With a lot collecting, you can usually save money or you can save time, it is a very rare occurrence when it’s possible to do both. What I mean is usually you can pay more to get a figure early, or you can save money by getting it later.
This week saw the advent of “Cybertron Monday”. As a “Global Online Sales Event” the name is a play on the annual “Cyber Monday” post-Thanksgiving sales event. There were a number of aspects to it: a dedicated website accessible from ‘www.CybertronMonday.com'; texting “TRANSFORMERS” to 38470 allowed the sender to receive a voice message from Optimus Prime to remind them of the “special day”; certain retailer websites showed an exclusive trailer; and — most importantly — a number of those retailer websites had the Transformers: Age of Extinction toys for sale a week earlier than their official retail date of May 17th. Hasbrotoyshop.com offered free shipping, ToysRUs.com has $10 off $50, $15 off $75, and $20 off $100 for “selected Transformers”, and Kmart.com has some pieces discounted as well. I went the Amazon route for a couple reasons. First they had Buy One Get One 50% off and with Amazon Prime, I could get the discount — which equaled out to everything I purchased being far less than retail price — as well as free 2 day shipping.
A great discount AND super-fast shipping? Boo-yah.
I hate spoilers, which is why I never watch trailers, don’t read articles, and I usually tend to buy the movie toys and pack them away in a closet until I get to see the movie itself.
In this case I was determined to open at least two of them immediately: the Voyager class “Evasion Mode” Optimus Prime and Leader Class Optimus Prime.
First up: “Evasion Mode” Optimus.
Holy Primus. This toy is magnificient.
There’s a lot of whining that comes from the supposed “fandom” about how Hasbro does nothing but horrible things and 3rd party is the answer to all our prayers that, frankly, those of us who actually like Transformers get quite tired of hearing. I have now decided that this toy is the perfect litmus test for gauging whether a person is worth talking to about Transfomers toys.
If you don’t like this toy, I have news for you: you don’t actually like Transformers.
Transforming into… well, there’s no if, ands, or buts about it; he transforms into G1 Optimus Prime’s alt mode.
With the loss of the long nose styling, he is missing a sizeable bit of the bulk of all his previous versions. Thanks to those previously mentioned anti-spoiler rules, I don’t know if this smaller size has already been addressed. I can only venture a guess that it has something to do with the fact that the last time we saw him, at the end of Dark of the Moon, he was missing an entire arm along with a good chunk of his anatomy.
For whatever reason, this “Evasion Mode” is obviously meant as an actual disguise… wait, Robots in Disguise? Now where have I heard that before? Of course, I’m sure all these questions will be answered in roughly a month and a half when the movie hits theaters.
Meanwhile, back with this spectacular toy. Though it is his first time as a flat-nosed or “cab over” truck, this isn’t the first time Movie Optimus has been released with G1 Optimus Prime’s alt mode colour scheme. That honor goes to the 2008 Allspark Power line’s “First Strike” Optimus Prime.
As for “Evasion Mode” Optimus, from the way the entire cab unfolds and then folds back in on itself to form his torso to the way his arms wrap around on the inside with forearms folding flat on the top forming a portion of the roof of his cab, his transformation is truly inspired. It was a challenge at first that almost made me have to look at the instruction manual. Almost.
I particularly like the facemask-less headsculpt.
His transformation leaves him with almost Revoltech levels of articulation and detailing in robot mode.
A rather surprising accessory, he comes with the weapon we see him using at the very end of Dark of the Moon, Megatron’s Fusion Shotgun.
The gun is even molded to be backwards compatible with Dark of the Moon Voyager class Megatron.
Given that he apparently starts the fourth movie in cognito, who knows if the shotgun is all he’s picked up from Megatron?
I was already stupid levels of excited to see this movie, and this toy has only served to further heighten that expectation. It’s going to be a loooooong month and a half.