Transformers Sideswipe
Transformers Sideswipe
Transformers Sideswipe
Transformers Sideswipe

Added to beef up the Autobot numbers in Revenge of the Fallen, Sideswipe received a fair bit of attention from fans beforehand due to the popularity of his Generation 1 namesake. As it was after dramatically bisecting Sideways in the opening battle, Sideswipe largely kept out of the way, staying with Ironhide's squad under NEST's command. At least (unlike Arcee, Jolt and Ratchet) he stayed in the unit consistently, though it was a bit of a waste of a fascinating design. He had much the same role in Dark of the Moon, sadly.

Toy-wise, Sideswipe appeared in the Legends and Deluxe brackets, as well as being paired with Sgt. Epps for the Human Alliance sub-series. The Deluxe mould has already been used for brace of repaints - one with a few minor added lines and NEST insignia, as well as a red version arbitrarily named Swerve.


In another piece of General Motors product placement, Sideswipe transforms into the latest Corvette Stingray Concept. Amusingly, they collapsed in on themselves a week after Revenge of the Fallen was released and the car will likely never hit production. Which is maybe a little bit of a shame - my feelings on other GM cars might be a little wearing on regular readers, but I rather like the Stingray. It's so ridiculously comic book. The silver finish is stunning too, though sadly it chips rather easily.

The sleek, low-line shape is somewhat ruined by the massive join lines - more noticeable on this roller-skate of a car due to both the shape and the colour. Big offenders are the wings before the front wheels, the split up the middle of the bonnet and the obvious nature of the rear segment being a separate unit. Still, the dark blue windows look great, they've bothered painting the wheels and, Hell, it's actually silver, not some weird grey plastic. The mode is also quite sturdy and compact, being one of the easier Deluxe toys to actually pack back into vehicle mode. However the thing once again has next to no ground clearance - kids wheeling him along the floor risk damaging the robot parts underneath.


Sideswipe's transformation isn't the smoothest - the chest and back section have to be done in a very specific order and even then the shoulders don't properly clip onto the torso, which is frustrating. Allowing for the physics of scaling a car-sized CGI model down to a 6" toy, the accuracy is impressive - though this isn't necessarily a good thing. Sideswipe has wheels for feet and as such can be very frustrating to balance. His legs have to be posed quite far apart to get him to stand while the feet also need to be tilted for even this to work (somewhat losing the striking design).

Still, once you get Sideswipe standing up he looks great. The robot is a bit of a shell former with much of the car ending up on his back but what we're left with nevertheless makes a strong impression, helped by the dark grey working well with the silver. It's a really nice, different design - detailed without being too busy. While he is a bit of a shellformer at least there is an original twist to some of the kibble - the way the upper panels of most of the car fold up onto the robot's back is very well done. Sideswipe's swords are represented in a passable fashion - while they don't extend out of nothing at least the folding motion is rather addictive. Sadly toy safety laws mean the blades are rather blunt, but the intent in there. The Mech Alive gimmick, in this case moving panels on the knee, is pointless but at the same time unobtrusive.


Sideswipe is a mixed success. The transformation is good and the striking, unusual robot layout is well done - fitting in with the new moulds from Revenge of the Fallen making some inroads to making more unorthodox robots. However, it's difficult to make him stand up, even with a couple of unofficial tweaks - it would have been nice if, like Beast Machines Jetstorm or fellow 2009 Deluxe Rampage, a less accurate but more stable configuration for the feet was provided. Another drawback is that the silver paint chips easily. Overall I like Sideswipe despite these frustrations but he won't be to everyone's tastes.