Power of the Primes Sludge Gallery and Review!
Shyly making his presence known in the Allspark Studios today is Cybertronian noncommittal introvert/extrovert, Sludge! He may be slow and not so clever, but will this calamity causer cause chaos or fit nicely on your shelf? Check out our review after the break to find out!
Sludge always seemed kinda dumb. He was seriously not intelligent in a way that made Grimlock seem like a genius long before “Grimlock’s New Brain”. Big, stupid, slow, and powerful, Sludge didn’t really impress me. My friend “Kurt” had Sludge, but he was always getting his slow, oversized worm looking butt kicked by Grimlock, who didn’t tolerate slackers on the team. I could go on, but I think you get my drift. I hated Sludge. I hated him with a rare passion for my age. I have since learned to hate him less, so let’s see if the new toy is worthy of my forgiveness.
Sludge Brontosaurus Mode
Sludge did not get any slimmer in the gap between G1 and POTP, but he did get a few updates in the new sculpt. He has gained quite a few lines across various parts of his body, breaking the surfaces up and adding a more “tech” looking detail about him. His hind legs are still very reminiscent of the original figure, but the front ones take a big departure, due to the way they become the robot arms. These legs have a bend in them at the “elbow”, still hide the robot fist, and connect via a ball joint. I almost wish they had found a way to use a form of ball joint on the hind legs, if for no reason other than parity. The shiny chrome that was formerly covered in transparent plastic on the neck and head have been replaced with a nice gold painted plastic, covered in transparent plastic. It still pulls off a similar effect, though I am hesitant to admit the gold does not look as nice as the chrome. I think it is because the “tech” details in the gold on the new figure are done in a straight-line style that I do not like. The original had more variety in the circuit details, and I think that the lack of that on the new figure is a detriment to it.
Sadly, there just isn’t much to do with this guy that wasn’t already done. Overall, the Brontosaurus mode is just a big, solid, underarticulated brute of a beast mode. I don’t think it is any more fun than I did as a child. I fully accept that I am in the minority on this one, and I assume your opinion is not going to be swayed too much by my undying hate for it. Good for you. 😉
Sludge Robot Mode
Sludge fares much better when it comes to robot mode. I may have hated the original toy, and I may have hated the toon character, but you have to admit that there is something nice about the old cartoon designs. That is basically what we get with POTP Sludge, and I think that because of it, I may hate him a little less now. This figure has great proportions. He looks heroic, athletic, and less…slow. Everything he was in beast mode is flipped, and it really makes for a fun figure. He is less top heavy than Snarl, which allows him to pose with greater stability. He has a nice nostalgia inspired face sculpt, and the cartoon look is really highlighted while giving the character a somewhat more intelligent appearance. The wings are just normal grey plastic, and are not covered in any paint, but they look great and do not break up the look of the character by drawing attention via vac-metal, so I count this as another plus.
There is only one negative I can find on a phenomenal robot mode, and that is the head/neck articulation. The head is on a mushroom joint, which means it can only rotate laterally. He can’t look up or down, even in limited fashion. This type of joint should NEVER be used as a head joint. EVER. To add insult to injury, not only is the head underarticulated, the mushroom joint on my Sludge came pre-stressed. I am already fearing a day when that magnificent face sculpt becomes permanently detached from the rest of his robotic glory. I should never have to fear this.
To sum it all up, Power of the Primes Sludge’s robot mode makes me love a figure of a character I hate. It’s just that good. Even the negative of the head cannot make me love his robot mode less, and he shall remain in robot mode on my shelf in perpetuity.
Sludge Combiner Limb Mode
If you go by the video game combined mode setup, Sludge forms the right leg of Volcanicus. Just like Snarl was a fitting leg mode for his bladed back plates, I think that having a foot/leg with the power to cause earthquakes is also appropriate. Volcanicus would using Sludge as a foot destroying weapon, slamming him down on his opponents’ podiatric appendages and crushing their robo-phalanges. Sludge works well as a leg, though the Brontosaurus head does look a little strange peeking out from the front. Like Snarl, I have not used Sludge as much as an arm, but the result is similar in function with a slight improvement. Sludge’s fist connector works fine, but I think I still prefer him as a leg. A leg he shall also stay.
I give Sludge a solid 7 out of 10. Sludge has a faithfully uninspiring Brontosaurus mode, balanced by a wonderfully articulated and proportioned robot mode. I think I can finally find a little love now for this character, since I can really enjoy the updated robot toy and ignore the Brontosaurus. I may not form Volcanicus much in the future, but I can see the value of having this figure in one’s collection. Pick him up at your favorite retailer now!
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