Sorry about missing Wednesday, but the lingering symptoms of Covid mixed with being back at work is wearing me out at night. And since I didn’t make it back for my usual midweek review, I thought I’d double up for today with a look at two more Studio Series Transformers. I’ve had Wreck-Gar kicking around and waiting to be opened for about a year, which absolutely blows my mind with how fast time is going! And since I just had Junkheap hit my doorstep last week, let’s just have a look at them both in one go!
I only have a boxed shot of Wreck-Gar, but both figures are in the fairly similar Studio Series packaging, and even share similar character art. The big difference in packaging is that Junkheap does not have the window, so your figure is exposed to the filthy peanut butter encrusted fingers of any toddler that decides to wander by and touch the toy you’re going to buy. How is that fair? That little shit can’t afford this toy? Anyway, I got mine from Amazon, so hopefully it just sat in a casepack until it was ready to ship out. Wreck-Gar is a prime example of how collecting Transformers can be frustrating to me, because it feels like I’m constantly replacing figures with improved versions. He was released in Reveal The Shield back in 2011, Power of the Primes in 2018, and in between those, I even picked up a third party version by DX9 Toys in 2017. The 2018 release is the only one I still own, and he’ll probably be going bye-bye after I’m done with this review. Let’s start with Wreck-Gar and his alt mode!
So, I’m not terribly pleased with this motorcycle mode, but I don’t really hate it either. It’s pretty damn ugly, but then he is a Junkion, so I guess I can kind of forgive that. I think my biggest problem is that it looks worse than the original G1 toy’s alt mode. It’s very possible that I don’t have all the parts lined up properly, but then this was a pretty frustrating transformation, and just wasn’t worth the end result. I do like the colors, as they match the traditional animated look of the motorcycle pretty well. The studs on the wheels are cool, as are the big spikes jutting off the sides, and the dual blasters under the windshield. There’s some nice detail on the console gauges, although the handlebars on my toy are warped. You can store his weapon by pegging it into the back of the bike, but I think it looks kind of goofy back there. Finally, you get a pair of fold out kick-stands to keep Wreck-Gar sitting upright.
If you have a f’ugly alt mode, than you pretty much have to have a great robot mode, and it’s clear here that the motorcycle was sacrificed for the robot. This figure looks fantastic, and certainly outclasses any of the previous releases that have passed through my collection, even that expensive third-party figure, which in fairness was a remold/repaint of the Gobot Leader Cy-Kill. The proportions here are excellent, and yes, I even like his Popeye-style forearms! The placement of the bike’s saddlebags on his hips is perfect for him to store extra bits or maybe some Energon Goodies. The spikes protruding from his knees and forearms provide places to put his wheels. I like to counter-balance them with one on each side, so one on the right knee, and the other on the left forearm as a shield. The bulbous gas tank from the motorcycle fills in his back, making this figure look just as solid from behind as he does from the front. And you have to love those nipple cannons, and the fact that they’re ball jointed and can be aimed independently, which is just delightfully creepy.
The head sculpt here is right on the money. I liked the Power of the Primes portrait as well, but that head was way too small for the body. Here we get a bigger and bolder noggin with all the personality of the animated design. The faked out front of the motorcycle makes for a great looking “helmet” and the facial features are sharp and well fleshed out. I’ve still never completely reconciled with the introduction of facial “hair” on my Transformers, but I have to admit, it looks great here. The red eye paint is very clean with some sharp black outlines.
Wreck-Gar comes with his pinwheel of death, which is a lot better than previous versions of this curious weapon. I really dig the way he looks with the weapon in one hand and the wheel shield on the opposing arm. Let’s move on to Junkheap…
I won’t spend a whole lot of time with Junkheap, as he is basically just a remold and repaint of Wreck-Gar. The motorcycle has additional side plates, and the piece under the windshield section has been remolded to omit the nipple cannons and just have some pipes angling out from the center. The pylons holding the front wheel are also new sculpts. The windshield area is more squared off this time and lacks the swooshes on the sides. I would have thought the added side plates would improve the look, but I think this one actually looks worse than Wreck-Gar’s alt mode. They also add a little more frustration to the transformation. The deco shares some common strokes with Wreck-Gar, mainly in the brown and orange, but it adds more gray to the mix, making him not as bright and vibrant, but it’s still a good looking deco. The transparent windscreen is also now tinted blue.
And just like Wreck-Gar, the robot mode here is absolutely fantastic! The changes I mentioned in the motorcycle mode are reflected here on the chest and arms. It’s honestly a lot more different than I would have expected, even if all of those changes are confined to the upper body. You can still position his wheels in the same manner as Wreck-Gar, but I like to keep both of Junkheap’s wheels on his legs, because of the options you now have with those side plates on the arms.
The side plates can reside on the shoulders, or be swing down to the forearms. While both look good, I prefer to keep the right plate up on the shoulder and have the left plate on the forearm, as it can serve as either a shield or a blaster. Either way, it just adds to the options you have to customize the look of this guy and make him all the bit more different than Wreck-Gar.
As with Wreck-Gar, Hasbro did a really nice job on this head sculpt. Since the “helmet” is supposed to be a mass-shifted front of the bike, it looks more squared off here. I also dig the shock absorber horns that protrude from the sides. These are ball jointed so you can adjust them to be rather expressive. The face features some sharp details and the oversized goggles are painted red.
Junkheap comes with the exact same Death Pinwheel as Wreck-Gar. I actually wouldn’t have minded a new weapon here, but considering all the other changes, it’s fine.
While I certainly do wish the motorcycle modes were a little tighter and looked a bit better, the robot modes here are more than enough to win me over. That is how I display most of these anyway, and I don’t see myself transforming these guys a lot in the future. I think these are some absolutely great looking robots. They’re big, hefty, and fun to play with, and I think Hasbro did just enough in the remolding to make them each stand on their own. I probably wouldn’t mind seeing a third Junkion created from this mold, and I’ll confess I was even tempted to pick up a second Junkheap, just to give Wreck-Gar a pair of them to fight with. But for now, I’m thrilled to add these Junkions to my 86 Movie shelf!