A partnership between manufacturer Native and artist Tony Taka resulted in the latters Nakahara Tomoe from his T2 Art☆Girls series being turned into a collectible item. Unveiled little over a year ago with a pre-order period between January and March this year the figure was eventually released in late September.
Arriving in a large red box adorned with golden leaf-ridden branches gives the collector a warm welcome to what awaits inside. Within lies the figure, a bench, a plastic cloth piece, an actual cloth piece and an unassembled paper parasol. You also get a card featuring Tony Taka’s original illustration of the character.
Assembly may cause frustration as the construction of the parasol is both time-consuming and fragile. Supplied instructions feature both Japanese and English texts, a small comfort for the task at hand. Seventeen strips of double-sided tape are to be placed around the parasol holder before the top portion is aligned through a suggested clockwise maneuver.
Native have learned from previous annoyances with figures appearing shaky when sitting on various objects by letting a magnet residing inside the figure attract its counterpart found within the bench, easily clipping the duo firmly together.
You can’t have a Native product without some kind of castoff feature and this figure is no exception in that regard. One may remove the figure’s underwear and for the sake of the viewer’s convenience the figure shown herein has gone full commando in all images.
What’s not to like about Nakahara Tomoe? Not much, despite the assembly testing your patience the finished piece is a sight for sore eyes. I don’t think the optional cloth piece offers anything other than too much red and will most likely end up missing once the figure is placed upon its display.
Production value is as high as one has come to expect from a premium maker such as Native with a finely tuned sculpt and precise paint job. Teaming up with one of the most recognized artists in Tony Taka is a wise choice (just look at Alphamax/SkyTube) and hopefully we’ll see more of this partnership in the near future.