Friday, 20 March 2015

TransFormers (Movie) Arcee G1 Colour Edition

(Femme-Bot Friday #10)
Aside from a 'Battle Damaged' repaint, the first live action movie Arcee didn't get any repaints outside of Takara Tomy's territories, which I've always thought was a great shame. It wasn't a licensed vehicle so, theoretically, Hasbro could do as they pleased with it. Granted, my high opinion of the mold doesn't mean it must have been commercially successful, but considering the secondary market for the Takara Tomy repaints, some folks out there must like it.

This was the first of the repaints I laid my hands on, and it was the easiest to come by, despite being created specifically for a Japanese toy show over a year after the movie came out...

Vehicle Mode:
I have to say that first impressions weren't that great. Despite being predominantly white, this model somehow conspires to seem too pink. It uses two shades of pink plastic, two shades of pink paint and some translucent blue plastic for the headlights and windscreen. The darker pink paint isn't quite as bright as it appears in my photos, but the paler pink plastic somehow doesn't seem especially solid. The end result is a bike that looks very strange... it'd almost be more of a G1 Minerva than a G1 Arcee homage, had they gone for a full-on red rather than the darker pink.

There are several common decorative features between the two versions of Arcee, for example, the use of silver paint is identical. The RC 1100 marking appears in the same places, albeit now in pink. Both models have their indicator lights painted orange, and both have the same movie-referencing numberplate. It's a shame they didn't make a new one specific to the Wonder Festival 2008 Winter, but I guess that would have really eaten into the paint budget.

One rather unfortunate feature of this figure is that mine came without its missile/exhaust pipe, which explains its absence in these photos. I'm certain I was just unlucky as all the photos I've seen elsewhere have included the missile.

This is a pretty cool motorcycle - its proportions are better than many others - but this particular colourscheme just doesn't work for it.

Robot Mode:
I'm in two minds about robot mode. On the one hand, the G1 Arcee reference is far more apparent in his mode, even if the specific distribution of colours isn't identical. On the other hand, while the original colourscheme gave her the look of a Dominatrix, the G1 homage makes her look like a pastel-coloured lingerie model wearing knee-high pink socks... or boots...

Curiously, the robo-boobage is even more apparent (or should that be blatant) on this version due to the greater contrast between the pinks of the 'corset' and the white of the chest... and the white plastic - so often the cause of lost detail in a TransFormers toy - along with a strategic dab of the lighter pink paint, actually accentuates her cyber-cleavage.

The head sculpt goes for a very strong G1 homage, with a white 'helmet' and a pink face. Not entirely sure what the pink splodge on her head is supposed to represent (wasn't it glass on the original? One of her headlights, perhaps?), but at least they didn't see fit to paint Arcee's fearsome beak pink in an attempt to fool us into thinking she has lips. Also, her blue light piping is utterly glorious.

On aspect of her colourscheme which is rather more incongruous in robot mode than it was in vehicle mode is the black at her hips - aside from the wheels and her bike seat, that's the only place where black appears on the model.

As mentioned, my Wonder Festival Arcee arrived minus her missile, so no photos of her white-and-pink bow in firing position...

Obviously there's no need to go into transformation or the articulation - it all works, and it's a good development of the Energon Arcee system. It's not really a great success as a G1 homage because the style of model isn't conducive to G1 accuracy the way some other movie models were, but if you like the model and you like G1 homages in principle, this is well worth tracking down.

One thing I should mention, however, even if it's just another example of my misfortune with this figure, is that her shins show several fractures, as well as a rather alarming set around the pin on the right heel. This could be down to the slightly pearlescent quality of the plastic and, if it is, I should probably expect the heel, if not the lower legs, to break off eventually.

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