Transformers Timelines - Dion & Cop-Tur Club Membership Free Figure Introduction: Dion is a character with great distinction and honor... in that he's attracted slightly more baseless speculation and fanon than a doppelganger of Cyclonus that appeared for several seconds and then disappeared into the ether. Yes, Dion was Orion Pax's friend in the Generation One episode "War Dawn", who was tragically gunned down by the Decepticons in a prelude to the saga in the cartoon. While his friends Orion and Ariel were seen being rebuilt into Optimus Prime and Elita-1, Dion was never seen again... and rather than assuming he died, fans obsessively clung to the notion that he too must have been rebuilt into someone important. Perhaps Ultra Magnus, or Ironhide. Well, nope! Dion's back, and he's... Dion! Serving as this year's free membership figure for the Transformers Collectors Club, Dion's back in action as a member of the G1 Elite Guard, a concept that was introduced in 2009's BotCon exclusive set, "Wings of Honor." Dion appears in the latest club magazine stories, serving as a member of the Guard and fighting alongside his comrades, Metalhawk, Ironfist, and Over-Run. His new toy is a recolor of the Transformers Universe Hot Shot mold... or rather, the Henkei! Henkei! version of the toy, with the included missile launchers and peg holes. In a way, Dion is a refreshing concept, in that he's a blank slate full of potential, whereas Ironhide and Ultra Magnus are both well worn and well established parts of the mythos. And what's more, he and the Wings of Honor concept manage to induct a new, interesting concept into the usually flat and overdone world of the Generation 1 cartoon. Dion is included with his Micromaster partner Cop-Tur, a redeco of Hot Shot's sidekick Jolt and a homage to the Challenge of the Go-Bots character of the same name. Vehicle Mode: In the cartoon, Dion was some kind of Cybertronian hauler. As he's a recolor of Hot Shot, this toy is... a sport's car. A bit of a lateral change, but then, something flashier and with a bit more punch fits his role as a member of the Elite Guard. Pay no attention to the fact that a clearly earth-styled car is active on Cybertron, your head will hurt less that way. Hot Shot was mostly yellow, with a bit of black/dark gray. Dion is FAR more elaborately painted in this mode. His main color is orange, but the second most prominent paint application is the blue marking his chassis, looking like some kind of Fast and the Furious-style tricked out custom paint job. In addition to the blue on his hood, he's got it over his hubcaps and on his spoiler, along with a half painted Autobot symbol combined with some trailing back "speed lines" on his sides. The effect looks fabulous, even with part of the symbol being cut off do to his transformation hinges. It makes him fit in well with Generation 1-style Classics characters, and adds a bit of character to boot. This is the kind of car you'd see in some kind of street race, and shows Dion has a bit of a wild side to him. Aside from this, Dion's rims are white, and his engine block is back. He has painted hubcaps and red headlights, along with clear windows... aside from the portion of Hot Shot's mold that doesn't allow for it. Silver paint is used here, and does not look too intrusive. In terms of play value, there's a rear mounted Powerlinx port that you can attach Cop-Tur, or any Mini-Con mold to. His two blasters peg in under the back of his vehicle mode, and you can insert his "flame" missiles to emulate the concept of burning exhaust. All in all, a very solid vehicle mode with a slick paint job. Fun Publications really went all out here, and the result is great-looking. Transformation: I don't have as big a problem with the Hot Shot mold's transformation as others do, but I can't rightly say it's among Hasbro and Takara-Tomy's best designed or fun engineering feats. It's mostly a bunch of parts crashing into one another until you can get them into their appropriate place in robot mode. But then, once you figure it out, I don't find it that frustrating, and at the very least, I'm not obsessively getting a bunch of panels in line with one another. So it's a passable, but flawed, feature of the toy. One note, though... like with I did with Henkei! Hot Rod before him, I have problems with one of Dion's lower legs popping off in transformation. It's not too bad - you can pop it right back on. However, it does become annoying very quickly. Robot Mode: Some people say that the Hot Shot mold is a bad fit for Dion; I disagree. Hot Shot's head sculpt is a decent match for the character, as I think it hits the same general details as his show model's, sans the mohawk. Furthermore, this is Dion upgraded; he's not just the dock worker who got shot, he's ready to fight. And as a toy concept, that is a fair bit more exciting and justifies the use of this mold. Anyway... wow. Fun Publications sure as hell has come a long way since their first free figure, Skyfall. Dion is elaborately and intricately painted. His main colors in this mode are orange, blue, and white, with blue being the main color of his torso. But there's a lot of finely painted details on his chest and waist, in the form of white and yellow applications. This ties back to his cartoon incarnation, and adapts it to the molded details of the Hot Shot toy. It draws away from the layout used for Hot Shot, and helps to make Dion distinct from his parent mold. His legs and lower arms are mostly white plastic, save for the parts that serve as part of his vehicle mode shell. The side panels, or doors of his vehicle mode, are also orange, with a metallic blue distinct from the other shades used on him. And ah, a note about Dion's blue... both this blue and the blue of his torso are a darker color than the more cyan-looking color of the stock photo shown above. Blue is one of my favorites, and these shades look excellent, so good job, Fun Publications. Aside from all of that, there's a small amount of black. It contrasts, but doesn't do so very negatively. And finally, there's the Elite Guard badge on his left shoulder, which ties the whole package together and looks great. Dion has all the functionality of Hot Shot, including the Henkei! version's oft-mentioned missile launchers. They can peg into his hands and be wielded like guns, or pegged into his hands. This sits better on Dion, as they aren't as glaring a downgrade as they are for Hot Shot, who lost his back-mounted BFG. But seriously though, they look great on either version of this mold. Unfortunately, like Hot Shot, the peg holes in his hands are too small to wield standard-sized 5mm peg weapons or weapon mold Mini-cons. In terms of articulation, Dion is pretty good. His legs have the full range of motion, though you may be frustrated if yours decides to have the lower leg pop off too. But then, again, it's easily stuck back on. As for his arms, they are somewhat encumbered by the car mode shells sitting on his shoulders, but I personally haven't had as much of a problem with them as others. They definitely knock into one another, but I think you can still get some nice poses and a decent range of motion from them. If they bother you, however, you can easily arrange the shell panels so that one overlaps the other, and that they're fully out of the way. Once again, you can peg in Cop-Tur (or any other Mini-con) on the car shell's powerlinx port. Its functional, but due to where it ends up, it looks kinda doofy. Cop-Tur: Can't forget Dion's Mini-Co- err, Micromaster buddy. Cop-Tur transforms into a fictional "rocket rotored" helicopter of similar design to Transformers Armada's original Jolt toy. He's the same blue color used for Dion's torso in robot mode, with silver windows, back engines and rotors, and red paint applications behind the rotor. Once you transform him into robot mode, you get the same colors, with silver used for his face. As with Universe Jolt, he... is extremely difficult to stand in this mode. Nevertheless, he looks decent enough, and is just the right size to go with your E-Hobby Go-Bots toys. Personally, I like to keep him with Dion as his wisecracking sarcastic sidekick. His voice actor? John DiMaggio. Conclusion: I'm going to have to finish this up a bit differently than normal. I'm not going to say whether or not I recommend Dion, as, well, you either had to have signed up for the club or bought him by some other means, and that's not really a field I can get into. But I can say that Dion is a great repaint and a great free figure, and that Fun Publications did a great job making it feel like the guy he's recolored into rather than just making him a "free orange Hot Shot." And furthermore, he's a callback to a character that's not often explored and has a lot of potential, while simultaneously injecting life into a universe I would otherwise be sick of. Dion is aces, all around. Final Verdict: A- Pointless Observation: He's a creamsicle Autobot. He needs to fight Sunstorm now.