WFC-E10 Grapple Gallery and Quick Review!
Building works of art in the Allspark Studio today is WFC Earthrise Grapple! Will he continue to build with precision and grace, or watch with horror as your Decepticons destroy his work in battle? Tune in after the break to find out!
On the heels of the WFC Starscream Gallery I posted earlier this week, we now have a chance to review WFC Grapple! Grapple is one of those characters that always looked neat on screen (and as a toy) but was never a standout character to me. I had to read his TFWiki article to even remember what he did during the original cartoon. I was kind of surprised to be reminded of how much of a doofus he was. That episode with the Solar Power Tower and the Constructicons is just embarrassing.
Still, his design is classic Sunbow, and what is not to love about his looks? Pair that with the awesome Diaclone toy design and it makes up for all of his goofiness on the G1 show. We have not had many iterations of Grapple over the years, so let’s see how this new version compares to the G1 toy and the Reveal the Shield figure.
This sure is a spot-on homage to the Diaclone mold. Almost every detail boldly calls back to the original vehicle mode. The orange is a little darker than the Commemorative Series reissue, but not so much that it is off putting. There is some added real-life detail to the sides of the vehicle, and the arms are slightly more integrated into this mode. I find myself a little disappointed that the cabin of the vehicle cannot rotate forward like the original, but considering the change in how the arms are connected on this version, I can’t hold it against the mold.
Comparing this vehicle mold to the RtS mold makes me love it even more and question my previous affinity for the RTS version. While the RTS mold works better in scale with WFC Hoist, it just looks way too big. Add to that some issues I have always had with some of the panels in transformation and I am definitely ready to let that version retire.
You know what to expect here. The figure’s transformation takes some heavy cues from the G1 version. The head assembly and legs are the closest to the original figure, and the arms follow through in the spirit of the G1 transformation while improving on the design. WFC Grapple has phenomenal articulation minus one point: the neck. His head is on a mushroom joint instead of a ball joint. sigh Close enough to perfect was good enough, I guess.
At any rate, WFC Grapple can get into some great action poses. He balances well enough that you can even hold a full-size Constructicon above him with his claw connector on the crane arm. Impressive.
The only advantage that the RtS version has over this one is that it came with the darker head based off of the G1 toy. Having a swappable set of heads for Earthrise Grapple would have been icing on the cake. Beyond that, there is no competition between the WFC mold and the RtS mold. WFC Grapple is cartoon proportionate, transforms easily, and has no parts that randomly pop off. RtS Grapple is too big and too broad, does not have the classic “bucket” behind his head, has panels that do not move without some force being applied, and his arms pop out just above the biceps constantly. I kind of hate that toy now.
As I said before, there is no competition between versions of Grapple in the battle for space on your shelf.
This is the definitive Grapple, and there likely will not be a better designed, more show/toy accurate amalgamation ever created. Seek him out now at Target stores near you!