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Archive for the 'MB Transformers' Category

Transformers Chop Shop (MB)

A little while ago a very good collector friend of mine came through and made it possible for me to check off another item on my most wanted list. An MB Transformers Chop Shop! The colours on the box front have faded a little, but have done so in a very subtle and equally distributed way.


I am now down to the final 9 MB Transformers to complete my collection. You can check out my checklist and some photos of my current collection here. I have a lead on another MB item, which I really hope to score in the next couple of weeks, because it’s an item I’ve wanted for a long time. More on that if and when I do succeed in scoring it (don’t want to jinx it ;-). Anyway, I’m still on the look out for the following items:


Some more photos of cool vintage G.I. Joe and Masters of the Universe stuff I scored in the past few weeks coming up real soon!! Thanks for looking!

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MB Transformers series – Part 5

Anyone familiar with the MB Transformers line will know that Jetfire was initially the leader of the Autobots and not Optimus Prime. If you’ve ever wondered why that was, you’re not the only one. There’s a theory going round that explains this anomaly as the result of a trademark issue regarding the name Optimus Prime in the Netherlands. I think this long standing theory is incorrect.


I’ve done a lot of research over the past few months on this very subject (yes, sometimes I worry about my own sanity…) and I have found nothing to support this theory. Quite the contrary. I have come to the conclusion that the exact reason why Optimus Prime was not  initially planned for inclusion in the MB line is because of a different reason altogether and I wrote it all down in this 5th chapter of my series of articles on MB Transformers. Why devote an entire chapter to this subject? Well, for one, it is one of the more interesting issues in the MB line in my opinion and, two, it needs to be supported by a sturdy foundation of important information, which significantly adds to the length of the article, so it was not an option to include more topics in this installment.

I understand some people will choose to ignore my take on this, preferring to hold on to the trademark theory, but that’s perfectly fine! I believe I have outlined my case with many supporting arguments and from what I’ve seen so far, I think the trademark theory is wrong. Then again, new evidence might pop up one day proving my theory or parts of it wrong! All I’m saying is, this is what I think happened, and here’s why…. :-)

Tell me what you think in the comments section or by emailing me. Please enjoy the fifth installment on MB Transfomers by clicking here!


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Hail Jetfire! Leader of the Autobots!

I’ve had some really nice feedback on my last MB Transformers article and I’m really quite humbled by some of the reactions. It’s a real boost to find that fellow Transformers enthousiasts enjoy reading my musing as much as I enjoy writing them. I’m already a long way towards completing the 5th installment and contrary to what I originally had planned, this will not be an article about the introduction of Hasbro branded Transformers in Europe. Instead I have deciced that I will concentrate on another part of European Transformers history that I am most interested in investigating and that is MB Transformers mysteries and variants.


From a chronological standpoint it just makes a lot more sense to look at MB mysteries and variants (1985) first and to push back the article on Hasbro rebranding (1986) towards the end of the series. As I was doing research on the legal issues surrounding Optimus Prime’s release in Europe and the Jetfire leadership thing (in Europe, Jetfire was initially billed as leader of the Autobots in 1985!) I gained some new insights that further cement the theory in the 4th chapter and I will merge these back into that article as soon as chapter 5 is done.

So what are all those MB mysteries and variants then? Well, first of all there’s the issue of Jetfire being leader in the MB Transformers universe. As you will find, the explanation for this abnormality is closely tied to our famed maker of toys from Strasbourg called Joustra! Also, I believe the standing theory about it being related to an alledged trademark dispute about the name “Optimus Prime” in the Netherlands in 1985 is false. This really is such an intricate web of information that most of the the fifth installment will be dedicated to it. The remainder of this installement will look at the total of three (!) different Optimus Prime variants that MB released in 1985, so it’s really Optimus Prime’s party in the next installment of the article series on MB Transformers.

But there are many more mysteries surrounding the MB line to keep us occupied, that will follow in subsequent installments. There’s also the mystery of the Thundercracker/Starscream mixup, there’s the mythical MB Devastator gift set, the mystery of the MB Swoop, the case of the missing MB Autobot car and yellow Constructicons. All these mysteries and variants will be examined in the next few chapters so stay tuned. Who said MB Transformers were boring? :-) Have a great weekend!


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MB Astrotrain

Recently I managed to add another MB Transformer to my collection! Decepticon Triple Changer Astrotrain is the latest addition and was obtained as part of a trade that I made with a very good collector friend of mine, who is also based in the Netherlands. The box has some wear, but it’s still in reasonably good shape. It came with a custom insert, but that’s easily replaced with an original insert as soon as I manage to locate one.


With this latest addition my MB Transformers collection is now 81% complete and it’s really starting to become an uphill climb. Of the 53 officially released retail items, I’m now only missing 10. I’m going to have to think about some new strategies to obtain these remaining 10 items, because it’s getting increasingly hard to find items I am missing. Of course this is not entirely surprising, because that’s the way it goes. When you have nothing it’s easy to find items here and there, but as you approach your goal of completing the line it gets harder and harder and some of the most hard to find items are the ones you’ll end up chasing for a long time. But I have the time and I’m positive I’ll one day complete my collection of MB’s!! :-) Meanwhile, you can find photos of my current, up-to-date MB Transformers collection here.


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MB Transformers series – Part 4

Tonight is a small Anglo-Dutch party. My very good friend Maz from TF-1.com and I are proud to present to you some of our most interesting work to date. We hope you will find it is also some of our best work to date, because we’ve certainly poured our collective hearts and souls into it. Both articles that we’ve just finished writing go into amazing detail on a subject matter that we are pretty passionate about: European Joustra Diaclones and MB Transformers respectively.


First off, above you can see some of the graphical design for the latest installment in my series of articles on MB Transformers, which is now finally online! This fourth chapter examines the very close ties between the afforementioned two vintage toy lines from the mid-1980′s. This is the big one. Both in size and in message. Some numbers; the first two installments were around 2,500 words each. The third installment was the biggest one yet with approximately 5,000 words. The first draft of the fourth installment came close to the 9,500 mark! That was way too big. I also found the flow of the article was just too chaotic and I commenced on a 2-week long redesign, which ultimately saw this article end up with 7,500 words. Still quite large, but I now feel confident that it is ready for consumption and succeeds in getting my message across.

Content wise, this is why I embarked on this unholy mission of writing a series of articles on MB Transformers. The previous three chapters, while informative and enjoyable in their own right, were all leading up to the information that can be found in chapter four. It ties an important and relatively unknown portion of early European Transformers history together. This is the story I wanted to tell. This is what I think happened between MB and Joustra in 1985 and I think it’s very exciting. This is what I needed to get out of my system and share with fellow G1 Transformers enthousiasts on the world wide interwebs. I guess observant collectors will have put this together before, but to my knowledge this information has never been published online in such a comprehensive way and since it’s been more than 25 years, I thought it was high time it got told! I really hope you enjoy it!

Please don’t think that the rest of the series will be boring. Although I cannot deny that this is really the high point of the series, there is still much more to tell and you can count on my usual nerdy and meticulous methods of investigation and obsessive attention to detail for the remaining 6 chapters. I won’t give out an estimate for the release date of the 5th chapter, because I need an even bigger break than after the last chapter. It’ll be here when it’s here. For now, enjoy the “MB and Joustra Connection” by clicking here.


“Joustra Diaclone Lancia Stratos”

But like I said, that’s only one half of the party! As soon as you’re done reading the “MB & Joustra Connection” there is some further reading that I can heartily recommend from my favourite vintage Transformers site, TF-1.com.


Through an amazing bout of luck and coincidence my good friend Maz got his hands on a very, very rare Joustra Diaclone wave 2 item; Lancia Stratos, a.k.a. pre-Wheeljack! This is the first time a Joustra Diaclone Lancia Stratos has surfaced publicly complete inside his packaging! You can count on Maz to thoroughly examine this item and place it against the background of both its earlier and later incarnations, accompanied with many, many photographs in his trademark style. It’s the next best thing to owning one yourself! At this moment this is the only known Joustra Diaclone Lancia Stratos in the world of which publicly available, photographic evidence exists! Check out TF-1.com’s amazing scoop by clicking here.

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