Another day, another box of Transformers Animated. Believe it or not, I cannot wait until this is over. When you're buying online - especially cheap small things like a loose Animated bot here or there - you don't realise how quickly it adds up in terms of volume, and knowing that every day a box arrives with more stuff, it's getting a little hard to breathe around here. Also this first pic is a little misleading, not all of those toys are mine, or new!
|Japanese exclusive voyager Animated Blackout|
|Hasbro one never got released, but samples do exist|
|Bloody gorgeous innit?|
|Blackout taking off in a storm!|
|And now without knocking the camera accidentally..|
Voyager Blackout is a big deal, he wasn't released anywhere except Japan despite a Hasbro version reaching production-ready stage. His enormously brief appearance as part of Team Char warranted a toy, apparently, in no small part aided by his popularity in Michael Bay's 2007 Transformers big screen flick. The toy is not huge in either mode, but just perfect. The transformation is simpler than some deluxes, but satisfying and fun. Accessories include a massive disc launcher, but he also has guns and missiles attached. Posability is nice but he has no waist or neck articulation, he's 100% nailed the aesthetic of Animated and for the amazing price I got him for in a lot of loose Japanese Animated TFs, I don't have to wax lyrical in order to justify paying what sellers ask for this toy now. He is genuinely an excellent transformer with a very funny grimace on his face. I'm tremendously happy to add Blackout to the ranks.
The Animated Dinobots are toys I skipped when I saw them in shops, but I liked them in the cartoon. Snarl (who is really a Slag/Snarl hybrid), Grimlock and Swoop are actually very very good toys, Grimlock being the absolute standout here. One of the best voyager class figures I've ever owned, and 100% the best non-vehicle voyager I've ever owned. These are Takara Tomy versions so the shiny gold paint is lighter than Hasbro's, the Autobot logos are red with white background and Snarl does not have clear red horns or nose. Swoop has shiny outer wings, but the section attached to his back is not shiny, one of the many TakTomy Animated TFs whose shiny paint job is inconsistent and causes weird contrasts with their lack of uniformity. I'll say it again, Grimlock is epic, superb transformation, posability and hugely reminiscent of his old self, yet dripping with Animated style and character. What a triumph, I actually had two of them and struggled to let the second one go.
I've had the purple Target exclusive "True Colours" voyager Animated Shockwave for over a month now, but the new addition is the Takara Tomy grey Shockwave, or Longarm Prime as I'll be utlising him as. Four 'distinct' modes are available as both Longarm and Shockwave consist of a robot mode and a sort of tank/crane mode too. There is also the neat changeable faction symbol on the chest. Strangely, although the grey Shockwave is Takara Tomy (recognisable from coloured faction symbol on chest), its cannon is Hasbro (recognisable by Decepticon symbol on barrel). This is a very good mould that can be ruined by looseness, mercifully the grey version I got is tight so it's allowing me to really enjoy the toy more than the slightly floppy purple specimen. The light piping is great on this figure too, very eerie.
Not a lot of people like Wreck Gar, character wise or toy wise from G1. The Animated version was plenty annoying in the show too but at least he was voiced by Weird Al Yankovic and said "I am Wreck Gar and I dare to be stupid" (I swear Dan, if you correct the quote for me...). The Hasbro version of the toy I had was a pleasant surprise, great stability and two pretty fun modes. The Takara version, however, is gorgeous. No grey plastic expanses with swirly moulding, but instead light silver paint application on the trailer and grill, brighter red paint on the lights, darker grey plastic on the arms and bright red paint on the shoulders and lift parts. He looks brilliant in these colours with the extra finish, and when you can bring out the best features of a toy and mould with the right amount of paint and correct colours, it's just a shame when other releases don't get the same treatment. TT Wreck Gar is superb, no question.
Two more pictures of me messing about with the Mech iDeas Bluster (Animated Not-Huffer) and Trench (Animated Not-Pipes) alongside other more recognisable Transformers figures, I really should send those two back soon. They'll be dangling by their legs from leader Bulkhead if they're here any longer.
Wonder which of the 13 packages still in transit I can look forward to/stare in horror at tomorrow.
All the bestMaz