Cliffbee.com: ROTF Mixmaster Toy Review

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Individual Review




Name: Mixmaster
Series: Movie Tie-ins
Allegiance: Decepticon
Alternate Mode: Cement Mixer



CEMENT MIXER MODE
Height: 8cm Length: 17.5cm Width: 6.5cm

   A charcoal cement mixer with a light brown tray at the rear supporting a charcoal drum with silver bands and large purple Decepticon logos on either side. The front grille and bumper, side mirrors, smokestacks and fuel tanks are all a neutral light grey. There are red and white "danger" stripes on the fueltank and above the rear tyres while the windows and headlights are transparent purple. There's a small silver Decepticon logo on the hood which is rather redundant with the giant logos on his drum. The colour scheme is understated yet suitably Decepticon, and quite realistic - aside from the giant symbols on the drum, obviously.

   This is a very detailed truck mode for a voyager - Mixmaster is pretty much at the level of a Binaltech toy. There are rivets on the front bumper, holes on the smokestacks, side mirrors on loops (as you see on some trucks) and machinery in front of the drum. At the back he has a chute and a ladder. There's very little robot kibble here - the knees are visible underneath the front bumper and the folded up robot feet are visible behind the cabin. By the way, he's a longnose with six black tyres - two at the front and four at the back. The wheels are painted silver and feature moulded rivets while in front of the rear wheels are sculpted "feet".

   There's minimal play value here. The wheels all roll, and he rolls true although the tread slows Mixmaster down fairly quickly. The drum is fixed, since it unfolds as part of the transformation. To be fair, few Transformer cement mixers have actually managed a rotating drum (G1 Mixmaster is the only one which springs to mind). The smokestacks don't clip onto the cabin - they float on ball joints, so I guess you can pose them as weapons of sorts - which is the only real complaint I have about this truck mode.

   An excellent cement mixer mode with an amazing level of detail, funky Decepticon logos on the drum and a good colour scheme. The play value is minimal, but I'm happy with the trade off between play value and display value here. The loose smokestacks are the only real knock on this truck mode.

TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE

  

A very complex unfolding, which I'm not going to go through in detail. The drum splits and unfolds as his arms, the cab ends up as a backpack (well, a butt pack) while the legs unfold from underneath the cab. The head is stowed between the legs. Despite this shellforming, there are still truck elements on his robot mode, which I'll come back to shortly.
ROBOT MODE
Height: 18cm Width: 18cm

   A light grey robot with dark grey in various connections such as his ankles and shoulderstruts, Mixmaster has black thighs and black eyes while there are some copper painted elements on his thighs and torso. The eyes look like they should have a lightpipe, but they don't. The painted detail is actually fairly sparse in this mode but the limbs are very detailed along with his facial sculpt - and this is all easy to see on the light grey plastic. There is no Decepticon logo visible here. The colour scheme is very plain, but this allows the bodyshape and detailing to dominate, something I suspect the designer was aiming for.

   Mixmaster has wide shoulders and long, curved arms - the width above is approximate, since he doesn't really have a default "arms by his sides" position. The hips are high set and the legs curve forwards, making Mixmaster all about his curved limbs. There's a lot of detail on the too, as I mentioned, which serves to highlights the limbs even more. His feet are quite big, and have panels hanging off the outsides (the truck's roof). There are black shell pieces hanging off the upper arms and forearms, and they're clearly the drum. Perhaps the only downright _intrusive_ kibble here is the rear wheels which hang back somewhat awkwardly from his elbows. The drum shell hugs the arms themselves quite closely, but the wheelbays do not. I mentioned the truck elements visible before, and aside from the doors there are tyres inside his thighs, the smokestacks are on either side of his head, pointing backwards while outside these are the fuel tanks.

   Mixmaster's articulation is impressive. There are seven joints along the length of either arm. Yes, that's right, seven - three rotators and four hinges, which give the arms room to transform as well as giving him room to do things like scratch his backside, or adjust the smokestack on the other side of his head. The general tendency is for the arms to curve inwards, as mentioned, but there is enough poseability for the arms to strike pretty much any pose - they can even touch the ground. Instead of true hands, Mixmaster has claws, with two prongs on the outside and one inside, which can open and close. The head is on a ball joint while the hips swing and lift out to the side, the knees are hinged with rotators in his thighs and his ankles are hinged. The heelspurs are big enough to deal with a range of poses.

   Mixmaster has a third mode, which is essentially the robot mode folded up so that a mid grey missile launcher on his back sticks out to fire. It's a mess, not a weapons emplacement. So the missile launcher is most useful in robot mode as a ground--to-air missile, since the launcher points the transparent purple up and slightly back. You can unclip the back slightly, allowing the launcher to swing up and forward, although this will also swing the arms back and cause the cab shell to pop off and drag on the table. While the arms are poseable enough to overcome this, the cab can't clip on anywhere else, so I'd recommend this for play only, not display. Mixmaster gets a missile launcher - sort of - and a really long reach for his pointed claws. So he's great in hand to hand combat with this reach.

   An unusual robot mode with distinct proportions, Mixmaster is all about limbs. I quite like the poseable arms and giant claws, but that's a taste thing - if you can't deal with his odd shape you'll hate this robot mode. The sculpt and level of articulation _are_ impressive but the kibble on his arms and ...skidplate... is a little annoying and the missile launchers really needed a more effective way to fire, since the third mode is barely worth mentioning.

VARIATIONS

   None that I'm aware of.

OVERALL

   A good toy with an amazing vehicle mode and a very solid robot mode, Mixmaster has an unusual robot mode which wont suit everyone, but the poseability is impressive. The third mode is a waste of time, but the transformation is involved. There are some shellformer aspects to the transformation, but it's still satisfying. If you can deal with the unusual bodyshape, I'd definitely recommend Mixmaster - 9/10

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