RM-21 BURNING BEAST CONVOY
Series: Robot Masters With Beast Convoy's Burning form granting him ten times normal strength, he can pierce through 50 cm of iron plating with a single blow. However, since this form has a severely high energy consumption rate, it can only be utilized for brief durations.
: Thanks to fellow TF-Fan BlackZarak for loaning me his Burning Convoy for this review.
: Burning Convoy (or Burning Beast Convoy, rather) is basically a downsized version of Optimus Primal
with only a very limited number of changes. This smaller figure foregoes the Mutant Head gimmick, as well as the mechanism for having the figure whirl its arms around. The arms were changed as well, as there is no morning star hidden in the right arm, instead both arms feature blasters that are actually more faithful to Primal’s TV appearance than those of the original Ultra-class figure. The figure still carries the swords, though, and the shoulder cannons are in place as well, though without any firing projectiles this time.
Obviously the colouring has changed as well. The Robot Masters line contains a normal-coloured Beast Convoy, too, but this variant here pays homage to Convoy’s “Burning” variant from Beast Wars II (see below). Pretty much the entire robot is made from clear red plastic with only the weapons and some details being gold. Whether that really makes him look like he’s on fire is debatable.
The bottom line here is that this robot is a very nice, fun mini-me of the larger Ultra-class Optimus Primal, one of the best figures of the entire Beast Wars line. While RM Beast Convoy has less gimmicks, he is just as articulated and features everything you actually saw in the TV series. So the bottom line here: a great robot mode, even though I’d personally prefer the non-burning version.
: Burning Convoy naturally transforms into a gorilla still, no changes here. And except for the red colour and the golden flame image on his chest (shades of Hot Rod?) it’s a very faithful miniature version of the gorilla mode of Ultra-class Optimus Primal. Little else I can write here, really. No gimmicks, just a plain, good-looking gorilla mode with the same articulation as the bigger version. Not spectacular, but good.
: Optimus Primal, simply called Convoy in Japan, had a guest appearance in the Beast Wars II Special alongside Lio Convoy
where, in order to defeat the mighty Majin Zarak, the two Convoys pooled their Matrix energies to assume powered-up forms. For Primal / Convoy it was a “Burning” form, meaning he turned all-red and was on fire for a while there. It’s part of that whole Japanese thing where characters always acquire new and special powers just in time to deal with the latest menace with no explanation given whatsoever. Just accept it! The original Burning Convoy was a clear-red variant of the original Ultra-class Optimus Primal, so it wasn’t much of a stretch to utilize the downsized Robot Masters Beast Convoy figure for another Burning Convoy.
Considering that I’m a big fan of the Beast Wars line in general and the original Optimus Primal figure in particular, I’m very glad to finally get a chance to review the Robot Masters version of it. It’s smaller, simplified in some ways, but still excellent. What I’m not a big fan of is the Japanese habit of creating “Black”, “Ghost”, or “Burning” versions of every major character, so I’d have much preferred the standard version of this figure. So some minor points deduction for the unnecessary homage to an unnecessary variant. Apart from that, though, great figure.