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Series: APC Toys
Allegiance: Predacon
Year: 2022

Prelude: Many people tend to forget that all the many amazing characters we saw in Beast Wars did not have beast modes before the series began, but rather adopted them simply to survive on ancient Earth. We have only seen relatively few of their pre-Beast-Wars versions so far, but one of them is Rampage aka Protoform X. Now APC Toys brings us a third party figure portraying the pre-beast-mode version of Beast Wars’ psychotic serial killer called Bossy Flame. Can he feel your pain? Can he help deepen it? Let’s say go!

Robot Mode: Bossy Flame is a repaint (with a new head and a few less accessories) of APC Dark Master, so this review will focus mostly on the differences. The idea to do a pre-beast Rampage by using the mold originally created for Prime Megatron is not a new one, really. In 2014 the Transformers Collectors Club released this figure first, based on Megatron’s First Edition figure. Much like that otherwise brilliant First Edition figure, though, a Deluxe-class toy is simply too small to portray someone like Rampage in my opinion.

Thankfully the APC version is much bigger, about the size of a large Voyager or small Ultra Class figure, and while it is clearly the same mold as Dark Master, it was given a new paintjob in Rampage’s red and orange colors (with some purple highlights) and an entirely new head. The paintjob is a good match to the original Beast Wars Rampage figure. A bit lighter in tone, maybe, and with less sculpted detail, but still a decent match. The two figures are also somewhat similar in overall size. The BW figure is shorter, but much broader.

As for the new head, well… you can somewhat see that it’s supposed to be the same guy, but there is still quite a bit of difference (see 22nd picture in gallery). The Collectors Club figure did a better job there, I must say. Still, it is recognizable as Rampage (if only just), so it works. Still, my major beef with this figure.

Otherwise Bossy Flame is the same excellent figure that Dark Master was. He foregoes the Dark Saber and its holder, but he has got the arm cannon (which he can also hold in hand to better emulate BW Rampage’s weapon) and the arm blades, too. The plastic still feels a bit cheap when compared to other third party figures, but it doesn’t impact either the transformation or the stability. So bottom line: a decent repaint of a great robot. Now if they had just sculpted a better head…

Alternate Mode: The original Beast Wars Rampage transformed into a King Crab and a tank (that kind of looked like a King Crab). Bossy Flame, of course, has the same alternate mode as Dark Master, meaning he turns into a pretty cool looking space jet. Now, seeing as the TV series never gave any clue what Protoform X transformed into before he arrived on Earth, we can only go by the Beast Wars Uprising story (see below) where he also became a space jet, so it’s canon (more or less). The space jet looks great in these colors, too, and with the way the nose is designed, it does have something beast-like to it, too. Still, nothing really new I can write here. Pretty much the exact same space jet mode as Dark Master, just in red, orange, and purple.

Remarks: Hannibal Lecter never came closer to having a Transformers equivalent than Beast Wars’ Protoform X aka Rampage. When Maximal scientists attempted to replicate the immortal spark of the Decepticon Starscream, they created a powerful psychotic monster. Protoform X slaughtered his way across space before he was stopped by Depth Charge. He resurfaced on ancient Earth under the command of Predacon Leader Megatron before finally being destroyed by being stabbed through the spark with pure Energon.

It wasn’t until the Beast Wars Uprising story from the TF Collectors Club that we got a toy of Rampage’s pre-Beast Wars look, a retool of Transformers Prime Megatron. So it was only natural, I guess, that APC Toys would reuse their unofficial version of Prime Megatron as Rampage. And Bossy Flame is one of the weirdest names I have ever seen in the Transformers franchise, just saying.

At the end of the day Bossy Flame is nothing more and nothing less than a repaint of the excellent Dark Master figure. The new head is a bit of a disappointment, but I guess you can consider the notion that Protoform X changed his own look considerably between being taken down by Depth Charge and being reformatted on ancient Earth. So while this figure does not do as great a job at portraying the character it is based on as Dark Master did, it’s still quite good and worth a look for Beast Wars fans. It’s not like we have a whole lot of Protoform X / Rampage figures to choose from, after all. You hearing this, Hasbro?

Rating: B
Toy DB Link

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