Of all the Transformers villains, few are as prominent, sinister, or interesting as Soundwave. From his impressive roots launching cassette tapes out of his chest in Generation 1, Soundwave has remained popular throughout the years. The character is more prominent and villainous in the Transformers Prime cartoon than it has ever been, and the newest Transformers Prime action figure release is a great addition to a young line, and one that represents the ever-devoted right-hand-robot of Megatron quite well.
Soundwave has a great vehicle mode, a smooth transformation, and a deadly-looking robot mode. He includes a Laserbeak figure that is easily incorporated into both modes. Soundwave also looks like he just stepped off the television screen, because he captures the on-screen appearance of the character surprisingly well. This is another surprisingly good release in the new Transformers Prime line, and a good sign of the things that are yet to come.
This Soundwave may not look the average Transformer, but the figure is better than the average Transformers.
- Name: Soundwave
- Line: Transformers Prime
- Series: Deluxe Class Class - Series 1: 004
- Manufacturer: Hasbro
- Scale: 5-inch
- Acccessories: Laserbeak
Sculpt and Design
Soundwave is the Transformers Prime character that strays the farthest from the Generation 1 roots of the characters. The on-screen design of the figure is far from the blocky and square designs of the '80s cartoon, whereas many other figures remain closer to their cartoon roots with blockier designs. Soundwave is lithe, robotic, and gangly, with sharp bits and a generally sinewy design. It makes the character look evil and unique, matching the more fluid look of its master Megatron instead of the more reserved styles of Wheeljack or Cliffjumper, for instance.
The figure captures the sharp and technical design with surprising precision. The figure is long and slim, with angular elements jutting out left and right. It's an interesting visual, and a strong contrast to the Autbots in the line. One defining elements of the character on the show is its long and flat arms, which are perfectly represented in plastic with this figure.
Despite the sharp and unusual robot form, the alternate mode of the character looks smooth and realistic. It's a recon drone, essentially a spy plane, which is both appropriate for the character and attractive in its execution.
The Laserbeak accessory, a small robot which Soundwave utilizes as a spy, fits onto the chest or arm of the character quite naturally in robot mode, and stealthily fits onto the drone's back in the vehicle mode. It's a well designed and cleverly implemented accessory that adds a lot to the figure's look.
Paint and Color
Soundwave is primarily cast in a cool blue plastic color, but also features black segments as well. The blue matches the color of the on-screen character nicely, and comes across well regardless of the light to which the figure is subjected. This is a perfect color that looks smooth and visually engaging no matter the environment.
The few paint applications which are featured on Soundwave are clean and applied with a deft hand. The face's paint is crisp and easily identified, while the random areas of purple/pink highlights are bright and eye-catching. The figure doesn't feature quite as much purple/pink line-work as the character on the show. Thankfully it's a small issue that only hurts the appearance in a very minor way.
Articulation and Posing
When in robot mode, Soundwave is surprisingly well articulated. This figure continues the trend of increasingly-articulated Transformers figures with a wide array of joints that make it easily posed and very friendly for play.
All the expected leg joints are there, and the arms articulate well despite their odd shape and length. It takes some creative thinking to make sure the arms look natural due to the joint placement, but with a little work, the character poses beautifully while maintaining a show-accurate appearance.
The Soundwave transformation is anything but simple, but it's never frustrating or too difficult when using the included transformation guide. It's easy to learn by memory, and all the joints move smoothly during the process.
The Transformers Prime line is full of exciting and well made figures in its early stages, and Soundwave is another great release for the line. It's a fun figure with a unique look, with a great transformation and easy-to-enjoy mode of play. A Transformers collector won't be disappointed with Soundwave, regardless of the figure's abandonment of the classic Transformers look, because this is a solid figure no matter how it's viewed.