Transformers Generation

If the past week is anything to go by I believe I’ve sufficiently recovered enough from the savage gut-punch to the childhood that was the Michael Bay “Transformers” movies to once again indulge my passion for all things Cybertronian. But before I show you some examples of my most recent indulgences, let me explain how this whole thing all started.

When I was 8 my family owned a little toy van that changed, at the flick of a switch, into a helicopter. Fisher Price made it (possibly. I’ve never been able to find anything like it online) but for a little while I was engrossed by it. It was just the coolest thing I had ever seen.

Then, one fateful day, I happened to browse one of my Mum’s catalogues and found something that changed my world forever. A mostly black F15 jet that changed…into a ROBOT!  It’s quite astonishing to me now how such a tiny little moment could grow, acorn to oak, into an obsession that has lasted for 27 years but that character, the magnificent, the beautiful, the wondrous Skywarp, is to blame for it all.

Fast forward to 2011 and Transformers as a franchise has NEVER gone away in all that time. It’s NOT retro. Toys have been produced nearly continuously since 1984 and as I write this parent company Hasbro are preparing to air the 15th cartoon series based on their exploits: Transformers Prime, this one a CGI extravaganza based heavily – thought not completely – on the recent films.

Meanwhile, in the land of toys, Hasbro have finally realised the worth in keeping their old fans appeased and have launched headlong into a third year of a toy range that seemingly aims to provide modern updates of all those beloved first generation (G1) characters.

Enter, the Generations and Reveal The Shield Toylines. Successors to the ‘Universe’ and ‘Classics’ toy ranges from 2007-2009, some of this year’s releases have been absolutely spectacular. Finding them last week was a revelatory moment for me, when I realised that I had the chance to practically re-create my old toy collection (long since given away to my brothers) in a funky modern style. Neo-G1! Here’s the chap who caught my eye:

Magnificent, isn’t he? He’s called Thunderwing. He’s an evil Decepticon, and anyone who knows the staggering comic history of that character (Read the wiki!) knows how thrilling is it to be given a version that really does him justice. Matrix Quest, bitches! WE ARE THUNDERWING! Here’s a comparison of him with the original, and frankly hideous, 80‘s version:

That’s the beautiful thing about toy engineering 25 years on: so many more points of articulation (22 as opposed to, um, 2), better proportions in robot mode, much sleeker in jet mode…he’s simply fantastic. I fell in love at first sight (which has been happening a lot lately!) and bought him before I’d even realised my mouse hand had moved!

I must stress at this point that I’m not a proper Collector. I’m not interested in keeping them stored away for some imagined future profit. I rip those boxes right open to get at the juicy toy goodness inside. I don’t play with them either, if you’re wondering. They’re simply visual triggers for my immense and incredibly fertile imagination. Thunderwing has joined…two other characters upon the very desk I sit at now, a triumvirate of stunningly gorgeous evil eye-candy (one of which I’ll reveal in a subsequent post). Talking of which, here’s another character I’m expecting delivered by puffing postman very shortly…

MEGATRON! This is his ‘War for Cyberton’ appearance. A PC video-game-and-novel event that kick-started the next major reboot of the Transformers multiverse, of which the aforementioned Prime TV series is a part. This lovely figure is based on the 3D model created for the game, albeit a much whiter version of him. But in this case I’m willing to overlook that paint silliness for such a gloriously proportioned and detailed figure. And look at that Fusion Cannon! Would you mess with someone wearing that?! No, me neither!  Badass, is what I call that. BAD. ASS.

Kick it, Megs!

But WAIT! Stop the presses, folks! Today saw some news about the new toy line based on the Transformers Prime CGI show. Check out the NEW megatron…!

I nearly dribbled onto my shirt front when I saw this. Ol’ Megs is one of my favourite characters, and you can clearly see the design similarities between this version of him and the War for Cybertron version – the arm cannon, the angular head, etc. They’re actually the same character, just thousands of years apart, ‘Prime’ Megs being the modern day version. He’s…wonderful. I really hope and pray that photoshopped image (so shiny) lives up to the plastic version I’ll eventually own (oh yes. OH YES).

As far as introductions go, this is a good place to stop but there will be more revelations to come. I’ve got more figures on the way (some of the good guys as well as more bad). I’ll also delve more into the vast and incredible world of Transformers. Some of it will surprise you. More than Meets the Eye, remember? 😉

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