Earthrise WFC-E23 Doubledealer Gallery and Review!

All paid up and ready for battle in the Allspark studio today is traitorous backstabber, Doubledealer!  Will he only be loyal to the highest bidder on your shelf or will he set up a time share so everyone can enjoy?  Tune in after the break to find out!

I was solidly in 6th grade by the time Hasbro got around to making Doubledealer.  At that time, toys were super uncool.  I remember seeing a few Transformers and really wanting them, but “toys were for little kids”, and alas, at the age of 12, I was no longer a little kid (lol).

As I grew back into the fandom as a young adult, I started to learn about some of the figures and characters I had missed.  Doubledealer always seemed like a fun, “new” take on the Autobot/Decepticon dynamic, so I really wanted to get one.  Unfortunately, my experience with vintage toys was that they were either cheap and beat up or clean and super expensive.  I was a young teacher, and my salary would not allow for such indulgence, so I never bought the G1 figure.

Cut to 2014, and we got the first Generations Doubledealer out of the Blitzwing mold.  It was beautiful, but the mold’s shoulders really bothered me, and of course, he could not really swap factions, nor did he have any Powermasters (booooooo!).  Due to those factors he ended up getting boxed during one of our moves and remains in storage to this day.  That means no comparison shots, but I doubt you’d really need them.

The new WFC-Earthrise Doubledealer hits all the stops.  He fulfills the “triple-changing, missile carrier, robot/bird” categories.  He has a chest compartment where you can place either of his two Powermaster cassette companions at any given time, and I applaud TakaraTomy and Hasbro for making sure they got as many of the details right as they could.

Robot Bird Mode
The bird mode, which looks a lot like a vulture to me, does not have a ton of articulation, but that is OK.  The wings can flap up and down at the shoulders, flare out at the mid-point of the wing, and the tips can bend downward.  The bird head also has some limited poseability, along with the feet.

The sculpt really brings this mode to life, however.  It possesses a sinister expression.  The blood-red curved beak and teeth on a face frame dark, dead eyes.  The artillery, radar, and machine gun really drive home the “avian of death” look.  I would hate to see this guy flying behind me in the desert.

Both cassettes store well here, as you can place Knok in the compartment and Skar, who is the exact same shade of purple used on Doubledealer, blends well when placed in the space between the wings.

Missile Carrier Mode
This here is a nicely on spot update of the original carrier mode.  The missile itself lays flat or can be posed in “ready to launch” mode.

Skar can be stored in the compartment while Knok mans the launch of the missile, or he can be stored on the back of the ramp if you flip it over.  I can’t think of any complaints for this mode, other than the bird wings coming so close to ground.

Robot Mode
Following the “G1 with knees” style we have all come to know and love, Doubledealer is fairly stable in robot mode. The joints on mine are little looser than I would like, but nowhere near the floppy mess many people have reported.  Bullet dodged.

He has the following articulation:

  • “ankle tilts”
  • Knee ratchets
  • Thigh swivels
  • Ratcheted hips with swivels
  • Waist swivel
  • Shoulders with swivels on two planes for forward and outward movement
  • Double-jointed elbows, wrist swivels
  • Severely limited range neck ball-joint (still a recurring design problem…*sigh*)

The rocket from the vehicle mode becomes a smaller shoulder-mounted rocket and a rifle.  His radar pod and machine gun can mount on his shoulders, and the missile pods attach to the sides of his legs.  The ramp and stabilizer legs attach to the back of the robot mode, and to change faction, there are panels connected to his shoulders that flip up and down to reveal his current allegiance.

Since my figure is better off in the QC/part variance department, I have very few issues posing my Doubledealer, and he looks great in several action stances.  That being said, the thigh swivels on my figure and the ankle tilts make a larger range of poses impossible.  If these issues are paired with other reported problems of arms so loose they cannot hold up the rifle, then I would understand the frustration I have seen by some fans online.  There is also an issue with the knees being hard to transform correctly in bird and carrier mode, only adding to the difficulty.

Final Thoughts
Doubledealer gets 7.5 faction betrayals out of 10!  He is a greatly faithful update of the original and holds a significant amount of fun in the play value provided, but the issues with quality control and tolerance variance on many weight bearing parts in robot mode make him a coin toss when it comes to overall satisfaction of purchase.  While I think this is a toy you should hunt down, and it is a toy both young and adult fans will enjoy, you may have to add something to the joints post-purchase to improve articulation and really get the full value of the figure.

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