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Episodes 1-3: "Transform and Roll Out" - Download Audio Version
Opening credits: reminiscent of the G1 season 2 credits, with the grid, very cool.
Continutity: Whoa, this is in G1 continuity? I had thought it was separate. Okay, it became clear after they landed on Earth, 20 minutes into the future, that this is actually NOT G1 continutity, despite having G1 footage. Weird. Earth obviously has not been visited by Cybertronians before, so this is a parallel universe to G1, where they never reached Earth, yet the Autobots prevailed anyway.
The look of the characters: seeing the toys in stores, I wasn't really excited by their look, although I certainly didn't loathe them like I do the Bayformers. They just didn't really do much for me. Actually what happened was I couldn't afford to be buying toys so I convinced myself that I didn't like the new esthetic.
Well, now I like it and now I'll have to buy some animated toys. Happy, Hasbro? I've come crawling back.
So, Optimus Prime, clearly not G1 Optimus. Hard to get used to his face, but it's all right. No acknowledgement so far that he shares the name of a former Autobot leader. I guess I'll find out more about this continuity as we go on.
Prowl, one seriously bad ninja bot. Armed with the glaive from Krull, no less.
Patrick, I mean Bulkhead, I kinda like the shooting hands at the enemy thing.
Bumblebee, I was worried I'd find him annoying, since he's clearly the character to appeal most to kids. But he's pretty cool. He's small, he's not tough, but he's brave, even if he makes jokes about being scared sometimes.
First shot of the Decepticon ship, I said Oh Sweet Primus. I had read something that indicated the Decepticons were vastly superior to the Autbots in this series, as far as fighting ability, and boy is that true.
Megatron is scary. The other Decepticons we don't get a chance to meet much, they are shoehorned in because it's the start of the series, even though they are never seen again in the first three episodes, with the exception of Starscream.
Starscream, I like a lot. An improvement over G1 Screamer, because he doesn't whine about taking over, he just does it. That was nice to see.
Seeing the docking tube was a nice touch. Megatron go bye-bye. But seeing how much trouble they have, all the Autobots vs. a single Decepticon, makes me wonder how they'll handle future conflicts. Luck and teamwork can only stand against overwhelming brute force for so long.
I'm not sure why the Autobots all went into stasis, if it was to protect themselves during the crash, it doesn't make sense, because Optimus doesn't even enter stasis until after the crash. And there's no wakeup alarm.
So, taking a cue from the Baymovie, Megatron crashes on Earth and is reverse-engineered to create lots of great new technologies.
So, I assume this is the 2nd episode, we switch to an Earth viewpoint, meet the Doc and his kid, who isn't annoying, thankfully, and her robot dog Sparkplug, heh heh.
His lab creates a horrible nanobotabsorbitronbeast. I bet he won't get arrested for endangering the public after it's all over. Hey, what do you know, he doesn't.
Another nice touch, the Autubots assume the vehicles are the dominant lifeforms on the planet.
I enjoyed Kup, I mean Ratchet mouthing off to Prime during the battle. You go, old-timer.
"Will I be able to breath down there?" "Sure! What's breathe?" Eep!
Getting Sari to be friends with the Autobots was really well done. So many times getting the humans and robots together is so forced, so artificial and fourth-wall breaking.
Onto part three. Prowl getting pooped on by pigeons, classic. Poop jokes are always funny.
Starscream is super-cool, taking out jets and taking on all the Autubots without concern. His only mistake is giving them time to come up with a plan. Just keep squishing humans! He doesn't care, and they do. He would win because of that, but we can't have that, so he gives them a bogus time limit and makes the rest of the show possible.
I kept waiting for it to be revealed that the Allspark they were so busy playing keep-away with was a dummy, but I was wrong. They really let the real allspark almost fall into Starscream's hands. Wow.
So Optimus Prime died. Well, we all know how long Prime's stay dead, and here we set a new record of about 72 seconds.
I was glad to see them clean up all the collateral damage caused in the fight. You don't see that in most fiction.
And the movie ends with a big DUN DUN DUN shot of Megatron's head. Creeeeepy.
And now for the credits...
I had heard David Kaye was Optimus, yes... but I didn't realize Corey Burton was Ratchet! And Megatron! Spike Witwicky is back! Fantastic.
Cree Summer as Blackarachnia, better known as Rayna from The Buzz on Maggie. I think she's done some other voice work as well.
And there we are.
Episodes 4: "Home is Where the Spark is " - Download Audio Version
I just watched episode 4 of season 1, Home is where the spark is.
I gave a rave review to the first three episodes which form the intro movie. I was optimistic the series would continue to impress me, and it does.
We open with a Green Arrow ripoff robbing an armoured car. Optimus captures him, then lets him escape just so we can see his fancy axe work and firing bolos out of his wrist power. Unfortunately that results in the villain having time to blow up someone's car, so maybe next time once Prime has hold of a bad guy, he should just keep hold of him.
Prowl has taken to the organic life on Earth and likes to meditate. This actually makes sense. To a rational Cybertronian, organic life should be a thing of wonder precisely because they do not understand it. The Decepticons, however (and I'm referring to G1 here because we hardly have any Decepticon characterization yet in this show), have massive egos and cannot accept things that are beyond their comprehension; instead of learning about ogranic life and increasing their fund of knowledge, they choose to assume it is inferior and of no account.
Thus, in an attempt to hide their weaknesses, even from themselves, they only serve to make it all the more apparent. How ironic.
Back to the show at hand, Prowl is harassed by paparazzi, and flees back to the Autobots secret lair, which they were given by Sari in the previous episode.
Bumblebee. I said last time how pleased I was that they didn't make him annoying. Well, I now have to eat those words. He was incredibly tiresome in this episode, just a real punk, especially to Prowl, and with no provocation. I hope this theme doesn't continue.
Next we've got Sari and her magic key, which, as you recall was used last episode to resurrect Optimus Prime from the dead, in a genuine Deus Ex MaKEYna.
Here she uses it to enter her dad's forbidden workshop, but a side effect is it resurrects Megatron's head.
Can I just say that Megatron sounds AWESOME? The voice work is first rate, he sound really scary, and he's just a head on a shelf! Imagine if he had his body back!
He knows that Starscream betrayed him, somehow, I guess he's hooked into a news feed. This makes him really dangerous. He uses his limited manipulative tools to make a spybot which hitchhikes with Sari off to the Autobot's secret lair.
So Sari is having, get this, a slumber party with the Autobots. Bumblebee is a jerk to Prowl some more, and then we're treated to the best comedy gag of the episode, Bulkhead trying to fit into Sari's sleeping bag. Amazingly it doesn't get damaged, but that's obviously because in the Animated universe the humans have pretty awesome technology stolen from Megatron.
Megatron uses his spybot to activate machinery in their lair to try and kill the Autobots. Personally I would have tried to do a bit more recon, but he's an impulsive guy.
The thing I like about this show so far is that the Autobots are kinda losers when it comes to fighting. They aren't warriors. They barely stood up to one Decepticon in the previous three episodes, so they are going to need to improve before they get some harder hitting villains. That's good because it means there is room for growth.
Here they make a rather pitiful showing against Earth technology, although to be fair it's probably based of Cybertronian tech. Only Prowl has the brains to figure out that the machinery is used motion sensors. Unfortunately for him, he doesn't know about Megatron, so it's up to Bumblebee to save the day. Best line goes to Bulkhead, when Prowl says he must use stillness, "From Bumblebee? We're dead!"
Still, he manages, and the rather unimpressive menace is over. Megatron's spybot gets captured, but Bulkhead accidentally scraps it. Oops.
Megatron vows revenge, and plans on manipulating Sari's dad to get a body. DUN DUN DUN!
This was a good episode, as far as character development goes, and since I'm old, I like that. The action wasn't the most exciting there's been, but I don't really mind. It's probably not an episode to single out to go back and rewatch, but as part of the series it fits in just fine. My favourite parts so far are all the scenes with Megatron, he's just so ominous! I hope he maintains his coolness.