Transformers Movie (2007) Skyblast Review

in 2007, Action Figure Review, Autobot, Energon, Movie (2007), Target Exclusive

Transformers Live Action<br />
Movie

General Information:
Release Year: July 2007
Retailer: Target Exclusive
Price: $7.99
Accessories: Energon Spear, Energon Star
Difficulty Level: 2

Images:

Tech Specs:
A young aerial daredevil with a talent for painting complex designs in the sky using only his exhaust smoke, Skyblast is looked on with awe by Decepticon and Autobot alike. No flyer among either army is capable of the intricate maneuvers that are this robot's specialty. He is friends with few others, preferring to spend his time alone in the sky he loves. In addition to his incredible skill as a pilot, he wields a powerful electro-discharge cannon in combat that is capable of knocking other flyers out of the air with one shot.

Strength: 6  Intelligence:Speed:Endurance: 7
Rank: 4  Courage: 9  Fireblast: 8  Skill: 10


Skyblast was one of the Omnicons released for the Energon line, bringing back the basic price point of figures that was used up until Robots in Disguise but then abandoned for Mini-Con three packs in "Armada". Interestingly enough, while many of his fellow Omnicons have been given new decos over the last couple of years, Skyblast has escaped being reused in a mass release until now. I recommend reading my original review of the Energon figure to get a detailed look at the figure. This review will focus on changes made to the figure for this release.

Packaging:
The size of the card used in this wave of Target exclusives is the same as the first wave. These smaller cards were also used for the Real Gear Robots line. The figure itself is in vehicle mode on its side, with the weapons and Energon Star over it. On the bottom are the familiar graphics with beveled metal plate designs in red and Skyblast's name in the same font used for the movie logo. An "Only at Target" sticker is placed over the bubble. The back pictures the figure in both modes. Interestingly it looks like something might have happened to the figure used for the photography as the cockpit section that mounts on the back of Skyblast's head is actually upside down. The text notes that the "Gray" parts (which are really translucent brown) can form an "Ultimate Energon Weapon". Unlike wave one, this wave does not have any information to decode, so the graphic of Optimus Prime's head and the obscured text are no longer present. On the lower right hand corner are Skyblast's two cosells, Strongarm and Clocker.

Vehicle Mode:
When this sculpt was originally developed, it was meant to fit into the futuristic, scifi world of the Energon universe. However, the Target exclusive line of figures is intended to take place in the more "realistic" movie universe, and that puts Skyblast in a whole new context. Skyblast certainly has many elements of a classic jet such as long nosecone with a cockpit, swept back wings and angular control fins on the back along with two huge boosters in the rear. Still, it's somewhat triangular shape and the rather fierce looking cannons pointing forward definitely put a scifi spin on this vehicle, and in the context of the movie universe I picture this as an experimental jet form Skyblast scanned based on something the military was developing, but that's just my personal flight of fancy.

Unlike most of the Target exclusive military themed figures, Skyblast does not have any Sector 7 markings on him at all. The figure is cast in grey, black and translucent brown plastic parts. Beige, white and black paint are used to provide a deco pattern that is very different than Energon Skyblast's. This pattern is muach more like a camo with curved lines and edges overlapping some of the sculpted detail rather than following it. One example can be found on the wings, where the edges are white and curve back, going over the jagged line details etched into each wing. Some details do follow the sculpted patterns such as the edge around the cockpit being paitned white and the small gunports on the nosecone being left unpainted so the ports are easier to see. tiny dabs of gold can be found here and there such as on the inner edges of the wings, and they help give a little bit of dazzle in an otherwise very evenly colored figure. While some may see this deco as very dull, I rather like it. It fits the look one can imagine an advanced, military jet having.

The translucent parts have all been cast in translucent brown, a very light shade that fits in with the grey and beige colors of the figure. All the parts still fit on the figure just fine which is not surprising since this figure has not been reused extensively.

Robot Mode:
I have to say that it's a good thing Skyblast's basic sculpt and design is really strong, otherwise this figure would suffer a lot more than it already does. While the vehicle mode is full of subdued paint decos, at least they form some type of pattern that is visually interesting. In this form, a lot more of the black parts wind up showing including the arms, the thighs and the feet. A lot more flat grey shows as well, most notably the underside of the wings mounted on his arms. The problem with these parts is that none of them have deco on them. The black parts are just black and the wing parts look like they're really missing something since they have so much sculpted detail on them (including Autobot symbols). It just seems like a real shame to waste so much potential detail space and leave it blank.

On the other hand, it's not as if this mode lacks detail completely. The colors from the vehicle mode do carry over on the chest and lower legs. The robot head has beige deco for the crest and face with gold eyes. The deco on the chest/waist piece is the nicest, with beige covering the T shaped section of the chest and white on the upper edge. Black parts on the lower part offer a nice contrast to the lighter colors. The way the designs work out on the lower legs also looks great, but it's not enough to save the rest of the figure from looking rather drab.

The Energon weapons all combine together without a problem despite the tooling for them having been used many times already for exclusive runs.

Final Thoughts:
I am really fond of this sculpt, especially considering its origins as a Skyfire/Jetfire homage. I'm also very fond of the color deco used in the vehicle mode, but it really loses a lot in the robot mode. I think using some gold deco in the robot mode would have worked well, or maybe even some extra spray ops. However, that is sort of demanding a lot from a basic sized store exclusive. Overall, I'd say if you can still get the Energon version of this figure, go for that one instead. This is a good substitute and of course a must buy if you're a movie toy completist. Mildly recommended.