Release Date: February 2019
Price Point: $5-7.00 (depending on location)
Retailer: Alternative Channels (Family Dollar etc.)
In 2017 word came through the online grapevine that a line of Transformers was being released known as the "Authentics". These figures are simpler, lower priced figures aimed at the "alternative channel" stores such as Family Dollar. In early 2018, the "Authentics" were released in "Family Dollar" stores. By the 2018 holiday season, these figures also appeared at Walgreens stores in limited amounts, but disappeared from Walgreens once 2019 rolled around. Grimlock showed up as part of the "Bravo" assortment in May of 2019 in the United States, however this figure was generously provided to me by fellow fan Griffin from Australia in early 2019.
"Authentics" are separated into two sub-lines of figures. One is a 4.5 inch (about 11.43 centimeters) "Bravo assortment" and the other is a 7 inch (about 17.78 centimeters) "Alpha assortment". In early 2019 a couple additions were made to the "Authentics" assortment. One of them was a "Bravo" Class Grimlock.
"Authentics" figures are packaged on a bubble card. The bubble does not actually cover the entire figure. Instead the figure sits against the bubble and then the bottom part wraps around the insert. Each figure is packaged in robot mode with the insert showing its alt-mode. The card has a vertical Transformers logo on the right and the character's artwork towards the top to the middle. Overlapping the character art is a circle with numbers around it. The artwork used appears to be from the "evergreen" designs which feature classic characters in forms that are not unique to any particular toy line.
This version of Grimlock uses the "Evergreen" design for the character. Previously this had been used for the "Authentics" Alpha assortment Grimlock and to some degree the "Cyberverse" Grimlock figure. Much of this design is taken right from G1 Grimlock, but some bits are more stylized such as the chest and the head. He still retains the classic Grimlock design features including parts of the beast mode forming "wings" on his back, the beast mode legs forming the arms and the rear of the beast mode forming the legs. I really liked the Alpha assortment version of Grimlock in robot mode and the same goes for this one.
This figure is made up of silver and black plastic. The front half of the torso is painted gold. A red Autobot symbol is painted onto the center of the chest. The waist/hip area is painted red with silver details. Finally, the robot eyes are painted red. I would have liked to see some black paint on the robot fists, but other than that I think he looks great as a small scale Grimlock figure.
There are seven points of articulation on this figure, not including the ability for the wings to swing back and out of the way. Most of the articulation points are ball joints and I am happy to report all the joints on my copy of this figure are nice and tight. Grimlock does not include any weapons, but if you have weapons with 5mm ports from other figures, this Grimlock figure can borrow them.
Transformation to Beast Mode:
- Rotate each forearm around.
- Push the lower legs together.
- Swing the back pack up.
- Swing the two "wings" together, moving the legs out of the way as needed.
- Swing the robot legs back and up to form the rear of the beast mode.
"Authentics" are meant to be simplified figures, so some elements of Grimlock's beast mode were streamlined to make this a cheaper figure to produce. The two main simplified sections are the arms and the tail. The beast mode arms are both sculpted as part of the chest panels instead of being separate parts. I could not blame you if you missed them since they are tiny T-Rex arms to begin with, but having them literally just being sculpted details on grey plastic makes them a tad harder to find. The tail is sculpted to look a lot like G1 Grimlock's tail, but the end is a shortened version of the tail on other Grimlock figures. While these two design sacrifices are not great, they do not completely wreck the aesthetics of the figure either.
The rest of this sculpt has many of the "Evergreen" design elements which blend G1 and modern day design elements. Perhaps the most obvious example of this is the head. The shape of the head is roughly the same as G1 Grimlock, but it is a bit more curved towards the front of the snout. Also, there are small spikes running along the middle of the head from the nose to the back. I like these features and appreciate how much this figure tries to pay homage to G1 Grimlock.
This mode mostly shows off silver plastic with black plastic on the back. Gold paint is used on the neck and red paint is used on the beast mode eyes. These are classic Grimlock colors and they look good.
There are four points of articulation in this mode: the legs. They can move at the hips and knees thanks to the arm articulation from the robot mode.
If you already have the Alpha version of this figure, there is really no point in getting this one unless you want it for its size (which makes for a good deskbot). The toy is fun to play with and the transform is simple but contains multiple steps. It is not some simple McDonalds toy. Recommended for those who want a smaller Grimlock to add to their collection.
- Good robot mode sculpt.
- Nice deco (given the price point).
- Simple multi-step transformation.
- Sculpting sacrifices may not agree with all fans.