Cliffbee.com: Beast Wars II Dirge Toy Review

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Name: Dirge
Series: Beast Wars Second
Allegiance: Destron
Function: Air Officer
Alternate Mode: Saab Grippen Jet



JET MODE
Height: 5.5cm Length: 12cm Width: 8cm

   Remember Dirge? The blue and copper F-15? No relation, although both are blue fighter planes. Despite being a different character, BWII Dirge's primary colour is blue. The base colour is a mid blue, with a darker blue paint here and there. He's got a transparent pink canopy and silver stickers with Predacon symbols on his wings. The undercarriage is silver plastic, and all three wheels can retract (though none roll).

   More blue than the esteemed G1 character, this is a very nice colour scheme. Even the bright pink of the canopy can't ruin the blues which work well together. There's a fair bit of kibble underneath, it doesn't really hurt from above, though you can clearly see his limbs from the side.

   There's really no play value in this mode - it's all in the transform and the robot mode. But there's not really anything wrong with it. The colours work, the kibble isn't perfect but could be a lot worse. It's worth pointing out that while he's a Destron, the Destrons in the Beast Wars era used the Predacon symbol - even on the non-animal toys.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   Theoretically, push down on the nose and that's it. In reality, you have to fold up the landing gear first. Once you've done that he does essentially transform. The tail section actually slides up when it transforms, which is kind of cool. Position the arms and legs, and remove the two halves of his gun from inside his legs.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 10cm Width: 8cm

   The blues are complimented with silver plastic on robot mode, with a silver painted head. The silver of his head is different to the silver plastic used, but it's close enough to work. The chest, lower legs and forearms are blue, thighs and upper arms silver. The back of the head and the eyes are transparent pink, which gives him a lightpipe (something neither MW Thundercracker or Skywarp, of which he is a repaint, had). He has a mouthplate, and no cone, so looks a lot less like the fear monger from G1.

   I didn't know for quite a while that this guy wasn't the same character, I originally got him on the basis that he was (being the Dirge fan I am). But I don't mind, it's a worthy reuse of the name anyway, and the robot mode has a great colour scheme.

   This mode is quite poseable. The hips, knees, elbows and shoulders are ball joints. The head is, too, but it's almost immobile since the metal rod that his chest swivels down on is pushing up behind it. Good play value and a lot of poses are possible.

   The gun is a blue long shotgun rifle. It looks nice, and you can remove the silencer from the front to give him a pistol, if you like. It's actually possible for him to hold both the front and rear handles on the gun. It'll point to the side, and you can't turn his head to face that way, but it still looks quite impressive, like he's on guard or something.

VARIATIONS

   A repaint of MW Thundercracker & Skywarp as mentioned, although Japan never actually got those toys. He came packaged alone or with Tasmania Kid (aka BW Snarl). This same mould was later used in RiD as Skyfire, but no variants as such I'm aware of. Dirgegun, a Waspinator retool, is an upgrade of Dirge.

OVERALL

   A great colour scheme and a good name reuse, this is one repaint I do recommend, if you can find him fairly cheap. The robot mode has good play value, with good poseability and a well designed gun. Probably a more realistic colour scheme than most other incarnations of this mould too. With the lightpipe and matching head, he's better than either of his Machine Wars predecessors - 8/10

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