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Transformers Toy Review Archive (older series, 1984 to date)
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Clog's review of some Robot Heroes

Well, it seemed a good idea - so here it is:

CLOG’S REVIEW OF ROBOT HEROES

NAME: Optimus Prime vs Ravage; Mirage vs Starscream; Rodimus vs Insecticon (Shrapnel); Grimlock vs Shockwave
ALLEGIANCE: Autobots and Decepticons
FUNCTION: Being goshdarn cute
MOTTO: "Take me home!"
PROFILE: ‘Powerful action heroes’. There doesn’t seem to be anything else except an exhortation to ‘collect them all’. Go read the ‘TF Babies’ Trilogy by Crazomatic to be found in the Fiction section of Creative. But you’ve done that already, yes?

So...I walked into TRU intending to buy new movie figures and became horribly distracted by the pretty, bright colours...


Robot Mode:

Having been suckered helplessly into purchasing, return home and remove figures from packaging. Do not attempt this in the shop with your teeth no matter how desperate you are to get at them - you will require scissors and some brute force. These things are packaged like some of the movie range and you have to cut along the bottom edge seal to get them out (mind the fingers!) to leave the box reasonably intact, although the sellotaped fold-over ends are easily split. The packaging, is worth noting, deliberately mimics that of the movie toys in the same way cuckoo eggs match their victims’.
The first impression is, simply, that these deforms are an insult to Geewunner sensibilities. But look closer. These are surprisingly accurate, disproportions aside. The helmets, weapons and personal livery are close to the original cartoon, barring the colour of the optics (but there are comic precedents to cover that) and the blue is far too deep (think Titaniums). They are excellently moulded and there is very little colour misapplication, even on small parts and detailing, but this may well vary with each figure. The metallic silver is awesomely well done. There is mis-moulding here and there, mainly rough dents, and my OP shows some intrusive lines in the pelvic area (why is it always the pelvic area?). The joints, such as they are, are firm; note that the legs are fixed in pose. Detail is good, but something has to give in figures of this size, so don’t expect mega-accuracy! There are wheels missing from OP, who has only four on his lower legs, and Rodimus and Mirage, who have only two. Additionally, Mirage has perforce lost his ‘Citanes’ reference, which has been replaced on both arms with an Autobrand. The proportions are quite childlike and their bootees are sweetly outsized, reminiscent of the lower legs of their real toy forms. Ironically, the heads are in proportion with the bodies. Oh, and the faces of those who have faces bear somewhat inane grins, especially Rodimus, who may be about to fall on his skidplate given that pose. Ravage is the major disappointment of the set as he is fixed in the sitting position and his tail is a mere slip of black plastic. The only articulation is his head, but, sadly, his jaw is set forever in an open position. I can appreciate why all this has to be so, but it is a bit of a let-down. Other minor gripes are the quite common sigil-not-upside-down on Starscream’s 'iddle wings and Shockwave is slightly too plump in comparison with the others.

Alternate mode:

Um. These little guys do not transform, so there is no alternate form. You can move their arms and/or heads about a bit, though...

Oh, c’mon! Loosen up. Give these a chance. They are not designed as toys per se, but display items. Think of them as a softer version of the 3” Titaniums, for which they are, in fact, a pretty good size match. Actually, they’re also a good size match for mini-Smurfs... And go enjoy the unintentional(?) package layout for OP and Ravage – it looks like the greatest Autobot of them all is teaching an enemy to sit with extreme prejudice.

Next wave are Ultra Magnus vs Megatron; Bumblebee vs Soundwave; Jazz vs Thundercracker; and what appears to be Energon Optimus Prime vs Unicron, who is having a paddy.

Transformation: 0 – obviously.

Durability: 8 – They seem well enough moulded of good, hard plastic. Simple joints, but these could be fatally popped if given to a destructive child or a crazed fan. Look out for Optimus’ stacks and Insecticon’s antennae, which can get caught in the packaging, and Grimlock’s sword (easily bent, but let’s not discuss that).

Cuteness: 10 – So cute even people who don’t know snuff about TFs go ‘aaahhh’. I am informed (test group – people who work with and put up with me) that Ravage is possibly the cutest, followed by Shockwave. Go figure that one out for yourself.

Price: 5 – GBP4.99. Like Little Bear’s chair, porridge and bed, just right.

Overall: 7 – Goshdarn cuteness aside, these are not Revoltech or MegaSCF, but they out-do MyClone. It is possible to wuv them. Altogether now – ‘aaahhh’.*

*NB. Or, indeed ‘aarrgh!’, as the case might be.
 
 
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