Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Transformers - E-Hobby - Silver Chromed Bluestreak

The above figure is the 2003 Exclusive Silver Chromed Bluestreak by E-Hobby. It was released as the exclusive counterpart of the Takara Book Cover series "Prowl" together with the E-Hobby exclusive "Gold Jazz". Bluestreak was never released as a normal issued figure by Takara due to this. You can read more about the origin of this figure Here.

Once again... this figure is very much like the gold plated E-Hobby exclusive Jazz. definitely not a figure to be played with. I'm not a big fan of fully chromed figure, so in many ways.. owning this figure is pretty much just an additional figure for collection sake. Definitely only for hardcore completist and not for the every day run of the mill collectors... if u can find it and afford it.. get it just for the fun of it, but if u can't... it's not a big lost :)

I much prefer my exclusives to be either all black in color or crystal version. When i say crystal..i mean clear/transparent colored figures. The E-Hobby crystal Hotrod is an example of such a figure :)


Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Transformers G1 - Bluestreak aka Silverstreak

Three Autobots Brothers by Iaconcity

Ok, before i even start on my quasi review of this toy, judging from the amount of pics u see here, u already know that it's gonna be a doozie LOL. Oddly enough, Bluestreak is the least fav of the 3 brothers mold, i'm guessing it's got a lot to do with it's rather uninteresting paint job... yet, he is the original mold that pretty much gave birth to his other two more popular modified brethren.

Original Diaclone, Repainted and Modified Bluestreak Molds

Above are the 3 Bluestreak variant colors known with the "Blue" Bluestreak being the original Diaclone color. It was first issued in Blue, then in the black hooded "Anime Accurate" version, then retooled/modified into the "Racing Type" aka Smokescreen's mold and "Police Type" aka Prowl's mold. This mold was even available in both gold and silver version as prize campaign cars. There was even a Mexican version of Bluestreak that's straight off muted Grey in color.

The result of the three available Fairlady Z vehicle mold ( Original and Retooled ) resulted in the creation of the G1 three Autobot brothers - Bluestreak, Prowl and Smokescreen.

Diaclone "Blue" Bluestreak

The pic above is the very elusive original Diaclone "Blue" Bluestreak and also the most expensive version among the three variant versions as seen in the first pic above. It is also the most sought after bcoz there was a slight confusion when it was first released officially as a "Transformer" toy under the name "Bluestreak". It's color scheme image was actually used as the box art for the original release of Bluestreak's toy and the image of this blue Diaclone toy was used in the transformation instruction sheet as seen below. Up till now, it is the hardest version to find and most the most expensive version of this mold to date. Needless to say, this is one of the two existing colors out there that i have not been able to get, regardless of it being an original or a reissue. The other being, the gold Bluestreak.

G1 "Anime Accurate - 2002 Exclusive" Bluestreak

The black hooded "Anime Accurate" Bluestreak was also never released as an original G1 toy. oddly enough, this is the one color scheme that's identical to the anime version of Bluestreak. This was only available as a Diaclone repaint and as a 2002 exclusive. I took the chance to grab this piece when it came out becoz.. frankly speaking... though i claim to hate repaints in the past... I'm all for it as long as it's a good repainted figure LOL!!!

G1 Original- Hasbro Commemorative Series "Silver/Grey" Bluestreak

The original G1 issued toy version of Bluestreak is silver in color. As mentioned earlier on, this is the least fav of the 3, character and color/mold wise. The fact that it came with a Diaclone version toy pic in it's original transformation instruction sheet doesn't help boost it's popularity of the toy either. Instead everyone preferred the blue version.

I got this Hasbro's Commemorative Series version of Bluestreak aka "Silverstreak" because Takara did not reissue Bluestreak under the Book Cover Series. Takara only reissued the black hooded Bluestreak as an exclusive. The most prominent difference between the two version are

  • Takara's version is named "Streak" and the original "Fairlady Z" license plate is now replaced with "STREAK" instead.
  • Takara's version literally replicate everything down to the chrome weapons, missiles and spring loaded twin shoulder rocket launchers.
  • Hasbro's version have changed it's name to "Silverstreak" probably due to copyright complications. The license plate sticker is also changed to the word "STREAK".
  • Hasbro's version now have black plastic weapons. missiles and non spring loaded twin shoulder rocket launchers.
The silver Bluestreak u see above is actually the Hasbro Commemorative Series version using extra chrome weapons belonging to this mold. I really didn't want to get this piece in the first place because i've already got the anime accurate version. But decided to get it just because it is the same color scheme as the original G1 issued figure.

I guess those who didn't manage to get the exclusive black hooded version would have to settle for this one reissued by Hasbro. But it's definitely a bitter sweet experience getting this piece because it comes with black weapons, missiles and non spring loaded shoulder rocket launcher and it's retailing for almost the same price as the normal Takara Book Cover Series reissued figures of similar mold eg. Prowl and Smokescreen.

2003 E-Hobby "Silver Chrome" Bluestreak

2003 E-Hobby "Silver Chrome" Bluestreak was offered as an E-Hobby exclusive paired with "Gold" Jazz when Jazz and Prowl was reissued under the Book Cover Series. The original silver chrome Bluestreak was first issued in both gold and silver as prized campaign cars. Read Here for more info.

Phew... that's a real mouthful doing this quasi toy review of Bluestreak. How is it that i ended up with 3 out of 5 versions of Bluestreak variants out there. When i never got him as a kid. I manage to get a rather beat up Bluestreak back in 2001. It was missing both it's hood and rear windows. It pretty much looked like a convertible LOL. I have no idea where i've chucked that figure since i've got a few minty fresh ones with me now LOL

War Within Bluestreak by Iaconcity

Above is a CGI rendition of War Within Bluestreak done by Iaconcity... very sweet figure to have as a toy if it's ever being made.. don't u think? :p


Transformers G1 - Smokescreen

Three Autobots Brother by Iaconcity

Autobot Smokescreen's mold is modified from the original Diaclone "Fairlady Z" Mold aka "Bluestreak". This particular mold is usually refered to as "fairlady Z - Racing Type".

Toywise, i must day it is the most attractive of the 3 brothers.. plainly bcoz of it's race car modified look and the color is very bright and eye catching too. I never got Smokescreen as a kid, I'm guessing it's either i am broke or the fact that the trauma i suffered from the whole "Prowl" ordeal must have something to do with it. But to be honest.. i think it's more probable that i was BROKE!!! LOL.

So when the chance to get all 3 of the 3 brother presents itself in the 2002 reissue Book Cover Series, I went all out on em. To date, Prowl and Smokescreen is still tthe 2 more sought after figures. Prowl for it's more prominent role in the G1 animation and Smokescreen for it's sweet mold.

Character wise, according to my memory, his two most prominent role was in the G1 episode - "The Gambler" where the enigmatic Autobot bounty hunter "Defcon" made it's debut as well as the episode - "Trans-Europe Express". His favorite move when in vehicle mode is creating a concealing cloud of smoke from his exhaust... hence the character's name - "Smokescreen"!!!

Can't say i've got much to say about this toy aside from the fact that it's a sweet looking figure and with the recent re-imagination of the TF-Classics/Universe 2.0 and Henkei series... i'm very looking forward to see a very super posable "Smokescreen' toy. Judging from pics of both Prowl and Bluestreak... i can't wait to see how sweet Smokescreen would look in it's updated toy mold :p


Monday, July 7, 2008

Transformers G1 - Prowl

Original Three Autobots Brothers by Iaconcity

Prowl is arguably the most popular in terms of his character in the G1 season 1 and 2 series as well as a toy for both collectors and fans. His mold is a repainted and slightly modified version of the original "Fairlady Z" mold which was the original Diaclone and much sought after blue colored "Bluestreak". I will go into details of the multitude of variants that comes from this mold in my later posts. Prowl himself have had three known Mexican versions of this toy. But the Mexican versions seems to be made of cheaper plastics. Talk about double standards LOL!!! A testament of Prowl's popularity is apparent in the multitude of times this name was used in the various Transformers series ranging from "Beast Wars" to the very recent "Transformers Animated"

Bluestreak, Prowl and Smokescreen have often been regarded as the "Three Autobot Brother" by fans. But as to whether or not they are truly related... I am not sure at all, as it was never officially stated nor was it stated in their individual tech spec. I guess they were called that plainly becoz they look very similar to each other. But if that was so.. wouldn't that make Sideswipe and Red Alert twins instead of Sideswipe and Sunstreaker? :P

Prowl's role in the G1 series throughout season 1 and 2 are fairly frequent but nothing major. But somehow, he seems to be the favorite among the "So Called" 3 brothers. Maybe it's becoz of his very smart looking paint job of black and white. One can never go wrong with the classic black and white color combo. So i guess he's the fav among the 3 partially had something to do with his color scheme, as well as his character in the show.

Prowl's Uninspiring Death

So ok.... i have already established that i like Prowl's Character and toy and if i were to elaborate on it anymore i am sure u guys will shoot me with Prowl's Acid Pellets gun LOL. So u can just imagine my horror when i watched the 1986 TF- Animated Movie where Prowl was killed off with but a single shot by the Constructicon "Scrapper"!!!

Ok Toy wise, prowl have got a much deeper personal memory to me than Bluestreak and Smokescreen. It is so, bcoz Prowl was the only toy of the same mold i ever owned as a kid. Why am i so confident about that? Well... it's related to a rather sad story, at least for me LOL.

I remember buying prowl way back in probably around 1984 or 85. I got him by saving up my daily school allowance of 3 bucks. Which i am guessing would have taken me at least 1 1/2 months time to gather as i do not get any allowance at all on weekends. Anyhow, when i've finally gone and bought the toy. I had to rip the box apart to get to the toy and bolted back to my mum's vegetable stall. If u've read about how i got my 1st TF toy aka Red Alert... that's where i got Prowl as well :P

Ok to cut a long story short... i stuff Prowl into pants pocket and hid it from my parents. bcoz back then, we were lucky to even have food on the table as my mum had to work really hard in the veggie market, so buying toys is definitely out of the question. So when ever my parents or my brothers and sisters asked me where i got a certain toy i am playing with, i would have to lie about it saying that it was given to me by my rich friend.. Ssshhyyyeeaahhh RITE!!! Like there are so many good hearted rich kid around LOL!!!

Ok, then come the sad part of my story with Prowl. Ever since i've bought him, i've always tried to kept him from my parents and siblings detection. I bring it along with me to school in my school bag. Now, i must first and foremost say that i am a horrible student in school as i simply do not have the ability to pay much attention to what the teachers teach in class. I suspect that i suffer from a mild case of A.D.D - "Attention Deficit Disorder" back then LOL. I was always more "Street Smart" than "Book Smart".

Anyhow, one evening while i was helping my mum close down the veggie stall, my dad who was waiting in the car for us, went through my school bag and found my "Prowl" toy and my badly scrounged up and hidden test papers with failing grades on em .. ECKS!!!

When i got into the car after helping my mum close up shop. The first thing i got was an ear full from my dad about my test paper grades and where on earth i got the money to buy toys that he knows we most certainly cannot afford. When we finally reached home, the first thing my dad did was took away my newly acquired Prowl toy along with a few other mundane toys and told me that i would only get it back if my grades improved. Heck.. that would pretty much means i will never ever see my toy Prowl ever again LOL. True enough, i never got to see him again until around 1987 when we moved to a new house. I stumbled upon it while helping my dad pack. But it was already broken due to the fact that this particular toy mold have got highly fragile roof and rear windows.

I was finally reunited with a minty fresh toy of prowl, thanks to Takara's Book Cover series in 2002!!!

War Within Prowl by Iaconcity

Above is a really cool CGI version of Prowl's Cybertronian mode beautifully done by Iaconcity. It is inspired by Don Figueroa's comic book "Transformers - The War Within" series.

TRU Exclusive War Within Prowl

A War Within Prowl toy paired with War Within "Grimlock" would be available to us under the now defunct 6" transformable Titanium series as a TRU Exclusive in September 2008 - Read Here

I would most definitely love to get my hands on both these babies if they were made available here locally. Ok that's all for now... Hope u guys enjoyed this posting :P


Transformers G1 - Bluestreak/ Prowl/ Smokescreen Mold

G1 Three Autobot Brothers by Iaconcity

As always, i would always start of a review of a group shot of figures sharing similar molds. This time around it's a group shot of all the "Three Autobot Brothers" - "Bluestreak", "Prowl" and "Smokescreen" aka "Fairlady Z" vehicle mold. Other modification of this mold include a police car mold as well as a racing type mold.

The original Three Autobot Brothers -
Bluestreak, Prowl and Smokescreen

The three brothers are arguably my most favorite of the G1 mold..i know, i know LOL..i have said that before. But i really like this mold. Prowl however is the more popular of the 3 brothers in the G1 season 1 and 2 series, followed by Smokescreen and last but not least, Bluestreak.

Above are pics of my Bluestreak, Prowl, Smokescreen and their variant repainted versions. The figures are - Positioned based on their robot mode -

Upper Left - Takara Book Cover Series, Anime accurate - Bluestreak.
Lower left - Takara Book Cover Series - Prowl.
Middle - Takara Silver chromed E-Hobby Exclusive - Bluestreak.
Upper Right - Hasbro Commemorative Series - Silverstreak.
Lower Right - Takara Book Cover Series - Smokescreen.

As always.. enjoy the pics for now.. I will do an individual review of what these figures meant to me at a personal level and probably talk about the different variations of them out there.


Sunday, July 6, 2008

Transformers G1 - Targetmaster Stepper.

This here is a repaint and retooled mold of Autobot Jazz named "Stepper". It was once upon a time said to be one of the most sought after TF toy by fans and collectors. He was released back in 1987 in Japan as a Japan only exclusive Targetmaster partnered with Cyclonus's Targetmaster Nightstick. For some reason, Takara never released Cyclonus and Scourge as Targetmasters figure hence both their Targetmasters are given to "Stepper" and "Artfire" or "Autofire" a Japanese mispronunciation. Artfire is a retooled and repainted version of Inferno and he is partnered with Scourge's Targetmaster - Fracas. The picture above is the original packaging of the 1987 release of Stepper and according to a price guide book, this figure is once priced at USD $1000 Buckeroos!!!

So when the Takara book cover series announced it's release, i was overjoyed with glee and ordered 5 pieces of this very sought after baby.. or so i thought LOL!!! Apparently, this really cool figure is not known to most of the "So Called" local TF collectors and fans and is now perhaps one is the least sought after TF toy from the entire book cover series. Maybe the lack of an animated version of them might have caused this reverse effect from it's original release.

But no matter what it is with the masses... to me, this is still a gem to have in my collection no matter what. He is a sad example of how a once unobtainable figure is not appreciated when it is finally being made obtainable to every Tom, Dick and Harry. Imagine how hard it used to be to obtained such a piece back in 1987!!! There is no way for anyone around the world to know of it's release unless u r Japanese or u r a frequent visitor to Japan. That's the Pros and Cons of having the internet :P

Like all things Takara, Stepper comes with chrome parts and weapons. It's really a double edge sword when it comes to chrome parts. For one... it's very nostalgic to see chrome or die-cast parts for a toy as toys nowadays are majority made of 100% plastic, Only high end toys are made of die-cast and would probably cost u a pretty penny to obtain them. The cons however with a die-cast toy or toys with chrome parts and weapons is storing them properly so that it won't get scuffled or tarnished in time. Especially when u r not a "Re-Boxer" LOL... it's a personal term for someone who actually put his/her toys back into it's original packaging after he/she had taken it out to play or admire. But we all know that toy collectors never play with their toy collection, so the concept of it being a toy is somewhat moot LOL.

The above tech spec of Steeper is translated from it's Japanese text by this site. Here a different name is given to Stepper's Targetmaster, Instead of using the name Nightstick, it is named "Flashfire" a former Nebulan police sniper, which would make sense since he's a Targetmaster after all. Ricochet's tech spec is obtained from the same site as well.

Then in 2004, Hasbro released their version of Stepper naming him "Ricochet" in their Commemorative Series. Since i've already got 5 pieces of Stepper in my collection, i wasn't really very keen in getting Ricochet just becoz it was released under a different name and packaging.

The decision no to get it was a good one indeed as Hasbro really did a crappy job by first not giving it gold chromed weapons like that of Stepper's. To further lessened the appeal of Ricochet is the fact that it's got really long and awkward looking missiles. I mean... what gives?? Is Ricochet compensating for something else with really long missiles?? LOL

To wrap up this very technical review of Stepper, without much personal memories of owning this toy back in the 80's in the first place. I would recommend those of you out there who is actually thinking of owning this piece to go for the takara version aka Stepper and just completely ignore Hasbro's Ricochet. In terms of value for money.. Takara got chrome parts, better packaging and comes with a collectors card of the figure. Hasbro's packaging is made up of thin flimsy cardboard and the toy has chromeless weapons and ridiculously unsightly long missiles!!! LOL


Transformers - E-Hobby - Gold Jazz

E-Hobby Gold Jazz is the very first set of 2 exclusive figures in 2002 that was released under the E-Hobby banner which is normally a repainted version of the G1 Transformers toys, usually in the pre-Transformers "Diaclone" line colors. But since Jazz does not have a Diaclone variant color, he was released in gold instead. A pattern i later realized that Japanese love making all gold exclusive figures. Frankly speaking, i'm not a big fan of the gold figures. it feels like a frickin transformable Oscar statue LOL

All in all, i got nothing much to say about this figure that i have not said in my earlier post about the original G1 jazz. The figure does tarnish quite easily once it's taken out of it's box, so for those of u who have a penchant for fully gold figures, make sure it's kept back in the box after u've fiddled with it.

Transformers - Golden Lagoon

This particular paint job kinda reminds me of the G1 season 2 episode "Golden Lagoon" where "Beachcomber" have stumbled into a concealed paradise like place where "Electrum" was found. it is a lazer proof like substance that enables one to become invulnerable once being coated in it. the Decepticons later found the Electrum and coat themselves in it and even manage to defeat Omega Supreme with the help of it. Of course, the Autobots later found out the source of the Decepticons invulnerability thanks to "Powerglide's" spying and later coat themselves in the substance as well. Realizing that they have lost the advantage of invulnerability, the Decepticons destroyed the golden lagoon which pretty much destroyed the paradise like forest where the pool of Electrum was found in the first place.

All in all.. this figure is a nice addition to any hardcore G1 Transformers completist. If u r not a completist i would not recommend u to get it :)


Saturday, July 5, 2008

Transformers G1 - Jazz.

CGI Cybertronian Mode Jazz by Iaconcity

G1 Autobot Jazz aka Meister is among the few transformers that appeared in the 1984 Transformers animated series that appeared to us in his original Cybertronian mode. He was pretty much the "African American" among the other Autobots based on his accent, voiced by the voice actor "Scatman Crothers" who was decease in 1986. Jazz is one of the very few season 1 and 2 Autobots who survived the ridiculous onslaught of the D-Cons who basically killed of many season 1 and 2 A-Bots with but a single shot!!! He still makes occasional appearances in season 3 but he no longer plays any important role throughout the third season.

CGI Jazz by Iaconcity

Autobot Jazz's toy mold is also taken from Takara's "Diaclone" and "Microman" line> Jazz is also one of the few who does not come with a variant repaint version of him from the respective pre-Transformers line. Aside from it's original first release back in 1984, jazz was reissued In Europe in 1990 and 1991 in the Transformers Classics line. It was later retooled for the G2 line with a ridiculously huge rocket launcher. Takara took the same mold and retooled it as a new Targetmaster figure "Stepper" in 1987, partnering him with "Nightstick" who was originally Cyclonus's Targetmaster partner. I will talk more about Stepper when i do a review about him in my upcoming posts. Jazz was later reissued in 2002 under the book cover reissues by Takara.

Toywise, Jazz is a super cool figure that transforms into a Porsche 935. I too remember owning him when i was a kid, and if u've read my earlier entries..i gave away all of my TF's back in the early 90's. Anyhow.. my first reunion with a Jazz figure was when i was in college back in 1999. While visiting my college mate's boyfriend's house, I noticed that he's got a pretty good condition Jazz displayed on top of his T.V. set. I literally begged him to sell it to me, and after some price haggling.. i manage to get it for RM100. it was complete with rocket launcher and gun but the figure was slightly discolored due to the fact that it's a white colored toy and was subjected to direct florecent light and the previous owner is a smoker!!!

Anyhow, the chance to own a brand new Jazz figure finally came when Takara released the book cover series back in 2002. But what's odd about this particular mold was that it suffered from a severe case of "Loose Joint Syndrome". I was wondering what caused it to be so, until i finally got the E-Hobby gold exclusive figure of Jazz. It was clear that both figure shared the same mold but the mold had to be catered for the gold E-Hobby Jazz as it was fully covered in gold paint. The paint obviously is thicker in texture compared to normal paint hence the normal issued Jazz is uber loose. Come 2008, Jazz is once again reissued under the Encore line but this time around..it's head mold is supposedly taken from a variant Jazz head mold. Not quite sure which one as i remember reading it somewhere before the release of the Encore Jazz reissue which was released in March 2008.

Jazz have made multiple reincarnations throughout the years, it's most recent reincarnation was in the 2007 Transformers live action movie and now in the new Transformers animation aptly entitled "Transformers Animated". This time around Jazz is an Autobot elite guard who is also a very cool cyber ninja. He shares the same mannerism and love for earth's culture like G1 Jazz and so is his voice actor whose voice is reminiscence of Scatman Crothers. His facial feature this time around better reflects his African American accent. But ironically, although he looks African American... he is still majority white in color.. go figure LOL


Transformers - G1 - Jazz/ Gold jazz/ TM Stepper Mold.

CGI Jazz by Iaconcity

G1 jazz is perhaps one of the most beloved TF characters for Season 1 and 2 of the US animated series. because of his popularity among fans..it was only fitting that he was the first TF to be reissued in the Takara book cover series.

Depicted above are the various versions of G1 Jazz figure. The Gold jazz was an E-Hobby exclusive while the black Jazz is "Stepper", a figure that was once only exclusively available in Japan as a Targetmaster.

I'll go into further details of these 3 Jazz's mold figs in my next few postings. As for now... just enjoy the pics of em together :P


Transformers - E-Hobby - Road/Load Hauler

Road/Load Hauler is the product of the multitude of color mistakes that's very apparent in the G1 animated series. he first made his appearance in the three part episode "More Than meets the Eye", where Cliffjumper called out to a green colored "Grapple" lookalike and called him Hauler instead of Grapple.

Road/Load Hauler was released as an E-Hobby exclusive back in 2003 along with the release of the non exclusive reissue of Inferno and Starscream. It is basically a g1 Grapple figure in a very Constructicon-esque lime green color. If anything at all.. this figure is a nice addition to any hard core TF fan who is all too happy to own this figure even though it is the product of mistaken color and crappy QC in the 80's G1 animation.

I for one am not complaining about having him in my collection, bcoz as i have mentioned before. This is one of my more faborite G1 TF toy mold. Back in 2003, E-Hobby figures are pretty much very hard to obtain as toy shops are reluctant to bring in exclusive figures that are generally repaints of the original issues and cost double the price of the normal issues. But i was lucky to be able to order it here locally, but of course, i have to pay a pretty penny for owning this E-Hobby exclusive figure :)


Transformers G1 - Inferno

CGI Inferno and Skids by Iaconcity

G1 Inferno shares a similar mold with Grapple minor retooling that distinguish them apart in vehicle mode. Inferno being a fire truck while Grapple is a construction vehicle. Unlike most of the Takara "Diaclone" and Microman" line, Inferno does not come with a repainted version of himself.

Inferno was first reissued in the G2 series which comes with a water shooting action kibble which in my opinion doesn't do much for me. But guess what.. i have been hunting for the G2 version for the past 5 yrs heheheh :p Takara actually did a somewhat off beat repaint and rettoled version of Inferno as a Targetmaster named "Artfire". it was released together with the repainted n retooled version of g1 jazz as Stepper. These 2 Japan only exclusives Targetmasters were suppose to replace the lack of both Cyclonus and Scourge as Targetmasters, hence both the Targetmasters were given to both Artfire and Stepper instead.

Then in 2001, both Inerno and Grapple were released as exclusives as a set of two. i was unable to obtain that set as it was very hard and expensive to obtain, although i did manage to obtain other sets instead. Then comes the Takara book cover reissues where only Inferno made the cut. He was released together with anime accurate Starscream. because grapple didn't quite make the cut, an E-Hobby repaint of Grapple was released instead named - Road/Load Hauler".

Character wise, Inferno couldn't be more different that that of Grapple. Inferno is more of an action junkie who prefer to be in the heat of things and is somewhat of a hot head while his partner,"Red Alert" is his complete opposite as seen in the G1 anime episode "Auto berserk". he even have a girlfriend back in Cybertron named "Firestar" featured in the G1 anime episode "The Search for Alpha Trion".

Toy wise... the Takara reissued Inferno is far sturdier than the Hasbro Commemorative series reissue of Grapple. Everything worked just like the original vintage Inferno. Actually... i was expecting Takara to reissue "Art Fire' when they announced the reissue of Inferno in the book cover series. But since "Stepper" was released as a non exclusive figure... i guess i was mistaken for expecting an Art Fire figure to be issued as an exclusive. Oh well.. maybe Art Fire will finally get to see the light of day when TakaraTomy reissue it again in the Encore series :P


Transformers G1 - Grapple

CGI Grapple and Hoist by Iaconcity

G1 Autobot Grapple like all season 1 and 2 Transformers toy mold, most of them are originally from a line of transforming toys from Takara Japan known as the "Diaclone" and "Microman" series. Grapple's mold is one of the few rare mold that does not have a repainted paint job, with the exception of a retooled Inferno mold.

Grapple is often seen together with Hoist in the US G1 animated series. Their love for constructing and building got them into trouble in the G1 episode "The master Builders". The Constructicons trick Grapple and Hoist with claims of having left Megatron. They construct a tower Grapple thought up to absorb solar energy, which Optimus Prime was against the idea of building it for fear of The Decepticons getting their hands on it. However they were betrayed by the Constructicons and it was up to the other Autobots to save the day.

Grapple's mold is one of my most favorite G1 mold, although it is somewhat cumbersome and simplistic. if my memory serves me well..i remember having both Grapple and Inferno as a kid. I got reunited with Grapple once more back in 2001 when i got him along with a whole box of other vintage TF for a real steal hehehe. Unfortunately, that figure's chrome is somewhat scuffed, so i have decided to take pics of the Hasbro's Commemorative series Grapple instead.

Takara never did reissued Grapple in the book cover series, but it was reissued once as an exclusive set of 2 figures together with Inferno back in 2001. Only Inferno was reissued by Takara in the book cover series paired with anime accurate Starscream.

Upon looking at both vintage and the newly released Hasbro's Commemorative series Grapple, one would not be able to tell much difference between the two based on sight alone. But the moment u hold up both figures... there's a distinct difference between the two. For one, the die-cast part used in the commemorative series felt more like sheet metal. it was very thin and light, whereas the vintage Grapple's die-cast part is much more sturdier n heavier.

Another distinct difference with the Hasbro Commemorative series reissue is that both hands/fist port are no longer spring loaded. The trigger that was suppose to create a spring loaded shooting action is now just there for cosmetic G1 authentic purposes. it doesn't work at all!!!

Can't really recall any specific fond memories of grapple nor can i remember how i manage to obtain it as a kid... but what the heck, why bother to crack my head trying to remember how i first got it as a kid when i have him with me now LOL!!!


Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Transformers G1 - Grapple / Inferno / Load Hauler Mold

Transformers Autobot Commercial

Greetings guys.. it's been two months since i've posted anything new here, so let me start everything off again by first introducing all of u guys to yet another set of same mold but different characters TF Toy. presenting.. G1 Grapple, Inferno and E-Hoby Road/Load Hauler.

G1 Grapple, Inferno and E-Hobby Road/Load Hauler

G1 Grapple and Inferno might have shared a similar mold, but they could not have been more different character wise. Road/Load Hauler is a product of the ever famous color mistakes of the G1 animation's quality control. What better way to legitimized the repaint of a toy and make it an exclusive than to blame it all on QC LOL!!!

OK.. i will do a more detail review on these figs individually in the next few post. For the meantime.. enjoy them in a trio shot!!!