Saturday, August 4, 2007

Miles Of Mayhem

[Miles Mayhem: the baddest dude on the block]
Written by GL

What do you think would happen if Colonel Sanders (of KFC fame) decided to dress himself up in navy-military blue, take to the air in a specialized attack aircraft and attempt several times to take over the world with a gang of thugs? The answer is simple: he'd be Miles Mayhem.

If you don't already remember, Miles Mayhem is the leader of the anti-task force known as V.E.N.O.M., the arch rival team of M.A.S.K. However, the only thing you should put down about V.E.N.O.M. is the fact that their acronym was terribly thought of: Vicious Evil Network of Mayhem. Not really the most terrifying-sounding organization. But they had the weapons, the masks and the evil intentions. And most importantly, they also had the vehicles.

In the case of Miles Mayhem, undisputed leader of V.E.N.O.M., he had the Switchblade.

[Original Packaging: the very awesome Switchblade]

The Switchblade is perhaps the coolest sounds and coolest transforming (mechanics-wise) of practically all the M.A.S.K. toys. And I say this loosely, because there were tons of awesome vehicles.

The Switchblade is, in fact, a helicopter in essence. It's a helicopter that can transform into a plane. It was also the predominant vehicle of Miles Mayhem, and appears in the cartoon many, many times (including in the intro theme). It's a total classic vehicle purely based on the fact that it's an original. Of course, the Switchblade came with it's own helmet, also the helmet that Miles Mayhem is most seen with, called Viper - it fires shots of poisonous acid.

[The Original Toy: a great, great, great, toy]

Switchblade came out in the USA in 1985. Then in Europe in 1987. It was one of the first V.E.N.O.M. vehicles in the first toy-line wave from Kenner toys. Coincidentally, There were 3 different versions of Switchblade made - One with the bomb accessory, which was sold to Europe and the USA. And one without the bomb accessory, sold mostly in Germany.

The Switchblade itself transformed at the press of several different buttons laid out around the toy. For instance, in helicopter mode, you could make the rotor blades rotate by pressing a button. In plane mode, the wings were easily folded back to imitate the look of a helicopter. Amazing, the design and thought that went into it.

I had this, I am very proud to say (and rub it in)!

[Instructions: to help you all reminisce about the good old days of playing]