TRANSFORMERS TOYS AND MERCHANDISE SECTION
Cliffjumper's review: Bluestreak
"I never met a Decepticon I didn't dislike."
Bluestreak often talks incessantly and inanely. Lightens the situation for all Autobots with his good-natured manner. Despite formidable weaponry and blazing speed, he hates war. Haunted by memory of Decepticons destroying his home-city. Fires bombs up to 8.3 miles and lightning-like 80,000 volt beam up to 12 miles of limited accuracy. Often inhibited by his disdain for combat.
The Diaclone Fairlady-Z mould could probably have a website to itself, what with all the different uses and reuses. The toy was issued in late 1982, in either silver with black trim, or silver with blue trim (which, incidentally was used for the box art and some catalogue shots for Bluestreak, starting up the whole "blue Bluestreak" myth).
In 1984, the mould was used for Bluestreak in the Transformers line, but a plain silver variant was used, while the animation model used the silver and black version, and the boxart, as mentioned above, the silver and blue version.
The same pattern was retained in Japan in 1985, where the character was renamed Streak. Confusion isn't helped by the Marvel comics, which used all three schemes at various points. Got that? Talk about making things complicated...
The upshot, though, was in 2002 Takara reissued the silver/black version as a Premium for the #2 Prowl reissue, known as Anime Streak. Which is what we have here. As a side note, in 2003, Hasbro reissued the plain silver version as Silverstreak (renamed for copyright reasons), and Takara would do an all-chrome version known as Chrome Streak as a Premium for the #5 Smokescreen reissue.
The car mode is very nice, uncluttered without being bland like the original Bluestreak. The black/silver scheme works very well, though the different tones used on the die-cast and the plastic jars a little, especially on the chrome rear windows.
The 'anime' makeover also does Streak a power of good in this mode comparative to Prowl and Smokescreen - the plain original always looked rather dull in contrast to the nicer recolours.
But this looks very swish, if still not quite as impressive as the retools. That said, the paint on the right side of my example could have been crisper... Annoyingly, the rub sign (never a favourite thing for me) is idiotically placed smack in the middle of his left door, a bit of an annoyance after the sensible position given to Prowl's (just in front of the windscreen).
The transformation's nice, interesting without overdoing it and leaving you frustrated, a la Jazz. Thankfully, the stiffness from the Prowl reissue isn't transferred across to his Premium.
The robot mode looks great, though you'd be wise to leave off a few stickers - those on his upper thighs just jam up when you transform the figure, and I've always found the 1984/85 cars to rather overkill on the circuits. The colour scheme really works in this mode - the divergences in plastic colour aren't quite as noticeable, and the red breaks things up beautifully. Also if you position his doors just right, you can't see the rub sign.
Poseability's minimum - like most Diaclone-originated TFs, the arms are fairly articulated, and the rest is all solid. Still, he's a great display piece, and a significant aesthetic improvement on the dour original Bluestreak.
10 - inventive without being over-complicated, a simple clear classic.
4 - the roof connection is fragile, as are the rear windows, but it won't break in your hands or anything. just not being a clumsy oaf or under about 12 should sort things out.
5 - even with firing launchers, there isn't a massive amount of features beyond the very good transformation. More of a display piece.
6 - the eHobby Premium figures generally seem to have stayed at around the same price they were five years ago, so while he isn't cheap, you probably won't have to take out a second mortgage to afford him. Forty-ish quid, then, though they don't come up too often.
8 - on its' own terms the figure is very good, without ever quite attaining true greatness. Even with the improved colour scheme, both Prowl and Smokescreen are more visually appealing, and considering they use the same basic mould, are much better bets.
In terms of the eHobby version... if you already have a TRU Silverstreak, it's probably not worth upgrading for firing launchers and a bit of black paint (I'm assuming you all had the good taste to upgrade to vintage chromed weapons already; if not, then the upgrade has another thing going for it).
If you don't have a Bluestreak or Silverstreak, the Anime version probably deserves some serious thought - it's not a massive amount more, but feels a little bit more like a toy in its' own right, rather than some sort of blank slate for future variants.