Dreams apparently can come true!
Three years ago, I really wished that Takara would give us a proper Sunstreaker Masterpiece Transformer figure. Simply giving us a yellow colored Sideswipe was just not cutting it. Thankfully, my prayers have been answered because they did release an official Masterpiece Transformers version of probably my favorite character in the G1 line.
Takara has had him out for a good number of months now and, in actuality, I’ve had him for approximately the same amount of time. It’s just that I totally forgot to post a review of my Masterpiece Transformers Sunstreaker because, well, it’s just so good that it slipped my mind! That’s not to say that the figure is flawless but I’ll get to that.
The first thing I’d like to talk about is Sunstreaker’s robot mode. I really love it but it does reveal a weird problem. Takara really upped their game with their most recent Masterpiece Transformers figures, specifically with Masterpiece Transformers Megatron as they went with a more cartoon-y look than the more realistic dimensions they used for the earlier figures in the lineup. I have mixed feelings regarding this direction. On one hand, this makes Sunstreaker and future Masterpiece figures look more like the show I grew up with but, on the other hand, this makes them look out of place with my earlier Masterpiece figures as they followed a more blocky and realistic look.
Even so, Takara did a bang-up job with Sunstreaker’s robot mode as they did a great job disguising all of the car bits and everything does fold up neatly. Even the backpack, while still rather large, doesn’t look all that out of place and everything does clip on solidly, making this a masterfully engineered action figure. The only thing that’s kind of a bummer is the rear flap on his butt. While it’s not obvious, especially from the front and the side, it does present itself to be a little obvious that Takara couldn’t figure out what to do with this piece and did their best to find a way to get it out of the way. Not a huge problem but bears mentioning.
Masterpiece Sunstreaker also has a lot of articulation, enabling you to pose him into some great positions without worrying that he’ll fall down. His hips are made of ratchet joints, making them stiff enough that he doesn’t flop to the floor when trying to bend his legs into a running pose.
Most of Sunstreaker’s accessories were made for his robot mode but before we do discuss them, let’s go talk about the most useless accessory Takara bundled with the figure: Chip Chase and his wheelchair. Now, nothing against the character but I don’t see the point to adding him to Sunstreaker. It would’ve been better if Chip Chase was included with someone like Wheeljack or Ratchet as he actually worked with them. But Sunstreaker? Just because the yellow Autobot called him a hero that one time? Anyway, the Chip Chase figure is just a hunk of plastic with no articulation. It wouldn’t be so bad if his wheelchair actually rolled around but Takara didn’t even bother.
With that out of the way, let’s focus on Sunstreaker’s more “fun” accessories. His Flare Gun (AKA the big rifle) is your general chunk of plastic molded to look like a gun. It was nice that Takara made it possible to clip it onto his back via the little slots on his backpack. They also gave him his Electron Pulse Gun (AKA the little pistol) which has a gimmick of its own as you can fold it up and keep it in the hollow portion of his lower leg or jam it in the engine compartment in car mode. However, I really wish they gave us the option to remove one of his hands and replace it with a gun barrel to mimic the look of the original G1 toy. But, like I said, it looks like Takara is concentrating on giving us more cartoon accurate figures at the moment.
Masterpiece Sunstreaker also comes with four different faceplates. You have your “normal” face, your “pained” face, your “smiling” face and, of course, your “alien” face because of that one episode where the Autobots were hired to be aliens in a movie. I honestly like the “smiling” face the most as it reflects Sunstreaker’s cocky attitude perfectly. The alien mask, while a nice nod to that one episode, just feels out of place and I can’t see anyone actually putting him on the display shelf with that hideous thing on.
Transforming Sunstreaker from robot mode to car mode and vice versa is a joy as everything feels just right. Each and every joint moves into place with precision but never feels like you’re going to break the figure. There are even a few minor movements you have to do that aren’t functional, like moving the sides on the top of Sunstreaker’s engine block an inch, but makes the figure more aesthetically pleasing to look at. The only niggling issue I have is that you have to tuck in the windshield in between the figure’s back and the backpack and it does have a tendency to snap off. Thankfully, Takara designed it so that you can simply slide it back into place without breaking the figure.
Sunstreaker’s car mode has a few gimmicks of his own. You can fold in the silver engine air intakes into a cavity in the back of the car to make him look like a “regular old” Lamborghini Countach sans the modification. But, as the metallic air intakes are one of Sunstreaker’s defining features, I don’t see why anyone would do that. The engine block also hides a little gun that pops up in between the spoiler so you can recreate that one scene where Sunstreaker shot down that one Seeker in that one episode of the G1 cartoon.
Takara also added a ton of articulation on the car to make it look and feel like an actual model of a Lamborghini Countach. You can pop up the headlights just like the car. You can even open up the front truck forward just like the car. You can even open up the doors upward, yes, just like the Lamborghini Countach! It’s really amazing how much detail Takara put into the car mode and I really appreciate it.
Overall, I’m very pleased with what Takara did with Sunstreaker. He’s definitely a credit to the Masterpiece Transformers line. There is a small part of me that wanted a little more, such as giving us the option to connect a gun barrel to his arm to make him look like the original G1 toy. I’m also of two minds regarding the decision to make him look more like the cartoon than a highly detailed action figure. But those issues are just me nitpicking on what is definitely a great collector’s item. Sunstreaker’s always been a favorite of mine from the cartoon and I’m incredibly happy his Masterpiece Transfomers’ incarnation is just as great as I imagined it to be.
What are your thoughts on Takara’s Masterpiece Transformers version of Sunstreaker? Let me know in the comments section below!