Knockoff Spotlight: Aerialbots
By Anthony Brucale
Many times during the last year or so, you may have seen
knockoff Aerialbots (or most other combiner teams) on eBay or at a local
toy convention or even your local K-Mart. Generally, these knockoffs have
cheaper plastic and stickers, but are emblazoned with the correct faction
sigils and right color schemes (see table right). Well, when it
comes to Aerialbots knockoffs, there's more than meets the eye.
Through the years, I've come across a number of interestng Aerialbot
knockoffs. For instance, in addition to the recent, accurrate knockoffs
(seen right), I've encountered similar knockoffs, with wholly
different sticker schemes, giving the figures a whole different look.
Below, a comparison of the new sticker knockoffs and the widely-available,
sticker accurate knockoffs:
The new sticker knockoffs can easily be found at National
Wholesale Liquidators stores and sell in 2-packs for $1.99. Below, you can
see these toys in their robot forms. They have other combiner knockoffs
as well, such as G2 Constructicons and Baldigus. Sadly, most of the combiner
parts have been removed and the main bodies for each combiner are unavailable
in the store.
One of the more interesting Aerialbot knockoffs I came across
at a flea market back in 1997. It was packaged in a box with the original
Japanese Transformers art on the front and sides and sold under the brand
name "Metamorphs". Inside was Skydive in teal, pink and purple
(See images right). Definitely not the right colors, but oh-so
strange. He even came with his gun!
The last, and possibly oddest, Aerialbots knockoff I've ever
seen is also the largest. I came across this back in 1998 at an indoor flea
market and couldn't resist plunking down $10 for this mess of cheap plastic
and garish colors. Though 2-3 times the size of a standard Aerialbot (maybe
even larger), this figure was carded (yes, carded) in combined form.
The giant Superion was entirely Superion, though he was a
giant (pictured left with standard sized knock-off for size-comparison).
His head had been remolded, he wielded Abominus' chestplate and gun, and
his mainbody was not comprised of Silverbolt, but of Scattershot placed
And if all that wasn't different enough, each individual figure
was a mishmash of color and barely held together by cheap plastic. Still,
the strangeness of this figure make it one of the most interesting knockoffs
I've ever seen. Below, images of the individual forms of each limb component
and knockoff-Scattershot in robot mode (with size-comparisons).
And don't forget to vote in this month's
poll as to what you'd like to see covered in next month's Knockoff Spotlight!
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