Bioroid Invid Fighter
Review by Modcineaste
Bioroid Invid Fighter
Review and Photos by Leonardo Flores
“Robotech” and “Matchbox” are two words, when put together, bring out some strong opinions, especially if you were around when Matchbox released their Robotech Defense Force line of action figures and vehicles in 1985. The toy line, which only lasted one year, consisted of various ranges of quality from brilliant (Invid, Battles Pods, Hover Tanks) to passable (Dana Sterling, Scott Bernard) to down right dreadful (Robotech Master, Corg). The line also suffered with availability problems with an over production of some figures to other figures that were near impossible to locate or unreleased. If you started to collect the line in 1986 there is a feeling of unfinished business with the RDF line of action figures and vehicles that is still frustrating to Robotech toy collectors to this day.
Going against my better judgment, I still try to locate and purchase these toys when I see them, not only for review here on CollectionDX but to also say to Matchbox, “Hey Matchbox morons, I am not going to let you beat me!” I must say that as much resentment I still have towards this toyline, I am still the only person here on CDX to review any of these toys. I do not know what that says but it must mean something.
CDX Summit 2012 I was fortunate to purchase from Mr. Mecha Gear himself, David A. White, his original Matchbox Bioroid Invid Fighter. This was actually on the top of my list of RDF toys I was trying to locate, as it was the last RDF Southern Cross related toys I needed to review for CDX. Although locating the figure is not very difficult, it is finding one with the laser gun still with the figure that was the obstacle, as they are usually missing.
Matchbox released a series of mid priced, medium sized mecha figures, larger than the action figures but smaller than the deluxe sized vehicles. Over time it is these mid priced figures that I feel have stood the test of time and grown into being some classic anime toys. These include four Macross Destroids, two Zentradi battle armors and the red Invid. All of the other figures are classic except this one, the “Bioroid Invid Fighter” from the Robotech Masters portion of Robotech that is suppose to represent Zor Primes/Seifriet Weibe’s “Sol” powered armor from Super Dimension Cavalry Southern Cross.
While the other medium sized figures are fairly accurate representations of their respective line art as kids toys go, it was the Bioroid Invid Fighter that completely missed the mark with some long-term repercussions. So “How did Matchbox mess this one up?” you ask. Unfortunately the fine people at Matchbox used a prototype concept line art drawing from Southern Cross to base their tooling off of, resulting in a toy of a mecha that was never in the anime.
To add insult to injury, the resulting sculpting is not too appealing, making the very stoic and mysterious Sol into some funky ape looking robot with oversized arms and thin hip spacing. To force myself to say something positive about this release the box art was well done and the articulation was not half bad for the time, including moveable head, waist, knees, legs and feet and shoulder, wrist and elbow movement. But that is like saying an Edsel has great mileage.
The often-missing gun is actually well sculpted and matches the anime very well. I will say it once and I will say it again, the engineer who designed and tooled up the weapons should get some kind of recognition for actually watching the anime and doing an excellent job in reproducing the weapons. Please note that the gun is actually made of a hard rubber/ABS and not plastic.
This figure was designed to be used with in the Bioroid Hover Craft but unfortunately mine is in storage and I was not able to get to it for this review.
When it comes down to it, who wants a toy of a mecha that was never in the anime and it not being a good toy at that? Like some of these Robotech RDF toys, I did not buy this because I actually wanted it but instead so I can review the last RDF Southern Cross toy here on CDX, although it is nice to finally have one in my collection. The long-term repercussion is that in 2013 nearly 30 years after the release of Super Dimension Cavalry Southern Cross, only one representation of the Sol has been released, a very rare model kit produced by LS when the anime first aired. This could have been the much-needed second Sol figure but it is not, due to Matchbox not really researching their product line well enough while in development, which is typical of RDF toy line. Overall the other seven medium sized figures were beautifully done and perhaps the highlight of the entire RDF line, I just sincerely wished Matchbox had gotten this one right back in 1985.
©2013 Photos and review by Leonardo Flores CollectionDX.
|Posted 28 January, 2013 - 20:10 by Modcineaste|