I had been toying with the idea of picking up this set for a very long time, and finally pulled the trigger:
For those of you who don’t know, the Encore series are G1 re-issues from Takara, typically with improved or added detail/paint apps. # 10, is no different. A re-release of a handful of the G1 mini-bots, this set includes (from left to right) Swerve, Pipes, Bumblebee, Tailgate and Outback.
The set is actually titled “Bumble and Minibots” – Bumble is ‘Bee’s Japanese name. He gets center billing because of all the figures, Bee has the best changes applied (though that’s saying something) –
Not only does he get his Cartoon Accurate head sculpt, but blue paint has been added to his eyes, his Autobot Sigil is tampographed on his chest, his headlights, tail lights and bumpers have all been painted as well. If you grew up with G1 Bumble Bee (before he became a Wal-mart shelf filler), this is the one to have.
The other main reason I wanted this set is because it has Swerve and Tailgate, who have also received much needed face detailing. I mean, look at them, they look awesome! These two little obscure Autobots have actually been taking a very central role in IDW’s ongoing More Than Meets the Eye series.
I’ve become a big fan of Swerve because of this series. He’s got the appeal of Swindle but without being a back alley criminal. He’s even opened a bar!
Pipes has shown up in a few issues of MTMTE as well, and his G1 reissue looks WAY better with that read visor colored in. I don’t know what it is about ‘Bots with visors, but I sure like them a lot.
Outback is just fugly. I wish I could like him more, but I don’t. I hate him, lol. His transformation is awkward, his legs are 4 times longer than his body, he’s just an ugly little robot. But that face being painted helps a little. Just a little though.
Anyone who grew up in the 80s had at least one of these guys. Each one has at least 1 re-deco (Off the top of my head, I think we’ve got: Brawn (technically Outback is Brawns redeco) – Huffer, Cliffjumper & Hubcap, Gears and Windcharger. They were easy to transform, commonly available and a great way to bolster an army of Autobots for under 4 bucks. I still have my original Beachcomber that my Dad bought me at Toys R Us, but he’s seen better days.
If you want your own set, you can get them here. Personally, I’m hoping they do another round of these guys, maybe in G2 colors or the non-redecos (Cosmos, Beachcomber, Seaspray, Wheelie, etc..) but we’ll see.
Tomorrow – Asia Exclusive Legends Hoist and Motormaster should be arriving at my door, so I’ll post on them.
Quick edit: Lots of stuff still up for sale on ebay.
Till all are one –