I like this line because it really does a great job mixing generations. Bot ShotsJetfire recycles Starscream's basic chassis, but adds engines and a new head and, of course, new paint. This time around the figure borrows heavily from the original cartoon as well as the Classics toy, which moves it away from the original 1980s toy's origins in Macross/Robotech. At this point, it basically just looks like a supercharged fighter jet rather than an intergalactic anime battle ship of some sort.
The robot mode looks pretty great, with big blue eyes, a nice crooked smile, and some of the same design elements as the various models of Jetfire over the years. The blue crest on the helmet is squarely from the cartoon, while the giant red engines come from the 2006 version of the toy. His helmet, on the sides at least, seems largely inspired by the 2006 Classics toy as well, while the chest is really nothing special. The arms and feet are nothing new.
Transforming it is a little touchy, some of these guys are a little tougher to get to jump into robot mode just right as the series goes on. Wave 3 was particularly wonky, but they still all transform by hand and look fantastic. I love the look and feel of these guys, but I'm really curious to see how they'll hold up as toys. Will today's toddler want them in 20 years? Will they break before then due to the spring-loaded mechanisms? I guess we won't know for sure for quite some time, but for the time being I won't be skipping any of these.
Troubleshooting Note: As always, there are two screws on each figure's chest. If you tighten these, the trigger is a little jumpier. If you loosen it, it weakens it a bit. Depending on how well the figures do (or don't) spring up, you may want to keep a screwdriver around to adjust them to your liking.
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