Finally a live action Transformers movie that doesn't have Bay at the helm,
and it's a prequel set in the 80s that soft-reboots some of Bumblebee's
timeline. With a fairly limited cast, most of them get toys in several
classes in the first few waves, but some "when we were still on Cybertron"
flashback sequences justify a lot of store exclusives and potential later
Toys with names in italics rated worse than "Mildly Recommended" while
those in boldface are "Strongly Recommended" or better.
With no real fanfare, this size class (which never had its second or third
series show up in my area) is back for the new movie. $3 price point, blind
- Wave 1: AKA Series 4 overall. Bumblebee (VW),
Dragonstorm (new mold), Dropkick (redeco of series 2 Cogman), Dropkick
Chopper Mode (redeco of series 1 Blackout), Grimlock (redeco from series 1),
Megatron (tank), Optimus Prime (redeco of series 1), Ratchet (redeco of
series 3), Scorn (not a redeco, but probably a leftover from the TLK waves),
Shatter (redeco of series 3 Barricade), Soundwave (blue redeco of series 1
Soundwave car), Dinobot Swoop (like Scorn, a new figure but probably a
leftover design, it's Strafe from AoE but in colors from his TLK redeco).
Scorn and Megatron are the best of the wave, IMO.
While still functionally the same Legion style as previous years, they've
rebranded it as Speed Series for this movie. All of them have sockets in the
back of vehicle mode for connecting the linewide "Igniters" gimmick. $5-7
- Wave 1: Two Bumblebees (VW and classic Camaro),
Barricade (sort of a Crown Victoria riff), Hot Rod (headswap retool of
Barricade), Optimus Prime (who may only appear in flashbacks and messages,
but by gum he's gonna be in the toyline).
- Wave 2: Hot Rod swapped out, "Cliffjumper" swapped in, otherwise the same
as wave 1. Cliffjumper is a straight redeco of Bumblebee, no mold changes at
all. Replace yellow plastic with red plastic, change the paint on the arms
from gunmetal to silver, and that's it. Even the packaging just uses a
recolored Bumblebee face rather than using the Cliffjumper seen in the
movie. It's really not Cliffjumper at all, more of a Cliffbee, Bumblejumper,
or Inferno Mode Bumblebee.
About the size of One-Step Changers, but with more emphasis on a vehicle mode
gimmick, but the same general level of robot mode articulation. They have
places to attach an Igniter in the gimmick-popped vehicle mode, but do not
come with Igniters. $10 price point.
- Wave 1: Bumblebee (Camaro, not reviewed), Megatron
(tank similar to RotF version), Dropkick (different Camaro), Hot Rod
(head-swap retool of Dropkick, not reviewed).
- Wave 2: Shatter (jet, but not the jet she was in the
movie), Optimus Prime (minor retool of the Power Plus version), Blitzwing
(redeco of the Megatron tank with new head). Just extended capsules of
Shatter and Blitzwing.
Power Series figures that come with Energon Igniters, which are push-button
friction motors. $15 price point.
- Wave 1: Bumblebee (VW), Bumblebee (Camaro, not
reviewed), Optimus Prime (Truck, not reviewed). The Camaro BB is slightly
remolded compared to the Power Series version.
- Wave 2: (Extended capsules) Soundwave (panel van with
speakers and airbrushed art), Ironhide (pickup truck). Soundwave was such a
great idea, too bad the execution was so badly botched.
The non-transforming and weirdly proportioned Titan Heroes designers get to
try their hand at transformations. Generally $15 price point.
- Greatest Hits Bumblebee: Bumblebee (Camaro) with sound gimmick, part of
the Target exclusive "Greatest Hits" line. $20, extra five bucks for the
sound chip, I guess. Status: Not gonna get this.
- Wave 1: Reships/redecos of TLK's Megatron, Bumblebee, and Optimus Prime,
plus new mold Shatter (jet).
- Shatter turns into something more like Armada Starscream, rather than the
Harrier she turns into in the movie (in fact, the colors of vehicle mode look
like the could pass for Armada Starscream). The robot is as hollow and
unarticulated as most Titan Changers, and transformation is very fiddly and
hard to manage despite its simplicity. The wings are peg-on accessories,
which is part of what makes things hard to manage in transformation. The
vehicle mode looks okay, other than the big obvious arms under the wings.
Not really worth its shelf price of $15.
Technically this is part of the Studio Series line, but I'll put the reviews
here to keep things together. $20 price point, no Igniter compatibility.
- Wave 3: Bumblebee (movie VW), Shadow Raider
- Wave 4: KSI Sentry (Stinger retool),
Dropkick (helicopter...it's a triple-changer in the movie, but the toys don't
try to get that fancy, it's either-or).
They're playing it safe here, other than multipacks, store exclusives, and a
few other oddballs, this is as big as it gets. A $20 price point that's a
little smaller and less complex than a typical Voyager, but with integrated
Energon Igniter gimmicks. This might also be the biggest toys that the
Igniters can reliably move. Packaged the same way as Cyberverse's Ultra
class...and sadly, about the same general quality level as Ultras.
- Wave 1: Bumblebee (VW), Bumblebee (Camaro, not
reviewed), Optimus Prime (Truck), Barricade (police car).
- Wave 2: Dropkick (helicopter), Blitzwing (jet).
Leaving this in case a Studio Series Voyager is released for the line.
Lumping together everything bigger than Voyager, since a lot of the larger
sets planned for this line are standalones or maybe have an assortment of
two. There does not seem to be anything planned for the Leader class as we
normally consider it, but Power Charge Bumblebee seems to fill that price
- Power Charge Bumblebee: Leader-sized, but more
like Deluxe complexity, it eschews the standard Igniters for a built-in
spinner (but NOT a flywheel) in the chest that triggers light and sound
gimmicks. $50 price point, no "series" listed on the package, so I guess
it's sui generis.
- Greatest Hits Cassette Pack: Target exclusive.
One-step changer Bumblebee from AoE, plus three datapad minion redecos:
Frenzy (blue Rumble redeco), Buzzsaw (black and gold Combiner Wars Buzzsaw
redeco), Howlback (blue Ravage redeco). $30, so basically you get the crappy
Bumblebee for free with the three datacons.
- Greatest Hits Soundwave with Doombox: Retool of
Titans Return Soundwave with new stickers and some other deco tweaks.
There's much speculation about what this was originally intended for, since a
Leader class retool (even as limited as this is) seems a bit much for a store
exclusive...why not just the new paint and stickers?
- Studio Series Multipacks: A retooled or new mold Camaro Bumblebee with
add-on panels to customize his look in a garage set, a "now and then" two
pack with VW and modern Camaro Bumblebees. The now-and-then set gives new
numbers to the figures, but it's basically just the Studio Series VW packaged
with the Last Knight Deluxe, maybe some tiny paint tweaks.
- MPM-7 Masterpiece Bumblebee: I got it for $50 and
still feel very ripped off. Fiddly crap that wouldn't fully
transform is not my idea of a fun toy.