Japanese Transformers Masterpiece Red Alert
If you read my Sideswipe blog, a lot of this may sound familiar
Changes from Masterpiece Sideswipe: I assumed (incorrectly) that Red Alert would just be a repaint of Sideswipe. While G1 Sideswipe and Red Alert did share the same toy mold (with the exception of Red Alert’s lights on the roof) the animation models were different. Sideswipe in animation did not have wheels on his shoulders, nor did he have the two white plastic circles sticking up from the top of his chest. Red Alert had those. The shoulder remolding was more than just adding the wheel, but also had changing the molding on the front sides. Red Alert also had a different head in the animation and is reflected on the toy. The Masterpiece Sideswipe mold has been altered to reflect these differences in animation and has also had the lights added on the roof.
The Good: While he doesn’t transform exactly like the original, Red Alert is a perfect cross between the G1 animation and the G1 toy. Just look at the pictures. Obviously the G1 guns couldn’t be mounted on the roof, but I really like that change. He’s got a really nice transformation, detailed without being super complicated like some Masterpiece toys are. He comes with an interesting accessory. In the G1 episode “Auto Berserk” Red Alert is damaged and goes a bit crazy. During the episode, he has glowing blue sparking around his head. The Masterpiece Red Alert comes with a translucent blue plastic piece to snap on his head and simulate that.
The Bad: He’s about half the size I wanted him to be. I know, they are doing the new Masterpieces to scale, but he’s just too small, about the size of TF: Prime Voyager toy. I’d rather a bigger toy than the scale accuracy. He’s WAY overpriced for the size. This toy is barely 50% larger than the G1, and it was $84. I pay about $50 for the Arms Micron Voyagers that are this size. All the cost is in the name “Masterpiece.” It’s a complete rip off. (I’m not blaming the online sellers. I’m blaming Takara.) Also, there is very little (if any) die cast metal in him. The worst part of all is that he has plastic tires. Even the G1 toys had rubber tires. This is just really cheap. You’re overpaying for the “Masterpiece” name and they don’t even give it as much detail as the G1 had. How they can do such a good job on the toy and then completely blow it on something as simple as the rubber tires? Also, the remolded shoulders have tiny tires on them. If they really wanted it to look right, the entire shoulder should have been the wheel. What they did looks awful.
In short, it’s a great looking toy if you can swallow the exorbitant price, small size, lack of obviously needed details, and silly looking wheels on his shoulders.
Thanks for reading!