Posts tagged with "unicron" - 1
Posted April 22, 2021 at 3:30 pm

Okay, let's try to actually write something down here.

Haslab Unicron is goddamned massive.  I know every other disbeliever on the Internet for two years was all "lol he's just a few inches taller than Titan Class Fortress Maximus," but seeing him in person brings up that ol' Pizza Equation.  See, a large pizza actually has twice the area of a medium pizza, even though the diameter's just a few inches more.  Things can be bigger in more than one dimension, and that's where the calculus is off.  

You have to back up a few feet to actually see all of Unicron at once.

That's why it's hard to, like, focus on something about him you might dislike?  Oh, is the backpack of planet plates too big?  Honestly I have to be reminded it exists, because this dude is overwhelming my senses.  I look at him, focus my eyes on his face and chest, and have to actively dart my eyes around to find other shit.  He is a three dimensional object, and photographs just flatten him to the point where they're worthless.  Again, he's got a backpack?  Yeah, sure, like eight inches behind where his torso is.  That may as well be in another state, as far as field of depth means anything.    You take a photo of him, and you don't get the actual experience of seeing him.   

Transforming him requires all the upper body strength you have.  Even with him on the stand, up on his shipping box (which you will need to keep around to help transform him), you're going to need some good biceps.  And it takes a while.  And it's not very pretty for most of it.  Lots of planet slabs, and they all pile up like lasagna on his legs and back.  Everything fits together perfectly when you're done, but until then it kind of hangs there.   It's a literal juggling act until everything eventually snaps into place.  

Unicron fits on my desk, but my desk was already primed to fit two Titan Class toys at once (Scorponok and Fort Max).  He takes up the same space they took up, together.  At some point in the future where I'm ready to move him off my desk, there's a spot in my shelving in my office.  It's IKEA shelving, but it's not a Billy.  Unicron would not fit on a Billy.  He definitely isn't going to fit inside or even on top of a Detolf, despite a handful of folks getting one of those for him in anticipation.  No, mine's a larger unit, a LIATORP, and the lower third of that unit is 35"x30", with a depth of 15".  He fits into that space just barely in robot mode (if he's off his stand or you unscrew the back leg off of the stand), and absolutely won't fit in planet mode.  If he's in planet mode, he has to go on my desk.   Again: Fucking huge.

I'm almost entirely talking about size, but this is honestly what I wanted.  I wanted the largest Unicron Hasbro could give me.  Any larger than this and we probably start bending physics without collapsing under its own weight (or comes shipped in a box too big to fit through a door).  

He comes with some extra stuff.  The unforked chin is what he comes packaged with, but you can swap out that chin for the forked one and then forget it exists.  There's also a busted up face you can replace the rest of his face with, for replicating those post-movie episodes where his disembodied head orbits Cybertron.  Both the chin and the extra face can be stored underneath the stand. 

There's also an Autobot shuttle, centimeter-tall Rodimus and Galvatron microfigures, and a stand for all three of those guys and the head when it's removed.  The stand has room for later expansion, with slots for future microfigures and probably another spaceship or two.

These are nice, but... the important thing is...


I'm extremely happy with him.

Posted May 8, 2013 at 12:15 am
I was surprised at the number of vendors selling Transformers at Calgary Expo.  It was a sizable representation!   Quite a few booths were Transformers-only.

For example, there was this booth at the back of the hall, and, huh, they had mint carded 1984 Frenzy/Laserbeak and Rumble/Ravage sets for like $20 and, weird, is that a boxed Sunstreaker for $40?  ...oh.  Right.  I see.  Counterfeit.  Just buttloads of counterfeit Transformers.  You'd only know because they weren't hundreds of dollars.  (Well, there are really slight ways to tell from examining the specifics of the packaging, like if something or another is a millimeter to the left, but that is not knowledge I possess.)  Thought that was kinda skeevy.  The guy who was selling them referred to them as "reprints."  I suppose that's a euphemism.

But actual Transformers that were real Transformers made by real Transformers factories weren't badly priced, either!  Like the Axalon here.  I think when he came out he was like $50 to import.  He's just a deluxe, but he's "limited run" or something, and TakaraTomy needed the dough I guess and so they cranked up the prices for this leg of United stuff.  But a booth at Calgary Expo had him for $30!  Canadian!  That's like $25 American.  So I scooped up the heck outta that.

And then Air Canada lost my luggage on the way home (nearly getting me stranded in Toronto since you can't go through customs if your luggage ain't security-cleared) and it took a few days for me to get him home.


He's, uh, the Axalon.  The Maximal ship from Beast Wars.  As a robot.  Look, okay, Takara released the Deluxe Class bug-machine-tank-thinger Unicron as "Ark Unicron," aka "The Autobot Ship Is Possessed By Unicron Or Something" and so the story is that Primus made the Axalon be alive too in order to fight him.  Crazy, right?  It's the kind of crazy I'd buy for $25 but not $50.

And, look, yes, I know, he has an Autobot symbol on him despite being a Maximal ship, and yes, I know that his toy was designed to be the Nemesis, an entirely different ship which was also around at the time so why is it the Axalon, but...


Posted October 9, 2012 at 9:24 pm
Maybe it's the nearly 20 years we went without a Unicron toy, but I just can't pass up a new Unicron toy.  I'm pretty sure I have all of them, save some redecoes.  There's this artificial (by now) feeling of Unicron toy scarcity that compels me to buy them.  Why am I buying this, my brain asks?  The answer is, obviously, because it's friggin' Unicron, my seven-year-old self  barks back at me.

There could be worse compulsions.  I like Unicron.  At least, I really like the Unicron that appeared in the later Marvel Comics and gave him a purpose beyond "random eating robot built by tiny dumb monkey alien."  Him being the cosmic Big Bad, the Transformers Satan,  just makes more sense.  That has been, thankfully, the Unicron that has marched forward since, even into the current permutation of the Transformers brand, Transformers Prime.  TFP can be pretty by-the-numbers at times, but I really like what they did with Unicron.  It's hard to make that guy fresh.  But Unicron's body is actually the Earth's core, and his essence can barf up onto land via volcanoes.  It's a pretty dark twist, putting the Ultimate Evil below our own feet.

Anyway, that's why this Unicron looks like he's a rock monster and why he transforms into his own face inside of a volcano.  Sure, the instructions tries to pass his alternate mode off as a spaceship, but that's no spaceship.  It's a volcano with Unicron's face embedded in it, with his skeletal wings doubling for a lightning storm.  It's a Face Volcano.  And it's why I love this toy.  Because Face Volcano.

Otherwise, it's just another toy of Unicron that also transforms into the most bullshittiest third mode "Capture Mode" ever.  Yeah, there's this other thing you do with him, besides the robot and the Face Volcano, that involves you splitting Unicron open, yanking him apart, and wrapping him around either Megatron or Optimus Prime.  It looks like it should be pretty simple if dorky-looking, but it is so aggravating to try to put into place that I've decided this third Capture Mode is a prank.  It's a lie.  It doesn't exist.   TakaraTomy's trying to pull one over on me.  The only other option is that they are not very great at making toys, and I think I prefer my toy companies evil rather than incompetent.   Seriously, it makes you break your toy to put it together according to the instructions. And even then nothing lines up properly, resulting in a sloppy mess.  If you are not bald or gray already, this Capture Mode will make you so.  Ignore it.

Unicron comes with a Mini-Con, like other Japanese TFPrime toys, and this one transforms from a mole-like creature into Unicron's left arm.  When the Mini-Con's on vacation, you can pull the halves of Unicron's big spikey club arm apart and they can be used for both of his arms.  This doesn't look too great, because the half-arms are obviously half-arms with no backs to them, so I think the Mini-Con's staying attached to his elbow.

Technically, this Unicron is an army builder, since there were buttloads of him in the season one finale, but I think I'll pass.  There was only one Face Volcano, after all.
Posted October 5, 2010 at 12:29 pm

Unicron may not fit into my lighting studio, but the lighting ain't so bad on top of our white table against our white wall at about... noon.  With fill-in lights.  And heavy use of Photoshop.

So, hooray!  I was sad because the normal-room-light photos didn't give you a good appraisal of his colors.  Now to transform this guy so I have photos for TFwiki.

Posted October 3, 2010 at 1:00 am
Nom nom nom.

I've always had a fascination with the cosmic portion of the Transformers mythos.  It's weird, because I'm not like that with, say, Marvel.  When it comes to Marvel, I'm more about Spider-Man.  I couldn't care less about Galactus and Thanos.  I want to see the mundane.  Same with DC, where I prefer the "street-level" Batman stuff to the grander scale stories.

This isn't to say that I don't care about the smaller Transformers stories.  That's very far from the truth.  The smaller stuff is easily the most important.  But the weird part is that I care at all about the cosmic Transformers stuff.  I like the "Original Thirteen" crap and the Covenant and anything pertaining to The Fallen.  So, of course, I like Unicron.

Mind, for the first few years of Unicron's existence in my childhood, he was just that big planet guy the Transformers fought in the movie.  He was big, he ate things, and he was created by a space monkey.  The only thing that could destroy him was some doodad in Optimus Prime's chest.  For no reason.  There wasn't much to him.  He was neat, I guess, but ultimately one-dimensional.  It was Simon Furman, the Marvel UK writer, that made me super-interested in Unicron.  He retconned Unicron as the ultimate enemy of the Transformers, the Satan to their Creator God, Primus.  The Matrix was the only thing that could stop him because it contained a portion of Primus' life force.  This was the context that made Unicron compelling to me.

Somehow 20% (so far) of the multiverse fits inside him.

Unicron continues to be compelling partly because, to me, he's the one thing that ties all Transformers stories together.  There are so many different and crazy continuities out there.  Transformers has been rebooted no fewer than a hojillion times.  But whenever Unicron shows up, it's the same guy.  There's only one Unicron, shared by an infinite number of universes.  He makes me feel like the Transformers multiverse isn't so fragmented.  There's something that holds it all together, that it's just one huge story with smaller parts.  Parts that Unicron wants to eat.

And so that's why I would pay a lot of money to own a special Unicron.

I specifically requested a honeybaked ham!

Behold my special Unicron!  Takara's been celebrating 2010 with toy releases that harken back to the third season of the original cartoon, and this gussied-up Unicron is one of its biggest attractions.  It's largely the original Armada Unicron that I already have, but with many small differences.

The biggest of the small differences is the new head.  The Mini-Con-symbol-foreheaded Armada head was actually pretty awesome in its own right, but it took a few liberties that are "corrected" here.  Takara basically grabbed the 1986 animated movie's head and made it three-dee.

This could never happen in fiction.

The rest of the differences are in the deco.  2010 Unicron is a much darker, saturated orange than the Armada version.  His dark gray legs skew teal ever so very, very slightly, so you end up with a giant vibrant poster child for the "orange and teal" color treatment every single movie gets these days.  He's amazingly pretty in person because of this.  Almost all of him is paint-washed, as well, so his tiny sculpted detail all over his body pops out.  But, thankfully, not so much that he looks dirty or muddy.  Too much paint wash can just make things look small, rather than large.

Planetary dentata, what a wonderful phrase.

2010 keeps all of his original electronics and gimmickry.  The missile still fires out of his giant chest doors when you activate it with his Mini-Con.  He still comes with his Mini-Con!  His eyes and right fist still light up, too.  Oh, and there's those Mini-Con activated missiles on his legs.  And he comes in a gorgeous box.

If I have any complaint with him, it's this:  I can't imagine how they budgeted for him to be covered in this much paint, with all this paint wash and attention to detail, yet they neglect to paint the gray on the outside of his helmet so that it wraps all the way around his head.

Ethan carried this thing around early last week, if you remember.

How does this happen?  Seriously, what in the Hell?  They even took the time to paint stuff on his back silver, even though that's going to be covered up with kibble 99% of the time and facing the wall.  But not the sides of his face.


Other than that glaring oversight, he's absolutely great.  I can sell my old Armada Unicron, now!  Not that it'll go for much, as that version of him was released at least three times to retail, and can sell on eBay for about $20.  But mine has Reprolabel upgrade stickers!  That's got to be worth something, right?

Tags: unicron
Posted June 4, 2010 at 3:18 am
Well, that was some fun fake news which I posted because I am an idiot who can't read.

Let's try for some real news!  Uh...


Hey, check out this Unicron.  He's Armada Unicron with a new more-G1 head, decoed in more-G1 colors.  Oh, Japan, always finding ways to paint things orange and thus get my attention.

And, uh, hey, watch this, I guess:

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