I'm not going to sugarcoat this - Bumblebee is the worst of these "Value Channel" 6-inch toys. The simplified 6-inch robot sold at Family Dollar for about $10, basically about the same size as Walgreens (and South America, and China) Cyber Battalion Bumblebee but with a fraction of the articulation for the price. It looks nice in the package, but the toy's limited articulation makes it an ideal choice for completists and people who can't find any other toys to buy.
Bumblebee has jointed shoulders and the same weird elbows as Optimus Prime, bending inward for no real obvious reason. They're not necessary for transformation, and they're functionally worthless. He has a sculpted Autobot symbol - a thing that's exceedingly rare these days - and a jointed neck on a body that's basically the new "evergreen" design. I kind of hate that this is the name fans are using, because all of us know Hasbro gets bored with any specific unified design every 12-18 months so it's just the current incarnation of the character. This is also the same basic design used for this year's upcoming Cyberverse Bumblebee line, albeit with some modifications. The 5mm fists are nice, but the legs are almost worthless except for the knees and they're only good for transformation.
The Bumblebee car is sturdy and may well be the simplest transformation I've ever seen on a toy of this size and price. The arms tuck in, the legs fold back, and you're pretty much done.
I like the size, and the metallic flake yellow is subtle and charming. There are a few black marks and blue headlights, with the bulk of the toy molded in black or yellow to keep costs down. The wheels roll, but not in a way that's impressive. It's a car. It's fine. You won't love it.
As I get older and review more and more toys, I look back at some things and just don't want it in the house. This figure will likely achieve that status soon because it's not fun and better versions of this character are coming. And already exist. Grimlock is pretty good, Optimus is adequate, and this is a toy that just isn't very good. Seeing how other toys have hip joints and Grimlock even has valid elbows, I can't help but wonder if the design was intentionally made a little softer given its target price points. It doesn't compete with similarly sized or priced toys, it's really only good for that lower-dollar venue. It is, mercifully, not junk - but it's by no means impressive and I hope kids get other, better toys as gifts.
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