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Function: Dinobot Leader
First Cartoon Appearance: S.O.S Dinobots
First Comic Appearance: Marvel US #8 / Marvel UK #4
"Me Grimlock No Bozo, Me KING!"
Seriously, who as a kid did not want Grimlock? He was like a favorite uncle who might be stupid (or power crazy in the comics) but is still strong as anything. I can still remember as a kid playing for hours with mine as Grimlock hunted my bedroom for enemies, so he could munch metal. Grimlock also often seemed to get some of the most memorable lines in the fiction, and stood out as being the leader of one of the only early subgroups not to combine into something larger (the other team being the insecticons.) Anyway, that's enough chatter, time for some reviewing. Go easy on me.
This is Grimlock, leader of the Dinobots. What do you expect? He's a Tyrannosaurus Rex! As figures goes, this one is fairly stable. You can leave him standing for hours on end, and he will not fall over. Now the tenseness of his leg joints can be adjusted, with a fair size screwdriver, and they do have full mobility, if you want his legs in the air, they'll be there. Mind you, once you do that he will fall flat on his face. As anyone will quickly discover, his tail can't really move, as it has to become the legs in robot mode. He's fallen a few times with me, since my dog, or someone knocks him over, and he has no damage. Nice and durable, and after paying what you can expect to these days for him, that's important. ;-)
I find it surprising that Hasbro released a toy that has quite sharp teeth like Grimlocks, but it was a different era of toys. (After some experimentation, I found that when you pressed the lower jaw into the top it can rip paper.) While Grimlocks' dinosaur claws also appear sharp, they are designed so that they'll shift down if pressure is applied on them. The only disappointment with the alt-mode form of Grimlock is the arms. They are hard to move (which makes you afraid you will break them), have low detail work and have limited movement. Grimlock looks very much like what he is: a dinosaur that is robotic., not a machine that is trying to hide. When push comes to shove, it's an excellent model of the character mode we saw in the show.
This version of Grimlock has an integrated fold-out seat... this is because Grimlock (like many other early Transformers figures) originally came from a Japanese toyline that featured small riders. The seat is large enough to store missiles when closed.
Now to transform Grimlock from beast to 'bot. You first need to push his dinosaur head back towards the tail. Separate the T-Rex's chest by simply pulling them apart. You will notice a nice space now, where the T-Rex's upper torso was. Raise the T-Rex's legs to Grimlock's robot head, which now form his robot body, and push the T-Rex feet back until the hands are revealed. However, back to transformation. Once you have the upper body complete, its time to give this boy some feet to stand on. To achieve this, you've got to split the tail first, by using the tabs on the underside to help complete this. Remember that cavity, with the clear/gray plastic which I mentioned in the alternate mode review? Well, if you go a little south of it, you'll find the upper tail. You can take this piece rotate it 180 degrees. Which will reveal two legs and instate feet for him to stand on. You can make his stance wider by pushing at the mid legs to open them up. With this you have a completely transformed Grimlock.
By now you should have a fully standing Grimlock. When it comes to how close Grimlock and his weapons are to the show, he's accurate to a tee, with minor exceptions. First, he doesn't have any elbows: if you want to move the arm joints, it has to be done with his shoulders, which are screws. In this mode he carries a working missle launcher, something that he never uses in the show (it's usually a sword, or his double hand gun.) Again, it's surprising how much designs have changed over the years: the missiles are small and a young enough child could easily choke on them. Overall Grimlock is very solid, and has very decent flexibly considering that this was before the age of ball point joints.
All-in-all, a must-have figure for fans of the original Transformers.
Transformation: 6. Not hard, not too complicated, but it sure is fun!
Durability: 9. Grimlock is rock solid... I've seen him fall down stairs, I've seen him shot by Optimal Optimus! I've put the toy through torture, essentially, and he's no worse for wear.
Fun: 10. For any 'Generation One' fan, this is a great toy to have with all his weapons.
Price: 1. Better get ready to pay through the nose for one in as good condition as the one I have. Grimlock does not come cheap. To cut costs, you could buy two or more junkers and switch parts to build one complete one.
Overall: 10. If you have the money, this is one bot that is well worth the hype. Now, if we could only find a way to get Grimlock the Matrix to make him leader of the Autobots...