Jetstorm Ultra - Beast Machines - Figure

Largest of the Vehicon toys, Ultra Jetstorm had fans in a tizzy for months prior to his release in summer 2000. But as we've seen with Supreme Cheetor, large size a good toy does not make. Does this apply to Jetstorm as well?

Vehicle Mode
Ultra Jetstorm is MUCH bigger than his Deluxe version. He's a full 30 cm (12") long from nose to tail, with a wingspan of 25.4 cm (10"). Main colours are blue, silver, gray, and red, with yellow and orange highlights, and blue vac metal. A nice contrast to his mostly red counterpart T-Wrecks. His orange spark crystal is located beneath a small gray panel. Large jet thrusters can be seen peeking out from the shin guards on his underside.

From the forward sweeping wings to the tapering "neck" and rather bird-like cockpit, Jetstorm's almost a perfect replica of his show incarnation. His neck has three joints, one of which is connected to his missile turret, which I'll get to in a sec. Three landing struts deploy from beneath his wings and at the base of his neck. They have wheels moulded into them, but they do not spin, unfortunately. His small stabiliser fins move and his wings can sweep back (but they don't look good that way). He has those same guns mounted on either side of his cockpit. In addition, he comes with two gray "Sharkseekers," automated drones that attach to his underside via holes. The Sharkseekers are very nicely done, with sharp white teeth and red eyes that glow before a strong light. They can even turn their heads from side to side, imitating their master.

Pressing the red tab at Jetstorm's rear causes his entire tail section to spring up and act as a missile turret. At the same time, LEDs in the turret and the cockpit light up red. It's most impressive when done under dim or dark conditions. Turning the turret all the way to the left or the right, and then pulling back on it a little (the silver firing tabs need to come into contact with the small light blue tabs on his surface in order for them to work), causes his missiles to fire about a meter or so. Turning the turret also causes Jetstorm's neck to move from side to side, in a very bird-like or dinosaur-like manner.

All in all, this jet mode ranks right up there alongside G1 Jetfire's.

Very similar to that of the Deluxe version, but with a few tricks added in. His hips and legs rotate around. You've got to spring up his turret before you can rotate up the part housing his robot arms. The armour over his turret disconnects and lower forward to form his chest plate.

Robot Mode
At 26 cm (10.24") high, Jetstorm looms over most other Ultras. His turret and eyes now light up via the small button behind his head. Pretty neat effect. His missiles fire by pressing down on the silver triggers. But while his jet mode greatly resembles the show version, his robot mode does not. He's much bulkier, he's got shorter arms, and he's got missile launchers on his shoulders. Oh, and he's got legs too. His robot head, though it has more sweeping lines to it than the Deluxe does, still doesn't look very much like the one on TV. Mainframe certainly went overboard with their creative liberties.

Jetstorm is articulated at the head, shoulders, elbows (two joints), wrists, fingers, hips, thighs, knees, and feet. The fact that he's rather backheavy limits the number of good action poses you can put him in however. His fingers are designed to rotate around, so you can either make his hands look like the Deluxe version's, or give him three fingers and no thumbs, or two fingers and a single thumb. His Sharkseekers now attach via holes in his thighs. He can also grip them in his hands like weird-shaped cudgels.

One thing I don't like about this toy is his arms, which can hardly reach past his chest. Also, the triangular halves extending back from his wrists tend to get in the way somewhat, as well as being eyesores. The tabs connecting his shoulders to his torso are always popping out of place whenever I move his arms about. And while he looks good from the front, from the sides and the back, he looks like he's been hollowed out.

Oh yeah, the placement of his jet neck and cockpit between his legs is a little suggestive.

Hover Mode
As with the Deluxe version, Ultra Jetstorm can employ a hover mode. You're supposed to lower his cockpit and connect his legs over it, then flip up his shin guards to reveal thrusters. The thrusters themselves are quite big, and are coloured light blue that gradually fades to pink. Looks neat, but still bears only passing resemblance to the show version.

Suspsy Sez: Despite all his hype, Ultra Jetstorm has a number of flaws which prevent him from being a truly awesome toy: stumpy arms, a hollowed out body, tabs that keep popping out. That being said, he's still lots of fun, and heads and shoulders above similar-sized BM figures like Nightscream and Supreme Cheetor (which is not really a challenge). Ultimately, he is a must-have for any Vehicon fan. And at Botcon 2002, his mould will come roaring back as a reincarnation of G1 Cyclonus.


"Looky 'ere, Ma! I caught me a lightnin' bug!" -Jetstorm

DateJuly 8th 2002  
Score 9 stars (9 out of 10)  

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