Revenge of the Fallen Sideswipe Toy Review

in 2009, Action Figure Review, Autobot, Generation One, Revenge of the Fallen

Revenge of the Fallen

General Information:
Release Date: May 2009
Price Point: $11.99 (varies depending on retailer)
Retailer: General (Toys R Us, Target, Wal-Mart etc.)
Accessories: None

Images:

Text from Hasbrotoyshop.com:
SIDESWIPE was built to fight. He is sleek, fast, and single-minded in battle, focusing on his enemy with absolute attention. His blades are a shining blur in the air as he leaps through the air, twisting to avoid enemy fire. Converting from vehicle to robot at blinding speed, he uses every trick in the book to get close to his opponent, and put his powerful swords to work.

Team up with this AUTOBOT ally and get ready to take on DECEPTICON forces! Unleash shifting battle armor courtesy of MECH ALIVE gearing in robot mode. And don’t forget to deploy his fierce-looking “blades” for extra battle power! Then, with a few twists and turns, change the robot figure to a super sleek Corvette® Stingray concept car in vehicle mode – and get ready to roll out!

Detailed robot-to-vehicle figure features MECH ALIVE gearing for shifting battle armor – and deployable “blades” in robot mode!

Sideswipe"Revenge of the Fallen" will be introducing a small army of new Transformers into the movie universe. One of these shares the name (but little else) of a G1 Autobot: Sideswipe. In G1, Sideswipe was a Lamborgini and one of the primary warriors in the Autobot ranks. This time out, he's one of the Autobots based on a real life vehicle: the Corvette Stingray Concept.

Vehicle Mode:
When the "Revenge of the Fallen" figures debuted at Botcon 2009, Sideswipe was one of the most in-demand figures. This proved true when by Sunday morning I went around to ask dealers if they had him and every single one had sold out of the sleek character.

Like his G1 counterpart, Sideswipe is a sleek and expensive car, but this time he's a Corvette Stingray Concept vehicle. Unlike the 2007 movie's Bumblebee Camaro, this one is not so much an advanced look at a mass release but rather a proof of concept of what GM would like a future Corvette to look like. The vehicle design borrows elements from its Stingray predecessors including two raised sections on the sides of the front and back. It has a slightly raised section at the center of the hood and the front end is significantly longer than the back end. Features like this seem modern, but actually pay homage to classic vehicles and that is a touch I always appreciate in vehicle design.

Sideswipe's vehicle mode has all the above features and more. The front end features the thin, rectangular headlights found on the real life vehicle as well as the grid shaped grille in the front. The checkered flag logo is sculpted into the front of the car in the same spot you can find it on the real life vehicle. The overall shape mirrors the Corvette with its low profile and aggressive, sleek styling. Other beautiful details include the very angled doors on the sides and the thin, angular sideview mirrors.

Small details matter a lot too, and Sideswipe has those as well. The wheels have the same five spoke design as the real vehicle, and includes some small detailing around the edge of the wheels with small, round indents. Look beyond the spokes and you'll see mechanical parts sculpted into the inner part of the wheel. I know this has been standard practice for a while now, but I love seeing it used. Sideswipe also features a "stingray symbol". On the back of the car it is set dead center (which you can see in this picture here). Stingray symbols are also found on the sides, near the front wheels. I love the fact that these details are sculpted in rather than just being tampographs or painted details. It adds a bit of realism and they look fantastic. The final detail I love are the four exhaust pipes lined along the bottom edge of the car's rear section. These mirror the ones form the real concept car and give it a sleek, yet aggressive appearance matching the rest of the vehicle.

Sideswipe is cast in grey, black, translucent blue, clear and metallic flake grey plastic. Most of the body of the car in this form is cast in the metallic flake grey plastic. the windows are cast in translucent blue and the wheels are done in black. The grey color is used for the exhaust pipes piece in the rear. The clear plastic can be found on the front end, where it is used for the headlight details.

Paint-wise, Sideswipe uses two paint colors: silver and red. Most of the body of the car is silver, and the wheel spokes are colored silver as well. The rear lights are colored deep red. While this doesn't sound overly spectacular, it actually has a really nice look about it. It should also be noted that this color scheme is keeping with the color scheme of the actual vehicle's colors, so they do come from a valid source. As a word of warning, I would make sure to check your Sideswipe before you purchase it. Several of the Sideswipes I saw at Target already had noticable scratches on the top of the car or hood (basically, anywhere with silver paint). I had to go through about five before I found an unblemished one. I hope it was just that one wave, but it is something to keep an eye out for.

Transformation to Robot Mode:

  1. Separate the door pieces from the main body of the car.
  2. Push down on the rear wheels to slide the robot arms out from under the body of the car.
  3. Swing out the robot hands on each arm.
  4. Push down on each front portion of the headlights to separate the robot feet from the main body.
  5. Swing the right side hood panel down a bit, then out to split the hood into two halves.
  6. Swing the rear, center panel of the car (with the rear, translucent blue windows) up.
  7. Swing the robot waist section down and then up against the piece where the robot arms are hinged on. Pushing the tab into place will push the robot head up.
  8. Swing the hood panels down to form wing-like structures on the back.
  9. Fold the panel with the exhaust pipes down and point the exhaust pipes forward.
  10. On each foot, swing the round inner panels down, and then rotate the silver panels out of the way so you can swing the wheels down to connect to the inner panels.
  11. Swing the front silver panels on the feet to the sides.
  12. Swing the panels with the sideview mirrors back, then swing up the door panel on its hinges so it's vertical against his back overlapping the panel with the sideview mirrors.
  13. The blade/panels on each arm can be swung forward to form his sword weapons.

Robot Mode:
When I reviewed several toys form the first movie, I really tried hard to link the forms to something the past, but that seems to be a losing battle in a line which features designs quite different than your average Transformer. Instead, I'll focus on what I'm rather impressed by: how the designers took a rather different Autobot form and made it into a figure. You can check out Hasbro's wallpaper of Sideswipe for reference. While Sideswipe does have a couple features of a "classic" Autobot design including part of the car becoming his chest and doors on his back like wings, his configuration is entirely different. Here, the chest piece is formed from the rear of the vehicle, not the front. The door 'wings' on his back are vertically oriented rather than being flat against his back and set horizontally.

Sideswipe has a really fantastic amount of detail. His upper arms look like layers of armor and machinery over other layers of armor and machinery. His waist section is V shaped, but has bits of armor slanted upwards in blade-weapon like designs. The waist connects to his legs partly by four tubes with ball joints at the end. What's really cool is that when you move his upper legs, these tubes move in tandem with them, creating a really nice effect. His legs are mostly armor, but feature small panels of inner mechanics on the knees and lower legs. Look at the back of his legs and you'll find spring-like designs that are found on the CGI model of the character. His root head is an interesting design. Like the rest of this figure, he looks fast and sharp, and his head fits that description with a roughly triangular shape and helmet elements stretching across the forehead and back at angles.

The design of Sideswipe's legs is rather unusual. He has a "chicken walker" type backward slant on his legs and he basically has wheels for feet. The bits from the car on the feet help brace it, and contrary to how it may look in photos, he's not that hard to stand. Sideswipe also features blades on his arms which rotate in tandem with each other as you swing them out - super cool. The blades can be swung back "at rest" or forward in an attack position. They look really cool and even have slanted edges, looking like swords. In all, Sideswipe features seventeen points of articulation in robot mode including four in each arm and three in each leg.

Sideswipe shows a lot more silver/grey and metallic flake grey plastic in this form courtesy of his robot parts. His upper arms, loewr legs and chest are mostly metallic flake grey while his waist and upper legs and forearms are silver/grey. Paint is minimal in this mode as well with his knee armor painted dark blue and a silver Autobot symbol painted onto his chest. The top of his head is painted silver, and the red from the rear of the car now shows on his chest itself, something that is shown in the CGI rendering linked to above.

Final Thoughts:
Sideswipe is one cool toy, no doubt. He has a super sleek vehicle mode (based on a real life vehicle to boot), a well detailed and sculpted robot mode with play factor as well. By pulling off his rather unusual leg structure so well in robot mode, I have to give the designers high marks. I honestly didn't think this figure would stand well on its own, but it has and I'm happy about that. Highly recommended!