Transformers Universe Legends Figures
Item No.: Asst. 83791 No. 83917 Manufacturer:Hasbro Includes:n/a Action Feature:Transforms from car to robot Retail:$4.99 Availability: Spring 2009 Other: Repainted as Shadow Striker in early 2010
Largely known as a hated entity in the fandom, Wheelie got a surprise update in 2009 as one of many top-notch new "minibots" in Hasbro's Legends line. Almost as surprising as his appearance and overall quality is the fact that it shot up in value quickly, as the Legends line has had spotty distribution over the years. As such, this little guy could cost you $20 or more... or you could just get the Japanese version in a different color for a more sensible price.
Like many modern "classic" figures, Hasbro set out to make a robot mode that's slightly closer to his cartoon appearance while changing up the vehicle mode a fair amount. His face is now grey (rather than orange like the original toy), plus he has the "hat" familiar to viewers of the final episodes of the original cartoon. A nifty faux-accessory is a sculpted slingshot on his arm, which Hasbro took the initiative to paint blue-- so there's no missing it. The 3-inch tall robot is articulated at the shoulders and hips, plus he has knees that go backward for transformation-- so they aren't too useful. The bright orange coloring really pops and this figure looks fantastic hanging out with the 2010 Generations Blurr toy.
The 3-inch tall robot quickly converts to a car, complete with a red Autobot logo on the hood. It rolls well and, on the whole, looks like a vehicle you could see driving around on the streets, which is very much unlike the original toy from the 1980s. Since it's a simple, small car there re no action features to speak of and no accessories to lose-- unless you pop off an arm.
The little guy has blue eyes and what seems to be a slightly open mouth, but there's nothing in his pose or his expression that really gives him a lot of personality-- your love of this toy will largely come from your feelings toward the character. If the little rhyming guy reminds you of a pre-Jar Jar Binks, well, you can go ahead and not get this one-- but the plastic feels durable, more so than other toys of this scale, and passing on it means you're missing out on a well-constructed (if rare) little toy.
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