It is third party Transformer time!!! yay…I think…kinda…sorta…My mixed excitement will be explained as we go through this review. I’ve been a huge fan of Fans Project for years, and as you know with the exception of Croc, I’ve actually reviewed all these guys (Croc is cool…just frankly boring). So when Browning II, aka Highbrow, showed up I was happy…then I opened him. This guy is a mixed bag here, I’ll go ahead and say it. Where he is awesome I should be thrilled…well, read on and you’ll see.
So let us take a look at him. As you can see, I even put him on a pedestal, for that is how I looked at Fans Project. The colors are great, and the initial details are pretty cool. I personally love the asymmetry in the legs. In fact with most of robot mode I really like this guy, save the weapon storage. They are on the front of the wings and look kind of sloppy to be honest. Just simple clips from the alt mode. It was the obvious direction, but they could have given us fold out clips on the legs for example or even the back. I may sound like I’m nitpicking but there is a point…
Articulation is top notch I do have to say. He hits the poses with no problems.
Hell he passes the one leg test with freaking FLYING colors! Yes the ankle rocker is a bit loose, so eventually I may not be able to achieve this again, but for right now it was rocking.
Yes the over all basic robot is a champ. But the we start to hit the little things.
And yes I mean little…let’s look at the headmaster. Simple little guy, and that is the problem…with the other two good guy figures there is a lot of neat things going on!
The bodies are filled out more, with Browning’s it is a simple peg body. Also what happened to the paint apps? He is three colors of plastic while the others have painted faces, additional metal details and such. This is just a generic figure with no love given.
Transformation is…ugh…it was a chore. This was NO Smart Robin. The biggest pain was the cab. It just didn’t want to line up and have the canopy peg together properly. Also the plastic chipped at first transformation, which brings me to the next nitpick. The plastic just feels off. Like the first time you taste diet soda, it just felt something was missing. Not KFC/Xtransbots level, but not the Fans Project I’m used to.
Finally as you see, it doesn’t sit proper. Even in the instructions it was propped up on some piece of plastic. So yes, you can transform him, fly him around the room going all pew pew (admit it, we ALL do it at least once every now and then) but after that, it just flops down.
With no rear landing gear or anything, it takes that last chance of any fun this could have had. With Fans Project’s take on Springer they had come up with this neat caddy that would clip on to him that had a Tamashi stage port. This figure NEEDED that. Instead, just toss him aside. Also the front just looks incomplete as well, like there should been something else added. I’m not a fan of the nose gun just hanging there loose.
Oh and the final nail in the coffin? The headmaster is too large to fit in the other figure’s body. C’mon man…that is kind of the whole fun point with the gimmick…tsk. It felt like this guy was just rushed out of production. This COULD have been as cool as Smart Robing, but now it is just a kind of clever idea.
Having them all together really hits the point for me. Browning should have been the icing on the cake, but now…now I think I may be done with Fans Project. I kid you not. This guy goes for $80, and I do NOT feel like I got my $80 worth at all. With MMC, Fans Toys and Make Toys offering Master Piece scale and quality figures for only $20 more, I should have frankly perfection. The robot mode is good, I have to give it that, but with the little let downs and then the screw up with alt mode, I have to give Browning a B-/C+. Flip a coin. For me he’s getting shelved.