Posts tagged with "masterpiece" - 1
Posted December 18, 2019 at 2:34 pm

Hey, did you know that Masterpiece Blackrachnia's boobs are actually smaller than original toy Blackarachnia's boobs?  Hard to believe!  I mean, technically they started out being Tarantulas's pecs and looked more like a pair of golf balls, but it's somehow true!

Anyway, here's MP-46 Blackarachnia.  She's about the size of a large Deluxe Class toy.  (She's practically identical in size to Animated Blackarachnia, for example.)  I mean, you can tell she costs more just by looking at her -- she's ... a lot of paint and her parts count is massive.  But this is what size Blackarachnia's gotta be if she's gonna be in scale with everyone else in the Beast Wars Masterpiece range.  She wasn't a large gal!  The shortest character on the show, actually, ranking below Quickstrike, Rattrap, and Scorponok.  

Her size is relevant insomuch as she has to transform from one thing into another thing, and the two things share essentially zero parts.  Masterpiece Dinobot was also like this, and what he did to get from velociraptor to robot was... turn entirely inside out.  He was a Popple.  But he could do this because he was massively large.  There was enough of him that he actually could turn inside out.  Blackarachnia, though, uh.  She be small.  There's not enough of her to do what Dinobot does.  

She tries, though.

Obviously, by looking at her, the robot mode's accuracy was emphasized.  In robot mode, she's a perfect action figure of the CGI model.  The only thing that's even a tiny bit off is the exact curvy shape of the spider abdomen stuff on her back, and even that's getting picky.  It's hard to tell that she even transforms into something, at a glance.  She's got spider legs on her arms and that's it.  

The spider mode is definitely where all the compromises landed.  Her tiny head and thorax sit atop a massive pile of robot mode arms.  Her robot mode legs are too large to tuck entirely inside her spider mode abdomen.  The thing is, there's just not anywhere for all this stuff to go.  Her two modes are largely incompatible, and she's too insubstantial to be as creative with the transformation as one'd like.  Cramming all the accuracy into the robot mode seems like the best idea between "favoring robot," "favoring spider," and "making both look bad."

Blackarachnia comes with one stand square (Dinobot came with two squares), a support arm for the stand, four web parts that combine with each other to form a complete web and attach to the support arm, and an attachment piece to help you connect Blackarachnia to it in various ways.  This stuff is larger than the toy itself, so even though Blackarachnia is pretty small, you get a big chunk of plastic.   

There's also two alternate heads (nigh-identical smiling and laughing-while-green-eyes-glowing), a harpoon that attaches to the harpoon weapon that forms out of part of her abdomen, a second harpoon attached to a string which you can use to swing or hang Blackarachnia from, and a VR mask attached to a wire and a separate extra wire.

Masterpiece Blackarachnia is a small but incredibly intricate toy that transforms from a 100% perfect robot mode (which is extremely poseable) to a spider-mode that looks okay if you haven't put your contacts in yet, comes with a few extra faces, a large diarama stand, and some weapons.  How much you want this for the price she asks depends on how much you dig Blackarachnia.  

Posted September 23, 2019 at 12:06 am

I think I described Masterpiece-36 Megatron as a toy you don't transform so much as you sculpt.  You kind of massage one form into the other at a much more granular scale than is typical.  The forearm's the wrong shape coming out of the vehicle mode?  Moosh it.  Moosh it into its proper form.  

MP-44 Optimus Prime (version 3) is just like that.  You moosh him.

A truck cab has too much mass up in front and not enough out back for it to translate into the proper shape for robot mode?  Just grab some front mass and move it to the back.  Move it and moosh it.  Like modeling clay.  It's similar to a live-action movie transformation, but just, y'know, resulting in a clean, cartoonish robot.  

And it takes a bit.  I wouldn't categorize the process under "fun," particularly, but there was nothing about it I hated.  It's just kind of low-key tedium.  But it's hard to argue with the results.  The cab looks like the cartoon's cab, lack of silver stripe and all, and the robot mode looks like the cartoon's robot.  Like, literally like it.  And not in a sterile way, like the starkly boxy $5 nontransformable G1 Optimus Prime figures you can find at Walmart.  He looks as alive as a representation of That Particular Character Model can be.  Which is surprisingly a lot.  This toy pokes at your lizard brain.

MP-44 Optimus Prime comes with a lot of stuff, all of it from specific cartoon episodes that I don't particularly care for.  Sure, there's the hand-axe (which was also in the Marvel UK comic), but there's Sideswipe's jetpack he can wear, there's Starscream's head and shoulder kibble you can add so you can pretend this was Starscream dressing up like Optimus Prime to fool humanity in... I want to say "Megatron's Master Plan"?  There's a beat up head and a busted ab slice you can swap in if you want to approximate Optimus Prime's broken form from The Transformers: The Movie.  You can transform and remove the Combat Deck stuff inside the trailer to reenact an animation error where Combat Deck popped out of himself as a mini version of himself on wheels.  There's tiny articulated figures of Spike, Sparkplug, and Carly.  

And important to me, MP-44 Optimus Prime has an option to switch between the first season head and the second season (and movie) head.  The first season head is what the Marvel Comics used for its run.  Second season head always reads as "the cartoon" to me.  And so I like the first season head.  That's my nostalgia button.

A few people's MP-44 knees broke.  Mine seem to be fine.  

MP-10, the previous Optimus Prime Masterpiece, didn't look like it really belonged with the other guys I'd amassed to stand next to him.  Prowl, Ratchet, Ultra Magnus, Wheeljack... They were all very cartoony.  MP-10 kinda stood out a bit, more and more.  Especially versus the new Megatron.  MP-44 is a re-alignment.  It settles better in the groove that Masterpiece decided it was gonna inhabit, for better or worse.  

Posted April 16, 2019 at 11:05 pm

gonna get this out of the way first, but the rubber ducky is a season two thing, and this is a season one megatron toy, so no it wasn't gonna ever come with a rubber ducky and no it's not weird or wrong that it doesn't

Many people assume Dinobot is my favorite Transformers character.  I do like him a lot, and I collect him religiously, but he's not actually my Number One.  My favorite Transformers character is actually Dinobot's nemesis, Predacon Megatron.  Megatron's an intellectual and physical powerhouse whose only weakness is he loves being evil with style and class.  He's not just a jackass, he also enjoys being a jackass, and he wants you to know he enjoys being a jackass.  It's fun to watch him fail, it's fun to watch him succeed -- it's just fun to watch him, which is rare for a Megatron.  

So the Masterpiece toy line has finally gotten to my favorite Transformers character, and... it's a big'un.  He's not the biggest Masterpiece toy so far (Ultra Magnus and Star Saber are larger), but he towers a bit over the G1 and Movie Optimus Primes and G1 Megatron.  Masterpiece toys have long maintained a strict robot mode scale, and if you want Megatron to be in scale with Masterpiece Optimus Primal and the nearly-as-large Masterpiece Dinobot, you're going to have a giant-ass Beast Wars Megatron toy.  

Like the other Beast Wars Masterpieces, Megatron is meticulously decoed.  He's got metallic paint and/or plastic to match the look of the mid-90s CGI.  He's got texture-mapped deco across his dinosaur skin surfaces.  The color matching is meticulous.  There's no places where the paint runs out because it goes around a corner and the budget's thin.  He's painted from every angle.  

He's electronic!  Batteries go into both of his heads.  The batteries in his robot head make his eyes light up.  The batteries in his tyrannosaur head play speech clips.  They're all in Japanese, of course, but there are quite a few of them.  

For the reasons listed above, he's also pretty expensive! has pretty good discounts on preorders, but without them, he was the most expensive Masterpiece toy thus far.  That is, until the third Masterpiece Optimus Prime comes out this fall.  (Prime's shorter, but he comes with, you know, a trailer.)

Megatron comes with a handful of accessories.  He's got two extra faces in addition to the neutral one.   There's the trademark grimace, which should remind us of the original toy's expression.  And most importantly, there's the Grin.  Some call it the Triangle Grin, some call it the Eric Cartman Grin, but it's the Grin.  I love that face.  It's the "Yeeessss!" face.  It's the "I love being an evil jackass" face.  And finally it's in plastic.  

There's also a toothbrush.  Yeah, there's a toothbrush, so you can replicate that scene in "Before the Storm" where we catch him with all his extra parts off brushing his dinosaur hand's teeth.  ...the extra parts also all come off.  You can yank off the hip guns, the tail itself from the arm, the kibble piled on his back, and the shoulderpads.  This leaves you with a pretty skeletal Megatron robot that's only got the dinosaur hand, his dinosaur boots, and the dinosaur taint.  And it's all so you can more faithfully replicate that time he brushed his dinosaur hand's teeth. These Transformers folks at TakaraTomy are madmen.  

Megatron comes with the shotgun he carries in "Call of the Wild."  He also comes with an adaptor for Dinobot's stand so you can mount Megatron on the stand's arm so that Optimus Primal can stand under Megatron's raised body -- also to replicate a scene from that same episode.  (There are also stand adaptor pieces for both robot and dinosaur modes.  There is no stand itself included -- you've gotta use Dinobot's or get a second Dinobot.)  There's also a weapon blast effect that you can plug into one of the shotgun barrels or into Megatron's open tyrannosaur mouth.  

Transforming him the first time isn't fun!  The instructions actually come with a second, smaller sheet of... corrections, so that you transform him properly without breaking him.  Some of his hinges -- especially within the pile of tyrannosaur hide that bunches up on his back -- feel a little fragile.  The instructions want you to fold them in the proper order.  It's also difficult to pull the tyrannosaur hide parts apart the first time.  They're locked together pretty well, and you don't know yet where the connection pieces are and where the hinges are.  It's a pretty large web of interconnected thin plastic sheets.  

The second problem area is transforming his torso.  Most of it pulls out along a slider, and that sucker is, like, paint-locked or something.  It requires excessive force to pull out the first time, and you're not really sure what you can leverage against without breaking something.  I recommend... pushing with your thumb against the inside of the top of the pelvis while yanking back?  I dunno. 

It's all much easier the second time around.  You know where the tabs are, you know where the weak points are, and everything stops being so hard to yank out as it was the first time.  Which is good, because both modes are excellent (unlike Dinobot's) and so you're actually going to want to spend time with both of them.  

Some people have reported problems with the purple swirly plastic in the crotch.  A handful have reported cracking, and a few more have reported fear of cracking.  It's swirly plastic, and there are already some carved grooves in there, and so once you hear about splitting, every facet looks like breakage.  Mine, so far, doesn't seem to have any problems.  It's been suggested that the problem is not actually weak plastic, but that those few handful of cracked crotches were because of a rarely-occurring gear misassembly inside the crotch.  Meaning, hopefully, that it's not something inevitable that will happen to everybody's Megatron, but something that will happen immediately to maybe five people once they move a hip in any direction, and everybody else's will likely be fine.  

Since mine seems to be okay, really the only downside to this fucking gorgeous toy is that my kids expect me to transform it constantly, and also transform it immediately.  Like, children, okay, but come back in half an hour, all right?  This is not a satisfactory answer to them.  They want dinosaur mode right now.  

I hand them Rescue Bots T-Rex Optimus Prime.  You just twist that guy's waist and he's done.

Posted December 18, 2018 at 10:33 pm

I really liked Masterpiece Shockwave, but wasn't entirely sold on the weird milky lavender color they did him in.  But no worry, TakaraTomy would release a newer version this year in the dark purple everybody wanted to begin with!  And for twice the price, because I guess it's exclusive to somewhere maybe, I dunno!  

So I sold my original MP Shockwave on eBay and put down for the new one.  

The review for this one is pretty simple: He's as great as I said the other one was, but purpler now!  

Okay, a wrinkle: His gray gun barrel backpack thinger is now painted.  And so it's a snugger fit into the purple backpack you can clasp over it to make him look more charater-model/original-toy accurate.  I think it might scrape a bit if you're not too careful.  

He also has his Decepticon logos tampographed on rather than there being a sticker sheet provided.  Which is fine for me, since they tampographed on the logos I wanted anyway.  

Anyway, PURPLER.  Better!  More expensive!  ... but a downpayment via selling the first one helps.

Posted December 1, 2018 at 11:38 pm

Pardon my appropriating of Lindsay Ellis's lexicon, but dang.  

I spent nine full days trying to get Masterpiece Bumblebee Movie Bumblebee from robot (how he's packaged) into Volkswagen Beetle mode.  Nine days!  Several attempts!  Each time, I'd end up with this gross, annoying mess.  And the instructions are zero help.  They obfuscate more than they illuminate.  They're terrible.  The whole process is not fun!   Thanks, I hate it!

Do not recommend.

I mean, MP Bee Movie Bee is probably fine if you're cool with a very okay robot mode action figure that's based on a prototyptical version of Bumblebee as seen in the finished film.  That's, you know, the problem with making a Masterpiece toy based on a movie that isn't out yet.  The designs aren't finished.  That's why the current Masterpieces (and Studio Series toys) are so much more accurate than the original toys based on those designs -- the toy designers had a chance to actually see finished footage of the characters.  Making a Masterpiece simultaneous to the source material's release is... a gamble. 

For example, you end up with this MP B Movie B with giant door wings.  Bumblebee in the film doesn't have the door wings!  They decided to flatten them down against his back.  This toy can't do that.  The door wings are jointed to be exactly the same as basically every Movie Bumblebee toy until this one.  

I mean, okay, I might be getting a little petty.  But I hated transforming this guy.  Hated it.  And it hated me.  And the instructions threw some hate both our directions.  It was a hate three-way.  A big ol' orgy of hate.

Anyway, MPBMB comes with an alternate armored faceplate, a stinger sword and a stinger blaster.  They all can peg into his back if you want to store them there rather than in the box.  Also his chest halves flip up to reveal missile racks or whatever.  *shrug*

At least he's shorter and rounder and cuddlier than his hulked-out steroided-up future self.  

Posted September 20, 2018 at 10:08 pm

This guy is Ravage!

You can't convince me otherwise.

Ravage used to be one of those Transformers characters who had twice the toys of any other guy just through his involvement in Beast Wars.  This was, you know, before Generation 1 stuff made a comeback and you started getting Optimus Prime and Bumblebee toys on the reg.  But Ravage had a bunch!  He had his original toy, and he had the Beast Wars Metals toy, and he got Tripredacus Agent, and he got that McDonald's panther dude, and he got two friggin' Alternators, and he got Shadow Panther.

Sure, Shadow Panther wasn't Ravage in Japan.  He was just a black Cheetor redeco to fill out their line.  Give Rhinox somebody to be packed with in a versus set.  (Takara liked to do versus sets in addition to their single-pack toys back then.)  He was a "disguise warrior," which I'm guessing, knowing absolutely zero Japanese, is just a bad translation of "undercover agent."  (G1 Ravage was a saboteur.)  Shadow Panther had to be an undercover agent because back then, Maximals were, you know, mammals and birds and such, while Predacons were evil bugs and dinosaurs.  And so a Predacon panther would have to be one who's pretending to be a nice panther.  

But Ravage showed up in season two of Beast Wars, and Hasbro was all, "oh hey guess what, in lieu of an actual toy for this guy, we've decided this black cat guy we sell imported on our website is actually that Ravage, somehow."  I mean, they couldn't out-right call him Ravage.  In those days, someone else owned the trademark.  And so the official website called him "Tripredacus Agent," which was Ravage's role in the cartoon.  Later, Walmart would get a black and gold redeco of Transmetal 2 Cheetor named Tripredacus Agent, with a bio that continued to assert vaguely that he was Ravage without being called Ravage specifically, while also talking about all the previous jobs and bodies he's had, wink wink nudge nudge.  Ravage 3 Bodies Evolution indeed.  

Since then, every damn body from G1 has inserted themselves into Beast Wars.  But in the late nineties, before that explosion happened, Ravage's inclusion was special.  It was a fun time.  

Anyway, TakaraTomy redecoed Masterpiece Cheetor as Masterpiece Shadow Panther.  Their Shadow Panther continues to not be Ravage, but I don't care.  I got him, and he's Ravage to me.  

MP Shadow Panther has a few accessories left out of Cheetor's release.  He's got the little communication device that he used in "The Web."  Two of them, actually.  One sized to fit on his robot arm, another to fit on his beast mode foreleg.  He's also got the "mutant head" that the original toy had but cartoon Cheetor did not.  It plugs onto the toy's face, rather than the head itself flipping over like the original.  All three of these pieces are chromed.  

Shadow Panther is a little less extensively decoed than Cheetor.  Cheetor's a cheetah, and so 90% of him is covered in spots.  Shadow Panther is black!  I mean, he has some areas of his black deco that's also covered in some fur-like tampography, similar to MP Optimus Primal's, but it's not over every surface.  

His cheetah --er, panther mode is still hella awkward.

But he's Ravage, from back when being Ravage meant something unique and special, and so I love him.

Posted August 2, 2018 at 11:37 pm

I may have once related through the webcomic medium about how, for a while, there was an arms race between Hasbro and Takara to make a more show-accurate Dinobot.  There was the original toy, and then Takara put a gold helmet on it and de-pinked it a bit, and then later Hasbro tried to do more-show-accurate colors from scratch (badly), and then Takara tried to one-up them again (to limited success), and then Hasbro had a new Dinobot toy which was sculpted to look more cartoon-accurate, and then Takara painted it to match...

Kind of felt like, you know, a game that would go on forever.


Witness Masterpiece Beast Wars Dinobot.  He painstakingly recreates both the robot mode and the beast mode from the CGI cartoon, and somehow transforms back and forth.  For good or ill.  See, the problem with Dinobot's CGI robot mode is that it's clearly not anything that can transform into a raptor.  It's just a robot with fleshy arms and a flattened-out raptor head on the chest.  Everything else is robot.  How does it become an organic, scaly velociraptor?  Well, in CGI, it happens through replacing one model with the other in a fancy way through which hopefully you won't notice.  Slight-of-hand, mostly.  

And the problem with Dinobot's CGI velociraptor mode is that it looks like garbage.  I mean, all praise where it's due -- this was 1996 computer animation for television.  But, like, it's, uh, not a good velociraptor.  I like to think the completely new Cyber Raptor models for the third season were a "hey look we can make a good velociraptor CGI model we swear" moment for the crew.  

What I'm beating around the bush at is, uh, yeah, this toy transforms from a robot IMPOSSIBLY into a terrible, terrible velociraptor.  On purpose.

And I love it.

Please take me seriously when I say this toy turns inside out.  It does.  The walls of the velocraptor torso are all robot bits sculpted on the inside, and the walls of the robot torso are all scaly on their insides.  To get from raptor to robot, you open up the torso, shove the velociraptor head inside, and close up the robot torso walls around it.  The raptor head doesn't become the robot chest, despite that being the original transformation and the CGI model's intent.  It hides away inside the torso while the stomach of the velociraptor unfolds into the flattened, torso-shaped velociraptor head chest the CGI model had.  This achieves the purpose of the endeavor: to have a Dinobot robot mode that looks like the CGI.  

The velociraptor mode is definitely the second priority.  It does its best, and doesn't QUITE achieve the actual shape of the CGI raptor, with its giant torso and slightly undersized head.  But it tries. be a terrible velociraptor.  

Again, I love this.  SOME toy should try to be the terrible show model and succeed.  And this is that toy.  No expense spared!  

His rotate blade still spins when you push a lever.  This is important.  A Dinobot without his rotate blade is no Dinobot indeed.  He still has his segmented sword.  

What's extra this go-round are a lot of smaller things and one big thing.  The big thing is his giant display stand with the giant display arm.  Dinobot is a pretty large, heavy toy, and sometimes a dude needs support.  Especially in velociraptor mode, where like 99% of the weight is in the torso, which is not centered with the legs, and the tail is like a few grams at most, so it's not great at standing.  The stand helps.  It comes with a translucent piece that plugs around his stomach.  There's a different piece for robot mode that wraps around his butt.  

He also comes with the Golden Disk!  The Voyager "Sounds of Earth" one.  This is a season one toy, and the second Golden Disk, the alien one, had no association with Dinobot until season 2.  There's both a translucent stand for the disk and a little attachment to help Dinobot hold the disk in his hands in either mode.  

Dinobot also comes with FOUR different faces!  There's default, angry, smirking, and LASER EYES.  Laser eyes face comes with a further attachment that plugs into his eyes and makes him look like he's shooting laserbeams.  The mouth on each is articulated, so you can achieve an incredible range of expressions across the four options and their variants.  Put two button batteries into his head, press the button at the back of his skull, and his eyes glow red.  Hold down the button and the eyes glow green for the laserbeam attachment.  

Pros: It's goddamn fucking Dinobot and it's beautiful, even the parts that are ugly, because it's goddamn fucking Dinobot.  He comes with four faces with articulated mouths.  He's massive and huge and scaled properly to everyone else in the Beast Wars Masterpiece range.... which is why he's massive and huge.  He's incredibly impressive to behold.

Cons: Takes a while to transform, what with the flipping inside out.  His weight is not distributed evenly and so most poses require the stand.  Some people have had problems with one of the shoulder ratchets.  He's $200.

For me, I mean, the pros and cons were irrelevant.  It's a toy of Dinobot.  I was gonna have it.  

Posted January 17, 2018 at 10:45 pm

Shortpacked! started running on January 17, 2005, and ended on January 17, 2015!  So, uh, happy anniversary or whatever, to either this website's birth or death.  Let's talk about an orange bat!

Remember Action Masters?  The Transformers who can't transform that ended Transformers forever and ever?  (transformers was honestly pretty dead before then)  Well, Action Master Soundwave came with a little transformable partner named Wingthing, and he was an orange and black bat.  A few years ago, Ratbat was redecoed in orange and black as an updated Wingthing, and this new Masterpiece Wingthing updates that toy again.  (Surprise, it's Masterpiece Ratbat in orange and black!)

Masterpiece Ratbat is one of the best Masterpiece cassettes, probably coming in a close second to MP Laserbeak/Buzzsaw.  Ravage is kinda okayish and Frenzy/Rumble is comparatively boring because it's just a boxy dude, but Ratbat is pretty darn good!  And so, you know, Wingthing benefits by also being MP Ratbat, but in different colors.  Somehow this mini-cassette-shaped thing becomes this three-dimensional robobat -- essentially, everything that's not wings triples up on itself to create a block of torso.  That includes what used to be removeable accessories on the original toy; like MP Buzzsaw/Laserbeak, those parts are now integrated into the transformation.  And it's pretty rad!

There are little grooves underneath Wingthing's feet so that you can slot him onto corresponding grooves on MP Soundwave's shoulder or forearm.  

He's also got a pink mini-cassette case, same as the other three guys he comes packaged with.

If I had a complaint, it's that his head isn't black, like the original Action Master partner.  I assume the original Ratbat redeco had an orange head instead of black because of how the plastic layouts work, but there's nothing stopping painting MP Wingthing's head black along with his black-painted torso.  I guess it was decided to mirror the Ratbat redeco version of Wingthing rather than the original Action Master toy.  Iunno.

Posted January 15, 2018 at 5:01 am

I am tickled to death that while there is yet to be a Masterpiece, like, Jazz or Galvatron, there is now a Masterpiece toy of That Voicechanger Thing That Was Just A Red Frenzy Head.  

I mean, honestly, I dunno if I'd even get an MP Galvatron (I'd wait to see if it comes out later in toy/Galvatron II colors, probably), but I am hella up for Masterpiece Enemy.  That's right, this red Frenzy is named Enemy, because that's what was written on the Voicechanger Thing's packaging.  I'm sure we've covered this corner of the franchise before.  

And so here he is.  Masterpiece Enemy.  He's primarily red with some dark, very desaturated blue.  His eyes are now cartoon red, which is kind of a disappointment.  I feel like keeping the silver eyes from the Voicechanger (and the eventual real toy that preceded this Masterpiece version) would make him look more like Enemy.  I mean, we knew very few things about this guy for decades, and one of them was that he had silver eyes.  But, well, cartoon Decepticons have red eyes, so whatcha gonna do.

He comes with piledrivers, a backpack attachment for those piledrivers, of course those little silver guns you can also peg onto his back, and a pink mini-cassette case.  (I think the case is pink so that it can also look like Energon cubes when Soundwave smushes them flat in the cartoon.)  

I display my Rumble and Frenzy with mirror-imaged weapon placement (Frenzy right-handed and Rumble left-handed), and figured I'd keep the symmetry going by displaying Enemy with both of his weapons on his back.  The piledrivers are probably never going to be used again.  That's Rumble's thing.  

Enemy comes with three other Recordicon dudes I will probably also talk about later.

Posted August 28, 2017 at 2:01 am

I mentioned how Masterpiece Movie Optimus Prime was a situation of deja vu, sharing a lot of transformation ideas (and scale) with an older toy of him.  This is not the case for Masterpiece Movie Bumblebee.  Bumblebees tend to be Deluxe Class (and thus smaller), and so the only comparatively-sized toy to the new Masterpiece is the old Human Alliance toy.  And that figure prioritized having a hollow drivers compartment inside so it could be driven by a Sam Witwicky figure, so it had to take a few liberties with robot mode accuracy.

And so MP Movie Bumblebee feels like a whole new animal, one that he will undoubtedly rip the spine out of.

There's lots of little things here and there that no Movie Bumblebee toy has attempted to replicate before.  Bumblebee has his little collar pointy things, for example.  And it's kind of amazing that it's taken this long to get a Bumblebee toy that gives him both sets of robot mode wings.  Yeah, in the movies, he doesn't just have only the doors for wings.  There's a second set of smaller wings made out of car parts underneath those doors, because insects (aka bumblebees) have two sets of wings.  Stuff like this is possible when you're working with a larger toy than usual, apparently.  

Another visual departure from earlier Movie Bumblebees is the robot mode proportions.  Deluxe Bumblebees tend to have some abbreviated lengths here and there in order to be able to fit everything inside the car mode.  The Masterpiece does its best to give the robot mode the proper room to breathe.  The thighs are the usual culprit, and here they are a comparatively luxurious length.  

Be warned, because there is a lot of shit going on in transformation, mostly in the back half.  In order to get those luxuriously-lengthened legs, everything basically explodes and then tabs back together differently.  This is another departure from the usual Deluxe Class Bumblebees, which accordioned its legs in a simple, graceful manner.  These legs do not accordion, they disassemble centimeter by centimeter.  The instructions are of no help while transforming the robot mode back to vehicle mode.  They don't show you how to put everything back.

The front half is relatively easy.  Often getting the arms shoved back under the hood of the car on the way back to vehicle mode is an annoying ordeal.  Here, so long as the hands are tucked inside the forearms, it's very straightforward.  You merely lay the arms lengthwise underneath the hood, and nothing's there to get in the way of you doing this.  

Like Prime, Bumblebee's head can swap back and forth between normal and armored faces.  Also like Prime, Bumblebee comes with a weapon, though his is a cannon tip which you plug in over his wrist stump.  This cannon tip can stow on his back in robot mode or splay open and plug underneath the vehicle mode.  

MP Movie Bumblebee's biggest fault is his ankles and heels.  Unlike MP Movie Prime, Bumblebee does not stand very well.  Only his toes are metal, and there's no ratcheting joints to prevent unwanted movement.  Standing him up is often a balancing game, and it's kind of annoying.

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