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Review: Hello Kitty to Issho - Rio prize figure by EikohReview: Hello Kitty to Issho - Rio prize figure by EikohReview

MaakieMaakie2 months ago
The pantyshot in this review has been put in spoiler, so this is a sfw review!

https://static.myfigurecollection.net/upload/pictures/2020/05/05/2433105.png

Welcome to my review! Today I will be talking about a figure of Kei's Kittlyer Rio ENTRY #24684 from Hello Kitty to Issho ENTRY #1481 . This figure ITEM #54033 is made by Eikoh ENTRY #7815 . An interesting manufacturer that mostly focuses on prize goods, but has also made some prize figures of varying quality. Nowadays their quality seems to be a lot higher than the figure you see here.

I will start off with telling some more about her background.

Uh-oh!

I have finally hit a certain point as a reviewer...I was happily doing my photoshoot with this figure and when I later put the pictures on my computer I realized...I have already reviewed this figure 5+ years ago BLOG #16277 ! And completely forgot about it!

I still thought it was interesting to give her another review. I have improved my photography since then and opinions change over time, so let's see where this goes!

Background

Hello Kitty to Issho is a multimedia franchise that combines famous character artists with the cute world of Hello Kitty. The characters are called 'Kittlyers'. The Kittlyer from this review, Rio, was designed by Kei ENTRY #8605 , the famous Vocaloid artist that made the original artwork from Miku. Most of the characters designed for this franchise have around 5 different big and detailed artworks, which then get used on different pieces of merchandise and some of them also being used as reference for figures.

The reason why and how I got her

I had a hard time remembering how I got this figure originally, and according to my earlier review I have bought it as a bargain from MFC user MAWIK . I don't remember why anymore, but MAWIK had an unwanted double of the figure and I responded on her ad on this website.

As a fan of Hello Kitty, in the past I had decided to try to collect everything from Hello Kitty to Issho. However, over time it became too much, both with goods and figures, so I decided to keep it to my favorite artists their Kittlyers only: POP's ENTRY #8335 Minase Shizuku ENTRY #7409 and Akio Watanabe's ENTRY #8348 Tachibana Mikan ENTRY #7374 . Because of this selection, I have sold the Rio figure from this review shortly after my photoshoot.

Original art

https://i.ibb.co/bQZ8Nxh/reference.jpg

Above artwork was used as a direct reference to this figure. You'll see a lot of details are faithfully recreated, such as the clothes and the cute sticking-out-tongue. However, KEI's unique coloring style was not captured (although that might be too much to expect from an older figure and prize as well) and one detail was skipped: The guitar strap pushing away the left side of her dress. Next to this being hard to sculpt, they might not have wanted to delve too much into ecchi territory with this figure. Keeping the purity of Hello Kitty is important to Sanrio, so it's actually a bit surprising to see that in the original artwork in general!

Video

For people that prefer the box shots, first look and first shots of the figure as a video, please take a look at the inserted video below. For the people interested in pictures: keep on scrolling!



Parts of this video will also appear as gifs during this review! And again the following notice: Multiple of my gifs were too big for resizing and I don't have the software in which I made these gifs anymore. This means you'll have to watch the video to see all the angles and poses animated!

The Box

https://static.myfigurecollection.net/upload/pictures/2020/05/05/2433059.jpeg

There is a big front window showing you the figure and her separate pieces.

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One side shows the artwork the figure is based on.

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The other side and the backside show another artwork from Rio, in which you can see even more details in the outfit (so many bows!).

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The figure was originally sealed with one round piece of tape.

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The backside has a Sanrio Wave license sticker. Sanrio Wave specifically is the Hong Kong based office from Sanrio, their motto is "to distribute Sanrio related contents/entertainment throughout Asia and eventually the rest of the world". Which I assume means that Sanrio Wave is responsible for a big part of the Hello Kitty merchandise that gets made for especially the Asian market.

First Look

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This figure comes with quite an extensive instruction sheet. Most important to note is to make sure the guitar neck gets supported by her hand after putting it on and to be very careful with the guitar pick. Wedge it well between her fingers and make sure you don't lose it, the figure gives you only one! Not surprisingly, I have seen this figure second hand for a cheap price quite a lot of times, with the note 'missing guitar pick'.

https://i.ibb.co/pzpLPcy/kitty2.gif

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Rio comes in a blister that protects her well enough (especially considering this is a prize figure), but is still pretty compact in size.

https://static.myfigurecollection.net/upload/pictures/2020/05/05/2433069.jpeg

The figure comes with the following parts:
- Rio herself
- Hello Kitty guitar
- Hello Kitty headphones
- You guessed it! Hello Kitty shaped guitar pick
- Base (just a black disc with two pegs, it would have been nice if it was at least roughly Hello Kitty shaped!)

The Figure

https://i.ibb.co/PN9rNhH/kitty3.gif

The metallic coloring of the hair mainly shows in video/gif.

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Although not as impressive anymore by nowadays' standards, the color palette of this figure and the overall Hello Kitty theme are adorable!

Looking at all the details!

https://i.ibb.co/P4zLJzV/kitty4.gif

Even though it's a prize figure, there is quite a lot to look at!

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Starting with her face, which is very specifically made to only look good at from a certain angle, as you can see that from the front her eye decals are in different sizes (although faithful to the original artwork).

Rio has very big locks of hair, with especially the middle one in her face being a bit clunky.

https://static.myfigurecollection.net/upload/pictures/2020/05/05/2433075.jpeg

From the side, we see her look from the artwork recreated and the 'uneven eyes' now are a good look when you view her a slightly bit from above.

I would also like to point out her tongue, which is both in paint and sculpt very nice. The shape seems very natural and better than on some scaled figures I have seen! Specifically to my copy of the figure, the tip of her tongue is missing a bit of paint. Maybe me or her previous owner accidentally toppled her facing forward once? It's barely noticeable in real life, though. I actually had to zoom in on my pictures of the previous review to see it.

https://static.myfigurecollection.net/upload/pictures/2020/05/05/2433076.jpeg

Rio sports a braid with a bow at the front. The sculpt is nice, the painting so-so.

Sorry for the stray hair, my eyes didn't catch it, but the camera did.

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The sculpting of the back of the hair looks a lot better and I personally like the metallic coloring. I do have read people comment about their dislike of the hair, and I can agree that it looks very unnatural, so this seems like a very subjective part.

My copy of this figure got a small blue paint transfer on her arm, it was probably caused by moving the guitar at one point.

https://static.myfigurecollection.net/upload/pictures/2020/05/05/2433080.jpeg

There is also one separately sculpted lock at the front of Rio's hair which has been attached a bit crudely. Things like this I still sometimes even see on more recent figures and although I understand the manufacturer wanting to include all the hair movement, in my opinion parts like this would have been better off skipped.

https://static.myfigurecollection.net/upload/pictures/2020/05/05/2433082.jpeg

The Hello Kitty headphones have a nice sculpt and paint, and yes similar headphones exist in real life View spoilerHide spoiler

https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/81jdYGar%2BHL._AC_SX466_.jpg

https://cdn2.bigcommerce.com/server5500/1chnoas/products/16195/images/31495/HEADPHONE_HELLO_KITTY_MIX_MONSTER___19317.1557268268.1280.1280.jpg
, although I don't think this exact one has been recreated in human size.

https://static.myfigurecollection.net/upload/pictures/2020/05/05/2433084.jpeg

Ribbons are everywhere, even on the choker on Rio's neck.

Rio wears a white dress with a Hello Kitty face at the bottom, the top part of the dress is open, showing a striped top. The painting on the top is so-so.

https://static.myfigurecollection.net/upload/pictures/2020/05/05/2433085.jpeg

The Hello Kitty face at the bottom of the dress is simplified, showing only her yellow nose and whiskers at the front.

https://static.myfigurecollection.net/upload/pictures/2020/05/05/2433087.jpeg

And at the back it shows Kitty's tail with an additional ribbon. Also here the painting is a bit crude. What I find interesting is that there is clearly a sculpt at the back part for a belt, but it seems unfinished, next to Rio's original design not seeming to have a belt on this dress.

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The back of the dress also slightly opens, showing a bit of her striped top again.

https://static.myfigurecollection.net/upload/pictures/2020/05/05/2433090.jpeg

The guitar is a very weird mix in quality. The sculpt is super crisp, but Kitty's face seems to have been sprayed with some other colors as well in the factory. Some parts here seem like dirt, but they're actually small paint spots in black, grey, yellow and blue.

https://static.myfigurecollection.net/upload/pictures/2020/05/05/2433091.jpeg

The guitar consists of two pieces that are attached together and as you can see, there is quite a big gap. Looking at my older pictures of this figure, the gap also seems there, but not as big as it is now. Maybe the glue holding the halves together has deteriorated over time.

https://static.myfigurecollection.net/upload/pictures/2020/05/05/2433094.jpeg

The neck of the guitar is simple, but well painted. Same can be said of the strap attached to the guitar.

https://static.myfigurecollection.net/upload/pictures/2020/05/05/2433092.jpeg

My specific copy of this figure has some weird red paint splotches at the guitars' head.

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The rest of the paint is decent enough considering she is a 9 year old prize figure.

https://static.myfigurecollection.net/upload/pictures/2020/05/05/2433095.jpeg

I like the posing of the hand on the guitar neck! Makes me wonder who the sculptor is, as the sculpt itself seems very decent and most issues this figure has come from the mass production.

https://static.myfigurecollection.net/upload/pictures/2020/05/05/2433096.jpeg

The hand holding the Hello Kitty guitar pick has been sculpted nice as well. It's a bit hard to decipher Kitty's shape at first, but once you see it...!

Panty shots in the spoiler! View spoilerHide spoiler

https://static.myfigurecollection.net/upload/pictures/2020/05/05/2433097.jpeg

A bit surprising to me, but the panties are pretty detailed! I would have expected them to be plain white, but there is a Hello Kitty ribbon there and some stripes on the side that are matching with Rio's kneesocks.

https://static.myfigurecollection.net/upload/pictures/2020/05/05/2433098.jpeg

The back of the panties is completely plain, though.


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Rio wears kneehigh socks with of course...the Hello Kitty ribbon! Painting of the stripes is decent, especially if you compare it to a way more recent prize figure her stripes-fiasco: Shimakaze BLOG #43282 .

https://static.myfigurecollection.net/upload/pictures/2020/05/05/2433100.jpeg

There is a bit of shading at her knees on the socks.

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The shoes...I like their look, but not the colors. At the other parts of the figure the white, red and yellow seem to blend pretty nicely, but this screams to me: "Ronald McDonald shoes!". It's interesting that I did not have this thought the first time I reviewed her!

https://static.myfigurecollection.net/upload/pictures/2020/05/05/2433102.jpeg

I like how at the back the Kitty tail is present again.

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And of course...the bow! Are we getting tired of bows yet?

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The base of this figure is a boring disc (that is luckily not too big), which unfortunately also attracts a lot of dust.

The Points

Positive
+ This character design has a lot of details and although not completely up to nowadays' standards, it's nice to see them all included on the figure.
+ Some unexpected higher notes in sculpt, such as the tongue and hands.
+ Colorful palette and in general cute aesthetic (especially for Hello Kitty fans).

Neutral
+/- I personally like the metallic paint in her hair, but I have heard others about how it can also throw them off. Especially because of Rio having a lot of hair, it's quite a prominent feature.
+/- Only comes with one guitar pick (one of the tiniest additional pieces I have ever seen with a figure), it's easy to loose.

Negative
- Some letdowns in paint, which is common for prize figures, but a bit too much for me here.
- Boring disc base.

The Scores

Sculpting 7/10
Pretty decent sculpt for a prize figure, of which the details got a bit lost in mass production.

Painting 6/10
Quite some letdowns and random mishaps, but still pretty decent considering the age and that it's a prize.

Posing 8/10
Simple, but very cool looking with the guitar and her boldly showing her tongue!

Base 6/10
A basic disc that is luckily not too big, but nothing special as well.

Packaging 8/10
I like the big prints of the artwork and there being a big window to look at the figure in as well.

Enjoyment N/A
I decided to not rate enjoyment this time as I have sold this figure. My collection had gotten so big over time, it became easier for me to let go of older prize figures, such as this one. I had to make selections, but if I still was actively collecting everything Hello Kitty to Issho, I probably would have kept her.

Comparison with my earlier review

Looking back at my earlier review BLOG #16277 , it's the most visible that the quality of my pictures was a lot lower back then. I also notice that I indeed wasn't as thorough with cracking down the details, but some of that seems to be from the photography as well, for example: My close-ups of the guitar are a lot less crisp. I also find it interesting that back then I expected the hair to be ugly and I was positively surprised. I also referenced to her back then as 'looking like a DJ giving a cheeky smile at the camera', which I completely forgot about, but still chimes a bit true! For some reason I also completely forgot to look at the back of Rio's guitar in this review, which I did in my previous review! But the most interesting might be that my negative points from back then, are right now not really an issue for me anymore (mismatched eyebrow/hair color, lack of detail in eyes and guitar pick sculpt), those issues seem to blend more now. I do find that some things I'm now more critical on, weren't mentioned before, how was it even possible for me to not mention the face only looking good from one angle?

When I look more literally at the scores I gave back then versus now:

Sculpting: Was 8, now 7
Painting: Was 7, now 6
Even though I was kind on the scores with the age of the figure, my standards back then were a bit lower, next to there not being such a huge improvement yet in prize figure quality as we see now.

Posing: Was 8, now 8
The only score that has stayed the same! Even 5+ years later, the posing is still nice!

Base: Was 5, now 6
It seems like I have become more accepting to boring bases as I have so much figures with them!

Packaging: Was 9, now 8
I think that back then I was so impressed with the artwork on the box, which helped me give the packaging a high rating.

Enjoyment: Was 8, now N/A
Back then Rio was a bit of an impulse buy, although I was planning on expanding my Hello Kitty to Issho collection. Me getting her for cheap and being happy with my purchase, made me give her quite a high enjoyment score back then.

New score: Kitty level 10
As a Hello Kitty fan I really appreciate the high amount of bows and references and I am sure this figure will be lovely despite it's flaws for other Kitty fans as well.

Conclusion

If you are a big fan of Hello Kitty and don't mind a figure being a bit of a lower quality, this could be a nice addition to your collection. I have a bit of a hard time to recommend her to KEI fans though, as I find that KEI's style is not that well recreated on this figure (similar to how ITEM #54257 actually does not look that much like POP's).

Availability

This figure is commonly available on the regular second hand stores for 1K-2K yen on average. If you're interested in this figure, she's right now 1,5K on Mandarake: order.mandarake... . If you want a really cheap deal, I've seen copies of this figure missing the guitar pick, going for below 1K, so you could wait out a sale like that!

And to finish it!

Currently all my collection is boxed away because of my emigration, the last time I had this figure on display, it looked like this:

https://static.myfigurecollection.net/upload/pictures/2014/08/20/1078566.jpeg

I had her displayed together with some other assorted prize figures. Right now my planning for the set-up for my collection is to put my Hello Kitty to Issho items from Mikan ENTRY #7374 and Shizuku ENTRY #7409 together.

For those who read all this way, thank you! I am working on multiple blogs at the same time, so I'm not sure yet what my next one will be. It might be either my cosplay diary/walktrough of my Elin cosplay or it will be a big group order loot blog.

I hope you enjoyed this review, you could also check my other figure reviews when interested! As promised, for every new blog I would fix the image hosting of an older blog. It seemed to make sense to fix up my earlier Rio review and the referenced Shimakaze review:
Hello Kitty to Issho - Rio (Eikoh): BLOG #16277 (seeing that it got Readers' Selection in 2014 makes me really feel like an old fart...)
Kantai Collection ~Kan Colle~ - Rensouhou-chan - Shimakaze Taito: BLOG #43282

All pictures in high resolution and some extra pictures not used in the review can be found here: profile/Maakie/... .

Thank you for reading this review!

And if you like my reviews and would like to receive e-mail updates when I have a new one, you can subscribe to my blog on MFC! --> profile/Maakie/...

https://static.myfigurecollection.net/upload/pictures/2020/05/05/2433094.jpeg

See you at my next blog!
592 hits • 2 likes5 comments

Scores7/10

Sculpting
Painting
Posing
Base
Packaging
Kitty level

Comments5

Wario542 months ago#77817557Wow this takes me back! This was one of the billion figures I wanted back when I first started collecting haha, I was planning on trying the Hello Kitty to Issho game and everything. Of course, I never got around to that. ^^; But all things considered, she’s still a pretty cute figure! Interesting to see how your thoughts on her changed. I personally like the metallic finish of her hair too; it’s unique! Anyway, very nice and thorough re-review! :)

Hehe, I think she was pretty popular in the first couple of years after her release, because of her cheap price and Hello Kitty is always good! If you ever end up trying the game or getting the figure, I always like to hear! ^^ Thanks for liking the review!

victorviper2 months ago#77817567Until I started looking on YouTube, I sort of assumed that the game was some sort of a music/rhythm game, so I was surprised to learn that it was a Breakout type game. I'm always looking for new old games to keep my PSP alive, so maybe I'll keep an eye out for a copy. The language barrier doesn't seem like a big deal.

A music/rhythm game is not a bad guess, as multiple of these characters also had character CD's! I see the PSVita game more on the secondhand market than the PSP one. If you manage to get it, I would like to hear how it is! I assume the only things you would be missing out on is some character dialogue, but nowadays the Google Translate camera-app is so good, that shouldn't be an issue (if you don't mind keeping your phone ready)! :)
2 months ago
Maakie2 months ago#77817531
But these are just the characters that actively had merchandise, there are so much more characters included in the PSP and PSVita games that I wonder if there is a complete list of collaborating artist somewhere. I guess Hello Kitty to Issho was not popular enough to have it's own database or wiki. To be honest, the games are basically a basic Breakout game with cute girl art added in there.


Until I started looking on YouTube, I sort of assumed that the game was some sort of a music/rhythm game, so I was surprised to learn that it was a Breakout type game. I'm always looking for new old games to keep my PSP alive, so maybe I'll keep an eye out for a copy. The language barrier doesn't seem like a big deal.
2 months ago
Wow this takes me back! This was one of the billion figures I wanted back when I first started collecting haha, I was planning on trying the Hello Kitty to Issho game and everything. Of course, I never got around to that. ^^; But all things considered, she’s still a pretty cute figure! Interesting to see how your thoughts on her changed. I personally like the metallic finish of her hair too; it’s unique! Anyway, very nice and thorough re-review! :)
2 months ago
victorviper2 months ago#77816447It's funny that you forgot about reviewing this figure :).
I was poking around the database looking at other stuff from the franchise and I saw this ITEM #78730 item. Since the design is by Akio Watanabe, have you made any serious effort to acquire that figure (you mentioned you have some other merchandise of that chracter).
So, I gather that lots of different well-known artists did the character designs for Hello Kitty to Issho?


Maybe you will reach that point someday as well! :D I have pictures and reviews very well organized on my computer, so it was really a memory fluke. :)

My first goal was to clean up items from the Hello Kitty to Issho collection that were not Watanabe's or POP's, now that I have reached that, that figure and ITEM #56238 are very high on my list to buy soon! :) Everything is delayed with new purchases right now because of the corona of course, the country where I live in has requested to not buy anything that is not-essential because post offices are having a rough time with the amount of packages (and I would rather also not visit a busy post office in all honesty).

Only from the database we already know of (in alphabetial order):
Carnelian ENTRY #8352
Imaizumi Teruhiko ENTRY #57579
KEI ENTRY #8605
Koume Keito ENTRY #18336
Kuroboshi Kouhaku ENTRY #24229
Nishimata Aoi ENTRY #8378
okama ENTRY #8410
POP ENTRY #8335
Watanabe Akio ENTRY #8348
Zeco ENTRY #69458

But these are just the characters that actively had merchandise, there are so much more characters included in the PSP and PSVita games that I wonder if there is a complete list of collaborating artist somewhere. I guess Hello Kitty to Issho was not popular enough to have it's own database or wiki. To be honest, the games are basically a basic Breakout game with cute girl art added in there.
2 months ago
It's funny that you forgot about reviewing this figure :).

I was poking around the database looking at other stuff from the franchise and I saw this ITEM #78730 item. Since the design is by Akio Watanabe, have you made any serious effort to acquire that figure (you mentioned you have some other merchandise of that chracter).

So, I gather that lots of different well-known artists did the character designs for Hello Kitty to Issho?
2 months ago
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About this blog

 
Welcome to my figure-blog!

I mostly write reviews for this blog, since I like to read and write those kind of articles the most! I also think of them as very useful for other collectors and Japan enthusiasts!

Next to that, I also write tutorials for GK's, loot blogs, cosplay and convention-related articles and guides for hobby-related subjects...just take a look!

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