Dark of the Moon Commander Class Powerglide Toy Review

in 2011, Action Figure Review, Autobot, Commander, Dark of the Moon, Generation One, Cyberverse

Dark of the Moon

General Information:
Release Date: May 2011
Price Point: $5.99 (varies depending on retailer)
Retailer: General (Toys R Us, Target, Wal-Mart etc.)
Accessories: Missile pods x 2


The "Cyberverse" of Transformers is partly made up of figures that are somewhere between the traditional Scout Class in size and complexity and the old Legends Class of figures. In general, Commander Class figures in the Cyberverse (not to be confused with Commander Class figures in the Power Core Combiners line) have weaponry that can be utilized by the smaller Legion Class figures. In concert with the Legion Class and playsets being released, the "Cyberverse" forms a complete world of play at a smaller price point.

As the years have gone along, several Generation One characters have found themselves reinvented for the movie universe. This goes from popular characters like Optimus Prime and Megatron all the way to Breakaway (aka "Getaway" from Generation One). The Cyberverse now brings another G1 character reinvented for the movie universe in the form of Powerglide, who is actually one of the first figures in the Cyberverse line not based on a figure existing in other size classes.

Robot Mode:
Generation One Powerglide was one of the most distinctive looking Autobots from the original series. He was one of the few sculpts that was not given a redeco (and thus having two or more characters running around with the same basic animation model) so he was quite memorable (along with his boistrous personality). You can take a look at Powerglide's more recent release here. That version was based on his Generation One appearance and was meant to be a modern version of the classic character.

This Powerglide is very similar to his G1 counterpart in some ways, but quite different in others, marrying the G1 and movie aesthetics into one cool looking figure. In general, Powerglide's overall shape is similar to his G1 predecessor. His head is oval shaped towards the top, he has a narrow, barrel shaped torso with sections that divide his torso from his arms. His legs have the rear stabilizers from the vehicle mode on them as well. He also has thick forearms, another feature that G1 powerglide had in both toy and animated form. Among the smaller details carried over from the G1 Powerglide are the sculpted details on his face. He has a mouth plate with two small eyes, which is very similar to the face design from G1 Powerglide. I really dig this continuity in design as it pays proper homage to the original figure and animation model.

There is some design variance from G1 Powerglide of course. G1 Powerglide had his wings separating the torso from the arms. Here the wings are actually mounted on the outside of the arms. The sections separating the torso from the arms are now panels from the vehicle mode's front section. Where this figure really borrows from the movie aesthetic are smaller details. If you look at his face, it is based on G1 Powerglide but it has a distinctly more aggressive appearance with more overlapping panels in the mouth area. His hip area also has some angled panels that look like they've folded to form that section. There are also smaller mechanical looking details such as those on his lower legs and feet. These extra details really add visual richness to the figure. The overall effect is an interpretation that shows what Powerglide would perhaps look like in the more "real" world of the movie universe instead of the flatter, more colorful cartoon universe and the result looks great!

Powerglide's color scheme is inspired by his G1 predecessor. His plastic colors are dark red and silver. The color distribution is similar to G1 Powerglide's, with the vehicle mode parts cast in red while most of his robot limbs are silver. His paint colors are metallic blue, silver and black. The metallic blue is the most prominent in this mode since it makes up details that face front such as the mechanical bits inside his lower legs, the vents on either side of his chest and his hip area. Silver paint can be found on the sides of his legs where you'll see details really meant for the vehicle mode. Black is found on his chest where it paints part of the nosecone for the vehicle mode. Overall the deco looks fantastic, with the metallic blue color being particularly striking, giving Powerglide the appearance of having energy glowing from those sections.

There are ten points of articulation on Powerglide, which is quite a bit for a Commander Class figure. Four of these points are ball joints, specifically in the upper arm and hips. I'm also including the ability for his hands to swing in and his feet being able to swing up. Powerglide comes with two missile pods which can be held separately or connected to form a single, more dangerous looking weapon. Trut be told, the weapons really work best put together as one. Separately the pegs aren't quite long enough to sit in his fists firmly. One thing that I had always wished for Powerglide in G1 was a weapon in robot mode, and this version provides a cool looking one (not that the Universe 2.0 version didn't have a cool weapon either).

Transformation to Vehicle Mode:

  1. Detach the missile pods from each other, and swing each of their sides out so they are relatively flat.
  2. Swing each robot foot up into the lower leg.
  3. Swing each fist into the forearms.
  4. Swing the nosecone of the plane on the back of the head up.
  5. Swing the waist/hip section down.
  6. Swing the panels on either side of the torso out and rotate them around.
  7. Swing the panels from the last step down and connect them.
  8. Rotate the wings around and connect them to the main body of the plane using the tabs and corresponding slots on the central section.
  9. Connect the robot legs together.
  10. Swing the legs up, bend them at the knees and then connect the back section with the front, using the small tabs near the robot knee joints.
  11. The missiles each connect to the undersides of the wings using the pegs and tabs, so connect the pegs the robot arm sections, then swing the pieces up to connect to the tabs.

Vehicle Mode:
Like G1 Powerglide, Cyberverse Powerglide transforms into a vehicle very much inspired by the A-10 Thunderbolt. It has many of the distinctive features of the Thunderbolt including its distinctive front end with a machine gun port in the front. The middle is basically tube shaped while the rear section has two large engines (one on each side) with vertical stabilizers right behind them. Unlike previous Powerglide incarnations, this one is heavily armed under the wings, similar to the real life vehicle. In terms of smaller details, the surface of the vheicle is a patchwork of metal panels with small circles sculpted in representing bolts. The front of each engine has turbines beautifully sculpted in the middle. I really have a lot of love for this sculpt.

Powerglide is mostly red plastic in this mode, with some silver plastic on the underside of the wings. The robot arms wind up on the undersides of the wings, which is a nice carry over design element from G1 Powerglide. Silver paint is found on the front and side trim of each wing. On top of each wing is an Autobot symbol with stylized wing symbols on the sides. The cockpit windows are painted black. This isn't a lot of deco, but truth be told it's just the right amount. The silver on the wings is very effective especially when combined with the silver plastic on the underside of the vehicle.

While Powerglide is best outfitted with his own weapons in terms of fit, however the holes under his wings are standard sizes for other Cyberverse weapons to be attached. Or if you prefer, you can take a Cyberverse weapon and attach it to the hole on the underside of the missile pod on the left wing. I dig this variety of ways to arm Powerglide in this mode. Of course, heavy weaponry won't do much good if you can't land. Thankfully Powerglide is ready for any landing with two wheels on the underside of each wing and one under the nosecone. They're nicely integrated with the overall design, especially on the underside of the wings where you could easily miss them if you're not looking for them.

Final Thoughts:
Powerglide absolutely rocks. He's like the Classics/Universe "small" version of Powerglide we never got. I also dig that he's the most heavily armed version of the character to date. He's also a great combination of the Generation one and movie aesthetics. Highly recommended!