Yes, it is indeed Transformers Thursday again and today I’m checking out the last figure I have from the Skids/Goldfire/Waspinator/Dreadwing wave. Dreadwing is a repaint of Stealth Bomber Megatron from what I believe was the last wave of comic packs. It’s a figure that I thought was pretty neat, but I was never sold on it as being Megatron. Nope, not even after having read the comic. If you want to start out in the proper context you can find that review HERE. And, holy shit, has it really been over a year since that figure came out??? Where does the time go? Anyway, I’m hoping that a new name, a fresh coat of paint, and some tweaks to the mold might make this release go down easier.
As always the concept behind these IDW Comic Pack’s is a thing of beauty. The figure comes packaged in his robot mode with a G1 inspired card and a reprint comic book serving as the character art. I can sum up this whole idea in one word: Yum! Besides being based off the IDW portrayal of the character, Dreadwing is also an homage to the Generation 2 toy, a tactical bomber bundled with a smaller jet named Smokescreen. I never did own that G2 toy, but at one point I owned the sexy black Japanese Beast Wars repaint of BB with Starscream, and I still own the Universe repaint of Dreadwing and Smokejumper, which is a far less interesting deco, but still a wonderful set of toys. Anyway, let’s kick things off with Dreadwing’s alt mode.
This stealth bomber alt mode looked good great before and still looks great here. If it’s your first time with the mold, you may find that getting all the panels to line up properly can be a bit of a chore as some of the tabs are prone to popping out unless you have everything positioned absolutely perfectly. Yes, there are a lot of seams running through the aircraft’s hull, but I find that it works well as panel lining and isn’t as terribly unsightly as it would be if it were on a car alt mode. There’s a tiny flip down landing gear on the front, but the aircraft really doesn’t need it to stand up properly.
While I think the black deco on the Megatron looked really good and certainly more appropriate, I can’t help but favor the purple and silver of this G2-inspired deco. It’s actually not as garish as some of the G2 decos, for that was a time when I’m convinced Hasbro design teams were getting high by huffing the fumes of neon highlighter markers. The deco is further enhanced by the bright red paint on the windows and the awesome G2-style Decepticon insignia neatly printed on either side of the cockpit area. Even the tips of the wings, where the translucent red plastic shows through the cracks, looks cool to me. It’s like this guy is pulsating with Energon.
I find transforming this mold to be a fidgety affair, thanks mostly to the flipping involved with the torso hings, but he’s much easier going into robot mode than the other way around. Parts-former alert! You do have to detach his wing tips, as they become the two halves of his arm cannon. His robot mode features a wide upper body with really broad shoulders and not much of a waist. Nonetheless, I think he looks great as long as he’s posed with a wide stance. I really dig the jet intakes on his shoulders and the way the cockpit splits to form his torso. Hasbro also graced this guy with a brand new head sculpt that is a perfect love letter to the original G2 toy. The high gloss paint on his new noggin looks great, I only wish that plate behind his head didn’t inhibit the light piping for his red visor. I did manage to get it to pop in few photos, but it wasn’t as easy as it could have been. Oh well, it’s still a fabulous portrait.
In robot mode, Dreadwing’s deco pays an even stronger homage to the G2 toy’s coloring. You get the same purple, silver, and red only now with an extra dose of mint blue-green in the limbs. The crazy decos of the 90’s are usually love it or hate it affairs. Personally, I have a lot of fondness for the Transformers decos, but not so much when they applied this sort of thing to the GI Joe line. Either way, I think this figure’s colors are gorgeous.
Dreadwing features some great articulation. The shoulders are ball jointed, the elbows are hinged, and he has swivels in the biceps. His legs are ball jointed at the hips, hinged at the knees, and have swivels in the thighs. He also has a ball joint in the neck. The only thing I find conspicuously absent is a swivel at the waist. I should also note that the joints on my figure are unusually tight, which makes for a pleasant surprise.
I’m still on the fence over this mold’s arm cannon. Sometimes I dig it a lot and sometimes I think it looks like a forced use of kibble and takes away from the symmetry of the figure. I will say that I like it better on this figure because it isn’t trying to be a misguided homage to Megatron’s fusion cannon. In the end, I wish there was a way you could peg the two halves on his back just to get it out of the way when not using it as a cannon. Nonetheless, I will likely end up displaying the figure with the arm cannon attached.
If I were buying these IDW Comic Packs individually, instead of as entire waves, I certainly would have been happy to pass on the Megatron in favor of Dreadwing. I think it’s a great mold and while I think both figures look good, I’m much happier seeing this figure characterized as Dreadwing rather than Megatron. But hey, that’s just me. I don’t think you can really go wrong picking up either version and I’m certainly not sorry about having the Megatron in my collection.
And that wraps up what has been a pretty solid wave of Deluxes with two great original figures (Waspinator and Skids), a damn fine repaint (Dreadwing) and a mediocre repaint (Goldfire) that at least improved on the original release. On a side note, I am once again fresh out of new Transformers and you know what that means? Yup, next week I’ll be digging my sweaty mitts into a storage tote and feeling around for an older figure to review. Actually, it might not be random this time, as I’m thinking of sending another box of Transformers to my nephew so I may dig out some figures that I’m read to let go and give them a proper send off on FFZ before I pack them up. But fear not, I should have the current wave of IDW Deluxes in a couple of weeks, along with MP-14 Red Alert, so the interlude shouldn’t last too long.