October 29th, 2009


He was responsible for the requisite Fantastic Voyage plot.

Shortpacked!: Happily ever after!

I went to the trouble of designing a full-body character model for Jason to use in tonight's and yesterday's strips, but then he had to go and do only waist-up appearances!  That dirty Brit!  Always giving me trouble.  Ah well.  Enjoy his control art.

(Jason, in case you haven't guessed or didn't already know, is one of my older characters from my previous comic strip series.  He made his first appearance way back in Roomies! on November 2, 1998, which I am just realizing as I type this was almost exactly ten eleven years ago.  Holy crap.   Should I plug Roomies! Book 1, in which that story appears?  I probably should.)

I talked about the Insecticons a few days ago because I'd picked up their Toys"R"Us-exclusive reissue set, but a reissue of Generation 1 Perceptor is part of that assortment as well.  I was kinda lukewarm on him, but I ended up going back to the store and getting him anyway.  $35 is a hard price to beat for these old guys!  I'm serious.

Perceptor was actually one of my Christmas gifts when I was a kid!  I totally had him.  My old one's broke to hell and missing all of his accessories, so it's nice to have a minty replacement.  The microscope barrel and the mirror and the chest/tray were snapped off long ago, so my childhood one (which is probably buried in a bin in the attic somewhere) isn't terribly compelling.  That's like all the parts that make him a toy. 

See, he's a working microscope.  You can look into the scope and see things bigger out the other end!  Not by a lot, but enough to make him interesting.  So far I have stared at the file end of my nail clippers.  I've tried adjusting the view with the little knob, which is functional, but it doesn't sharpen enough to get a crisp view of anything.  On the other hand, I was never very good at using a microscope in science class, so maybe it's just me.

As you can probably tell from the images, the robot mode is really favored over the other two modes.  The microscope and the tank mode are basically robot parts with a scope added.  And, hey, due to his transformation, he's got an unbelievable amount of articulation for a toy from his era.  His shoulders rotate and his elbows bend, and plus his shins rotate and bend at the knee!  (Now that I think about it, I could have gotten a more dynamic pose from him up there just by rotating his legs out a bit.  I have failed.)  What it comes down to is, if you like big boxy robots who look like they're made out of boxes, he's your Transformer. 

I was surprised to learn from the instructions that you're supposed to remove the knobs on his wrists and set them aside for his tank mode.  Hooray?  I mean, you just take them off and set them aside.  That's kind of weird.  It's not like it makes him look any more like a tank.  It just gives you more stuff to lose.  (They are standard 5mm pegholes, so you could mount other guns there if you wanted.)  Speaking of stuff to lose, he comes with three missiles!  And they don't lock in!  So, yeah, I'm either going to pack away the non-functioning missile-launching gun and its missiles with the box or I'm going to immediately lose these.  

In a weird twist that I'm not sure how I feel about, all of Perceptor's stickers are factory-applied.  All of them!  When you pick one up in the store, make sure you get one with the Autobot symbol on his stomach oriented as straight as possible.  Otherwise, they're put on very cleanly and very straight.  Much better than I'd manage.  But sometimes putting them on is fun!  I dunno.  I have a love/hate relationship with stickers.

Y'know, I was going to try to pose Perceptor with Punching Batman, and use some creative Photoshop magic to make them the same scale (with the microscope being in scale with Batman), but then Halloween Trick or Treating happened and then The Office aired and then Jeff Dunham ruined 30 Rock forever, and I ran out of time.  Oh well! 

We'll always have The Riddler.  And Paris.  And Batman beating up The Riddler in Paris.

Jeff Dunham needs to be shot.  Out of a cannon.  Into a firing range.