Transformers Bumblebee
Transformers Bumblebee
Transformers Bumblebee
Transformers Bumblebee

Transformers Bumblebee
Transformers Bumblebee
Transformers Bumblebee
Transformers Bumblebee

Bumblebee spent much of the first half of the film disguised as a banged-up 1974 Camaro. This was apparently meant to be hilarious, though it looked much better than the generic 2008 Concept Camaro he later adapted to.

Hasbro weren't about to miss out on this opportunity to get two figures out however, and a toy based on the character's first appearance was produced in the Deluxe class. There was a Legends figure too, but obviously that was terrible (actually, it wasn't too bad as Movie Legends go though it's still awful in the grand scheme of things). The early version was also sold as some store exclusive in a double pack with the updated Bumblebee - this version, which features battle damage paint applications, is the one I have.


Without being covered in grime and rust, the car mode actually looks rather good (even if mine has something buggered in the Automorph and the front won't quite stay in place), to the extent where you wonder what exactly Sam's problem was. It's a little too clean even with the battle damage, but then I guess this is unavoidable without lots of expensive paint applications. Thankfully, the ever-excellent Reprolabels have created a set which helps greatly wth this aspect.

The '74 version of Bumblebee seems to be in a slightly smaller scale than the update and is also considerably more solid in car mode through being made up of relatively chunky blocks rather than thin panels. The overall look is rather stylish, even if the painted windows jar a bit compared to the clear plastic used on most other Deluxe Movie vehicles. It's very solid too - apart from whatever I managed to do to the front end, the vehicle is compact and doesn't get deformed if you look at it wrong. The colour scheme works nicely with the retro lines too.


Whereas onscreen the differences in Bumblebee's robot modes were basically limited to a few parts on his upper body the figure of the '74 version is almost completely different. It has a much simpler transformation which results in a lot of parts being in different places. It's not a bad scheme however and doesn't have the slightly annoying fiddly sections of the updated version. The resulting robot looks quite different too - it's still identifiably Bumblebee, but it's a little clumsier in places.

The legs especially are a bit of a mess - while the Automorphing parts themselves are neat enough, Bumblebee ends up with huge feet while the design of the legs means he's always leaning forward on his ankles, legs curved. Combined with the decent (if unspectacular) arm articulation it means he can strike a decent boxing pose, but tends to look a bit weird doing much else. The chest design is also very simple and bears no real resemblance to the character in the film (to date only the Revenge of the Fallen Human Alliance figure has actually replicated the character model's chest). Still, once you get over the lack of similarity it isn't too bad a figure - just a bit gawky.


Ultimately, the '74 Bumblebee is rather disappointing, though. It feels like a lot of corners have been cut - it's possible the toy was rushed to be in stores to come out when the film opened and the figure was probably designed to fall by the wayside as soon as the 'proper' Bumblebee hit stores a couple of months later. More one for completists - he can scuffle with Barricade well enough, but lacks the dynamism of most other Movie Deluxes.