"Timelines" Botcon 2008 Blurr Toy Review


General Information:

Release Date:
Price Point: $78 (Packaged with Sideswipe, Whisper & Rampage, limited to 1100 pieces)
Retailer: Botcon 2008 Exclusive
Accessories: Missile launchers x 2, Missiles x 2, Cyber Key (Speed Planet)

*Official photos from Botcon.com.

In the 1986 animated "Transformers: The Movie" feature film, fans were introduced to an Autobot unlike any other. Moving at super speeds and talking just as fast, Blurr occupied a rather unique place in Transformers history. For many years after G1, he was ignored for the most part but eventually the character name was brought back as Armada Blurr, but that character really had little to do with the G1 version. Later however, the Cybertron series would release another Blurr, this time with a head sculpt that was based on the Generation One character. Fast forward to the year 2008 and an alternate universe version of the character was introduced as part of the "Shattered Glass" universe.

This version of Blurr is unique among Botcon exclusives in that the mold we based it on was also named Blurr two previous times. The first time, this sculpt was Armada Blurr, which was later retooled and recolored into Cybertron Blurr. This made this sculpt a natural choice to represent an alternate universe version of the character. This review will focus on the changes made to thie sculpt for this release.

Vehicle Mode:
Between the Armada and Cybertron Blurr figures, there were two very different color schemes, however they both utilized shades of Generation One Blurr's primary color: blue. With this incarnation of the character, we wanted to stay consistent with the "black" theme of the Shattered Glass "Seekers". For the most part, the Seekers had a black base with signature colors on top (such as Rodimus being black with purple). To that end, black plastic is the primary color used in this form. It is not a flat black, but rather a metallic flake one, complete with bits of silver flaking in it to give it a sparkling appearance. The translucent parts have all ben replaced with translucent orange, including the Cyber Key. You'll find a hint of dark blue plastic towards the front of the car. A more neutral shade of blue plastic is found on the missile launchers. Each of the missiles (which double as cannons in this form) are cast in grey plastic.

The key to making this vehicle look exciting was not so much the base plastic colors, but rather the colors put on it. The black acts as a wonderful canvas for an amazing deco comprised of electric blue, silver, red and metallic black. The blue is the most striking of the colors, forming a lightning pattern that starts at the front of the vehicle and sweeps to the back all along the sides. It's not something you see often on Transformers and even less so to this level of detail, so it really catches the eye. The silver color is found all over the vehicle including the front hood, the wheels on the sides and several of the engine pieces towards the back. There's a really nice looking silver stripe pattern painted down the middle on the top of the vehicle, with red filling in some details in the middle, creating a wonderful contrast. The metallic black color is used along the top of the vehicle's cabin section. to match up with the black on the rest of the figure. The Cyber Key also uses black paint around the perimeter with the lightning symbol in the center vac metallized in silver.

The blue lightning element is the one that most harkens not just to Generation One Blurr, but also the ability of Blurr to draw "speed" from the energy of others. The silver colors add some fantastic focus to the mechanical details such as turbines and exhaust pipes. Overall, this is a very powerful looking color scheme.

The Cyber Key gimmick is the primary gimmick in this form. Insert the Cyber Key into the back of the vehicle and the sides swing down, converting Blurr from a ground vehicle into a flying car. This also reveals the launchers on the missile launchers, allowing you to fire the missiles. No new paint decos are revealed, but you do get a much better look at the launchers, which are cast in blue with black ends on the front and back. The gimmick still works perfectly and I had no problems with having the sides flip down and snap back into place.

Transformation to Robot Mode:

  1. Flip the wings down and detach the weapons.
  2. Swing the small, central panels on the sides down.
  3. Split the front of the vehicle and swing them out to the sides.
  4. Flip the vehicle over and swing the main body (head to legs) forward.
  5. Swing down the back section.
  6. Extend the robot legs down.
  7. Flip out the robot feet and heel pieces.
  8. Push the shoulder armor pieces up.
  9. Straighten the arms out.
  10. Place the weapons in the hands.

Robot Mode:
In robot mode, a lot more blue comes shining through as a featured plastic color. There are two primary shades of blue here, a dark and medium tone blue. Both are metallic in nature. The darker color is used on parts like the front panels of his shoulder armor, chest and lower legs. The medium blue is used on smaller joints like his elbows and hip joints. The other parts are made up of two types of black plastic: flat and metallic. The flat black plastic can be found on parts such as his feet and head, while the forearms and the waist plate are metallic. This color combination works very well to evoke a "dark" version of Blurr as they stay true to the character while evoking a sinister feel.

All the colors that were present in the vehicle mode appear here including red and silver. The silver is the most heavily used, found on the robot face, the "cluster missile" details on his shoulders and the lower legs. Red appears on his robot face on his one eye and the scars over the other one (more on that in a bit). A couple of new colors appear in the form of yellow, white and purple. The white and purple work together to form the Autobot symbol on his chest. The yellow is found on the head, where it is used to paint the details on either side of his chin and on the crest. The colors keep continuity with the vehicle mode, while not overwhelming you by having even more lightning details in this form. It's a nice balance between modes.

Blurr was one of the Botcon figures that received a new head sculpt. Many people may wonder what the point of this was. After all, the Cybertron Blurr figure already had a head sculpt that was very much based on the Generation One character. We did consider saving money at one point and just reusing that head, but the more we thought about it the more it made sense to try to improve upon that sculpt and make it different. Like the Cybertron Blurr head sculpt we used many of the "classic" Blurr elements including a "helmet" section that slopes downward towards the back, a raised pod attached to the top of the head and ridged lines running along the sides from side to side.

So how does it differ from the other Blurr head sculpt? This head sculpt is a bit more narrow and tightly detailed than the one used on Cybertron Blurr. And then there is the eye. With the concept of an alternate universe, we wanted to play with several tropes of that type of tale. Rodimus having a mustache and beard was one. A character having an "eyepatch" was another, hence Blurr getting the eyepatch with some evidence of scarring behind it. It makes the character distinctive and adds to the air of menace that his colors already exude. Of the two sculpts, I prefer this one to the other.

All of the joints on this figure are tight and he has no issues with stability. The missile launchers work perfectly as well.

Final Thoughts:
Botcon figures are generally not targeted at everyone, they are for a very focused group of fans. Blurr is based upon a figure that, by today's standards seems a bit stiff and lacking play value, but there is fun to be had here, just not a whole lot of posability. I love the deco on this figure and I think the head sculpt is the best one this sculpt has ever had. That said, after market prices for this figure easily go over the $78 for the original set, so I would only recommend this to hardcore fans who want a complete "Shattered Glass" set.

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