Thoughts of Masterforce take me back to the days of fuzzy episodes on worn out VHS tapes and VCD's full of digital noise giving me a different appreciation of toys I already had like Powermaster Optimus Prime and desire for out of reach ones like Overlord. It was exciting to see the Pretenders animated (aside from footage used in commercials and the season 5 intro) lead by Metalhawk.
Thankfully, Metalhawk these days has the occasional release outside of Japan, like the toy we're looking at today. Released in Transformers Legacy: Evolution, Metalhawk is a remold of the excellent Kingdom Cyclonus toy (who I have, but never talked about here). Unlike his prior updates, this time Metalhawk is based on his inner robot form and not the Pretender shell. I'm a fan of the shells designs,but it's a nice change of pace.
Metalhawk is a larger toy as a Voyager Class figure that's pleasantly articulated and features his trademark sword and blasters. The blasters are formed by the tail fins from vehicle mode. They join together for form the blaster. The Evo-Fusion gimmick of the Evolution sub line isn't always spectacular, but I guess it makes sense here. In all honesty, it's just clever marketing to keep retailers happy while not sacrificing anything on the toy. Still, it can be funny sometimes. Other than the shell, all Metalhawk is missing is his larger rifle. Hopefully some fan groups produce an aftermarket gun and shell to really round out this pretty solid toy.
To be honest, if I didn't know better, I would have thought this was a new mold. Metalhawk is a great update to his original toy. They really did a good job here, it looks like he stepped right off the TV screen. Transformation is easy and felt natural. If you have Cyclonus you already know this as did I. Though it felt fresh this time. Even though I have a few other Metalhawk toys, it's still exciting owning this one. I'm brought back to the days of being a purple haired kid in a dingy hoodie working at a office supply store despite being a shaved haired middle aged man working an office job in a regularly washed hoodie. It's much easier to watch Masterforce now than it was then, though I still have that VCD set somewhere.