Category Archives: RID



It never ends.

You collect a thing, grow bored of it, sell it off, buy it again, retire it, recycle it, repeat it.

Buy it sell it move it break it junk it eat it. Collect-ology.

over 9000 dr evil vegeta money


The perfect collection eludes us. While some folks will complete a particular line, a particular year of toys – for most of us it never ends.

Something is always in storage. Something is always about to be sold or traded. Or given to the op-shop.

Something else we are just about… thinking about… *MAYBE* selling…. because it means we can get something new shiny and different in its place.

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Something is always on display, until it gets crowded and gets downsized or upsized, or sold, or put in storage. Or we move house, start or end a relationship, whatever.

The perfect collection eludes all but the most rich and spacious among us, or those of us with more modest choices and restraint in what we collect and how we display it.

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My own style is more Gonzo than anything. I have little if any restraint, if I want something I buy it even when I have no damn space for it. I’ve never been a completist. I buy whatever interests me, and if I lose interest in something I move on to something else.

The best I can do sometimes is “Desire Substitution” = I can pass over some collectible in favor of something I really want, switching in something I want EVEN MORE, thus using the money that would have gone on one thing, for another.

I could have bought more third party pricey Transformers recently – but instead I went with NECA 1990 Movie Mikey and have no regrets there. I enjoyed that super-duper-bodacious-impressive figure so much that I even sold off some old N64 video games to assist in buying the other figures – as I simply could not afford to buy them outright – at least not before all the old stock goes worldwide from this limited run of amazing figures that trump just about anything else I’ve seen in the last decade of toys.

big mikey playmates neca movie toon comparison sideways

Some items I can pass over purely on price, while others like the large scale TMNT 1990 Movie Turtles are so amazing that the large price tag feels justified, the quality is high and I can gladly sacrifice some smaller purchases in favor of a few bigger purchases.

That the big NECA Movie Turtles replicate the most realistic looking live action turtles from the 1990 movie gives it that added emotional connection for me, elevating it from simply being an amazing sculpt and details, to really looking like the character walked right off the screen and into my home.



My biggest purchase of the year (in size and dollars) was Fan Toys Omega Supreme. Omega is in my all time personal TOP 5 Transformers characters that Rock to Infinity and Beyond. If you disagree he will laser pistol-whip you into next week faster than you can say SARCASM: UNAPPRECIATED.

Sacrificing other smaller purchases to bring home this big bad BOSS BOT was absolutely worth it. I planned to put him on a shelf of his own but didn’t get around to buying that shelf before Omega arrived. *Whoops*

So I re-arranged this mad lot and stuffed him next to Fort Max and Metroplex, and it’s pretty amazing to see these three iconic toys/ characters together. Only took me an hour. And YES his wings are wedged slightly against the roof. Which works in his favor as like his giant robo-brethren he is topple-worthy. and yes this is the top of a closet and I climbed up down on a rickety chair about 30 times, and also while holding one of the heaviest transformers of all time with extended arms. I live to live dangerously?

MISSION: Obtain the last Omega Sentinel. SUCCESS: IMMINENT

Lately I’ve been wanting to set up more active interesting displays, rather than random groupings of unrelated toys – with a particular theme or scene and Mega Bloks / Mega Construx has been a boon in that regards.

Except for the random shelf…

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Not so Random Shelf

I can set up a microcosmic little scene of tiny figures and have all kinds of cool fun stuff going on, and it’s really easy to re-arrange them into a different configuration without too much fuss. Just don’t drop them or their weapons – they are so tiny they bounce away and are hard to find on the floor.

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Smell ya later Shred Head!

Another fun thing about the Mega Bloks figures is their size means you can use them with various small scale playsets – like the Micro Mutants Garage sets I picked up on clearance on a whim. Turns out the scale works quite well with the Mega Bloks figures.

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The sets are simple and cheap plastic that clip together, but they do have some nice details, the wall below for example will look even better with a lick of paint to highlight the pipes and ducting (when I get around to it).

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Likewise another of my favourite repurposed toys I got in 2017 (from my Dad while on holiday in NZ) is the Batman ’66 Diecast Batcycle. It’s not made for any type of figures, but Mega Bloks Mutants don’t care about rules, they steal whatever pleases them.

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It’s one way to travel in style to their side gig as bouncers at the KTV Bar. Another toy thing I repurposed was this knock-off brand of Lego…thing. It looks good and it was cheap (and the pizza themed one is still yet to arrive).

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1/2 Price Mutagens on Saturday Nights lures in the crowds

So the Mega Bloks figures are great fun, and I really dig them. The Small scale means you can mix and match a few different things with ease. Until I buy too damn many and my shelf runs out of space.

Well I still have one designated spot to fill with an entire new shelf partly reserved for more Mega Construx and other TMNT stuff. And what a delightful headache it is – the toys that argue for dominance and pole position on that theoretical shelf that  currently exists only in my mind.

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Many times I have laid awake at night choosing what will go on each level. The bottom levels are reserved for book and comics, while all upper levels are game for collectibles, with the very top reserved for anything truly titan sized that won’t fit in other places, and might look damn imposing towering over you as you walk into the room. It’s a good kind of problem, a fun problem to have – unlike real world everyday problems.

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Also at the smaller scale end of things are Transformers from various lines, united in their Mischief Making abilities. Mucking about with Sharkticons and their *unofficial* new tiny leader was tremendous fun, I spent a couple weeks tinkering with display options until I settled on having the loose theme of claws, jaws and mischief makers together, the smallest scale and the largest in one fun display.

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Once I had the idea of what I wanted, I moved this unruly lot to the shelf. Then I added in a decepticon faction logo above the Energon Cube Throne. Chucked in some TR and RID mini-figues, some bootleg Kremzeek toys, light sabre and axe for the bigger Sharkie guards.

Frenzy rules energon throne

And the mighty Trypticon towers over them all, with various small scale toys on his back and underneath him. Despite the silly Q.C issues, Trypticon was one of my fav toys of 2017, just for his dino-display potential.

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With his mouth stuffed with Energon Cubes, he’s all set to gorge himself.

michief makers incorporated CONS just want to have fun decpticons

Other small scale toys I really enjoyed were the Penny Racer (aka Choro-Q) style Rescue Bots toys, a nice little nod to the old Takara-TOMY style mini-vehicles. If you have 1 and 3 step transformers, then these are ZERO step Transformers. Just tilt them up and they go into bot mode, tilt them down and they transform themselves back to vehicle mode. It’s a neat simple gimmick that I really like, and I plan to get a few more of them yet.

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If there is one thing I’ve enjoyed more than anything else lately, it’s mixing up different toys and putting them together. It’s that kind of simple play most of us enjoyed as kids. Toys were not segregated like in Toy Story 3, they played together joyfully like in Toy Story#1.

Of all the toy photos I’ve taken over the last couple years, the one that always brings  a smile to my face is that small movie Spider-Man and G1 Beachcomber riding a KO Alternator Hound getting irate at the inconvenience of an animal crossing.

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On the dining room table. No fancy background, no tricky lighting – just a quick snap with a camera. It always makes me laugh. For anyone paying attention, there’s a tiny Soundwave driving.


While partly I’ve been aiming to have a more cohesive collection in terms of things that go together – some things do not go together, and that’s where you’ve got to make your own fun. I love Dinosaurs and TMNT since forever.

Back in the late 90s there some ridiculous toys released called “Cave Turtles” that rode on big Dinosaurs. When I found these cheap Toy Story small scale dino toys below, well one thing lead to another…


Mixing things together is its own kind of fun. If there is one thing that is really driving my collecting habits more this year – it’s toys themed around 1980s and early 90’s cartoons and media.

I’m keen to pick up some Thundercats Classics figures (a modern toy line) and a few modern He-Man toys – mainly the villains – if I can find them for reasonable prices that is. Plenty of other collectors want the same toys, which drives the prices up.

With my focus shifted from purely Transformers to 80’s toys, there is a danger I may just bull all sorts of stuff I end up selling. But I feel confident that I can focus on having just the main characters of say He-Man and Thundercats sharing  display space with Ninja Turtles and a select few Transformers- keeping the 1980’s alive one toy at a time. I care about the CHARACTERS and their stories and personalities, more than any specific toy.



I don’t care to keep everything in its own little section, so my mega bloks mix it up with Lego. Mega Bloks movie Leo is in a Lego van slicing up pizza, Mike’s enjoying a nice slice with a Minion, the Punisher is about to shoot shredder from the top of the turtle van.

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…and rock star Lego Batman is hiding stealthily in the corner rocking out, with Raph doing a one armed pizza gymnast routine.

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…and Gladiator bootleg Lego Hulk is on a rampage

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…and I don’t really know what’s going on here, but that dog looks suspicious. Not a fairy Batman meth lab for sure.

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I’m not done with Transformers yet, but I get the impression a year from now I will be. Power of the Primes is coming up in 2018 in Australia. For sure I’ll get the Dinobots and Terrorcons and Predacons, the various femme-bot and Leader Optimus Prime / Orion Pax, and no doubt a couple of others. But apart from them and G1 Overlord, there is bugger all else I really want in my TF collection. The odd amazing third party… thing perhaps. But fewer of them, and less often thanks. I’m keen to some toy repaints, but I need to find a dedicated space in this Dust Palace where I can not get paint on everything.

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In 2018 I’m done with having more than say 3-5 pre-orders for things that take 6-12 months to arrive, or NEVER arrive at all – thank you third party, and thank you dodgy Australian online businesses that take money but #NEVERDELIVERS and won’t refund #ILLEGAL #WHOOPS #FUCKOURCUSTOMERS. No, I’m not mentioning the details here –  but many Australian collectors will know exactly what I am talking about and the less said, the better.

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In 2018 I’ll be focusing even more on TMNT, both modern and vintage lines of Playmates toys. The few I have picked up in recent months have brought me so much joy, in a way the never ending parade of Genericon Transformers toys just hasn’t.

There are key characters I want to own in Transformers, and I’d rather step back now and focus on those MICRO displays of key characters (such as the 1986 movie main Autobots) rather than just buying anything and everything that takes my fancy.

In 2018 I’ll be steering away from dodgy collectible retailers who run their businesses mainly on pre-orders and focusing on those ones that ACTUALLY DO DELIVER the product you pay for. Chasing refunds for missing items for six months or so is not fun, and by the time you get the refund, the toy you ordered a year ago has sold out everywhere, so you miss out. Those fuckers.

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I don’t regret buying any of the Transformers I have bought but I have no more space for them, so they all go into storage tubs. And I’m out of space even for storage tubs – which means I have to be more selective in what I get next year, and also let go of some under-appreciated toys due to space constraints. Refine and simplify. Find new ways to enjoy toys like taking photos and writing more blogs, and buying less total toys obviously.

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If there’s something I’m steering toward in 2018, it’s away from mindless acquisition of the new and the shiny, the mundane and ordinary and I’m heading towards more selective choice cuts of the meaningful and amusing, the whimsical and satisfying toys like Funko’s Disney Afternoon series, more vintage Playmates 1990 era TMNT toys.

My most favourite recent toy that I just adore is the Disney Afternoon’s McDuck. It’s a simple toy but it’s the bright cartoon colors that really bring it to life. It has a nice non-glossy finish that makes it a joy to look at every time, and brings out the animated Duck Tales style it emulates.

I don’t care so much about Baloo, Chip and Dale – mostly just McDuck and Darkwing Duck are my thing. But these figures are so impressive I may end up collecting the full line. With their small size and cheap price, there is no good reason not to.

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A good toy or memorabilia collection need not be varied or monotone in the
collection itself or how its displayed. What matters most to me in any type of collection is the personal meaning attached to the items in the collection.

Take these toys below for example that all turned up on the same day. There is a vintage Playmates Tokka from a dude in a Facebook TMNT OZ group, an old Cookie Monster toy from ebay and a Powerpuff Girl from TOYS R US that I found today at retail after many months of searching with no luck.

Treasures of the Day 2_1_18 tokka powerpuff cookie monster
C is for “Chomp” and “Claws”

I’m an unashamed fan of Sesame St. While I have not watched it for many
years, if I watch a clip of any episode now – I enjoy it. Old or new episodes, Sesame St does some of best the writing and comedy in television. PERIOD.

People assume I’m joking when I say that, but I’m not. I love the Muppets and Fraggle Rock and anything Jim Henson or Henson workshop related (hello live action 1990 TMNT Movie Magic). The characters are as timeless and iconic and memorable as any other fiction or childrens entertainment. The Henson stuff to me is a cut above, it’s more intelligent, it works on multiple levels and its engaging. It’s just plain better than a lot of other mindless soul-less entertainment made for kids.

Recently I found a mixed lot of Sesame St toys going on ebay quite cheap. I bought them as there were no other bidders, but I mainly wanted the lot for a couple of the old BP Sesame St toys that I used to have the full set of as a kid, and would very much like to collect and enjoy again.

The other Sesame St toys I don’t want from that lot I will most likely pass on to my partners younger nieces, after I check that they are safe and clean etc. Can’t be giving no crack addicted Bert and Ernie to kids ya know. They gotta be clean.

thermidoor yo

While I enjoy the odd upmarket fancy pants bullshit collectible, I PREFER TOYS TO BE TOYS, so my aim is always to have fun with collecting toys – be it Transformers, Ninja Turtles or whatever. The RID line has been great fun with some wicked transformations and I’m sad to see it die along with the RID show in 2017.

While I missed out on the Masterpiece Soundwave I ordered about six months ago that never turned up due to a dodgy Australian retailer who had ripped off many a collector – (and all my Alf Stewart fist waving and shouting of FLAMING MONGRELS both on and offline accomplished little)  – I did *finally* get to enjoy Titans Return Leader Class Soundwave – and I picked up the Repro sticker set for him which looks great, but mainly I got it for the Dancitron Base Mode stickers which emulate the nightclub Starscream and Soundwave took over in an old cartoon episode called Auto-Bop.

soundwavery stickery

Here’s to the end of 2017, and a bright and shiny and New and Old and Dusty and Vintage 2018 to enjoy and look forward to. Eight days into this new year and I’m already swamped with new and old Turtle toys, TAK MALL Ginrai and some other junk that do doubt I will ramble on about soon enough. Still waiting on my giant non-Transforming Megaton, Fans Hobby Scourge / Black Convoy and some other dirty bastards.



Oh and here’s my favourite toy of 2017. It’s an Australian Koala and her baby in a tree.

Koala’s are amazing, I’ve seen a fair few in the wild and they are incredible animals, and yes super-cute. I’m not fucking about, I think it’s brilliant and if you don’t agree then you Sir are cold and dead inside, and quite possibly a monster or a hideous disgusting mutant robot. If you ARE a voo-doo robot monster… I’ll find out.

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BOTFAN JOHN watches Robots in Disguise 2015 Season One

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I’ve been slowly working my way through every Transformers TV show ever made over the least year or so (as you do).

Previously I had only watched the 80’s Marvel/Sunbow show, the 1986 theatrical film, and a few episodes (but not all) of Beast Wars.

While I’ve seen random episodes of various shows over the years, I have not followed/watched any Transformers show since…

well since when I was a kid really.

Mostly due to work / life commitments, but also out of general disinterest for most of the shows (or lack of options to watch any of them). Plus those years where I did not own a television and wandered the earth like Caine in Kung-Fu.

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This IS my happy face!


Now in 2017 I am spoilt for choice.

Home PC, Tablet and fancypants TV – all of which I use to watch various shows.

Cartoons in particular look great on the small HD tablet screen, and subtitles are easier to read. As of April this year, I have now watched all of:

Transformers: Prime

Transformers Animated


Headmasters [sub]

half of Master Force and Victory, [sub]

few episodes in to Beast Wars,

Car Robots and Beast Wars II [sub]

While I am still working through some of the Japanese shows, I’ve just finished watching RID 2015 Season 1 – with no real prior knowledge of the show – other than still images online, and the odd toy I have picked up from the lines. Yes I am a toy addict, and buy way too many TF toys, so this show has me picking up even more.

Before you ask, I do intend to watch the “Unicron Trilogy” – last of all

…as I have a brain I *wish* to continue using and know the risks of it turning to mush while watching said non-trilogy.

May go with the native language of those shows too and hopefully my brain will not melt into a pile of protoplasmic goo during the process. But don’t get your hopes up too high, I’m not a miracle-bot.

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So far for a show aimed at a younger audience that I really did not have much expectations for – I’m loving this show.

It’s colorful, vibrant and fun. It’s funny, like Transformers Animated was. It’s exactly the kind of kids / all ages show that  I enjoy.

Because I’m stupid like that. Or smart. Take your pick.


While I get some “fans” (COMPLAIN-A-TRON alert!) are not into it – as a fan of not just Transformers, but all forms of animation and super-robots – I can say that with super confidence and an invincible clenched fist ready to destroy my enemies in just one punch…


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…that RID 2015 is a really smart, well written, entertaining show that engages its audience.

Robots in Disguise uses character archetypes well, it uses character silhouettes and rather importantly COLOR very well. It might seem overly simple to say it here, but those factors are immensely important in creating animated characters that resonate with young children in televison and cinema.

Disney know this. Pixar knows. Studio Ghibli know this.

In fact I’d even say the visual design, color schemes and highlights are better than any other Transformers show in existence.

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Transformers Prime was a beautiful show too but it’s muted color palette, older age demographic, mature themes and desert-apocalypse-sheik visuals make it not so appealing to younger kids. I would have loved it as a kid, but then I like dark fucked up shit, horror and existentialist movies etc.

And I am sure there are plenty of kids that DO love TF:Prime, but it was the most mature sort of stories and themes we’ve seen yet in a Transformers… anything…outside of the 1986 movie, and, well, parts of Beast Wars. Yeah Beast Wars was the first of the TV shows to do more mature themes in a kids show, got to give credit where it’s due.

Anyway, you know what I’m getting at. In Transformers: Prime Bumblebee stabs Megatron in the chest with a giant sword! Predacons try to eat everything. Optimus died again. The earth was nearly terraformed into another Cybertron, yadda yadda yadda – the show was kinda dark thematically and visually.

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Moving on…

Robots in Disguise (yes the colorful one) is like Skittles and primary colored Transformers got together inside the Willy Wonka factory and exploded. It’s a day-glo technicolor dreamcoat of wild unfettered imagination. It has the cel-shaded visuals on top of 3D high polgyon count models look I love, with glowy-TRON inspired highlights giving us that beautiful energon glow that the War for Cybertron games were famous for.

The show is so pretty that I had to use “glow” in that last sentence twice, and I refuse to remove it, despite being terrible, terrible grammar.

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“TRON? Never heard of it fella”
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If Transfomers: Animated was a love letter to the franchise, then Robots in Disguise is an addendum to that love letter.

The subtle influences and easter eggs in RID  were a welcome surprise for me. Odd nods to other shows and obscure characters. Like in one episode – a minor non-essential to the plot mini-con happens to look like a tiny cute version of Destron leader Deathsaurus from the JG1 Victory cartoon.

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Anyhow, the colors!

RID is terribly successful at being bright and gaudy and catching the eye of its younger target audience in the show and toyline.

And that to me is a key part of what makes it great. Younger kids don’t have the finer discretion that adults do. They are more immediately engaged with their environment and all types of play. Most adults are turned off by either the art, or “kiddie” tone of the show, and may miss that it also has consistently good storytelling and character design at its heart, with all the other bells and whistles on top of that.

I prefer my Mad Max to Powerpuff Girls generally speaking, but hell I love both with a passion, each has its own purpose and equally beautiful unique rich aesthetic. You might think they are totally different things. But they are not. They are both “hero/heroine” stories in different clothing.

mad max fury road max furyiosa powerpuff girls 1

I’m a story and character person.

I don’t care who made it, what it’s about or whatever.

Give me boring characters but a great story and I will read/watch it.

Give me a terrible production but with some amazing character who really pulls you into that world, and I’ll take a look.

Give me both and I am not leaving the house until I’ve finished that story. Sorry outside world, you can get fucked. Well at least until I’m done. I may need food and Robo-Snacks from time to time.

But some folks can’t see past a certain aesthetic, or a certain gimmick or hook, or a particular new interpretation of an old character they love – and so they miss out on good stuff that they may really enjoy because they never give it a chance.

I am not saying if you are diehard adult G1 fan that you will enjoy RID. Most likely you will not, based on the comments I’ve seen online from the more hardcore old school fans. I happen to BE one of those fans too, (I was born in 1980) but I also love other stuff.

Why limit myself? Why waste time hating anything? It’s just toxic, I’m too busy enjoying life and fun cartoons and toys.

the plays the thing


I don’t care who likes what or why. But it does bother me sometimes to read ignorant opinions about what Transformers media “should” or “should not be”.

As if everything should be made purely for specific fans, only to please them. It’s a rather immature and selfish attitude imo. It’s fine to have discretion and good taste. I get it. It’s fine to nit pick about shitty toys that fall apart in the damn packet. That’s quite legitimate in my world view. But some fans seem to think they should be consulted personally on everything that happens, as if they were CEO of Hasbro or something.

tell him hes dreaming whats he asking

However, Robots in Disguise was not made for me, nor older TF fans, yet – I still love it.

I love it like I love classic Disney Donald Duck cartoons, or the more modern Duck Tales, or Astro Boy or like I love Brad Bird’s Iron Giant film. RID is a cartoon that wears it influences on its sleeve. (And I am not saying those particular things are an influence at all, well maybe a little Iron Giant….).


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In contrast to our heroes, the CONS in this show are a rag tag non-group of escaped convicts spread throughout the country. Our heroes track them down one by one, usually getting their asses kicked by the tougher, more skilled and ruthless Con of the week. It’s a similar formula to that used in Transformers: Animated, and it works.

Adding a little spice to the mix are the varied Decepticon designs, which are mostly vehicle alt modes, with Beast-Bot modes. It’s an odd mix of Carbot and Beast, but it works. While our heroes are fairly standard humanoid designs the CONS are a diverse mix of weirdo’s and oddities.

A tree frog, a reindeer, wolf, giant worm-insect thing, a crab, a lobster guy named “Bisk” a dragon-eagle and host of other unique cool characters that make each encounter / battle between the Cons and Bots a little bit special. I didn’t even mention the mini-cons, who are both weapons and plot devices throughout the series.

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The basic set up of RID is that some Autobots are accidentally stranded on earth (what are the chances?) and a prison ship of Decepticons has left stasis pods all over the place, and the Autobots track down a CON-of-the-week.

Our heroes live in a junk/scrapyard and are pretty much adopted and protected from the world at large by junkyard dweller Denny and his son Russell. These autobots are pretty green (inexperienced)  often losing in battle, forcing them to evolve better solo and team tactics. There is room for the characters to develop, and episodes play out great as solo stories, but also inter-connect like one long animated movie, similar to how Transformers: Prime rolled when it was on our screens.

The tone of the show is light hearted and fun, but more serious when it comes to battles.

Look at that grim menace from Fracture below! These CONS don’t mess around and kick a lot of Autobot-behind on a daily basis.

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Another element of the show I really enjoy is RID’s unashamed nostalgia and goofiness. It’s most apparent with Denny Clay – who lives in a junk yard full of Americana.


Curios, oddities and forgotten antiquities from America’s most successful economic years in the post World War II years litter his mancave / sanctum sanctorum.  This junk is better than money, gold or Treasure to Denny – they are artifacts and cultural knick nacks and out dated technology and raw materials for his inventions and contraptions. They also provide a convenient hiding space, and a place to train for the Autobots on the outskirts of the city.

The scrapyard is a strangely relevant idea for a Transformers show and yet rather odd. The only reason the core of the show is set in the junkyard, is that the Autobots ship is stranded there. Otherwise it just comes across as one of those wacky writer ideas somebody threw at a wall:

“Hey, what if they live in a junk yard?”

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It sounds stupid, but again, it works. Robots in Disguise: super-cybertronian tech – surrounded by earth junk and outdated technology. RID seems to specialize in the unorthodox, and is a better show for it. It takes chances and mostly succeeds.

Denny is like a visual mash up mix of comic actor Zach Galafiniakis and noted Transformers expert (Transformarian?) Chris McFeely – and Denny sometimes dresses like Magnum P.I. cosplaying Indiana Jones, as well as other odd “disguises”.

I swear I’m not making any of that up, just look at the screen grab here and below.

And I swear I have never EVER abused the power of the internet to ask annoying fanboy questions of Chris McFeely… far as you know.

Denny’s taste in fashion -like everything else – is antiquated and eccentric and loveable and unique. He also happens to possibly be named after the guy who named Optimus Prime. How that’s for obscure fan trivia.

Okay, so that’s not true. I totally made that bit up. I kind of wanted it to be true though, would have been cool. He’s REALLY named after those god awful diners where you can get rubbish food and bad service any time you like. And he really DOES look like a mash up of McFeely and Galafiniakis.

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Two “Orion Pax Combo’s” to go thanks Mista!


Denny is the cliche prototypical lost in his own thoughts do-it-yourself backyard boffin mechanic/inventor who often works with Autobot Fixit on various projects.

He’s scatter brained, rambles on about stuff lost in his own world, kind of reckless how he keeps endangering his own son with his stupid projects and reckless ways. But he’s also a big kid at heart, and smart with anything mechanical.

Oh, this is Fixit if you didn’t already know…



Fixit is a roughly human sized bot who is a good friend to Denny and Russell, when he is not also endangering their lives…he pretty much takes the place that Bumblebee traditionally has in Transformers fiction, with a soft spot for humans. Fixit is also a mechanical /engineering genius, but he has brain damage, and the one time Denny tried to fix him, Fixit tried to kill everyone, so Fixit lives on and makes peace with his defects.

Denny is mechanically smart, and a very loving nurturing father. He’s also his own worst enemy in that Doc Brown sort of way, where he just happens to be regularly working with dangerous things that could easily kill him.

doc brown

But what modern man doesn’t crave at least a little danger? I can think of mates who tinker in their own back yards, usually solo with heavy equipment and cars and what have you, and often with things that are quite dangerous. Yet they do alright.

The junkyard, aka The Treasure Yard or just  “Fortress of Socialization”, is also a mini-fortress, a base and well….

….um….. Home.

A home for Denny, his son Russell and the Cybertronian refugees who are stuck on earth, well at least the Bots (and one former Con, Grimlock) who reside there. They are a family of sorts, who always support each other, despite their differences. Their bravery and naivety go hand in hand.

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The latest Cosplayers from ComiCon



I love that Robots in Disguise emphasizes simple life lessons and moral stories, it’s a show that allows room for its lead characters to make mistakes, and learn from those mistakes. These Bots are not battle hardened soldiers. There is room to breathe, to explore new territory in this show.

The Autobots are green, inexperienced blunderers, who basically learn one mistake at a time, and they are terrible at fighting. Like, woefully incompetent.

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“I may have glowy bits, but I am utterly useless in combat”

So terrible that half way thorough the the first season, the lack of fighting skills from our Autobot heroes really started to bother me. The way they charged recklessly into battle, making the same stupid mistakes over and over, getting their whole teams robo-behinds kicked by one measly Con, damn it was irritating! And repetitive. I started to think it was some greedy/lazy writing.

But then as the story progressed, the characters started using more strategy in their battle, and they started fighting better in close range, instead of like a pack of un-coordinated idiots.

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“Be on the look out for a giant green Dinosaur in the port, he is Captionless, repeat, Caption-Less”

So this gang of no hopers who could not fight their way out of a paper bag…

I realized just how GREEN these guys (and gals) were, and that their lack of combat experience was an essential element of the show. It gives more room for the characters to grow in different directions. Their cups are empty rather than overflowing.

We already know Grimlock is a big strong bruiser, but what happens when a smaller opponent merely sidesteps his attacks? He has to get smarter in his attack, and use effective teamwork to succeed – not unlike team sports – where incremental skill progression both on and off the field is necessary to improve both as a single unit, and as part of a team. It’s a joy to see these slack-jawed bumblers improve throughout the season into a real team of kick ass Autobots.

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When fembot Strongarm faces down Steeljaw, and he expects another easy win to his (and our surprise) not only does Strongarm hold her own, but totally dominates her opponent who is double her size in height and likely stronger too. Previously Strongarm was among the worst in combat, but with persistence, practice and determination she improves, and takes advantage of her foes over-confidence.

I genuinely enjoyed that masterful fight scene as much as I’ve enjoyed a good Ronda Rousey fight in days gone by in the UFC. I was literally jumping out of my seat and cheering on Strongarm.

To see Strongarm move beyond her old limitations and progress and learn new ways  of being, of expressing herself themselves is just awe-inspiring. I also love that we now have a modern Transformers show with a strong tough female character who can stand side by side with any of the male characters and not look weak or pathetic, or be the boring “damsel in distress” cliche. Well two fembots characters, Windblade is in the mix now too in later episodes.

Transformers Robots in Disguise 2015 CONS thunderhoof overload 2
Transformers Robots in Disguise 2015 CONS thunderhoof overload



However you look at it, RID has a lot of heart (or Spark if you prefer).

It’s fun colorful and nostalgic – yet contemporary.

It has engaging characters who grow and learn through each season.

RID is simply gorgeous, a visually stunning show that is super stylish and cool.

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Of course kids are growing (literally) and learning new things all the time, I wish more adults were like that. As human beings, we never stop learning, and I believe that the more open and loving and happy we are in life, the more enjoyable life is. One you stop playing, you stop learning, you get old and boring and rigid very fast.

Robots in Disguise is a happy show. RID is surprisingly very smart and well made.

It’s the opposite of cynical lazy shows made on a super low budget. The characters are wonderfully expressive, the body language is masterful and the fights have real impact to them, you can really feel the weight of the characters smashing together. It’s got fun, vibrant memorable characters, and the most diverse innovative original CONS yet seen in any Transformers show so far.

RID has passion, guts and heart (and great action and humor).

What more could you ask for?


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CONFESSION TIME: Confession time: I finished Robots in Disguise Season One while writing this article and started binging on Season 2, and could not resist adding some images from those episodes, so you caught. Now hand me my cup of dark energon poison and shut up already, I got me shows to watch.