Transformers Review: Platinum Grimlock (Age of Extinction Voyager)

Intro:
            When the first Transformers movie was in the works, and when various iconic character names were thrown around, there were a few names that were constantly mentioned: on the Decepticon’s side, we had Shockwave, Soundwave, the Constructicons, Soundwave, Skywarp and Thundercracker; while for the Autobots, we had Omega Supreme, Wheeljack, Grimlock and his Dinobots.
            While some of those names mentioned did eventually make it to the big screen, some never did. The Dinobots were probably the biggest names that never made it to the original trilogy. Can’t say that I blame them because these were the dinosaurs-based characters, and it was probably difficult to find a storyline that would fit them.
            Anyways, fast forward to 2014, TransFans all over the world have finally gotten what they wished for – Grimlock and his band of merry dinos are finally here, and what better way to start things off with Grimlock.
            The Platinum Edition Voyager-class Grimlock is sold in a twin-pack with Optimus Prime (read the review here).
            I have to say, I love G1 Grimlock, and there was no doubt that he was the physically toughest Autobot there ever was, to the extent of being even more powerful than Optimus Prime himself. So, I was looking forward toward AOE Grimlock action figure, but whether or not I’d be getting the Leader-class Grimlock remains to be seen.
            Anyways, without further ado, let’s get on with the review.

Alternate Mode:
            Traditionally, Grimlock transforms into a Tyrannosaurus Rex, although at some point, he had turned into a Ford Mustang and even an excavator. Luckily for us, Michael Bay decided to stick to the T-Rex concept… or did he?
Grimlock and Optimus Prime
            Conceptually, yes, Grimlock is supposed to be a T-Rex, but did anybody actually look at it? I don’t know about you guys, but Grimlock sure looks more like a dog, rather than a T-Rex. Unless all the paleontologists were wrong, since when that a T-Rex ever had ears?!
Isn't that dog ears? O_o
AOE Grimlock vs Classic Grimlock
            If you ask me, Grimlock looks like a bipedal, heavily mutated/deformed dog, with lizard claws and friggin’ tiny front legs!
Grimlock vs Marvel's Devil Dinosaur from the Savage Lands
            Since this is the Platinum-edition, Grimlock has chromed parts all over his body, namely the lower jaw, head plate, and back plate.

            One thing that is unique with Grimlock is the eyes. At first, I thought it was translucent greenish eyes, but after a closer look, it is actually another piece of plastic within that has a leaf-ish/ web-ish feel to it. I can’t recall any transformers figures having utilized this concept before.
The eyes, as well as the trigger to close the mouth
            Articulation-wise, there’s really not much to talk about. There is no neck movement. The jaws are always opened. There is a trigger on the left side of his neck, that when you push it, the jaw closes. So you do those chomping actions.

            The tiny arms are on ball joints. By the way, since we’re talking about the arms, I don’t really like how they design the entire portion around the hands. There should’ve been some sort of plating to cover the sides of the dinosaur mode. It just look too awkward for me.
            Anyways, back to the articulations; the hips are on swivel-hinge joints, the knees bend and that’s all. The tail doesn’t wag… zilch… nothing… nada…
            Another thing about the figure is how the chrome plate on his back doesn’t seem to lock in anywhere. It just sits there in place, thanks to gravity.
The Chrome Plate on his back do not lock in
            Also, there is a notch on the tail piece that is supposed to slot into corresponding openings on the upper plastic piece. Unfortunately, they do not clip in or lock in, so at any moment that you are fiddling with Grimlock in this mode, they just might accidentally dislodge themselves.
Tail piece do not lock in
            Nice overall looks, but everything feels limited in this mode.  

Robot Mode:
            The robot mode looks nice. He looks big, buff and tough.
            The robot mode kind of reminds me of some knights from the Middle Ages Europe. The feet, somehow, kind of remind me of Sinbad’s boots. For some reasons, this seems to be a recurring theme amongst the AOE Dinobots.

            While the robot mode look okay, there are so many kibbles all over the, i.e. the T-Rex head, the dino’s small claws and feet etc. The T-Rex head as shoulder pads I can still let it by, because it actually turned out quite okay.
Grimlock and Optimus Prime
            Standing next to Optimus Prime, Grimlock looks to be the beefier one and definitely looks the tougher one.
Awesome Head Sculpt
            I kind of dig the head sculpt, which kind of reminds me of some of those Japanese chogokin robots ala Grandizer etc. The spikes on the boots look awesome as well.
            Articulation-wise, Grimlock is a far cry from Optimus. He has somehow substituted most of his articulations for visual characteristics. The head is on a combinational hinge-swivel joint. Theoretically, the head should be able to move in all directions, but due to the placement of the T-Rex’s ears, you might have problems in positioning the head.
Claw attaches to the main arm via knob and slot
            What essentially were the T-Rex’s legs are now his arms. As for the wrists, in theory he isn’t supposed to have any articulations, due to how the claw pieces attached to the main arms. However, by unlocking the connections, the wrists are unleashed.
            The legs, which are essentially the T-Rex’s tail, is connected to the hips via universal joints. The legs rotate slightly below the hips; the knees bend; and there is an inward ankle joints. The aforesaid ankle joints kinda looked awkward, because they just felt a little bit too high.
            Grimlock comes armed with a spike-mallet whatever-youmacallit thingy. Although the top part of the mallet can be detached from the handle, I don't really see the point. Also, the mallet and its handle can only be slotted in at a specific direction -- as to why, I have no idea.
            The articulation may not really that phenomenal, but you can still pose him in various different positions.
            In the end, the robot mode might look good, but unfortunately, at the expense of the articulations.

Summary:
            This Grimlock figure is really a mixed baggage. Aesthetically, Grimlock is an eye-candy – he just looks so damn good, but unfortunately articulation-wise, he’s no Optimus Prime.
            Still, we are talking about Grimlock here – he’s everybody’s favorite T-Rex. Seeing as how Grimlock is widely marketed everywhere, it means that he is probably going to feature heavily in the movies.
            Definitely should not be missed by any Dinobots’ fans.
            Recommended.


Rating – 8/10
 TeenCom

1 comment:

  1. The "ears"/"horns" are meant to be folded down for beast mode... eliminates the "dog" look...

    ReplyDelete