REVIEW: Myethos Zhen Ji Peony Pavilion Version
Warning: Picture-heavy review - but very pretty pictures. :)
Welcome to my review of the latest Myethos figure addition to my collection - and it is the Peony Pavilion 1/7 scale figure version of Zhen Ji.
Zhen Ji is a playable character from the Chinese game "Kings of Glory" - I have never played the game and know nothing about it. What I have realized about the game though is that many of the characters are named after famous women from ancient Chinese history, which I thought was real neat (I used to love reading stories on women from ancient China when I was young. Lady Zhen was a famous woman in The Three Kingdoms era, and Wang Zhaojun was one of the Four Great Beauties of China).
Zhen Ji is not the latest figure manufactured by Myethos - the Mermaid came out after her but I chose to hold back on purchasing Zhen Ji because I had my misgivings about the figure. I never liked figures designed to be posed from the side and I felt her torso-leg ratio was disproportionate. The figure was eventually released and I saw all the photos, and finally decided last month (yep, took me half a year XD) that her design was too beautiful and elegant to pass up.
I had truthfully been waiting for Zhen Ji's price to lower and then buy her, but her price never did. On the other hand, Judith's price dropped drastically after release - the lowest I ever saw her go was JPY 5k+ preowned. Gilgamesh's value dropped as well but the Zhen Ji figure didn't follow suit and I dreaded a potential terrible aftermarket price - so when I spied a shop having her brand-new at the initial pre-order price, I jumped on the deal instantly (I got her for a total equivalent of JPY 12,500 inclusive of shipping).
As this was pandemic season, the express mail reached me yesterday after 2 weeks. I was so excited to unbox her! (especially given that the last time I unboxed a new figure was near 2 months ago)
THE BOX: 8.0/10
I believe I have mentioned this in my Myethos Mermaid review (BLOG #44257 for anyone interested), but I strongly dislike transparent boxes. The reason being, boxes like these practically provide the buyers an X-ray vision of the inside of the box, which includes all the protective packaging and foam and whatnot. My perception hasn't changed from then, and it also seems that Myethos's routine to churn out these type of boxes has not changed as well XD (their newest Tushan Yaya figure also has a transparent box).
The box is a hard plastic transparent box, and Zhen Ji isn't fully visible due to the rather unsightly white foam bits here and there. The gold lettering over the front of the box does not stand out very well due to the pastel background.
I do like the back of the box with the traditional window, and the overall colour scheme of the box with the pale shades of pink and blue green.
The sides of the box are rather pretty, with the traditional-styled drawings of plum blossoms and gold lettering.
THE PACKAGING: 9.0/10
The packaging is fantastic as always, and my figure suffered no damage. There are many foam pieces and plastic (thankfully, non-sticky) around areas prone to contact/friction. The figure itself is encased in the standard two plastic shells.
The shop also sent the figure with a bonus item, though I am unsure if this bonus is an official Myethos bonus, because there is no printed Myethos text anywhere on it. It is in the form of a life-size plum blossom Chinese fan similar to the one Zhen Ji is holding. I had initially thought to sell the bonus when I first unpacked it, but then I quickly changed my mind. The fan is really quite nice and made of white printed fabric with a pretty peach tassel at the end. I would say this bonus would be perfect for costumes/cosplays or can simply be used as a lovely background prop (it goes really well with the Zhen Ji figure).
THE POSE: 9.0/10
This figure is a stand-alone figure without any removable accessories, and comes fixed to the base. As I have mentioned at the start of the review, I don't like figures with side poses - I think they take away a lot of potential display style. Zhen Ji's pose is very elegant and beautiful - and her side pose actually showcases plenty of features of her dress. I am a bit bummed that her beautiful fan pattern is not visible in her default pose, but that's just a small nitpick. If you rotate her just slightly (in the 2nd photo), you can get the fan in perspective.
The figure is just beautiful and elegant, no matter the angle.
And I guess if we were to pose her up front, the fan would just obscure her chest. The angle from her front here makes the strange torso-limb proportion painfully obvious, and the length of her shin from the knee to the thigh is disproportionate. I would not be posing her like this, so it's a small issue.
THE SCULPT: 10.0/10
THE PAINT: 10.0/10
I am actually rating the sculpt and paint of this figure with full marks. I think Myethos did a fabulous job with this figure - especially with the face. Zhen Ji's face is stunning in my opinion, from the painted eye details (complete with the pink eyeshadow) down to her sculpted nose and pink lips. I love the sculpt of her face shape too. The figure's delicate facial features made her a very photogenic figure.
Her hair was paid equal attention in details - the fringe and hair strands were sculpted well. The headdress is beautiful, from the central red jewel to the detailed butterfly hair accessory. I also loved that the dangly bits of her headdress and ribbons all had transitioning colour shades from white to pink, instead of being left in one single lazy monochrome.
Similar to the hair accessory, the dress is very detailed and painted with different shades of pink. Her bust is not overly done, which I really appreciate. I love how they incorporated the blossoms and the translucent layers along the sleeve and the waist bodice. Sometimes too much pink and flowers can make a figure come across as gaudy, but Myethos pulled it off nicely here.
The back of her dress is equally beautiful and ends in a sexy deep V. The sculpt of the bodice and belt here is also very good (the belt had a small scuff mark on the left, but it does not bother me all that much). They sculpted her shoulder blades and spine very nicely too.
The fragile ribbons of the belt are translucent and ends in gold twin (and sharp to touch) tassels.
The lower halve of her dress layers really mimic the pretty petals of a blossom for me. The outer layer is coloured a lighter pink with a nice transition to white at the ends with accompanying dotted white spots - I have no idea what these are supposed to symbolize though - snow? glitter effect? fairy dust?
Her shoes are probably one of the prettiest aspects of this figure. Just look at that stiletto! I love how the heels are coloured dark to contrast the pink of the dress, and the front details are in the shape of a blossom. I think it is not very visible in the photo, but the back of the shoe ties up in a beautiful ribbon much like the shape of a blossom.
Her toenails are painted a pretty pink.
The traditional Chinese fan in Zhen Ji's hands is also very pretty and well-detailed. I love the plum blossom drawings and the semi-translucency.
THE BASE: 9.0/10
Perhaps I have been too used to Myethos's fantastic bases (and probably because I had the Mermaid first) - that I feel this one doesn't quite hit the wow factor as compared to the others. The water effect of the base is certainly very realistic though, the subtle swirl especially the one near her front foot really gives off the impression of slow-moving water.
The small waves of water surrounding the figure are nicely done, though not as beautiful or extravagant as the Mermaid's.
This is definitely one of Myethos's better figures, in my personal opinion - and the details on Zhen Ji really shows their improvement in sculpt and paint design as compared to their older designs that I own such as Queen Of Hearts or Stardust.
Zhen Ji is my first Chinese character figure, and not my last (as I already have Wang Zhaojun preordered - and if Myethos expands a beautiful Kings Of Glory figure line, I may just get all of them XD). I love the ethereal impression of this figure very much - the design on Zhen Ji gives off a gentle, elegant fairy-like aura. This impression is very different from the Fairytale line (I have placed Zhen Ji next to Mermaid so you can see what I mean) and I love their differences.
This figure is also really photo-friendly, and looks beautiful no matter the angle. Of course, she is similarly stunning in real time too.
The weight is an important point to note for any buyers interested to purchase her. The figure is really heavy, subjectively I feel she is even heavier than the Mermaid and I feel a lot of the weight comes from the base. I chose a bad time to purchase her what with all the couriers upping their fees, the shipping price was less than optimal though I still felt I got her for a good total price.
Other than that and the odd leg proportions, I think she is absolutely fantastic and I highly recommend the figure. From the last time I checked, her price has gone up slightly in the aftermarket so she may be pricey.
Once again, Myethos has turned out a beautifully crafted figure, overall I would rate this a 9.5 out of 10.
***EDIT: I experimented using painted decorative screens behind her :D
- Gorgeous sculpt (especially the face)
- Beautiful eye-catching design and colours
- Elegant pose
- Nice, realistic water base
- Odd leg proportion
- Heavy figure and box as a whole (shipping cost!)
- May be expensive in the aftermarket
- Somewhat lacking box design