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TRANSFORMERS TOYS AND MERCHANDISE SECTION

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Transformers Toy Review Archive (older series, 1984 to date)
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Clay's review: Grimlock

Name: Grimlock
Function: Dinobot Leader

Grimlock gets reinvented again in the latest Transformers sub-brand...

Alternate mode:

Grimlock transforms into a tyrannosaur once again. The transformation scheme is essentially identical to the original toy's, but with addition of more articulation in the legs. The mouth still opens and snaps shut with the aid of a spring, although now it can be done by pressing a button on the neck. Also like the original toy, Grimlock comes with a sword that has no storage place in the animal mode.

The overall design is decidedly cartoony, as it's the hallmark of the Animated line. Grimlock has lots of smooth surfaces with rounded edges. While I think the design theme makes the vehicle toys in the line look hideous, it works well for the animal toys like Grimlock. It also allows for some silliness: Grimlock has an under bite in both modes. The absurd look of a tyrannosaur with a dental deformity was charming enough that I bought the toy.

Robot mode:

Grimlock's robot mode is a more cartoony, more articulate version of the original. Most everything locks into place: the dino head snaps securely to the robot's back, the tail halves lock into the sides of the feet, and parts of the dino's rump clamp back to become the heels. The design is really quite solid in robot mode, and features an enormous range of motion, particularly in the legs. The elbows cannot rotate, however.

His proportions are distributed inversely compared to his t-rex mode: instead of massive hindquarters and useless forearms, Grimlock has a bulkier upper body. On the whole, Grimlock is rather impressive looking, especially considering, the awful, awful Energon version tries to do the same thing and fails: same transformation, cartoony style, and extra articulation.

About the sword: the "flames" are spring-loaded. Once Grimlock is holding it in his right hand, twisting the wrist triggers the flames. The sword is a very intricate and detailed piece of plastic, and stands in nice contrast to Grimlock himself. The receding levels of opacity in the black paint towards the tip create a nice "fire" effect, especially when held up to a light.

Transformation: 9. Grimlock is well thought-out and intuitive. Should be fun for kids and adults alike.
Durability: 9. He seems pretty solid. The only problem I can foresee is possibly losing the sword.
Fun: 10. It's a bigger, and in some ways, better Grimlock. Also, it's a tyrannosaur with an under bite. Too cute!
Price: 4. For as much as I like the toy, I don't see this as complex enough to cost $20. Whereas Alternators are made of 40,000 parts and various Voyager and Mega class figures from the past few years have come with electronics, Grimlock really isn't any more complicated or intricate than a Basic class toy. That's not too say that cramming in an electronics pack would have made the figure better, but I think $15 would have been a more reasonable price. Surely plastic doesn't cost this much...
Overall: 9. Grimlock is a very nice figure, but I think the retail price is a bit of a ripoff. Though depending on how much you like Grimlock, that may be irrelevant...
 
 
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