TRANSFORMERS WAR FOR CYBERTRON TRILOGY (HASBRO)
Despite his prominent placement in the franchise as a whole and in the tie-in media for the War For Cybertron Trilogy, mainstay Autobot Bumblebee has been completely absent from the main line for the first two parts of said trilogy. It’s been a weird, almost gnawing omission, since we got Cliffjumper and a handful of other Bee-esque molds throughout the year, and he’s also had a fairly sizable role in Netflix’s tie-in animation. Eventually, he surfaced, but rather than being a mainline release, he’s instead part of the previously repaints-only Walmart tie-in line for the animation. Oh joy, another Walmart exclusive.
THE FIGURE ITSELF
Bumblebee is part of the second round of Walmart’s War For Cybertron Trilogy line, and is part of the five piece deluxe-class assortment, alongside three repaints, and the similarly new offering of Elita-1. In his robot mode, Bumblebee stands 4 inches tall and has 22 workable points of articulation. In theory, he’s based on the cartoon, but…well, he’s not. Bumblebee had no Siege figure, so while many of the characters featured in the cartoon used direct copies of the original CAD files, Bumblebee was an all new model created for the cartoon. These two designs are certainly drawing from the same source (G1 Animation Bumblebee), but a spitting image of his cartoon counterpart, he is not. Structurally, this figure is, as expected a re-tool of the Cliffjumper mold from early last year. It was probably my favorite mold to come out of Earthrise, so it’s definitely a good starting point. He gets a different head (shared with Bug Bite, but obviously designed for Bee), as well as new parts for his mid-section and feet. Why the new parts for the mid-section and feet? That’s because…
…he also gets a new alt-mode! While Bug Bite and Hubcap both shared Cliffjumper’s generic sports car alt-mode, Bumblebee gets his exterior pieces replaced, allowing him to transform into an authentic, fully-licensed Volkswagon Beetle. The general transformation sequence is the same as all prior uses of the CJ mold, so there’s still that little touch of parts-forming required with the back of the car, but I still really don’t mind. It’s a decent transformation sequence, and ultimately it results in quite a nice alt-mode for the figure. It’s clean, it holds together well, and it’s undeniably a Beetle. It also means that Bee stands out a bit from the other uses of this mold, which feels appropriate for him. Bumblebee gets the same accessory selection as all prior uses of the mold: the modular cannon thing. It’s in the same colors as Cliffjumper’s. It’s a fun piece, and adds a lot of variety to the figure, so I don’t mind getting it again.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
Obviously, I, like a lot of people, have been waiting for a proper Bumblebee in this line since Siege launched. Simply put, it’s stupid that they opted to make him a Walmart-exclusive, because it guarantees that he’s going the be hard to find and go for stupid amounts of money on the aftermarket. They really need to stop making core looks exclusives, especially to Walmart. Hopefully, the plethora of fiascos revolving around these exclusives in the last year will get Hasbro to ease up on them a bit moving forward. As I’ve said on a lot of these exclusives, I hope that Hasbro finds a way to make these more readily available so that more people can get them, because Bumblebee is a very nice figure, and goes very well with the rest of the standard line. Also, a shout out to Max for setting me up with this figure, so that I could, actually, you know, have him. That was super dope.