SS-26 WWII BUMBLEBEE
Series: Studio Series
Remember that Bumblebee guy? You know, star of six live-action movies, most of whom grossed over a billion dollars? Sure you do! But do you also remember how he fought in World War 2 and killed some Nazis? No? Then you are among the lucky few who either managed to avoid the mess that was The Last Knight or managed to purge it from your memory. Anyway, Bumblebee fought in World War 2, though he apparently forgot about it. Hasbro didnít, though, so now we get a WW2 version of Bumblebee in the Studio Series. Which doesnít have enough Bumblebees yet, apparently.
Letís get the obvious out of the way first. Bumblebee is a shell-former. An unapologetic shell-former, even, as he basically carries the entire vehicle shell on his back. Now being a shell-former isnít necessarily a bad thing, but in this case itís definitely not a good thing. Not only does Bee carry one big rucksack there, the hood of the car mode also forms the back of his thighs, where they impede both his feet and get stuck on his rucksack.
When looking at him from the front Bee doesnít look half-bad, actually. Itís strange to see him in military green, sure, but otherwise he looks pretty good. Sadly a closer look reveals further problems here. The joints in the shoulders and elbows are very stiff, which is good for holding the weapons, but not so good when the figure tends to come apart. The front of the shoulders should tab into the chest plate, but the tabs are a little too far back, meaning tabbing them in only works for a second or two. Thankfully the figure holds together regardless.
In terms of weapons Bee carries a hand-held missile launcher and a big war hammer, the latter being the hammer he carried in The Last Knight. An undocumented feature is that he can hang the hammer on his back if he doesnít need it. So bottom line for the robot mode: nice to look at, cool-looking weapons, but plenty of design problems. All in all, thumbs down.
In the Last Knight flashback we saw Bumblebee disguise himself as a 1940s Mercedes-Benz car. This isnít what this figure transforms into, though. The concept art for the movie had Bumblebee as a British Humber Light Reconnaissance car. Which also isnít what this figure transforms into. He becomes a Humber Scout car. Anyway, I guess the main thing was that that they didnít want to have Bumblebee transform into a Nazi car.
The car itself is green. Totally green. Where the robot mode had some greys and other colors to break it up, the car is just green. Only the wheels and weapons break up the green. So much green. Apart from desperately needing some colored details, the car itself looks pretty good, though itís quite a pain to get all the plates lined up properly. This is especially true once you install the carís anti-tank gun (the converted war hammer), because you have to plug everything in 100% perfectly, otherwise the roof wonít close properly. The hand gun goes on top and can rotate.
Bottom line for the car mode: better than the robot mode, but still with some design problems. Bonus points for the visible head syndrome in the back, though, which makes it seem as if Bee is hiding in his own trunk.
The Last Knight movie introduced the Order of the Witwiccans (a supposedly funny wordplay combining the religion Wicca with the name Witwicky), who had been tasked with keeping the existence of Transformers on Earth secret. Given the numerous paintings and records on display of Transformers being part of historic events, one must assume the Witwiccans are really, really bad at their job. Anyway, one of said historic events was Bumblebee partaking in an assault on a Nazi base during World War 2 (and a transforming watch that killed Hitler, apparently). While this didnít really make any more sense than the rest of the movie, it was a fun idea to have Bumblebee in a vintage 1940s disguise.
Sadly the figure trying to make that fun idea reality does not succeed. The robot mode is nice to look at from the front, but thatís pretty much it. The car mode is okay, though aligning everything to that the plates fit together is difficult. Add the fact that we arenít exactly hurting for Bumblebee figures in the Studio Series (or anywhere else, for that matter) and I can only recommend this figure to absolute die-hard Bumblebee fans who intend to get every single version of him. Everyone else should spend their money elsewhere.
Tags: - Autobot - Bumblebee (Movie) - Hasbro & Takara - Military Vehicle - Studio Series
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