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*Blog* Silly collector TFs are for kids!

Posted by:
Knightwing at 2008-08-31 12:18 pm

In case you don't know, the above is in reference to the long running Trix cereal ad campain.  The basic premis is that a rabbit keeps trying to eat kids cereal.  His polts are always foiled, and sombody always says,"Silly Rabbit, Trix are for kids!"

There's a simple reason for bringing this up.  We collectors often forget that kids are the primary driving force behind the sale of all given toy lines.  Over the course of the years the collectors have complained about toys not having die-cast parts anymore.  They've also complained that the shows weren't layered deap enough, there should be more complicated story lines.  Well we got what we wanted in both cases and then whined that it wasn't good enough. 

Think I'm wrong?  The toy.  For all the fantastic improvements in plastics technology and paint durabilty, we wanted die-cast.  We got the 6" Titanium line.  We whined about the limitations of the line.  Limitations that came due to the high cost of the die-cast itself.

The show.  We had what has been recognized as the single best series to date in Beast Wars.  We wanted more.  We wanted adult level stories.  We got Beast Machines.  While it did have adult level story lines, it lost all the magic of Beast Wars.

Today.  Now we have arguably the best of both worlds.  But, many collectors (myself included) can lose perspective as to where we belong on the food chain.  Currently we have Transformers Animated on the air.  The show has a LOT of wonderful references to that which came before it, all for us ever so important collectors.  Add to that, the story line is easy enough to follow that even if you didn't know what those references were it's a good show. 

What do collectors do?  Complain they don't like the style of animation.  The shows good.  The story is good.  The script is good.  The voice acting is good.  The concepts are good.  But, some collectors say the animation style stinks.  I passed this off as people just looking for something to complain about until I bought IT.

It is the toy that singularly displays the problem with things being geared to kids.  Let me explain.  I like many am collecting at least some of the TFA line, as well as some of the Universe line currently on store shelves.  Like with the cartoon, there's something for the collector, and something for the kids.  The Universe line is in truth ment for collectors.  Yes kids will buy it because it's a Transformer, but lets be honest the entire line is made up of figures that pay homage to figures that were never for sale in the lifespan of the kids. 

Then, there is the TFA toy line.  It is for kids.  Yes we collectors are/will buy at least some of them, but this if for the kids.  It is ment to be geared for them, not us.  These are toys that look like the "junk" (according to some) that we see on screen. 

Let me "close the loop" now.  I collect mostly Prime & Megatron molds.  I was very impressed with all the Deluxe figures I've picked up.  Then you get to the Voyager Class.  Gimicks abound.  Primes spining legs, Megatrons chest, Starscreams everything.  Things didn't improve as the toys got larger either Leader Megatron has a moving mouth, syncronized chopper blades, lights and sounds.  Then I bought IT.  The single worst figure a collector could happen upon Supreme Roll Out and Command Optimus Prime.  This figure is so gimick loaded that you efectively can't pose him (except standing upright)  in bot mode dispite good quality and plentiful joints.

My problem wasn't the toy.  The toy is just fine, when you realize it's ment for an 8yr old (not a 33yr old father of two :)).  My problem was me.  I lost perspective on what the toys were, who they were for, why they were made.  Is Supreme Prime on par with Supreme Unicron or Primus?  Nope.  But, it wasn't ment to be.  And realizing that, made the loss of the $50 I spent not feel like a waste rather an additon to an ever growing collection.  It also makes me much happier to have my Supreme(ly gimicked out) Prime. 

Autobutt said,  - 2008-08-31 13:16:00
So KW, what is "IT?"
Jumpercliff said,  - 2008-08-31 13:49:17
Great assessment!
yoyo said,  - 2008-08-31 14:17:11
yo you be rite well maby a litel
but stel men or kids we all like TFs so
Someone said,  - 2008-08-31 15:00:20
Unbelievable. If I was Japanese, would that make me part of the driving force behind MP? Hope so. But if MP Megs is for kids, then that does not make any sense at all. Except that my quest to acquire an Mp-4 Convoy inc trailer will only be helped
Cheetor2 said,  - 2008-08-31 15:17:09
I have to agree with the post. I've been collecting the toys for as long as there have been Transformers. I'll be 37 on the 2nd. My kids are girls but they know what to buy daddy for x-mas, b-day and fathers day. Most people who enter my house ask if I have a son and I say nope, thier mine. I am a 37 yr old child. :) And I'm proud of it.
Over the years there have been some good shows and yes, Beast Wars was by far the best. I also liked Beast Machines even though the toys wern't the greatest. But that's why some of us customize some of the figures. I think Animated is a good show with good stories and figures that look like their cartoon counterparts. But some people just have to find any reason to complain. The TF movie was meant for the collectors and those of us who have been life-long TF fans.
So I also say that TF's are for kids!! So let the kid in all of us live on.
tonybsuave said,  - 2008-08-31 15:49:46
very good points made, but I guess I defy the usual: I love TFA! But I knew from the start I would not buy RO prime, for the sole fact that he is out of scale. And BM was terrible, I don't care who you are :P
Perceptor said,  - 2008-08-31 16:25:38
Hm, interesting commentary. But my opinions are slightly different. You say:

>>>(fans) Complain they don't like the style of animation.

I love the animation. It was strikingly different than what we've had before, but I'm used to it. Lets face it, no product, toy or otherwise is perfect. To me, the characters of the Bay film are too visually complex. So much so that they're barely recognizable. BUT, even I can sit down and pencil Bumblebee and my 3 year old son will get excited saying, "It's Bumblebee!!!" Try doing that w/ movie Bumblebee! HA good luck.

TF:Animated is the "un-movie" Transformers. They're iconic, recognizable and stylized. Being less visually complex doesn't mean they're "kiddy" it means it's different and took a very different style of artist to conceive the notion.

To me the fun in collecting is enjoying the diversity.

>>>The shows good. The story is good. The script is good.
Just "Good?" I think you haven't watched them all! I think they're great! My KIDS love them, I love them and that is a VERY tough thing for a writer to accomplish. Bravo Mr. Isenberg and company! Bravo

>>The voice acting is good.
Same as above. Listen closely. The voice acting in this show is absolutely top notch. Starscream couldn't be better if Chris Latta (Starscream) and Robert Stack (Ultra Magunu) jumped out of the grave and took up the microphones again! The personality they have bestowed in these characters is phenomonal, and I couldn't ask for more!

>>The concepts are good.

Ditto, ditto, ditto. Look, I'm not saying this to suck up to anybody. I highly doubt that anyone from CartoonNetwork, Hasbro or otherwise is paying that close attention to comments I make here. I just think this series is about as good as it can get. (And it's not over yet! Thank goodness.)
Perceptor said,  - 2008-08-31 16:25:51
I agree w/ you about Supreme O.P. More for kids, but at $50, not many kids are going to get to enjoy it...

I LOVE the gimmics of the voyager toys... Anyway, interesting perspective KW. Thanks for sharing your insight.
ilovetransformers said,  - 2008-08-31 17:07:45
silly,rabbit,Trix are not in your programming
Veeble Fetzer said,  - 2008-08-31 18:08:29
We're all kids, so immature we spend our well-earned money on this useless crap, but we love it! Me too!
Rhinoxfan said,  - 2008-08-31 18:59:22
U are reading my mind on the subject. Tf animated isnt my style too as i have been calling it "kiddish" many on this site have argued wiht me bout it(its all good nothing personal every1 has their opinion). but u look at the difference between universe and animated and u can see which toys hasbro ment for us. now im not an older guy like many i am 16. however i know the shows and the transformers world. beast wars was da start for me and since i have neva stopped collecting. my beast wars collection almost complete and i have my many others as well. however i still buy some animated that to me look "cool enough" such as the new lockdown, swoop, and prowl. however i look at the new univers prowl and compare it with the animated 1 and see that my many critical opinions about the new show were right and animated was never meant for us older (and more youthful) guys and gals. So yes i dont like da animated series because it wasnt meant for me yet somehow the collector inside me still buys the again "cool enough" looking ones.
budgrimlock said,  - 2008-08-31 19:09:17
hehe...I had the same catharsis. I got ROC Prime way early, like may or june I think. When I "discovered" the shoulder poseability I freaked. Then I remembered how pissed I was at Powermaster Prime's short arms. Then I remembered that awesome arm kit they made a few years back for PM Prime. Wow! I'll still have ROC Prime when somebody designs a fix for his arms. Maybe it will come with articulated hands. They toy is huge enough to accommodate a design that would work and allow some kind of transformation, though the "auto' transform feature would go away. That was what ruined this figure- "auto" transforming. They did that because parents, elder siblings, cousins, and caregivers of all kinds complained about being asked to transform Unicron and Primus for their kids. Cybertron Starscream is still more disappointing to me than ROC Prime. He really grows on you, like Ultimate Bumblebee. I repanined his blue siren red, so it glows as bright as the other side, and I fantasize about getting my hands on an extra ROC axe for the animated nemesis I will eventually have to make.
KilledbyDeath said,  - 2008-08-31 19:48:37
The only transformer I truly hate is the Leader Class Movie Megatron. That figure has the distinctive honor or dishonor of being the worst thing I ever spent money on.
Knightwing said,  - 2008-08-31 22:02:26
Actually Perceptor, the animation style never bothered me. But, it is the only thing I've heard other adult collectors compalin about in regards to the series. And my appoligies to any insulted if "good" wasn't good enough. I was trying to sound objective. Personally I love the show. But as I've come to realize, it's ment for kids first and collectors second.
Hilowell said,  - 2008-08-31 22:24:35
I think people think too much about this stuff. Like it or don't but if we collectors don't complain a little then we continue to get stuff like too much purple on Megs or too much yellow on Prime or humans that change to animals being called Transformers. I agree that a lot of stuff is meant for kids, but us "adults" should know what's what. If you thought for one second that Roll Out Prime was an adult-type toy then yer on crack. On the other hand, if you enjoy it, then enjoy it. But to say we should just take everything that is handed to us just because this is a kid driven hobby is misguided. And btw, I like the animated style but won't be getting any more of the figs besides Leader Megatron cause they are all made with something called crap. I'm talking bootleg-style plastic. You all know what I mean.
Overhaul said,  - 2008-08-31 23:44:14
Here's hoping I don't stick my foot in my mouth on this one...
To give you an idea from where I'm coming from, I am a G1 enthusiast (although not a devote one, I love Beast Wars as much as the next guy. Maybe more in fact...) who is 27. My fandom had died down in my teens, and then while in college I got hooked on BW. Then I watched BM, hated much about it, and since then havn't followed any shows (watched a little RID, and didn't care for it). So I definitely fall into said category.
But simply put: I ignore what I don't like. I havn't had the opportunity to watch Armada/Energon/Cybertron, so I can't commend on said shows. Animated's animation looks off to me, but I'm considering renting the pilot. And as for collecting, I buy a select few figures. Mostly Universe figures reminiscent of G1, but I have a few from the montioned shows. Was also big into Alternators.
My question is (and this could get me in trouble) should we be buying every single figure released? I mean, how much money would go into this? And where would we store it all? I just think some folks can get a little too carried away with it (hopefully no one present). I just think it's crazy when Hasbro (and/or Takara) releases any new figure, no matter how bad it may be, and some just have to have it to complete their collection.
Overhaul said,  - 2008-08-31 23:45:21
The second part of that is less a question and more a comment: but what I've taken into consideration is that since Transformers are geared towards kids, as a collector, I fear contributing to toys being sold out quicker, meaning that some kid who's a fan wouln't be getting the figure he wants.
It doesn't apply to everything, I doubt very many parents will be ordering Master Piece Megatron for their kids (mine is on the way), but what if a kid has his heart set on say, Roll out Prime, but the last one was bought by a collector? Or worse yet, an E-bay scalper? I remember as a kid wanting the original G1 Prime, but when my mom tried getting him for me for Christmas, he was sold out.
But I think on some level, we should be considerate of the kids. And hey, we certainly havn't been forgotten. We've got Universe, and the occasional Masterpiece too, not to mention what else might come out. And as for a means of stories, you can buy DVDs, or even follow the comics (I think many have lost faith in the IDW verse, although I can enjoy it for the most part).
Well, there's my two cents.
changy said,  - 2008-09-01 00:01:03
you are spot on, i love transformers but hell in the end there just toy
Nakobass said,  - 2008-09-01 00:33:38
I'm 28, and love Transformes with all my heart. I try to see the best in every Transformers cartoon. I even liked BM until they turned the coolest Character Jetstorm back into Siverbolt. Yeah, I complain a lot also, but I try to keep in mind we are all so lucky. What other 20+ year old cartoon is still going strong? What other 20+ cartoon had a blockbuster movie? I say we all should just enjoy what we have now.
Be grateful we all can watch Transformers on TV, after 20+ years since it was created.
Nakobass said,  - 2008-09-01 00:40:15
One more thing. I don't know about the rest of you, but I only buy the Transformers, I personly like. I got Prowl from Animated, and that's probably the only one I'm getting. The rest are from the Universe line. Of Course, I have to get that Animated Omega Supreme, I like him better then the G1, and Energon versions.
Coronationstarscream said,  - 2008-09-01 06:23:05
This is an excellent point. I love TF but I hardly get to interact much with the fan community. I got to go to Botcon 2006 in Lexington KY and I noticed too many of the collectors there being snotty jerks to each other and just making up things to complain about. I was like that once. I saw the first advertisements for Beast Wars and I thought OMG they have ruined Transformers. Then I watched the show and I will never think that again. Fans are whiny brats too much of the time. The toys are for kids. We should all remember that. Thanks for putting us in our place with this Blog.
Perceptor said,  - 2008-09-01 10:15:21
>>And my appoligies to any insulted if "good" wasn't good enough. I was trying to sound objective. Personally I love the show.

No offense taken! It's all subjective and I'd respect (but disagree with) your opinion even if you said you disliked it... I just think we older fans have to as, "Nakobass" stated very eloquently:

"...but I try to keep in mind we are all so lucky. What other 20+ year old cartoon is still going strong? What other 20+ cartoon had a blockbuster movie? I say we all should just enjoy what we have now.
Be grateful we all can watch Transformers on TV, after 20+ years since it was created."

I couldn't agree more NB. Well stated.
Autobutt said,  - 2008-09-01 10:54:34
But KW what is the "it" that u mentioned?!
deceptifan said,  - 2008-09-01 11:42:38
Amen to that because really, Transformers are for us kids. ( I'm 13).
Knightwing said,  - 2008-09-01 11:49:51
"it" was the Roll Out and Command Supreme Class Optimus Prime.
Rhinoxfan said,  - 2008-09-01 12:02:42
some of u state how we spend our cash soo much and shouldnt be out to get them all. well im somewhat that way. the only season i want all of is beast wars its my fav and it is what started on me for trnasdfroemers. the rest i buy what again said, looks "cool enough"
Autobutt said,  - 2008-09-01 15:36:02
Sorry for kinda nagging, its kind of hard to understand that part.

What you said about everything i pretty much i agree with, but i personally dont care that TFs are made for "kids." Im 14, and i buy figures. I think its awesome when (no offense) older fans go out and get TFs. Everyones a kid inside and its jus great when people can express that side of themselves.
Knightwing said,  - 2008-09-01 19:19:31
That really was the point. I wasn't complaining that TFs (toys or shows) now adays suck. I think they're as good as ever. But, we adult collectors can lose perspective on what it is we collect. This blog was really just an effort to remind everyone that collecting is fine, but being rational and enjoying your collection is great.
Bgrngod said,  - 2008-09-02 12:23:55
This is exactly why I haven't bought the Supreme OP. That particular figure is CLEARLY intended for the much younger set.
Bass X0 said,  - 2008-09-03 12:02:01
Yeah, even if you did collect Optimus Prime toys but weren't bothered by a gap in your collection then it would have been wise to pass on the Supreme toy. I like the characters, I like the story, I like the toys. But when something is so obviously aimed at a four year old and not for everybody like the deluxes and voyagers are then I'm just not going to want it.
Sailor Moon said,  - 2008-09-20 10:25:54
and that's why I stick with deluxes and voyagers. (exept for animated megatrn, but hes just that awesome.)

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