Friday 31 December 2010

Cybertronian Ratchet Vs. Ratchet WHAAAAT?!???!!!

The Transformers cartoon of Animated was my second favourite cartoon series of Transformers.  While watching this amazing show, I really came to like the depiction of Ratchet in the series.  Part medical officer, part technician, all grumpy old man.  His normal Earth mode deluxe toy is a corker as well, which led me to bother getting the Japanese version.  Then his Cybertronian mode was made into plastic too.  Well since a lot of Ratchet’s story is composed on Cybertron and the cartoon featured it well, I decided that the Cybertron mode needs both versions too!
Due to having to wait quite a while for Ratchet to be released from Japan, I only have his carded Japanese pack to show so far.  It is standard fare and uses the same bubble as the Hasbro one.  The only difference is the cardboard on the back.
Ok, things they both have in common, the articulation of the toy is good.  Overall the toy is designed pretty well.  Lots of movement can be done to it and some cool poses can be made, although I didn’t really discover how cool they could be until I started playing with my Ironhide, as ratchet doesn’t exactly yell ‘I’m an action man’ to me, so I mostly had him standing around trying to make it look like he was complaining about something.  Hips, knees, upper arms, elbows shoulders and head all have some sort of movement to them.  the back pack is hollow and so it doesn’t really affect the balance of the figure much when standing.    he does have some heel spurs which flip out of the back of the foot.  Don’t forget these when transforming into robot mode.
He comes with a couple of defibrillators, which is a nice touch.  A quick press on his elbow and the ‘punch action’ is activated.   The defibrillators clip onto the back of the vehicle mode to hide (quite well) some of the robot bits.  The vehicle mode is a little bit, well, it’s a space vehicle.  So it is a bit hard to describe as to whether or not it’s cool or not.  It is however spot on to the design used in the cartoon.  I find it interesting to compare it to some of the other designs of Cybertronian mode figures, as there is a common theme of their wheels being four sets of treads and a shortness in supplying wheels.  Longarm/Shockwave was one of these and I think Bulkhead’s Cybertronian mode had them as well.  I am afraid its been too long since I saw the show last to mention anymore off the top of my head.
The main colours are red and white, and a bit of black here and there.  Just a little bit of detail of a ‘heartbeat’ line thing on his shoulder, I guess it’s less infringing than a red cross…  Cybertron wouldn’t have had the red cross though.  Although, the design conflicts with him commenting on them when they emerge from the lake and Sari tells him that it’s a sign of help and Ratchets says ‘And here’s me thinking they make an easy target.’ There’s some grump right there baby!  What I really like about CYB Ratchet, is this one is supposed to be younger than the Earth mode one and I think the mould successfully conveys this. He still has the ability to mount Lockdown’s engine on his forearm as well.
His face is younger and looks less worn.   It is the most obviously younger looking part, but taking into account the rest of the body the following comparisons can be made.
  • Cyb has a larger chest. Earth mode, the chest is a bit flatter.
  • The wheels in CYB robot mode make for a set of reasonable looking abdominal muscles.  Earth has a paunch.
  • The thighs on Earth are painted red about half way.  It looks a bit like ‘old man shorts.’ No red shorts on CYB mode.
  • Earth Face has saggy, sunken cheeks, bags under his eyes, broken cowl, warty looking things, his read ‘ear’ pieces looks a little thinner and a grumpy mouth. CYB one has a slight smile, more open eyes, larger chin, cowl is complete.
Old, new, old, new. love it!
Comparing the TakakraTomy version with the Hasbro one, there aren’t any major changes in mould or colouring.  The bits are coloured in the same areas, but the TT version has brighter colours in both plastic and paint.  The TT one has a kind of metallic look to it as well has having a whiter plastic and brighter red plastic.  the Autobot symbol is red with white details.  Whereas HB’s one has duller, matte red and black paint and a sort of grey tone mixed into the white plastic. The red plastic is a kind of slight marron colour as well.  Again is the case when having a look at the HB against the TT version, the TT one is a nicer standalone toy, but the HB one is closer to the look in the cartoon.

I would have to come to the conclusion that neither one is better than the other.  I hate the fence sitting that I always seem to do when it comes to comparing TT and HB versions of Animated, but it seems to generally be the rule that TT’s form nicer looking toys, whilst HB have show accuracy.

EMP Change
The power punch thingo.  Impressive!   (?)
Rest of the pics.

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