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Transformers Toy Review Archive (older series, 1984 to date)
Robot Mode:
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Denyer's review of: Grimlock

Name: Grimlock
Allegiance: Autobot
Function: Warrior
Sub-Group: NA
"Respect builds great warriors."

A seasoned warrior, Grimlock is second in command of the construction Autobots. He looks very harsh, but is really calm and upbeat. He works closely with the Construction Team leader to pass on the tactics and experience he has gained in his many battles. He can be counted on to assess every situation and come up with a good plan of action.

Being a fairly long-term Transformers fan, it would seem odd to me if construction vehicles released in the line were anything other than green. The other three members of the Build Team got stiffed with different garish colours, which automatically makes them less cool than Grimlock... and yes, the Decepticon faction sticker in the photo is my addition.

Despite being an equally long-term fan of the original Grimlock, I don't mind the name being reused here. A back-hoe may not be the most glamorous alt-mode ever, but I do like the toy... I'd have been slightly annoyed had the name gone to a toy I couldn't stand. Apparently this Grimlock's character is a war veteran and tactical adviser to his younger boss in the Build Team, which is an interesting enough premise. I couldn't really comment further on the character not having suffered through many episodes of the show. Hey, this is a toy review anyway.

Vehicle Mode:
Grimlock is a green construction vehicle, and I'd imagine a fairly playable one for kids. It's a strong enough alt-mode to be clearly but subtly obvious after transformation, so I like it.

He's actually damn complex to transform, a consequence of the Build Team fitting together in so many permutations, and of him retaining a fair degree of articulation in both regular modes. Several times his arms popped out of the ball joint sockets, though I'll get to that rant in a bit, and I eventually went to find a pic of the robot mode just to ensure that I didn't break him completely. Oh, and I've only just discovered from it that his feet have side prongs like the walkers in Robocop. So... more complex than he might at first seem, especially if you want that pelvis not to split apart every time you move him. Alternately, you could arrange the concertina section at the sides of his abdomen, and have him walk like John Wayne after a run-in with a particularly vicious horse.

Robot Mode:
If you were ever making a toy-action version of the UK comic story City Of Fear, Grimlock would be in high demand. The guy looks like nothing so much as a robotic zombie, right down to the tendency to pose stooped asymmetrically and swing his claws in front of him. Quite scary actually. Alas, with the shoulder setup it's not very practical to pose his arms any other way... there's no elbow joint where you'd expect one, it's actually ninety degrees to the side. The arms can very easily become detached as you're twisting them. You could pose him with the claws raised to attack inwards fairly easily, though, and the shovel attaches quite neatly pointing down (rather than becoming a massive antenna as you see on the card illustration.) Not bad, though he could've used an extra peg or three to hold various joints shut.

Transformation: 9 ...not really very intuitive at all, or perhaps I'm getting old.
Durability: 6 ...arms pop back on. Lots of moving parts, though.
Fun: 8 ...very obliging in his default pose, albeit because I'm easily amused.
Price: 7 ...about eight GBP when originally released, and probably about eight dollars in the US. Shouldn't be too expensive to get one MOSC if such is your bag.
Summary: 7 ...recommended for all your undead-Constructicon needs!

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