Cliffbee.com: CyberSlammer Jazz Toy Review

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Individual Review




Name: Jazz
Series: Movie Tie-Ins
Allegiance: Autobot
Alternate Mode: Pontiac Solstice

Thanks to Tiby for loaning me Jazz for this review



CAR MODE
Height: 5.5cm Length: 12cm Width: 7.5cm

   A silver Pontiac with metallic blue windows and headlights, yellow sports lights, red taillights and a black grille with some black vents on the sides. The silver plastic has a nice metallic sheen to it, but the hinges at the back are very visible against this backdrop. His tyres are black with black hubcaps. The proportions are very kiddie here, which detracts from the Pontiac to the point where the vehicle model seems generic. There's a ridge on the hood where one of the seams doesn't line up properly, which retracts even more, making this a pretty poor vehicle mode.

   The play value really relates to the gimmick, which is accessible in robot mode. He rolls very well and there are rubber belts on the rear tyres to assist the gimmick. Jazz has a rear axle so he rolls quite straight, which is nice. For some reason, Tiby's jazz seems to roll along a little when placed on a table, which is an annoying quirk. There's a switch underneath but it doesn't do anything in this mode, except to transform it.

   With comical proportions and a base colour which shows up the hinges and seams a little more than I'd like, Jazz's car mode is poor even by the lower standards of the CyberSlammers. The play value here is minimal, too, so this is not a good car mode.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   Slide the white switch underneath back and the cabin pops up, revealing the robot. The front slides back slightly.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 11cm Width: 7cm

   A silver robot with black arms and a false black grille on the chest flanked by blue false headlights. His face is black with a blue eyevisor. As on the vehicle mode, there's not much colour here - and there's significantly less colour here than on the deluxe Jazz. Unusually, there is no Autobot logo here, or anywhere on Jazz for that matter. The front of the car is his toes. The colour layout is overly simplified here - something which is usually done well on the Slammers.

   I'm not impressed with this robot mode. There are no legs, which means that the front of the vehicle doesn't really look like feet. I've seen some fans compare the CyberSlammers to the Throttlebots - but they latter have legs, and while they're short, they ensure that the Throttlebot robot forms are robots - despite the bad proportions. The shape here is far from humanoid, the head and fists are the only instantly recognisable body parts at a glance. The arms are simply the doors, and unlike the G1 equivalents (Throttlebots, Battlechargers), they don't lift out to the sides at all. In this case, the forward pointing black fists are a distinct positive. The gap between arms and torso is relatively well defined, at least. While the arms lift up, springs ensure they spring back down, so we can't even use the arms to help with a humanoid shape. The elbows are sculpted bent anyway, so with the arms down he's pointing his fist forward.

   The gimmick doesn't really justify the poor robot shape (or the chibi vehicle). The idea is that you push down the robot onto the base and it'll roll forward. Okay, so pushing him down does reform the vehicle mode as they planned - which is nice - but from a standing start he rolls around a metre. A little more if you push him along as you do it, but this isn't enough to really impress. This doesn't really compare to the Throttlebots which will happily zip across a larger room - it's about as impressive as the Battlechargers (but sturdier). The gimmick is dumbed right down for a young audience (we're talking 3 year olds), but I still don't see why such a poor gimmick was implemented when a better gimmick such as a pullback motor would have worked better, and allowed a better robot mode.

   A disappointing robot mode. While the gimmick is lame anyway, what really annoys me is that the paint job is so poor, even compared to the other CyberSlammers. As usual, the bodyshape is awful, so the end result is a bad robot mode by the standards of CyberSlammers. With an unimpressive gimmick - I can see kids becoming bored with it awfully quickly, I can't see today's kids really appreciating this concept. Judging by the slow movement of CyberSlammers in stores around here, I don't think they've been that successful, and Jazz is one of the weaker ones.

VARIATIONS

   None that I'm aware of.

OVERALL

   A poor toy even by CyberSlammer standards, Jazz has a very kiddie vehicle mode with obvious seams and an underpainted robot mode. The robot mode's shape is not worse than other CyberSlammers, but the lack of effort hurts. With a lame gimmick, the rest really needed to work well, but doesn't - 1.5/10

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