With '80's nostalgia running high and Takara's reissues a roaring success, it's no surprise that Hasbro would follow suit with their Commemorative Series of Transformers. Starscream here is one of only two toys in the second series of Hasbro reissues. Retailing at $34.99, he is well worth his the price. Especially considering how much an original goes for these days.
Function: Decepticon Air Commander
"Conquest is made of the ashes of one's enemies."
Starscream seeks to replace Megatron as leader. Ruthless, cold-blooded and cruel. Considers himself the most sophisticated and handsome of all Decepticon robots. Believe Decepticon robots should rely more on guile and speed rather than brute force to defeat the Autobots. Fastest flier of the group, able to reach Mach 2.8 and an altitude of 52 miles. Shoots cluster bombs and null-rays that disrupt the flow of electricity. Very good at what he does, but sometimes overrates himself.
Strength: 7 Intelligence: 7 Speed: 9 Endurance: 7
Rank: 5 Courage: 8 Firepower: 7 Skill: 7
I rather like the way Starscream is packed up for the new millennium. All the necessities are there; the original logo and Decepticon symbol, the artwork, the original box art and battle art on the back, the steps of transformation from start to finish, and the tech specs which are clearly not meant to be "clipped and saved" anymore. The toy can be seen quite clearly through the window in the box, even more so when the character artwork is flipped out. With some tilting of the box, the weapons, tail fins assemblies, landing gear, and fists can be seen along with the hints of a parts tree underneath Starscream that hold the attachments for his weapons.
I'll just touch briefly on the inserts. The instructions are a nice quality and depict the actual toy in black and white, rather than an illustration as has been the norm for the main Transformers line for some time now. The sticker sheet is completely in Japanese, right down to the "22" designation from the Japan line. Also included is a one-sheet plugging Rhino's DVD and VHS releases with season two part one reported being released in the Fall of 2002. Seems a little outdated, eh?
To complete the jet mode, add the tail fin and rudder assemblies and attach the landing gear under the cockpit. The weapons can be attached to the underside of either wings and can house either the null-rays or the cluster bombs, which look more like cluster missiles due to bringing the toy up to current safety standards. Measuring at 8 1/4" from the tip of the nose to the back-most part of the rudders and with a 6" wingspan, Starscream is ready for flight. The landing gear consists of a total of three sets of metal wheels, two in the back and on in the front. All roll very well. He also features an opening cockpit for any Diaclone drivers you might have laying about or it can be used to store the front landing gear. Starscream is mostly gray with red highlights on his fuselage, wings and tail fins. The tail fins, engines and nose cone are a dark blue as are the rear landing gear. Decepticon insignias are proudly worn on both wings and the nosecone.
To transform Starscream into robot mode, first remove wings, tail fins, rudders, weapons, and front landing gear. Push underneath the fuselage, just behind the cockpit to reveal the robot arms. Bring them around to the side and bend the nose cone down and through the opening the arms created. Bring the front-most part of the nose cone up and swing back to reveal the most handsome face of all Decepticons. Flip the rear landing gear down to form the feet. Reattach the wings, tail fins and rudders and attach the fists to the arms. The weapons may go on either arm.
In all actuality, you don't need to remove anything but the landing gear and weapons. By rotating the wings ninety degrees, you can free the arms just as easily. You can then rotate the wings to your liking. Flipping the rudders ninety degrees also saves you a step, though it will eventually wear on the stickers on the tail fins and leaves the rudders looking upside down in robot mode.
Standing at almost 5 1/2" in height, Starscream is now ready to take on the Autobots... or Megatron. While there is still mostly gray in his color scheme, his upper torso is mostly red with blue highlighting his arms, feet and lower legs. Sadly, Starscream only has two points of articulation; his shoulders. They can rotate all the way around and even be made to point outward. You could say he has ankle joints in that his feet can flip up due to the transform, but that may be stretching things.
Starscream is a great toy whether you're a G1-fan or just into the '80's nostalgia. His many parts and simplistic design may not appeal to some fans, especially those used to more articulation and less potential to lose essential parts. But, for those, like me, who never had a Starscream toy back in the day and can't afford the inflated prices of the original version, this toy is a must.
|Reviewer||Richard C. Mistron|
|Date||February 15th 2003|
|Score||(8 out of 10)|