Out of all the Transformer lines that I collect, Transformers Animated is the most recent one next to ROTF. I admit, when I first saw the Animated designs, I was like, “WTF?!” For a G1 purist, the cartoony and whimsical look of TFA was an absolute abomination. It was easy for me to disregard the show completely.
But being the hardcore TransFan that I am, I couldn’t stay away for long. I first saw the Animated toys back in the summer of 2008. I didn’t buy any, but they did grab my attention. I was impressed with the way the toys looked, but at the same time I wasn’t sure if I wanted to invest in a line in which I do not intend to watch the show. Fast forward to around April or May of 2009. I was at Target when I happened upon this Voyager Sunstorm and Activator Ratchet 2-Pack for a measly $5! I wasn’t collecting TFA, but it would have been a crime to not buy the set at such a price. And so I made the purchase and these two became my first TFA figures, one whole year after the initial launch of the line.
I opened the set sometime later, and I was thoroughly impressed with Sunstorm. I was still skeptical of the cartoony design, but I was impressed by the mechanical engineering of the toy and how well it captured that animated look. The Sunstorm figure was robust and had good articulation. The transformation from robot to jet was clever, and the toy designers succeeded in integrating the animated style as part of the transforming function to produce a high-quality figure.
As collectors, we all know that once you buy that first piece in a set or line, you have opened the floodgates to the rest of that line. And so I started to acquire more TFA figures. My next purchase actually came from Cragislist. I bought 15 figures for $80 from zversus. He’s both a big TF fan and a big Gundam fan so check out his youtube vids. But anyway, they were all in really good shape, and with a modest $85 investment I now own 17 TFA figures. Not a bad start to the collection of this line if I dare say so myself.
Between then and now, I bought about half a dozen more TFA figures. I found good deals on all of them. Ultra Magnus I found with my buddy Gemini at TRU for $20 (he got one too). I had a coupon for Wreck-Gar. The only exception was Leader class Megatron. I paid MSRP for him at Amazon, but I don’t regret it one bit b/c he’s such a cool figure. Overall, I’m very impressed with the Animated line of toys. I’m still kinda turned off by their designs, but over time it has kinda grown on me. At least now I find it tolerable. And their looks are still heads and shoulders above the bug-like designs of the Michael Bay TFs. Gemini gave me the Season 2 DVD for xmas and I shall be watching it soon.
But back to the post at hand. Prowl is a character I wanted for a while in this line because, well, he’s Prowl. He’s a very important character in G1, 2nd in command only to Prime in the first two seasons. In Animated he’s one of the 5 central Autobots. I love both ninjas and samurais so I was looking for the Samurai version. I was very happy to find him on the shelves of TRU on Tuesday. I had to pay MSRP, but at this point I’m not really complaining. TFA is officially over, so once these figures are gone, they’re gone.
I will be opening him soon and doing a full review. Stay tuned… Tranform and Roll Out!