It arrived! It arrived! The best Transformers Club Freebie EVARRRRR!!
See, it's Hot Shot. In orange. Orange and blue. And white. These colors look gorgeous together. Orange and blue has always been a favorite color combination of mine, which is why Joyce has been in those colors since the beginning of time. Those colors look pretty good on Transformers, too, especially coupled with sheer white. It's a supremely attractive toy.
This is Dion's second toy. His first was a Japanese e-Hobby exclusive redeco of Wheelie, which I also own. Though that version was in yellow and a more saturated blue with cream instead of white, that was also a pretty attractive color scheme. I think the brighter orange/blue/white is better, between the two, but both color schemes work a similar color wheel magic, so they both occupy a similar happy spot in my brain.
Dion was one of Optimus Prime's work buddies before the war, when Prime's name was Orion Pax and they worked together in a shipping dock. When Megatron and his Decepticon goons encountered the dock early in the war, at first Orion and Dion were in awe of him. But, well, your mind tends to change when those guys reveal they're there kill you and steal your dock's stuff. Orion Pax survived to be rebuilt as Optimus Prime by Alpha Trion, but Dion had no such luck. The original story dropped all mention of Dion once he was shot, and he was presumed dead. The writer of the episode confirmed that Dion was just there to die and fuel Optimus Prime's desire to defeat evil, but, well...
You know fans and patterns. They love them! It's all very Aspergery. Well, Dion just had to be rebuilt into one of Optimus Prime's current buddies like Ironhide or Ultra Magnus. He just had to be! Just like how Cyclonus had to have been made from Skywarp! Patterns! And so Dion's biggest deal for the past 15 years of the online fandom was not who he was, but who he ended up being. This argument was a fool's errand because, you know, he wasn't ever supposed to be anybody and any attempt at an argument is grasping at stuff that just isn't there. So that went round and round and round...
But hey, turns out that Dion is... Dion. The Transformers Collectors' Club decided that Dion survived his ordeal and was rebuilt into a member of the Elite Guard. And this orange Hot Shot clone is what he looks like now. It's okay that he doesn't look anything like Dion did before the accident... it's not like Orion Pax looked terribly much like Optimus Prime! But the color scheme is maintained, and so it's easy to buy this orange and blue Hot Shot as Optimus Prime's old, previously-thought-dead pal.
It helps that Dion is covered in all sorts of paint. This is pretty radical for a Club exclusive, since their first freebie toy offering had a dab of paint here and there and the day was called. Dion is smothered in paint, mostly in service of making him look more like Dion's original color arrangement. I enjoy how much work seemingly went into the deco. Though it seems to hit a snag in vehicle mode. There's a bit of unpaintable plastic right at the front of Dion's car doors.
This is where a blue Autobot logo was placed. And since it's unpaintable there, that means there's a big orange chunk in the upper corner of the logo. It doesn't bother me as much as it does some people; my mind sort of automatically fills in that negative space. If they moved the symbol further back along the door away from the unpaintable patch, that would look worse to me. The symbol has to have room to have blue streamers behind it for the graphic to work, and moving it back would kinda create a worse eyesore.
The toy is as fun as Universe/Henkei! Hot Shot toy was, which isn't very fun, but since I'm not comparing its fun level to the original Hot Shot as much here, it feels more forgivable. Instead, I'm comparing it to Wheelie's toy, which is always very flattering! The joints on Dion are nicely tight except for one of his legs, which likes to pop off at the knee whenever it feels like it.
Dion comes with Cop-Tur. You heard me.
So now I have two Dion toys. It's all right. One represents him before he got murdered, and the other after. Boy, he sure got big. I wonder if his shoulders hurt.