Revenge of the Fallen Autobot Ratchet Toy Review

in 2010, Action Figure Review, Autobot, Movie (2007), Revenge of the Fallen

Revenge of the Fallen

General Information:
Release Date: February 2010
Price Point: $12.99 (varies depending on retailer)
Retailer: General (Toys R Us, Target, Wal-Mart etc.)
Accessories: Missile x 1, Missile launcher

Images:

*Images and text from Hasbrotoyshop.com:
AUTOBOT RATCHET doesn’t know why LOCKDOWN is after him. He just knows that the DECEPTICON bounty hunter will stop at nothing until his AUTOBOT prey is in chains. AUTOBOT RATCHET isn’t configured for heavy combat, but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t have a few tricks up his manifold. LOCKDOWN may catch him eventually, but AUTOBOT RATCHET isn’t going down without a fight.

Recreate exciting movie scenes or stage your own living room battles with this AUTOBOT hero! In robot mode, this fierce fighter features MECH ALIVE gearing that activates his launching EMP blast missile accessory. When you’re ready to send your AUTOBOT RATCHET figure chasing after his enemies, convert him to Hummer H2 truck vehicle mode and send him tearing through the “streets”!

Many characters from the first Transformers feature film carried over into "Revenge of the Fallen". Among them was Autobot Ratchet, the medic of the group who also showed some serious battle prowess in the first film. His role was minimalized quite a bit in "Revenge of the Fallen", but that doesn't mean the character was ignored in the toy line. Early 2010 has seen the release of a new version of Ratchet, this time as a deluxe class figure. Rather than some sized down version of the Voyager Class figure, this is a whole new sculpt that attempts to improve on the look of the character in toy form from his previous incarnations.

Vehicle Mode:
Hasbro has had plenty of practice recreating the Hummer vehicle mode that Rathet adopted on Earth thanks to several Voyager and Legends Class releases. Somehow, in this compact scale he looks really neat. There's something about the deluxe scale that is perfect for one of the main characters from the movie. It's not too small, not too big, it's just right especially alongside say, Leader or even Voyager Class Optimus Prime. While this vehicle mode is a very well done rendition of the Hummer, it does sacrifice a bit of movie accuracy for its gimmick, but more on that in a bit.

First, let's focus on the figures' accuracy to the real life Hummer. Overall, it has the same boxy shape in the back and curved front section as the real life vehicle. There are cages protecting various parts of the vehicle including the front end, the top and the rear lights. A spare tire rests on the back of the vehicle and the wheels elevate the main body of the Hummer relatively high off the ground (allowing clearance for some robot under carriage kibble as well). Smaller details are not neglected either. The cage in the front of the vehicle has three circular lights in the middle, the door has the door handle details and a horizontal indent in the same spots as the real life Hummer. He even has the winch detail on the front end. There was a definite attention to detail when making this figure resemble his on screen counterpart as much as possible.

All that said, there are some rather significant design changes. These are focused on the top and rear of the vehicle. On the top, there is still a cage, but the row of four lights mounted on top as well as Ratchet's siren have disappeared. Instead, there is a set of details on a rounded hinge section that look like they could be lights (just not round ones set as high as those on the real life vehicle). The other section that has undergone significant change is the rear of the vehicle. While it does have a spare tire, the tire rests on a cage set at an angle on an exposed area (hiding robot parts mostly). This is different than the squared off and enclosed rear section from the vehicle used in the film. It looks cool however, giving the appearance of a type of Hummer/pickup truck hybrid. Normally I'd be a stickler for movie accuracy, but truth be told in this case I can easily let it slide. I mean, it does seem a bit silly that he doesn't have a siren, but overall he 's instantly recognizable as Ratchet and the modifications do look cool, especially the angled part in the back, which keeps him from looking overly boxy and chunky.


Ratchet is cast in green, black and translucent blue plastic. The green makes up most of the vehicle including the front end, doors and side. Black is mostly found on the cage pieces, including those on his front end. Some of the cage is in a slightly lighter shade, looking almost more like dark grey on the cage pieces that angle back at the rear of the vehicle. The translucent blue is mostly used for the windows, which look great along with the three circular "lights" on the front cage. Paint applications are done up in red, yellow and gunmetal. The red is the most prominant, foun don the sides of the vehicle running from the front to the back with its familiar "life line" design and the words "Search & Rescue" on the red line. His Autobot symbol with "Search & Rescue Fire Dept." can also be found on both doors. Underneath that are hazard stripes in red and yellow. The gunmetal color is foun don the front end of the vehicle as well as on the gun mounted on the top.

Ah yes, the gun mounted on top of the rescue vehicle. You've gotta love it when a vehicle meant to save lives includes a big honkin' missile launcher! This weapon is roughly based on the design of Ratchet's weapons from the first movie with triangular sections at the base and bottom and three raised triangular pieces on either side. The gun holds one translucent blue missile that is fired by pressing the button at the back of the weapon. If you're going to have to lose a couple details like the siren, then you may as well replace them with something crazy like a missile launcher, so I'm totally cool with this design change and it distances us a bit from the previous versions of this character in toy form.

Transformation to Robot Mode:

  1. Detach the missile launcher if attached and set it aside for now.
  2. Pull the front and rear halves of the vehicle apart slightly to loosen up the connection points in the center.
  3. Swing out the front wheels to the side, revealing the robot arms and head.
  4. Straighten out the robot arms.
  5. Swing out the rear, side panels of the vehicle.
  6. Extend the robot legs straight down.
  7. Fold the half of the rear panels with the wheels on them over the other half using the double hinges.
  8. Swing the section with the robot head and arms on it down a bit, then rotate it around.
  9. Move the section with the robot head up.
  10. Swing down the front portion of the vehicle mode and use the tab in the center to fit into its corresponding slot.
  11. Swing the panel on the back up, collapsing it against his back.
  12. Rotate the panels on his shoulders around and swing the wheels in, then fold the wheel panels over.
  13. Rotate the lower legs around.
  14. Swing the heel piece on the back of each foot out at an angle.
  15. Attach the missile launcher to the gears in his right forearm.

Robot Mode:
The first thing that strikes you when you see Ratchet in robot mode is how slim he is in comparison to other incarnations of the figure. While I did like the Voyager Class figure from 2007, I always did feel it was very bulky looking compared to how the character looked on screen. This version of Ratchet has bulky and thin in all the right spots. Most of his bulk is focused in the upper body. The chest is made up of the front of the vehicle and his shoulder armor is big enough to give the sense of power and size the character had in the movie. Then his forearms and legs are thin enough to give him an almost sleek appearance. This matches up with the CGI model and a lot of the artwork used for the first movie and it's nice to see that look duplicated in a transforming interpretation of the character.

Many of the smaller details of Ratchet's CGI model carry over to this figure. First of course is his rather unique head sculpt, which is triangular in shape with a wide top section that narrows down to his mouth. The chest is made up of the front of the vehicle, complete with his distinctive lights and cage in front. His fingers have a curious arrangement looking like there are three fingers in the middle with two thumbs on either side of them. There are also a lot of details that look like metal panels and cage frames have twisted to accomodate the shape of the robot mode. You'll find this on his forearms and legs especially. On his left forearm, there is a cage like piece that's actually made from soft rubber, shaped to fit around his arm, looking like it transformed along with the rest of the robot mode. His legs are sculpted with layers of detail that go off at differen angles, giving the illusion of armor panels covering up machinery. It's a neat visual trick to duplicate that look from the movie and I really dig it.

Unlike some other Transformers, Ratchet's colors pretty much stay consistant mode to mode. Here he is still mostly green with some black and gunmetal parts. A bit of red color shows on his shoulder armor, but that's about it for brightness. You will however find some silver and black decos. Black is used on the tube like parts of his feet and the insides of his upper legs. Silver can also be found on the "Mech Alive" mechanical parts inside his upper legs. His eyes are translucent blue, using light piping. It doesn't work particularly well thanks to the small size of his eyes, but it does still manage to look nice. Personally I would have liked to see a bit more paint detail on his legs. It's not like he has a whole lot in this form, so giving him some extra detail lines or maybe even spray ops that look like grime or damage would have been a nice touch.

Ratchet has nineteen points of articulation in robot mode. This includes four points of articulation on each arm and five on each leg. His primary action feature is built into his right forearm. There, you can connect his missile launcher handle into the gears inside his arm. This causes a targeting scope to swing up, activating his "Mech Alive" action. Ratchet also has a bit of "Mech Alive" action going in his thighs. Turn his lower legs on their swivel joints in or out and you'll see the silver mechanical details inside move along with the leg. I really like these two features and they definitely live up to the name, giving Ratchet the feel of a functioning machine. The forearm function in particular is neat because it also alludes the way the Transformers could turn their arms into weapons in the movies.

Final Thoughts:
I'm quite fond of Autobot Ratchet in deluxe form, but I would not be surprised if some fans were fatigued on this character by owning several Voyager Class versions already. I really do love the look of the figure however and his "Mech Alive" features are super cool. I think I'm also happy to finally have a different transforming version of this character other than the Voyager and Legends Class figures from 2007. Highly recommended!