Cliffbee.com: Beastbox Toy Review

Toy Reviews
Individual Review




Name: Beastbox
Series: Generation 1
Allegiance: Decepticon
Function: Interrogator
Alternate Mode: Microcassette



CASSETTE MODE
Height: 3.5cm Depth: 0.5cm Width: 5cm

   A purple microcassette with orange painted tape details, Beastbox has black painted spools and a black tape indicator. The lower edge is grey and this section covers up Squawkbox's face - although the pink mouth peeks out. There aren't as many cassette markings as on earlier cassettes - Beastbox bears "A" and "60" in black, but that's really it. The orange on purple looks pretty silly, and to be honest the paint mask is quite lazy.

   The difference in detail on this cassette and the 1984 vintage is unmistakable, and Beastbox got the raw end of the deal. The loss of moulded teeth on the spools really hurts, and the orange paint is rather vague and simple compared to the more complex tape stickers on most of the earlier microcassettes.

   On the one hand this is almost a third mode, since Beastbox's gorilla mode and his combination with Squawktalk are the main themes of this toy. On the other hand, I'm disappointed that this mode sucks purely due to a lack of effort. The shortcomings are cut corners, not engineering impossibilities.

TRANSFORMATION TO GORILLA MODE

   Swing the bottom out to form the ape legs, flip up his feet. Swing the sides down to form the arms, extend the arms. Flip out the head, stand him up. You'll want to attach the guns to his back, since Squawkbox's face is now clearly visible on his rump.

GORILLA MODE
Height: 4cm Depth: 5cm Width: 5cm

   Again mainly purple, with the orange thankfully hidden underneath the chrome silver missiles on his back. The legs and upper arms are light grey - the same light grey that every second 'Con of this era seems to have. The face is very simple, in a brutish way (which fits the bio note). The face is the same pink as that on his rump - which the guns do a good job of hiding. There are silver stickers on each shoulder bearing purple Decepticon logos. This is a good colour scheme - much better than the cassette mode's, even if there's little painted detail and only two stickers.

   The gorilla mode beats the cassette mode all round. The shape is kinda cool - even if it is a stylised ape - Beastbox is almost like a droid built for destruction, which works for him. The guns on his back and the piston-like arms make him look quite powerful despite his size. The square stickers on his shoulders look cool and give this figure just enough definition. I would have liked a little more detail in the face, but overall I'm not complaining.

   The articulation here is really geared towards allowing the toy to transform rather than play value - but Beastbox manages to have some poseability. The arms swing and the feet lift up, allowing him to stand a little. The head can also lift up and down. Sure, everything is for the transformation, but Beastbox does get some movement out of it.

   A much, much better effort than the cassette mode. While it's nowhere near the best beast amongst the microcassette Transformers, it's a nice gorilla mode, and makes him worthwhile for me. The only major setback is the reliance on the guns - he really does need them to cover the crap on his back.

VARIATIONS

   None that I'm aware of. Beastbox was sold exclusively with Squawktalk.

OVERALL

   The better of Squawkbox's two halves despite his awful cassette mode. Beastbox's gorilla mode is quite nice, and is enough to make him worthwhile. Of course, if you have Squawktalk this guy has another facet. Beastbox doesn't come cheap - he's fairly hard to find, but if you like the microcassette transformers the gorilla mode makes him worth considering - 6/10

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