' Cliffbee.com: Transformer Toy Reviews: Mace Windu

Cliffbee.com: Mace Windu Toy Review

Toy Reviews
Individual Review




Name: Mace Windu
Series: Star Wars Transformers
Allegiance: Jedi Council
Function: Jedi Master
Alternate Mode: Jedi Starfighter

Thanks to Tiby for loaning me Mace Windu for this review



STARFIGHTER MODE
Height: 7cm Length: 17cm Width: 16cm

   A grey space fighter with extensive purple markings. This is the type of fighter we see Anakin and Obiwan Kenobi flying in the opening scene of Star Wars Episode III. For those unfamiliar, it's a twin hulled single-pilot jet with panels rising above and below the wingtips with a cockpit at the back, between the wings. The purple is prominent on the hulls and to a lesser extent the panels on the wingtips, which actually sports two slightly different shades of purple. There's silver on the cage of the cockpit, which has colourless windows. On the portside wing the top half of an R2 unit sticks out (similar to R2D2 but with purple instead of blue). The droid is fixed but still recognisably similar to the prototypical R2D2. The cockpit has a grey interior, rounding out a reasonably detailed and coherent colour scheme, which isn't especially inspiring but still works. I like the choice of purple, which is chosen to match Mace Windu's light sabre, and I like the rather violet shade chosen, which looks good and ensures that this heroic character avoids "Decepticon" purple. We never see Mace Windu piloting such a craft in the films, mind you.

   There are some nice details on this jet, such as the seat inside the cockpit - complete with headrest. There are legs underneath the hulls which are nicely sculpted, and they can fold away for flight. There are no rear legs as such, rather a bump underneath the cockpit, but it stands fairly well so I'm not complaining. There are silver missiletips sticking out of the wings near their bases, which are the hilts of the robot mode's lightsabres.

   The rounded canopy lifts up to reveal a convincing cockpit and a beige figure with brown skin (he's Afro-American, remember) which represents Mace Windu quite well. There are well concealed triggers on the front of the wings which fire the missiles. They're well designed - not hard to fire but hard to fire by accident. The light sabres don't make great missiles, but fit the colour scheme nicely in transparent purple. The launchers are well designed even if the projectiles don't travel very far. You can fold up the legs for a flight mode, as I've already mentioned.

   A decent starfighter, and this is probably the most visually appealing colour scheme on this mould, despite not featuring in the films. The minifigure works well enough and the level of detail at the high standard you'd expect from a Star Wars Transformer. This is easily the toy's better mode.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

   Fold away the wing plates and legs. Open the canopy, remove the mini Master Windu. Flip up the back of the cockpit to reveal the robot head, you can fold the seat down and place the mini figure inside again if you like. Slide the front of the cockpit in and close the cockpit. Fold the legs down from underneath, fold the wings down and underneath (taking the hulls with them). Extend the legs, rotate the waist, rotate the boots, flip up his feet. Fold the back of the cockpit down onto his back, pull the arms out from within the sides of the chest (cockpit), give him the light sabres and you're done.

ROBOT MODE
Height: 17.5cm Width: 9cm

   A mainly grey robot with some purple here and there, a dark grey on the boots and some white paint applications on his shoulders and forearms. The silver and transparent canopy forms the lower torso. The distinctly robotic head is brown, but doesn't really look much like Samuel L Jackson's, and I'm not sure a cyborg head works in brown plastic. The head is resculpted, and while the basic idea of the resculpt is right, it just feels awkward. The brown and purple don't work so well together, either, although the head was always going to be brown. The colours do look better than those on either Anakin or Obiwan, mind you - thanks largely to the purple.

   The wings are very bad kibble, dominating from the back and pulling this thing over. It's hard to find a pose where it doesn't want to fall backwards. Terrorcon Blot & Autobus Prime point out that the wings can actually clip in - while this does keep them stable, it doesn't help the figure's stability much. The potbelly shaped cockpit doesn't look so good.

   This robot mode has good articulation but poor poseability, since the poses usually just fall over backwards. The head rotates on a restricted ball joint. The waist also rotates for transformation, which fails to translate here since the canopy will open when you rotate the waist. The shoulders swing and lift out to the sides while his elbows hinge inwards and the wrists are ball joints. The hips swing and lift out to the sides while the knees and ankles are hinged and there are rotators just above the knees. The heelspurs are not very big for a toy with so much backpack, and he really needed something better here. In theory you can strike some cool light sabre wielding poses, making use of nice purple light sabres, in reality you'll find the pose and then spend 5 minutes trying to find a way to keep it upright.

   A robot mode that's clearly second fiddle to the vehicle mode. The arms are good, the legs could have been good if not for the useless heelspurs and the transparent purple light sabres do look cool. The head has a sculpt which is too complex for its own good and the kibble on his back is flat out ruinous here. I can't see too much scope to improve the torso, but the lack of heelspurs really hurt. A bad robot mode, no matter what colour it wears.

VARIATIONS

   None that I'm aware of, although this is a repaint of Anakin Skywalker & Obiwan Kenobi. Later repaints of the same mould are Mace Windu and Darth Vader (which represents the same character as Anakin).

OVERALL

   Well, it's a decent starfighter mode, if not an especially exciting one, with some good details such as the R2 Droid and the clever triggers on the launchers. The transformation is lazy, with the wings folding back as huge pieces of kibble while the limbs fold out of storage. The robot mode is disappointing despite good articulation. It's unstable with wings that just float there looking awkward, and the head doesn't work too well. The mould isn't good enough for this third repaint, which doesn't really offer significant improvement to the mould's problems - 4/10

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