Tuesday, 21 August 2012

#10 Race Car Patrol (1989)

It's no secret. I admit it freely. My name is Glenn, and I'm a Micromasteraholic.

It started all the way back in 1989. I'd seen all the adverts, and read all the comics about them. Then I saw them in the shops. The big Co-op department store in Ousegate, and then Fenwick's of York, in Coppergate. I saw the shiny package they came in, saw how dinky the toys were, and then read the Tech Specs, where I learned all about these tiny teams and how they didn't give a monkey's toss what the bigger robots thought about them. The fact that the comics related that they had all the strength and power of 'normal' sized Transformers made me fall in love with them even more.

I think it's because they were rebellious and bolshie is why I liked the characters so much. They toys were great too, Hasbro's transforming answer to Galoob's Micro Machines ( I think Hasbro may have won that round, you know).

The Race Car Patrol featured heavily in the comics, they were the poster child for the Micromasters, basically. In a story that even now I have to think about whether it was actually real or not, Roadhandler (the leader; the others being Swindler, Free Wheeler and Tailspin) actually became a wrestling champion. No, really. He fought for the title, and as it was predetermined, he won the belt. Ah, the eighties. Of course, once the Decepticons showed up, the fight became oh so real, and involved fans, the Air Strike Patrol, and Lord Zarak as a Vince McMahon style manager (remember the Corporation? I miss those days).

Sadly, the Micromasters only ever appeared in the Japanese cartoons, where their Marvel bios were never used, and ALL Micromasters were portrayed as annoying children.

As I said earlier, the toys were an answer to Micro Machines, and I think they fared a lot better. After all, they transform. But the detail on these toys is amazing, and they're bright and colourful. The fact that most of the transformations are ones you can do in your sleep is immaterial; they're fun toys, and that's more than good enough for me.

Seriously, these guys are addictive.I have loads, and still need to collect more and more sets.

The Tech Specs definitely informed the fiction in this case; in the comics they're brash, to the point, and cocky as all get out. The thing is though, these guys always back it up, and that's why I love them. As a guy on the short side myself, it's always nice to see that sometimes explosive things come in small packages.

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