Series: Generation 1
Function: Chemical Engineer
Alternate Mode: Scorpion
Height: 5.5cm Length: 11cm Width: 6.5cm
Pincher's exact dimensions will vary depending on how you pose his tail and claws, but since there's no actual "default" position for the tail I'm going with rough numbers. Anyway, he's a blue, grey and red robotic scorpion - basically he has red legs, a grey tail and grey claws and a blue body.
The head is part of the thorax piece and has mouthparts and tiny little eyes, which are easy to miss, but add something to the realism of this scorpion. Ok, so he's about as realistic as you'd expect a robotic scorpion to be, but he's clearly a scorpion, and the eyes cement that, which is more than can be said for a lot of the previous year's Pretenders with rather ill-defined alt modes.
So he's clearly a scorpion, and he has eyes and mouthparts, but sadly they've not painted the eyes at all. In fact, aside from the rear section of the thorax being painted a terracotta colour, there's no paint on this scorpion at all. I suspect the terracotta is meant to match the red plastic of his legs, but it's too matte and too light. The overall effect of this combination of colours is okay, although it's a little bland. Adding the handgun on top helps, since it's blue and hides some of that dull terracotta paint.
My favourite aspect of Pincher's animal mode is the jointing. He has "shoulders" that rotate as well as two joints along the length of each claw, giving his claws very good movement for such a small G1 toy. The tail has a single hinge at it's base, but he can't sting anything except his terracotta back, since the stinger's just part of the tailpiece. I suppose a joint here is probably hoping for a bit much from the toy, but it have been nice. It's worth mentioning that there's a distinct, conical, stinger on his tail. Lastly, the legs have some wiggle in them, since they're made of soft plastic.
While it's quite simple, this is a pretty good scorpion for the size. The poseability is great, but I wish they'd painted the eyes.
TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE
Detach the backpack (attach it to the back of the Pretender Shell if you're worried about losing it). Fold the robot legs out, stand him up and swing down his arms. Give him his handgun.
Height: 7cm Width: 4cm
The red disappears, leaving Pincher's robot mode grey and blue. The grey dominates, basically he's grey above the knees and blue below. He does have a white painted face, complete with eyes and a mouthplate, as well as blue antennae on his head (the scorpion mouthparts). There are also silver rivets that stand out on the each shoulder. This mode has the better colour scheme, mainly due to the loss of the terracotta.
The poseability is good for his size, thanks to the arm joints, which are the same ones that did so much for his scorpion mode. His shoulders rotate and lift out to the sides, and the elbows swing side to side. The knees bend, although this is really just part of the transformation.
This mode is very well proportioned - his thighs _look_ like comic/cartoon robot thighs and his waist is the right size. He has feet and elbowpads and the screw casings on his shoulders are moulded to look like shoulder cannons or something similar.
This is a good robot mode for it's size. The colours work quite well and the mould has little things going for it like the face, the waist and the pseudo-shoulder cannons.
The Pretender Shell
Height: 14cm Width: 8.5cm
Like a lot of Autobot Pretenders, he's a human in an armour suit. He's white with ginger hair, but if he's wearing his helmet, he's just a guy in a costume, really. That costume is largely yellow, with some green bits and long grey gloves. There's also some grey on the back, on his backpack, which is actually really small for a Small Pretender - although adding the scorpion leg/tail assembly bulks it up a fair bit. His left shoulder has a twin-barrelled cannon of some sort, with terracotta barrel and what I presume is a sight of some sort sticking up on his shoulder - it's a yellow block, basically.
There's not much play value here. The arms swivel at the shoulders, you can attach the backpack, which doesn't add or detract any, and attach the large handgun. Still, I suppose the point of the shell is to hide the robot, and it serves it's purpose.
This shell is probably Pincher's weakest aspect. There's nothing inherently bad about it, but there's nothing really unique or great about it, either.
None I'm aware of.
The robot itself is pretty good for what it is, with good colours, a good scorpion mode and good poseability for the size. The Pretender shell is dull, but serves it's purpose. Whether or not you decide to get Pincher really depends on how much you like Pretenders. You could do a lot worse than Pincher in the Pretender line, and I'll admit this a toy I enjoy, despite not really being a huge fan of Pretenders - 6.5/10