Series: G1 Reissues Encore Let my fellow mechanical beings go!
He sometimes has his mind stuck in low gear, believes 55mph speed limit is infringement on rights of cars. Garages are prisons to him... doesn't understand Earth machines are not alive. Goes 180mph, range 600 miles. Uses ferrocobalt magnet under hood to be pulled by and within a few feet of other vehicles, reducing his fuel use to near zero. Prone to overheating.
Tailgate is a retool of the 1984 Minibot Windcharger
. While they share the same vehicle mode, lower body and arms, the chest and head of Tailgate were retooled extensively, resulting in a much more intricate and detailed figure. This is the 2008 Encore reissue of the figure, which features blue paint on his visor instead of it being silver like the rest of the face, but otherwise it's identical to the 1986 figure. Tailgate has a great-looking face (though the paint could have been more carefully applied in the case of my figure) and a sticker on his chest that looks curiously like a radio. Anyway, articulation is the same as Windcharger, of course, meaning Tailgate can bend his knees and swivel his arms at the shoulders. Not exactly great, but fully okay for an 80s Minibot. So bottom line, certainly not a revolutionary robot, but a great example of how to recycle an existing mold without making it a mere repaint.
Just like Windcharger Tailgate transforms into a Pontiac Firebird Trans Am sports car, though white instead of red. The big tires look a bit out of place on what is supposed to be a sleek sports car, of course, but otherwise there is nothing worth complaining about here. The car looks good, though detailing is limited, and as long as you're not looking at the underside it could easily pass as a Matchbox or Hot Wheels car. A good, solid vehicle mode.
Tailgate scored a brief appearance in the Transformers cartoon during the season 3 opener "Five Faces of Darkness", where he was among the Minibots who futily tried to defend the Ark from Trypticon. That, plus some background appearances in the Marvel and Dreamwave comic books would be it as far as media appearances went for Tailgate until the recent IDW "More Than Meets the Eye" comic series, where Tailgate is part of the main cast. Which is also what prompted me to finally write a review for this guy, seeing as I've had him in my possession for some years now.
Much like Swerve
Tailgate was created by using one of the 1984 Minibots and giving it a different (and in my opinion vastly improved) head and chest. Sadly none of the three got much screen time in the G1 cartoon, but they're all appearing in the "More Than Meets the Eye" comic now, so after 26 years they're finally getting a chance to shine a bit. Anyway, Tailgate might not be among the original G1 gang like Windcharger, but in my opinion he's the superior use of the mold and a fine little Minibot. Recommended to G1 fans and people who love IDW's "More Than Meets the Eye" comic book. Which I do, you know. Just in case you were uncertain after I mentioned it repeatedly in this review. So go and buy the comic and then go and buy Tailgate.