Luscious Leader of the Rambunctious Rebels
Released in 1993
So, something tells me that this figure is somewhat misleading to the customer/collector. Maybe it’s just me, but I don’t remember Mitsu being a leader to a band of Rebels, much less a full-blown princess.
True, Mitsu was part of a band of rebellious farmers that were striking back against Lord Norinaga’s planned acquisition of their land, and I guess the film could’ve done a better job illustrating her leadership skills, but I guess I could’ve paid more attention to the film. Wow, who knew the Ninja Turtle films could be such brain scratchers. But I never once heard any character in Turtles 3 refer to her as a princess, but it’s a film series about anthropomorphic turtles that do karate, I can look past a few details for the sake of story/toy sales.
The figure itself is a nice that actually looks like a Japanese female instead of a weird amalgam of a real person and a cartoon character. She’s dressed almost entirely in different shades of blue, which does a good job of setting her apart from the rest, but her robe/top is peppered with the white dots that almost look as if they were an afterthought by the design team. While this does match up with her design in the film, it looks a little off there too. I mean, I guess a female farmer/archer wearing a blue and white poke-a-dot kimono in the year 1593 isn’t impossible; it’s just not the first thing that comes to my mind. But as an action figure, it works just fine; it just seems last-minute.
Mitsu’s actual frame is a nice change of pace from someone like April or Irma, as she looks like she’s actually there to fight and not be rescued or tell a witty one-liner. Mitsu is lithe yet broad shouldered enough to look like she’s more than capable of holding her own, but her stance is a bit of a face palm in terms of displaying a figure. I’m sure I’ve already noted that these toys are meant to be played with and not just looked at. But Mitsu seems a little top-heavy for the size of her feet. Given that her knees are bent and her top half is set wide, you would think that her feet would be sculpted wider to ensure a good stance, but she is given a narrow pair of feet that make standing her up a bit of a chore, which is surprising considering that there are very few characters in this line that have such an awkward design to them.
But I really do think that her head sculpt actually makes up for this, as she has very long hair that is kept in a loose ponytail and her expression very calm and almost neutral-looking. I know that may not sound like it’s that big of a deal, but it’s actually in-line with Mitsu’s character, seeing as how she’s very stoic in the film, rarely giving a glimpse at her real emotions, while not being a stick in the mud; which, let’s be honest, is the bane of most leaders existence.
Turtle Trivia: Mitsu was actually supposed to be a playable character in the SNES version of the video game Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Tournament Fighters. Unfortunately though, she was scrapped ad replaced by a one-time character named Aska due to the mixed reactions to the third TMNT film.
*Mitsu was portrayed in the film by actress Vivian Wu