The 5th and last figure in Kotobukiya’s 1/6th line of Evangelion figures… or so I thought. When I ordered Mari here I thought she was the end of the line, how naïve was I to think this. Kotobukiya of course would milk this line more, but we’ll have to wait for miss Shikinami for quite some time. In the mean time, I think I’ll get back to Mari here.
Like the others girls in this growing set, Mari sports a rather strange pose. All of the girls excluding Misato are situated in some of the most uncomfortable postures I’ve ever tried to replicate from a figure. Yes, I’ve tried to sit in all of these poses to see how feasible I find them, now, while I’m not very flexible, I still believe that the discomfort I feel would probably translate to them as well, even if they are more flexible than I am (and they are). All 3 of the plugsuit laden girls have arched backs with twists and bends in them, but I think of the 3, Mari has the most comfortable pose. Which in my mind translates to the best pose, though they’re all quite sexy regardless.
One of the interesting themes running through this series of figures, again excluding Misato, is their bums. Asuka, Mari and Rei all seem to want us to take a good long gander at their rears, admiring their curves and the depth at which the plugsuit travels up between their cheeks. Asuka seems to be the most shy in this regard not facing her rear directly towards the viewer, Mari on the other hand is wholeheartedly encouraging this activity. The way she’s leaning on her base, twisting her back revealing the side of her left breast, the way she places her left hand on her hip and the way she extends her bum out towards the viewer. All of this is indicative that she knows what she wants, and she wants you to observe it thoroughly. So you better do so.
I didn’t realize until writing this review just how much of a spoiler Mari’s base actually is. Those of you who’ve not seen Evangelion 2.22 may want to skip over this paragraph or perhaps not even look at the base all too carefully. After re-watching Evangelion 2.22 (saw 2.0 back in theatres in November ’09), I’m reminded which Evangelion Mari ends up piloting and which Eva this base looks like. When I ordered her I just assumed it was her Evangelion she was piloting and thought nothing else of it, or that’s what I remember thinking anyway. Looking at it now I see entirely that it’s Asuka’s Eva in it’s completely liberated form, the way Mari piloted it, “The Beast”. A nice surprise, I’m glad I didn’t pick up on it earlier as it left me something to discover, and probably why I like her base so much more than the others.
I think the biggest problem with this figure of Mari is her face. I’m not sure if it’s really Mari’s face or not, she was attractive in the movie, Chamaro does a great cosplay of Mari (sighted in Akihabara as well), and I recall Max Factory’s prototype of Mari having an attractive face. But Kotobukiya’s Mari doesn’t, she looks wrong without the glasses (I never took any pictures of her this way), but I think the biggest thing that pops out at me is her mouth. It’s really strange the way her lips stick out and their shape. It almost looks like it’s supposed to be a :3 but doesn’t quite make it. Shirahige Tsukuru who’s sculpted all of this series of figures really has failed me in this regard, maybe the face will grow on me, but Rei, Misato and Asuka all have far superior faces in my opinion and Mari just doesn’t live up to their standards here.
Comparing Mari’s plugsuit colour to that of the movies, Koto’s paintjob isn’t a great match. The pinks not the right pink, the grey’s should be more black and the reds more red. All of this would have been a pretty simple fix for Kotobukiya, but none of it new. All the pictures before hand, promo or otherwise, all indicated these would be the colours so there weren’t any surprises. But that doesn’t change the fact they’re wrong. Overall her paintjob is on par with the rest and pretty well done. A lack of shading doesn’t stop her from fitting in amongst her peers as they have none either.
Originally purchasing Mari just to complete the set, which at the time she was the conclusion of, I didn’t really have much care for her. I didn’t like the pose, I didn’t like her face, I didn’t like the colours, but I needed to complete the set. I threw down the $75 or so Canadian Dollars and more or less neglected to care when she arrived. Now that she’s here, some of the things I hated upon seem to have vanished, but others have been engraved upon the surface of my brain. The thickness of her glasses are too thick, her face is strange when viewed from most angles, and the pink is entirely the wrong pink. But her pose, her pose has actually grown on me, I like that she’s sticking her bum out for me to view, I like that I can see the profile of her left breast, and I like the way she twists her back. It’s too bad though for Mari, Asuka will forever remain at the top of my list, no matter how badass or sexy she manages to be.
I still can’t get over these girls are supposed to be 14…
- More comfortable pose than the other girls, while still displaying her assets nicely
- She wants you to admire her assets
- Well sculpted like the other girls in the set
- Awesome base
- Too pale a colour scheme
- Mari’s face doesn’t look like Mari’s face and her glasses are too thick