Tamaki Kousaka from To Heart 2 (Black Underwear Version)

Tamaki Kousaka from To Heart 2 Figure Review

Given the prevalence of Tamaki Kousaka figures in the market, it’s a little surprising that we haven’t looked at a Tamaki figure here in 364 days. It seems like you can’t go a month without seeing a new Tamaki figure go up for preorder. As much as some may decry the proliferation of Tamaki figures – and I can’t say that they don’t have a point – there does seem to be a market for them, so let’s look at this one.

Tamaki Kousaka from To Heart 2 Figure Review

This particular Tamaki comes from Clayz. More specifically, it’s sculpted by Takeshi Miyagawa, whose works comprise the bulk of Clayz’s product catalog. I only own one other Clayz figure – their old 1/6 scale Saber (and I just realized that I don’t have Clayz included in the manufacturer list in the sidebar, even after all these years of running this website). It’s not a fantastic figure, but it has a lot of nostalgic value to me, as it was one of the earliest figures I purchased. I also fondly remember the process of searching for a Saber figure, which I undertook after I started watching the Fate/stay night anime – it was more difficult to buy anime figures back then. I’ve been sort of on a nostalgic kick for a while, probably brought about by my advanced age, and so when this Tamaki figure went up for preorder I decided I’d give Clayz a shot.

Tamaki Kousaka from To Heart 2 Figure Review

Clayz lists this Tamaki as being 1/8 scale though that’s actually a very conservative estimate. She’s a fraction over 24 centimeters tall, not including the base, and being that she’s bent over at the waist, she’s closer in size to most 1/7 or 1/6 scale figures. Tamaki is ready for display right out of the box; you don’t even need to fit her on her base, as her base comes fixed to her feet. Tamaki also comes with no castoff options that I know of, which is fine with me but might be a turnoff to some collectors.

Tamaki Kousaka from To Heart 2 Figure Review

There is a ton of Tamaki figures to choose from, and the interesting thing about them is that many of them look very different from each other. This isn’t the case with some other hobby goods superstars, such as Saber, the Nanoha characters, or the Evangelion girls; the figures that those characters get tend to stay reasonably faithful to their original designs, and their sculptors tend to not put too many individual touches on them. With Tamaki, though, sculptors seem to be free to ignore her original design and indulge their stylistic inclinations. For example, Max Factory’s well-regarded figure gives her an enormous rack, Daiki Kougyou’s recent swimsuit Tamaki gives her a rounded, soft look, and the aforementioned Gift figure gives her a very womanly, broad-hipped and long-legged body. This particular Tamaki is no different, being that it bears all the hallmarks of Miyagawa’s style (though admittedly, pretty much every figure he sculpts does so as well, regardless of its source).

Tamaki Kousaka from To Heart 2 Figure Review

Miyagawa’s style is very recognizable; the faces of his figures typically have very sharp, upwardly-sloped eyes with enormous pupils, puffy cheeks, and either exuberant or neutral expressions. It’s sort of an old-school style, a bit reminiscent of the design of anime characters from the late 1980s (the puffy cheeks on his figures remind me a bit of Keroppi, the popular frog character from Sanrio’s Hello Kitty franchise who was introduced at around that time). That’s around the time that I started getting into anime, and so his style has a nostalgic appeal to me.

Tamaki Kousaka from To Heart 2 Figure Review

Tamaki is something of an anime sex symbol, and like many of her other figures, this figure presents her as such. As the figure’s version name states, she’s wearing black lingerie. That’s another thing that appeals to me; much of the appeal of anime characters revolves around specific fetishes, such as particular uniforms, thigh-high socks, various types of weaponry, headphones, musical instruments, and so on, but for some reason, you don’t see too many figures dressed in lingerie. I’m not really sure why; I wouldn’t mind seeing fewer figures dressed in swimsuits and more figures dressed in lingerie (I’d also like to see more figures dressed in blue jeans, which, for some reason, you very rarely see in anime).

Tamaki Kousaka from To Heart 2 Figure Review

At any rate, Tamaki’s clothing looks great, at least from a stylistic standpoint. She’s wearing a classic ensemble, with bra, panties, stockings, garter belt, and gloves. The black color adds a touch of seductive naughtiness, and effective shading gives her gloves and stockings a sheer look, which is quite attractive.

Tamaki Kousaka from To Heart 2 Figure Review

Tamaki’s pose is also notable. Although her whipping hair adds a touch of energy to this figure, Tamaki does not have all that dynamic of a look. This gives the position of her hands more prominence, and this leads the viewer’s attention squarely to her backside, which is undoubtedly a highlight of this figure. Her rear is generously sculpted, which looks great when complemented by her high-cut panties.

Tamaki Kousaka from To Heart 2 Figure Review

It should be noted that while that scratch on her backside looks terrible, it’s not too easy to see in normal viewing; I had to hold the figure about three inches from my eyes before I noticed it (admittedly, my eyesight is awful and your results may vary). That said, the technical quality of this figure is not tremendously impressive. Most bothersome to me is this speck on her right shoulder which I could not remove; again, it’s not easy for me to see it with just my eyesight, but just knowing that it’s there bothers the hell out of me.

Tamaki Kousaka from To Heart 2 Figure Review

The back side of her head also shows a lack of detail in her hair; though to be fair, you’d probably never see this side of her head when she’s on a shelf.

Tamaki Kousaka from To Heart 2 Figure Review

I’m equivocal on her facial expression; when I looked at her promo photos, I thought she looked like she was smiling, and I think she’d look better if she were doing so. Instead, although her mouth is parted, she doesn’t seem to be expressing anything (from some angles, I suppose she might look like she’s expressing surprise, I suppose, but given her pose, it’s sort of hard to think that that’s the case). Also, because her pupils are so big, from some angles it looks like she’s looking in two directions at once.

Tamaki Kousaka from To Heart 2 Figure Review

But despite its problems, I do like this figure quite a bit. Tamaki may be overused as a subject for figure companies, but this one still has distinctive appeal. Her clothes are very attractive, as is her pose, and while the technical faults are bothersome, I don’t think they are overwhelming. This isn’t my favorite Tamaki figure in my collection, nor is it my second favorite, but I think it looks really nice.

And it’s not even the first Tamaki I’ve received this year! We’ll look at another one shortly, from another somewhat less-known manufacturer. Well, less-known when it comes to their non-porno figures, anyway … their porno figures are kinda unforgettable.

Tamaki Kousaka from To Heart 2 Figure Review
Tamaki Kousaka from To Heart 2 Figure Review
Tamaki Kousaka from To Heart 2 Figure Review
Tamaki Kousaka from To Heart 2 Figure Review
Tamaki Kousaka from To Heart 2 Figure Review
Tamaki Kousaka from To Heart 2 Figure Review
Tamaki Kousaka from To Heart 2 Figure Review
Tamaki Kousaka from To Heart 2 Figure Review
Tamaki Kousaka from To Heart 2 Figure Review
Tamaki Kousaka from To Heart 2 Figure Review
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24 Responses to Tamaki Kousaka from To Heart 2 (Black Underwear Version)

  1. Asa says:

    A rather attractive lass, indeed. Not my kettle of fish on various fronts, but I have to say the finish quality is rather sub-par. I don’t own any Clayz figures, and any decent shots like this really don’t encourage me to get any.

    I do rather like her face, though. As you say, it is an older style that has died out, but I also like the fact that she isn’t smiling; a lot of figures like this often have really stupid looking smiles, whereas this expression, I think, suits the pose a bit better.

    • Tier says:

      It definitely is. It’s better than I expected, to be honest, but that’s because that old Saber figure I got was pretty unimpressive in a technical sense, particularly compared to anything contemporary. I still like that old Saber a lot, but that’s mostly because of nostalgic reasons. I was amazed they re-released that figure not long ago, since it really does not hold up well in terms of quality.

  2. Elixir says:

    From the pictures it looks like she is wearing poured on and sculpted chocolate lingerie. Maybe it’s the lighting? Not that I’m complaining.

    • Tier says:

      Perhaps! She has a tasty appeal. I do like the shading effect a lot; it’s pretty important for establishing texture, and it’s nice that it looks like she’s wearing silky, filmy clothing, rather than the solid, opaque thighhigh socks most anime schoolgirls wear.

  3. Lykaios says:

    I really like it. While the figure may be substandard in some respects, I think overall it is nice – half tempted to get one myself. Some of my favorite figures in my collection would be considered substandard or not of the right pedigree. Even if the figure is the bestest OF ALL TIME….even all the cool kids say so…..doesn’t mean a damn thing if you don’t like it.

    Can someone explain to me why Tamaki and Kanu are sooooo damn prolific in the figure world?? The characters and designs are cool and all, but really they are both only schoolgirls ultimately. I can’t see how they would have popularity YEARS after first appearing on the scene. Kanu seems to be slowing a bit, but Tama-nee may be GAINING a bit.

    Originality now is to have 100+ figures and not a Kanu or Tamaki in sight ^_^

    Without even trying, I have one Tamaki, one on preorder, ( a Sasara for more ToHeart2 presence in the collection) and was gifted a Kanu. That is not listing several figures I missed out on for various reasons. And I got serious about collecting only about a year and a half ago.

    This is not me complaining, I am genuinely fascinated as to how the situation came to be with the both of them.

    • Tier says:

      Yeah, many of my favorite figures are ones that aren’t big favorites elsewhere. I really love Yamato’s Diskvision-designed Iroha and Shunya Yamashita-inspired Asuka, for example. I also really like that Nymph bunnygirl figure; I was even tempted to throw it on that five favorite figures list a few months ago.

      I do not know the reason, but I heard somewhere – and I have no idea how accurate this is – that it’s really easy to get a license to produce Ikkitousen goods. I’m guessing it may be the same with To Heart and other Leaf properties (though we haven’t seem much stuff from series like Comic Party and Tears to Tiara, I guess). Conversely, I’ve heard it’s difficult to get licenses for other series, such as Final Fantasy (though I think Kotobukiya made some figures of Final Fantasy VIII and X characters some years back).

  4. Wieselhead says:

    She has a nice design, I found her very appealing in the promo shots, this Tamaki has a cute appearance, I like her alluring look over her shoulder a lot. Yeah her face is really sweet with the blush and opren *moaning* mouth. In picture 14 she’s especially nice.

    From close up she doesn’t seem to convince as much as from further away. The technical flaws are there, like scratches on her shiny bra. The gloves and stockings look a lot better again, but a figure in lingerine should’t have a scratch on her buttock, I mean she’s not even castoffable and they couldn’t get that right,

    Sad that there is still this quality difference between the popular manufacturers and the “rest”, even though they aren’t new in this business, they can’t come close to Alter, Gsc, etc.

    But oh well this Tamaki doesn’t seem to bad aside from some small flaws and even figures without perfect quality can still have a lot of charm

    • Tier says:

      Yeah, the manufacturing quality is disappointing. It’s not unexpected, but I’d still prefer not to have stuff like scratches and permanent specks on the figure. Some stuff, like flat or sloppy paint application, are forgivable but it’s harder to overlook scratches.

  5. Steve Chen says:

    Clayz? An okay company but its quality is kind off so so imho. Though Tier, aside fro your awesome shots, first hand, how’re the materials , paint job and over all quality?

    • Tier says:

      Fairly poor, I have to admit. This may just be confined to my figure, though; at least, I would hope it’s not a prevalent condition, as that would be a big problem for Clayz indeed.

  6. I could tell just by glancing at this figure that it was a Clayz work. Miyagawa’s sculpting style is very distinct, though it can be a little repetitive sometimes…I mean, just how many of his figures have tilted heads? I’ve never been completely fond of his facial sculpting, but it’s not bad.

    I own only one Clayz figure. It’s their Rin Tohsaka from aaaaaaaaalll the way back in….05? 06? The quality is ho-hum. Clayz is kind of an oddball since it doesn’t look like their quality has improved much throughout the years. They’ve never been poor quality, but never impressive either…

    I’ll never understand how there can be millions of swimsuit figures but barely any lingerie ones. And you’re right! What’s up with the lack of jeans? Max Factory’s swimsuit Narusegawa Naru and Kotobukiya & Alter’s Amaha Masane are the only three I can think of…(and Naru only “sort of counts” since she’s wearing short shorts)

    • Tier says:

      Yeah, it gets hugely repetitive; there’s something to be said for having a distinctive style but a little variation would be nice. I took a glance-through of the things he’s sculpted and there only seem to be two different facial expressions on everything he’s done.

      It’s curious how little their stuff has changed. In one sense, it’s sort of charming, sort of like a time capsule to the past … on the other hand, it does make their stuff look primitive. I had thought about picking up their Saber Extra figure, and I still do, since nobody else seems inclined to make a big figure of her (I heard Gift’s figure was sort of small), but I’m kinda wary of their stuff.

      Yeah, I don’t get it either, on either count. I can think of a few more jeans-wearing figures; I know there’s one of Tamaki (I think it’s by Griffon, but I’m not sure; it’s a safe guess, though, since they’ve done a crapload of Tamaki figures), and I think one or more figures of Nadeko Sengoku have her wearing jeans, or slacks, at least. But yeah, I always thought it was weird. I remember when I was young, my uncle liked American-style jeans; granted, he’s Korean and not Japanese, but I sorta had the sense that blue jeans were popular in East Asian countries.

  7. Wolfheinrich says:

    The world need more Sasara figures, more specifically, The Dungeon Traveler Valkyrie Sasara version! With regard to Tamaki being overused, for some reasons that is unknown to me, that there is most certainly a Tamaki cult out there, probably not as big as Saber or the Eva girls, but it’s certainly out there. I guess it’s a blessing in a way, that I absolutely hated Tamaki after watching the first few episodes of the ToHeart 2 anime, playing the game subsequently did not help her case either, or I would have to spent money yet another ultra popular characters.

    • Tier says:

      I agree. I was really hoping someone would make a nice version of her barbarian costume; I guess I should be happy that Griffon made one at all, but it doesn’t look that great to me.

      It’s sort of a strange thing; while Tamaki is undoubtedly the most popular character from To Heart 2 (and maybe from all of Leaf’s titles), she seems to be mostly popular amongst goods manufacturers rather than consumers. There are a ton of iconic, fan favorite characters, like the Eva girls, Saber, Haruhi Suzumiya (and various other members of that show’s cast), Miku Hatsune, and so on; however, Tamaki doesn’t seem to quite fit with those characters, maybe since she so seldom appears in anime (and fan works; I don’t think I’ve seen a lot of To Heart doujinshi). Very strange.

  8. Halbred says:

    I like her a lot. The pose is distinctive, as is the lingerie. I had always assumed this figure would be castoffable; kind of disappointed to see it’s not. Still a worthy addition that I may pick up down the road.

    • Tier says:

      It’s a decent figure; it’d probably be more worthwhile if it gets a discount, and I won’t be too surprised if it does get a price cut. If it lacked some of the technical deficiencies that my particular figure has, I’d rate it higher; I’m hoping that the scratches and such are peculiar to my copy, since it would not say good things for Clayz if they are not.

  9. Bongo says:

    Greetins,
    I have seen many posts of your beautiful figures and I too own few. I would like to ask if you can make post about how do you “maintain” your figures and protect them. There are several problems I have with my figures like paint migration and scratches on surface but I was unable to find how to remove these :(. I have heard that there are figure makers that use cheap paint and paint migration is result but it seems that all figures I have suffer from that problem but i don’t know why :'(.

    • Aaron says:

      I would suggest going to myfigurecollection.net. There is a large community of figure collectors there and I am sure you can find what you are looking for.

    • Tier says:

      I don’t really do much of anything, I guess. I don’t actually know what paint migration is but I haven’t noticed anything untoward regarding the paint of my oldest figures (apart from the one Saber figure that I’ve stored in a drawer for the last couple of years; it seems to have gotten a bit scratched up). The biggest problem I have are leaning figures; I have several that are warped to various degrees. I haven’t yet done anything to try to fix them, but the common solution is to use a blow dryer (on a low setting) or a warm water bath to warm up the plastic enough to bend the figure back into shape.

  10. Kai says:

    I don’t think I had suffered quite a huge scratch for any of my figures (yet), but let’s sure hope I don’t need to experience such tragedy, lol.

    Clayz seems like a company more accessible several years back instead of now. As expected, I don’t own any Clayz figure myself since I only started collecting figures recently. Not quite impressed with them though, from what I can see.

    • Tier says:

      Yeah, that’s pretty much the same way that I feel; their manufacturing quality hasn’t really kept up with other companies. They don’t seem to be as prolific as they once were, too, though perhaps that’s just my imagination; they made several high-profile figures right about when I started collecting figures, so I tend to remember them for that.

  11. Aaron says:

    I am not really a fan of this one. I think it could have been really nice, but I don’t like her face at all and her underwear looks funny to me. I can’t tell whether her underwear is ripped or if that is supposed to be the edges and even then the underwear looks way too thick.

    • Tier says:

      Takeshi Miyagawa’s style is sort of an acquired taste, I think. He is at least consistent, but I get the feeling that Clayz doesn’t get a lot of new customers (particularly compared to something like Alphamax, which has diversified a whole lot over the last year).

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