Dark of the Moon Jolt Toy Review

in 2011, Action Figure Review, Autobot, Dark of the Moon, Deluxe, MechTech, Revenge of the Fallen

Dark of the Moon

General Information:
Release Date: April 2011
Price Point: $12.99 (varies depending on retailer)
Retailer: General (Toys R Us, Target, Wal-Mart etc.)
Accessories: Blaster/Hand Cannon

Images:

While the Cyberverse makes up a smaller scale of figures in the "Dark of the Moon" toy line, the size class most fans are used to returns with "Mech Tech" technology. The generaly concept behind "Mech Tech" are weapons that transform from one type of weapon to another. These have standard peg sizes that allow the weapons to be swapped between figures. One of the characters chosen to join the Deluxe scale of Transformers this time out is Jolt, who appeared super briefly in "Revenge of the Fallen". He played a critical role in the combination of Jetfire's parts to Optimus Prime at the film's climax, so at least he got to do something before basically disappearing by the end of the movie.

Mech Tech Weapon:
Since the Mech Tech weapons are critical parts of this toy line, I will review the weapons separately if they have some type of functionality. How they work with each figure will be discussed in the review of the various modes. I will make one general statement that will probably be replicated throughout several of the first (and possibly second) wave of deluxe figure releases regarding the Mech Tech weapons: they cannot stay in their "transformed" state without being held in place. Most Mech Tech weapons are spring activated, and when you release the switch that transforms them, the weapons automatically revert back to their previous form. This is important to note as the packaging clearly shows the weapons can maintain their alternative forms with no mention of requiring support (this could change).

Is this disappointing? Absolutely. However, it must be stressed that this seems to only apply to the deluxe wave one so far. Larger figures do have weapons that can "stay" transformed and who knows? A future deluxe wave may have figures that can stay in their alternate form. Also please note that in my photos, I had to use various tricks to make the weapon stay in its alternate form (including liberal use of paper and paper clips to keep them in place).

Jolt's weapon has two forms. The default mode is a "blaster" mode. The design however speaks to a weapon that greatly resembles a machine gun. The front barrel has oval shaped openings on the sides, reminscent of the circular holes on the sides of real life machine gun barrels. The top of the weapon has a targeting scope and the back section looks like it has a hammer sculpted on top. To transform the weapon, pull the targeting scope back and the rather bulky sides of the weapon swing out and move towards the front, extending the length of the weapon. The "machine gun" like barrel is then covered up by these side sections and in the front, a new barrel is formed. This barrel looks more like a scifi energy weapon and looks super cool. Even cooler? Two of the hinge pieces that swing forward in this mode have tiny barrels themselves, looking like extra weaponry mounted on the sides of the cannon. The weapon's transformation is very dramatic looking and looks like something you would see in one of the live action movies.

The weapon is cast in black and light blue plastic. The black makes up most of the weapon, with the light blue plastic used on the targeting scope, the hinge pieces on the sides and the "machine gun" barrel. I really like this weapon and this is one of those that makes me really wish these could be locked in their alternate forms.

Vehicle Mode:
Jolt transforms into a vehicle based on the real life Chevrolet Volt. This hybrid car was introduced with much fanfare the past couple of years as one of a new generation of cars that would use less gasoline as it is partly powered by electricity. This made his name and ability to manipulate electricity very appopriate. The vehicle mode is a very sleek looking four door car. Jolt has many of the distinctive features of the Volt including:

  • The front grille is divided into two sections, each with a pattern of raised shapes inside.
  • The grille has the Chevrolet logo sculpted into the front of the vehicle.
  • The headlights have a very thin shape that extends from the front of the vehicle to the sides a bit, this is sculpted into this figure.
  • The lights under the headlights have the Volt's distinctive L shape.
  • The side view mirrors are sculpted with a tear dropped extension that extends to the front sides of the vehicles.
  • The back end has wrap around rear lights just like the real life vehicle.
  • On either side of the license plate, there is a strip of lights on the real life vehicle. This is sculpted into this version of Jolt as well.
  • In between the two rear lights in the center is a second sculpted Chevrolet logo.

Looking at photos of the Chevrolet Volt on the official web site, I'm really impressed by how many of the small, distinctive details of the real life vehicle were captured in this sculpt. However, there are some differences. The top of the vehicle and the hood has an interesting jagged pattern that looks almost like the tracks on a tire. This sculpt is also missing the small antenna found on the top of the real life vehicle. As "Dark of the Moon" has not been released yet as I'm writing this, I have no idea yet if this is accurate to his appearance in the film (if he appears at all), but I can say that these differences serve to make Jolt look more distinctive even if not 100% accurate to the "showroom" version of the car.

In this form, Jolt is mostly made up of grey, translucent grey and black plastic. The grey makes up most of the vehicle, with the cabin cover and windows cast in translucent grey. This grey is also used for the lights in the front. His wheels are cast in black. These colors seem influenced by the version shown on the official Volt web site. Paint applications are done in black, red, gold and silver. The black is the most heavily used colors. You'll find it on the top of the vehicle and on the back section. Red is used for the rear lights (matching the colors of the real life vehicle) while gold is found on the Chevrolet logo in the front. Silver paint is found on trim that starts at the front of the vehicle, running along the edges of the cabin section to the back. It adds a really nice metallic splash of color and looks fantastic. In addition to paint, there are some light blue tampographed stylized "circuit" type patterns along the edges of the windshield and on the sides. These details really add a lot by hinting at the robotic nature of the vehicle. Overall, I'm very happy with this color scheme.

On the top of the vehicle are two grey circles where you may insert Mech Tech weapons (or other standard sized weapons such as those from "Energon"). I really like the way these circles pop up and then push down as you insert the weapons. I prefer that over the vehicle having two big holes on top.

Transformation to Robot Mode:

  1. Flip the car over and pull out each of the robot arms, and swing them out over the rear wheels.
  2. Push the side panels out a bit to separate them from the front section.
  3. Extend the front section to begin forming the robot legs.
  4. Push the hood pieces in and swing the front parts of the vehicle mode up to form the robot feet.
  5. On each foot, swing down the heel pieces.
  6. Pull the side window panels to the sides out a bit.
  7. Swing in the black panels from the top of the vehicle mode.
  8. Swing the rear section of the vehicle down.
  9. Split the panels on the back with the Chevrolet logo halves to reveal a hole. This attaches to the tab on the triangular piece from the main robot body.
  10. Swing the robot head forward from the rear section of the vehicle.
  11. Turn the wheels on his feet down to help provide stability.
  12. Any of the Mech Tech weapons can be attached to the holes on his forearms or the hole on his back.

*Note: My photos neglected the step of turning the wheels on his feet in, I hope to correct this in the future.

Robot Mode:
Jolt has definitely changed up his robot mode from "Revenge of the Fallen". His previous toy had a much bulkier design, but this one is more streamlined and a lot of his parts wind up in different places, leading me to suspect this represents a slightly rebuilt version of Jolt. Many of his key features from "Revenge of the Fallen" remain intact including:

  • The distinctive "bird" like head design remains including a high crest in the center of his head and a mouth that looks more like a beak.
  • His forearms end in clawed hands instead of fists or fingers.
  • The center of Jolt's body has several triangular designs pointing up and down.
  • Parts of the robot legs (the knees specifically) look like the wheels integrated into the leg's transformation.

There significant differences are more structural in nature. His doors and windows split, forming wing-like sections on his back. His robot feet are formed from the front of the vehicle mode, looking more akin to a Generation One Transformer in style. Many of his parts are in very different places than the previous version of Jolt. For instance, the first version had the robot arms embedded in the halves of the cabin section of the vehicle whereas here they are separate pieces that swing out from the bottom of the vehicle mode. The net result is a much sleeker looking robot mode, and I would say more refined. While I liked the previous Jolt figure quite a bit, this is definitely an improvement over that one.

Jolt shows off the same colors in this form as the vehicle mode. Like the vehicle form, the grey color dominates, but you see the translucent grey plastic on parts such as his upper legs, and not just where the windshield halves wind up but also on the actual hip joints themselves! The plastic colors alternate the most on the legs where they go from translucent grey, to solid grey, to black, then grey again.

Paint applications are done in the same colors as those seen in the vehicle mode. The robot head has black details on the mouth area with blue eyes. The same light blue is found on the forearms and the middle of his body. At the very center of his torso is a black Autobot symbol. Some red paint lines show from the rear of the vehicle, offering some additional color variety. Overall it's a nice looking color scheme that is quite refined looking.

Jolt has seventene points of articulation in this form. This includes an interesting swivel joint arrangement on his arm. It doesn't bend at the elbows, but instead is sculpted partially bent. The forearm is on a swivel joint that allows it to move out and in. It's an interesting design choice that isn't seen very often. Each leg has five points of articulation, not counting he ability of the heel piece to be moved for different poses. Each of the robot arms has a hole that can accomodate a Mech Tech weapon and on his back, you'll find a hole in the center that you can store his weapon on. I like this particular touch a lot as it was not 100% necessary.

Final Thoughts:
Jolt is a cool update of the character from the previous film. The only thing I kind of hold against this particular iteration of the character is the size of the figure. When standing next to "Revenge of the Fallen" Jolt, he looks a bit small in both modes. The figure itself is great, but it's sad to see the size needed to be reduced to save costs. Other than that however, this figure is cool and looks great in both modes. Recommended!