Transformers Barricade
Transformers Barricade
Transformers Barricade
Transformers Barricade

After much fan speculation, Barricade - having uniquely survived the first film and skipped the second - broke cover in Dark of the Moon, getting to execute Que before being taken down by some NEST snipers. This clashed somewhat with IDW's hilarious attempts to build him up as some sort of super-intelligent rogue Decepticon in their comics, instead revealing him to be the sort of cannon fodder real people knew he was from the start.

However his return to the big screen was enough to secure him a new Deluxe figure for the Dark of the Moon toyline. The original mould had been released with some minor tweaks for the Revenge of the Fallen line (annoyingly dropping some of the paint applications added for the Premium version) while a Human Alliance figure (with Frenzy as the driver) had also come out in the interim. Having some reservations about the original figure, it made my short list of wanted Dark of the Moon figures despite the absence of Frenzy.


Barricade retains the Police Saleen Mustang alternate mode in a near-identical colour scheme (the spoiler is white, a change taken from the prop vehicle). Once again it omits some of the details from the Premium version - notably the 9-1-1 graphic - which is a shame. It also continues the window problem with the windscreen and door windows transparent but the rear windows still solid black - a shame, if perhaps unavoidable. However as the new mould means a bunch of robot parts now fill the inside of the car, maybe all-opaque painted windows would have been a good choice.

The big problems with Barricade sadly are endemic of the Dark of the Moon line. The worst one is that Barricade is small - visibly smaller than the 2007 mould. It's probably only a reduction of 10-15% in size but it's noticeable next to any Deluxe car from the first two film lines, except maybe the '74 Camaro Bumblebee. The other is the MechTech weapon - MechTech's a great idea, good play value for kids and some of the weapons are neat. However, Barricade's is a great big block that just sort of sits there on top of the vehicle. It's so ugly and ill-chosen I threw it in a box somewhere almost straight away, hence its' absence from the pictures.


The transformation of the new mould is much changed. Most parts end up in roughly the same place (Barricade's CG model remained the same) with the only real changes to the layout being that the rear end of the car end up behind the thighs rather than on the back of the feet and the sides of the car end up facing a different direction, allowing the doors to display the same way as on film. However, the sequence is much more complicated (getting the legs to slot in perfectly when returning to Mustang mode can be tricky) which isn't entirely a bad thing. It feels more like a live-action Movie figure rather than a rogue Unicron Trilogy mould as the first version did.

This extends to a robot mode relatively free of big chunks of vehicle mode, though the chest still doesn't deform - there's a flip-over grille to add to the look, but it doesn't even split in half like the first version did. On the upside, at least this means there isn't a gaping hole around the neck. A deliberate attempt has been made to make Barricade more colourful. Whereas the 2007 version was all black (and a little bit of clear) plastic with some painted parts, this one introduces white and grey to the mix. The white waist piece is actually a little distracting and seems to have been introduced largely to break up the black, but the figure generally looks a lot better. Sadly in robot mode it's a good inch shorter than the 2007 version, something exacerbated by Barricade's hunchbacked gait. The articulation is excellent, including a waist joint, proper hands and a moving neck, but the toy is still quite top-heavy. I'm not sure if I had my usual luck with QC but the figure's ankles are rather loose and he's prone to toppling. I didn't even bother attaching the MechTech weapon to this mode - I'd be surprised if it helped with his balance problems.


On its' own merit this is a better figure than the first Barricade - the transformation and robot mode are vastly improved. However, it really is a shame that he's shrunk over the past four years and that the attempt to brighten him up a bit has resulted in a few changes seemingly for the sake of it. In short Barricade's good, but not the no-brainer upgrade on the original that he should have been.