October 22, 2009

Revenge is best served sideways

Filed under: Transformers, collecting, comment — fairplaythings @ 1:20 am

Last night, I went out on what I thought was a vague mission to see what the Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen blue-ray steel book looked like. Pretty box really, but not pretty enough to make me want to own a Blue Ray DVD when (a) I don’t yet own a Blue Ray player and (b) I clearly didn’t care for the movie in the first place. I standing by my “no more than one copy” rule, and only then because there is the cool transforming Bumbleshell edition out there at Target in the United States.

That said, if anyone wants me to try and grab them a steel book edition, I’m happy to do so at cost + shipping. The package is $28, plus tax, plus shipping. Just leave me a note if you are interested.

Nemesis Crashing

Anyway, a stop into Toys ‘ R Us revealed the three pack “Gathering at the Nemesis” set featuring the voyager Megatron from the first movie, the Fallen and a vaguely G1 paint application Soundwave. And despite my feelings on the new movie, I might have been swayed enough to pick up the set at $74.99, except that I’d previously grabbed  the Fallen, the one figure in the set I was really keen on. Up until last night, the Fallen (for all the problems he introduced into the “plot” of the second movie) was the only on-screen Movie 2 figure in my collection aside from the deluxe Sideswipe procured as first editions at Botcon 2009, and bought well before I knew just how awful the film would turn out.

With respect to the other voyager figure on offer, I have the U.S. Best Buy tru-colour Voyager Megatron from the first film. So even though this Megatron is pretty close to screen accurate (at least much more so than the first release), I can’t really generate interest to put him on my shelf, particularly given that I turned down the Battle in the Box style gold version of the same Megatron versus Jazz two pack during my last Target order.

And Soundwave still looks terrible and undersized. Maybe if there is a leader class Soundwave, I’ll reconsider him. But not at that size.

Hole in the Sky

The toy line of course is causing me all kinds of mixed feelings, and I can’t really decide if I want to cut it out of my collection like a cancer or allow myself to pick and choose as much as I am inclined to do. Of course, given all the goodness that are the upcoming figures like Brakedown, Dirge and Bludgeon, among others, there is bound to be some TF2-labelled toys in the collection. And it’s true that I am resisting the likes of Deluxe Ravage and Devastator, to say nothing of Deluxe Mudflap and Skids, as well as those figures whom I already have in abundance in the same scale from the last film like Bumblebee and Prime.

But there is not a clear line, in which I can say I won’t buy anything, a situation made worse knowing that a portion of the profits go into Michael Bay’s pocket (although I don’t know if that agreement includes non-screen transformers.)

I am having big issues with the Legends scale figures, since I love this scale and have done as much as possible to gobble up the previous reiterations of this line. It feels like a big sucking black hole to leave out the TF2 figures and yet I cannot justify them at their regular price.

Unfortunately, I cannot resist the Fact Action Battlers. I expect to grab them all including the abominations that are Skids and Mudflap. That said, at $15.99, I’m going to try to pick them up on discount, although the Grindor repaint of Blackout almost came home last regardless of price.

The absence of TF2 Robot Heroes from my collection is a little easier to justify, not because I don’t love them because I absolutely do, but because the movie ones lack the fun that made their G1, BW, BM and even Movie 1 versions must haves in the collection. The hole bothers me, of course, but somehow not as much. The only set where I am waffling is the Battle of the Fallen set, and then only because the Fallen is so big and the Prime/Jetfire hybrid is well-done.

Gravity bots are definitely a no. I like the hot wheels-inspired RPMs but they are a lot of money. And they aren’t really transformers. Likewise the Robot Replicas, which despite my love of Action Masters, I avoided for the first film and will avoid for its sequel.

Compromise Bloody Compromise

As for the main line (so far), here is my list of yes, no and maybe (i.e., only if on sale), and what I have to date.

Basic: Brakedown, Dune Runner
Deluxe: Autobot Gears, Brawn, Breakaway, Dirge, Lockdown, Sideways, Smokescreen, Swerve, Thrust
Human Alliance: Barricade, Sideswipe
Voyager: Bludgeon, Long Haul (but basically because he looks so good in classic Construction green), Mindwipe
Leader: Starscream
Exclusives: The Fury of Fearswoop

Basic: Ejector, Scalpel
Deluxe: Skids, Wheelie, Blazemaster, Bumblebee, Cannon Bumblebee, Deep Desert Brawl, Interrogator Barricade, Mudflap, Ravage, Soundwave, Stalker Scorponok, Strike Mission Sideswipe, Tuner Mudflap
Voyager: Deep Desert Ratchet, Defender Optimus Prime, Demolisher, Ironhide, Megatron, Mixmaster, Optimus Prime, Stratosphere
Exclusives: “Burning” The Fallen, Gathering at the Nemesis
Leader: Devastator, Shadow Command Megatron

Basic: Dead End, Knock Out, Nightbeat, Ransack, Reverb, Rollbar, Scattershot, Sonar, Wideload<
Deluxe: Arcee, Armorhide, Ratchet, Skids+Mudflap, Chromia, Rampage
Human Alliance: Bumblebee, Skids
Voyager: Grindor, Starscream, Recon Ironhide
Exclusives: Superion, Super Tuner Throwdown (Blowpipe vs. Sideways)
Leader: Jetfire, Megatron, Optimus Prime

Basic: Depthchage, Dirt Boss
Deluxe: Dead End, Jolt, Sideswipe
Voyager: The Fallen,
Exclusives: Ramjet, Skywarp, Whirl + Bludgeon two pack, Straightaway Shootout

You notice two things on this list - Starscream and the Mudflap and Skids two-pack. On Starscream, even though the figure is just a repaint, the repainted symbols are really nice. But I think my solution will be to get the upcoming Leader scale version of the character which gives me a different scale but all the bells and whistles that are appealing about this look. Although I am a sucker for seekers.”

As for Mudflaps and Skids, despite my loathing of these characters, the ice cream truck idea was pretty neat. So I’m torn there. Maybe it’s a sales package only.

My wavering on toys seems to have taken me away from the conclusion of the trip last night, which, again, was to simply see the steel box of the Fallen in its native environment, the sale’s shelf at FutureShop. We then went next door to BestBuy where I remembered the real reason for the trip, which was to see the new Shout! Production of the original cartoon in all its 16 disc glory.

And lo, there it was, on sale at $99 and giving me hope that the GIJoe companion set would be similarly featured for the release of the Rise of Cobra.

The plan was to simply buy one for my nephew for Christmas and tuck it away until the holidays. Because I own all the Rhino Generation One DVDs (which I can’t really part with because they are signed by the likes of Michael Bell), a problem I don’t have with the Rhino incomplete GIJoe collection. And yet, the draw of special features and the oh-so-matrixy box and the price was too much and I surrendered.

Upon getting to the cash, I was surprised when the cashier paused me to run and get a special add-on. Yes, the Revenge of the Fallen promotional t-shirt came with each package, so I got a free shirt I’ll likely never wear. But still, it’s something, right?

So then we went home and I popped in the special features during my Halloween costume work, and it was all worth it. I can’t wait to see the scripts when I have time to load the DVDs into a computer.


  1. Hey dude, I could pick up the DVD for you if you like.

    Would you have any interest in splitting a (US) TRU Hoist/Mixmaster 2-pack? I have no interest in the Mixmaster. Recent forum stuff has possibly cast doubts as to whether Hoist will be released by himself.

    Comment by E — October 22, 2009 @ 6:42 am

  2. Oh yeah, apparently the Starscream from RotF is substantially different (it’s not just tattoos). It has hands instead of guns-for-hands. I think it’s a bit smaller too.

    Comment by E — October 22, 2009 @ 6:45 am

  3. For what it’s worth, Leader Prime is “Teh Awesomes”. Seriously. Plus he can of course stand in for the first movie.

    I suppose it also depends on your perspective on Bay Design. I don’t care for many of them a whole lot but I do like Prime’s design. He’s just very nicely athletic and strong.

    Comment by JoshMiller — October 22, 2009 @ 7:57 am

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