Tuesday 14 March 2023



My collecting these days falls into two categories, upgrading / replacing or items that catch my eye. Parkour falls very much within the former. The role of Cliffjumper on my shelf over the years has been filled by two figures, first it was ACE Tumbler and then, and most currently, MMC Hellion. But with my Masterpiece collection slowly starting to become more cartoon orientated in aesthetic, Hellion was beginning to look out of place. And, with Fans Toys announcing the intended release of their adaptation of Cliffjumper, having already obtained their Huffer and Brawn, it was a forgone conclusion that a pre-order would be made. So, do Fans Toys have us dead centre in their view finder with this release? Lets take a look shall we.

Box & Accessories

It’s the standard box style and quality again from Fans Toys. Glossy, embossed with good artwork and the usual polystyrene tomb housing the figure and accessories, with the instruction booklet and bio-card in a bag. The accessories comprise of a small blaster, a bigger blaster on a bi-pod, 3 extra heads with expressive faces and a set of ski’s. You know, the obligatory accessory from ’that episode where..’ One point I’d briefly make here, is the small blaster. It’d be nice to have a different design, instead of repeating what’s gone before but just varying the size.

Vehicle Mode

Fans Toys I feel have made the decision to emulate the ‘Penny Racer’ style from the original toy, while also having hints of the animation model. We’ve seen this twice before in how they approached both Rig and Hunk. Vehicle mode is quite bland if I’m honest, this slavish approach to cartoon accuracy does have its downsides, especially in the Masterpiece line. That said, I initially wasn’t sure about the metallic red ‘headlights’ but now they have grown on me if only to break up the red monotony. It’s a solid alt mode with little to no panel gaps or mis-alignments, and is nicely painted despite the singular colour. Almost every inch of this figure is painted and the one I have to hand has zero blemishes or bad spots. Rubber tyres and translucent plastic enhance the overall aesthetic making this, despite my detailing reservations, a really good looking alt mode. Parkour rolls well on his wheels and the doors open for effect, but this is more to do with transformational sequence than actual play or design feature. Just going back to the wheels for a moment, on mine some one of the wheels is not as snug as the others and as such when rolling is more akin to a clown car than a Porsche. I’ll mention the ski’s here, and the keen eye will note no picture in the review of them in-situ. They’re an accessory I’ve little interest or time for, much like most of these ‘in that episode’ additions. However, they do fit well and look okay for those wanting to do that kind of thing. Oh and the guns also combine and clip onto the roof, again, fine if you like that but to me it looks shit.


I’ve seen and heard a lot online, mostly in a few video reviews, of much made of the transformation process and the potential for breakage. I don’t believe this to be true, as all the materials seem solid enough and I would say any potential could be attributed to how it’s been handled. That said, some parts of the process are tight, but no tighter than what we’ve experienced before in the 3rd Party market. One thing I did note on mine was paint peeling almost immediately on the small armatures that the side panels are attached to, the panels that clip into Parkour sides. You'll see what I mean when you view the vehicle mode pictures. The sequence is not complicated and once done a few times, it’s pretty straightforward, just bear in mind the clearance issues in one or two areas.

Robot Mode

In robot mode Parkour is a very much animation spot on, from the front anyway. It’s when you look at him from the side and back that the lines are broken. And really, that’s something you just have to put up with, seriously. In such a small figure there are going to be pay offs and compromises to be made. And here in Parkour I feel that hey have struck the right balance. Just to repeat a point from earlier, this figure is painted excellently. Not one blemish or bad spot, just about every inch is covered. Fans Toys have done a bang on job of getting all the key elements from his cartoon look to translate well on this figure. His diminutive presence is very pleasing to the eye and looks the part when grouped with his other Fans Toys brethren. Parkour's articulation is not bad, considering his size. As a rule, MP’s of this size don’t always tend to have the widest range of movement. Sure, there’s no double joints, separate fingers or ab-crunch but does that really matter? For most of us our figures tend to display in varied ‘static’ poses anyway. He holds his weapons well, via a peg to the back rather than the standard side. But the bigger blaster with the bi-pod renders the elbow joint useless, unless you twist and turn hand and shoulder, but this is limiting on the pose variance. So overall a great robot mode that looks and feels the part and also scales well with other Masterpiece figures.

Closing Thoughts

Fans Toys continue to release quality product, there is very little argument against that, and I’m no through and through Fans Toys fan (I still have strong thoughts on Hoodlum). Parkour is a solid representation of the G1 cartoon Cliffjumper and I see very little improvement over it even from Takara with their imminent release. That’s not to say it’s perfect, which it isn’t. More and more Fans Toys are getting bland with their aesthetic, chasing this cartoon style. And that’s fine if you like that kind of thing. But as much as I liked the cartoon I don’t really want figures that look that plain. To me a Masterpiece figure should have the correct balance of character points versus a little technical detail. Say, maybe the odd panel detailing or robotic circuitry etc. Something that makes it stand out as a believable sentience and not a smooth statue to something. But these points aside Parkour is a compact yet hefty figure with solid materials, great paint job and reasonable articulation. I’m still a huge fan of MMC Hellion and he will maintain his presence on my shelf, but being totally objective I have to say that Parkour is a better rendition of Cliffjumper than Hellion. Sounding like a stuck record, I’ll say again, please quit with the pointless accessories. I’d rather have fewer to no accessories (except a blaster) and a cheaper price point than additions that are never going to be used. I think a better way to go about it would be to retail accessory packs either for specific figures or factions that incorporate a wider range of characters. That way those who want less for less are covered as are those that want more for more.
At this point if you don’t have an MP representation of Cliffjumper and don’t want to shell out the stupid Takara prices then he’s definitely a good solid option.

That’s it from me, time to roll out
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