Hayakawa Yuzuko goes against my usual taste in women. The majority of the time I don’t find women who exceed my short stature to be attractive yet I get the feeling Yuzuko here would tower over me as she’s easily the tallest figure I own and she’s only a 1/8th scale figure! Hey, hair counts! Marge Simpson might be my height but not with that hair she’s not. According to Google Marge is 259 cm (8’6″) tall! (168 cm or 5’6″ without hair).
Before Good Smile Company displayed the prototype of this figure I’d never heard of Peppermint Yuzuko (柚子ペパーミント), and since then I’ve looked for more information but really haven’t found much. I find it interesting that they’d even make a figure of something that seems so obscure. I also feel that Good Smile Company and Yokota Ken have changed the feel of Hayakawa Yuzuko (早川 柚子) considerably from the original art style. Looking at the artwork on the extras with this figure she really doesn’t look the same beyond general appearance. It makes me really question what’s up with this figure. And to just get it out of the way, why GSC, why did you change the base? I know she’s already 30 cm tall and would have been taller with the original base, but it was the original reason I pre-ordered Yuzuko. Seriously check out the awesome base she was originally displayed with, front, back, how much cooler is that than what we got?
As mentioned Yuzuko came with some extras most figures do not. I don’t feel they’re worth the steep price tag Yuzuko seems to demand with her MSRP of ¥9,800 / $109 CAD. I suppose the drama CD that was included is likely worth the extra amount if one could understand it which I sadly cannot. As such I’ve not even opened it to try it out, perhaps at a later date I will do so but it really doesn’t interest me at this point. Along with the drama CD they’ve included an art pamphlet that also acts as instructions for placing the chain around Yuzuko. The pamphlet contains an equal number of pages with art as with text and as such seems a bit of a waste to call it an art pamphlet though I have no other name to give it. I’m not sure what the extra sheet included is, it appears to be an ad of some sort, perhaps for an upcoming volume or chapter of the manga?
The changes Yokata Ken and Good Smile Company have bestowed upon Yuzuko are quite positive in my mind. Having no connection to the original character I feel she looks much sexier through their sculpt than the original artwork would suggest the character should. Yuzuko has visible breasts protruding mildly through her top creating a more mature impression of the character. Adding to this more mature Yuzuko her legs appear thicker and more adult. Topping off the improvements, Yuzuko has ‘dat ass’ that she seems to lack nearly entirely in the original artwork. I’m not sure where Yokata Ken got these characteristics for her, but I like his style.
The colour scheme of Yuzuko’s sailor outfit appears to match well with the artwork though the figure has a much more pink shirt than the artwork which appears entirely devoid of colour except for the red lining. Overall she’s quite well painted with plenty of shading in her clothing and hair. Her skirt and top are well shaded and uniform in quality, no one section seeming to stand out as lacking. Her hair is quite well shaded with greens of varying intensity, and her second head has a bit of tooth-pasty green to it along with some blues as well. I think the area lacking the most might be her skin, it does have shading but doesn’t seem to have the depth her clothes and hair seem to share.
Good Smile Company however has continued to drop the ball on overall quality. While Yuzuko is quite well painted like Index is, also like Index she has spots and marks all over. The biggest of which is a black squiggle on her right hand. On her right shoe it looks as though Yuzuko has dripped something upon them, there’s a shiny wet looking spot. Yuzuko’s bum also suffers from a molding defect of some sort in her panties. The rest are however quite small and not worth mentioning specifically.
As others have mentioned already in their reviews of Yuzuko, Yuzuko comes with two chains. The chain she has for display, and an actual chain one can attach. However there’s no way to use the actual chain to get the same effect as the display chain. And the display chain doesn’t do a great job of looking like a chain as none of the links have open centers. They include a small chain to add to the end of the display chain so you can wrap it around her arm but again I can’t help but feel a little lied to. It feels like there were 2 large changes to Yuzuko between the prototype and the release. Between the vastly different base and the poor replacement display chain I’m pretty disappointed. Though admittedly, I knew the base had changed a long time ago and continued with the order anyway, so I can’t claim that as a surprise. But the chain is still displayed on the box, just like Black Rock Shooter’s original scar was still displayed on the box. It’s deceiving and I don’t much like the bait and switch feel of it.
Unfortunately this week I couldn’t manage to be creative with lighting. I had this great idea and tried it out but just couldn’t get the effect I was going for and opted to drop the operation all together. However to make up for it, I’ve decided to bring back a favourite of mine. Let me tell you, wrapping up Drossel in a proper kikkou (??) bondage tie is quite possibly the most difficult thing I’ve ever tried. The chain was long enough, but not flexible enough like a rope would have been, so I had to improvise a little. Not many pics due to the time consuming nature of the chain, but I hope the effort was worth something. Enjoy!
So to close, I’m quite happy with Yuzuko as she is. She’s well done, she’s sexy, and the wrecking ball is unique, even if it’s only half a wrecking ball. I think had I never known the superiority of the prototype over production I would have been quite content with what I received. It’s one of those times I suppose where ignorance would be bliss. Perhaps keeping up on all the figure news as it happens is ending up as a negative rather than a positive. Sure I can get the scoop on what to expect and arrange my money properly but I feel I’m being let down more often now that I’m keeping in touch with the scene more.
The plastic packaging was rather sturdy for Yuzuko. Sturdiest yet?
- Looks considerably better than the artwork on which she’s based
- Interchangeable head is nice
- Great bottom (aka dat ass)
- Legs, nice ones
- Good Smile Company changed her design, they cut her wrecking ball in half as well as changed the appearance of her display chain
- The extras are somewhat meaningless to me, just raised the price
- Paint defects like those on her thumb, and spots throughout