If you’re a figure collector and a fan of Tamaki Kousaka, you are probably a happy person. Characters come and go with respect to their popularity amongst figure makers – Iroha was a favorite character for some time, as was Ignis, and the Ikkitousen and Sengoku Rance girls had their heyday … but Tamaki – her popularity is as high as it’s ever been, at least among figure manufacturers. This particular figure puts her in a swimsuit, which isn’t particularly noteworthy. What is special about this figure is its size – she’s got many, many figures, but few of them offer a solid fifteen inches of Tamaki.
This version of Tamaki comes from Gift, a company that, like FREEing and Phat Company, is affiliated with Good Smile Company. They’re probably best known for making a bunch of cute plush toys of anime characters as well as their PVC adaptations of the Principality of Kagutsuchino’s Saber kits. Those Saber figures have sold quite well and seem to be well-regarded, but I don’t own any of them – in fact, although I have over two hundred figures, this is the first figure by Gift I’ve ever owned. I had thought about ordering it when it came out last year, but in one of the dumber hobby decisions I’ve made, I decided to get BEAT’s figure instead. Whoops; the BEAT figure was one of the first ones I put back in its box when I needed to reclaim shelf space. A few months ago, wanting to make amends for my mistake, I looked around for this Tamaki and ordered it off Amazon.
As mentioned, this is a huge figure – 1/4 scale, about 38 centimeters in height. It’s not the only 1/4 scale figure of her – Kotobukiya has one with her licking a giant popsicle scheduled for release later this year – and there’s an even bigger Dollfie Dream version of her, if that’s your thing. Even so, the sheer size of this figure is very impressive. With so many figures of anime girls in bikinis out there, it can be difficult for any particular one to stand out, but going big is one surefire way to do it. Tamaki towers almost every other figure in my collection.
The style of her sculpt is an important element that contributes significantly to her shelf presence. Like the 1/4 scale Nanoha character figures produced by Good Smile Company and Gift – and sculpted by Takayuki Kondou, the same man who created this figure – she has a distinctive, womanly body shape. Her torso is comparatively long relative to other anime figures but she doesn’t look peculiarly stretched out, unlike Alter’s upcoming Selvaria.
A lot of that is due to her body proportions, which are perhaps more realistic than many other anime figures. She has broad hips and thick thighs, both of which balance her statuesque physique. Her hips are indeed one of the best parts of this figure, emphasized by the sexy tilt of her body and enhanced by the pronounced arch of her back.
Tamaki is often depicted as a domineering man-eater – she can be seen as such in the To Heart 2: Dungeon Travelers OVA that was released last month – but here, she takes on a much more benign and much more playful look. She’s cheerfully and mischievously pulling down her bikini bottom, hiding just enough to stay on the side of tastefulness.
Her body sculpt is excellent, but I was apprehensive of her face, and those misgivings were enough to get me to pass on this figure initially. Yes, I realize that passing on a figure because of its face and then buying a BEAT figure in its place makes absolutely no sense. Anyway, now that I have this figure, I see that there was no reason for trepidation; she’s very cute, more like a flirty, friendly troublemaker and less like the fearsome face-crushing alpha female that she really is. Her face is fairly flat, and I’m guessing it’s more noticeable due to Tamaki’s substantial size, but that doesn’t bother me too much. Her hair intakes are also very cute – they’re not any different than those found on any other Tamaki figure but again, the colossal size of this figure makes them much more conspicuous.
The rest of her body is just as sexy as her hips and legs. From the side, the curve of her spine might look a bit painful, but from every other view, her back is very attractive. Similarly, her breasts are perhaps unrealistically perky but that can be overlooked in the name of sex appeal. The subtle definition of her stomach is also very attractive.
There are a ton of Tamaki figures out there but this is my favorite one of them all thus far. This version of Tamaki is big and sexy, an exemplar of how to do a swimsuit figure right. To all the figure makers out there: when making a swimsuit figure, the name of the game is go big or go home. Tamaki is so nice that I’m thinking I ought to take another look at those Nanoha figures.
Here’s Gift Tamaki next to Daiki Tamaki. Daiki Tamaki is a big figure herself, standing nearly a foot tall, but she looks like a pygmy next to Gift Tamaki. The contrast in body language and facial expressions is also interesting.
I forgot to cover up Daiki Tamaki’s tit … whoops. Normally an exposed nipple means this post gets an NSFW tag, but ehh … a nipple ain’t gonna kill you.