Alternate Mode: Tyrannosaurus rex
Thanks to Goktimus Prime for loaning me Grimlock for this review
Height: 13cm Length: 21.5cm Width: 10.5cm
A grey T-Rex with gold plastic on his forelimbs, the tip of his tail and the claws on his hindlegs, Grimlock also sports gold painted highlights here and there, notable around his neck. There are some deep red painted details as well, There's some black plastic on the tail and knees while his eyes are transparent blue with an effective lightpipe. There's a silver Autobot logo stamped on the left hip, rounding out a good colour scheme. The tribute to the G1 character is quite obvious and well done.
Perhaps more than most Animated toys, Grimlock has cartoon proportions. With a giant lower jaw, jagged teeth, huge hips and a swollen central body, Grimlock's bodyshape fits right into the cartoony nature of Animated. I don't like the style, but I can't fault the execution here. He's designed to stand with his tail as a balance, rather than dragging, unlike the original Grimlock, so despite the odd shape there is a focus on anatomical correctness. There are gaps on top and underneath the body, which break things up more than I'd like.
Play value here is limited for a voyager. The lower jaw opens when you press a button on the back of his neck - and snaps shut again thanks to a spring inside. The forelimbs are fixed while the hips are restricted ball joints and the knees and ankles are hinged. His sword just sits to the side and there are no gimmicks here other than the snapping jaw. He can sort of hold the sword in his mouth, but it's more of a hack than by design.
A good beast mode as Animated goes - although many of the beast modes in this line are poor. The shape is odd, so he's not realistic despite the tail being used for balance, but the tribute is well executed and the colour scheme works. I'm not impressed with the gaps on the body nor the lack of play value, but Grimlock's beast mode still decent nonetheless.
TRANSFORMATION TO ROBOT MODE
Split the tail, fold the halves out to the sides. Unclip his back, fold out the rear half to form robot boots, fold the back in to form heelspurs, clip the tail halves onto his boots. Straighten the legs and stand him up. Fold back the beast head and neck, open the neck panels, fold away the forelimbs. Slide up the gold chest, clip the backpack into his back. Push the black "elbow" sections into his upper arms, rotate the forearms, give Grimlock his sword and you're done.
Height: 19cm Width: 10.5cm
Again based on grey, Grimlock has a gold chest, gold on his feet and fingers as well as some other highlights. His elbows, head and thighs are black while his waist and kneecaps are a dark red (almost brown). His eyestrip is transparent blue with an excellent lightpipe, and another serrated lower jaw to match that on the beats mode. There's a transparent panel on his chest which mimics that of the original, and it sports a stamped silver Autobot logo. While the colour scheme is fairly minimal compared to the traditional Grimlock layout, the tribute is strong and the colours work quite well here. I love the lightpipe.
The bodyshape isn't quite as unusual as in beast mode, but his proportions are still quite unusual. The serrated teeth on his head is an interest idea which contributes to Grimlock's unusual look. The arms are very long and look really awkward - his hands reach down to the middle of his boots. The arms sit on distinct stalks which stick out of his wide chest. The end result is a big chest, long arms and a very strange shape. Unlike some Animated toys, Grimlock's not really balance. On the plus side, the tail halves clip into the boots nicely and they do look good, and aside from the unusual jaw, the head is classic Grimlock. There's even backpack kibble that resembles the wings of the original - although this could be seen as good or bad.
Play value is decent, with a lot of poseability and an interesting weapon. His head and waist turn - the latter through 360°, while the hips and shoulders are ball jointed. The shoulders are a little limited by those stalks - he can lift his arms up around 45° to the side. The elbows are hinged and his wrists rotate while the knees are hinged with rotators _below_ them. Grimlock has nice big heelspurs which anchor a wide range of action poses. The arms look odd in many poses, but the joints are strong enough to support his heavy weapon.
The weapon is a big, transparent orange, flaming sword - and it's very much flaming, with an intricate sculpt. The orange fades to black at the hilt thanks to a paint wash, and there's some gold at the hilt as well. There's a button inside the handle, that activates when you plug the sword into his right hand, causing five flame-like protrusions to pop out. It's pretty good as swords go, impressive and very much considered.
A decent robot mode with good poseability, an interesting weapon and an excellent tribute. I do wish the proportions weren't so strange mind you - even by Animate standards Grimlock is awkward, but at least they got the tribute right, giving Grimlock good display value. The simplified details manage to not interfere with the tribute, which impresses me.
None that I'm aware of.
Two decent modes, a strong tribute in both and a well laid out colour scheme make Grimlock a good toy. Having said that, both modes have unusual proportions - Grimlock is more stylised than most Animated toys, so if you don't like the stylistic feel of Animated toys you're unlikely to appreciate Grimlock. The sword is interesting and the play value is strong, so if you like the series, or feel the need to grab the toy for the character, Grimlock has something offer - 7/10