If you haven’t been keeping up with James Robert’s “More Than Meets the Eye” Transformers comic series published by IDW then the name Vos probably isn’t a familiar one. I suppose if you live in the New York/New Jersey area you may have heard of a local comedian named Rich Vos, but he’s not who I’m reviewing today. Vos is one of five members of the Decepticon Justice Division. This is a group that keeps a list of traitors and deserters to the Decepticon cause, finds the perpetrators, and destroys them. The team’s alt modes are basically torture and destructive devices. For example Vos turns into a sniper rifle. Kaon converts into an electric chair. Tesarus’ chest is basically a shredder for living robots.
The DJD is a decent enough idea and has a nice following, but they honestly haven’t been featured that much in the comics up until a couple months ago. In a way it makes having figures of the team now a whole lot cooler! Now, will the DJD ever get official action figures? I think that is a tough call. On one hand Hasbro has done quite a few figures from the comics in the Generations line. They have also included comic referential accessories such as Megatron’s Autobot faction symbol. I don’t think that being comic-spawned characters will be the hurdle, however. Instead it will be the fact that some of them have alt-modes that would be questionable for a child’s toy like electric chairs and sniper rifles.
So along comes Mastermind Creations to make all of our IDW dreams come true. Vos joins the “Reformatted” line under the codename: Cynicus. Which is a pretty bad ass name itself. He comes packed in an opening window box that is very much like the one that the Azalea releases came in. The accessories are few, but what he has are pretty good. He has a sniper rifle (yes he also transforms into one), a smaller blaster, a handle to help Feral Rex hold him in gun mode, alternate head, mask, instructions, and bio card.
The unmasked head is a great inclusion which really helps capture a creepy scene from the comics. The head is on a ball-joint, so I did originally attempt to pop it off, but it wasn’t budging and I didn’t want to risk breaking him. Instead, I pulled out the screw in the back of his head and removed the it after pulling it apart. I figured I would play it safe since the instructions don’t address exactly HOW to remove the head. My only complaint about the mask is that I wish they had put some silver paint on the spiked innards of it.
Cynicus is a little guy, so I was a bit nervous that he would have a hellish transformation like Azalea. Thankfully, once I figured out how to untab his backpack it went pretty well. The biggest thing to looks out for with his transformation into and out of his gun-mode are the thin plastic parts. This is aided a bit because MMC put them all on ball joints, so you have some wiggle room while maneuvering them. The completed sniper rifle is very nice, but it takes a big figure to hold it. Obviously Feral Rex is up to the task since MMC were kind enough to also include a handle that fits in his fists. It works okay with figures around the size of MP-10 Prime or larger, and articulated fingers are a must.
The bot-mode is fabulous! He’s a skinny little dude, but he has a ton of articulation. One of the stand out points for Cynicus is ball joint at his wait which lets you move his torso around. It’s not a common joint in Transformer figures, so when it something like it shows up it is very cool. All of his joints have great ranges of motion. He’s anchored down two giant feet that make posing very easy. The bot-mode was really thought out and well constructed.
Mastermind Creations also left a giant square in the middle of his chest for a Decepticon symbol. If you are into putting labels on your third party collection then this one couldn’t be easier. Personally I’m not a fan of adding faction symbols when there wasn’t one to begin with.
Cynicus is a very awesome robot. But he comes at quite a price. I paid about $75 shipped when he was an exclusive to Planet Steel Express, which I believe was also the factory or partner that produced Cynicus. This was also apparently an “early bird” price, and now most stores are taking preorders in the $85+ range. MMC has always been the best value of figure for your dollar in the third party market. This figure really breaks that trend. I’m hoping it was a factory issue and this was an exception because I can’t imagine what the larger DJD members will end up costing at this rate. The MMC quality product is still there, but the price is a little higher.
Based on the product in hand MMC still has my faith. I just hope in the future that maybe they can bring the prices down a little. They have a lot of cool projects in the pipeline that I’m looking forward to, and I’d prefer not to take out a mortgage to own them all!