Blackjack's review: Motorarm
Beast Wars Telemocha reissue
"Follow your fate no matter where it leads."
Motorarm is one of those fun Japanese characters that has an almost identical toy to his US counterpart, but had a completely different character. The toy was called Ram Horn in the US and international market during the Beast Wars run, and he was one of the oldest Predacons in the council. He combines with his fellow cohorts Cicadacon and Sea Clamp to form Tripedacus.
In Japan, the Tripledacus combiner is released as the Maximal subgroup called the Jointron Brothers, which combine to form Tripledacus. The Jointron brothers are easy-going people, and they love music, and learns martial arts all over the galaxy. No, really.
Flash forward ten years. The Beast Wars 10th anniversary (it's, what, 15th now?) toy line is here. In Japan they celebrate it with Beast Wars Telemocha, show-accurate reissues of the toys.
Now Motorarm has never been on my 'get' list for the Beast Wars toys. Megatron I already have while Dinobot and Cheetor have their universe versions, which I hope would be superior. Waspinator has his upcoming Animated toy. Optimus Primal, Howlinger, and Archadis are what I'm looking for. But since life doesn't go by the script, none of the toys I want were there. Feeling angry, I bought Motorarm instead. The reason being, I'm short of Autobots/Maximals, and besides Motorarm just reminds me of the Insecticon Bombshell. And I love the Insecticons. All seven of them.
So Motorarm is out of the weird-shaped packaging. I've reviewed reissue toys before (G1 Jazz, the Seekers and the Minibots) and I had expected that Motorarm's appearance and poseability would not be as good as the modern toys. But he proved me wrong on that.
Motorarm is a rhinoceros beetle. Or maybe an elephant beetle. That's all I can tell ya. I ain't no biologist, they all look the same to me. Numbat? Help? Like G1 Bombshell and G1 Barrage before him, and Energon Insecticon after him. Unlike Bombshell, whose toy is basically a brick with antenna, horn, eyes and legs, Bombshell managed to pull the insect mode perfectly. Unlike the iffy beast modes of say, Cheetor or Rhinox, Motorarm's alternate mode looks almost like the real deal.
This is done by the extremely superior paint job. Comparing with the mold's earlier releases, Telemocha Motorarm is painted a beautiful shade of brown, which brings life to the rhino beetle. This thing resembles the large beetles in Japan. (I've seen some in my trip to Japan.)
Poseability is limited. The four back legs are stationary and swept behind, while the two front legs rotate on ball joints near Motorarm's noggin. Speaking of his head, Motorarm's horn is rather impressive, and is fairly poseable. It's just a pity the red of the robot mode legs are distinct in insect mode, but hey, nobody's perfect.
All in all, a decent Bug mode. No flapping wings or such, but charming nevertheless. Realism (which neither the G1 Insecticons nor Energon accomplished) is the charm which I like about this fella.
Like half of the toys in Transformers universe, Motorarm has a mid-transformation attack mode. It is done by lifting his 'wings' up and pulling out the attack blades. It's, um, silly.
From what my untrained eye can see, Motorarm has gotten a more show-accurate paint job than his original release, which I saw in the net. That might explain for the higher price. Damn.
Motorarm is fairly poseable, like all Beast Wars toys. While in insect mode Motorarm has nearly zilch articulation, robot mode Motorarm has neck, mouth, shoulder, elbow, ankle, knee and thigh joints. Well, that's something.
Despite looking a little stout, Motorarm does look a little menacing. The blood red and gray colours brings out his true Cybertronian heritage. Although, personally, I prefer Ramhorn's paint job, all brown and purple. That looks much creepier and better in my opinion. Ah well.
Motorarm's immobile rear legs go on his robot mode legs. Well, that could be useful. He won't have to bend down to pick things up. His two front legs end up on the shoulders, but you can move them to the back to reduce kibble. His hands have two gigantic fingers, but no thumbs. Well, since when have insects had thumbs? His gigantic claw weapon can be attached onto a hole on the palm.
He's back-heavy, due to his wings/abdomen thing being a backpack. This could be resolved by folding it down and using it as support.
The horn ends up Bombshell-style on his head, which has a unique head sculpt. With a red mask, yellow eyes and a large weird mouth, he looks both comedic and creepy. His mouth can move up and down like a chewing motion if you like.
Overall, not a bad robot mode. Back-heavy being the sole problem of this mold.
And, lest we forget, Motorarm combines with DJ and Gimlet to form Tripledacus. True to his name, Motorarm forms the shoulder and arms of the big bot. The 'wings' form the left (our right) shoulder, while the beast mode head, front arms form a three-handed pincer claw. Now the creepiness of the Tripedacus mold is what makes it not
be a comedic Maximal mold, but what's done is done.
Another shell part becomes the right shoulder, and the feet and arm and chest form the right hand.
Motorarm has convinced me to go find Sea Clamp, just to see how they fit in. I'm betting that Takara might reissue either DJ or Cicadacon, then I'll have a Tripedacus.
5/10 Not too hard, but baffles me without a glance at what the bot's supposed to look like.
- 7/10 No, it won't survive a two-floor drop, but it's rather sturdy. Nothing that'll break in a long time.
8/10 Rather cheap. Telemocha toys are at the sale, plus the DVD included makes it worth it.
6/10 if you don't have the other Combiner members. 10/10 if you can form the heroic Tripledacus or the fearsome Tripedacus.
- 7/10 if you don't have the mold's earlier versions. Motorarm's a great mold, has a realistic brown hue, and combines. Plus, you can kitbash him into Bombshell or Barrage. (On the same note, DJ can be turned into Venom and Gimlet into Nautilator) However, if you already have Ramhorn or the original Motorarm, it'll be a measly 2/10. The mold's great, but not really worth a second purchase.