Bruticus - RID - Figure

After fruitless checks at Wal-Mart and TRU last week, I finally bought this puppy at a comic book shop that sells tons of toys. Meant paying a little extra, but what the hell, it was my birthday. I'm spoiling myself. B)

Beast Mode
One of only three BW/BM toys to have a mythical beast form, Bruticus is a cerberus, a monstrous three-headed hound. In Greek mythology, Cerberus was the guardian of the doorway to the underworld realm of Hades, so powerful and ferocious that only Hercules could best it. From middle snout to tips of tails, Bruticus measures 18 cm(7"). His main colours are red, black, and yellow, with some purple parts and blue-silver and gold detailing. While the red and black work fine together, the yellow is really quite awful, and gives the toy the appearance of a prototype or worse, a knockoff. Dark gray would have made much more sense than yellow. And although Bruticus has lots of details sculpted into him, there's surprisingly few highlights on him. Compare him with a beautifully painted toy like Sky-Byte and the difference becomes painfully apparent. On top of that, Bruticus has some big gaping holes through his mid-section.

On to the heads. The left head is black and yellow with green eyes and a purple crest. The middle head has large puffy red cheeks, blue eyes with red brows, and long ears that look like bat wings. The right head has a spike and a non-moving sawblade mounted behind it, pink eyes, and a red muzzle so large that it obscures the eyes from view. The head looks much better and proportional with the muzzle flipped up, and I think I may try to remove the muzzle altogether if possible. Bruticus's tail splits into a drillbit, a knife, and an axe. His left front leg has a manacle and a bit of swinging chain attached to it, as though he just broke out of captivity.

Poseability is iffy. The heads all move, but the two outer ones have a tendency to come apart. The right and middle heads can open their mouths, but the left head has its mouth permanently open. The rear limbs are moulded in "ready-to-pounce" mode, so there's really not a lot of poses you can put Bruticus in. His triple tail can wag.

Fairly complex. The front limbs flip, stretch, and rotate around to become the robot legs. The three heads become the robot head and arms, and the rear limbs fold up against the robot's back.

Robot Mode
Bruticus is just under 15 cm(6") tall in robot form. He's something of a landmark TF, in that he has three faces in this mode. His head rotates manually so that he can employ one face or the other, or the other. His primary face, which is just the hound face without the cheeks, is black with red markings and silver fangs. His left face is black with pink eyes, and looks like a big cat. His right face is red with green eyes, and looks like a robotic Porky Pig. I kid you not. In addition, the primary face can swing upwards so that he's employing two faces at once. Double the face, double the screams of horror. Bruticus's Spark crystal is mounted on the back of his head. Although he was originally supposed to have been part of Battle For The Spark, whatever gimmick he had has been removed, unfortunately. His chest plate swings up to reveal mechanical bits, where may once have been the gimmick.

The other thing that sets Bruticus apart from other TFs are his four arms. The outer pair unfolds from the rear limbs of the cerberus. The left fist holds a dagger, the right fist a cudgel. His left inner fist holds an axe blade. Finally, his tail can detach to become a flail held loosely in his right inner fist. The big red muzzle helps to hold the flail, and I suspect it was added partly for this purpose. The four arms concept is certainly a neat and fun one, and it adds to his whole mythical appearance. Whereas he was Greek in beast mode, he's Indian in robot mode, an evil monster like Kali or Ravana. I reckon it'd be pretty scary to see this guy coming at you from the shadows, his arms waving slowly back and forth and chanting, "Yama, yama, yama."

Bruticus is articulated at the neck, inner shoulders, elbows, wrist, waist, hips, knees, and ankles. His outer arms can bend at the shoulders, wrists and in the wrong direction at the elbows as well. Unfortunately some of his joints are kinda floppy, and his shoulder pads pop off with ease.

Overall, Suspsy Sez
With some more highlights, gray instead of yellow, and a Spark gimmick, Bruticus could have been one of the best toys of the year. As it stands, he's still a good toy, just not a great one. The beast mode looks nice, but isn't as stable as I'd like it to be. Transformation is fairly complex for a Deluxe, and it doesn't help that the instructions are seriously lacking in text. Robot mode looks truly hellish, with good play value. In all, a recommended buy. 8/10


"Who goes there?" -Bruticus

DateOctober 13th 2001  
Score 8 stars (8 out of 10)  

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