Transformers Animated Deluxe Lockdown Toy Review

in 2008, Action Figure Review, Decepticon, Deluxe, Transformers Animated

Transformers Animated

General Information:
Release Date: June 2008
Price Point: $10.99 (varies depending on retailer)
Retailer: General (Toys R Us, Target, Wal-Mart etc.)
Accessories: Gauntlet/hook, Blaster


"Transformers Animated" was a series that allowed designers to explore some interesting ideas that had only been touched on now and then in previous Transformers programs. One of these was the idea of a Transformer Bounty Hunter who by association with the trade wound up being a Decepticon: Lockdown. Voiced by the awesome Lance Henrikson, this character made his mark on the show and fans despite only appearing in a few episodes and comic books. Later, he would go on to become the inspiration for a "Revenge of the Fallen" figure of the same name.

Vehicle Mode:
Lockdown's vehicle mode looks like something right out of a "Mad Max" movie. With a low profile that looks like a classic Muscle Car from the 60's, Lockdown has all the trappings of a customized car. This includes a front end with huge cowcatcher styled scoops with spikes sticking out the front. Each wheel has a spike in the center and more spikes can be found on the top of the vehicle. The "cowcatcher" pattern is inverted to form his spoiler and he has three large exhaust pipes set at angles on the sides of the vehicle. On top of all this, he has a huge engine block sticking out the center of his hood. Overall, this is one awesome looking vehicle that is sure to strike fear into any Autobot getting in its way!

Lockdown is cast in two shades of black plastic, one with a matte finish (making up most of the vehicle's armor) and then a more typical, "shiny" black plastic used for the wheels. Silver is found on parts like his exhaust pipes, engine and the spiked sections of his wheels. The cabin section is cast in translucent red, giving him a slightly more dangerous appearance. Both his headlights and rear lights are also cast in translucent red. The matte finish looks really good on the black portions. It gives the figure a rough, unfinished and almost ghost like quality that adds to the air of mystery around Lockdown.

Paint applications are done in several colors including silver, red, gold, black and green. Though that is a big list of colors, they're used rather sparsely across the vehicle. It's not excessive at all, which is great. The silver is found on the front end of the vheicle and the back. It's also used to paint the spikes on the top of the car. The red is used sparingly, most notably on the front end of the engine. The black is used to paint the armor details around the windshield and side windows while the green is found on the front end of the car, flanking the engine. Overall it's a nice paint job that is clean and crisp while staying faithful to the animation model from the television show. The only detail that is "off" is the gold Decepticon symbol on the top of the vehicle. In the television show he has a black symbol (resembling the G1 "rub symbols") but for marketing purposes it makes sense to celarly show Lockdown as an "evil" Decepticon even if he really is on his own side most of the time.

The vehicle rolls nicely on all four wheels. If you wanted to make Lockdown look more intimidating in this form, you can flip him over and swing out the hook in the front of the car. Then he can look like he's trying to grab his prey even in vehicle mode!

Transformation to Robot Mode:

  1. Detach the engine piece and set it aside.
  2. Swing the center of the vehicle's front end up (the section with the hook) and detach it. Set it aside.
  3. Holding the sides on the back of the vehicle firmly, pull each one out.
  4. Rotate the side pices around to bein forming the robot feet.
  5. Swing the sections with the front wheels on them back.
  6. Pull the rear wheel well sections down to extend the legs.
  7. Swing the spoiler sections up.
  8. Rotate the upper body around.
  9. Split the remaining section from the rear of the vehicle and swing the parts out to the sides to begin forming the robot arms.
  10. Straighten out each robot arm.
  11. Rotate the forarms around and swing the hands out (but not all the way, they are meant to be at an angle).
  12. Swing the shoulder armor up.
  13. Swing the chest panel out.
  14. Swing the robot head/neck piece up.
  15. Swing the chest panel back into place.
  16. Attach the "hook" panel to either forearm.
  17. On the engine, rotate the top part around, then attach it to the "hook" piece, this should release the two weapon barrels. If not, you can press the button on the bottom of the weapon manually.

Robot Mode:
In robot mode, Lockdown is meant to look every bit as scary as he does in vehicle mode, but amazingly he manages to look more scary. The original idea behind the character was to create a "Frankenstein" like Decepticon. His head design definitely reflects this with spikes running down the sides of his head and neck as well as a monstrous face with a huge chin (not that big chins were hard to find in "Animated"). Also taking the "Frankenstein" analogy further, Lockdown has asymmetrical legs. One has a knee area with a triangular knee armor piece while the other has a diamond shaped one, quite unusual for Transformers, but accurate to his animation model. His transformation winds up creating one of the tallest "Deluxe" Class figures out there (in "Animated" or any series really). If you were to go purely based on height (and not factor in bulk), he's practically a Voyager Class! He also has some of the other key details from the animation model including shoulder armor with more spikes, lanky looking arms connected to thicker forearms and a central body that starts wide at the chest but becomes very thin in the middle before leading to larger legs. This has an interesting effect as it makes him look very strong from the waist down but fast from the waist up, a deadly combination!

All of the same colors from the vehicle mode are seen here, except this time outyellow and green paint get featured. The green shade seen in vehicle mode is found on his legs, waist and torso area, but there's a darker shade that is used around his chest armor. Silver is heavily used as well, most notably on all the spikes and on his face. Yellow comes into play on his "hook" weapon panel that fits over the forearm, adding a bright splash of color to a rather dark character.

Lockdown has sixteen points of articulation in this form. That includes five in each arm and three in each leg. He can also turn his head and waist. A note of caution regarding his hands: while most Transformers with hands that swing out allow you to swing them out all the way, Lockdown does not do this. His hands are meant to sit at an odd angle. This odd design choice lead to many a broken Lockdown unfortunately (including my own, the one you see in photos above is actually a replacement). Also note: the initial waves of Lockdown figures came with the "engine" weapon that was meant to be able to attach to the forearm on Ratchet. However, many of them didn't. Instead fans everywhere were frustrated as they tried to squeeze the weapon onto Ratchet's forearm unsuccessfully. Later versions fixed this issue, but it's something to be warned about if you're expecting that level of interactivity.

Final Thoughts:
I really liked the concept of Lockdown and his design. He looks nice and scary in both forms and the character is simply awesome. However, the production/QA issues on this figure cannot be ignored and it's definitely a matter of "buyer beware" with this figure. If you can get one of the later, "fixed" versions it is recommended!