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TheForgottenTaxi

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About TheForgottenTaxi

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    United States
  • About You...
    Watching "Megatron's Master Plan" was a defining moment in my life.
  • Favorite Movies
    I once blasphemously wrote that the 2007 movie was better than the 1986 movie. I still haven't forgiven myself
  • Most Prized Transformer
    Powermaster Optimus - first Optimus I got as a kid
  1. I would love to believe this, but I'm not buying it. They're not addressing any of the specific concerns, only giving a blanket, "Nothing to see here, folks." Oh, and Robo_Rob, there's a big difference between "only get a 20 minute break" and "forced to work in 104-degree heat, body searched three times a day, and not permitted to lift your head or talk." It's entirely possible the report was blowing things out of proportion of course. But until Hasbro comes forward with something more than a stock, boilerplate response, I just can't imagine there isn't something to this.
  2. Re: Hasbro's response: I sincerely hope this supposed investigation leads to improvements. Because seriously, I want those damn Transformers Prime figures. They look amazing. I'm skeptical of course, but I'd like to hold out hope. Of course, I have a nasty suspicion that even if they *did* fix it they wouldn't say anything just to keep the story out of the news. Yeah, in my mind if they keep pumping out Generations, I'll be happy no matter what other crap they're putting out. Or at least I would be in the world I lived in a week ago in which I had no ethical qualms with buying Hasbro toys. Sigh. Make it right Hasbro. Please.
  3. As I said earlier, it's not that we should want to shut the factory down, it's that we should want to improve conditions there. A full-on boycott would be effective in communicating concerns to the company, because companies care primarily about their bottom line. Voicing your concern while continuing to support the behavior with your dollars is not going to change anything. If Hasbro gets a letter from you and a $50 order on HasbroToyShop.com, guess which one is going to count for more? I've seen a few people now say that the only way to fix this is to change trade laws to make producing in these countries less economically efficient. That might or might not be a good idea, but we the customers can also create economic inefficiencies. If it is in a company's best interest to improve conditions, it will do so. If enough people cared enough to refrain from buying their toys, that would happen. As for laws to improve working conditions, again, this factory isn't following the laws already on the books in China. Um, the original story isn't journalism. It's a press release from the Institute for Global Labour and Human Rights. To quote from their website: "The Institute for Global Labour and Human Rights (the Institute) is a non-profit 501©(3) human rights organization dedicated to the promotion and defense of internationally recognized worker rights in the global economy." To quote from a writeup on Bleeding Cool: "Previously known as the NLC, the Institute was one of the first bodies to raise the issue of sweatshop labor in the mid nineties, by targeting Kathie Lee Gifford for her Nicaraguan-produced line, and have continued with many other clothing and sneaker manufacturers." So, yeah. That's their "actual reason" for writing it. Is it biased? Probably, but it's not hiding that bias. I would guess that the sensational tone and cheesy headline were an attempt to grab the attention of whichever editors get this. Which, incidentally, they have not done. In a quick Google search the only pickup I saw was on Transformer sites, Bleeding Cool and the Providence Business Journal. You know what that means? It means almost no one even knows about this except hardcore Transformers fans, and if we don't let Hasbro know we're unhappy with it, no one will.
  4. That a lot of other companies have factories in China does not absolve these factories of the conditions within them, nor us of supporting that business. First, while it is possible, even likely, that other companies' factories have lousy working conditions, it's a little too easy to lump them all together. As an earlier poster pointed out, this factory doesn't even measure up to Chinese labor laws or Hasbro's stated policies. Finally, not all goods are created equal. If you're buying clothes for your kids and all you can afford are clothes made in China, that's a different thing than really needing that new Starscream for your display shelf full of Starscreams. It's one thing to say, "Hey, that's the way of the world, I can't change it," and another thing to say, "Hey, that's the way of the world, I'm going to spend my disposable income supporting it." I for one don't think I can throw up my hands and say that, since lots of companies make stuff in China, I'm going to keep buying exactly what I want regardless of the effect on other people even when specific abuses are brought to my attention.
  5. I'm kind of shocked by the amount of complacency on this thread. Yeah, it's China, and we probably could have assumed factory conditions weren't awesome. Yes, other companies probably have factories that are just as bad. But now that these specific allegations are in front of our faces, don't we have some responsibility as adult humans from one of the earth's wealthiest countries to weigh the needs of these kids against our desire for cheap toys? I mean seriously, I love this hobby. I want those Transformer Prime figures something fierce. But I just don't see how I can give Hasbro another penny until they address this. Giving up some toys is a pretty minor gesture in the face of these kinds of abuses. And yes, I know that many of these workers are happy to have the job, no matter how horrible it is. Honestly, I want them to keep having that job. I just want them to have safe, sane, healthy working conditions. If it means Deluxes suddenly cost $15-20, so be it.
  6. From the Wall Street Journal: "Hasbro Inc.'s second-quarter earnings rose 33% as revenue in the Boys category almost doubled thanks to the success of the Transformers brand, offsetting declines in its other three product categories." http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702303795304576453594217814986.html?mod=rss_whats_news_us Hasbro's CEO says the gains were "led by strong gains in the Transformers brand, driven by Transformers: Dark of the Moon." My personal take: I think the DOTM spin by Hasbro is a touch hard to swallow. Really, the movie that came out two weeks ago boosted your entire second quarter?
  7. TheForgottenTaxi

    How long do you want TF: Prime to last?

    As Robo Rob said, my assumption was that the quality of the show would be so obvious that most people would like it. Look, the movies have problems (especially the second one), but their influence here is really pretty surface. The designs are reminiscent of the movie, Bumblebee is obviously designed to be the same character, and there is some cooperation with a human government. And that's pretty much it. Is your hatred of the movies really that intense that that's enough to put you off the show? By the way, does anyone remember when Animated designs first showed up and the howl went up that they looked too cartoony, too distorted, too clearly aimed at kids? Or when Beast Wars came on and everyone complained that they didn't turn into cars? I am reasonably certain fans won't approve of a set of designs right off the bat unless they're a direct G1 port. Admittedly, the kids seem out of place. But once you resign yourself to the fact that kids have clearly been mandated, they're at least executed reasonably well. I will agree that the show at this early stage hasn't come close to achieving what Beast Wars and Animated wound up achieving. But those shows came out of the gate with problems too, and took time to grow into their awesomeness. Prime is already pretty dang awesome, and I'm really excited to see what it'll grow into.
  8. TheForgottenTaxi

    How long do you want TF: Prime to last?

    I agree with everything you said, but I think you're glossing over how little character development or continuing story arc Beast Wars had in season one. That first season was almost all done-in-ones. Prime has already done one five-part story, and it's pretty early, so I'd give it some time; I'm betting we see some character development eventually. (Heck, the G1 Grimlock example took many years to play out, and was across two writers. Though he did evolve within Furman's run, I think the difference between Tyrant Grimlock and Pretender/Actionmaster/G2 Grimlock is largely one of different writers just having a different take on the guy.) Also, I'm okay if they don't transform for the sake of transforming, especially because some episodes (like Convoy) have given them great reasons to transform. Besides, by the end of the G1 comics and in the G2 comics, there was hardly any transforming. And no one cares because the stories were good.
  9. TheForgottenTaxi

    How long do you want TF: Prime to last?

    I'm shocked by all the hate in this thread! I really assumed consensus on Prime would be "Best series since Beast Wars." Seriously, this show seems designed to appeal to adult fans; it's easily the most mature series they've ever attempted. The voice acting is great, the scripting is solid. There's even some cool nods to Transformers lore (Scraplets!). I'm not sure what more you guys want. With Animated, I felt weirdly embarrassed to be watching most of the time. Not Prime. I'm seriously stunned by how good it is. Even my girlfriend is actively interested in it. Yeah, it has its problems. The stakes haven't been clearly defined, the world seems thin, and the overall story has lost momentum since the mini. But these are solvable things. Beast Wars suffered from many of the same problems in season one. So to answer your question: I want it to go on for a good long time. Let's break the record with four seasons!
  10. TheForgottenTaxi

    Your newest figures and your verdict

    Just got Generations Wave 3 (Wheeljack, Thundercracker, Scourge and Kup). Let's tackle 'em in that order: Wheeljack: When you open him, you will be in awe of his vehicle mode. Enjoy it, because you will never get him folded up as tightly again. Like Tracks, Wheeljack's back end is frustratingly hard to fold down properly, even once you know the trick to it. Of course, the big difference between Wheeljack and Tracks is the legs, which have been remolded to make clear that the hood of the car is to face forward. The hood is a bit too wide for this to work however, and makes Wheeljack look sort of short and squat. Despite all that, the colors are really nice and the tribute unmistakable. I still recommend it, at least assuming you like the character. Thundercracker: By now, you know what you're getting with the venerable Classics Seeker mold. As with Thrust and Dirge, Hasbro has given us a truly awesome paint job on this one. My only criticism is that the same shade of blue is used on the missiles as the majority of his body, so they look a little redundant sticking out from under his wings in his otherwise excellent jet mode. I would have rather silver missiles or something like that. Scourge: Wow. This guy is truly impressive. When this was first announced, I was annoyed that his alt mode was less G1 accurate than Titanium Scourge. But now that I've got him in hand I can say that this guy is light years ahead of that limited toy. Yeah, the alt mode isn't as accurate, but it fits the character, and is just flat out cool. Plus, for the first time, Scourge has a real transformation, and it's a fun one. Highly recommended. Kup: The cream of the crop. Sure, the door kibble on his arms is annoying. But two truly sweet modes and a nice paint job more than make up for it. The transformation from truck to robot mode is downright cool, with a quasi-automorph quality to it. Transforming back to truck mode is a little less smooth, but it's not a significant flaw. Bottom line: this is an awesome figure, and if you have any interest in the concept you won't be sorry you purchased it.
  11. TheForgottenTaxi

    Most overated tfs

    Character-wise: Soundwave. People, he has never done anything cool. Ever. Yeah, sweet toy, sweet design, and it's nifty that other dudes come out of his chest. But he gets way too much love for a personality-free boob. Toy-wise: The Seacons. Yeah, Piranacon looks kinda cool and all, but almost all the toys that comprise him are at once stupid and hideous, which sort of defeats the purpose of a gestalt. Add in the profusion of pink, and his non-inclusion in any anglophone fiction whatsoever, and I have no idea why people were clamoring for this set. And while we're on gestalts: G1 Devastator. Looks cool and all... until you breathe on him.
  12. We've often seen toys of characters that don't appear in the movie, so I wouldn't take the existence of the plastic Mudflap as a surefire sign of anything. There was that shot from the set that seemed to show the Twins as well. But it's possible that will be edited out, or that the cars themselves had to be in the movie for product placement purposes. I wouldn't be shocked if the twins do wind up showing up, but it's possible they're telling the truth.
  13. TheForgottenTaxi

    Will we see a "Generations" Galvatron?

    It also looks like Hasbro's decided that from now on all their Generations/Classics/Etc. toys will be Deluxes, with the odd scout or legend tossed in, for whatever reason. (Maybe their last round of Universe 2.0 Voyagers didn't sell that well? To which I would say, if they'd made Galvatron a Voyager and Powerglide a Deluxe or Legends... well I'm guessing those toys would have sold a lot better! This really shouldn't still bother me. But it does.) But as another poster said, I suspect (hope? pray?) that Galvatron will be the next Masterpiece release.
  14. If it transformed, it would have to be a new mold (since Masterpiece Starscream's cockpit isn't big enough), which would mean it would have to be a mass-market release. Not that that wouldn't be awesome. For what it is though, this is still pretty sweet. Honestly, I think this is a much cooler crossover product than, say, the goofy Marvel or Star Wars figures.
  15. TheForgottenTaxi

    TF Prime Op, Megatron, and kids gift set

    I'm not a fan of the way Megatron's head sticks up in his alt mode. But his robot mode is absolutely brimming with win, so I'll likely grab him anyway. Optimus on the other hand looks pretty lackluster. It makes me think there's a bigger version of him to come. On the whole, though, this line looks awesome. Almost as awesome as the show!
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