set of instructions for the assembly of the turbines and connection of their hand controls to the hands of the figure. Everything in this process is quite straight forward, though I will discuss an interesting issue that I had to deal with when we get to that section of the review.

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The base for the figure took me by surprise – I wasn’t expecting a geometrical, arrow-shaped stand upon which Miku could pose, and when I first saw it, I wasn’t even sure which side was “up” until I saw the peg and slots for her booted foot. I love the purple color of the transparent plastic, and I like that the design gives her even more of an illusion of movement and speed.

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Miku’s turbines have a very intricate design, and when combined with the small decals and the “wired” hand controls, it’s really an impressive addition to the figure. I know that there are a good number of figure collectors out there who think that this accessory is somewhat “dumb looking”, but honestly, I love it. For me, it fits nicely into the high-tech, unrealistically cool, animé gadgetry-niche that seems to be so common in many storylines.

Note the light plastic “pegs” that are present at the end of each hand control, under the painted portion – these fit into similarly-shaped cavities on the backs of each of Miku’s hands.

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Miku comes as a single piece, and she is just glorious in her pose and color!

There is a single hole in the base of her left foot (matching perfectly with the peg on the base), as well as the cavities on her hands and a hole in the center of her lumbar vertibrae for the companion peg in the center of the turbine frame.

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Reviewer's Notes
Overall Sculpt
Okay, I need to get the obvious out of the way before I even get started …

This figure has one of the most adorable, flirty shapes I’ve seen on a character. I love everything about her, from her pixie-ish leg pose to the thin waist and appropriately-sized bosom to her raised shoulder to her flipping hair – everything just screams “beautiful girl” to me!

Overall, the sculpt on this figure is tremendous! The attention to detail in the actual sculpt is really breathtaking, with so many features that might typically be “textured” by paint being actually molded right into the sculpt. And even with so much detail involved, she’s still a really delicate form – her arms in particular are really thin and precise in form and pose, right down to the amazing hand poses.

Starting, as always, from the base … I love the boots/leggings that Miku wears, including the tech/design styling that seems to be one of her trademarks.

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Though I don’t usually think of Miku as being known for her long legs, I feel like this figure in particular gives her legs more length when compared to the size of her torso – the proportions just seem to be a little more in tune with giving her the appearance of longer legs.

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I also don’t think of Miku generally being displayed in a very “sexy” manner (although, certainly very attractive), and this figure is consistent with presenting a beautiful sculpt of her body without overly sexualizing it. She has a very cute bum, nonetheless.

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The turbines that had so worried me from a design perspective turned out to be a wonderful surprise. I find the fitting to be superb and there isn’t any of the overly-delicate or flimsy feel that I had expected. I’m not sure if the figure went through a redesign phase, but I’m definitely not seeing any of the issues that previous buyers had outlined in their reviews.

The detail to the engines is great and really accentuates Miku’s smooth, organic body surface in contrast with the mechanical design. I particularly love the framework that wraps around Miku’s hips without actually hugging onto the figure itself.

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I’ve read some complaints about Miku’s outfit on this figure .. that it’s modeled after a typical Japanese school swimsuit … and I have to say .. I don’t care! It’s gorgeous! It reminds me of the suit that Marilyn Monroe wears in Some Like It Hot (or something of that era), and that little bit of retro sex appeal doesn’t hurt the figure a bit! The outfit is relatively tame, while still revealing the great figure that Miku has beneath her wardrobe.

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On her back, Miku wears the typical high-tech control/power unit that helps her to control her turbines, and I like its simplicity.

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Another Miku trademark is her long gloves, stretching from her fingertips to her mid-bicep. On this figure, the gloves are accentuated by the wired controllers that rise from the base of the turbines, and I truly love how the designers were able to add the tech without adding any bulk. The overall effect is effortless power that doesn’t detract from her feminine size or delicacy – really great!

BUT, here is the only problem that I found with the figure. I’m not sure if this is just my copy, but I can imagine that it might have happened more often than just a single mistake here and there. The turbine controller for the right hand appears to have been attached to the plastic wires upside-down, as the only way for me to get the device assembled successfully was to wind the small unit to the front of her wrist and install the peg into the back of her hand, instead of keeping everything behind the wrist – the way the box and instructions show. There’s no way to assemble this fixture without wrapping it in front of her wrist (as shown in the photos). Now, if I hadn’t found this solution, I may have been disappointed in the figure, but I actually really like the way her right arm looks with the control wiring coming in front of her wrist. Did it perplex me at first? Yes. Did it bug me that a figure of this caliber would have this kind of problem? Yes. Do I still love the look of her with my solution in place? Oh, hells yes!

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Miku’s head and face are nicely sculpted, though rather simple – as seems to be the case with most Miku figures. Where she really shines is in the crazy hair patterns that her designers throw her way, and the headphone accessories that seem to change up with each outfit she wears.

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As always, Miku’s hair never ceases to impress! This sculpt is absolutely crazy, and I love it!!

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Painting
The actual painting of this figure is pristine and precise – everything looks perfect in the way of clean lines and wonderful color. The only complaint that I might have is the actual tone of Miku’s skin – it’s amazingly light. I’ve heard of porcelain skin, but this is ridiculous. It actually makes me wonder if my copy of the figure hit the painter just as they were getting to the end of their paint supply. As you can see by the photos throughout this review, there are times when the skin tone shows a little yellow and gives a “healthier, balanced” look, but more often than not, her skin looks like it actually has a little teal in it – which makes her look like she froze to death and is making her return as an ice queen zombie!

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Other than that, she’s perfect, and I am just mesmerized by the colors of green and blue in her hair.

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And even though her skin may be in need of the kiss of the sun, I love the coy look in her eyes, and the playful promise that she flirts at the viewer with every glance.

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Overall Presentation
This figure commands the front row of her shelf, and amongst her other Miku companions (along with all of the other figures in my collection), she really holds her own! She’s powerful and perfect in her pose, and her coloring draws the eye immediately. If you have the opportunity to bring her home, don’t miss it!

Comparisons
I went comparison-crazy today, so bear with me. :)

The first comparison is with my most recent figure purchase, Daisy – Original Character - 4-Leaves - Tony's Heroine Collection - "Peace Keeper" Daisy - 1/6 (Kotobukiya) -- ITEM #153069

I put these two together mostly because of their coloring, but also to give an idea of size comparison. Daisy is a large 1/6 scale, and next to Miku’s 1/8 scale, she looks like a giant!

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The second comparison is with Racing Miku from 2010 – GOOD SMILE Racing - Hatsune Miku - 1/8 - Racing 2010 (Good Smile Company) -- ITEM #42261

This just seemed like a natural pairing with the two 1/8 scale figures, though I’m still surprised that the earlier version is still so much more petite.

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The third comparison is with Umi – Love Live! School Idol Project - Sonoda Umi - 1/8 - Natsuiro egao de 1 2 Jump! ver., Swimsuit ver. (Kotobukiya) -- ITEM #166885

I love how these two look like they could almost be running together – very similar body angles and shapes. I also love how their colors compliment one another!

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The fourth comparison is with Angela – Rakuen Tsuihou: Expelled From Paradise - Angela Balzac - 1/8 (Alphamax) -- ITEM #279274

I hadn’t planned on comparing these two, but when I saw how similarly their faces were sculpted, I decided to pair them up as if they were on a team going after some unknown foe of dastardly evil enterprises. I’d like to be on that team!

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And finally, I just wanted to throw all of my Racing Miku figures into a single shot. Lovely ladies, all, but I think I finally have my favorite out front!

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Lessons Learned
I guess the best advice I can offer today is somewhat counter-productive to the mission of this review – be wary of taking too much of someone else’s opinion into account when deciding about the purchase of a figure. If I had listened to all of the reviewers that I’d read concerning this figure, I never would have made the purchase. Instead, I listened to their concerns and complaints and decided that I wanted to see for myself what kind of quality (or lack thereof) might come from the figure. Fortunately, my devotion to the figure paid off!

As always, please feel free to reach out with questions or comments! I love hearing from you all!

Until next time!
626 Hits • 3 Favouriten3 Kommentare

Punkte9/10

Sculpting
Painting
Posing
Base
Packaging
Enjoyment

Kommentare3

Interesting review. It's hard to keep up with all the different Miku figures that have been made over the years, and I didn't realize this one went all the way back to 2014-15.

I'd never really paid too much attention to this figure, but the first thing that came to my mind was how much her outfit resembled the typical sukumizu.

Those hair parts are impressive, but those types of dynamic hair parts always worry me a little bit - will they start to deform in time under their own weight?

Thanks for this review - it's always nice to see reviews of older items!
Vor 3 Monaten
I always loved this figure!! Really liked your review, kepep the good work!
I hope in the future I'll be able to get her :)
Vor 3 Monaten
Amazing photography. I have to say, after a few pictures, I was hooked. This figure used to be on my wishlist but had been removed ... after seeing your photos, she's going straight back on.

I compared her a bit to her original art on the box. I remember some complaints that she was "too sexy" ... well, it looks like they've actually covered her up quite a bit compared to the original art! Her bottoms are much less out and her midriff is definitely more covered. I think she's an intricate figure with a lot of beauty ... the base is a little "meh" for me, but they tried. Don't really understand how the purple coloring fits in, but you know what, good for the attempt. I absolutely love the ombre they do on her hair and boots ... stunning. Great find Todd!

Side note, I actually love the little "defect" your figure has. I think it looks really natural on her arm and gives it a more slender appearance and greater movement. If I ever get this figure, we're going to have to trade notes and see if mine has it too :)
Vor 3 Monaten