Those were Animated Optimus Prime’s words just shortly after a test flight wearing a new jetpack; (that looks a whole heck of a lot like G1 Jetfire’s toy’s jetpack piece).
This inaugural flight sent Optimus careening into some walls, through a couple close encounters with Detroit’s skyline, and finally crashing into the ground. After some modifications, including the addition of stabilizers — the “wings” in “Wingblade” — Wingblade Optimus Prime is born.
“Hey, what could possibly go wrong, I mean, besides all the painful crashing and burning stuff?”
Sari is not known for her ability to put people at ease. The Wingblade isn’t Optimus’ only change in appearance over the course of the series. First, he appeared in “Cybertron Mode”.
That is to say, only slightly less of an earth truck than his “Earth Mode”. Even with how very little “Cybertron” there is to this Cybertron mode, it does give him a somewhat younger looking robot mode. He is, of course, carrying his trademark Animated weapon, the axe.
Once coming to earth, he adopts an Earth mode. Being set in Detroit in the future, this was still a futuristic truck, albeit nominally a futuristic firetruck.
Now his robot mode has a little more heft to it.
You might have noticed the scarring on Optimus. When I first heard this toy announced — a two-pack with Megatron and a DVD included — I was bound and determined not to buy it. I hate battle-damage. A lot. However, I actually came across him on the road trip on my way to Botcon 2008 in Cincinnati. Animated toys had only been released in a test market, so it was pretty much the only toy I was able to find (I would later find one of the very few Voyager Bulkheads at retail when we got to Cincinnati). 2008 was the year that Botcon had Animated voice actors David Kaye, Bumper Robinson, and Tara Strong and Animated story editor Marty Isenberg, artist Derrick J. Wyatt, and director Matt Youngberg. I actually bought the 2-pack for the DVD of the first episode that was included. I then went through the Botcon autograph lines for the first time, getting each of them to sign my DVD. Incidentally, I never even thought of where they should sign, but when I handed David Kaye the DVD, he just opened it, pulled out the cover, and signed directly on it. Very smart. David Kaye is obviously a pro at this.
Where was I? Oh yeah! So, the Optimus I really wanted was the Voyager class that came out later that year. Though he comes with his own axe (that you will see an example of later in this very post), I always give him the axe from his Deluxe class release, ’cause it’s just too awesome.
Whereas his Cybertron mode Deluxe has his mouthplate permanently down and his Earth mode Deluxe has his mouthplate permanently up; his Voyager class toy has the ability to raise and lower his mouthplate.
Then, the announcement came out: Supreme class Optimus Prime. I thought, “Alrighty, Hasbro, you have lost your fool mind if you think I would buy that.” I stuck to my word… for about a year, until he showed up at my local Toys R Us for $20.
Even at that drastic discount, I’m still not sure why I bought him. Despite being absolutely huge, he has horrible articulation thanks to his auto-transforming gimmick. He is just a huge brick-like version of his Voyager self, with lights and sounds. Extremely annoying, easily triggered sounds.
The one amusing thing about him is that his mouthplate moves when he talks.
And that would be just about where this post ends. Sure, a Voyager release of Optimus with his spiffy, previously mentioned Wingblade upgrade was announced, but for Japan only. So, I thought, “Ok, there’s no way I am spending that much to buy the same Voyager toy just to get a jetpack, gauntlets, and smaller version of the Magnus hammer.”
Then I learned, yes this would be a release of the same Voyager toy with the same axe and gun that transforms him into a “firetruck”, however…
Ok, I have a point at which all rational thought stops. I don’t pretend to understand it, but I go weak in the brain over translucent plastics.
Sorry, I was just staring at that beautiful, beautiful toy.
Yes, I caved and bought the Wingblade set, and I am so glad I did. I immediately took it off that wonderfully see-through toy and dressed up my regular Voyager Optimus.
It is amazing and really a shame that this doesn’t appear to be getting a release in the U.S.
Hasbro had announced that it was going to release an un-scarred version of the Deluxe toy with the Wingblade over here — surprisingly the Wingblade add-ons work on both toy sizes, though not very well on the Deluxe.
Whatever original plans Hasbro had for releasing this have apparently been scuttled, as we have heard nothing since the original announcement.
The Wingblade armor can replace the Voyager toy’s transformed axe/trailer as a winged battle trailer; doing nothing to further the concept of Optimus as a firetruck.
And now I leave you with one more shot of this gloriously diaphanous Animated Optimus Prime toy.