Cliffbee.com: Headstrong Toy Review

Toy Reviews
Individual Review




Name: Headstrong
Series: Generation 1
Allegiance: Decepticon
Function: Ground Assault
Alternate Mode: Rhinoceros



RHINOCEROS MODE
Height: 8.5cm Length: 12.5cm Width: 7cm

   A yellow rhino with black legs, red hips/shoulders, a red head and a black horn, Headstrong has a pretty good colour scheme. There are silver stickers in various spots, which enhance the overall look, most give the impression of metal panels, with riveted borders. On either side, between hip and shoulder, he has Decepticon logo stickers, and hopefully there's a rubsign on top of his back just behind the head.

   Considering this is a 1986 toy, it's a pretty good animal mode, although it's stockier than a rhino normally is, and the legs are too close together. I can forgive the inaccuracies, since they give him a more menacing look, and slim him down somewhat. The central yellow block does have some obvious hints that he's a limb - the rear is flat, as is the front although the head attached onto this hides it somewhat. Speaking of heads, if you look underneath there's a small red bit hanging just in front of his front legs - which is the robot head. It doesn't stand out badly, but it's there.

   The poseability is what you'd except of a G1 animal mode, which is next to nothing compared to the later Beast Wars animals. His hindlegs can swing back, although this is actually part of the transformation. The head can twist around, in fact you can turn it upside down if you really like. While that's not really useful, there's no reason for the head being able twist other than poseability, so it's worth mentioning.

   Adding to the play value is the fact you can attach Predaking's right foot plate on top as a double barrelled cannon, giving him an attack mode. It's not really anything special, but it gives him a ranged attack.

   The head is done quite well, and the horn is very cool, being, black and imposing, and it's even made of a soft plastic so it wont snap off so easily. The lower jaw is moulded, and isn't hollow underneath as some jaws are. The ears look suitably like a mammal's ears, and there are rivets on his cheeks and around his neck which is cool.

   Overall, I'm happy with this rhino mode, the colours work, he looks menacing enough and the overall shape is decent. It's not as good as that of Rhinox, but it's not really meant to be, Rhinox had 10 years more toy technology at his disposal and doesn't have to become the leg of a larger robot.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   Extend the rear section to form the robot legs, swing the hindlegs up and into the calves of the robot. Rotate the hip panels 90 so that they are flush with the table (they'll be the same way up as they were in rhino mode). Push the front legs into his chest, flip up the robot head, swing down the forearms from the red rhino shoulders. Give him gun and sword if you feel inclined. There's a little tab that swings out from between his legs to act as a heelspurs, and while he doesn't really need it, it does make a gap between his legs.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 17.5cm Width: 7cm

   Again largely yellow, but with a lot more black. His chest and groin are yellow, his waist is black, as are his legs and upper arms, he has red shoulderpads and forearms, red ankles and a red head with a yellow painted face. This face is a lemon yellow rather than the straight yellow of his torso, although from memory his face is painted green in the cartoon. Oh, there are two black panels on his chest, which are the soles of the feet of his rhino forelegs, which only stick out my a millimetre or two.

   The rhino head sits behind the robot head, it's a lot taller than the robot head, so it's quite obvious, but they've managed to make it a feature (that's carried over into the cartoon), it doesn't really look like bad kibble. More of an issue are the shoulders - the joints are a little lower than they really should be, which looks a little odd.

   As mentioned, there's a gap between his legs, which is good to see since they're effectively one unit (a single piece of plastic). The feet are hollow in the middle, since the hindlegs swing through them, and this is probably weakest point of Headstrong's robot mode for me.

   There's not really much articulation here - his legs and head don't move, although he has good arm movement for a combiner, with two hinges per elbow and the swinging shoulders. The joints are part of the transformation, granted, but they give him decent arm poseability.

   Overall, it's a decent robot mode, I like the way they made a feature of the rhino head, but wish he had better feet.

VARIATIONS

   There's a plastic chest version and a rarer rarer metal version, which has a metal backplate - Headstrong has the most die cast of any Predacon. Sadly, the metal backplate makes this version very unstable in robot mode.

OVERALL

   He's not the best of the Predacons, but Headstrong has a pretty nice colour scheme, and both modes are quite nice. Of course, the main reason you'll get him is so can form Predaking, and as part of the set he's certainly worthwhile. Predacons are generally quite expensive now, so whether or not I recommend him depends on whether you can justify the cost - if you can, he's a nice toy, albeit with a few minor flaws - 6.5/10

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