As we’ve noted before, there aren’t that many figures of characters from Horizon in the Middle of Nowhere, and those that do exist are mostly from relatively minor manufacturers. Fortunately, a couple of exceptions have been recently released: Alter’s Kazuno and Tomo Asama by Kotobukiya. This happiness is tempered by the realization that those two figures may be amongst the last figures from the series to be released (Wave has a Beach Queens Kimi Aoi scheduled to drop next month, and Volks is supposedly doing figures of Kimi and Kazuno, but who knows whether those will ever materialize). A sad state of affairs, that, and it appears that figure companies are moving on to the next big thing, such as Kantai Collection, which somehow feels a bit like it’s worn out its welcome before even having arrived. The only consolation is that if Tomo is the last Horizon figure to be made by a major figure company, she is at least a very fine one indeed.
This is the third figure of Tomo Asama, following a Beach Queens figure and a Max Factory figure, which we looked at last year. We also talked about Tomo’s backstory and personality in that post, so I’ll skip the usual character bio and go straight to the figure. This figure is manufactured by Kotobukiya in 1/8 scale and stands about 20.5 centimeters tall from base to the top of her head; however, her bow makes this figure substantially greater in overall height.
The first thing one notices when receiving this figure is the size of the box. The box is enormous; it’s easily the largest 1/8 scale figure box I’ve ever seen. Part of the rationale for its size is that Tomo’s bow doesn’t separate into parts, which would seem to be a logical way to reduce the volume of the packaging. However, another other reason why the box is so big is that the figure comes with a B2 size poster (about 19.7 by 27.8 inches) reproducing the box artwork. That’s a nice addition that I didn’t actually know about until I unpacked the figure, and its inclusion suggests that Kotobukiya really wanted to give this figure a premium feel. Unfortunately, the premium treatment necessitates a premium price; this figure was really expensive (though perhaps not the most expensive 1/8 scale figure I’ve ever seen). However, being that it seems to be in stock at the major Japanese retail stores at the time of this writing, I’m going to guess that she’ll be getting a sizeable price drop at some point.
The next thing that one might observe is that this figure comes with a ton of little parts. Once upon a time I liked figures that came with a multitude of display options but now, the sight of all those fiddly bits causes my heart to sink. Happily, Tomo is very easy to put together. The instruction sheet, though not written in English, is helpful, and her parts generally fit well.
Max Factory’s earlier figure featured a peculiar facial look, one that seemed to express some mix of terror, anguish, and surprise. Her pose was equally unusual, kneeling with her ass prominently thrust out, which I suppose was the crux of the figure’s entire concept. In contrast, Kotobukiya’s figure goes for a much less ambiguous presentation, in which she’s readying to loose some sort of torpedo (additional parts are provided to display her as if she’d just launched her ordnance). If I remember correctly, the design of this figure comes from one of the final episodes of the first season of Horizon in the Middle of Nowhere, in which she shoots down an aerial battleship. It’s obvious that this figure effects a much more palpable sense of unity of purpose and design than the Max Factory product.
As she aims her weapon, Tomo’s face shows focused intent and stern determination. She looks very appealing and her evident resolution conveys a strong sense of competence. Her mismatched traffic light eyes will also attract attention, particularly from people who might not be familiar with the character.
Tomo is labeled the “Sniper Maiden” but she is apparently not content with flinging mere arrows. Incidentally, “zudon” is apparently Japanese onomatopoeia for a bang or an explosion, so “Zudon Miko” might mean something like Boom Miko. That seems like a nickname that Tomo wouldn’t like at all.
Perhaps even more impressive is her bust. Tomo’s pose isn’t entirely practical; she’s leaning back quite a bit, which arches her body, pushes her head back, and makes it so that from many of the most typical viewing angles, her rack is going to be the first thing that is noticed about her. Horizon in the Middle of Nowhere isn’t tremendously heavy on the innuendo-laced fanservice that pervades so many contemporary anime series but it does take considerable pride in exhibiting the female figure – in a fairly casual, non-objectifying way – and Tomo is one of the best examples of the practice. Her breasts are a little strangely shaped, though, being nearly spherical in form. I would’ve preferred a more realistic appearance but given the sort of stylistic excesses that the show revels in, I don’t mind this look. It does seem like her breasts might impede the flight path of her torpedo, though.
Tomo’s outfit consists of a high-cut thong leotard worn over pink tights. It’s a very attractive outfit, one that is unique to Tomo, as most of the other characters wear a black-and-white variation of this uniform. Accenting this ensemble are a variety of mechanical bits, including robotic-looking tabi, hip protectors, and gauntlets. Mechanical wings sprout from her back, emphasizing her futuristic look. Collectively, these mechanical parts compose her Siege Mode, which sounds like something out of StarCraft (and the result – that she can launch very powerful high explosive projectiles at the cost of being rooted in place – is evocative of that game as well).
While it’s unlikely that it will be visible in normal viewing, Tomo’s ass is superb, being quite large and round in shape. Certainly it’s bigger than one typically sees in a female anime character design.
Similarly, Tomo’s thighs are thicker than one might expect. Altogether, her body build gives her an athletic look that is perfectly displayed by her impossibly tight outfit.
Tomo comes with a few additional accessories. First, she comes with an extra bowstring and right hand so that she can be displayed as if she had just shot her bow.
She also comes with this little flying familiar named Hanami, who mediates contract negotiations between Tomo and her shrine. I don’t think she’s supposed to dangle from the pylon like she’s shown here. Speaking of that pylon, it fits into a slot in the base, so if one didn’t want to display Tomo with Hanami, that empty socket is still going to be visible.
Tomo certainly wasn’t cheap, but disregarding the price, this is a great figure. Tomo looks powerful and sexy all at once, and her pose is particularly dramatic. Her physique is particularly appealing, and her outfit shows off all her curves to good effect. Kotobukiya went for a level of ambition that they seldom strive towards, and it’s apparent that they put a lot of love into Tomo. It’s paid off; I hope that they continue making Horizon figures but if they don’t, at least they’ve gone out with a bang with the Boom Miko.