Much like pre-MTMTE Swerve, Dead End has been cursed with being the name Hasbro uses on random carformers for the past several years, most recently being his admittedly awesome Prime toy. (And a Construct-Bot homage to it, I guess) But now with Combiner Wars, we have a new G1 style Dead End at last! Is it good enough to make the poor nihilist happy for once?
In alt mode, Dead End is a sports car that appears to be based on... a Ferrari 458 Italia. Why couldn't we get a Deluxe Dino again? My whinging aside, it's an absolutely gorgeous alt mode. It's super sleek and badass in design, and the colors are spot on, from the metallic red plastic, to the gold stripe that runs down the entire length of the car, and the occasional uses of silver and gunmetal. The one strip of unpainted gray on the sides was bothersome, and he also can't roll well at all, which is a shame. The weapon storage is also a letdown. The exhaust pipe can mount on the side, which would look fine on some alt modes, but not on a fancy sports car like this. The hand/foot also doesn't have any special way of storing like on the other Stunticons, but that doesn't really bug me, since I think the storage on all of them looks dumb anyway. Those minor faults aside, this is a beautiful alt mode, possibly my favorite car since AOE Drift.
Transformation is very fun, and a welcome break from the repetitive Aerialbot scheme. The upper body isn't incredibly special, but I really appreciate that he gets a detailed chest plate rather than it just being the combiner peg on display. And there's something really cool about how the legs work. I find it a bit tricky to unfold the windshield piece, and the ratcheted wrists are really weird, but he's still a total joy to transform.
Robot mode keeps up the theme from the alt mode of just looking damn good. His proportions are perfect, the detail is fantastic and the deco continues to be great. The headsculpt is awesome, I love the jagged visor and the somewhat unique look of the faceplate. He's not flawless, his elbows have that weird broken up look, ala Classics Rodimus, and he pretty much has no feet, but those are forgivable issues in my book. In terms of poseability, he technically has no more articulation than your standard CW Deluxe, but I feel his joints are more well done, particularly his elbows and knees, since they can move past 90 degrees. The hip joints were pretty loose on mine, but after I tightened them, he's pretty much perfect.
As for accessories, like all CW Deluxes, he has a personal weapon and the hand/foot gun. The hand/foot gun, for whatever reason, is incredibly loose in his hand, to the point that it just flops around. Eh, just another excuse for me to not use those things as handheld guns. What he CAN actually hold is his pipe weapon, which is simultaneously hilarious and awesome. He just carries around a friggin' exhaust pipe and beats people to death with it. That is amazing, and the perfect weapon for a street thug like a Stunticon.
So yeah, I have to be boring and agree with the majority that Dead End is awesome. Definitely my favorite Combiner Wars Deluxe thus far. I'm glad he's the Stunticon mold that's getting a ton of retools, even if most of them don't interest me.