In the last month or so, I’ve checked a few of Hasbro’s very cool Star Wars Unleashed statues. Hasbro had a good thing going on with this line and in an effort to make lightning strike twice, they tried the same thing with Transformers. The difference? The Star Wars statues seemed like a genuine attempt to bring attractive display pieces to collectors on a budget. The Transformers statues seemed more like a quick and dirty cash grab amidst a sea of other movie related merchandise. I should be able to wrap this one up mighty quick and we can all go on with our business.
I don’t have the packaging for this wonderful object d’art any longer, but I seem to recall it coming in some sort of window box. I also need not confess to actually buying it, as it was a present from the former Mrs. FigureFan. I’m tempted to say it was well-intentioned, but unfortunately she turned out to be quite a vindictive headcase, so it could have just as easily been gifted out of spite. Anyway, the idea here is that in the true nature of the Transformers, this is actually two-Two-TWO statues in one! On one side, it’s Prime in his truck mode, but turn it around and there he is in his robot mode. You see? It’s like a Transfromer but it’s a statue!
The alt mode portion of the statue depicts Prime in his movie truck form, launching himself off a cliff against a backdrop of terrible looking translucent plastic flames. The cliff looks like it’s carved out of chocolate and there’s a huge Autobot insignia sculpted into the side. Only part of the truck is actually here because it’s partly obscured in the so-called fire. I never minded Prime being an extended front cab, but I was never a fan of this coloring. There’s way too much blue, and this statue seems to add even more. Apart from that, there are some stray splotches of paint. All in all, this looks Ok, I guess, but it’s nothing spectacular. Maybe the flipside will be better?
Nah, not really. The pose isn’t bad. Prime is bent down on one knee with a fist held out in defiance and his other arm converted into his gun. Giving Prime an arm that converts into a gun never seemed right to me. It just doesn’t fit the character. But then again, before Revenge of the Fallen I wasn’t used to seeing my childhood hero rip people’s faces off either, so I guess I need to get with the times. Either way, the statue is just being faithful to the source material, so I can’t blame it for that. In fairness, there’s a lot of sculpted detail on this guy, but it’s still not enough to effectively convey the crazy complex “bag of scissors” aesthetic of the Bayformer designs. There’s also way too much bland grey plastic here and not enough painted detail. The head is pretty unspectacular as well. The sculpt is really soft and you can’t really even see his eyes.
It’s hard to put my finger on exactly where Hasbro went wrong with this piece. Sure, aesthetically this is far from my favorite version of Prime, but I was still able to appreciate his Leader Class movie toys. Ultimately, I think most of the blame lies in the super soft sculpt not being able to capture the intricate design. Had this been a statue of old school G1 Sunbow Prime, I think it could have been spectacular. In concept, the whole turnaround gimmick showing off both modes may not have been inherently bad, but the execution just doesn’t result in a piece that I’m all that keen on displaying. And so, Prime here resides on the tip top shelf of display case in the corner. Mostly out of sight and out of mind.