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First/Last Comic Appearance (US) - Issue 11, December 1985 / Issue 50, March 1989
First/Last Comic Appearance (UK) - Issue 49, February 22nd 1986 / Issue 88, November 22nd 1986
First/Last Cartoon Appearance - Episode 7 (Season 1 #7), December 8th 1984 / Episode 25 (Season 2 #9), October 10th 1985
First Toy Appearance - 1985
Click here to see Figure Details and review
Manufacturer - Hasbro
Toyline - Classics
- Added Autobot symbols to the top side of the wings, covering the rubsign
- Added Autobot symbols to the bottom side of the wings, covering the tampographed ones
Jetfire arrived on the scene during the first season of the cartoon, and was swiftly turned from Decepticon to Autobot, his sense of right and wrong eclipsing the relationship with his old buddy Starscream. He was the only flying Autobot for a while (other than whoever was borrowing Sideswipe's backpack) and provided some much needed air support. He was also HUGE and could comfortably house lots of Autobots, in one of the most jarring cases of mass-shifting in the cartoon. A lot of G1 figures did not match up to their cartoon character models, and Jetfire was no exception. The original toy was licensed from the Macross line and the animators were forced to create a model which homaged the toy as loosely as possible. And what's more, even his name was changed to 'Skyfire'. So to recap, he was Decepticon or Autobot, had 2 different looks and 2 different names. It's a wonder he was as well-adjusted as he was. This still didn't stop him disappearing without a trace in late 1985.
Appearance (Robot Mode) 8/10
At first, I was surprised that an updated version of Jetfire was on the cards, because of the fact that the original mould came from a competing toyline. In the original cartoon, the animation model differed massively from the toy for this reason. This new incarnation blends aspects of both successfully, and Jetfire looks awesome when all of his additional weapons and armour are strapped into place. The inclusion of the helmet allows you to go for one look which is faithful to the cartoon, and the other which closer resembles the G1 toy. I prefer the cartoon-accurate look as his head looks a little large with the helmet in place. The chest/cockpit juts out very far from his neck, but this just makes him look broad and imposing.
Appearance (Alternate Mode) 9/10
The jet mode is really exquisite, only really let down by the shoulder kibble which protudes beyond the wings. Other than this, you wouldn't know this was a transformer at all. I love they way that this mode can go from looking graceful and sleek to deadly, thanks to the accessories you can adorn it with. It really harkens back to the original toy, which had so many attachable parts you couldn't help but lose them. This jet is a real rival for the comparatively-tiny Seekers, and has only been recently eclipsed by the purely badass Broadside homage. The wings can be moved out to create a wider span, but this results in parts of the arms being seen, so I keep them close to the fuselage.
Jeftire is a lot of fun to transform, because he feels so sturdy and well-designed. Everything tabs and squares away nicely for the jet mode. Even the backpack has a nice 'automorph' feature, where you can slide a plastic cover down to unfurl the hidden weapons, which spring into place. The head folds into the cockpit and, cleverly, when the helmet is attached, it forms a nice set of guns either side of the cockpit. A lot of thought went into this one.
There is an abundance ratchet joints, which means he is unable to fall out of poses any time soon. His head is ball-jointed, no waist swivel though. He also has lateral and side-to-side movement in the shoulder and hips. He also has wrist swivel and his feet can be 'pinched' together or splayed apart. Inexplicably though, he has zero bicep or thigh swivel. This is very puzzling. Especially considering he does have swivel in his lower legs and forearms. This stupidly limits his poseability. Also, the design of his feet mean that he can have some balance issues, and he doesn't stand particularly well on slippery surfaces. This problem is magnified when the backpack is attached.
Holding this figure, you really get the sense that it has been made of quality materials. My G1 Jetfire lost his arms and pretty much all of his accessories, so I am pleased to report that nothing feels flimsy, and there is nothing in the transformation sequence which puts anything under stress. However, I am concerned that this figure will yellow over time, and I feel that it may have done so to some extent already. This is despite it being MISB when I got him, and kept away from the sun or other strong light sources.
Overall - 38/50
Despite the fact I am very disappointed with the articulation of this figure, Jetfire (Skyfire?) follows the right aesthetic to be one of my favoured TFs. He displays very nicely with Optimus Prime, as they are roughly the same size, and you get the sense of his rank because of this. I am really impressed that Hasbro re-imagined pretty much every accessory that the original came with, making him one of the most accessorised of the 'classicsverse' line. I just hope that he doesn't turn yellow over time, like my original Jetfire.