Transformers Generations: Blitzwing by Hasbro.

ARRRRRRRRRRRRRRRGHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!

That sums up my feelings for this figure. Thanks for stopping by. Don’t forget to like me on Facebook. Please contribute to my Kickstarter Project to support my Blitzwing and Springer hardcore Slash Fic Novel, Tanks for the Reach Around. See y’all tomorrow…

Oh… ok, I’ll elaborate. If a figure sucks, it’s not a big deal to me. I can either not buy it or if I did buy it, just toss it into a bin and be done with it. It sucks, why should I bother with it? I move on. But when a figure shows glimmerings of greatness… when a figure teases with potential and yet stumbles because of stupid, easily fixed design flaws, it really cheeses me off. That’s especially the case when it’s a figure based on a character I love and have strong nostalgic feelings for. I love Blitzwing for a lot of reasons. One, he was the only Triple-changer that I owned as a kid and I loved playing with him. Two, “Triple Takeover” is one of my favorite episodes of the Sunbow series. In it, Blitzwing has that one classic line of dialogue where he says to a human, “Tell me what’s on your mind or I’ll splatter it on the wall and see for myself” It’s so bewilderingly and inappropriately brutal for a children’s cartoon that it makes me smile every time I hear it. And finally, Blitzwing is a jet that turns into a tank. He dominates in both land and air. Oh yeah, and his name is Blitzwing… that’s awesome. Hasbro finally gives him a greatly needed update and they stumble on some of the stupidest little things.

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I’ve got a lot to say, so I’m not going to waste time on the packaging. I’ll cover the packaging more when I do my feature on Springer next week. Let’s just dive in. And I’m going to break tradition here and start with Blitzwing’s robot mode…

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…I think it’s fantastic. Look at him. He’s everything I would want in an update to Blitzwing. He’s well-proportioned, the treads look fine on his legs, and the sculpting and painted detail that flanks the cockpit on his chest resembles the stickers on the old toy. You also get some display options, like whether or not to point his shoulder wings out or fold them back (I prefer the later) and you can choose to display him with his tank barrel up or back. I think both look fine, but my old G1 toy was so loose from play that it usually defaulted to the down position. Blitzwing comes with a sword and a gun, both of which can be utilized in his alt modes. I’m not often a fan of swords with my Transformers, but I really like the sculpt on Blitzwing’s sword.

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Yes, Blitzwing has a controversial face change gimmick. I don’t care about the extra faces. It’s an unnecessary fanwank back to the TF: Animated figure in a figure that should be a nod back to the original G1 character. The faces are too difficult to change anyway. I did it once and I thought I was going to scrape the rubbery faces off with my thumb nail. Seriously, I’m not even going to photograph them. Forget about them. Some have groused over the default G1 style face, but I’m fine with it.

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Of course, Blitzwing’s robot mode has one really shitty flaw. The shoulders do not stay pegged in. If I so much as touch his arms, they unpeg and flop around. I’ve tried fiddling with them. I’ve tried Peaugh’s trick, which sadly doesn’t work on my figure. I’ve even tried gumming them up with blue tack. Nothing works. If you squeeze the shoulders while manipulating his arms, they stay in place, but anything else and the entire shoulder assembly just crumbles apart. A simple tab that actually snapped into place would have fixed this whole fatal issue.

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Let’s do Blitzwing’s jet mode next, because next to the problem shoulders, it’s here where I find the figure stumbles the most. For a Triple-changer, I think the jet mode looks pretty good, It was really tough for me to get everything to peg in the way it’s supposed to, but after a couple of times, I finally got it down. If you don’t do it exactly right the arms that make up the back of the aircraft constantly want to pop out and the instructions aren’t a whole lot of help. I’m also not really keen on the way his feet and rear wings just hang off the back on ball joints. You constantly have to adjust them to keep them looking right. I do, however, like the way you can clip his sword to his back to fill up what would otherwise be an unsightly hollow area, and you can even plug his gun on top of that to give him some extra firepower. Like I said, this is not a bad jet mode for a Triple-changer. So what’s the problem?

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The f’cking rubbery nosecone. It simply will not close up over his giant spring-loaded head no matter what I do. It never closes completely and given a little time it will default to the mess you see above. Fortunately, there’s a cheap fix for this…

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Yup, take off Blitzwing’s head. It slides right out. So, yeah… I have to decapitate him in order to transform him, and even then the nosecone doesn’t really lock up all that well. Here’s where I think Hasbro ‘s intrepid band of designers should have reasoned: “It’s very probable that the fans would rather have a robot with a head small enough to transform properly over one with a terribly executed face change gimmick.”  Seriously, I don’t mind the gimmick being there, but obviously if they had omitted it, the head could have been downsized enough to make the transformation work. And why make the entire nosecone out of that shitty rubber and not just the tip like on other Transformer jets? Ok, let’s move on to the tank mode.

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I’ve heard people ragging on Blitzwing’s tank mode, but honestly, I think it works Ok. Again, he’s a Triple-changer and I’m willing to forgive certain design flaws. It pegs together fairly well and since the nosecone is concealed under the tank’s body, it tends to work for me a little better than the jet mode. The turret will turn, although it pivots awkwardly toward the front. You can plug his gun into the top and the barrel will fire a missile if you slide it back. There are peg holes on the side if you want to just plug his sword in there rather than have it loose.

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And so, my beloved Blitzwing… one of my most anticipated Transformers figures in a long while, turned out to be a bitter disappointment. Still, I am not in any way sorry I bought him. He looks AMAZING standing on the shelf in robot mode, and to be honest, that’s what he’ll spend most of his time doing anyway. In robot mode, he looks like everything I wanted in an update of the character. But I hate to look at a toy on my shelf and have to think about how poorly designed it is and what a bother it is to transform and know that if I pick him up and play with him his shoulders will fall apart. I’m tempted to buy another and just glue his shoulders in place. It’ll cripple his transformation, but at least I can play around with him in robot mode. Then again, I really don’t want to reward Hasbro for such shitty engineering. I think the saddest thing about Blitzwing is that there’s nothing wrong with this figure that couldn’t have been easily fixed had he spent a little more time on the drawing board.

4 comments on “Transformers Generations: Blitzwing by Hasbro.

  1. kind of there with you, Tank is pretty cool save how he looks on the back…but aside from that I share your over all opinion…plus…it’s freaking Blitzwing, one of the coolest concepts…

  2. I picked up Springer off Amazon but held off on Blitzwing as I caught wind of the shoulder issue. I’ll get this guy when they repaint him and hopefully re-engineer him. I love G1 don’t get me wrong but I’ld rather get a correctly engineered repainted brother then a floppy G1 painted mess. Unlike most fanboys I’m a fan of a well engineered puzzle first and the characters second. All the other supposed TransFans I know fall over themselves for the “character” that Hasbro slapped on the box (and associated paint scheme) which is nice and all.

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