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First/Last Comic Appearance (US) - The Transformers: Headmasters Issue 1, July 1987 / Issue 75, February 1991
First/Last Comic Appearance (UK) - Issue 130, September 12th 1987 / Issue 131, September 19th 1987
First/Last Cartoon Appearance - Episode 96 (Season 4 #1), November 9th 1987 / Episode 98 (Season 4 #3), November 11th 1987
First Toy Appearance - 1987
Click here to see Figure Details and review
AKA 'Smart Robin'
Manufacturer - FansProject
Toyline - Function X
- Added an Autobot symbol to the chest
- Added Autobot symbols to the wings
Brainstorm was, unsurprisingly a rather intelligent robot, or was he? was it in fact his Nebulan partner Arcana who was the brains of the bunch? It's thoughts like this which have always led me to not really 'get' the Headmasters, because I don't understand how it all works. I understand the concept, but who does the thinking, or is it supposed to be a synergy of the 2 minds - A kind of 'left brain/right brain' scenario? Anyway, I find it all a bit odd and icky, having never been a fan of the old cybernetic enhancement proposition. I won't be queuing up for any retinal implants for example, urrgh. Anyway, Brainstorm was a fairly forgettable Autobot Headmaster, and his original Habsro figure left alot to be desired. Luckily, he is the lucky recipient of a FansProject homage, so I am here to ask whether getting hold of this figure is a 'no-brainer'. (sorry)
Appearance (Robot Mode) 9/10
This is a very coherent and good-looking figure, with decent proportions and the usual high FansProject standard of paint apps. the Grey and turquoise offset each other nicely, with the splashes of red and orange providing a nice contrast. Brainstorm comes with 2 pistols as with the G1 figure, which can be wielded or attached to the nosecone area in either robot or alt mode. In robot mode I feel this looks better than him actually wielding them, and I can't imagine this particular robot being too quick to go to war, anyway. He has a controversial headsculpt in that he lacks his distinctive faceplate and instead seems to have had an angst-ridden Damian Lewis expression installed. I actually think it makes him look 'deep', like he is pondering life or something equally banal. Some people hate it and are trying to come up with ways of disguising it. This figure is following in the slippered feet of Chromedome, although in this figures case, his feet don't let the rest of the robot down.
Appearance (Alternate Mode) 8/10
This is a very sleek craft, only made possible by some very clever transformations on FansProject's part. As opposed to the G1 flying brick, here we have a more believable craft, with swooping rear wings and a very slim and elegant cockpit section. The cockpit itself can house the little Nebulan dude in relative comfort. I did feel that this mode looked a little drab, but I think that the additional Autobot symbols have injected some dynamism into it. This is a very sleek effort and a huge improvement over the original.
This is a very well-thought-out and implemented transformation, with none of the awkward steps associated with other FansProject lines. You can really feel the influence of another designer here, who is probably a tad more pragmatic and thinks in the real world as well as in terms of the 3D design tool. The result is fantastic, with the chest transformation being a highlight. As is the case with all Headmasters, the first step it to remove the head. Then the chest plate is opened and rotated 180 degrees. The sides of the torso are first pulled out, allowing the middle of the torso to be pulled upwards. Then the sides are slotted into place underneath the elevated section, and everything tabs together nicely. The legs are splayed out in a vaguely pornographic pose and the feet unfolded, to reveal the folded up wings. The feet are folded in to round off the wings. The arms are folded backwards and then folded and slotted into place, and tabs are swung out to connect everything securely.
The head is on a swivel, and can also tilt down which is a nice and unexpected bonus. The waist also has a swivel. The shoulders and hips are both ball-jointed, but the shoulders are slightly hindered by their design. Bicep and Hip swivel are both present. The elbows are jointed and the knees give you and angle of at least 90 degrees. Unfortunately there is no wrist swivel which is a shame because it is slightly less than I would expect from these guys. The feet offer some poseability. This figure has a decent centre of balance and at least his feet look less awkward than Chromedomes.
This is a real improvement for FansProject because the transformation is incredibly innovative, with no scary moments which are synonymous with older FansProject figures. Also, the plastic feels very good quality and all the joints feel tight and resilient. The paint apps are also of FansProject's typical high standards, and overall new heights have been reached with this figure. FansProject seem to be working hard on banishing their Achilles heel.
Overall - 42/50
This line is shaping up to be my favourite, with consistently good figures and also some signs of improvement along the way. It is nice to have great-looking figures come out from the FansProject stable which are also eminently playable. I find myself continuously transforming this figure, so impressed I am by the simple yet complex transformation. I really hope that they take on the 1988 Headmasters when they are done with the original batch, because my Nightbeat is in dire need of replacement!