Thursday, August 14, 2014

Transformers Age of Extinction: Bumblebee & Dinobot Strafe (Walmart Exclusive)

This is the ONLY time you'll see an Age of Extinction toy on this blog.  I hated the movie with a passion.  There was very little in the movie that I found I was OK with.  Needless to say the only movie toys I've bought up until now have been 3 of the deluxe Dinobots, and I only bought those to have something new to open and fiddle around with.

When the first images surfaced online of the 3 new Walmart exclusive two packs featuring a hodgepodge of molds I'm sure I wasn't the only one that was sitting there scratching my head.  Hasbro broke out the Beast Wars basic mold used for Terrorsaur (and other repaints) as Strafe?  Energon's Cruellock was being used as Grimlock?  Beast Wars Guiledart as Slug?  This seemed to come completely from left field.

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While I really wasn't looking for these per se, I did see on Facebook a sighting had been made somewhere in the country as a Walmart was doing a reset, I presume their fall reset.  Conveniently enough I found myself at Walmart late last night picking up some things for my wife.  One of the advantages of shopping your local Walmart late at night is the crowds are non-existent!  This is also when the pallets are dropped all across the store for the workers to re-stock the shelves.

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Just outside the toy department I found 3 pallets stacked full of new toys.  I walked around all 3 and was just about the leave when one box on the bottom of the stack caught me eye.  It read 'TRAS4 LEGION ASST'.  I carefully slid the box out from underneath the stack so I could take a peek inside.  Bam!  The new Walmart exclusive 2 packs were found.  By the way, I'm in the upstate of South Carolina, just south of Charlotte, NC.  The case assortment if anyone cares is as follows:

- Stinger & Slug x2
- Optimus Prime & Grimlock x3
- Bumblebee & Strafe x3

While technically G2 drew me back into collecting Transformers again in the 90's, Beast Wars really brought me back into the fold.  I decided to grab the pack w/ Terrorsaur I mean Strafe just for kicks.  If you're still reading along here with go w/ the pictures of the actual toys!

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As you can see here we have a slightly repainted Dark of the Moon Legion class Bumblebee and a repainted Beast Wars basic Terrorsaur.  As I already mentioned, the latter is my reason for purchase.

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I always was a fan of the flipformers from a few years back.  Nothing has changed here.  If you are familiar with any iteration of this mold, then you know what you are getting here.

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Strafe here does keep some of this movie markings from his deluxe toy.  Overall I have to say that it looks pretty nice.

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What caught me by surprise was the stamp underneath one of the wings.  You can see the original 1995 Hasbro/Takara markings, but above it now has a 2013 Hasbro Tomy stamp.  Hmm.

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To transform Strafe from dino to robot you simply pull up on his head and he basically unfolds into a robot.  Again, nothing has really changed here from the previous releases.  Overall it appears that the mold isn't showing any signs of degradation, but the ankle joints are loose.  If memory serves me correctly, ever other version of this toy that I've owned also had loose ankle joints.

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Articulation is pretty good for a mid 90's Transformer.  Ball joints are present in the shoulders, elbows, hips and needs.  Pivot joints are used for the feet/ankles.  I'm not the most creative when it comes to posing my toys, but here you go.  I will point out that some assistance may be needed when posing and standing the figure.  The dino kibble makes him back heavy and with the weaker ankle joints he does tend to want to fall over.  I'm sure this could be remedied rather easy with some clear nail polish.

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Strafe's packed in partner is Bumblebee.  Like there aren't enough versions of this toy, let alone the character already.  This is the Legion class toy first used in the Dark of the Moon movie line of Transformers.  At first I thought it was the same as before, only with some white paint being slopped on the face.  Then I transformed him...

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I don't recall the windows being painted like this.  Bumblebee now almost seems to have "cartoon" colored windows.  Whatever, I'm giving this toy to the little boy my wife has watched for the last 2 years.  My wife is starting a new job so after this week we won't have him or his sister at our house.  I'm sure he'll be thrilled to have this toy...and no I wasn't being sarcastic.

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Size comparison.  I really wish Hasbro would bring back the basic class of toys.

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These Walmart two packs retail for $15 each.  While I feel that price is a little high for this set (as opposed to Stinger & Slug which seems to be a better value), this set still has a lot to offer.  I know this isn't Terrorsaur, but I still dig this mold and the blue and black look terrific.  3 out of 5 Duocon thumbs up.

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