Posted January 5, 2013 at 12:53 am
Hey, guys, Soundwave's got a new toy where little guys fit into his chest and pop out and you can buy a whole army of the little buggers. There've been other Soundwave toys since 1984 where a guy fit into his chest, but this was always a limited enterprise of one or two dudes. This Soundwave's got six so far, not counting the five upcoming Autobots which also utilize the same interaction.

Soundwave's part of the first wave of Voyager Class ($25) Generations figures.  Who does he share that first wave with?  HIMSELF!  One out of every four figures in the case assortment is actually Soundblaster, a same-character redeco of Soundwave based on his black-gold-and-red Headmasters appearance.  That's right, it's "New Soundwave," as regaled by the infamously terrible English dub of those episodes.  Soundwave comes with Laserbeak (red) and Soundblaster comes with Buzzsaw (gold).

I wasn't super keen on either Soundwave or Soundblaster, honestly, but I can't not buy a Buzzsaw toy.  Buzzsaw is awesome.  (Also, turns out I kind of have a growing nigh-complete Recordicons display, and the inclusion of these guys is perhaps mandatory anyhow.)  So when I found Soundwave and Soundblaster buried deep in the Batman stuff while I was in San Diego, I put Soundwave back where he goes and grabbed Soundblaster for myself.   Besides, I already have a toy of Aligned Laserbeak, so this particular iteration of him isn't super-high priority.  He can wait for sales.

I had already found the sets of the other guys (Frumble/Ratbat and Frumble/Ravage), so I knew I was gonna like Buzzsaw.  Ratbat was the best of those guys, and Ratbat's just a reshell of Laserbeak/Buzzsaw.  The reason why he's the best is that he's the simplest and least irritating.  When  he drops in Data Disk mode onto the ground and the button underneath him springloads him into "vulture" mode, that's it.  That's the end of the transformation.  There's no more left to do.  And he's easy to put back in Data Disk mode.

Plus, y'know, he's Buzzsaw, whose predecessor was a frightening friggin' monster who will kill you with his face.

I will talk more about the gimmick itself when I write later about the other Recordicons, but it will suffice to say this now: WHEN THE INSTRUCTIONS TELL YOU TO PUT THE DATA DISK INTO SOUNDBLASTER'S CHEST WITH THE BUTTON FACING OUT, THIS IS A HORRIBLE LIE.  DO NOT DO THIS.  EVER.  PUT THE DISK IN BUTTON-FIRST, FOR THE LOVE OF GOD.

Soundblaster himself is basically a larger version of the Deluxe Class War for Cybertron Soundwave from a few years ago, but now with a chest that flops open when you press a button on his shoulder.  He's got lots of tightly-ratcheted joints, so he's pretty solid.  I dunno if his vehicle mode is particularly inspiring, as it's a box with wheels, but I suppose that's probably better than a box without wheels, which is what Soundwave usually transforms into.

(Comics return on Monday, btw.)