Hasbro Transformers Age of Extinction Dinobot Slug Hasbro, 2014
Day #922: May 16, 2014
Dinobot Slug Not Slag, Because England
Transformers Age of Extinction Generations Deluxe Class
Item No.: Asst. A6508 No. A7813 Manufacturer:Hasbro Includes:2 long swords Action Feature:Transforms from Triceratops to robot Retail:$14.99 Availability: May 2014 Other: M4 Series #003
As a kid I had a robot triceratops named "Slag." For Transformers Animated I bought a similar triceratops named "Snarl," which was confusing, because that was the 1980s stegosaurus character. Dinobot Slug is the new name, seen in Age of Extinction and codified in the annals of IDW's Transformers comics including the recent Windblade series. So Slag is Slug, and Slug may as well be an all-new character - it has next to nothing to do with his 30-year-old ancestor, but it's pretty nifty all the same. As I've mentioned in other reviews, I am not someone who has collected (or watched) the movies so far - I don't rail against them, it's just not a segment I chased down. These guys were so weird that when I first laid eyes on Slug (and it was the Constructbots version) I said "Oh... I need to have one of those." Movies be damned, Hasbro could've made these some new weird Dead Universe Dinobot faction and I'd be all over it.
Packaged in dinosaur mode, the little guy reminds me a bit of Bio Zoids. These were made around 2005 and were more skeletal, less robotic, and much like Age of Extinction Dinobots to G1 Dinobots, look almost nothing like classic Zoids. Measuring about 7-inches long, the purple, red, and grey guy has soft light grey rubbery plastic so the parts won't snap off when you drop it on the floor. The head can pivot up and down a bit and features an opening jaw. Each leg can move a little bit, and the tail has spikes similar to a stegosaurus' tail. For some reason, there are 5mm holes in his sides so you can install the robot mode's swords and pretend it's an airplane or something. This creation is bizarre, even for the movie line - generally the movie has ultra-realistic alt modes and the Michael Bay signature style of robot, but the Dinobots feature his design team's fingerprints on both modes. Added bonus: nobody has to pay for licensing fees since the designs are wholly original. The dinosaur holds together relatively well, except the tail and part of the flap that covers his back seems to rest funny. There are also holes on the flip side of the flap that make it look like parts and pieces were removed during development.
Transformation is not too difficult - the front legs of the dinosaur hang off the robot as kibble, as does the dinosaur head. The tail also sort of floats off the back strangely, while the torso becomes arms and the legs unfold in a unique way to be the robot legs. I was particularly taken how the bony frill folds down in part for the robot mode for no good reason whatsoever - it doesn't look all that different, but it's fun to move the parts in place.
The purple 5-inch Dinobot is a fairly good robot. Keeping in with the "knight" motif, the head looks sort of like a medieval helmet and absolutely nothing like a Dinobot's head. It swivels easily, and looks pretty interesting if lacking in personality. With no mouth and no real face to speak of, it's just a purple bulb with a visor. Articulation is good, with stiff joints and a design that negates the ill effects of gravity on posing a figure with very large swords. You can get some decent poses out of this guy, but I haven't seen this much kibble hanging off of a toy in quite some time - if that bothers you, you won't like it. If it doesn't, well, it's certainly colorful and weird. It appeals to my weird toy collector side more than my Transformers fan side.
I'd go as far as to say that I don't like it as a Transformers item, but as its own thing it seems to work well. I don't believe I'd want to buy a new/larger/better version, but I still have an eye on the Constructbots edition. For the time being, I think this will be fine - I don't think I want to buy another Dinobot Slug until or unless we see some sort of IDW or G1 update in the future. I eagerly await Scorn, Slash, and to a lesser extent maybe Strafe. I'm not really feeling Strafe so far.
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