Cliffbee.com: Universe SpyChanger Prowl Toy Review

Toy Reviews
Individual Review




Name: Prowl [Again]
Series: Transformers Universe
Allegiance: Autobot
Alternate Mode: Police Car

(Note: This is the third version of this mould, and the third time it's been called Prowl. Considering that it's clearly a Red Alert, I'm going to refer to this guy as Red Alert)



CAR MODE
Height: 2cm Length: 7.5cm Width: 3cm

   Red Alert turns into a white fire chief's car with red trim around the bottom, a red spoiler, red central strip on the hood and red and silver strobe rack on top. I've no doubt that most Fire Departments would love the sort of funding that would enable them to buy sports models, but doubt many would have it. Still, he looks quite nice, and the continuation of silver onto his windows and front lights & grille works really well. The tyres are black plastic with silver hubcaps and have axles.

   This paint job is a _vast_ improvement of Prowl 2, the first incarnation of this mould. Most of the finer detail of the mould was lost on that rather crappy paint job, but now it's used to full effect. The lighter colours help, but it's great to see that they've painted the moulded taillights red to bring them out from the white plastic background. The badly placed giant Autobot symbol on his hood is gone, instead he has the "Fire Chief" motif that G1 Red Alert had with a smaller Autobot symbol stamped above. The "Fire Chief" motif also graces the sides, and they've gotten rid of the random gold trim on the bottom of the doors.

   He has axles so he can roll freely & straight, and he's designed to be able to use a Hot Wheels style track. This is one of the better Spychanger moulds, and this is the best paint job it's had. The colours are really nice, and make this guy a very nice car. The G1 Red Alert theme increases it's appeal.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   Pretty simple. Pull down the rear to form the legs, fold down the hood to form the chest, pull out the arms, and remove the gun from between his shins. This is a feature the original six moulds of this type didn't have, and it's a nice feature.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 7cm Width: 4cm

   Red Alert's robot mode adds black and grey to the car mode colours. Basically, we have black shins & feet, grey thighs and groin, red & white chest, white arms, black gun and a silver head with grey eyes. The face is actually silver painted on a grey head, with the eyes unpainted - a nifty way of achieving the desired effect. Pretty typically GoBot/Spychanger mouldwise, although the "Fire Chief" on the chest is very G1. The small Autobot logo works better than the huge one Prowl 2 sported.

   Like the car mode, this colour scheme really reminds me of G1 Red Alert, and looks very good. I wonder why the marketing department at Hasbro have decided that "Prowl" will be the name of second repaint - it's obvious that the guys who designed this guy had Red Alert in mind. They did a good job of making this toy Red Alert, but marketing messed that up.

   The arms are long, although not as long as Gearhead & his offspring. The slot between his legs is deep enough that he has an exposed axle, I think this is the only Spychanger mould that has an exposed axle, actually.

   I can't flaw this robot mode. The colours work, the proportions are all fine, and poseability is what you'd expect of a Spychanger (the shoulders rotate freely).

VARIATIONS

   A repaint of Prowl 2, who was also repainted as G1 Prowl just before this guy came out. No actual variations that I'm aware of, however.

OVERALL

   This is a good Gobot mould, which had to wait seven years to be released as a Spychanger, and then had to wait another three years to get a decent paint job. In my Prowl 2 review I expressed my disappointment at the downright lazy paintjob ruining the toy, and now I'll praise the designer for getting it right this time. The Red Alert paint job is done right - it works aesthetically, there are no bad aspects and it's well worth it as a repaint - even if you have a previous version - regardless of whether or not you like the toy he's packaged with, if you like Spychangers, get this toy - 9/10

"Transformers" and other indica trademarks of Hasbro and/or Takara.