Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Figure Review: Alter's Mio Akiyama (K-On)

When K-On came out, there were only a handful of people who expected this series to be as popular as it is. The anime (both season 1 and 2) are based off a 4 panel manga. The anime embellished on the source material and is considered one of the rare examples of where the anime exceeds the manga experience. It was very popular because it was a good series that had a great cast of characters that had a interesting character dynamic along with high production values. Of the cast, one of the most popular characters was the Bass player, Mio Akiyama. Mio won over many fans because of her shy personality, long hair, and general likable nature.

Mio Akiyama, Anime Version
PVC figure company Alter made a figure of Mio that was so popular that they had to have a second production run of figures. The figure of Mio Akiyama is very well done. As seen on the left, here is here anime iteration. The PVC figure of Mio is very similar to the anime design, it is quite possibly one of the best ones to date. The facial proportions are very nice compared to the anime, I daresay that it is even better since it is less angular and feels more natural. For the fans of the anime and manga, you know that the girls of K-On are very realistically proportioned (you wont find double D's in here). Mio is more well-endowed than the rest of the cast, but she is still very realistically proportioned, especially when wearing the school uniform. The figure does a good job of showcasing Mio's modest proportions when wearing the school uniform.

The attention to detail on the outfit is great, with all the buttons in the right places. The anime of K-On does a good job in presenting Mio's very long hair. The figure does an equally good job, fluffing Mio's extremely long hair out in an action pose. The anime figure has her smiling, which is kind of unique since the shy Mio smiled less than the other happy-go-lucky cast members of K-On Anime and Manga. The figure and the facial expression of her is a very good recreation of the anime and one of the best figures I have to date. It feels very natural in the transition from 2D animation to the 3D PVC figure.

The detail is incredible!!!
The attention to detail in the Mio figure is so good, they really go all out in the detail. As you can see in the picture in the left, Mio has a guitar pick. Pretty awesome that she has a very tiny guitar pick. The bass is exquisitely detailed, with very good painting. The knobs are in the right places. The guitar actually has strings to round it out. To fit the music nature of the franchise, the base is modeled after a CD, a little detail I really didn't notice until I was writing this review.

Mio's pose is pretty good and it does exemplify the fun nature of the series. The build quality for the figure is great, it feels solid in your hands.I am a little worried that only her left leg is attached to the base, but the base seems to hold her up quite well. The figure is rather large and heavy, so I worry whether the base can hold the figure up for an extended period of time.

For fans of K-On, specifically those of Mio Akiyama, I highly recommend this figure if you can afford it. This is an Alter figure so you will likely not get this figure under $100 when you add shipping from Japan and the terrible Yen to Dollar conversion. This figure was sold out pretty fast during its original production run, so I jumped on it the moment I found out that there would be another one. It is an amazing figure and it does my favorite K-On girl justice.

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