Rob's Pile of Transformers: Manic Ramblings

Manic Ramblings and Delirous Ranting
re: Fox Kids Waspinator 

Picked up the Waspinator re-release tonight (along with
Jawbreaker and Iguanis, the latest Deluxe TM2s), from K-Mart. 
K-Mart seems to be getting the re-colors first in Philadelphia; the
two I hit tonight each had a single, lonely re-release... I left
Dinobot sitting next to his TM2 doppelganger, as the repaint is
kinda ugly and reminded me that I'm not all that fond of the original
Dinobot mold anyway.  I got Waspy despite his nasty-looking
colors, since I've never had an original Waspinator. Now I'm only
two Blackarachnias and a Tigerhawk away from having all the
show characters....
  Anyway, to my point: this guy is straight out of "The Killing Jar". 
In that G1 ep, there's a scene where some characters are sucked
into a black hole and emerge in a "negative universe", which
mucks up all their colors: we get a yellow Cyclonus, for example,
and Ultra Magnus in maroon and olive.  Well, this toy is what we'd
get if Waspinator had been along for the ride.  There's really no
other way to account for his mismatched palette of clashing earth
tones: mustard-gold, light blue-grey, big red-orange eyes, and to
cap it all off, dark blue wings.  
  The wings are a nice shade of blue, actually, and which look
great on a different toy.  But they look *terrible* wiht the blue and
yellow used on most of his body, as do the red eyes.  My
impression of Dinobot was much the same, compelling me to
wonder if they intentionally made these new releases unattractive
for some reason.  One would think they'd try to make the new
versions look *more* like those on the show, but instead they've
radically departed from the show's colors.  Repaints can be really
beautiful things if done right... these seem to be done wrong, IMO,
from the two I've seen.  But, nevertheless... it's good to have a
non-TM Waspinator at last. 
  The toy itself is pretty typical early BW fare: big insect legs on
the arms, and quite different from what we've gotten used to on the
show. Waspinator's big, fat, stripey thorax isn't as pronounced or
as flexible as it appears in CGI, and has a big hole in it where his
gun pulls out. The wings can't achieve the nearly-vertical position
Waspy keeps them in. The robot head (or actually the "mutant
head" -- early BWs had two optional heads, one normal, the other
a "mutant"; Waspy and Tarantulas both used the "mutant" head
on the show) is rounder and more flattened than the CGI version. 
  Transforming him is quite simple compared to most BWs his
size: the bug head splits and folds down onto his chest; his robot
arms uncurl from beneath him; the lower two segments of his
insect legs fold together to form his lower legs; his waist swings
up below his torso -- and that's it, assuming you want to be
show-realistic and stick with the mutant head. Open panels on the
front and back and you can rotate the mutant head around,
exchanging it for the robot head -- which is very G1-esque, and
actually looks more like an Autobot than anything. It REALLY
makes him look like a different character, especially considering
the new colors... amazing what a change of heads can do for a
toy.  The mutant head is pretty ugly by comparison... if it werent'
for the show, it would never see the light of day again.
  About the only trick is to remember to rotate the middle segment
of the insect legs 180 degrees, or you'll have a Waspy without
working knee joints.  The way the lower legs fold together is nice,
actually; it uses the ball joint from the middle segment, but the
lower segment surrounds and encloses the whole thing.
  Two missiles for the gun store in his wings; unlike many BW
storage gimmicks, this one works very well, completely securing
the missiles. 
  And that's about it.  He's not a spectacular toy; however, if you're
a Waspinator fan (and let's face it, most of us BW watchers are
Waspinator fans) and you missed him the first time around, you'll
definately wanna pick one up.  And maybe some green paint while
you're at it.
Robert Powers of the Ever-Changing .sig _
|  Counting the days till Labor Day weekend... |

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