UK fans! Early G1 UK releases brainstorming

Discussion in 'Transformers General Discussion' started by Nevermore, Dec 6, 2006.

  1. Nevermore

    Nevermore It's self-perpetuating a parahumanoidarianised!

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    So I thought I figured out these crazy-ass European G1 releases, with the MB toys in German/French/Dutch/Spanish packaging in 1985, the Hasbro toys English/French/Dutch/Spanish packaging in 1986 and then the split-up languages (English-only for the UK, French/Dutch fo France, the Netherlands and Belgium and Spanish for spain) from 1987 onwards, until English and Spanish would be merged again. And Italy with GiG and their crazy-ass variations in Takara-style packaging half of the time, until their market would get more and more streamlined with the rest of Europe with the Pretenders, Micromastes, Action Masters and Classics.
    And Germany got toys in English-only packaging (and later English/Spanish packaging) for the longest time, including those "Original HASBRO Transformer" stickers only the UK toys sported.

    So it's making all sense now, isn't it?

    Well, there's still the early UK stuff. And red feeted Prime, who was found both in the UK (apparently in English-only packaging with a small "Ceji Revel" copyright on the back of the box) and France (presumably in English/French/Dutch/Spanish Hasbro packaging). Maz owns/owned "Ceji" redfoot Prime, and Elvin owns/owned four-language redfoot Prime.

    And then godsenddeath tried to give me a detailed recount of what he remembers having seen in stores and whatnot.

    And, lo and behold, a British (!) toy catalog, presumably from... 1984?!?

    [​IMG]

    Wait, I tghought the UK didn't get Transformers toys until 1985, like the rest of Europe? Didn't Hasbro UK even cite this as an excuse for not releasing 20th Anniversary Prime in 2004?

    I'm confused.

    Also, could you UK guys try and compile a list of toys that were available in the UK, if possible including a possible release date?

    Does anyone else own UK toy catalogs? Any toys in packaging still, or leftover cardboards or boxes?
     
  2. Sol Fury

    Sol Fury The British Butcher Administrator News Staff

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    I'll dig about for catalogues. I know I had several of the Ultra Magnus one that also depicted Autobot City, though whether they survived the last 18 years is beyond me.
    I've never seen that catalogue before. It's possible it was only from the first run, with photo instructions, since the only one of those I had was Skywarp, whose instructions fell apart from age and most of the other stuff got lost along the way. Tell a lie I might also have had one of those with Prime, but I've got none of his paperwork anymore.

    As far as releases go, not a clue. I have fuzzy recollections of the toyline, and the dates are almost certainly wrong (Targetmaster Hot Rod and Jetfire couldn't have been out together yet I am certain I had them for the same birthday, and I'm not sure if that was '86 or '87 either).
    I do remember a toy shop with a great big display of Hound though. Think that was in '85 though I have the strangest feeling it was before my brother was born, which would have been '84.

    Here's one thing that can be read as a fact - when I started school full time, my parents got me Twin Twist. That was '86. I'd been getting Minibots of both the first two waves, along with Skywarp and Optimus, for a good deal of time before that. I was at school when I got Jetfire so '86 would be the earliest. Astrotrain was on the shelves when the movie hit, along with a whole aisle of others. I seem to remember Sandstorm, but I'm not sure on that.

    My brother also swears he saw the Predacons in stores over here.
     
  3. helix

    helix Well-Known Member

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    ok form what i can remeber, and between me/friends owning (no dates though sorry)
    optimus prime
    ultra magnus
    hot rod (not Target master version but it may have been released)
    kup
    soundwave
    grimlock + rest of dinobots bar Swoop
    skyfire
    jazz (remember getting him from woolworths)
    hound
    lots of action masters.
    crocodile headmaster - cant remember name sorry.
    galvatron
    metroplex
    cyclonus
    sideswipe.

    also had the small transformers (like minicons) bases. a rocket pad and a space shuttle. they rocked.

    remember overlord being in toys r us. must be early 90's that

    sure theres many others but 100% sure they were here.
     
  4. godsenddeath

    godsenddeath . TFW2005 Supporter

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    For the sake of brevity, I've approached this in a different way - namely listing what WASN'T released by Hasbro U.K or what was held back a year.

    My memory from Classics onwards is a little spotty, can someone fill in the gaps?

    and From G2 onwards, i have almost no knowledge... so hopefully someone can chime in there too.


    If anyone wants to suggest amendments to what wasn't released here, proof would be appreciated.




    1984

    Megatron, Suntreaker, Wheeljack, Trailbreaker , Prowl, Ironhide were held
    back until 85.


    1985


    Blaster, Omnibots, Deluxe Autobots, Deluxe Insecticons, Constructions*
    Perceptor, Shockwave. Swoop**

    Astrotrain and Blitzwing were shown in the 1985
    U.K/Ireland product leaflet, but personally i didn't see them until '86 (can
    anyone confirm an 85 release?


    *Yes I know they apeared in 1989 - those were not from Hasbro UK.

    ** A friend assures me that he did see Swoop here, but i can't offer proof on that.



    1986

    Blaster tapes, Frenzy and Ratbat, Reflector. Rodimus Prime and Wreck-Gar were held back until 1987.

    Rumored toys that would have been released in small quantities:
    (Awating confirmation)

    Trypticon is said to have been released in small quantites - was not shown in any packed in product leaflefts however. May have been a 'test market' type of product.

    Edit: reported as sold in Taylor and McKenna toystore chain.


    Gnaw/Predacons either offered in very small quantites, or not released at all.

    Sky Lynx - source was not too credible however.


    1987

    Clones and Doublespy, Fortress Maximus, Sixshot, Monsterbots. Slugfest and Overkill.

    Fortress Maximus was offered as a prize in a coloring contest, in conjunction with the Toymaster
    chain. Rumors abound of it being offered as a retail item, but no solid proof is at hand.



    1988


    Grandslam and Raindance, Squawlktalk and Beastbox.

    2nd wave of standard Pretenders were not offered (Bugly, Finback, Iguanus, Skyhigh, Groundbreaker, Waverider)

    Triggerbots and Triggercons were held back until 1989.

    Pretender vehicles and Pretender beasts also held back until 89.

    1989

    Pretender monsters sold in Woolworths.
     
  5. Nevermore

    Nevermore It's self-perpetuating a parahumanoidarianised!

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    Action Masters, Overlord and the "Classics" are already late Eighties, early Nineties. By that time Hasbro had streamlined the European markets.

    I'm mostly interested about pre-Micromaster/Action Master stuff. The stuff that was NOT necessarily the same all the other European countries got.

    Maybe even pre-Powermasters. The earlier the toys, the more important it is.

    Like, mainland Europe (not counting Italy) didn't get Sunstreaker. The UK apparently did.

    And so on.

    Pretty much everyone got the Powermasters. So that's not really interesting.
     
  6. BigPhill

    BigPhill Well-Known Member

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    I've seen that before. A friend of mine kept all of his Transformers (4) in their boxes and only took then out occasionally.

    He had that catalogue in with his Starscream.
     
  7. Mixmaster

    Mixmaster logh ghot SIS yoD TFW2005 Supporter

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    I think I may still have the orange UK toy catalogue that came with Ultra Magnus and Metroplex. I also used to have that catalogue Midge Ure... I mean Nevermore has pictured, it must've came with Prime, but that catalogue has probably long gone.

    This is a rough order that I received my transformers in:

    Warpath (?)
    Astrotrain (?)
    Shrapnel (?)
    Optimus Prime (1985?)
    Silverbolt (?)
    Air Raid (?)
    Slingshot (?)
    Ultra Magnus (1986)
    Metroplex (1986)
    Rodimus Prime (1986 or 1987)
    Snapdragon (1987)
    Scorponok (1987)

    Had Hubcap and Tailgate aswell, they were purchased in the '85/'86 time frame.

    I remember OP was around for a while, a lot longer than some, I remember him lingering on the shelves of "Taylor and McKenna". Warpath, Astrotrain, and Shrapnel must've been 1985 but I'm not sure, Astrotrain was my first boxed transformer. I'm not sure either about the three aerialbots either, not much help am I?

    I saw Trypticon at the same time Metroplex was out, in "Taylor and McKenna" again, and I saw Jetfire at one point aswell.
     
  8. godsenddeath

    godsenddeath . TFW2005 Supporter

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    Out of curiosity: Was Taylor and McKenna a standalone Toystore?
    Part of a chain of Toystores? Or a Department store?
     
  9. Mixmaster

    Mixmaster logh ghot SIS yoD TFW2005 Supporter

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    It was a chain of toystores I believe, but they got turned into Beatties (ie. renamed) in the very late '80s or early '90s, then finally a few years back those Beatties toystores disappeared.
     
  10. Nevermore

    Nevermore It's self-perpetuating a parahumanoidarianised!

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    Can anyone confirm that Overbite was named "Overbite" and the Sparkabots were "Sparkabots" in the UK, and "Jawbreaker" and "Sparkler Minibots" were oddities from the Marvel UK comics only?
     
  11. godsenddeath

    godsenddeath . TFW2005 Supporter

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    Here's the 1986 UK Product Brochure.

    [​IMG]



    Note the Autobot cars section - all the Autobot cars from 1984 that weren't released in the UK until 1985 (Ironhide, Sunstreaker, Prowl, Trailbreaker, Wheeljack)
    were not offered for a second year

    However several of those that *were* released by in the U.K. in 1984, were offered for a THIRD year.



    Now take a look at the Dutch product leaflet from 1986.

    (taken from http://www.anime.dds.nl/Catalog.htm)


    [​IMG]



    Notice any difference?





    Hasbro NL offered Prowl, Trailbreaker and Wheeljack for a second year, whilst Hasbro UK did not.

    Also note that Magnus is listed as Autobot Leader in the U.K catalouge, but Prime is still there in the Dutch version.




    The same also holds true for the Decepticons. Galvatron on the U.K. version, Megatron on the Dutch version.


    ...and there's the Constructicons and DX Insecticons shown on the Dutch leaflet too.


    [​IMG]
     
  12. Draven

    Draven Banned

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    Midge ure rules. Ultravox remain to this day one of my top 5 bands. Good taste, Nevermore.
    And now, a few comments/answers.
    -Taylor And McKenna was indeed a large (counrty wide, I believe) UK toy store chain in the 80s & 90s. They were (IIRC) originally called Toymaster in the early 80s; I remember buying Action Force toys from there. My G1 Sureshot even still has a T&M pricetag on the box. As Chainclaw said, they became Beatties in the 90s, and then vanished. Note: they had some awesome competitions; the one near me had a competition to win a GI Joe USS Flagg aircraft carrier at one point.
    -The catalogue you showed was the first UK TF catalogue. I have it.
    -Megatron not being released in the first year of TF sales in the UK is backed up by one of the very first UK Marvel G1 comics; they had a section where Hasbro would let us know what was supposed to be coming out soon, and Megatron was a future release at that point.
    -Swoop was never released here. Neither were Omega Supreme, Fortress Maximus, Sky Lynx, or the Constructicons.
    -I believe Overlord (along with Flame, Gripper & Lightspeed) was released over here around 1992.
    -The Deluxe Insecticons, although appearing in catalogues, were not released in the UK.
    -Most of the inserts we got with toys were US ones; I have the one that came with Bombshell, and it's for the Omnibots & Powerdashers. We did have UK ones, though; the STARS (Secret Transformers Autobot Rescue Squad) stuff, and one for some of the Headmasters/Targetmasters. I still have pretty much all the paperwork that came with my G1 stuff. I'll dig it all out if you want pics.
     
  13. Boardwise

    Boardwise is scary - Sig Killer - M Super Mod

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    I can hardly remember what I was doing last week, so I won't be much help here.

    Though I'm sure the Seacon was called Jawbreaker as a friend of mine back then had him, but I have no way of confirming it.
     
  14. godsenddeath

    godsenddeath . TFW2005 Supporter

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    Cool - thanks Pete.

    I do recall my Powerglide having a Reflector insert and being miffed that it was marked offer void outside U.S.

    By any chance..., have you got a copy of that H.O.P.E (Help Optimus Prime Escape)
    flyer? IIRC it had a mail in offer for Targetmaster Hot Rod.
     
  15. The Phazer

    The Phazer Well-Known Member

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    Megatron was released in the UK in 1984 - I have photographic evidence of it, ableit photographic evidence that wouldn't make sense to anyone else.

    It's a picture of me holding my Megatron when I went to see my Mum in the hospital after the birth of my sister. Her DOB is August 1984, so I had to have Megs before that date.

    Phazer
     
  16. Draven

    Draven Banned

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    I do indeed have it; I'm looking at it right now. One half was HOPE (Help Optimus Prime Escape), as you said, and offered Chromedome, TM Hot Rod, and Sureshot (£5.99 + 2 Robot Points each); the other half was for STOP (Seek and Terminate Optimus Prime), and offered Mindwipe and Triggerhappy (£7.99 + 2 Robot Points each). There was also a T shirt offered, for £2.99 + 1 Robot Point.
    The offers expired December 31, 1988.
    You couldn't have had it long; it was definitely not available when the line was launched.
    He was Jawbreaker in the comics; I seem to remember seeing Jawbreaker on his packaging too, although I never owned him.
     
  17. godsenddeath

    godsenddeath . TFW2005 Supporter

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    That's the one! I remember a friend sending in for all of them at the same time, and getting Triggerhappy, Mindwipe, Chromedome, Sureshot.........


    .......and a letter saying 'Sorry Hot Rod is sold out here's your money back.'

    Hard to believe that a toy so coveted for so many years was a mail in around these parts.
     
  18. Nevermore

    Nevermore It's self-perpetuating a parahumanoidarianised!

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    Re Overbite/Jawbreaker:

     
  19. Nevermore

    Nevermore It's self-perpetuating a parahumanoidarianised!

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    Optimus Prime, Grapple, Hoist, Tracks, Inferno, Smokescreen...
    http://lulu-berlu.com/dhtml/home.php?id=801&titre=Transformers&page[2186]=2

    And Broadside.
    http://lulu-berlu.com/dhtml/home.php?id=801&titre=Transformers&page[2186]=2&page[2186]=3

    Were toys available in the UK in this packaging? Or did you always get English-only?

    And Draven: While I appreciate the effort, anything from 1990-onwards is pretty much irrelevant for now. Because by that time, the European markets were pretty much streamlined, with the rare exception such as an Italian version of Galaxy Shuttle. I've seen photos of Overlord in French/Dutch packaging and the Motorvators in Italian packaging. Basically, Overlord and the Motorvators got shoved into Euro "Classics"-style packaging the same way lots of stuff gets shoved into US "Classics"-style packaging these days. ;) 

    I'm really mostly concerned about pre-Micromaster/Pretenders stuff. :) 
     
  20. Mixmaster

    Mixmaster logh ghot SIS yoD TFW2005 Supporter

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    The Metroplex, Rodimus Prime, and Magnus I had, had the plastic wheels. Were the (earlier) rubber tyre variants released in the UK?
     

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