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Transformers: Cybertron
by yo go re

One of the first Transformers I remember getting was Mixmaster - thus, I've got a soft spot for cement mixer TFs. Fortunately, there arn't a whole lot of them - even better, the latest is pretty darn cool.

Quickmix Quick-thinking, intuitive and totally loyal to the Giant Planet and its inhabitants, Quickmix serves as right hand mech to Metroplex. It is he who first confronts Menasor over the evil robot's betrayal of the Giant Planet's traditions, and who encourages Metroplex to avoid becoming involved in the affairs of the Autobots. He rarely fights, preferring his role as a builder and repairman, but when the safety of his home world is threatened, he never backs down.

It's funny that a Transformer from another planet would have one of the most unobtrusive alt modes in the line. While Optimus Prime was disguising himself as a fire truck with guns, Quickmix is a pretty plain cement mixer. He doesn't even live on Earth, yet he'd fit right in. How does that work? Of course, he also had a Scottish accent - a nod to the greatest sci-fi engineer of all time.

The truck is about 8½" long and 4¾" tall and features six individually rolling wheels. The mixer's drum can spin (though it's on a ratcheted joint, not free-wheeling) and the delivery chute can be moved up and down, with some effort. The truck's cab keep on truckin' is encased by clear windows on the front and sides, and a pair of grey smokestacks rise on either side of the back. There's even a gray winch sticking out of the front bumper, in case the truck gets stuck somewhere and is too heavy to move. And lest the truck run into something while backing up (you know, in case the incesant beeping wasn't enough of a warning), there's a big industrial double fender back there. The truck is mainly orange and yellow, while the drum is cream and grey.

Transformation is pleasantly complex. I always love it when you look at something and can't immediately tell what goes where. Ratchet the drum up, fold the back wheels down to the underside, rotate the arms-to-be into place, fold down the chest flap and rotate the head to face front. Split the legs and a gear system will raise the head and chest up to shoulder level. Rotate the feet down and around, and turn the halves of the cab into their new positions. That's it, you're done!

he looks like a knight Quickmix is a nice-looking robot, mostly. The fact that the mixing drum turns into his right arm without any sort of change is kind of lame. It also makes him sort of list to the side. His eye slit is light-piped, and he has an antenna on his left "ear." The truck's rear bumper can be removed and used as a blaster. In robot mode, Quickmix is 7½" tall now that's an arm! and moves at the ankles, knees, hips, elbows, biceps, shoulders and neck.

Since he's a part of the Cybertron line, Quickmix has a key-activated feature. Plug the included Giant Planet Key, which features a translucent purple body with a silver, gear-laden edge, into the figure and his drum arm splits open to become a much more impressive blaster, complete with launching missile. Still no evidence of anything resembling a hand, though, so you know Quickmix must be a lefty. Though he'd have a hell of a right cross.

Hailing from Giantion, as he does, Quickmix gets a Minicon partner. See, since the Giant Planet TFs were all so... giant, they needed smaller robots to help thm with fine detail work. See, Gigantion was originally a small, biological, Earth-like planet, but the robots Gigantion, before and after there just kept working on new construction projects. Once they'd finished a layer, they'd simply begin building on top of it, until the planet more than quadrupled in size - nearly coming into contact with the debris rings that circled it - and the original world was lost deep at the core of their new steel planet. The robots there all grew to huge size, as well, which is why they needed the Mini-Cons.

What is that thing? Quickmix's partner is Stripmine, a drill/tank thing. I'm sure it would look right at home on Cybertron. It's about 4" long, and can't be connected to any Mini-Con ports in vehicle mode, because his treads cover his port. Ach! Transformation is simple, of course. The treads become legs and the guns become arms.

Oh, it's Stripmine! In robot mode, Stripmine can stand on the "control tower" of Quickmix's drum/arm, presumably to direct the flow of concrete or the aiming of the missile. Basically, the chute becomes a command center podium for the tiny blue guy. He's kind of a weird-lookin' little thing, but there's a reason for that.

Boomer See, the name "Quickmix" is a throwback to the G1 Autobot cement mixer. That Quickmix was a Targetmaster, which meant he had a small partner (or in his case, two) which changed from a small robot to a gun. Sound familiar? It should, since it's the forerunner of Armada's Mini-Cons. In any case, one of G1 Quickmix's assistants was Boomer, a small blue robot with an oversized gun for his right arm - yes, just like Stripmine. Neat!

Even with his giant kibble arm, Quickmix is a good Transformer buy. Great vehicle, cool-looking robot, fun transformation, a retro-styled Mini-Con partner and a decent action feature? That's a winner right there. In fact, the only drawback is that Quickmix wasn't popular enough and enough of a big seller to warrant a redeco - in green and purple, like all TF construction vehicles should be.


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