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Tuesday, 27 May 2014

KFC E.A.V.I Metal Citizen Stack [1st Issue] - Pictorial Review

This review is way over due, am really sorry bout that. Most of you have already known that Takara is releasing MP-22, the iconic character, Ultra Magnus. But back when the news was just a rumor, Keith's Fantasy Club (KFC) announced that they are releasing an MP figure homaging G1 Ultra Magnus, dubbed Citizen Stack (based on the name of Ultra Magnus voice actor in 1986's movie, Robert Stack).


Pic Credit : TFWiki

Not an unfamiliar face. Since Ultra Magnus made his debut in 1986, he's been one of the recurrent characters in Transformers universe, From G1 US (Season 3-4), G1 Headmasters, Robots in Disguise, Animated, TF Prime and more. However, after G1, most of the time Ultra Magnus toys is just white Optimus Prime repaints.

In G1, Ultra Magnus has kind of an unconventional alt mode. While most Autobots have a domestic vehicle as their Alt Mode, Ultra Magnus transforms into a car carrier equipped with missiles, one on each side. Fitting his role considering how he regarded himself as nothing more than a soldier for the Autobots cause.



In Package

Before we proceed, it's worth mentioning that despite Takara's announcement on MP-22, KFC stick to their guns and proceed in releasing Citizen Stack despite knowing how much they are risking.


Citizen Stack comes in quite a big and long box with a large artwork of Citizen Stack on the front. The quality of the box is decent; however it is advisable to be careful with it.

Amazing artwork of Citizen Stack


At the back are few pictures of Citizen Stack in bot robot and alt mode, giving a glimpse on the product design. On the left is Citizen Stack character's bio.

Citizen Stack's Bio

As usual, Citizen Stack comes with a tech spec and a comic book/instruction sheet.

Tech Spec

Comic Book/Instruction Manual


Not going to reveal much about the story except that there are Sky Pirates in it and also, 2 characters that look like X-Transbot Krank and Stax.



Alt Mode


I was fairly surprised and excited with the sheer size of him, considering only MP-04 and MP-10 are at this size and both have a trailer that's not part of the robot themselves.


Taking him out of the package, I noticed that the plastic feels a bit 'hollow', especially the truck cab, not at all comparable to official Masterpiece figures. That's kind of disappointing, I have to say. I understand that this aren't official release and I had never imagined it'll feel like one but even though the overall feel of the plastic is better than their Not-Perceptor (Mugen Scope) figure, it's still not enough for a figure this size.


Now let's talk design. Yes, he is no doubt a homage to G1 Ultra Magnus. KFC did a good job in designing him, with all the detailing especially on the carrier and chrome rims. However, the detailings are what made him too different from official Masterpiece figures IMO. It might just be me but most Masterpiece figures have only moderate amount of detailing in alt mode, roughly not more than what are on their G1 toys. I might be wrong but from MP-22 prototype pictures, I think that it won't have Citizen Stack extra red detailing on the carrier. Again, I MIGHT BE WRONG.


Despite what I've mentioned above, I love the detailing. The red really highlight the details on the carrier. And, the paint apps are clean.



Lowering down the ramp will reveal Citizen Stack's fists which are visible from certain angle. And the connection of the hands that made up the upper ramp is kind of weak.


For those who doesn't know, the truck cab and the carrier can't be detached. However, the cab can still be turned a bit to the left and right.

The maximum angle


A sight that fans have been waiting to see for ages, since the release of MP-04. Optimus Prime and Ultra Magnus, in Masterpiece size, side by side in alt mode.


KFC did well in designing Citizen Stack's cab to be almost identical to MP-10 truck cab, with added front grill to make him slightly different.

Citizen Stack slightly shorter than Optimus Prime (MP-10)


The truck cab's back tires are a bit hidden, not even aligned with the front tires. Wish KFC did them differently.

With Masterpiece Prowl



Now let see how much space the carrier has.


On the lower level, only 1 Masterpiece can fit due to the Citizen Stack crotch and chest piece inside.

Lowering the ramp for upper level


Above, at most Citizen Stack can fit 2 Masterpiece cars but at an awkward position due to the design at the end of the upper lever. So, maybe just one Masterpiece car then.

Robot Mode


I've been loving Citizen Stack design since his first prototype picture was shown. And even after the release of MP-22 prototype pictures, I still favor Citizen Stack more.


Transformation to robot mode are quite simple but due to his size, it might take a bit longer (to properly transform him without anything banging the floor etc). There are few parts that worried me during transformation; which are the the truck cab connector and connector between his crotch and body. Both of these parts are quite thin and maybe prone to breaking if not handled carefully.

Side View


One of the things that I think better compared to MP-22 (based on initial prototype pictures) is that Citizen Stack is literally kibble free! The slander and clean looks is how I imagined Ultra Magnus should be rather than the bulkier MP-22.



Most of the complaints I saw is on Citizen Stack's face design. The face is too square for my taste and the large chin hinder his neck articulation a bit. Aside from that, Citizen Stack has really nice detailing.





Articulation wise, he's what I expected. The head is a ball joint, swivel and hinge on the shoulders, swivel and ratchet joint on the elbows, wrists swivel, waist swivel, universal joint on the thighs, ratchet joints on the knees and ball jointed feet.


The waist swivel is quite loose and Citizen Stack tend to turn swivel around easily. However, the ratchet joint on the knees are too tight and needed extra care when bending them.


Aside from those, Citizen Stack is a great figure to play with.



The only gimmick for Citizen Stack is that the chest can be opened revealing a compartment for the Matrix, based on 1986's movie.

Using MP-10's Matrix




This is the part that I'm not sure of. Ultra Magnus is expected to be bigger than Optimus Prime, that's a given. However, Citizen Stack towers Optimus Prime to a point that he's only at Citizen Stack waist/chest level.





Even the Matrix seems small in his hands with room only for one finger. However, scale is a tricky issue especially in Masterpiece line. So, it's up to individuals to decide.


I'm not a Masterpiece collector and never own any Masterpiece figure. What I can say is that Citizen Stack quality is a bit lower than it should be. Being a Masterpiece size figure, better quality is expected from him. If this was 3 years back, fans would drool all over him but with MP-22 coming, it's a different issue.

However, IF he was down-sized to CHURGs scale, I personally think he'd be a great Ultra Magnus, even better than FP City Commander. 







2 comments:

  1. my concern then truck cant u turn easily cause by the turning angle haha. thanks pierre andre opsss gema

    ReplyDelete
  2. my concern is when the truck gonna make a uturn. I believe i wont be that easy.

    ReplyDelete