When the first live action Transformers movie was released a decade ago, I went a bit nuts when the toys were first released. The first day I saw them I horrified my girlfriend by coming home with two full garbage bags of action figures and a $700 dent in my bank account.
Now here we are at movie five and restraint is much easier. For the first time I am not buying a toy of every character that was in the movie. Who needs yet another Bbee camero? So I’m buying toys only of new characters that showed up in the flick, saving me both cash and shelf space.
Thankfully I was able to put restraint on hold the other day when I finally came across some of these new characters in toy form. So lets take a look at three new Autobots to grace the silver screen and subsequently get turned into toy-candy – Steelbane, Cogman and Sqweeks.
Steelbane was one of those generic Knights of Cybertron to show up in the flick, and you would be hard pressed to single him out when watching the movie. I will say I am quite impressed with the look of Steelbane in robot mode – perhaps the most knight-esque Transformer I’ve ever seen! Really looks like he should be guarding a tomb for centuries and then coming to life to scare the shit out of Lara Croft. However the look of this toy is the best thing about him. The shoulder and leg balljoints are very loose, making him very hard to pose. This is made up for somewhat by the fact he has tight neck and elbow joints so you can at least give him the odd cool pose. Comes with a sword with lots of little detail on it and the wings folded behind serve to give him a look as though he is wearing a chainmail cape. So visually he looks great, playwise he is a bit of a letdown.
Frankly pretty crap. The loose balljoints make him even harder to pose in beast mode than robot mode. The chest does not sit flush with the main body and while I appreciate the little detail of the red tongue, it actually detracts from the dragons head when you open the mouth wider. I found the transformation to beast mode quite fiddly as well; his secondary mode is so ill defined and the instructions were not particularly useful. I ended up just looking at the back of the box and fiddling with the figure until he represented that pic.
Typical – we finally get a Transformer in one of the movies who gets a lot of lines and screen time and he never even transforms! Well thankfully they released some toys of him that do. There is a fantastic looking one with a headmaster gimmick, however since he never did it in the film I went the cheaper 1-step option. I don’t usually like 1-step changers, I find them very overpriced for the simplistic figure you get. However since I don’t want to spend a fortune importing a transforming Cogman I was happy enough to get this representation of him. They did the colour scheme and in particular the head quite well and he doesn’t look too bad at all. Just a shame that he has no knees and his legs are so chunky.
Cogman transforms into an Aston Martin DB11, which he did get behind the wheel of in the movie if memory serves. He achieves this in toy mode by a simple twist of the legs. A nice little car, though a better paintjob wouldn’t have hurt.
This little guy was supposed to be the ultra-cute new bot of Transformers 5. But R2-D2 he aint and he never really captured our hearts. However if there is to be a movie toy that will garner your affection – it’ll be this little guy! While his robot mode initially looks as lackluster as the character did onscreen (though I do did all the rust in his paintjob) , it’s all his little mods that make the toy.
He has several options, he can use his little cargo trailer from his alt-mode (which we will come to momentarily) to have a sort of rocket backpack, or you can remove his little handlebar hands to affix a big arm and the huge cannon he wielded in one of the final movie fight scenes.
Not a bad looking scooter. Well, it is a bad looking scooter I guess but it’s supposed to be so on that level it really works. The transformation to scooter is fairly straight forward but I find it helps to cheat a little and remove his handlebar hands and his head. This detracts nothing from his alt-mode and saves potential scratches to your toy by jamming everything in.
His cargo-trailer really makes the toy! It can be attached to the back which adds a lot of bulk to the toy, and then altered into a battle mode replete with cannons and guns enough to freak out the strongest Con. It also transforms into one of the coolest little maintenance bays I’ve seen this side of G1 Optims, with a toolbox to store spare parts and a very maneuverable robotic arm. Very cool indeed!
They never really seem to hit their stride with the movie toys do they? Many of the ROTF figures were fantastic but since then we’ve had DOTM which had toys too complicated and AoE whose toys were too simple. So far none of the TLK figures are massively impressive. So unless you really want representations of the new movieverse characters both Steelbane and Cogman are both easy passes. However do yourself a favour and go pick up a Sqweeks. It’s a really cool toy with lots of play value and by far one of the most enjoyable movie figures I have played with. Small on screen but big on fun!
Got something to add to the review above? Would love to read it in the comments section below!