Cliffbee.com: Chop Shop Toy Review

Toy Reviews
Individual Review




Name: Chop Shop
Series: Generation 1
Allegiance: Decepticon
Function: Thief
Alternate Mode: Lamellicorn Beetle



BEETLE MODE
Height: 4cm Length: 13cm Width: 10cm

   A brown lamellicorn with red eyes and some white patterns on his head, Chop Shop is actually rather organic looking, mainly due to the spurs on his legs. He has a Decepticon logo sticker on his abdomen, as well as a rubsign on the left side of his abdomen. For those who are unfamiliar with the Deluxe Insecticons, Chop Shop is the same type of beetle as Shrapnel, with the large pincher-like growths on his beetle head.

   The red eyes are actually on orange plastic, but aside from these panels and small antennae on his head, this mode is all brown, the orange more a feature of the robot mode. His horns are big and curved, with spurs on the inside edges, in keeping with the spurs on his legs, although those are on the outside edges. All six legs are independently poseable, the front and middle sets have ball joints at their hips, the rear set have ball joints at the knees and swivels at the hips. What impresses me about the legs is that despite being on ball joints and being fairly slender, they're easily able to support his weight. The joints on mine (which is near mint) are firm enough to hold him up without any trouble.

   Chop Shop's thorax (that's the middle third of the body) is die cast metal, and painted the same brown as the rest of the beetle's plastic. Being the central part, it doesn't really stand out, but it does add to his weight, making him nice and solid.

   The abdomen isn't actually visible on beetles, since it's underneath the wing covers. On Chop Shop the rear third is a solid block with a seam in the middle, which is pretty much what beetle wing covers look like, anyway. He's got jet engines on the top of his wing covers, pointing backwards. These jets are the least organic part of this very organic G1 animal, which serve to confirm that he is indeed a robot. They look pretty cool, and confirm that this beetle can fly without actual wings.

   This is a far more convincing beetle than the more robotic Shrapnel, so in pure authenticity terms he's got the better animal mode. I really like the legs of this beetle, and since it's hard to go wrong with a single colour, this is a nice brown beetle mode.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   Flip the wing covers out to the sides, fold the abdomen halves over to become the robot legs. The feet flip out, the rear insect legs actually swing inside the lower legs for storage in robot mode - a nice anti-kibble feature. Pull the hips apart, pull the arms out from the sides of the thorax, which will cause the fists to pop out and the chest panels to slide down and to the sides, revealing the robot head. Extend the robot arms down and give him his weapons and you're done.

   One of the simpler Deluxe Insecticons, but it's still a fairly elegant transformation. It does leave a fair bit of kibble, but none of it really gets in the way.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 15cm Width: 14cm

   A brown robot with orange fists, shoulders, thighs and feet, Chop Shop has the standard red eyes. His most distinct feature as a robot is the pointy insect bits that are prominent. The horns are on his shoulders, sticking up either side of his head, and look good there. The forearm have two beetle legs each, hanging off to the sides, largely out of the way, but noticeable nonetheless.

   His robot head is quite organic looking, with dark red eyes, a single orange mouthpart and bit orange antennae sticking up and to the rear. It fits in with the overall motif, matching the horns and visible insect legs.

   The poseability is about what you'd expect of a Deluxe Insecticon - his knees bend, his hips have a bit of wiggle room and his arms flap. The orange shoulders are largely hidden behind the brown chest panels, so any forward shoulder motion would be useless even if he had any. These hidden shoulders (and upper arms) probably constitute this robot mode's biggest flaw.

   The colours work pretty well, and the overall motif is good, so Chop Shop's robot mode looks pretty good overall. The poseability is reasonable but not spectacular, and he's only really dragged down by the shoulders.

VARIATIONS

   None that I'm aware of.

OVERALL

   As with all Deluxe Insecticons, Chop Shop's a good toy. While he's got some kibble, he's not a mass of limbs getting in the way of himself as some insect Transformers are (especially some Beast Wars toys, like Drill Bit). The inevitable comparisons to Shrapnel are in Chop Shop's favour, but since he doesn't appear in the cartoon, he's not as well known as a character. Ignoring his obscurity, Chop Shop gets 7.5/10

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