Cliffbee.com: Siren Toy Review

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Individual Review




Name: Siren
Series: Generation 1
Allegiance: Autobot
Function: Incendiary Damage Control
Alternate Mode: Fire Chief's Car



CAR MODE
Height: 5.5cm Length: 13cm Width: 6.5cm

   A grey sports car with red painted windows, a red stripe down the hood with a "FIRE DEPT" badge and red stickers on the doors with the same logo, Siren has a stroberack on the roof with blue strobes. There are red stickers on the rear fenders with the words "FIRE CHIEF", not that one would expect a fire chief to ride around town in a sports car (Red Alert started it!). Siren has black plastic tyres, with black hubcaps. Two small black guns mount on the hood, for those fire-combat situations. There's a silver "EMERGENCY" sticker along the top of the front window, rounding out an unusual colour scheme. While I wouldn't call this a bad colour scheme, the grey is the colour of car primer and red windows don't really work. The colours do work together, however, so while Siren's realism is stretched, he's quite easy on the eyes.

   While I'm not sure what type of car this is meant to represent, it resembles a Mazda RX-7 with pop-up headlights and rudimentary moulded taillights. There's a gap at the back for a license plate, as well as doorseams and pinstripes seams. The pinstripe seams are completely unnecessary, while we have moulded doorhandles hidden underneath the door stickers, which is of no use. While the moulded detail isn't lazy, it's very badly handled, making this toy look fairly simple - so I'm glad we have a painted hood and some stickering.

   There's a fairly obvious hinge behind the stroberack and a socket behind this at the top edge of the rear window for the black handgun. The hinges on his roof allow the lid to open and reveal a cabin in which Quig can ride. The helmet forms a grey seat for Quig, although this seat slides over the seated Muzzle's back without attaching to Siren as such. The cabin and rolling wheels represent most of the play value here - the three optional weapons rounding things off.

   While there's very little realism here, it's not a bad car mode as such - rather one that should have been better. A more logical theme would have been nice, but my biggest complaint is that Siren got red windows. This is his weaker mode and is the weakest vehicle mode of the small Autobot Headmasters.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   Remove Quig if you have him in the cockpit, fold over the front to form his boots. Flip up the rear window to reveal his shoulders and pull the arms out from his sides. Attach Quig as the head, attach the helmet and the small guns as antennae.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 16.5cm Width: 10.5cm

   Now a mix of grey and blue, with the blue plastic on his arms, head and torso the same mid blue on the strobes. The outsides of the arms, helmet and boots are grey while the thighs are forearms are black. His face is light blue with red eyes, and is really well sculpted. The antennae on his head are black, along with the handguns. This is a really nice colour scheme, and while I didn't mind the red as such, the blue works with the grey very nicely, so I don't miss the red which is now limited to stripes on his boots.

   The boots are a single piece (the hood of the car) but there's a grey seam between the red stripes, giving the impression of separate boots. There's a grey panel in the middle of his chest which forms a nice centrepiece, in the middle of this panel Siren bears a grey sticker with an Autobot logo on it. The rear wheels sit on the outsides of his upper arms.

   The shoulders rotate on two axes, giving Siren good arm poseability, although the arms represent all of his movement. The black gun can rest in either hand and the grey chestplate can fold down to reveal his tech spec meter. Unlike the previous year's Headmasters, which had three tumblers, this mechanism is simply a plate that slides down when the head is inserted, although it still gives a reading of (SPD, STR & INT).

   While the car mode fell a long way short of it's potential this is a good robot mode with great colours and a much more logical design. The conjoined boots count as his only flaw, but the seam is quite clever, to the point where I'm not bothered about the boots. The arm articulation is great for G1, rounding out a great robot mode.

Quig
   A short mid blue Nebulon with black legs and painted green face. Siren's face is clearly visible on his back - which lacks the fold over panel of the larger, more poseable Headmasters of 1987. Quig can bend at the hips to sit down, but otherwise he's really all about the head mode.

VARIATIONS

   None that I'm aware of. Siren was repainted as Shuta in Japan, who was a white police car with blue windows. Siren was available in Japan albeit only through mail order.

OVERALL

   The robot mode is great, with poseable arms, clever placement of the various elements and great colours. Siren's car mode is nowhere near as good as it should have been though, and I find it frustrating that all it really needed was some paint and sticker changes. I still believe Siren is a good toy, but he's not as good as Nightbeat, despite being a stronger mould - 6/10

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