Wave Beach Queens Tomoe Mami Special Version Review

Hello and welcome to yet another figure review on Tiro Finale! This time, we are going to take a look at a Mami figure that has spawned what is likely the longest review of this blog with a hair over 50 photos for this review. That very figure is Wave's Beach Queens Tomoe Mami Special Version. Previously, I had already completed a review of both Beach Queens Version 2 and the Swimsuit Version Mami both also by Wave. Thus, I figured it was high time to finally complete the trio. With so much content to cover over the course of this review, I am going to keep the introduction short and jump straight into the review!
  • Manufacturer: Wave
  • Series: Beach Queens, Special Version, Puella Magi Madoka Magica
  • Price: 4,725 Yen
  • Release Date: 01/2012
  • Scale:1/10
  • Material: PVC
Front View
Wave's Beach Queens interpretation of Mami has her dressed in rather skimpy two piece bikini with little more than an additional hibiscus flower as an accessory. It is indeed a bold look and one that you either hate or love, an opinion that has divided many fans regarding this figure.

Rear View
Over towards the back, things do not get any better with Mami's bikini bottom doing its best to cover up as much as possible. While the straps and bands for her bikini top are little more than fine strings which end up as a knot at the back. Curiously, the diameter of the string on the knot is larger than the remaining string of her bikini top. A manufacturing discrepancy which is visible even from afar.

Right View
As you may have noticed by now, there is an adorable little Charlotte sitting quietly on the sand base which is where this figure earns its Special Version designation. Exclusive to pre-orders made via AmiAmi and Digitamin Online Stores, the little Charlotte figure came as a pre-order bonus of sorts. 

Left View
These days if you looking to get a first generation Beach Queens Mami, the only one that should be worth your time is the Special Version release. With a retail price of 4,000-5,500 Yen in the re-sellers market, this Mami figure has retained her value despite her controversial swimsuit. On the flip-side, the standard version has not been so lucky with a massive depreciation in terms of value even for one in good, unopened condition.

Speaking of controversial, Mami's bikini certainly looks to be a step at fan-service taken a step too far. Her bikini struggles to contain her sizable bust resulting in ample cleavage, side-boob and even under-boob. It looks almost as if Mami is wearing a swimsuit several sizes too small, a mistake very unlike her character. Still, it could be Mami experimenting with her more daring side perhaps?

Facial Close-up
Take a closer look at Mami's facial details and the distraction of Mami's skimpy swimsuit immediately moves out of focus. For the most part, Wave has done an excellent job with Mami's facial details and structure. The slight blush on her cheeks, her gentle smile, those Ume Aoki-style eyes all framed by her perfect blonde hair makes this instantly recognizable as Mami.

On top of that, viewing Mami from different angles actually evokes different emotions and expressions from Mami. From one side, Mami may appear to be slightly embarrassed. While from another, she may appear to be strikingly confident. I chalk this down to her gentle smile and relaxed eyes which allow her expression to vary between angles. 

If I had any complaints about this area, it would be regarding the application of the decals for Mami's eyes. Wave had decided to go with gloss eyes instead of the usual matte finish which can result in some significant glare and reflections in her eyes when viewed under brighter light. 

Moreover, there is a noticeable head seam which runs along the front third of Mami's head. Fortunately, the seam is not noticeable unless you view the figure from the top. If you do, your attention instead would be immediately be shifted to the large bright red hibiscus flower. Wave has done a very good job with the hibiscus flower applying a subtle color gradient on the red petals and using a bright yellow for the stamen creating a bold contrast.

Aside from the hibiscus flower, Mami's traditional hair clips are present too adding to the floral theme going on. The hairclips are colored in brown as they should be and are fixed in position slightly above Mami's twin tails.

Mami's hair clips on both sides are exactly identical between one another and Wave has done a very good job with them. You can even notice the additional floral detailing towards the center of the hair clip!

Certainly, one cannot talk about Mami's hair clip without mentioning the main subject itself, Mami's hair. More specifically, her signature twin tails. Two and a half loops on the left side and;

Two and a half loops on the right side. The number of loops are certainly correct but, the distance between each loop does appear to be spaced further apart making Mami's drills tails longer than usual. It is a nice touch, no complaints here.

In terms of color, Wave has decided to go with a brighter yellow-blonde color for Mami's hair. On top of that, there appears to be more aggressive use of toning towards the edges of her hair. It did take a little bit of time for me to get acclimatized to but once I did, I oddly liked it.

Nevertheless, I must point out the two slight stains I had on this figure which was a result of manufacturing errors. The first, is the stain on the front of Mami's left tail and, the second, is the small stain on the palm of her left hand. 

With that aspect covered, let us then shift our attention to another aspect of this Mami figure. In fact, as I have mentioned earlier, likely the most polarizing aspect of this figure when it comes to fan opinions. 

That very large aspect is of course Mami's very small swimsuit which struggle to contain her very large assets. As a figure collector, I am not explicitly opposed of revealing swimsuits or lingerie. Rather, I am often cautious about them because of the potential for unsightly seams between the article of clothing and the characters bust.

Viewed directly upfront does not reveal any flaws of noticeable boob seams. In fact, Mami's cleavage does look rather ravishing.

But take a look from the sides and these seams start to become a little more apparent.

The worst offender, for my figure at least, was the seam on her right breast which is jarringly wide! I had hoped for this not to happen but, no such luck here today. In fact, if you look very closely, you will be able to notice some glue marks too. Will it vary from figure to figure? Yes, and it all comes down to the lottery that you draw. Some will be better than others and some will be slightly worse than others.

Fortunately, the seams of the inner middle of Mami's bikini are not too apparent. But, there was one more crucial area that needed to be checked before I could breath a sigh of relief!

And that area was the under-boob. Thankfully, there were no problems here too. This was probably the focal point of my worries as many figures, especially prize ones, mess this area up the most.

Yes, knots do seem to be a recurring design for this figure.

Seams aside, the one area I disliked the most about this figure would definitely be the poor connection between the strings and the cups of Mami's bikini. There is a clear disconnect between the two and is noticeable even from afar.

Even from the opposite side, the problem persists and it is even evident on the upper straps which should be significantly less affected by it. Unfortunately, it too is not spared. 

Moving onto the back, the strings all meetup at the center of Mami's back with a knot tying it all together. Earlier I mentioned that the diameter of the strings are actually smaller than that of the knot itself but, that is not the only problem. As the strings themselves are so thin, painting them within the borders becomes an increasingly difficult task. The end result? paint which is jarringly inconsistent throughout. Wave certainly could have done much better on this one.

Take several steps back and all this issues start to become somewhat mitigated. Not because you no longer notice them but, because things start to piece together as a while a little bit better. Moreover, the strings are indeed very thin so, at a glance, they often go unnoticed and together with that its flaws.

Wave has chosen to go with a very light off-blue color for Mami's bikini and it certainly complements her stunning figure very well. Despite being in her teens, Mami's impressive figure should come as no surprise considering her role as a Magical Girl.

While the light blue color is utilized for the cloth bits and the knots, it is not applied on the strings which remain to be white. Yet another downside. 

Mami's bikini bottoms too are the string type with knots fastened both on the left and;

On the right. Just like her top, her bottoms too are fairly revealing. 

Because this is supposed to be a swimsuit, Wave had to cover up at the back too. Not that it covers up much mind you.

Moving on further down, we arrive at Mami's svelte legs. No high heels or slippers here, just her bare feet standing in a tip-toed position. It certainly does not look very comfortable.

As most figures would show, Mami does indeed have rather long legs which is often covered up by her boots and skirt. 

With this swimsuit though, there really is nothing to hide.

There may be not much to talk about of Mami's legs but, there certainly is nothing to complain about either. As far as sculpting and coloring goes, Wave did a fine job here. Messing up here too would have been disastrous.

We can see Charlotte here starring at Mami's foot and that is because, that is the mounting point between Mami and the base. That is right, there is only one peg which holds up the entire figure. It may sound rather flimsy and is as the figure wobbles around at even the slightest provocation. But, it is strong and that is perhaps the only thing that matters.

Just like her fingernails, Mami's toenails are painted yellow too.

Then, comes the gimmicks. First up, we have Charlotte. This was way before the release of the Rebellion film and Bebe had not been revealed yet. Nevertheless, this did not stop manufacturers and fans from pairing the two together.

In fact, much of Bebe's details can be spotted on Charlotte from her cape and polka dot cap to her lengthy sleeves and candy shaped head. They are after all two of the same individuals. 

Another gimmick unique to the Beach Queens series is what is know as the H-Neck Joint. This mobile neck joint allows limited amount of articulation for the character's head. 

You could either make Mami look at Charlotte with gentle concern.

Or tilt it away as if she was giggling.

The options are entirely up to your creativity.

Just do not get any wise ideas about separating Mami's head from her shoulders.

With much of the bases covered, we are approaching the end of this rather lengthy review. Which bugs the question, what is my final verdict on this figure?

Objectively speaking, this figure certainly has its flaws from the boob seam to the poor detailing of her swimsuit. These are often deal breakers for many when it comes to buying figures especially when it comes to reputable manufacturers such as Wave and their long-standing Beach Queens series.

Moreover, from a design standpoint of things, you have a figure which is rather controversial to say the least. A middle school girl dressed in a skimpy outfit like this may not be uncommon in the figure world. But for a series as serious as this and with a character as canonically reserved as Mami, the whole design does seem to run against Mami's personality. Rather, it almost looks like a quick fan-service cash grab rather than taking Mami seriously as a character which for a Mami fan can be rather insulting.

Enter Charlotte then, who draws a huge cog into the entire equation messing up the entire scenario where this figure would be an instant skip. It is from these early progenitors where we eventually progress into the relationship dynamic that is Mami and Bebe. In fact, these days, you would be hard pressed to find a Mami figure which does not include her!

I thought long and hard before buying this figure. Even deciding to skip it entirely at certain points but, the presence of Charlotte that would eventually become Bebe always came back to haunt me. Which leads me to the conclusion in regards to why I bought this figure in the first place. Wave's Beach Queens Tomoe Mami Special Version, reserved only for the true Mami fans and their collection. 

With that, comes a close to this review. Next up, we will have the 360 View to wrap up the review. I would love to hear what you think about both this figure and the review, do let me know your thoughts and opinions in the comment section below. Until the next time, thank you so much for reading and have yourself a wonderful day ahead!


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