Kotobukiya Marvel Ms. Marvel Bishoujo Statue
A "marvelous" lady joins the Marvel beauties...
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In 2009, Kotobukiya launched its Marvel Bishoujo Statue line bringing together two great flavors that taste great together: the beautiful female superheroes and villains of the Marvel Comics universe and the unique Japanese Bishoujo (“pretty girl”) style. The end result was a big hit with collectors around the world, and since the initial release of Rogue, the line has gone on to include about a dozen statues including convention exclusives and variants. The latest addition, and our subject today, is a character who’s been around for a long time and is now considered one of Marvel’s top heroines: Ms. Marvel!
Carol Danvers first appeared as an Air Force officer in the late 1960s, working together with the alien Captain Marvel in disguise. An accidental explosion granted her amazing superpowers, and in 1977 she debuted as the costumed hero Ms. Marvel. With flight, strength, invulnerability, energy powers, and more, she certainly lives up to her moniker. From then on Danvers has fought for the side of good, going through various stages of her superhero life like losing and regaining her powers, embracing different identities, and finally coming back to Ms. Marvel. Recently working with the Avengers, Ms. Marvel currently serves on the New Avengers alongside Luke Cage, Spider-Man, and others.
Koto’s packaging tends to follow a pretty basic pattern that results in a clean, sophisticated look. The box has an overall white background that automatically brings out the colors of the decorations and images. The front panel has a large window, as does one of the sides. Unfortunately, within its plastic coffin Ms. Marvel is swaddled in protective plastic wrap and thus is a little hard to see clearly. The box is emblazoned with a variety of logos and the name of the character.
Best of all is the new illustration of Ms. Marvel by Shunya Yamashita; some version of it appears on every panel of the box. The sides include a brief description of the Marvel Bishoujo line, while the back panel has a full length photo of the statue along with a comprehensive writeup at the bottom. Finally, there’s a small “coming soon” advertisement for the next statue, Jean Grey.
The bishoujo style, which you can see in hundreds of Koto’s other statue and Ani*Statue lines, is a specific Japanese art style of showcasing women. In general there’s a strong focus on beauty, including careful attention paid to pose and the shape of the body. There’s usually no nudity, though provocative poses and skimpy clothing abound. Of course, the most obvious sign of the bishoujo style is the face. Reminiscent of manga and anime characters, bishoujo girls have traditional large eyes and small noses and mouths. Ms. Marvel embodies all of these design elements, added to her unique character and costume. All Marvel Bishoujo Fine Art Statues are based on original character art by renowned illustrator Shunya Yamashita.
The superheroine Ms. Marvel is known for her power and strength, and those are exactly the qualities this statue portrays. Danvers, just over 9 inches tall, explodes into action, launching herself into flight with one leg still touching the ground and the other tucked up beneath her. Ms. Marvel’s hands are in mid-extension at her sides and you can see the flex of her arm as she raises them. Her body is amazing, muscular yet voluptuous, and her costume accentuates rather than hides her curves. Depending on the angle, you’ll most likely find your eyes drawn to Ms. Marvel’s nearly naked derriere, emphasized by her raised leg and her slightly twisted pose. The statue’s sculpt is excellent, really capturing the fantastical mix of softness and firmness inherent in female superheroes. Beyond the basic anatomy, Marvel’s costume is crafted with a smooth finish decorated with creases and stretching in the tighter areas. Of particular note is the head sculpt; Ms. Marvel has a beautiful bishoujo-styled face that looks great with her costume’s mask and her long tendrils of hair are quite detailed.
As a Bishoujo Statue, Ms. Marvel needs to look great in her one position, and that’s highly dependent on her paint job. Thankfully, the artists at Kotobukiya have succeeded in that respect as well. Ms. Marvel is full of great contrasts starting with her pale skin tone and her dark costume. Her bodysuit and matching sexy thigh high boots and long gloves are black with gold accents, all of which is done in a really high gloss (as is her cool metallic red waist cloth). Marvel’s face too uses alternating colors to great effect with the black mask, deep blue eyes, and bright red lipstick. The statue even employs translucent material for the heroine’s hair that combined with a golden-brown paint looks ethereal.
Ms. Marvel actually does have accessories, and they’re really cool and appropriate for the character. Out of the box she’ll be rising into the hair with her hands outstretched. But, add on the energy burst effects and she takes on a wholly different demeanor, ready to blast her enemies. These twin plastic parts look like miniature explosions made of orange and yellow translucent plastic, and they fit perfectly onto Marvel’s hands. Whether or not you include them in your display is a personal preference; she looks great with or without them. Not exactly an “accessory” but still a separate part of the statue is its base. For Ms. Marvel the team at Koto went with a smashed street scene of broken concrete. Even this is highly detailed and looks really nice.
American comic book readers may be surprised by the style of these statues, but their allure cannot be denied. They look great, and they’re fantastic new interpretations of your favorite women of the Marvel Universe. Even better, Ms. Marvel is a member of the newest incarnation of the Bishoujo lineup that has moved up to the 1/7th scale (they used to be 1/8th), so you’re getting even more! Ms. Marvel is a great standalone statue, but she also goes well with the other Marvel Bishoujo ladies. There’s also a limited edition variant in Danvers’ Binary incarnation coming later this year, so look out for that if you’re a hardcore Ms. Marvel fan.
Review and Photos by Scott Rubin
Review Sample Courtesy of Kotobukiya