Cliffbee.com: Jolt Toy Review

Toy Reviews
Individual Review




Name: Jolt
Series: Generation 2
Allegiance: Decepticon
Function: Sneak Attack
Alternate Mode: Hot Rod Convertible



CAR MODE
Height: 3.5cm Length: 11.5cm Width: 6.5cm

   A purple convertible hot rod, Jolt looks like an old style racing car, with a token windshield and no roof to speak of. He sports blue flames on his hood, fading to white at the base (the front of the car). There's a blue block just behind the cockpit, which is meant to represent the cover of the retractable roof, but is really there because it's the robot feet. The seats are turquoise while the front suspension is grey and the headlights transparent. On either side of the tapered front are three exhaust pipes - which are transparent, like the windscreen and headlights. Aside from the blue and white flames (which don't quite look right - they should have settled on one colour), this dragster looks pretty good.

   Very low on finer details, but then this wouldn't be a very big vehicle. There's a steering wheel inside the cockpit and spokes on the chrome hubcaps, so the lack of detail is more a stylistic thing than laziness. From the front you can see more detail - there are moulded suspension springs and air intakes for the engine. At the back you'll notice a clear tailpipe - which is the handle of his sword.

   He'll roll along on his wheels, although there's not a lot of ground clearance - which is to be expected of a street rod. The point of the Laser Rods is light up parts, so the action in this mode is in the six exhausts sticking out the sides. There's a small turquoise button on the hood, which is very obvious since it's on the white part of the flames (you'd think hiding in the blue would be a better design choice), when pushed it activates internal LED which lights up exhausts. The LED is a fairly powerful red colour, impressive under artificial light and brilliant in a dark room. Since the LED is actually under his hood, half of his hood glows red when you activate this gimmick, which detracts from the exhausts somewhat. The LED can also be activated by pushing down on his hood, which will push the suspension down up as well as light the hood.

   It's an unusual style of vehicle, that's never been done as a Transformer, otherwise, which makes Jolt an interesting choice - even more so for a Decepticon. The gimmick doesn't quite work properly, but is still worthwhile. The bad choice of colours on his hood are Jolt's biggest problem in this mode - and what annoys me is that it would have been so easy to fix.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   Remove the sword from underneath, flip the rear out to form his legs. Swing the arms out from his sides, fold the front of the car down to form his chest. Push the seats on his back of to reveal his head and fold his cuffs down. Give Jolt his weapon. Lastly, you can detach a small black module from within his chest and attach it to the back of his fist if you like. This module houses the LED, and will light his sword in place of the engine now on his back. If you prefer, you can leave it stowed.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 11cm Width: 8cm

   Still mainly purple, although this is joined by some more grey and a lot more turquoise. His elbows, cuffs and groin are grey while his head, forearms and thighs are turquoise. The black tyres sit on his waist and knees, while his feet are the blue roofcover. Jolt has a transparent eyestrip, and a very effective lightpipe. His face is exceedingly simple, which fits in with the design of the toy really. The dual colour flames are now on his chest, while the transparent exhausts are on either side of his chest. This colour scheme works slightly better than that of the vehicle mode, since the flames are quite so dominant.

   The Laser Rods were amongst the first Transformers to attempt G.I. Joe level articulation. As with some other 1994 toys, Jolt represents the Transformers' first foray into the ball joints that became the standard during Beast Wars. To this end, he has a metal T in his groin and ball joint in his waist (with a rubber band inside), as well as hinged knees and elbows. His shoulders have both hinges (which lift out to the sides) and swivels. Rounding out his articulation, the head turns right around. For the time, this sort of poseability was a _big_ deal - keeping in mind the best we'd seen previously was the Actionmasters.

   Jolt's poseability is on par with the other Laser Rods but thanks to a very heavy chest and hollow feet he's not so stable. It's difficult to get any leg posing happening - if the feet aren't next to each other he tends to do the splits can collapse. The weight of his chest means he'll often slump forward - or just fall flat on his face. The hipjoints in mine have loosened with age, so now the only real poseability left is in the arms.

   The sword - which isn't so much a sword but a big-ass machete - lights up quite well, activated by the button now on his chest. Even with the light on, it lights up brilliantly, and the edge of the blade glows red. Or of course you can light up his chest, exhaust pipes and all. The wire can stick out if it's detached from his chest, so you'll have to make sure it's wrapped behind his forearm and not in front of it.

   It's a shame the poseability is limited so much, since Jolt has some really nice features, and should look really good posed. The cuffs are triple laser blasters (think Hot Rod), the front of the car on his chest looks really good, and the huge machete is cool.

   A promising robot mode that doesn't quite work, thanks mainly to weak hips. Had they been able to engineer heelspurs (or even heels), he'd be a lot better. Jolt looks badass when he's not face down with his legs open, so it's still a good robot mode - just not as good as it could have been.

VARIATIONS

   None that I'm aware of.

OVERALL

   A great looking robot mode, a cool vehicle mode with some paint problems and some flawed robot mode engineering. On the whole, Jolt looks the best as a robot of the four Laser Rod cars, but this is let down by some design problems. Despite the flaws, this is still a good toy, and I'd recommend him if you like the Laser Rods - 6.5/10

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