WFC Earthrise E-6 Wheeljack Gallery and Review!

Inventing new weapons and gadgets today in the Allspark Studio is Autobot mad scientist Wheeljack!  Is he really most adept at driving in car mode, or is he secretly great at driving that Cybertronian sized race car that no one has ever seen?  Tune in after the break to find out!

Man, I wanted Wheeljack so bad as a kid.  He was a mad scientist, I wanted to be a bad scientist.  He got to play with dinosaurs, I wanted to play with dinosaurs.  On top of it all, he was a cool racecar with a tough sounding voice.  Also, my brother got him the same Christmas I got Perceptor, and while I was elated to get a Transformer microscope, I wanted BOTH.  Queue a few years of childhood jealousy and me constantly sneaking Wheeljack out to hang with Perceptor.  😀

None of the Wheeljack figures we have had in the past really scratched my itch to get G1 Wheeljack.  Alternators (a line I am not a fan of) gave us a WJ with an American car mode in the wrong colors.  The United/Generations mold nailed the colors, but the proportions were off and that limited the poseability.  Combiner Wars/Unite Warriors got us the closest yet to nailing Classic Wheeljack, which is funny, considering that mold started as Combiner Wars Breakdown.  While the Masterpiece Wheeljack is the best G1 Wheeljack to date, not everyone can afford to collect the MP line, so a solid “CHUG” update was still needed.

Does the WFC Earthrise Wheeljack make the grade?  Let’s take a look!
Car Mode
Earthrise Wheeljack’s car mode takes a lot of cues from the G1 Lancia Stratos without being so close that Hasbro and Takara have to pay licensing fees.  The basic shape, the cockpit, the grill, colors and branding (style only) are carried over and then made something unique to the Earthrise mold.  I can definitely appreciate what they did here, and I love the flat sleekness of this mold as its own thing, but it does not fully hit the mark on really looking like Wheeljack.  I think the flatness of the car is nice but ultimately takes away from it really pulling off the classic Wheeljack look.

Wheeljack’s branding/advertising is also reimagined.  Characters like Aerobolt, Swerve and Ricochet are referenced.  Locations are mentioned as well, such as Iacon, Praxus, and Velocitron.  Wheeljack’s racing numbers have been changed here again, from 539 to 638.  Again, it’s not the G1 branding, which likely would have incurred licensing fees.

Even so, this is a great reimaging, so I will take that for what it is.  I still like this figure A LOT.  EA Wheeljack has great car mode that is nice to look at and will be fun for kids to play with.

Robot Mode
Getting EA Wheeljack into robot mode is also fun.  It has a decent amount of complexity without being impossible.  I won’t break down all the steps here, but it is another case of taking cues from the G1 figure and then making it something new at the same time.

Once you get him transformed, you will see how great he is.  The articulation is top notch, he balances well, and his shoulders give off the strongest vibe of “MP-Lite” due to the similarity of design the molds share here.  EA Wheeljack’s design again takes some classic cues with the canopy as a chest, the G1 head, and his spoiler “wingtips” that poke out from the back, giving you a decent G1 Wheeljack.

Why do I say decent and not phenomenal?  The spoiler tips are the wrong color, the leg markings are a little plain, and the base white is…not white.  Honestly, had they given Wheeljack the same shade of white that Walgreen’s Ratchet was given, it would have bumped him up in my opinion significantly.

Pre-yellowed plastic is never a good thing, and I think I end up preferring United Wheeljack’s robot mode to that of EA Wheeljack, simply because it nails the cartoon shape and colors way better.  Two other areas of concern are that the head has limited range of motion for a ball-jointed piece and the gun/missile launcher is a bit puny.

Final Thoughts
None of this is not to say that EA Wheeljack is a bad toy.  The articulation is great, the poseability is better than that of most figures, and he does give off the same “masterpiece at normal retail prices” that so many of the WFC figures have had as of late.  He is fun in both modes and looks really good in both modes.  He is not the perfect update to G1 Wheeljack for a few reasons, and yet I cannot find any real reasons to dislike the toy.

Should there be a chance to get another version of this mold with whiter white, I think I would place it on a scale of 98/100 Energon Cubes.  As is, I’d say it’s more 90/100, so Earthrise Wheeljack still comes highly recommended.  Add him to your Autobot Science Brigade NOW!