The third series of G1 in 1986 brought in the first waves of Transformers explicitly designed for the series. Many of the new robots featured gimmicks, such as a continuation of the Triple Changers including Broadside, who transforms into a red and gray generic jet fighter or a Nimitz-Class supercarrier.
Broadside is one of the first designs not sourced from Diaclone, Microchange or other toylines. Early shots of Broadside seen in various catalogs show a design nearly unrecognizable from his production scheme, with a narrower body, movable shoulders, a blue head and arms, and a smoother jet mode. This design is conspicuously featured in the original Sunbow cartoon series. Broadside was designed by Kaoru Matsumoto. His US Patent, titled Reconfigurable toy aircraft-carrier (aka Transformers G1 Broadside) was filed on December 17, 1985 (U.S. Patent No. USD295994 S).
Broadside’s more accurate alternate mode is a gray-decked aircraft carrier resembling the USS Nimitz (with the fictional number CVN-98 stickered on the deck, instead of CVN-68). Much of the deck is formed by painted die-cast plates with molded details such as stripes indicating runways and catapults, and implied elevator decks. The deck also features a fairly plain command island on the starboard side.
By turning Broadside over, his blocky jet mode becomes obvious: the bow and stern deck fold under to reveal rolling metal landing gear, and the wings and tailfins unfold, and the translucent blue cockpit canopy pops up. The two gray missile accessories can peg under his wingtips. This mode is very square, and decorated in cleary defined segments of red and gray, with large foil-backed stickers covering the surface of his die-cast wings.
From the aircraft carrier mode, the transformation to robot is similar. The bow and stern decks fold up (including the nosecone), the jet engines fold to form the feet, and the arms pull out from their half-hidden locations in his sides. His robot mode looks very much like his jet mode, being quite square, with only some large stickers to provide decoration. He can wield his battle axe and rifle in either hand.
Broadside’s brick-like body and huge die-cast metal portions make him incredibly resistant to breakage, except for his cockpit canopy bubble. Due to its position on the bottom of the carrier mode, and its poor retraction mechanism mean it is often scuffed, scratched, or gouged. Worse yet, the bubble is only attached by one thin pin at each end, and can easily be detached or broken off, revealing the gray molded decorative plate below.
Broadside was available world in 1986, with or without a glow-in-the-dark Transformers: the Movie promotional poster.
Broadside does not have any notable production variations.
Redecos & Retools
Broadside’s mold has never been re-used.