While the term "Wreckers" is usually thrown around in the more hardcore (read: comics-reading) part of the fandom, some of their ranks draw from obscure characters who become famous toys. Take Whirl - he's had a toy in 2013 and another in 2014, with this weird little combiner being the harder one to track down. Based on a combiner mold for Vortex, this recolored chopper bot has a new head and a giant, spinning drill gun.
Like the other "limbs" in this series, Whirl can become an arm or a leg to make Ruination - a big Autobot warrior. Since the toys are mostly blue and orange, so is he - so it matches Whirl nicely. In robot mode he has the famous boxy, one-eyed head used by the original toy and pretty much any decent subsequent remake to hold his name. It doesn't really match the comic version we see now at all, but rather a hypothetical different Universe in the War for Cybertron and Fall of Cybertron games.
The robot mode is great - added deco makes the light blue pop nicely and the orange is bright and mostly evenly applied. Hands are the standard issue 5mm holes, and not the claws for which Whirl is generally famous. I'm OK with this because a) different continuity, and b) he can hold his gear. The detailing pops differently when a dark blue plastic is slathered in bright orange, mostly because the shadows and grooves don't get complete paint coverage and contrast much more nicely with the fully painted elements. With the lack of the clear light-up eye port on the head, the blue paint gives the face a much brighter disposition than many of his peers - you can actually see his "face." The character looks like an armored-up, alternate-deco version of the familiar character so I like it - but I'd be lying if I said I needed another take on this mold. In the USA alone were a brown version for Comic-Con and a Platinum set, a blue G2 edition, and a red retail version as Vortex. Whirl here is #4, and there was a metallic paint job of Vortex as #5 in Japan.
One of the more fascinating parts of this particular release - and his entire team - are exclusive, geared weapons. Whirl has a gun that spins when you push on the lever. It has 3 5mm pegs so it can stand freely, be mounted or held, or fall over. It also has a pair of 5mm holes so you can plug in his swords if you like. It's simple and fun, easy to use and distinctive. Classics-type toys rarely have fun, action-packed weapons so something like this is a real rarity. It's a shame that other than MechTech weapons and these we rarely see this kind of thing, but it's a fun treat when they happen. Treasure them.
Transforming this one is a snap - much like Vortex, Whirl quickly and easily balls up into a pretty swell Cybertronian air vehicle. Were these made as some sort of Vehicon drone, I'd be all over it - I'm sure this could have made a great (if off-model) Obsidian as well. Just fold the legs into the cockpit area, fold in the arms, and you're mostly done.
The chopper is great - spinning blade, and that's about it. The swords plug in to the vehicle, as does the unique-to-this-release spinning blaster weapon. The color scheme is largely similar, with lots of blue and orange to remind you of that one high school's awful colors. You know the one.
I have a lot of this mold, and given the fact that a new Bruticus mold exists, all of these guys are largely out of date. Except Whirl and the Wreckers - as unique characters with a unique feature, they haven't been replaced or updated, nor are they likely to be. Sure you can buy another Whirl, but it's not this one - it looks very different and is much larger. For that reason this figure is absolutely still worthwhile, especially if the price is right. It's no longer cheap, but how many other waves of multiple Wreckers have been released? Not many - so go get this one!
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