Cliffbee.com: Powerglide Toy Review

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Individual Review




Name: Powerglide
Series: Generation 1
Allegiance: Autobot
Function: Warrior
Alternate Mode: A-10 Bomber



BOMBER MODE
Height: 2.5cm Length: 7cm Width: 9cm

   A brick red A-10 bomber with grey bombs underneath each wing, Powerglide, like most Minibots, is fairly low in detail, going for "cute" rather than trying to be a scale model. Still, he's easily identifiable as an A-10, for those who know their bombers. Aside from the grey bombs, the red is only broken up by stickers on top of the fuselage. Towards the back is a rubsign between the turbines, inside a rather obvious indent. There's a stripe sticker between the wings, which is silver with mech details, and on the 2004 reissue an Autobot logo just in front of the stripe.

   For those unfamiliar with the model, the A-10 is essentially a coffin shaped plane with wings that stick out to the sides. They have twin turbines, on stalks, out to each side behind the wings, and a wide tail with big stabilisers on each side.

   As I said, Powerglide is designed to be cute rather than accurate. The bombs under his wings are the robot arms, so there's a lot of creative license used. A real A-10 would have an array of bombs on racks, instead of one huge bomb per wing. Despite the simplified bombs, he's actually pretty detailed for a Minibot. There are three wheels (two under the tail, one under the front of the fuselage). He has a red canopy, with seams, and there's a little front mounted gun underneath the nose, which is a really cool touch.

   There's no play value here - the wheels are solid cast, really only serving as legs to stand on. I don't expect anything more, mind you. Besides, when you're 8 a plane this size can provides hours of fun - all you have to do is run around making plane sounds!

   Overall, this is a pretty cool little bomber for what it is. Powerglide looks like his cartoon counterpart, plus he succeeds in looking cute, while still managing to look like a real plane.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   Pull the tail out to form the legs, rotate the nose 180 to reveal the face. Fold up the wings and swing them down to his sides, unfold the arms. While this is a simple transformation, they way that his wings are stowed is quite clever. If you have the 2004 reissue you'll notice that the wings and head have internal notches - the original never have these. Also, the original's legs aren't as firm as the reissue's, again there are internal notches, which make the legs quite tight.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 8.5cm Width: 6cm

   Again mainly brick red, Powerglide has grey thighs and arms, and a grey face with black eyes. He has a mouthplate and a screw in his forehead - which the cartoon rather nicely justified by making it a laser. Red and grey tend to work quite well together, and as a result, Powerglide has a pretty good colour scheme. The stripe sticker is now on the lower half of his torso (there's no real groin here), the rubsign on his knees and the Autobot symbol on the reissue version is on his chest.

   The wings are pressed against the side of the torso, which looks pretty good, and is a great way of reducing kibble. Unfortunately, the lower legs are a solid piece, being the tail section of the plane mode. The tailfins of the plane are now his feet, and are way out to the sides. The thighs are quite skinny, which accentuates the solid block somewhat. While the legs don't ruin his look, they do take some getting used to, and it's a significant shortcoming of Powerglide's robot mode.

   Powerglide is the most poseable Minibot, thanks to his transformation. His shoulders rotate 360, and his arms can lift out to the sides. His elbows can fold in, so overall it allows him to put his hands on his hips, or salute a superior (although I'm not sure that's really his style). The head also turns, and while this isn't really that useful because he has wings on either side of his head, it's a point of articulation.

   Overall, I like this mode a fair bit. The solid piece that forms his feet is a major downside, but the colours work really well and the arm poseability is great for a Minibot.

VARIATIONS

   As mentioned, there have been two releases. The 2004 reissue has internal notches so that the wings, head and legs click into place better - a lot of older Powerglides (including my original) tend to sag in robot mode. The reissue also comes with an Autobot logo sticker on it's chest.

OVERALL

   The plane mode is pretty good, the colours work and the robot mode works, despite the bad feet. Overall he's quite show accurate, and Powerglide was a cool cartoon character, so I'd definitely recommend him to G1 fans. If you prefer detailed super poseable toys, you'll probably not like him, but he is quite cute and inexpensive - so I'd still recommend him if you get the chance to buy him - 8/10

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