Muriel - ZC Girls
following is a guest review. The review
and photos do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Michael Crawford
or Michael's Review of the Week, and are the opinion and work of the
|Jeff Parker steps in tonight
look at another of the ZC Girls - Muriel! Tell us all about her, Jeff...
A big thank you once again to Michael for keeping us all up to date on
the latest releases.
Video game fans have been given a pretty short shift in the past when
it came to 1/6th scale versions of their favourite characters. There
have been plenty of smaller scale plastic figures, but if you wanted
your favourite ‘bad ass’ to be given the full, high end, fabric
dressed, fully articulated, loads of guns treatment, then you had to be
prepared to pay big and act fast.
People are still champing at the bit for some 1/6th figures from the
likes of Gears of War, HALO and Final Fantasy et al; but so far there’s
been no solid news on any of these (other than the solid sculpted
McFarlane ones from HALO).
Sideshow gave us Lara Croft last year to a mixed response, Hot Toys
have been hitting us with some great figs from Resident Evil 5
recently, and in the past Medicom did some cool figures from Metal Gear
Solid, as did Konami, but both companies figures are now hard to find
and pretty thin on the ground.
So, ZC Girl have once again seen an in-road that gives them a chance to
show off their ever improving production quality, whilst also making a
lot of gamers and kit-bashers very, very happy.
Why? Well, lets face it, although this say Muriel on the box, this is a
dead ringer for Ms
Meryl Silverburgh from MGS, and she comes with a ton of kit,
so what are we waiting for, lets get on with the show.
ZC Girl are still a relatively young company and their last few boxes
have been pretty hit and miss both in terms of design and build
quality. However, even though some of the boxes on mine have taken a
bit of a bashing on their trip from China to the UK, I’ve never
received a broken or damaged figure from them, so the packaging is
certainly doing its primary job.
This time however the packaging has taken a quantum leap in terms of
quality. The board used is pretty robust, it’s covered in full colour
images of the figure and her accessories. It’s the classic old 1/6th
figure sized box (14” x 9” x 3”) and is held shut with a magnetic flap
on the right side panel which lifts to show the figure and her
accessories. She lays in a black vac-formed tray with no twisties and a
clear plastic over tray to hols everything in place.
So whilst this won’t be taking any design awards, it’s cool to see the
quality of the materials used take such a huge jump, and the design is
ZC Girls are nurturing their own house style, they seem to be moving
away from the cutesy head sculpts they started out with and moving
towards more ‘real world’ sculpts.
Now as I said above, you only have to look at Muriel here to see she
bears a striking resemblance to Meryl
Siverburgh especially in the way she is dressed and equipped,
but you can also see a little of the character coming through in the
face. Now obviously this isn’t officially meant to be Meryl…
I guess the big clue there is that she’s called Muriel on the front of
the box. So in terms of facially looking like Meryl it’s far from spot
on, but with the headband and shock of red hair it couldn’t be anyone
The sculpt here shows strong features and is nicely observed, but it
lacks a certain ‘something’ to help bring her to life. I think it’s the
paint app, which is crisp and accurate, but needs a little more subtle
tonal work on the flesh tones. This, combined with the neutral
expression tends to make her a little mannequin like. But I have a
feeling that with a repaint she could look pretty cool… and a lot
prettier. The hair is once again rooted, and by the look and indeed
smell, I’d say her hair has had some ‘product’ applied to help keep it
in place. It does a great job as I haven’t had any stray hairs flying
about, but in the game Meryl’s actual style is nye on impossible to replicate
unless you go the sculpted route, as that flared out bit at the
back is never gonna stay in place with real hair. But as this
isn’t ‘officially’ her, I certainly won’t be marking her down,
especially as I have a thing for red heads.
I’ve given Muriel three stars, if she’d been officially licensed or
more expensive then she might have got a bit less. But ZC is definitely
building on their quality with each new release. And though not
inspiring, the apps are nonetheless accurately applied with no slop
what so ever.
She has dark ruby red lips, which look a little ‘Goth’ like when set
against her alabaster complexion. Her eye lashes and eyebrows are
beautifully painted, with tiny brush lines visible to give extra
detail, and like the last few ZC Girls she has the ERT (eye rotation
technique) feature, meaning that by removing the back of the head you
can position the eyes individually to look in all directions. The
actual eyes themselves are painted better here as well, with the outer
edge of the iris being a feathered brown tone, to compliment the hazel
of her eyes. The gloves, boots and accessories all have painted
elements as well, and all without exception are painted crisply and
- *** 1/2
She comes on the ZC EVE body; this is a pretty cool base body with all
the usual joints you’d expect from a good quality high-end figure. I’ve
been over it plenty of times before on figures like Julia and Janice. I did find that
the hip joints were a little loose on this one, but certainly not
floppy, and she poses and stands just fine.
- *** 3/4
Muriel comes with the most impressive of arsenals. And the standout
piece is the ultra cool M200
sniper rifle; this piece of kit has been replicated
beautifully. The colour is produced well, but it’s the details that
make this thing really shine. It has a removable magazine (plus 2 extra
spares), a sliding stock, flip down supports at the front with another
concealed in the stock
and a long range telescopic sight.
To help in the range finding she has a Pro
1500 Laser Rangefinder and a pocket weather meter. Her
firepower also consists of a pair of Desert Eagle pistols, one is steel
coloured with a long
barrel while the other is in the more traditional black with
barrel, I’m really liking the unusual design of the swing
holster for the long barrelled version. It mimics the one Meryl uses in
MGS, but I have no idea if it’s a ‘real world’ item. There are also a
couple of extra magazines for an automatic rifle and a long suppressor,
but these don’t seem to fit any of her weapons, but they still look
cool attached to the rest of her outfit… and as the old saying goes,
‘it’s better to have it and not need it, than need it and not have
it’. Lastly she has a MOLLE system shoulder bag with a
working top zip, just the place to keep those extra accessories when
not in use, nice haul!
- *** 3/4
For me, this is her stand out category, she comes wearing a grey zip
fronted T-shirt with black details on the arms and collar, and a pair
of separate grey sleeves that cover her arms. These go from her upper
arm, over the elbow and down to the wrist where she wears moulded green
tactical gloves. She also comes in a set of sand coloured
BDU’s consisting of combat trousers with working pockets, black accents
and zips running up the sides from the ankle to the knee. The jacket
has a drawstring hood, elasticated cuffs with Velcro tabs, working zip
pockets on the chest and patch pockets on the upper sleeves. Over this
she wears a webbing covered MOLLE system body armour rig with Velcro
straps over the shoulders and plastic push buckles at the side. The
holster for her short barrelled Desert Eagle pistol attaches to the
front (get ready for some fiddly work threading this on) and she also
has a MOLLE system belt, with D rings at the back, a drop leg pouch on
the right leg and a swing holster that attaches to the left side.
Lastly she wears moulded tactical combat boots, these are based on the
classic Oakley designs worn by modern military personnel. All in all
this is quite a layered and complex outfit but the quality is very
high. All the stitching and seams look even, and when fully kitted up
she still doesn’t look too bulky and her articulation hardly suffers at
Value - *** 1/2
I’ve based my score on the RRP which seems to be $95, but I’ve seen
Muriel on eBay with a buy it now of between $75 to $115, quite a big
swing in the price difference there. I’d say that for around $90, which
seems to be the most common price, she seems like quite a good buy, the
whole package is beautifully put together and the quality of finish is
distinctly high end, especially on the outfit and accessories.
So I’d say if you can get her for $75 (and I have seen a couple) then
you’re getting nothing short of a bargain and you can top up that final
score at your discretion.
Factor - ****
If you are a fan of MGS then this is a great depiction of Meryl
Silverburgh… maybe not ‘officially’ but with minimum work, and perhaps
a repaint you could end up with one of the best 1/6th depictions of a
character from this game released so far.
Medicom did some great MGS figures, but the prices on the earlier and
quite frankly better figures are now obscenely high, and they never
touched on the female characters at all. She has a robust enough build
to stand up to plenty of ‘aggressive’ posing and has a great selection
of weapons. So as far as fun goes, she gets the biggest of bright red
ticks in her designated box!
- *** 3/4
I’m just keeping her a gnats whisker short of perfection. It really is
a very strong release from ZC and the price is in the ‘comfortable’
category, rather than the ‘cheezuz, how much’. The box is a nice and
robust piece of protection, and for a young company the design shows
they are heading in the right direction. The figure itself poses very
well and her fatigues are tailored to fit the figure perfectly.
To really start playing with the big boys they need to start giving us
slightly better sculpts and stronger paint apps, but everything here
still manages to put the work of some bigger companies to shame. I’ve
enjoyed posing her a lot, and that sniper rifle is just too cool.
to Buy -
I’d say eBay
is your best bet, and you will find her for the prices I quoted above.
You can also contact their website direct for information on where to
This product was provided free for the review by the manufacturer.
Photos and text by Jeff Parker.