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Series: Animated
Allegiance: Decepticon
Categories: Voyager
Function: Air Warrior Supreme
Year: 2008

Power is its own justification!
No one really likes Starscream, not even the other Decepticons. Who can blame them though? He'll do whatever it takes to gain control of the Decepticons, even going so far as trying to destroy his commander, Megatron. Of course, he's also nearly as powerful as Megatron, and just as sneaky. He's the fastest flier there is, and even Optimus Prime would have a hard time beating him in a fight. He's the best there is at what he does. Even so he sometimes overrates himself, and that's why he's still second in command.

My Review:

Robot Mode: Respect the chin! Starscream''s got chin! Lots of chin! That''s pretty much the first thing that comes to mind when looking at this newest version of the classic back-stabbing would-be Decepticon leader. He''s got a humongous chin. The likeness to his cartoon counterpart is very good, not just because of the chin, but overall. I like his head a lot. It''s got that devious grin on it that makes us all love ''Screamer. And a huge chin, too.

Colour-wise Starscream looks pretty good, even though he more closely resembles Thundercracker rather than his own previous incarnations. In fact Movie Thundercracker and ''Screamer might as well have been separated at birth, they look so similar. Still, the colours look good and fit Starscream well. Starscream is very tall and slender and his multiple joints give him good posability. There are some problems here, though. The hip joints are very stiff, at least on my version, while the thighs are liable to pop off if you twist too hard. I also had some problems with the arms popping off, but again, that might just be my version.

Starscream''s got great hands, though. Each finger is individually sculpted and sharpened into a claw. The thumb can move separately. This enables Starscream to hold stuff like the Matrix or the AllSpark without any problems. It also makes triumphant poses very cool. Weapon-wise Starscream has two missile launchers on his arms, which can flip upward when he needs to have his hands free. By pushing back his missile launchers you can also unfold two smaller gun barrels from his forearms.

Overall this is a very nice version of a classic fan favourite character. The joints could be a bit better, I suppose, but that''s really a minor thing, at least for someone like me who doesn''t intend to actually play with the figure, but rather pose it in his display case. So thumbs up for the robot mode.

Alternate Mode: Starscream transforms into a futuristic-looking fighter jet. I don''t think this fighter is modelled after any existing model, seeing as Animated is supposed to play several decades in the future. Look-wise the fighter reminds me most of Armada Starscream (or Armada Thundercracker, rather, because of the colours).

The fighter features pretty much everything you can ask for on a jet Transformer. There is a fully-functional landing gear, the rear fins fold up, and Starscream''s missile launchers from his robot mode can flip forward to give him lots of firepower. The only downside is that you can''t leave the missiles in when you flip the launchers backwards. Well, you can leave them in, of course, but that looks pretty stupid because then the missiles stick up from his rear. So best to leave them out when the jet isn''t in attack mode.

Overall, a very nicely made jet. The only slight problem is getting there, as it takes some practice to get the arms and legs folded and clicked-together in the right way. Transform him back and forth a few times, though, and you''ve got it down.

Remarks: Was there any doubt that there''d be a Starscream in Animated? Please! The last time we had a series without ''Screamer in it was RID and that pretty much sucked, so there. In the series Starscream was up to his old tricks again right from the start, trying to blow Megatron to kingdom come and take over. Unlike in G1, though, things went critical between the two rivals right from the start, there was no pussyfooting around. And now that Starscream appears to be immortal thanks to a fragment of the AllSpark, you just now it''ll only be a matter of time until he makes a major play for the Decepticon throne.

As a figure Starscream is pretty good, but for some reason I can''t really call him very good. Might be the thing with the joints, might simply be the fact that he''s just not extraordinary enough for me. I mean, he''s Starscream, yeah! But that''s pretty much all he is. The figure could have used a little something extra. Not sure what, but it''s not there. Don''t ask me to explain, it''s a gut thing. So bottom line, a good figure, definitely recommended to all ''Screamer fans, but not the best figure among the Animated line.


And for a second opinion the review by Tobias H:

Prelude: Some things are simply necessary. Every human needs air to breathe, every fish needs water to swim, every tree needs earth to grow in... and every Transformers series needs a Starscream!

Transformers Animated is no exception. Starscream was introduced back in the pilot episode where, with one little gesture, he told you everything you need to know about his character: He gave Megatron a little 'present', leafing to a rather 'explosive' surprise. At the end of the pilot he returns for a second impression and very nearly destroys all the Autobots all by his lonesome and without help. Only sheer chance saw him defeated.

Animated Starscream is powerful and devious and he is guided by a sense of malicious egotism that's stronger than ever. I think we can call him an excellent homage to his G1 alter ego.

Starscream made a very strong impression in the cartoon, but how about the action figure? Let's take a look at it.

Robot Mode: "My God, you could hold a ski tournament on that chin." That was pretty much my first thought when I saw the first pictures of Animated Starscream. At first the prospect of getting a 'Chin Starscream' instead of a 'King Starscream' disappointed me, but I got used to it with time.

When I saw the first episode of the cartoon I found that Starscream's strangly shaped head was a pretty good fit for his character. And now, holding the figure in hand, I really like that face with the long chin, the broad grin and the evil eyes. I'd go as far as to say that no other Starscream figure managed to capture the character of this villain as well as this one has done.

I also read a lot of initial complaints about the 'new' colour scheme. Personally I can't really understand that. Starscream is mainly grey and red, which fits the figure and helps along the 'Animated Look', which characterises this series. So I consider that one a plus, not a downside.

What else can I say about Starscream? He seems very tall because his body is rather thin and his limbs very long. This, too, fits nicely with the character. Added to that is that Starscream, like most Animated figures apparently, is highly posable. Apart from the usual joints he features fully-posable feet, which gives him a solid footing in just about every pose.

Even better than his feet are his hands, though. You can move Starscream's thumb and individual fingers separately. This gives the figure a very 'animated' look, so to speak. Animated Starscream is a lot more dynamic than many of his predecessors. So I'm fully satisfied on this front.

Looking at his weapons, Animated Starscream, much like his predecessor G1 Starscream features two arm-mounted lasers. The things can be launched as missiles and look pretty good that way, too. One special feature is that you can flip the cannons back, so when Starscream isn't busy shooting Autobots or trying to ursurp Megatron, he can put the guns away. It's great because that way the guns aren't always in the way if you want to make use of the figure's great hands.

One thing I wanted to mention in closing. Starscream does appear somewhat shaky on first glance. Especially his torso seems a little loose, rather like the G1 figure's. I'm pretty sure that's intentional, though, because I've noticed that this allows the figure to more or less balance itself somewhat, especially in more extreme poses. Plus, you only really noticed during the transformation. So I don't consider this a minus, just a peculiarity of this figure.

So in the end I can only say that I consider Starscream's robot mode to be as great as any robot mode can possibly be. I'm amazed.

Alternate Mode: Starscream's alternate mode is, what else could it be, a jet. In this case it's a fictious, futuristic model, which manages to resemble several different incarnations of the power-hungry Decepticon warrior. There is resemblance to G1 Starscream, mostly in the general shape and the two tail fins. There's also Armada Starscream, who provided the forward-sweeping wings. So all in all a very pleasing look to this airplane.

What I really like is the three-point landing gear, which can be extended and retracted as needed. Sadly that's not a given among jet Transformers. I just want to remind people of Movie Starscream.

Another positive detail about this jet mode is the nice size of the toy. You can see a lot of details and the jet fits nicely into your hand. For those wishing to play with it, I think it offers lots and lots of play value, because Starscream is neither too big nor too small.

There isn't really much more I can say here. One little thing that is definitely worth mentioning, though: Starscream's arm cannons, which are a nice feature in robot mode, are also present in this mode, of course. They are situated beneath the jet and can be launched, of course. The two projectiles then function as belly-mounted missiles. A nice gimmick. If you don't want the weapons in launching position, you can just fold them back. This causes them to sit between the engines. This position looks better, though, if you remove the missiles, because otherwise they extend past the engines and out the back of the jet, which just looks weird.

So bottom line, no cause for complaints in this mode, either. The jetmode offers a lot of play value and looks damn good, too.

Remarks: Animated Starscream has big shoes to fill. Apart from Optimus Prime and Megatron Starscream is pretty much the most iconic figure in the ever-expanding Transformers universe. There have been many, many different incarnations of him, many of whom were among the best figures of their respective series. So Animated Starscream had a lot of expectations heaped upon him.

As far as my expectations are concerned, though, he fulfilled them completely. The robot mode looks great and is highly posable. Combined with his arm cannon gimmick I really can't find any reason for complaint. Starscream's character was poured into toy form better than ever before.

The jet mode, too, gives a great showing. Not only does this toy offers lots of play value, it also looks great and represents a homage to several past incarnations of one of the Transformers universe's most favourite characters.

So what else can I say but "LONG LIVE CHIN STARSCREAM!"

Rating: He gets a solid A.


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