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First/Last Comic Appearance (US) -
First/Last Comic Appearance (UK) -
First/Last Cartoon Appearance -
First Toy Appearance - 1985
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Manufacturer - FansProject
Toyline - Causality
- Added a Decepticon symbol to the chest
When I was a young lad I was very lucky in that my dad would travel the world on business and occasionally come back with a shiny new Transformer for me. On one such occasion he bought back a bright yellow and Green Insecticon. I was puzzled by this. Was it fake? I had only ever seen the standard purple, black and yellow Insecticons. regardless, I thought it was really cool. I took it into school, and all my mates questioned the authenticity of it. I think they were jealous. It is easy to forget how scarce information regarding things like this was prior to the Internet; over a decade later I would find out that this figure was never released in the UK, along with a fair few other figures. This annoyed me greatly although balance was later partially restored when Europe got Overlord and the Americas didn't. In my school, occasionally other kids would present exotic transformers - one friend had Blaster, another Shockwave. One pal even had Sky Lynx. None of these saw a UK release! But rather than treasure my rare specimen, I stupidly swapped it for a Targetmaster called Pointblank. To this day I don't know what I was thinking and immediately regretted said transaction, ratified by the traditional spit 'n handshake. So anyhow, when FansProject announced that they were homaging my long-lost Barrage, I was really excited. The protracted saga of me acquiring him took over a year, due to supply issues, but then when you have been waiting over 25 years, what difference does 1 more year make?
Appearance (Robot Mode) 9/10
I'm surprised how well this mould serves both Bombshell and Barrage - was this the plan all along? What is notable about this mould is his impressive bulk - he looks squat and powerful. He does a good job of hiding his kibble, with the forelegs either visible or hidden behind his shoulders depending on your preference. The rear insect legs are neatly folded on the lower leg of the robot. The replacement headsculpt almost perfectly evokes the original, with the difference being that his spiky 'crest' is a wee bit more laid back, to allow clearance for transformation. Overall, I actually prefer this use of the mould to Bombshell, namely because the colour scheme looks great on this figure. There are many white accents which help to break up the beautifully garish expanses of yellow and green. I'm not sure what the chest symbol is, but it works here a lot better than the tampograph on Bombshell.
Appearance (Alternate Mode) 8/10
This homages the original Barrage toy successfully, and, hurrah! The front legs are now fully formed, as opposed to being stalks which are augmented rather dubiously with ninja weapons. The 'mouth' is far nicer than Bombshells, because the front portion of the rifle is used as opposed to the dagger. Colour wise, everything looks great, but unfortunately the 'eyes' are not picked out in a striking red, as was the case with Bombshell. This diminishes the overall look somewhat, but I still feel that this marginally retooled alternate mode is superior to the original.
This figure has a relatively simple transformation (especially for FansProject), although the arms take some mastery. The groin and hip panels are slid up to allow the legs to telescope into each other, which they do once they are rotated and tabbed together. The feet are then folded in, and the insect mode legs are then unfolded and moved into position. The head is covered by the insect 'mouth', which is folded up from its position on the back in robot mode. The both shoulder pads are rotated around, and the arms swing behind the back, with the fists slotting in to tabs on the underside of the leg. This step can be tricky unless the elbows are aligned properly. Lastly, the front of the rifle detaches to form the mouth thingy.
Fantastic, there's not a lot that this figure can't do. From top to bottom this figure is blessed with a ball-jointed head, lateral and side-to side shoulder articulation, bicep swivel courtesy of a ball-joint, and forearm swivel. There is no wrist articulation but then this is not really needed thanks to the forearm articulation. There is also a ball-jointed waist and hips; with the bonus being that the hip and groin panels can be moved for a greater range of movement. This figure also has bicep swivel, jointed knees ankle tilt and swivel. The low center of gravity of this figure coupled with large feet and tight joints mean that this figure is super poseable.
Something about the plastic that FansProject use always makes me worry somehow, for me there seems to be less 'give' in the plastic, in that it feels very good quality but is slightly brittle. Maybe this is unfounded but I am always more careful with the FansProject stuff (perhaps the price might have something to do with that!) I have no specific worries with this figure, because there are no transformation steps which make me wince.
Overall - 42/50
As a lover of obscure and neon-coloured G1 characters, this figure had already ticked 2 boxes for me. Add to that my childhood infatuation and regret regarding my original figure and I would have bought it no matter what. It is a bonus, then, that this figure works so successfully, and surpasses the original use of this mould as Bombshell. I am very happy to finally have this character back where he belongs - in my collection.