"Beast Wars Transformers" Powerpinch Toy Review


Powerpinch is a regular Beast Wars Transformers toy. Following the concepts laid down by other toys such as Airazor and Razorclaw, this toy combines a compact size, multi-step transformation with a cool mold. Powerpinch would later be used as the basis for Vice Grip, the Botcon 1998 exclusive toy. For those curious, Vice Grip was voiced by Garry "Optimus Primal" Chalk during the Botcon 1998 stage reading.

Beast Mode:
In beast mode, Powerpinch is a earwig bug. His primary color is a nicely deceptive one. At first glance and under regular light, his main body appears black. However, when put up against light, his body shows as a translucent dark green. Other parts including his legs, details, rear pincer etc. are all bright orange. His beast mode eyes are bright yellow. The mold on this toy is very detailed, down to cross hatching on the beast mode's eyes and orange "dots" protruding from his back. The bug legs however don't hold up the entire body so he winds up resting on his underside a lot.

Transformation to Robot Mode:
Powerpinch's rear rump and pincer detach to form his hand weapon. The bug head splits in half and folds out to form the robot arms. His bug mode's backside lifts up and his waist folds into the vacant spot along with his legs, forming his waist and legs. His arms fold down and form the chest. The pincer fits into his hand and may be moved back and forth for a "gripping/slicing" action.

Robot Mode:
In robot mode, Powerpinch is very well proportioned, looking much more organic than mechanical. He stands well and looks rather powerful even with his small size. His lower arms, chest, head and legs are primarily the previously mentioned transluscent dark green. His legs have orange and silver accents painted onto them, adding a nice level of detail. His upper arms, waist, upper legs and "arm tips" (which are supposed to be hands or fingers but don't look much like them) are all bright orange. In robot mode Powerpinch has ten points of articulation. His pincer weapon can be fit into a hole via a peg in the weapon, but it does not always stay in place well, especially when one moves it back and forth to have the pincer "grip/slice". Despite this one drawback, this toy is fun to play with and add to your collection. B+

Updated Thoughts (January 30, 2022):
I've spent so many years reviewing figures since Powerpinch that I have forgotten how wonderfully different the design of this was compared to most Transformers released in the past twenty or so years.  While technically "bio-mechanical", both modes of this Predacon look like organic modes and I love that Kenner did not shy away from doing that with this figure (and many others).  If the goal was to distinguish itself from its predecessors, Beast Wars did that exceptionally well when it used designs such as this.  It's not a perfect figure (the weapon needed a bit more work) but overall I am still really happy with it years later.

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