Transformers Animated Toy Reviews: Blurr

in 2008, Action Figure Review, Autobot, Generation One, Transformers Animated


Transformers Animated

General Information:
Release Date: December 2008
Price Point: $10.99 (varies depending on retailer)
Retailer: General (Toys R Us, Target, Wal-Mart etc.)
Accessories: Saw weapon

Images:

*Images from the Hasbrotoyshop web site.

Text from Hasbrotoyshop.com:
BLURR never stops moving. It's a habit he's gained over centuries of working as an undercover agent for the AUTOBOT Elite Guard. Constant mobility is the best way to avoid detection by DECEPTICON agents. He is used to remaining in vehicle mode for months or years at a time – as long as it takes to complete his mission, learn what he needs to know, and escape. Unfortunately, because he spends so much time alone, he's not really used to talking so others can understand him.

Join this mighty AUTOBOT ally as he fights off DECEPTICON forces! The bold-faced BLURR figure is ready for battle at a moment’s notice with his flip-out energy “saw” in robot mode. And when it’s time to bring in the real heavy hitters, convert this detailed figure from robot mode to a recon racer in transport mode!

Blurr is always one of those characters I've found fandom is split on. Some find him cool, sleek and funny (that's the camp I'm in) while others find him terribly annoying. Either way, he is a character that has not received the "new toy treatment" in quite some time (the Armada trilogy character of the same name really wasn't inspired by G1 Blurr at all) so it was fitting that he would be introduced in "Animated". On top of being a character who has not been reinterpreted from his G1 origins, this also allowed designers to take a couple design aspects from Transtech Cheetor and work them into a wide release figure.

Vehicle Mode:
Blurr was introduced in "Transformers Animated" in a rather unique way in that his entire first appearance was unspoken and only in vehicle mode. This gave a lot of emphasis to the futuristic, sleek and very sci-fi appearance of the car. In that way, Animated Blurr is very similar to G1 Blurr, who was also meant to be a Cybertronian vehicle, but a hovering one. This Blurr is a futuristic car on wheels but he still looks like he came right from Cybertron without any modifications. Some inspiration is taken from G1 Blurr's design, particularly in the front end and the canopy. The front section comes to two points in the front, analagous to the two front end extensions on G1 Blurr (which were flat). The hood section also bears some resemblance to the flat front end of G1 Blurr. The canopy looks a lot like G1 Blurr's "cockpit" which featured a window that was angled back very low. Another subtle, but noticable design homage is a sharp pointed piece towards the back, symbolizing Blurr's speed which also appeared on G1 Blurr's vehicle mode.

Blurr's other design homage belongs to a Transformer of another era: Transtech Cheetor. Transtech was an unreleased line of Transformers that were meant to succeed Beast Machines. This line was recently given a comic book story in the official Transformers Collector's Club comic book but a toy line was never made. In this line, Cheetor was given a new design that featured large, hollow rear wheels. These types of wheels are found on Blurr and are significantly larger than the front wheels.

Despite all this cool homage material, Blurr still sports many features all his own. The canopy section has an interesting way of utilizing sideview mirrors, placing them on the top of the canopy rather than the sides. There are some nice angled and pointed details on the sides and what's interesting is the sides don't look like doors at all. I imagine the intent was for his canopy to flip open instead to let passengers in, but I can imagine doors being there as well despite the lack of door handle details. The ends are pointed upwards, looking like angled/shortened versions of the front end. One of my favorite details are the diamond shaped headlights which look fantastic in the front. The result is a great hybrid between new and old design elements.

Blurr is cast mostly in light blue and black plastic. Dark blue is used for certain sections such as the lower portion of the vehicle mode and the front hood section. Red is found on the rear lights and translucent blue plastic is used on the headlights. Light blue details are painted onto the figure on the hood, sides, the top of the canopy and the edges of the wheels. These all match up to details on the animated model that give the vehicle a glowing appearance, as if energy is surging from underneath - appropriate for a character that runs fast constantly. Unlike the animation model, the front end has an Autobot Elite Guard symbol tampographed on it whereas the animated model leaves the area dark blue.

The design of this figure comes very close to the animated model, but the front end is much longer than the vehicle mode in the cartoon. Also, the size difference between the front and rear tires are nowhere near as pronounced in the animation model. Truth be told, I much prefer the figure's vehicle mode as it adds a lot of nice design touches overall.

Transformation to Robot Mode:

  1. Move the sides of the front of the vehicle gently and remove the center/hood piece.
  2. Gently move the side/front pieces up.
  3. Swing out the upper and lower halves of the rear of the vehicle.
  4. Swing the rear halves out to the sides.
  5. You should now be able to see the robot arms. Swing them out then up to the sides.
  6. Straighten out the robot legs and swing them down.
  7. Rotate the lower legs around so the red rear lights form the heel piece.
  8. Turn the robot head around.
  9. Fold the panel on his back down.
  10. Press the button between the two light blue lines on the hood piece to flip out the saw and attach the piece to his lower arms.

Robot Mode:
I think it's fair to say that G1 Blurr was one of the most streamlined G1 Autobot cars of his time. His flat, sleek look made him stand out in both vehicle and robot modes. Animated Blurr continues this character tradition, but also adds some elements all his own into the mix.

I have to say that I love Blurr's overall profile. His shoulders and head all point upwards in almost cone-like shapes, giving him some bulk on the upper body, but this leads to a series of sections from his chest down that go from thick to thin until you reach his feet which end in almost tiny points in comparison to the shoulders and head. While G1 Blurr looked fast because he was flat, Animated Blurr looks fast because he is curved, sleek and slightly flatter than most of his Autobot counterparts.

A couple of G1 Blurr details are given homage in this robot form. The head design has a high crest on it along with line details running from the top of the head down to the sides. These are much sleeker and angled versions of details from G1 Blurr's head. The robot chest looks like it is made up of the canopy from the vehicle mode, just like G1 Blurr. Finally, his weapon is also a bit of a riff on G1 Blurr's shield, which was formed from the front of the vehicle mode as well. That's where the similarities end and Animated Blurr winds up with details all his own.

Most of the details unique to Animated Blurr involve the almost humanoid form he has. In particular, his lower arms and legs are curved and have very (dare I say) organic looking qualities. He has some nice smaller details including rectangles and a trapezoid on his abdominal section and a unique looking face area, where the helmet comes down to a point over the nose, much like ancient Roman helmets. On the legs, you'll find small diamond shaped pieces that serve as knee armor. There is not an overabundance of tech details and tiny sculpted lines on this figure, which is actually a good thing since that means it matches the animated model very well and it adds to the sleek look of the figure.

Blurr winds up revealing a lot of black color in this form on his legs, waist and chest. His arms, legs and abdominal area also show off some dark blue as well, corresponding to the colors on the animated model quite well (with a couple exceptions such as the helmet which is missing two dark blue details painted on either side of the mouth). The blade of his saw weapon is cast in translucent blue and looks more like an energy weapon than a mechanical saw. It has some nice saw blade teeth details on the edge with a V shaped front that is beveled to look like a blade.

Blurr has fourteen points of articulation in this form including three in each arm and four in each leg. I would have liked to see a few more, but you can still pose him pretty nicely.

Final Thoughts:
Animated Blurr is an excellent representation of the TV show model in both forms. I actually find it very cool that he actually looks better in vehicle mode than the animated model suggests, and all the nods to G1 Blurr are a treat for this old skool fan. Highly recommended!