Discussion in 'Transformers Toy Discussion' started by jbarmadillo, Mar 30, 2009.
Probably would have liked Flywheels better if he hadn't come out after Battletrap
APC Attack Prime for me today
Ah Smokescreen! Another character underutilised in the comics. To the old school Tf comics fan, only Tracks rivals Smokescreen in the 'stunningly beautiful Diaclone era carbot that never got a moment in the spotlight' stakes.
As much as I adored Bluestreak, Smokescreen had a more rugged charm. The much loved Datsun model with added sports car decal, a chunkier fender and a hot new spoiler. A la 280ZX 'Turbo'. The idea of a sleek supercar like Bluestreak is super cool, but what about one souped up? To a kid that thrilled to the likes of Mad Max and Smokey and the Bandit, of course I was going to love Smokescreen.
So it's a bit of a pity that the animation model gave him a super dorky 'fat cowl'. Like, I get you want to differentiate from Prowl and Bluestreak as much as you can, but that is not a great solution. I remember looking at pictures of Smokescreen, as drawn by Jeff Anderson, in Target:2006 and wincing, and being forever grateful to Will Simpson for going off model in 'Devastation Derby'.
And if I've given the impression that Smokescreen did nothing in the comics, then I've misled you. He got some action in 1986, being a featured character in the aforementioned 'Devastation Derby', where he memorably squashes Sparkplug with his 'facsimile construct', and getting some good moments in 'Target:2006'. He even gets some great moments in 'legacy of Unicron', wracked with survivor's guilt for letting Inferno sacrifice himself.
So what's my beef? Well, I kinda have to admit to having an incredible soft spot for the '85 cars, or at least the five introduced in TF:UK#53. 'Rock'n'Roll Out' is, quite rightfully, remembered as a cheesey story, with it's Bruce Springsteen locum. Bu the thing is...that cheese doesn't hit until the second part. That first part, with the 'rebirth' of those five warriors was totally awesome, in the most literal sense. It was an excellent bit of world building that made you feel more connected to the mythology of the story.
AND this was the first time I'd seen new characters introduced. I'd always felt like I was getting into stuff late, particularly Transformers, but here I was...getting in on the ground floor on a new set of characters. It was incredibly exciting. So yeah, I always get a little huffy when I think about how these guys never got their moment in the spotlight.
I've talked twice before about what a design classic yer G1 Datsun 'bot is. And it's so good it can bear the burden of a third repaint/retool. And with the new colour scheme it really gets to shine once more. Smokescreen is an absolutely lovely looking toy. The minor retools and that deco do more than enough to distinguish it from it's brethren, making me all the more bitter about the stupid animation model. I can honestly look at this figure, even the facesculpt, and not feel like I'm looking at Prowl or Bluestreak. So with him being such a stunner, it's kind of a pity that Smokescreen is the most beat up looking of my three Datsuns.
So what's really interesting, to me at least, about WfC Smokescreen is the new headsculpt (it's new to me. I'm still waiting on Barricade turning up). Maybe I'm reading too much into it and my bias is leaking everywhere, but it feels like they've tried to honour the G1 animation model whilst trying to make it look much less dorky. A for effort, definitely, but it does still wind up looking a bit...weird! It looks a bit overworked round the jawline. Somehow, and I'm not quite sure how, it still manages to be an incredibly handsome looking figure. Even if that sour expression feels poorly suited to the character.
Any Smokescreen update is a tricky one to get right. Do you stay true to the toys and get the numbers on the chest, or do you go with the character model and go for Autobot insignia? It feels like you're doomed either way. Personally, I'm pretty happy with how they've handled this, but then I'm a big fan of this mould and the fact his clear wheels have been rendered near opaque does a lot to win me over.
It's funny, isn't it, how there's certain situations where we're happy to be rinsed. Personally, I'm delighted to have got all three of my essential Seekers and my Datsun bros redos all in one line, even though they've made me pay over the odds for three of the figures. But it's 'appropriate' and it really is what I wanted for my collection. As far as further fleecing goes, I guess I've got the Coneheads to look forward to!
Lamp post mode wins here orange is much suited to city than classic SIEGE.
Agree,for Halloween days his face is the best one on TR Mindwipe and Fangry wolf and dragon alt modes are very nice.
Very funny thinking !
Still this little Mexican chap.
I'd wanted to write about him properly with good photos for so long, finally got around to it last week and as a result, the glow of appreciation remains
All the best
Star Saber today:
I'm a bit of a "Movieverse" mood for today....
Despite its small size, SS Jazz is still a pretty fun figure to mess around with. Mine has some paint scratches on the front engine hood piece after almost 2 years of handling (And I have no choice but to spray-painted it with bright silver paint to cover them up, causing mismatched colors), but the figure is still here with me and that's what matters more.
Studio Series Jazz here for today.
"C'mon, let's teach this Galavtron what it means to mess with the Autobots..."
Good luck with that, Smokescreen
From TF:UK#81 'Target:2006'
G1 Canadian Slag
TFA Starscream today.
He looks like a badass with that executioner's hood.
Not sure where the gun came from. It's nice and chunky, but feels like a garbage KO. I think I got it in a lot ages ago and tossed it in a parts bin.
Still, it looks beefy in Prime's hand.
Siege Soundwave today
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