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Thursday, February 7, 2019

Talk about dull, Daniel... Fanstoys Hoodlum aka Masterpiece Hotrod

A few years ago, Fanstoys announced they were going to make a Hotrod toy called "Hoodlum" because "Harold" wasn't cutting the mustard with focus groups. Well, Takara released their MP28 Hotrod and it took out a little of the spring in their step. Fanstoys held their resolve, and 3 years later, they released Hoodlum and the results show the 3 year delay.

First off, my Hoodlum was compromised. As I peeled the "protective" film off the front of the figure, some of the paint peeled off as well off the decal flames. My vendor is looking into replacement parts, but until then, the below photos were taken after I dabbed on a few light coats of deep yellow with the slightest molecules of yellow ocre. 

Hotrod comes with his two toy blasters, a targetmaster minibot gun (not pictured), buzzsaw, and a factoryload full of issues.


Hotrod's original function: Dinobot pedicurist. 

 Robot mode looks fantastic from the front. Details are good, face sculpt is one of Fanstoys' best, and he's loaded with diecast. So much diecast, that apparently paint doesn't want to stick to it!  Besides my issue, several people have reported flaky paint during transformation. It's not yet as bad as Xtransbots'  first release of Ollie, or Badcube's first attempt at Huffer, but it is a major let down.


Transformation was simple by Fanstoys standards. He actually transforms like one of the movie transformations, with the front fenders spinning around the hood of the car. Legs collapse like many modern figures. One of the most interesting parts of the transformation is the arms. The "sleeves" expand past the hands to form the rear fenders, and the hands are used to lock the back fenders into place. Very interesting concept.

Extreme caution and care should be taken while transforming. Part of the qc issues with this guy include the scraping of paint on the hood, as well as rivets breaking during the spinning of the car hood. My copy had very slight scraping of paint on the nose of the hood. A tiny dab of magenta testors and it looked good as new.  Personally, I think the vehicle mode looks pretty good. Rolls well.

The front view comparison you see the tapered chest and rounded knees, just like the animation.

Sideview, both are hunchbacks, but Hoodlum wears it better.


Top view (lets face it, everyone looks at their toys from the ceiling lamp, right?)

Lets go pop holes in Unicron, guys!

Overall, Hotrod is typical Fanstoys in build, and has the squeaky joints and traditional articulation, but he has some questionable use of diecast, and a lot of QC issues. If a shelf piece is what you are looking for, Hoodlum is ok, just be VERY careful peeling off the protective film!  If you like transforming a lot, and making vroom vroom sounds, I suggest sticking with the official product.


Bulletpoints!

PRO
  • Animation accurate sculpt. Looks great next to other 3rd Season figures.
  • Brilliant arms transformation, with hands as a lock.
  • Transforms similar to scene at Autobot City of the movie.
  • Painted accessories look great.

CON

  • Paint scratches and flakes off easily.
  • No matrix chamber.
  • Too much diecast. Unnecessarily heavy for such a small figure. 
  • Opening windshield and seats, but too small for Daniel minifigures.
  • 3 year old design. Doesn't have some of the modern extras found in more current MP-alikes.

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