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Series: Legends
Allegiance: Autobot
Categories: Leader Headmaster
Year: 2016

Robot Mode: Let’s get my one big beef with this figure out of the way first: It’s just one big figure, not a smaller figure putting on a trailer armor to become a bigger one. Which is interesting because the transformation into robot mode could easily have lent itself to the tractor being a separate piece that could, presumably, be made into a separate robot. But anyway, Super Ginrai is just one big robot. We shall have to accept that.

Leaving that issue behind, Super Ginrai looks fantastic in robot mode. He’s big, he’s beefy, he’s got shoulder cannons, and he can bend pretty well, too. He doesn’t suffer from too much kibble, either, those panels on his forearm being the worst of it. He comes with his familiar two black rifles, too, which naturally can combine into a single one with a seat for his Headmaster partner, too.

It’s not without weak points, though, as we come to Ginrai’s lower legs. They are basically made from the side panels of the truck’s trailer and can easily come apart when you touch them. It’s a not a big thing, but a somewhat sturdier way of clicking them together would have been appreciated. That’s about the only bad thing about the robot mode, though. Other than that: a great-looking, cool super robot mode.

Alternate Mode: Hardly surprising, Ginrai transforms into a truck. It’s the familiar red tractor with grey trailer and Ginrai’s many guns all have a place in this mode, too. The back of the trailer features an opening ramp and the interior is big enough for smaller Autobots in car mode (Deluxe-sized car Autobots don’t really fit, though). The tractor, meanwhile, can split open to unveil a seat for Ginrai’s Headmaster (the actual Ginrai). So while the truck mode doesn’t really offer anything new, it’s well designed and works as intended, no complaints.

Like all Leader-sized figures from the Titans Return / Legends series, Super Ginrai, too, has a base mode. Now the base mode of the original Super Ginrai / Powermaster Optimus Prime was pretty cool, definitely one of the better trailer-turned-base-modes from that time. This new base mode here, though... yeah, I’m not really sold. It’s more or less identical in layout to its G1 predecessor, but far less stable and not nearly as cool-looking. So the base mode is... there, I guess. I certainly don’t plan on transforming Ginrai into this mode again, though.

Partner: Super Ginrai comes with an unnamed Headmaster figure. Yeah, Headmaster, not Titan Master. Anyway, in fiction this tiny figure is, of course, the actual Ginrai, a human wearing a suit of armor. Ginrai transforms into a very Optimus-Prime-looking head that connects to Super Ginrai and is then completely hidden by a bigger Optimus-Prime-looking helmet. Actually if you don’t mind empty eye sockets, you can just leave the Headmaster aside and just use the helmet as Super Ginrai’s head. Anyway, Ginrai was painted to make it seem like there is a human face inside that helmet and in head mode he can easily connect with other Titans Return / Legends figures, giving them an Optimus Prime noggin’. So bottom line, an average Headmaster / Titan Master figure.

Remarks: While Powermaster Optimus Prime came out in the West and was seen in pretty much every comic book and TV ad of the time, the Japanese Masterforce series instead had Super Ginrai, a human guy who bonded with a non-living transector to become the leader of the Earth-bound Cybertrons (Autobots). The fact that said transector looked very much like Convoy / Optimus Prime was explained in an accompanying manga, which stated that it had originally been intended as a new body for the (at that point) deceased Convoy. Super Ginrai battled against Black ZarakOverlord, and Devil Z and eventually the transector gained sentience, leaving Ginrai behind to travel into space in order to appear in the follow-up series Victory.

History repeats now as the Hasbro Powermaster Optimus Prime figure from Titans Return is repurposed as Super Ginrai for Takara’s Legend series. Having seen the Hasbro variant in stores here, I much prefer the Super Ginrai version’s look and the fact that there will be a God Bomber figure for him to combine with (incompatible with Powermaster Prime, apparently) is but icing on the cake. So bottom line: a pretty good figure, some minor flaws, but if you’re gonna get it, get the Super Ginrai version, not the Powermaster. The extra cash is worth it.

Rating: B+
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