Can you believe it’s been well over a year since MPM-12 Optimus Prime was unveiled? As strange as it may sound, it was February 2021 when the Internet was set ablaze with memes of cat ears and the like – how times flies.
That means we’re well overdue a new toy in the Masterpiece Movie line, but fortunately, here’s a new reveal of MPM-13 Blackout to keep us going!
We already have plenty of detailed images to pour over and a video from Hasbro China’s Weibo page featuring the designer, Tomo Tatsumi (reposted from YouTube c/o Cybertron 21).
There’s been plenty of rumours and excitement for such a reveal for years, so perhaps it’s surprising to see mixed reactions to the promotional photos thus far, with many fans already stating some disappointment.
Let’s have a deep dive into everything going on with this toy and see if it actually does live up to the hype or not!
#14: It looks pretty accurate to the screen
The first point is perhaps an obvious one, but it still bears saying that the new toy looks incredibly accurate to Blackout’s 2007 big-screen movie portrayal overall. The shape of the chest seems pretty refined and on point, and generally, I think MPM-13 seems to do a solid job capturing the various portions of mechanical detail from the CGI model. Perhaps the one area that feels like a slight departure in terms of visuals is the shoulders, but on the whole, it looks to me like they’ve captured this one rather well.
Still, not everyone is convinced on the matter yet, with plenty of commentators already pointing out elements of the new toy that they’re not so keen on!
#13: It is definitely *not* an upscaled Studio Series figure
One challenge the MPM figure has is stepping into an arena where there are already several very well-received options for Blackout toys on the market, with the most obvious example being the Studio Series figure. Many fans love that toy, so perhaps it’s no surprise to see the comparisons between the two in full swing right away, with some have yet to be convinced by the look of the MPM toy’s robot mode.
There’s even speculation that the designs are linked somehow, with some reactions even calling the MPM design an ‘upscale’ of the smaller release. However, when you look at them side-by-side, it’s clear that MPM-13 is a wholly new figure, and it arguably features some advantages over its Studio Series namesake. The helicopter tail kibble and the backpack section are remarkably more compact, and the arms are considerably more streamlined, to say nothing of more obvious stuff like the articulated hands. There’s little doubt that the Studio Series figure is very successful in its own right, but it will be fascinating to see more of just what the MPM release does differently as more details about it emerge.
#12: It comes with a mini Scorponok
Perhaps it’s no great surprise, but still, the mini Scorponok figure accompanying MPM-13 looks pretty neat! As one might expect, he appears to be more detailed than the Studio Series equivalent, with some decent-looking paint and added articulation. It perhaps doesn’t appear quite as poseable as one might have hoped, but nevertheless, it’s a fun inclusion.
#11: Scorponok sits pretty neatly in the rear compartment of the helicopter mode
One aspect that was shown off better in the Weibo video is how Scorponok can sit and fold up inside Blackout’s rear vehicle mode compartment, again in a manner which at least roughly recalls the 2007 film.
#10: It features Blackout’s signature rotor weapon
It might not sound like a big deal to say the new toy features the rotor weapon commonly associated with the character from the film. Still, there’s actually been a fair bit of excitement for it, especially as this is something the Studio Series figure was missing. The rotor weapon features a spinning action and can flip into Blackout’s arms or be held in hand.
#9: It comes with 2 miniguns
Additionally, two minigun weapons are included that can also be pegged into Blackout’s arms. They can be used in his vehicle form too.
#8: It also features a flip-out blaster in the chest
One elegant feature here is the ability to open a compartment on the chest and flip out a hidden blaster weapon, similarly to how the character does in the 2007 film! Again, this is a new gimmick, unique to MPM-12, so that should be fun to see.
#7: There are some blast effects pieces too
Finally, two bright orange blast effect pieces are included in the box, which can be pegged into either the miniguns or the chest blaster. These accessories certainly aren’t for everyone, but at least it rounds out the package and provides an option for those who want them!
#6: The helicopter mode looks fantastic
While the robot mode may have caused some debate, one aspect of MPM-13 that nearly everyone seems to agree on is that the alternate form looks pretty swish (pun very much intended)! It appears to be a faithful recreation of a Sikorsky MH-53 helicopter and boasts features such as spinning rotors and the like.
#5: The underneath of the vehicle mode is covered
As well as the landing gear, an underside view of the helicopter mode shows how well the designers have filled out the bottom panels to cover all of the various robot mode parts. This is in stark contrast to the Studio Series design, which just left this whole section open, and avoids the partsforming solution employed by the unofficial oversized version of that figure too.
#4: There is diecast in both Blackout and Scorponok
It was made clear in the Weibo video that both Blackout and Scorponok have various examples of diecast running through them, with the main body of the latter all being made of metal. Blackout has some in the legs, most notably on the shins and feet.
#3: The promo pics may well be slightly mistransformed…
Here’s something interesting; although those promotional pics may have failed to win over everyone so far, they may feature a slightly mistransformed version of the toy! A quick look at the packaging artwork shows several elements that differ, most notably the backpack section above the head, with the sides being fanned out at an angle much more reminiscent of the 2007 CGI model. It’s fair to say the toy also looks considerably more impressive in the photo seen on the front of the box and indeed in the Weibo video, so we might need to wait and see more to really know what’s going on.
#2: It’s hard to know the scale of it yet…
One thing we’re not confident about yet is just how big MPM-13 is, as thus far, there haven’t been any comparisons with other toys shown off! However, it appears to be pretty sizeable in the Weibo video, with the robot mode looking quite large overall. Expect this one to be a hefty lad.
#1: We may have an idea on the price though!
The Western retail price for MPM-13 has yet to be confirmed, but we know that Chinese pre-orders are already up for 1649 Yuan (a little over $250)! That might sound like a scary prospect for collectors, particularly if those photos are yet to convince you. Still, there may be hope in sight… apparently, a leaked Target listing in the USA is showing up as $157.99, which sounds much more reasonable! Here’s hoping, eh?
In any case, it’s still early days with this toy, and no doubt there will be a lot more information to come. However, speaking for myself, I’m feeling pretty intrigued about it so far, and I look forward to seeing how it progresses!
So, that’s our list! Are you excited about MPM-13 Blackout?