Click the image above to see the alt mode, or view more photos here
First/Last Comic Appearance (US) - Issue 21, October 1986 / Issue 79, June 1991
First/Last Comic Appearance (UK) - Issue 63, May 31st 1986 / Issue 278, July 14th 1990
First/Last Cartoon Appearance - Episode 57 (Season 2 #41), November 26th 1985 / Episode 98 (Season 4 #3), November 11th 1987
First Toy Appearance - 1986
Click here to see Figure Details and review
Manufacturer - Hasbro
Toyline - Revenge of the Fallen
- Added an Autobot symbol to the chest, covering the sculpted one
- Painted Shapeways hip upgrade kit to add stability
Silverbolt is a pretty daft character, insomuch that he is a plane who is scared of heights. He was incongruous when surrounded by his fellow Aerialbots, being a huge Concorde when the rest of his brethren were small fighter planes. This Energon repaint addresses this somewhat by giving Silverbolt an updated Jet, but what about the rest of the figure?
Appearance (Robot Mode) 3/10
You have two stark choices when it comes to Silverbolt - you can either make his torso look too long, which also exposes acres of gappiness, or you can make his legs look stumpy, but hide much of the gappiness in the process. I have never seen a robot mode with vast acres of nothingness like this one. It really is terrible. I suppose some of this was necessary to facilitate the extra 'combiner' mode, but it really is awful. Other problems is a head that sits too far above the shoulders, and the lack of anything approaching fists. Add to this lots of nasty and cheap-looking kibble on his back, and you have one of the ugliest robots I have seen in a long time. The paint job does at least try to reference the G1 original somewhat, but even a decentish paintjob can't hide the myriad of problems with this figure.
Appearance (Alternate Mode) 7/10
Thankfully, the Jet mode is a lot nicer than the disastrous robot mode, and I am pretty fond of it. I'm not sure that it would fly too well but I like its ostentatious design. It does look a bit sparse, as some of the paint apps are a bit lacking, and also the twin tailplanes are painted on the inside only. I'm pretty sure that this is an assembly error, as I have already had to reassemble the legs because they were wrong. Kudos to FansProject for integrating the gun in nicely with the alt mode, as it now adds some much-needed menace to the overall look.
This is a relatively involved transformation and quite annoying. A major issue I have with it is the fiddly way which the torso is constructed - you have to slot 2 tabs either side of the neck into the shoulders, which fit very loosely. Then you have to fold out some panels in a vain attempt to give the torso some substance. It doesn't really work.
Silverbolt has a fair bit of articulation - he has a neck swivel, ball-jointed hips, 360 degree movement in the shoulder. The Elbows are actually double-jointed and there is bicep and 'wrist' swivel. The knees bend and the thighs rotate as well. The feet are pretty large so balance isn't such an issue. Unfortunately, Silverbolt is so ugly that no amount of good poses helps him. Plus you have to choose angles that don't showcase the massive gaps in his torso, which limits him further.
The figure seems pretty robust, and probably has to be in order to carry the weight of the combiners on him. My concern is the amount of flexible plastic used on the figure. The tailplane, wings and the Superion head are all cast in it, and apparently over the years this plastic can harden and become brittle, or break down and start emitting nasty fluids. Hopefully this won't happen though.
Overall - 28/50
Silverbolt is a very unfortunate figure. Without his ability to form Superion, he would be worthless. Particularly because there is a decent Ultra class version of Silverbolt that actually bears a passing resemblance to the G1 original. But if you want Superion, he is all that is available at present, unless you want to remortgage your children to get the overly large TFC Superion homage.