Tuesday, February 1, 2022

Transformers - ROAD RAGE!

Transformers: Kingdom - Road Rage (Target Red Card Exc) - Hasbro 2021

Road Rage is a character with a pretty fantastic backstory. The male Transformer Tracks was introduced in 1985 as a blue redeco of a red Chevrolet Stingray Diaclone toy from Japan. The art on the Transformers packaging in 1985 was made using early Diaclone models, so a mysterious illustration of a red Tracks was a point of curiosity for early collectors. Also, a European release of Tracks was simply a repackaged Diaclone toy, so a red Tracks figure in Transformers packaging exists as a foreign color swap oddity (Like Glenda or Canary Ann in G.I.Joe). But then in 2002, eHobby released an exclusive redeco of Tracks in the original Diaclone colors as a new female character, Road Rage. This makes her one of the rare G1 characters that was created in "modern" times and retroactively made part of the G1 universe.  It reminds me of random background characters from MOTU artwork that have been given life and backstory in the Classics line (Like Sherrilyn, Battleground Teela, and hopefully Sultra in Origins). 


Road Rage has a great personality gimmick. In robot form, she is calm, reasonable, and logical. But there is a malfunction in her vehicle form's navigation component that makes her wild, dangerous, and unpredictable when driving - living up to her namesake. Her character was greatly expanded upon in IDW's Transformers comics starting in 2019. She works interchangeably as a bodyguard or bounty hunter depending on the story. Despite being a relatively new character, she's received a decent amount of representation in plastic. This is because she can be an easy recolor of a staple character, Tracks. It's the same reason we see so many Slipstream figures. This Kingdom Road Rage is a repaint of Kingdom Tracks with a new head. Let's check her out below!








The only thing I don't like about this figure is her legs. They seem too short and blocky for a female figure. I was impressed that her Masterpiece figure retooled her legs and pelvis to give her a more feminine appearance, and I wish this figure had received the same treatment. Meanwhile there is a Cyberverse Skullcruncher on the shelves right now that has very androgynous legs that would look great on this figure. I almost want to buy one and see if a swap is possible.























Once again, my poor transforming skills shock me. I can't figure out how to get this car any better than this dismal form without breaking it in half. And I swear in any other facet of life, I have excellent spatial relation and mechanical skills. I've made my own furniture from scratch. I fixed my own furnace two weeks ago. I once disassembled and reassembled a clothes dryer to install a new ventilation system. There is no reason a toy rated age 8+ should be the challenge that I fail. But every - damn - time.






Here is the packaging artwork from 1985 that sparked the curiosity about a "red Tracks."


















Time for some Comparison Pics!


Here is Road Rage next to the Deluxe Class Strongarm from 2014. Their bulky body frames remind me of each other. I should have taken a picture of her with Nautica since those two were always a pair in the comics.






Cheers!





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