"Q Transformers" Prowl Toy Review
Release Date: December 2014
Price Point: $7.99 (Varies by retailer)
Retailer: Japanese Exclusive
The "Q Transformers" toy line takes its character assortment from various "Transformers" toy lines from over the years. Several figures from the first wave of "Q Transformers" come from the Generation One era of "Transformers" toys. One of these initial releases is Prowl, the Autobot tactician.
The "Q Transformers" are small Transformers figures, true to the "Choro Q" toys that inspired them. Each figure is in a bubble that slides into a cardboard backing. The packaging is about 4 inches (approximately 10 centimeters) high and almost 3 inches (approximately 7.6 centimeters) wide. The cards used on the figures depend on the where the character originates from. Prowl comes from the non-movie side, so his card art features Autobots as they appear in the "Q Transformers" web series.
Prowl transforms into a Nissan S130. Among other names the vehicle went by are the Datsun 280ZX, and Nissan Fairlady 280Z. One of the hallmarks of the "Q Transformers" line is its attention to detail with respect to the real life vehicles they represent. In Prowl's case he has a lot of the 280Z's features including:
- The hood has a distinct, raised section in the middle with smaller indentations flanking it with vents sculpted in.
- Both the front and rear bumpers have two raised, vertical rectangles.
- The front half of the car extends out significantly further than the back, one of the key features of the S130 design.
- The headlights are round and have a section of the vehicle's front end extending out in front of them.
- The top of the vehicle has a distinct set of lines outlining the moon roof panels above the driver and passenger seats.
- The gas tank cover is located behind the rear wheel well just like the real life car.
- The rear lights look like two rectangles stacked on top of each other (though the one on top has one side that is angled).
- There is a single exhaust pipe in the back on the right side.
Taking things one step further, Prowl also borrows from his G1 counterpart's police car details including a curve that comes to a point in the middle on the front of the car and a lightbar mounted onto the roof. These were key features of the police car version of the Nissan used in Japan. Overall the sculpts on the "Q Transformers" continue to impress. For such a tiny car, there's a ton of detail on this figure. He pays homage to G1 Prowl very well while still being super deformed and "cute".
Prowl is cast in black and white plastic. White makes up most of the car with black used for the wheels. There is extensive use of glossy black paint, starting from the front bumper, going to the sides over the wheel wells and wrapping around to the rear bumper. Red is used on the lightbar, the rear lights and the lightbar. Light metallic blue is used on the headlights and all the windows are painted with a metallic grey (resembling a light gunmetal color). In a finishing touch the sides of the wheels are painted silver. This deco is absolutely gorgeous and captures the character perfectly. I am especially impressed that details like the rear lights and the sides of the wheels are painted. Once upon a time this was common, but current practice generally leaves details like this unpainted.
Prowl is about 1.5 inches (approximately 3.8 centimeters) long and about .75 inches (approximately 1.9 centimeters) wide. In this form he's built to roll on all four wheels.
Transformation to Robot Mode:
- Turn the vehicle over and swing down each robot leg and straighten out the feet.
- Split the rear section of the vehicle and swing the halves forward.
- On each of the rear vehicle halves, swing out the robot arms.
- Swing down the cabin section to reveal the robot head.
Prowl's robot mode sculpt is a super deformed version of the robot mode from the Generation One cartoon. His head is large, the front of the car forms the torso and his shoulders are huge while the legs are tiny. He has many of the elements from that design including:
- The head sculpt features a large central crest with two horns sticking out the side, iconic features of the Prowl head design.
- Each of the forearms is boxy with ridges running along them in rows, a design borrowed from the G1 design.
- Like his G1 counterpart his chest is formed by the front of the vehicle mode sticking straight ahead.
- Prowl's feet are sculpted to resemble the halves of the vehicle' mode's rear section including having small "windows".
In terms of deco most of the effort went into the vehicle mode. With the exception of the head, all the rest of the deco in this mode carries over from the vehicle mode. The head features red horns, blue eyes and a silver face. If this robot mode were to be perfect, his forearms would have been painted black and his feet would have had some deco on them. Instead, both those parts are cast in white plastic while the thighs are silver. The joits that connect the arms to the body are also silver. Truthfully the figure doesn't look bad at all, and he's instantly recognizable as Prowl both in terms of deco and design.
Since they all have the same body structure, Q Transformers also share the same articulation. Altogether there are nine points of articulation on this figure. That includes the shoulders, elbows, hips, knees and head.
At the risk of sounding repetitive, I'm really enjoying the "Q Transformers" line. The sculpting and deco are fantastic and true to the original character. Recommended if you're into more "cute" styles of Transformers figures!