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One nice thing about the fact that I have yet to review the Aerialbots is that this particular review doesn’t feel as repetitive as it might otherwise. After all, Blades is essentially the same exact figure as Alpha Bravo, but with a new head. Being a fan of G.I. Joe like I am, I’ve grown accustomed to this formula for bringing new characters to the table, and it works well here. I think it also helps that I’m not so attached to the vintage Transformers world that seeing several characters with the same Alt mode bugs me at all.
Like Alpha Bravo, Blades is a great looking helicopter in his alternate vehicle mode, an aircraft that in reality is a lot larger than his vehicular brothers, but considering the scale challenges that have existed in Transformers since the beginning, I suspect most of us are over issues like this by now.
The color scheme is great, a very nice red and white combination that is striking and makes great sense for a rescue craft. The blades spin freely on top of the helicopter, and the sleek design manages to conceal the majority of robot parts nicely.
Most, but not all. The missile pods on the side are essentially Blades’ arms tacked into each side, and it looks like it. For that matter, one must wonder why a rescue helicopter might have racks of missiles anyway, but again, these are Transformers, and are meant to represent Earth vehicles in their most basic elements. They still need to be armed to fight the Decepticons in both modes, I suppose. Speaking of which, the accessories Blades comes with can plug into various places in vehicle mode and robot mode both, adding some nice armament to the character.
Transformation from vehicle to robot is relatively straight forward, with the front fuselage breaking apart into legs, the arms separating and the helicopter tail coming up and back against the figure’s spine. Blades, like his Aerialbot brother, manages both modes very nicely, and has a considerable amount of great articulation in figure mode. Ball joint hips, shoulders and neck add some great range of motion, and he has very flexible knee and elbow joints to boot. A swivel waist is nicely concealed and very functional as well.
Blades’ new head sculpt is a terrific representation of the character, and the color breaks look really nice in both modes.
Yes, Blades is just a repaint of Alpha Bravo with a new head, but as I said, this doesn’t bother me. Heck, the upcoming Vortex from the Combaticons doesn’t even get a new head (though Alpha Bravo’s head is obviously a Vortex inspired one anyway). I think it’s kind of cool to actually have these Combiner characters who bare resemblance to each other, and when the toy itself is fun, that certainly helps.
Combiner Wars Blades
A fast response rescue copter and sleek warrior robot, Blades provides the critical air support for his Protectobots brothers! Whether unleashing rockets from his vehicle mode, or taking down Decepticons in robot mode, Blades is a very fun figure, even as a repaint of Alpha Bravo.