Transformers Movie (2007) Hardtop Review

in 2007, Action Figure Review, Cybertron, Decepticon, Movie (2007), Target Exclusive

Transformers Live Action Movie

General Information:
Release Year: June 2007
Retailer: Target Exclusive
Price: $6.99
Accessories: Missile x 1, Missile launcher, Scope, Exhaust pipes x 2, Energon Star
Difficulty Level: 2


Tech Specs:
As an elite tracker and spy for the DECEPTICONS, HARDTOP has come into conflict again and again with AUTOBOT spy BUMBLEBEE. What began as a professional rivalry defined by the limits of their allegiances on opposite sides of a war became a full-fledged vendetta over the years. The two robots have played a punishing game of cat and mouse across the breadth of the galaxy; it is a little known fact that it was a shot fired by HARDTOP that took away his AUTOBOT enemy's ability to speak without pain.

Strength: 5  Intelligence:Speed:Endurance: 7
Rank: 4  Courage: 4  Firepower: 6  Skill: 7

It is interesting to note that while Hardtop's tech specs put the responsibility for Bumblebee's speech problem on Hardtop, the prequel comic book clearly shows this was done by Megatron.

In an effort to offer an expanded set of figures for retailer exclusives Hasbro has released a wave of Scout Class Transformers as Target exclusives
coinciding with the release of the Transformers Movie figures. One of these figures is Hardtop, a redeco of Cybertron Hardtop. Check out his review for details on this figure. This will cover the changes made to the figure for this release.

Hardtop is packaged on a card matching the design and size of those used to package the "Real Gear Robots". It is a small card with a wrap around blister around the figure itself. Hardtop is packaged in vehicle mode and an "Only at Target" sticker is stuck onto the bubble. The back pictures Hardtop in robot and vehicle form. Indicating his weapon, it lists "Cyber Planet Key flips out super barrel" so there was no real attempt to change the name of the device to fit the movie universe.

Each of these Target exclusive figures features a "Robovision" decoder. When you use the decoder on the Optimus Prime face in the back, a text code is revealed that you enter at the official Target Transformers site to gain access to information and images. In this case Hardtop's code is "Bullseye" and entering that code gives you this screen first. Pressing the download button then gives you this PDF file featuring the bios, images and color charts of the three Scout Class Target exclusive figures.

Vehicle Mode:
In a key sequence in the Transformers Movie, Sector 7 troops escort Bumblebee to Mission City using dune buggies with weapon mounts on top. It seems the designers had that vehicle in mind when they were thinking of a color scheme for Hardtop. It is worth noting that there is a figure based on that dune buggy coming out later for the movie line's latter half. For now however, we have a substitute.

Hardtop is primarily cast in grey, green and black plastic. The grey makes up most of this form, with the black used for the tires and the step that leads into the driver's seat. The olive green plastic is only seen in small parts here, most notably on the struts that connect the vehicle to the rear wheels. Silver, black and yellow paint are used for details. The lights on the front and along the top of the vehicle are painted silver. The yellow and black are used for hazard stripes along the rear of the vehicle, and the vent line details near them are painted silver. On the left and right sides of the vehicle (on the back sections) you'll find the the letter and number "S7" in black along with the Sector 7 symbol (solidifying its tie to the movie).

The weapon and Cyber Planet Key are cast in black plastic. Green, silver and yellow paint are used to fill in details such as the hexagon on the weapon's artillery storage section. Rather than including the Earth Planet Key, the Decepticon Key is included instead. While the Decepticon symbol is still clearly sculpted into the piece (you can see it from the back) the front is painted green on the perimeter with the middle section remaining black. Silver paint is used for the letter and number "S7" with the Sector 7 cube symbol below it.

Overall this is a nice looking color scheme. It jives with the look of the dune buggies seen in the film and the olive green adds a bit of a military touch to the vehicle. The darker colors also give it a more "real world" look. Fortunately the silver is used sparingly so it does not make it too loud.

The Cyber Key gimmick still works just fine, which is good to see after the sculpt has been used twice already.

Robot Mode:
In robot mode you can see a lot more olive green plastic, most notably on the head, chest and feet. Grey plastic is used for the arms and lower body. Black is used on the waist and thighs. A majority of the paint details on the legs can already be seen in vehicle mode. Newly revealed painted details include the chest, painted silver and yellow and the head which has a silver face and yellow eyes. It is a simple color scheme, but it works to blend into the "real world" of the movie line.

I did notice that while Hardtop's joints are all still tight, his right hand's fist does not grip his weapon as tightly as the two previous releases of this sculpt.

Final Thoughts:
I think there's a wonderful irony in taking a Decepticon and making him a sort of "undercover" Sector 7 vehicle. It is a bit of a stretch for me to recommend this figure since it was released twice already. However, if you do want to make your movie line complete and/or you love redecos, then this is definitely for you. It's not a bad figure by any means, and out of all the color schemes this is perhaps my favorite.