Transformers Dark of the Moon: Starscream (Deluxe) by Hasbro

Ok, time to kick off this weekend’s Dark of the Moon Deluxe Class Trifecta, and we’re going to do it with none other than Starscream. Apart from the Cyberverse figure, I wasn’t going to buy Starscream from Dark of the Moon, but then Megatron turned out so cool and at the same time, so out of scale from my Voyager Starscream, so when I saw the new Deluxe Class Starscream hanging on the peg, I had little choice but to pick him up so I could have him toadying next to his master. Besides the scale issue, I was also really curious to see how Hasbro re-engineered the figure for the smaller scale and whether or not it was an improvement. Let’s find out.

Amazingly, this is the first DotM Deluxe I’ve featured here and thus our first look at the packaging. You get a simple card, just like previous Transformers Deluxes with Starscream mounted in his jet mode and half of his MechTech weapon beside him. The card deco here is similar to what we’ve seen on the Voyager toys and I still think the space motif is great. Starscream’s bio blurb doesn’t really do him justice. I think he’s one of my favorite characterizations in the Bay movies and instead of pointing out that he’s a simpering toady, there’s just some stuff about him never getting into a fight he can’t win. Blah.

This Deluxe version’s alt mode is pretty darn good, and in some ways even surpasses the Voyager, at least in terms not having so much excessive robot kibble. There’s still quite a bit of undercarriage, but it doesn’t look quite so much like robot parts and it all locks in place a lot better. Granted, Starscream’s Raptor mode takes a hit from his ugly MechTech Null Ray weapons, but thankfully they can easily be removed and set aside if you think they detract from the look of the aircraft. From the top down, the F-22 Raptor looks great, complete with the alien tattoos that were introduced in Revenge of the Fallen. I was not a big fan of this deco when I first saw it in the last movie, but like a lot of things about movie Starscream’s design, it’s grown on me a lot since.

Transforming Starscream is a bit of a chore the first time around, but once I did it once, it was a lot easier. It has a little in common with the larger versions, but Hasbro had to get a lot more clever to engineer it for the smaller Deluxe figure. Everything pegs together a lot better on the Deluxe and he makes for a more solid playable figure. The resulting robot mode is a really amazing little version of his big screen counterpart. Now, whether you like Starscream’s design is a whole different matter entirely. I’ve gone through three stages with this one from hating it, to accepting it, to actually kind of digging it.

Starscream’s MechTech weapons consists of two Null Ray cannons that double as swords and combine to form a long bladed pole arm. They can peg in under his wings in his Raptor mode, but as already mentioned they look pretty ungainly and the blades stick out the back. They work a lot better pegged into his arms in robot mode. Plug them together and the result reminds me a lot of the combined weapon that came with the Deluxe Starscream figure from the Energon line. It’s an OK gimmick, I guess, but this one doesn’t really endear me to the MechTech system all that much.

All in all, I’m impressed with this figure. He looks great standing next to DotM Megatron and I think the figure’s engineering has been vastly improved in this smaller scale. His robot mode is solid and sturdy, making him a lot more fun than my previous movie versions. I haven’t yet picked up the Voyager version from DotM to compare him to and I’m still on the fence over whether or not I will, since he’d only be in scale with a Leader Class Megatron that hasn’t been announced or even hinted at yet. I am, however looking forward to picking up the inevitable array of repaints of this mold that will be coming down the pike.

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