Happy Halloween! I guess it’s a bit early for that right? I mean it’s not for another 5 days, but it’s close enough! I’m really quite happy I managed to find Melissa Seraphy from Wagamama Capriccio for a decent price before Halloween, I have no other decorations for this occasion and I probably should, and so she seemed fitting. But that’s not the only reason I bought her of course, it’s just my excuse.
I can’t say I know much of anything about where Melissa comes from. A google search results in only sites that sell or used to sell her, reviewed her, or mention that she’s from an eroge, such as Rico’s review which was quite high on google’s results as was super rats’. So unfortunately that’s all the information I have to give, 9 months after Rico encountered the same issue with his review there’s still no further information on the internet.
The figure itself was originally released August 2006 and is the only work on MyFigureCollection that’s produced by sculptor Akihide Muraki. Which is too bad because this figure is quite well produced. Melissa retailed for ¥5,500 / $53 CAD (Exchange taken from an avg of August ’06), was produced in a scale of 1/8th and measured in at around 18 cm tall. Which makes her much shorter than I was really imagining, being only ~144 cm / 4’8.7″ tall, she’s rather loli.
Get on with it already!
Alright alright! Akihide Muraki did an excellent job in sculpting Melissa, though do to a lack of information available it’s hard to know how accurate she is. Regardless of accuracy to the source though, she’s definitely cute with her pumpkin. This unique and cute design alone is what attracted me to the figure most I think, but in addition to that I remember seeing a post somewhere where they added a light into the pumpkin. Which made me think how perfect the figure would be as a mini jack-o-lantern on my desk if I only got a light.
The colours of Melissa seem quite well chosen, black and orange have always seemed to compliment each other well. Then again I suppose black goes with just about anything. Her skin tones also seem to have just enough pink in them while maintaining a personally preferred pale look to her skin. There also appear to be 3 types of finish used, a very reflective and shiny finish on her elbow gloves, a semi-gloss on her pumpkin as well as a more matte finish for her skin and hair. Something I liked but didn’t notice until receiving her was that she had green eyes, which I think is a nice change as she’s thus far my only figure with them. Not that she wasn’t already unique enough with that big pumpkin of hers!
Tangent: Something I recently heard on As It Happens on the CBC reminds me a lot of this figure, or perhaps vise versa. They talked about the 11th Annual Windsor “Pumpkin Regatta” that happens in Windsor, Nova Scotia Canada. What happens is people hollow out the biggest pumpkins ever, paint up something fancy on the side, throw it in the water, hop into their pumpkin and row it in a race. This year they had around 50 pumpkins in the water apparently. I would love to go see this event, it really seems like it’d be a blast to watch the absurdity of it all. Gotta love the East Coast of Canada.
My favourite part of any review is always pointing out all the little terrible things in a figure. I’m not sure why this is, perhaps I’m trying to convince myself to stop spending so much money on my hobby but whatever the case there are a few issues with this figure. One of the issues is by design, Melissa can’t be displayed without her pumpkin as it’s what holds her up and what actually connects to the base. The other issues are hard for me to know if they grew over time due to the age of the figure or if they were there originally, or even if it was due to the conditions she was stored under. The most apparent of the issues for me was her tummy and how much it seems to shine. This does depend a lot on lighting as it can look quite fine but other times her tummy seems to reflect what seems to be considerably more light than the rest of her body.
The other ‘big’ issue is around her panties (queue pantyshot…. now!). I assume this is where her legs are attached to her torso and glues were used. Looking at this macro shot of her tummy and panties you can see both the above described issue as well as the glue around her right leg as well as a break in her panties above her left leg. But do keep in mind, it’s a macro shot and quite close up, it’s not so noticeable, especially if you leave the pumpkin on.
In a Nutshell
Melissa is a splendidly done figure in general and quite well produced for 2006 given others I’ve seen from the same ‘era’. I know it’s only 3 years ago, but I honestly feel like figures have been getting more and more detailed and Melissa fits in fine with any ‘modern’ figure. I do wish that her tummy didn’t reflect so much light, and that the pumpkin wasn’t required to stand her up, but I wont be displaying her without the pumpkin anyway!
Thank you Halloween for giving me an excuse…