Monday, December 7, 2009

Transformers Henkei! / Gentei!: Ghost Starscream

Name: Ghost Starscream
Line: Transformers Henkei! (Japan)
Company: Takara Tomy
Year: November 2009

Price: $79.00 USD & up
Info: Transformers Generations 2009, Vol. 2 mail-away exclusive

Today we have the latest mail-away exclusive from the 2nd volume of the Transformers Generations book. In order to obtain this toy in Japan you had to buy the book and fill out an included order form to send away. If you didn't live in Japan you had to go through a 2nd party re-seller and it wasn't cheap as I've seen it being offer for as much as $120.00 USD! Is it worth your hard earned money? Hard for me to say, but let's take a look at one of the most iconic Generation One characters, Starscream.

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Starscream comes packaged in the standard Henkei! style blister card, however as you can see the package is done in blue monochrome. I was a little surprised to see that the image used of Starscream is actually the translucent version and not simply a monochromed shot of the regular toy. The included tech spec trading card features the same product shot as the front packaging, only a full body shot with the power ratings on the reverse side.

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I normally don't care for translucent toys, Transformers or not. The use of the translucent plastic this time around makes sense though and it works really, really well. Ever since Megatron returned as Galvatron and obliterated Starscream in the classic cartoon fans have wanted a ghost version of Starscream in toy form. Granted this is not the first version of Starscream in his ghost form (e-Hobby did a translucent version of the original G1 toy a few years back), this is argubaly the best version to date. I don't have many complaints about the toy in jet mode. I was a little disappointed that the Decepticon emblem is not tampographed on the underside of the wings. Small gripe granted, but it doesn't really take anything away from the rest of the toy.

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The toy looks great under regular lighting, but it really shines (no pun intended) when exposed to natural light. I used a little sunlight in these pictures to show just how ghostly the figure can look. The only solid plastic used are the thighs and the silver chrome around the tips of his missile launchers. The rest of the body is fully translucent, even his head!

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Here is good comparison shot of the toy in natural light (sunlight) and regular lighting (florescent).


This toy is wonderfully done and would make a great addition to any Transformers Henkei! or Classics collection. Because of it's exclusive nature and price it isn't for everybody. If the price tag scares you away then I highly recommend you track down the regular Henkei! version of Starscream as you see in this last comparison picture. It is much more G1 accurate than Hasbro versions. A fellow collector friend of mine brought to my attention that this mold surprisingly doesn't appear to be suffering any mold degradation. Seeing how Takara Tomy has used this mold approx. 11 times (Classics, Henkei!, Botcon uses) prior to this release one would think the mold would start to show some signs of where. All the joints are very tight which is really nice since there are a lot of points of articulation in the figure. Of the 4 Gentei! figures released thus far (the other 3 being Mirage, Wildrider, Strafe) I have to say Starscream is tied for being my favorite. Takara Tomy hit a home run with this release and I can see it being very popular with the fandom for years to come.

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