Beast Wars Transformers Icebird Toy Review

in 2000, Action Figure Review, Beast Machines, Beast Wars, Deluxe, Mutants, Mutants

Beast Wars Transformers


The evil Megatron has developed an experimental anti-conversion virus with which he plans to win the Beast Wars! This toxin infects its host and prevents the ability to change into Bear Mode - eventually causing permanent shutdown. But something went wrong...when unleashed on several Fuzors, it caused a reconfiguration of their conversion abilities, trapping their Bear Modes inside two different Owl Modes. Now, bewildered by new and potent extrasensory powers plus the ability to change into two ferocious animals, these Transformers join together to form a renegade band of warriors. This is...Mutant Beast Wars!

Name: Icebird
Function: Mutant Beast Commander
Motto: "He who fights with monsters should take care lest he become a monster."

Sage-like leader of the mutants. Very wise and powerful. Possesses colossal size and strength in bear mode - silent aerial abilities in owl mode. Resentful of his lost ability to convert to Bear Mode. Believes mission is to nullify technology completely and evolve into a purely organic existence. Does not fight with the Maximals, but believes they are a necessary component of the organic evolution. Can communicate telepathically, become invisible, read minds and shut down machinery at will. Views Optimus Primal's heroics with forgiving tolerance. Greatly feared by Megatron.

Strength: 8.4 Intelligence: 8.9 Speed: 7.9 Endurance: 7.5
Rank: 10.0 Courage: 9.0 Firepower: 8.9 Skill: 9.0

Images:

Icebird is the leader of the group of "Mutant" Beast Wars toys to be released in the 2000 line. This concept is explained above, but adds a nice link between the Beast Wars and Beast Machines toy universes. Beast Machines involves Megatron beginning his new assault on the Transformers by using a anti-transformation virus, and the virus that affects the Mutant Beast Wars appears to be a predecessor to that virus.

Polar Bear Mode:
In polar bear mode, Icebird is mostly an off white color. His sides are a dull metallic grey, which is a bit of a disadvantage since it stands out so much against the white. It would have been better to make this side of the side panels white and leave the metallic grey on the other side for the owl mode. The upper part of his chest has some yellow and dark green patterns on them which are parts that will carry over to the owl mode. His claws and bear eyes are bright red and his teeth are a metallic blue grey. If you open up the mouth, he has a tongue in there painted pink, a nice touch of detail.

Icebird is much more accurate to a genuine polar bear than his predecessor, Polar Claw. However, a good deal of license was taken with the design. First, the proportions are a off for his legs. Polar bear front paws and legs are not generally that much larger than the rear ones, but here the difference is enormous. Also, polar bears do have claws, but now huge bright red ones. Keeping in mind that this is a "Mutant" however helps explain the discrepencies.

In polar bear mode, Icebird has thirteen points of articulation. This includes his head, mouth and tail. On his upper right forearm you will see the Mutator symbol in silver chrome. You can lift that section to reveal mechanical detailing on the inside. Fold down the bear head and lift up his back panel to reveal a robot head representing the "trapped soul" of the robot inside. Note: Both the robot head and the mechanical detailing under the arm panel are dull metallic grey here, but the prototype at Toy Fair had red coloring for these parts instead. However, I believe that was only for the prototype.

Transformation to Owl mode:
Begin Icebird's transformation by folding out the sides of the bear to reveal the owl wings. Fold the panels out to completely expand the wings. Next, straighten out the bear forearms and rotate half of the claws around to form the owl feet. Now fold out the halves of the bear body. Open up the panel on the back of the bear and fold out the rear owl feathers while folding in the bear head. Flip out the rear side feathers. Rotate the rear bear feet around and straighten out the rear legs so the feet point down. Close up the halves of the main body. Fold down the polar bear tail on top of the owl head and Icebird is now in owl mode.

Owl mode:
In owl mode, Icebird retains the color scheme from the polar bear mode. Now however, more dull metallic grey shows via his wings and owl face. Dark metallic green details are used on the wings to make the feathers more distinctive. In this mode, Icebird has fifteen points of articulation. A mechanism is built into his owl head which allows one to make his beak move by pressing down on the polar bear tail on the top of his head. The transformation instructions were not well detailed for this section, but it does function.

Overall, Icebird is a very cool toy and combines two great animals. A

Additional Notes (June 2012):
The "Mutants" are not the most loved part of "Transformers" lore. Most people either don't like them or outright ignore them. My understanding (years after the fact) is that these figures were originally meant to be part of the "Animorphs" toy line, but when that line was cancelled they were quickly moved over to the "Transformers" toy line with some retooling (robot heads in place of human heads etc.). I'm glad they did make it as they're really interesting. Icebird works very well since both his Owl Modes feature colors that can work for both critters (as opposed to a green wolverine). He remains one of my favorite characters to this day partly due to his two modes and his tech specs. This is one powerful Transformer!