And yet…I can’t explain it, but there’s just something appealing about some of these. Not the human/cyborg figures–they’re inexcusably bad. But I’ve become fond of the T-R.I.P., and pretty soon I realized I had to have a T-1 too. I mean, c’mon–it’s a robot with miniguns.
I suspect the T-1s are short-packed, but I found one at Target last night. This may be one of my fastest review turnarounds ever.
Origin point for Armageddon: the T-1 was the very first robotic killing machine designed by Skynet when humans were still in charge of their planet. Comparatively primitive but deadly and single-minded as any Terminator that came after it, this was the machine that killed Kate Connor’s father the day the bombs fell and the world changed hands. Indeed, with the T-1, there would be no Terminators at all.
Packaging: Due to its girth, the T-1 comes in pieces, but it’s very easily assembled. It features the same terrible flavor text on the back as the T-R.I.P.
Sculpt: Obviously, since this is a mass-market toy, the sculpt isn’t nearly as detailed as, say, this production sketch. Much like the endoskeletons, you almost always lose a ton of detail when you translate a complicated, detailed robot into a mass market figure.
However, the advantage of a robot is that, unlike a human, the lack of detail isn’t quite as obvious. Before I saw the production sketch, for all I knew this sculpt was completely accurate. It’s a simpler, more rough-and-tumble looking robot than the one in the production sketch, but it’s still pretty damned cool. It’s worth noting that the ammo belts are particularly well-detailed.
There is one catch–I’m not sure which way the damned thing is supposed to be facing! The production sketch and the included trading card seem to imply that the smaller third tread goes in the back, but the cross-sell photo on the package and the included instructions on assembling the figure place the tread on the front. Also, there are deep screw-holes in the non-treaded side, which certainly suggests to me that’s supposed to be the back. Besides, common sense suggests the tread would have to be in the front to provide any actual aid in maneuvering.
One last thing: I have no idea whether the T-1 is in scale with the other 6″ figures, because I couldn’t find a reference shot for comparison. My hunch tells me it’s a little undersized–maybe a lot undersized. But if so, then it should be in perfect scale with Playmates’ 3 ¾” Terminator line.
[Update: OK, after some further research, it appears the T-1 is incredibly under-sized (it should be about 7″ tall) and the mini-tread should be in the back. As Playmates clearly intended the tread to be in the front, I think I have to chalk that up to a sculpting mistake–and knock a half-raven off the final score. In any event, clearly this works much, much better with the 3 ¾” line.]
Plastic & Paint: The T-1 is molded in a dark gray plastic with a good metallic sheen. It looks quite good, really, suggesting that vaguely futuristic smooth-metal look.
There’s also some yellow-ish drybrushing on the lower part of the figure in an attempt to suggest dirt or mud. It’s clumsily applied, with obvious brushstrokes–the figure would have looked better without them.
I do wish there were some added paint applications around the top part, particularly the “headlights” and other details.
Articulation: The torso can twist back and forth, the guns swivel, the front tread swivels, and there are wheels under all the treads. The guns would have been better had they been mounted on ball-and-socket joints, though I’m unsure whether that would be accurate to the movie.
Accessories & Features: The T-1 features two missiles that can be fired from the guns–basically, the front of the miniguns can be shot off. Inaccurate to the movie? Probably. A nice gag for kids? Sure. Since the missiles are still sculpted to look like the front of the miniguns, it’s not really an issue.
There are wheels along the bottom of the T-1, and if you push it forward the upper part swings back and forth as if strafing some hapless Resistance fighters. Frankly, it’s kind of cool, particularly since it actually makes sense.
Quality Control: No issues.
At a price point of $9.99, the T-1 isn’t the best value; this is more like a $6-$7 figure. Still, it’s a rather fun little toy. It will work great as an all-purpose killer robot for just about any toy line, from G.I. Joe to DCUC; I can see the appeal of having an army of these things.