Series: Generations Thrilling 30 Disrespected by Megatron one too many times, Starscream decides to turn on the Decepticon leader. He once fought to earn honor in the eyes of the tyrant. Now, he will stop at nothing to earn his revenge.
This figure is, of course, an updated version of Armada Starscream
from 2002. The robot is a near perfect match to the original toy, just smaller (Deluxe now, Mega/Voyager then) and far better articulated. While the Armada toy wasnít exactly a brick, it was a far cry from modern standards in terms of articulation. This Generations figure, on the other hand, is fully on par and can move in just about every which way you want.
Some more differences to the original: the big cannons on the shoulders can flip backwards to lie flat against Starscreamís back instead of always sticking out backwards like they did on the original toy. Also, no Minicon needed to activate the missile launchers. Starscreamís other weapon was changed as well. The original Armada figure could detach one wing to use as a sword. The Generations figure, on the other hand, has two swords which are stored behind the wings. I had a bit of a scare the first time I removed those swords from their storage place as I thought I had broken them in two, but that was just the hinge where the sword unfolds, which can easily be put back together.
So what else is there to say about this robot mode? Cool look, great articulation, a great homage (he even has Minicon powerlinx ports on both forearms), so there is really nothing bad I can say about this mode. Two thumbs up and letís move on.
Starscream transforms into a Cybertronian jet fighter that is an almost exact match for the alternate mode of the original Armada toy (only smaller, naturally). The only difference I can think of is that the robot arms are now lying alongside the jet body instead of forming pods underneath the wings. The jet has a functioning landing gear and the missile launchers work in this mode as well, of course. And... yeah, thatís pretty much it. A very nice jet mode, a good homage, no complaints.
By the time the Armada series came around we hadnít seen Starscream for quite some time. He had a brief guest appearance in the Beast Wars TV series, but no new toys since Generation 2 (not counting the name recycling for the Machine Wars series). In Armada, though, Starscream was back as part of the main cast, though the character was quite a bit different then the scheming back-stabber of old. He was a competent warrior, originally quite loyal, but quickly grew disillusioned with his leader Megatron and even briefly switched sides to join the Autobots, where he enjoyed a friendship with the human girl Alexis (which led to a disturbing amount of questionable fan fiction and fan art).
The look of Armada Starscream was recently brought back in the pages of the IDW comics as a new form for G1 Starscream as he took over leadership of Cybertron. See the included comic book for more on that. How long that look will endure, given that the IDW bots are switching bodies quite often, is anyoneís guess, but for now what you have here is the current comic book Starscream. And he looks quite good to me. So bottom line: a very nice toy with no flaws worth mentioning. Whether you enjoy the Armada homage is subjective, of course, but even apart from that there is very little wrong with this toy. A good catch for every Starscream fan.