The Dark of the Moon figures have hit retailers full force this week and Hasbro is bringing the big guns. There’s a bewildering amount of toys for the line, although, if you’ve been in Target recently it looks like Disney’s Cars 2 won the marketing battle for the most real estate. I resisted the urge to fill a cart with Transformers today and instead just picked up the one figure I was looking forward to most in the initial assortment… Megatron. Why Megatron? He’s gotten the short end of the transforming stick in the first two movies, so I was really excited to finally see him getting a legitimate alt mode, instead of just something that looks like an HR Giger inspired horseshoe crab with a gun on it. Ok, let’s check him out.
Here’s my first look at the new DotM packaging. OMG, why does the box seem so tiny? Well, we’ll get to that in a bit. The artwork is a big difference from the last two movies, and I like it a lot. It just makes more sense to have a dark space motif on my Transformers packages instead of a bunch of hieroglyphics. As a Voyager Class, Megatron comes in a window box and packaged in his robot mode. His bio is now on the side of the package and the back panel shows photos of the toy in both modes as well as the character’s specs. There’s a Try Me hole cut out in the window that lets you see how the Mech Tech weapon converts. But don’t let the Try Me thing fool you, the toy does not feature any electronics.
Despite being packaged in his robot mode, I’m actually going to start by looking at Megsy’s vehicle mode. He’s a grimey looking tanker truck, which is an alt mode I never would have thought would suit Megatron very well, but in this case I kind of like it. For some reason, I just like the idea of both Prime and Megatron being trucks. But before getting into the truck itself, let’s talk size and scale. Megatron is tiny. Check out a picture of him besides another Voyager toy, the original Movie Ironhide, and a Revenge of the Fallen Deluxe, Bumblebee.
Not only is he way too small to be in scale with Voyager Ironhide, but he’s even way too small against a Deluxe car from the last movie. Now, I tend to be pretty leniant with scale in Transformers, since Takara and Hasbro have played fast and loose with scale ever since the G1 days, but DotM Megatron just seems way too small. He should have been a Leader Class, and that would have at least made him displayable besides some of the Autobots from the last two movies. Ok, so we are discussing three separate lines, and just because the first movies’ toys synched so well with Revenge of the Fallen doesn’t mean DotM toys should do the same. Just be prepared for the surprise that Megatron is, relatively speaking, a damn small toy.
That all having been said, I do like his truck mode a lot. He’s a nasty grey and green color with some paint app rust spots here and there. There’s some excellent detail work on the grill, including the Mack Truck logo and he holds together well and rolls along nicely. I’m not entirely sure why one of the windshields pops out further than the other, but it is depicted that way in the product images, so it’s obviously intentional. Megsy’s alt mode also has a soft plastic molded tarp that can be placed over the rear end of his tanker, which looks pretty cool. The Mech Tech weapon forms the front half of his tank. It can be removed and plugged into the socket on the roof of his cab to give him some extra firepower.
Transforming Megatron is a little tricky, thanks to a few shifts mostly involving his upper legs. Once you get the hang of those moves, the rest is very simple. In fact, he’s laughably easy to transform for a movieverse Voyager. Nonetheless, what you get when you’re done is the cleanest, most symetrical and most humanoid looking Megatron Bayformer we’ve seen. In fact, he looks great and what little truck kibble is here is all neatly tucked away. The Mech Tech weapons plugs into his arm as a fusion cannon, which doesn’t look that much like a fusion cannon unless you activate its Mech Tech feature. The problem is that the weapon only stays transformed when you keep the button pressed in. The tarp that covers part of Megatron’s tank forms a cloak in his robot mode with an extra bit that hooks on to form a hood. It looks pretty cool on him, and the hood serves to hide some of the right half of his face, which is battle damaged. I’m overall pretty happy with the way this guy looks and his articulation. Too bad the scale issue is still very much there when he’s in robot mode.
In defense of Megsy’s size, I don’t have any other DotM figures to compare him with. I don’t know that Voyager Prime looked about the same size, so that’s something. He’ll probably be fine alongside the Deluxe figures in robot mode, but the vehicle modes are still going to be way out of wack.
Along with Megatron’s diminished size, comes a diminished price tag. I’m used to paying about $20-23 for Voyager class Transformers, but the DotM Voyagers were only $18 each at Walmart. Not bad considering they’re brand new and not even on special or anything. I expect the price to go up a few bucks in the coming weeks. Either way, Megatron’s size and complexity make him something of a disappointment. He just feels too much like a stand alone figure that doesn’t fit into any of the previously released classes. I do like his truck mode, and I do like his robot mode, though, so he isn’t a total loss, and he’s a decent enough toy for the money.