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Transformers Toy Review Archive (older series, 1984 to date)
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Seerus Nalaius' review of: Shockblast, foreword by Clay

Name: Shockblast
Allegiance: Decepticon
Function: Strategist
Sub-Group: NA

One of the neatest things about the Alternator line is the realistic, detailed alternate modes. One of the nicest things about the Alternator line is giving them to characters that never had them before.

Since Transformers was a line cobbled together from existing franchises, there were obviously going to be some inconsistencies. Before, the novelty of unconnected, transforming toys was enough; the problem of scale was a non-issue, since there was no fiction dictating that everything had to interact with everything else. Naturally, this produced a kink in the original series for some of the characters, what with all of that 'Physical Law of the Conservation of Mass' hooey. Guns and cassette tapes could be robots the same size as space shuttles and tanks, but a good explanation was never really provided for that.

Enter Shockwave. My memories of the original toy are vague and Radio Shack-esque, but I do remember him looking so much cooler than Megatron. Ultimately, even though I did inherit my cousin's Transformers (my first toys of my own were from 1986 and beyond), Shockwave just wasn't in there, so I just had to make due without a transforming laser pistol. (Mom wouldn't let me play with guns anyway, so it wouldn't have mattered). I knew Shockwave was a cool guy, though, because he was in the old catalogue that came with Jay's toys. I later grew up and out of toys, and all that was forgotten for a long while.

Fast-forward to 2004, with the release of Energon Shock... blast. Apparently, in the 15-some year interim between Action Masters and Energon, the name "Shockwave" was scuttled away to some other toy company while Hasbro wasn't paying attention. Ah, well... spilt milk, etc etc. Anyway, what was most interesting to me about the new toy is that it represented Shockwave while he was still on Cybertron, with no need for a disguise (yes, I know he actually had the gun-mode on Cybertron, too. Just bear with me). With heavy armor, artillery out the wazoo, and a completely unrestricted cannon-arm, it had everything a Decepticon commander should have (and, yes, I know Shockblast was never actually a commander in Energon. Just bear with me again). This is what Shockwave should have been all along.

A few months later, a final surprise popped up: a repaint of Alternator Jazz/Meister. The first pictures were just teases showing the colors, but, in true dramatic style, the last picture was simple mug shot of that emotionless, cyclopean, edge-of-the-remote-control face. This made me quite happy, especially on seeing the final toy, because it provided the complete juxtaposition of the other Shockblast. Shockwave finally received an adequate Earth disguise. The cannon-arm was minimized and adapted to the alternate mode; he picked up an automotive machine gun, and had an outstandingly stylish car model to hide himself in. The result is something I'm quite impressed with: Shockwave as an actual "robot in disguise". It was the only logical turn of events, I suppose. —Clay

I never had a Shockwave toy when I was young, and sadly by the time I did get into Transformers the line was ending. When I did rediscover Transformers sometime later in the future, my attention was drawing to Shockwave for some unknown reason. Naturally, when the Energon line released Shockblast and Six Shot, I snatched them up. And when I lucked out with finding an Alternator Shockblast, he too joined the ranks along my shelves. Anyway, let get on with the review shall we?

Vehicle Mode:
I'm not too big on cars, so I know very little about how the RX-8 is really supposed to look, but since Mazda obviously was involved, I would imagine this is the perfect representation. And from what I see, the RX-8 is one sweeeeet machine. Since I don't have a Meister, I can't compare any external difference with him and Shockblast, but from what the pics show, there probably aren't any. Shockblast's dark purple looks great on the car, and his license plate reads "SHKWAV", even though it's Blast. Shockblast has some limited black around his windows, and his rubber wheels have "Cybertronian Radial" written on them too. The front hood isn't able to really open, but the trunk can, but there's not much to do with it. The interior is wonderfully detailed too, and if it went for a tiny crack of open space between the waist and legs, you would have no clue it was really a robot in disguise. Ok ok, there is the Decepticon symbol on the license plate to give it away. This mode is a great way to display him, but if you are like me, you didn't by the toy because of his vehicle mode.

Robot Mode:
Here's the real fun! After a not so complicated transformation, Shockblast is ready to inspire fear and awe. His body is like Meister's, but colored better, and he has a new head sculpt, and his trademark gun hand on his left arm. The barrel of the gun is also transparent light purple plastic, just like the original Shockwave, though it doesn't light up. His head is a perfect representation of the original too, and thanks to the plastic for his head, the yellow eye can light up when held at the right angel. If you place your finger on top of the plastic and move it back and forth, you can make his eye flash while he "talks", just like in the G1 cartoon. In this mode his colors are still dark purple, but he gains some gray, a hint of silver and yellow, and some light purple highlights on his legs. He still his exhaust machine gun, so he's got the most guns out of the Alternators line yet, and he'll need them since the Decepticons are still out numbered. He's also incredibly poseable too, though with his funky feet posing can be a bit tricky. But all in all, he's probably the best Alternator out there. So give him that machine and put him on display. Shockwave is back in town!

Transformation: 8 - Not really complicated at all, it only looks that way.
Durability: 9.5 - Sturdy, though the rubber steering wheel can pop off easily and be lost.
Fun: 10 - A kickass car that hides an even more kickass robot!
Price: 10 - $20 is worth it for this fine example of an Alternator. Finding him is the real trick though.
Summary: 9.5 - What are you waiting for? Find him! Get him!

 
 
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