"Generations" Studio Series Voyager Class Optimus Prime (Bumblebee Movie) Toy Review

in 2019, Action Figure Review, Autobot, Generations, Studio Series

Generations

Studio Series

General Information:
Release Date: February 2019
Price Point: $29.99 (Varies by retailer)
Retailer: General Release (Toys R Us, K-Mart, Target etc.)
Accessories: Rifle

Optimus Prime

Official images and text in italics below from Amazon.com:

  • STUDIO SERIES VOYAGER CLASS – Voyager Class figures are 6.5-inch collectible action figures inspired by iconic movie scenes and designed with specs and details to reflect the Transformers movie universe.
  • 6.5-INCH SCALE OPTIMUS PRIME – Figure features vivid, movie-inspired deco and detailed hand blasters inspired by the film. The figure is highly articulated for posability.
  • BIG SCREEN INSPIRED - Figure scale reflects the character’s size in the world of Transformers: Bumblebee. Figure and packaging are inspired by the iconic San Francisco Bridge scene.
  • 2 ICONIC MODES – Figure features classic conversion between robot and truck modes in 35 steps. Perfect for fans looking for a more advanced converting figure. For kids and adults ages 8 and up.
  • "REMOVABLE BACKDROP - Removable backdrop displays Optimus Prime figure in San Francisco Bridge scene. Fans can use the backdrop and pose their figures in the scene with their own style. "

"Reach past the big screen and build the ultimate Transformers collection with Studio Series figures (each sold separately), inspired by iconic movie scenes and designed with specs and details to reflect the Transformers movie universe.

San Francisco Bridge
The iconic art deco suspension bridge spans 4,200ft and is open to car, bike, giant converting robot, and foot traffic. This Studio Series 38 Voyager Class Transformers: Bumblebee Optimus Prime figure converts from robot to truck mode in 35 steps. Remove backdrop to showcase Optimus Prime in the San Francisco Bridge scene. Figure features vivid, movie-inspired deco and a detailed blaster accessory. Transformers and all related characters are trademarks of Hasbro.

The "Bumblebee" Movie featured one of the most memorable Transformers sequences ever shown in theaters: a battle on Cybertron between the Autobots and Decepticons featuring a who's who of classic characters! Unlike the previous live action films, these characters all featured G1-inspired designs giving fans of the franchise a nostalgic trip. One of the characters heavily featured in this scene is Optimus Prime, looking more like his G1 counterpart than the CG model used in the first five live action Transformers films. This design is a fan favorite, and makes for a perfect Studio Series release. You can check out a clip of Optimus in action from the "Bumblebee" Movie "Bee Vision" extra:

Packaging:
The Voyager Class Studio Series figures are packaged in boxes similar in size to the boxes used for "The Last Knight". The boxes are vertical rectangles with a large window in the front. Instead of the lighter colors of "The Last Knight" boxes, this box takes a more "Generations" style approach, using a black background and a vertical "Transformers" logo to the right. Above that is the "Generations" logo. Reflecting the new, unified approach to the Transformers toy line both Hasbro and Takara Tomy's logos appear on the front of the packaging. Towards the lower part of the box is the logo for the specific film the character comes from (in this case it is the logo for the "Bumblebee" film. To the left is new package art with blue borders. The packaging also has package art on the side and a large collector number designated to each figure. In Optimus' case his number is 38. The idea is that you can line up all these figures on a shelf to show off the collection numbers. It's a neat idea and has kept me from tossing out the box so far.

The back of the packaging shows renders of Optimus Prime in both modes along with the logo for the "Bumblebee" film. The box also describes the transformation as having thirty five steps. Towards the bottom it shows you how you can take the cardboard insert from the inside of the packaging and use it as a display base and background for the figure. In Optimus Prime's case, he comes with a background featuring the Golden Gate bridge from the ending of the film.

Accessory:
Optimus Prime includes a rifle. The design takes Optimus Prime's G1 weapon as the starting point, but adds on additional details. Like the G1 rifle it has a raised section on the back that angles forward leading to a long barrel. However, this weapon has an extra extension sticking out at the bottom of the barrel and there is an ammo clip style piece in front of the handle. This is how the weapon looked on screen and I like seeing the blend of live action movie and G1 elements combined in this weapon.

The rifle features a port at the end of the barrel that you can fit a "Siege" Blast Effect into. You sort of have to squeeze it in, so it is unlikely this was intentional, but it works! Interestingly, the rifle has a 5mm peg on the bottom and on the sides. This allows you to attach additional weaponry on the sides, something that was not featured in the film.

Robot Mode:
Optimus Prime's robot form borrows aesthetics from both the G1 and "Bayverse" eras. The G1 design elements are not just the classic ones like the windows on the chest and smokestacks on the arms but also several armor panels covering parts like the shoulders, forearms, thighs and legs that are more flat than the ones used on previous live action movie versions of this character. For the most part, the silhouette of this figure comes right out of G1, making an instant nostalgic and emotional connection to the 80's.

This figure is not all about G1 however. The level of detail on the figure is outstanding. From extra greebles on the head to a series of mechanical details on the mid-body (some resembling pistons and engine parts) all the way down to minute detailing on the vent panels on his lower legs every inch of this figure is full of eye candy. This is where the "Bayverse" aesthetic comes in, but having parts covered up with angled armor panels helps balance out the new and old aesthetics.

Optimus is cast in red, blue, dark grey, black and translucent blue plastic. The red is concentrated on the top half of the body. Blue is used on the head and lower legs. The black and grey are distributed throughout the rest of the body. The grey is not really a flat color. It has a metallic look to it, but it is not exactly a gunmetal grey. Paint applications are done in silver, black, blue and red. On the hips there are gold and black lines, a callback to yellow details on G1 Optimus Prime's waist. The deco on this figure is absolutely gorgeous. Combined with the sculpt, this figure looks like it jumped off the big screen onto my desk!

There are twenty four points of articulation on this figure. This includes six on each arm and five on each leg. Almost all the joints on my copy of this figure are nice and tight. The one exception is the left side hip joint, which is loose enough that you can shake the figure and the leg swings in and out. That said, I had no issues posing the figure or having it stand up straight. Each fist has a 5mm port in it, and there are two 5mm ports on the back for weapon storage. That said, the ports on the back are not particularly deep, so not all weapons will hold there tightly.

Transformation to Vehicle Mode:

  1. Straighten out the arms and legs.
  2. Detach the weapon if attached and set it aside for now.
  3. Swing the piece above the wheels down (this can be up or down in robot mode, it does not really interfere with anything).
  4. Lift the arms up to the sides.
  5. Swing the chest panels open.
  6. Swing the head forward.
  7. Swing the back panel down.
  8. Swing the panels on the back and the wheels under them to the sides.
  9. Rotate the top section (the one with the head, chest and arms) around.
  10. Under each chest panel, swing out the small panel on the lower part.
  11. Swing the chest panels in.
  12. Push down the panel that was behind the head.
  13. Swing the head and the hinged pieces up against the back of the cab.
  14. Swing the arms down and swing the forearms up.
  15. Unfold all the panels on the forearms.
  16. Swing the arms back.
  17. Swing the forearms forward.
  18. Connect the panels on the forearms to the sides of the chest panels.
  19. Swing the panels that were on top of the shoulders forward.
  20. Swing the panels from the sides (over the front wheels) up.
  21. Push the back panel in, forming the grille.
  22. Swing the panels that form the lower legs in robot mode up.
  23. Collapse the various gunmetal grey panels.
  24. Swing the leg panels forward, against the back of the cab section.
  25. Swing the cylinders on the robot thighs out to the sides.
  26. Swing the gunmetal grey panels from the back of the lower legs forward.
  27. Push the heel pieces down.
  28. Rotate the feet to the side.
  29. Swing out the trailer hitch piece from under the right foot.
  30. Swing each foot down and up, filling in part of the gap between the rear tires.

Vehicle Mode:
"Studio Series" has worked hard to license vehicles as often as they can, but sometimes they are unable to do so and instead create a vehicle mode that is similar to what was seen on screen but with just enough changes to avoid licensing issues. That is what Hasbro wound up doing with this figure.

Like the on-screen Freightliner Truck seen in the film, this truck has a flat front end (unlike most "longnose" trucks seen nowadays). The result is the cabin section looking like a big box. Two smokestacks are on the back and there are three wheels on each side with a cylinder between the front and rear wheels. Some of the smaller details carry over from the on-screen truck as well. These include a large grille in front, rectangular sideview mirrors on the sides and even panels sculpted into the sides.

All that said, there are plenty of differences between the truck used in the "Bumblebee" Movie and this figure. The windshield windows have covers over the top edge while the on-screen truck did not. Also, the top edge of the truck is missing the row of lights found on the on-screen truck. On top of all that, the smokestacks are curved at the end instead of being straight. Sure this takes away from the screen-accuracy, but the truck mode is "close enough" to me.

This mode mostly divides up the red and blue sections. The red is mostly in the front, the blue is towards the back with gunmetal grey parts in between. Silver is used to paint the red section including the iconic striped sections on the sides. Silver is also used on the sides of the wheels, which looks great.

You can attach the weapon to the trailer hitch, but that's about it in terms of interacting with weaponry. Given that Optimus only appears briefly in the film to begin with, this is hardly a huge deal.

Final Thoughts:
I was excited for this figure before I even had it in hand and it has not let me down. The robot mode looks fantastic and it has a good range of articulation. The vehicle mode may not be screen-accurate, but it looks great. Highly recommended!

Pros:

  • Beautiful sculpt that is screen-accurate in robot mode.
  • Good deco with some beautiful color plastic choices.
  • Good articulation.
  • Intuitive transformation.

Cons:

  • Vehicle mode is not screen-accurate.
  • Back 5mm ports are not as secure as I would normally like.