Air Attack Optimus Primal - RiD - Figure

A curse on Supreme Cheetor. Bad enough that he was a sub-par toy, but his poor sales nearly quashed any chances of Air Attack Optimus Primal being released. Fortunately, the runaway success of Robots In Disguise, along with fan demand, convinced Hasbro that it would be safe to ship the toy as a Toys R Us exclusive.

Robot Mode: Yowza. At 31 cm(12") tall and 22 cm(8.6") wide at the shoulders, very few TFs come bigger than Air Attack Optimus Primal, or Suprimal as fans call him. He's mostly metallic gray-brown with translucent forearms, gold shoulder pads, beige for his upper torso and shin guards, a brilliant gold chest plate, flesh tone fingers, and various red, blue, gold, and flesh tone highlights. The sculpting on this toy is nothing short of excellent. From his shaggy gorilla fur to the white markings on his forearms, from the creases on his fingernails to the translucent blue "flames" on his back, and from his patterned chest plate with a Maximal symbol etched into it to his dead-on accurate head, this is truly the most impressive-looking Optimus Primal toy ever, quite unmistakable as the character from the Beast Machines TV series. His face is moulded in an open mouth expression, as though he were talking or roaring or singing. (Hey, he did sing once in Beast Wars)

Despite having a huge upper body and relatively small feet, Suprimal stands tall and firm. He has all the standard BW/BM joints: ratchet-jointed shoulders, elbows, hips, and knees, head, wrists, waist, and ankles. His left elbow has swivel and ratchet joints, but the right elbow only has a ratchet joint, probably due to its power punching action. And what's really neat is that, aside from his thumbs, each of Suprimal's fingers has two joints! He can pompously wag his index finger. He can give the "devil's horns" while grinding to some heavy metal. And yes, he can flip people the bird. Why not take Suprimal with you to work sometime and show your co-workers exactly what you think of them? The only annoying thing is that due to the positioning of his thumbs, Suprimal can't make a proper closed fist.

Now for his gimmicks. Pushing on his chest plate activates a red light in its centre and a high-pitched jet engine sound, followed by a weird thrumming that lasts for about 15 seconds. During this time, you can do one of several things:

* Push down on Suprimal's head to see it light up green and to hear three lines from voice actor and all-around cool guy Garry Chalk: a battle cry, "Maximized!" and "The seeds of the future lie buried in the past." This last line is delivered in a somewhat exasperated tone, as though Garry was trying to explain Primal's philosophy to someone who just wasn't getting it.

* Pulling back the spring-loaded right arm and releasing it causes Suprimal to grunt as he knocks your block off.

* Pushing in the white tab in the middle of Suprimal's back launches a translucent blue disc from his chest accompanied by a firing sound. The disc travels about a metre or so. Once it's launched, you can still make firing sounds by pushing the tab repeatedly.

* Pressing a small gray button on his back deploys his jet pack, complete with engine sounds, light-up red thrusters, and translucent blue exhaust flames. In addition, the pitch of the engine sound changes depending on how you're holding Suprimal. Holding him vertical gives off the highest pitch, horizontal is medium, and upside down gives off the lowest.

All in all, this is one totally awesome robot mode. Although, he does look weird with a set of gorilla buttocks behind his head.

Transformation: Fairly easy to figure out. The shoulder pads rotate and fold down, the waist and legs rotate around, the legs fold up, robot feet fold in and gorilla feet fold out, the upper body section swings down 180 degrees, and the chest plates slides out and flips over. (The left arm fell off while I was transforming him back to robot mode, but it snaps right back into place, thankfully)

Gorilla Mode: Move over, Donkey Kong. In this mode, Suprimal stands 23 cm(9") tall when fully upright. He retains the same colour scheme of his robot mode, along with a white mane, metallic beige face and teeth, translucent blue eyes, and a mysterious translucent blue sphere inside his mouth. The gorilla face is moulded into a threatening snarl, and while it looks good, it doesn't really resemble the one on the show. The robot mode shoulder pads have become arm guards, and are jointed to move with the form of the arms. The translucent chest plate features a half sphere with a Maximal symbol carved into it. Visible beneath the chest plate is a translucent blue orb, which could be conceived as a Spark crystal.

Pushing on the chest plate in this mode again activates the thrumming sound and causes the entire Spark to light up red. The gorilla head also lights up red when pushed and utters new two phrases: "Optimus, Maximize!" and "ARRRGH!!" The launcher with firing sound still works in the mode, although it's a bit unnerving to see the disc shooting out of Suprimal's neck. The power punch also still works, but the accompanying grunt sound does not, at least not on mine.

Also, Suprimal's got something for you to kiss: a big pink naked posterior. Pucker up, buttercup.

Overall, Susp Sez: Well, it took more than a year for this toy to be released, but I'd say it was well worth the wait. Between his impressive size, superb detail, landmark gimmicks (he's the first TF to have sounds taken directly from the show), and articulated fingers, I can objectively say that Supreme Air Attack Optimus Primal is one of the best and most fun TF toys EVER. It'll be hard for Hasbro to top this chimp. 10/10

Thanks go out to Superspy for sending me this toy.


"We win if we believe in ourselves and our unity!" -Optimus Primal

DateAugust 13th 2002  
Score 10 stars (10 out of 10)  

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