It was the mid-Nineties, and I was trolling around a Tru-Value Hardware store in La Porte, Indiana. On the endcap of the perfunctory action figure aisle was a Mindwipe for like $12, the original pricetag still on it. At that point, Mindwipe was... several years off the shelves by then. He's from 1987. Someone must have found one hiding in the back and put it out.
And that's why I have a Mindwipe!
It's also why I was a little particular about which Titans Return Mindwipe I got, the domestic or the Japanese version. The Japanese version takes care to paint the front of his bat wings brown like the original toy's, while the American version keeps it unpainted purple. Japanese version it is! (It also helps that the Japanese Mindwipe comes with the fifth iteration of Crashbash's little dino/dragon partner, named Servant, and if I already have the first four of them, I might as well have the fifth, right?)
The original Mindwipe is a box with a tiny bat head and tiny bat wings. He's about as deep as he is wide, because all his robot parts fold up into a cube to form the body of the bat, and all of the non-body bat stuff is extra hanging off him. It's a very G1 look.
Titans Return Mindwipe tries to fix that by giving him an entirely new transformation. The bat's wings now fold up into the robot mode's lower legs. They literally each hinge five times into a box, and the foot kind of swings up into place under the box. The bat's feet unfold into the robot mode's arms. The bat head folds back behind the torso rather than hiding itself inside the driver compartment.
Because the wings now form the legs, and Mindwipe apparently needs the bat wings the original toy had on his robot mode back, there's some fake kibble wings there for you, so that Mindwipe's robot mode silhouette is preserved. In bat mode, they're still there, but they fold back mostly/hopefully out of sight. Really, it just kind of looks like the batmode has an extra pair of smaller bat wings shooting out of his shoulderblades.
The bat mouth opens and closes. It's weird, though, because the whole head is so rubbery. The robot mode's bladed shield pegs into the back of the bat mode to become the worst bat tail ever. It's like pegging a Hostess Suzy Q into his butt.
Mindwipe wins points for being inventive in its transformation, rather than just duplicating the original's engineering like some other modern Transformers reinventions, but I do wish his thighs were more substantial. They look tinier than they even are because of his tall knees, but even so his thighs are so dainty short. The paint matching on his biceps isn't so good versus the plastic on either end, either. The rest of him is fine, though I wish his bat mode were a little less greebled-out.