Welcome to the first of Tonk’s Hall of Fame articles. These HoF stories will be very subjective and quite personal, so apologies in advance. Anyway, let’s kick off with some THRUST!
As the second Transformer I ever owned (bought in the summer of ’84/’85) Thrust continues to be one of my favourite G1 characters. Released as part of the second wave of Decepticon Seeker jets, Thrust, along with his wave-mates, Dirge and Ramjet, represented a departure from the F-16 jet mode of their wave 1 predecessors: Starscream, Skywarp and Thundercracker.
His VTOL wing-mounted engines really grabbed the attention of my 11 year old self. And that maroon and black colouring looked shit-your-trousers menacing AND cool.
Like all G1 Transformers, design priority was focussed on the vehicle mode resulting in a somewhat compromised robot mode. In essence, Thrust in ‘bot mode is a winged brick with arms that move up and down. But that’s part of the charm of G1 and lack of articulation never posed a problem to the wide-eyed imagination of the 80s kid.
The Thrust in these pics is my own and he’s all original. No re-issues or knock-offs here! The only mod I’ve done to him is the replacing of the Decepticon logo stickers on the wings with smaller Reprolabel versions. The stickers that came with Thrust were too big and curved over the front of the wings which looked messy.
As a side note, you will often see online images of Thrust mis-transformed in ‘bot mode. Some collectors choose to angle his nose-cone upwards resulting in a massive conehead. This is an attempt to emulate the look of the character in the ’80s cartoon. But it’s WRONG. The original box art, photography and instructions all show the nose-cone folded down behind the head as per the Wave 1 Seekers. This is a personal gripe of mine because with that nose-cone pointed up it looks RIDICULOUS… And Thrust deserves better than that.
Late 2016 will see the release of the Takara-Tomy Masterpiece Thrust and I’ll be damned if that son of a bitch doesn’t find a spot in my stash.
THRUST was, is and will continue to be a bad-ass and perpetual presence on the collection shelf. As Thrust himself said: “My engines’ roar is my enemies’ song of doom!”. I think we can all learn something from that.