Various bootlegs and unofficial toys have pretty much been consistent throughout the history of the Transformers brand. It's an ongoing thing with varying opinions on the matter. It's not exclusive to Transformers either, but that's what we're specifically talking about here. Being that the initial batches of Transformers were made from prior existing toy molds, bootleggers had an early start. When you add in Diakron was on shelves not long before Transformers, there was a lot of grey area for off brand Transformers to thrive.
Any trip to your local discount store around the holidays can prove it's a ongoing issue. That's not even counting today's adult collecting world of unlicensed 3P toys adding to Hasbro/Takara's ongoing legal department dilemma. I'm not here to shame on anybodies preferred way to buy Transformers, I'm just setting up today's post centered around an old commercial. But man, I had no clue why my brown Ravage from K-Mart's feet kept falling off.
There's a variety of methods that Transformers as a brand has deployed to emphasize that there's is the official 'real' Transformers. The most famous would be the heat rub symbols. Honestly, I loved these things so much I was a little bummed when they went away. I didn't know what a bootleg toy was when I was a kid, but I loved putting my finger on those stickers and watching the symbols light up in a variety of colors.
Let's be honest though, this commercial is a bit harsh. The Transformers are saying very firmly that they are the only real Transformers and the others are fake. It's harsh and I like it. Not for any other reason than 'whoa dang,'. If at any minute if they started cussing, I wouldn't be surprised. I was pretty much expecting Optimus to lose his cool at any minute.