If you asked anyone who’s watched the original G1 Transformers cartoon who was one of the most memorable & unique character in the series, I’m pretty sure Soundwave’s name would come up quite a lot. Yup the Decepticon’s original communications officer has a lot going for him. He’s got that cool monotonous effects rich processed voice, he’s bigger than your typical Autobot and as seen in the first episode, can beat up multiple bots at the same time, and of course, he’s got his little private army residing in his chest.
Unfortunately, for all the plusses Soundwave had going for himself, he did have one major minus (hey we can’t all be perfect). While his fellow Transformers turned into jets, cars and weapons of destruction….he turned into a Walkman.
If you handed any kid today a Walkman, they would probably look at you with a puzzled look on their face and ask you what the hell that is…or at least ask where the touch screen is. Unfortunately the Walkman doesn’t exude the same “coolness” factor or even cultural relevance today as it did way back in 1984. And don’t even get me started on his posse, Laserbeak, Ravage, Rumble, Frenzy & co….who transformed into cassettes. Yup back then, a robot that transformed into a cassette player with minions that transformed to cassettes was a cool idea, today it’s all irrelevant.
|Micro Cassette Recorder|
|MP3 player with matching Rumble & Frenzy earphones!|
Anyway, unlike the seekers, I’m not THAT big of a Soundwave whore, so I don’t have ALL the versions in my collection. But in any case I’d like to talk about 2 of my favourite updated incarnations of the character.
Now this has got to be the most radical interpretation of the character. I admit initially I wasn’t so blown away by the design, but it was how his character was depicted in the Transformers Prime show that ultimately won me over. He is the embodiment of creepiness….sulking in the shadows, recording bits of conversations to use to his advantage in the future and kicking all sorts of ass with his healthy supply of tentacles when he has to. The drone plane alt mode is just perfect as well, to emphasize more the super-secret spy aspect of the character. As an added bonus, he comes with his own version of Laserbeak that although doesn’t really transforms into anything, fits seamlessly onto his chest…just perfect.
Ok, the animated aesthetic is really a love it or hate it type. As a whole, the style of the show was the furthest departure from anything we as fans had ever seen in a Transformers cartoon. I for one loved it. And a big reason why is because unlike most Transformers cartoons, Hasbro/Takara-Tomy did the amazing job of actually translating all these animated designs into fairly accurate toys.
|Hello! I'm Soundwave....wanna plaaaay?|
So there you have it…my personal take on Soundwave, evil Decepticon…but ultimate Transformer rockstar!
*Thanks to Seibertron.com for most of the pictures used in this post, most of my Soundwaves are in storage and I didn't have time to take them out.