Thursday, 17 May 2012

Revenge of the Fallen Back Road Brawl (Toys'R'Us Exclusive) Mixmaster

OK, this'll be a quickie, considering I've already written up the original iteration of this mold... Basically, G1 repaints of movie models are one of my favourite things. Sometimes they work, sometimes they don't. While Revenge of the Fallen may not have given us the Devastator we wanted, and it might have been excessively coy about whether the Constructicons truly existed as a team, Hasbro knows what the long-term fans want: if they use a G1 name, they have to release a version of the model with the G1 colourscheme. Mixmaster was just gagging for this treatment.

Vehicle Mode:
And there is just so much to love about the vehicle mode now it's in Constructicon Green. Not least, the simple fact that it seems to have a rather more extensive paint job. Of course, that's not actually true, it's just been used more strategically. Rather than having massive amounts of the barrel painted, there's only a series of red stripes running round the middle. There are yellow-and-black stripes running over the rear wheels. There's silver paint over the entire front grille, the sun visors on the cab, and the 'tool box' things on the sides. The hubcaps are covered in a goldy-coppery paint which doesn't appear to be used elsewhere... The windows and headlights are molded in transparent orange, so the feet inside the cab aren't as well-hidden here as on the original.

Overall, while the colourscheme isn't necessarily believable for a contemporary construction vehicle, it suits the mold well.

Oh, and what's that..? "Ol' Lefty" stamped on above the front wheels? A cute 'easter egg' for the G1 fans, since Mixmaster used to form Devastator's left leg.

Robot Mode:
Here's where the G1 colourscheme comes into its own. Like that original Mixmaster, vehicle mode is predominantly green, and robot mode introduces the traditional Constructicon Purple into the mix... But it doesn't end there, because there's another shade of purple painted onto the chest, along with silver touches on the torso, lower legs and toes.

The biggest surprise is the new head sculpt. Legend has it that Mixmaster was originally intended to be one of the Autobots in the movie continuity, and this sculpt is based on the 'Autobot Mixmaster' design - it's a fairly friendly sort of face... slightly ancient-looking, but with a benevolent smile. Not exactly suited to a Decepticon, even the way this has been painted, but the head does suit the mold, at least.

The 'Back Road Brawl' Toys'R'Us exclusive set was an absolute must-have, for me. Not only did it take the excellent Longarm mold and give it a no-brainer repaint as Hoist, but it took the flawed-but-brilliant Mixmaster mold and turned it into this awesome homage to his namesake from the original TransFormers gestalt.

Despite this being only the second usage of this mold, there are a few extra problems versus its original mass release - mainly in that the smokestacks are far more inclined to pop out of their sockets during transformation or posing. The roof parts on the feet are similarly inclined and it's possible that his enormous backside is slightly less firmly fixed in place. There's also something about the cement chute and the ladder... they don't seem to move quite right on this version...

On the whole, though, these minor flaws don't bother me... I just geek out over the wondrous homage.

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