For the 10th anniversary of the Michael Bay movies, Hasbro and Takara have released a Masterpiece line of movie figures, completely new figures. First of the releases is masterpiece Bumblebee.
Full disclosure, my copy of the figure has been misassembled by the factory. The rib cage tab locks were flipped, making them impossible to lock. At the time of this review, I'm waiting for a solution from the retailer I purchased from. This "hiccup" doesn't greatly affect my enjoyment of the figure, just means he's a little floppy at the moment.
Car mode is a mixed bag. It looks good, but doesn't like to stay tabbed. If you align one side, the other pops out. It doesn't roll well, it's more or less for display only.
Transformation is a rather straight endeavor. While not completely screen accurate, the transformation manages to incorporate several elements of the movie's key focuses during morphing sequences, such as the foot tabs.
Robot mode is where this really shines. Easily the best of available Bumblebees, the details are striking. The non-yellow parts are all shades of oily gunmetal, greasy grays, and rich blacks. They really did a beautiful job on such a small, detailed figure. Even his forehead has an autobot logo the size of a pinhead! The eyes have a ring of translucent plastic for light piping that works fairly well, though I still dislike the gimmick.
There is a sizeable amount of diecast in the legs and torso, making him a hefty figure for his size, but his balance is perilous due to the size of his "wings" and backpack. Long heel spurs must be used for any dramatic poses.
Scale-wise he fits in perfectly with Leader class toys of the movie line, and slightly too large for G1 Masterpieces. For those with M01 commander, he's way too small. He's a good fit for Leader Masterpiece Starscream and Brawl.
Overall, while a tad pricey for a carbot ($79 to $120 depending on vendor), Masterpiece Bumblebee is a beautiful start to a new scale of Masterpiece Transformers. Next release is Optimus Prime, and beyond that is a mystery I look forward to seeing!
- Looks detailed, and really captures the face of the movie Bumblebee.
- Miss assembled. Cannot transform into a car.