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:bulletblue:If you want to read my reviews for previous Transformers shows, click here for the first archives or here for the second archives.


PREVIOUS SEASON THREE REVIEWS

53. Land Before Prime
54. Big Game

55. Too Many Kades
56. Phantom of the Sea
57. Unfinished Business
58. No Place Like Dome
59. Bugs in the System
60. Switcheroo
61. Bot-Tastic Voyage
62. Quarry's Quarry
63. Did You See What I Thaw
64. The Attack of Humungado
65. All Bots Great and Small
66. Time After Time
67. Pirates Ahoy
68. Turning the Tide
69. The Last of Morocco
70. The New Recruits
71. Rescue Bots Academy
72. A New Hero
73. Four-Legged Hero


:bulletred: As always, SPOILERS!




RESCUE BOTS EPISODE 74: ENDANGERED SPECIES
(Starring woodpeckers without the annoying laugh)




”I find the variety and beauty of earth birds inspiring; Cybertron had nothing like this.”

Chock up the opener of this episode as one of the cutest, d’aww worthy moments of Rescue Bots. I wonder if he spent his time doing the same in Cybertron (however little variety they had, according to Boulder anyway) that the thought of his home planet in the pits means he pays an even greater attention to Earth’s creatures. It’s highly appropriate when he discovers a family of woodpeckers that were presumed extinct. A dying species is something Boulder probably would understand, even if Heatwave doesn’t (though RID2015 reveals Cybertronians aren’t endangered, just spread out during the war.)

The lesson is another good one that might raise an eyebrow though. Sometimes it’s always best to leave stuff well enough alone, at least until you got a stable handle on things. “Endangered Species” has the right idea about letting experts and professionals deal with rare animals and having a gaggle of people isn’t going to help. Boulder attempts to do the same, but he oversteps his boundaries. The real lesson seems to be to learn to keep a damn secret which is kind of a vague lesson that really works on a broader spectrum. A situation like this? Makes sense. A situation elsewhere might not. I guess it’s one of the more complicated and subtle message that you really only understand when you get older; I’m not sure preschoolers will get it, but admiration around for the creators to tackle something a little more cerebral.

The ending is typical of Rescue Bots, though I don’t say it like it’s a bad thing. The series has always been about balance and the solution the Bots and Burns figure out works well enough. But wow, Griffin Rock really loves birds because lying about those woodpeckers is equivalent to a lynch mob.

Otherwise, it’s another standard, generally decent episode of Rescue Bots. I suppose this is as good as any to say I do enjoy episodes of robots getting along with nature. Media has this kind of division and expectations that a cold, metal creature born of science and technology is antithetical to Mother Nature’s creations. Rescue Bots (and really, a number of Transformers show) strives to subvert and counter that train of thought. I love it when robots are so into animals and plants because it’s not what you’d expect of them. The Iron Giant, the robots from Castle in the Sky—they actively embrace it with such gentleness and care that not even humans would (for numerous reasons: being aliens from another world; being recently built and exploring Earth in ways humans cannot or lost their ways; etc.)
:star::star::star: AND A HALF OUT OF FIVE STARS



BONUS OBSERVATIONS



SPRING-HEELED:



How did Cody and Frankie climb up that tree? The nearest branch is way higher than they are.  
I’m also amused the parent woodpeckers actually shielded their kids when Cody and Frankie nearly fell down on them, like they have actual sentience to do that. Cartoon, I know, but I personally theorize the birds just drank toxic Griffin Rock water that gave them free will because I’m a sick person.

BIRD GUARDING IS SERIOUS BUSINESS: I love Frankie’s martial arts pose; she is going to protect the hell out of those birds.



SUGAR AND SWEET: Little girl voiced Boulder is also super adorable. Then it gets super hilarious when he delves into that deep creepy voice, especially when he says he ”loves birds.” Dear GOD.

BEST LINE:

BOULDER: I think it’s a red-headed cuckoo.
KADE: Why are you looking at me when you’re saying that?

I don’ t know, Kade, just something about you…

____________________________________________________________________________________________

:heart: STUPID FANCOMICS:heart:


Discovery (A Transformers Animated Fancomic): Read the entire thing here. Placed there for archival purpose. Recently cancelled.

:heart: OTHER STUFF:heart:


Archive / Archive 2
If you ever want list of links to all the reviews/rants/analysis/time-wasters I wrote.

My Twitter: Follow me ramble in 100+ words or less here.

My Tumblr: Lots of pretty pictures I like.
  • Listening to: Strange Magic
  • Reading: Yes Please/Gamespite Vol. 4
  • Watching: Various
  • Playing: Nothing Right Now
  • Eating: Rice, Sausges, and Tomatoes
  • Drinking: Water
:bulletblue:If you want to read my reviews for previous Transformers shows, click here for the first archives or here for the second archives.


PREVIOUS SEASON ONE REVIEWS:
1+2. Pilot
3. Trust Exercises
4. More than Meets the Eye
5. W.W.O.D
6. As the Kospego Commands!
7. Collect 'Em All!
8. True Colors
9. Rumble In the Jungle

:bulletred: As always, SPOILERS!




ROBOTS IN DISGUISE EPISODE 10: CAN YOU DIG IT?
(The Tao of Jazz)





”You tryin’ too hard. If Bee put you on his team, that’s good enough for me. Just do what you do.”

Ped can dig it; I’m a little reluctant myself. “Can You Dig It” attempts to dissect another angle of Sideswipe beyond his supposed distrust for authority. He harps on his rebellious desires, but Sideswipe’s arguably the one who has undergone the most character development so far. He’s always been a decent kid who needed guidance. Being on Bee's team on a foreign planet opens a layer that he’s kept hidden. Sideswipe tries and though Strongarm isn’t as receptive, he’s earned enough trust from the rest that he may finally have a clearer objective of his future.

He’s also a teenager and that age gap is bound to confuse him about a lot of things in life (wait till he reaches Bee’s age.) Unfortunately his temporarily self-esteem issue is clumsily out-of-character for him. Sideswipe’s fanboy worship towards Jazz is adorable; the so-called “Parents-Don’t-Attention-Rebel” looks up a law figure in spite of himself. Perhaps Sideswipe just think he’s cool without really caring what Jazz’s background is; I think it’s further proof Sideswipe was never meant for a future selling Cyber-drugs. Otherwise, where did this reluctance come from? He’s goofed up before and that’s never stopped him. Sure, he’s goofing off in front of a personal hero, but it feels contrived to teach a standard “Be Yourself” message. If there’s one thing Sideswipe is good at, it’s being himself.

It’s good to see another Autobot, guest appearance or not. Leave it to Transformers to get me legitimately excited whenever a new toy arrives. Jazz is, well, Jazz. He’s smooth, he goes with the flow, and worrying is a minimum issue with him. Minus the lack of responsibility, he has Hakuna Mutata down to a science. Importantly, he reveals the aftermath of Cybertron after Bee’s little stunt. The council isn’t happy and sent Jazz as a representative to bring Bee back and explain what the blooming hell he’s been drinking when he activated that space bridge. Fortunately Jazz is an understanding soul and is more than happy to deliver the the team's true intent to the High Council. Yo, wouldn't it be neat if one of the councils used to be a member of Optimus' crew and said person knows Jazz and Bee are friends? So maybe this Council member specifically sent Jazz knowing he'd be able to talk with Bee, whatever the result may be.



Ped’s intimidating appearance belies his fantastic—fantastic—voice. Remember that scene in Pixar’s Up when that scary Rottweiler first makes his appearance with the squeaky Helium voice? That’s Ped. He’s one of the nastier looking Cons (partially on virtue of being a freakin’ bug) with claws that would have Freddy Kruger pissing his pants, but then you hear his voice. His Mike Tyson voice. Mike freakin’ “I want to bite off your audio receptor off” Tyson voice and somehow it’s the damn funniest thing ever. Cheap? Maybe, but it put a smile on my face, so sue me.

“Can You Dig It?” was a lot better on second viewing. The first time left me with a severe case of Dying-From-Boredom Syndrome. I’m not particularly sure why I was drowning off, but I think the Monster of the Week formula is already running thin for me. Repetition is usually not a factor with me; plenty of cartoons rely on a certain story structure that works to its advantage. Regular Show is one of my current favorite and a good 90% of their stuff is “What did Mordecai and Rigby do now and how can they fix this mess?” The thing is, Regular Show uses ten minute formats and its smaller timeframe means I’m not as restless as I would a half hour. That extra ten minutes does make a world of difference (at the least, it probably explains my lack of patience.) Robots in Disguise hasn’t been versatile outside of that formula. Jazz’s arrival is a nice touch. Not to mention there are hints of something greater involving Optimus and his Magic Ghost Quest as well as Steeljaw’s army, but I need something more to happen soon. The cast of characters is what keeps me going. Bee and his team of misfits are incredibly diverse and possess amazing chemistry with each other and it’s to the show’s strengths that I care for each and every one of them (Russell is still the exception, but I’m hoping for any kind of development in the near future.) Hopefully that'll be enough to carry me through until the show grows its beard.
:star::star::star::star: OUT OF FIVE STARS


BONUS OBSERVATIONS


AND A MILLION FANART WAS BORN: Kissing is not a thing in Cybertron, meaning the fans have likely gotten on that shit and either drew all the kissing kiss goodness or got super creative on how the Aligned Transformers shows affection.

POLITICAL SNAFU: Last episode, Strongarm dreamed of being president, leaving me to wonder if Cybertron has a new political system after the war’s end. This episode reveals the council is still a thing that exists. So either presidency is only in a specific part of Cybertron or the President and the High Council have some kind of pseudo-political team up…somehow (Note: I doubt this is the case.)

THAT’S A SNUG HOLE: My first thought when Jazz and Sideswipe was wrestling Ped in the stasis pod was something much more dirtier than what it actually was.

BEST LINE:

SIDESWIPE: They don’t play by other people’s rules; they don’t want to be like everyone else.
FIXIT: Then why do they wear the same rackets…packets…jackets?
SIDESWIPE: They wear the jackets to show they’re different…in the same way.

You tried, Sideswipe. As the wise Homer once said, “You tried your best, but you failed miserably. The lesson is, never try.”

RUNNER-UP:

JAZZ: Bee! What are you doing in this dump?
DENNY: Whooooa, watch the language!

The great part is Denny covers Russell’s ears because he thinks “dump” is just that offensive. XD






____________________________________________________________________________________________

:heart: STUPID FANCOMICS:heart:


Discovery (A Transformers Animated Fancomic): Read the entire thing here. Placed there for archival purpose. Recently cancelled.

:heart: OTHER STUFF:heart:


Archive / Archive 2
If you ever want list of links to all the reviews/rants/analysis/time-wasters I wrote.

My Twitter: Follow me ramble in 100+ words or less here.

My Tumblr: Lots of pretty pictures I like.</i>
  • Listening to: Various
  • Reading: Yes Please/Gamespite Vol. 3
  • Watching: Game Grumps
  • Playing: Grim Fandango
  • Eating: Stuff
  • Drinking: Pepsi
:bulletblue:If you want to read my reviews for previous Transformers shows, click here for the first archives or here for the second archives.


PREVIOUS SEASON THREE REVIEWS

53. Land Before Prime
54. Big Game

55. Too Many Kades
56. Phantom of the Sea
57. Unfinished Business
58. No Place Like Dome
59. Bugs in the System
60. Switcheroo
61. Bot-Tastic Voyage
62. Quarry's Quarry
63. Did You See What I Thaw
64. The Attack of Humungado
65. All Bots Great and Small
66. Time After Time
67. Pirates Ahoy
68. Turning the Tide
69. The Last of Morocco
70. The New Recruits
71. Rescue Bots Academy
72. A New Hero


:bulletred: As always, SPOILERS!




RESCUE BOTS EPISODE 73. FOUR-LEGGED HERO
(How much is that robo-doggie in the window…)


image


”Servo is not a pet; he’s a Cybertronian helper dog and right now, he’s not helping.”

Knowing the purpose behind the Transformers franchise, I always welcome new gimmicks and elements to its tie-in television shows because most of the time, the writers can squeeze a decent and often excellent excuse why This New Character is here or This New Gadget will be used. Transformers has an unusually good talent for that and I think it speaks highly of the creators who either care or adore the franchise so much that they are willing to do it justice. It’s separated Transformers from other toy brands for a longest time because the legion of fan loyalty is so high its unique and almost unprecedented. Any toy addendum will often be used properly within the context of the show.

Rescue Bots’ sea of fancy knickknacks have been a frequent occurrence throughout the show, but season three has been bombarded with them to a bit of their detriment: Dinobot modes, new Cybertronians, a giant transforming ship, etc. Even for a toyetic show, this is ridiculous. After all, the only “fresh” additional to season two was a barely used truck-a-saurus hummer fire truck (technically a season one finale, but still) and Energize tools (something the crew still makes good use of.) The Dinobot alt modes is the gimmick that suffered the most because it derives the question, “What does dinosaurs have anything to do with first responding?” Nothing. The thing about a good gimmick is how well integrated it is and what use it can give to our wayward crew. But toy companies think on a different level than the writers, animators, directors, etc. They’re often at the mercy of the Hasbro overlords and have to find a way to make this work.* They tried, they really did, but nothing about their dinosaur modes add anything to the Rescue Bots’ growing repertoire, even if it gives Blades super awesome sonic wave blasts. The only wise decision is that the creators only bring it out when they absolutely have to, arguably for the best.

Then there’s Servo whom I’m not sure how to feel.

Servo should have me enthralled; I love dogs. I feckin’ love dogs. They’re the best animals ever and no one can tell me otherwise. I would have been ecstatic if Cody kept Noble the puppy back in season two’s “Rescue Dog”, but Servo leaves me with an oddly lukewarm feeling. A robot dog transforming into a handy toolbox felt the gimmickest of the gimmick. Because it’s an animal, Servo doesn’t have the luxury of having a personality outside of “doing dog things” to let him stand out (then again, this might have also happened to Noble if Cody had kept him.) His purpose is to be an aid to the Rescue Bots, acting as a convenient toolbox because Graham forgot his wrench back at the station. Servo hasn’t bothered me since his initial appearance, but that’s largely because he hasn’t done anything to annoy me. Servo helps when needed, but that’s about it. But I can’t say the dog is a riveting character that Salvage and Blurr were; two bots I wished had stayed instead of Rin-Tin-Tin over here.

That said, “Four-Legged Hero” is the cutest, most adorablest, sugar-coated, rainbow-brightening, gush-worthy episode ever. It’s exactly the kind of feeling I would get whenever I see a dog in real life (I am so the person who instantly goes over to a person’s house and pets the dog.) The thing is, it’s not because of Servo. No, the real star is Luskey’s wife’s little ragamuffin, the tragically named Poopsie.

Poopsie develops an affection for Servo that I can only interpret as a doggie crush after Servo saves her. She repays his kindness by going to truly death-defying lengths to win Servo’s heart, unaware the stuff she gives Servo and the situation she puts him through unintentionally causes the public to assume the worst of the robo-dog. Servo tries to do the right thing. The episode wisely gave him a simple, internal dilemma where he must be a proper non-sentient robot who obeys his human masters or act on his own for the greater good. And that damn Poopsie keeps mucking it up. It’s highly amusing to see Servo gently rejecting Poopsie’s gifts. In any other situation, would Servo have accepted?

"Four-Legged Hero” gives Servo a bit of character, though it didn't endear me to him. If anything, his whole “secret identity risk” has become a dime-a-dozen plot by this point. I actually came off liking Poopsie more. She saved the episode with her tenacity and her determination to win Servo’s mechanical spark. I don’t know, I think it’s just freakin’ adorable. Granted, cuteness alone doesn’t save the episode, but It’s nice that Servo got a focus with a logical conflict.
:star::star::star: AND A HALF OUT OF FIVE STARS

image



BONUS OBSERVATIONS



HEY, THE CROSS-EYED LION’S BACK: He was last seen all the back in season one.


*To the best of my knowledge anyway; I do not claim to know how Hasbro and their relationship with the people behind the TV show works.




____________________________________________________________________________________________

:heart: STUPID FANCOMICS:heart:


Discovery (A Transformers Animated Fancomic): Read the entire thing here. Placed there for archival purpose. Recently cancelled.

:heart: OTHER STUFF:heart:


Archive / Archive 2
If you ever want list of links to all the reviews/rants/analysis/time-wasters I wrote.

My Twitter: Follow me ramble in 100+ words or less here.

My Tumblr: Lots of pretty pictures I like.
  • Listening to: Various
  • Reading: Yes Please/Gamespite Vol. 3
  • Watching: Game Grumps
  • Playing: Grim Fandango
  • Eating: Nothing Right Now
  • Drinking: Pepsi
:bulletblue:If you want to read my reviews for previous Transformers shows, click here for the first archives or here for the second archives.


PREVIOUS SEASON ONE REVIEWS:
1+2. Pilot
3. Trust Exercises
4. More than Meets the Eye
5. W.W.O.D
6. As the Kospego Commands!
7. Collect 'Em All!
8. True Colors

:bulletred: As always, SPOILERS!




ROBOTS IN DISGUISE EPISODE 9: RUMBLE IN THE JUNGLE
(Pride cometh before a fall)





“Personal journal: I have driven 2,000 miles from the scrapyard and my pistons are positively tingling! Successfully completing this mission might mean a promotion. Sergeant Strongarm…Lieutenant Strongarm…President Strongarm!”

Here’s an interesting difference between Strongarm and Chase. The latter is presumably the Cybertronian equivalent of an adult and thus has come to an expectation that rules exist for a reason and must be followed to its strictest circumstances. He rarely bypasses this train of thought and is quick to whip out a code or law at any given moment. Chase doesn’t think outside the box that often – it’s such a foreign concept to him – and it takes time for him to bend the rules a little to accomplish his goals. Strongarm tries to live by this moral standard, but she’s a bundle of joy compared to the ol’ Rescue Bot. She’s very much a child and much like teenagers are apt to do, they tend to break or twist the rules to their own whim. Strongarm’s philosophy is exactly like Chase’s, but she finds loopholes or disobey her own line of thinking in order to get the job done much quicker than he did. A lot of this, I think, has to do with her youthful age. Strongarm leaps without thinking because she believes it’s justified through her central beliefs. Why wouldn’t she be right? She’s a cop who’s always obeyed the laws. That line of thinking might have worked for her back in Cybertron, but it only means so much on Earth. She’s had to adapt and change some of her perspective in order to survive, even compromising at times.

Strongarm’s the least adjusted of the five, as evident in “Collect ‘Em All”, but she tries. So when Bumblebee sends her on a solo mission, Strongarm has a chance to prove her worth to her superior and for all Cybertronian cops everywhere.  The opening intro reveals she’s got big dreams and possible delusions of grandeur, but her actions prove she’s got ways to go.  When Bee won’t stop babying her, Strongarm purposely lies to him about backup arriving in a bid to secure her original goal an ironically self-reliant, responsible cop. This is very much a rookie, teenage thing to do. Strongarm is so obsessed with what she thinks she can do that she doesn’t realize there are limits to her abilities and her ill-actions put her and Bee in jeopardy. Yet when given the chance, Strongarm is resourceful and she knows it. The episode is a humbling experience for her and a vital lesson on biting off more than she can chew.

Not that Bumblebee is any better. His heart is in the right place. He sent Strongarm on a simple recon mission, but sneakily tags along out of concern. Strongarm is not amused by this and questions her superior officer. It does say something about Bee’s leadership that he doesn’t trust her enough to work out a mission by herself, especially since he did give her the go-ahead. At some point, you gotta cut the umbilical cord. Buuuut she did bug him until he relented and her irrational behavior only prove Bee’s point. Lack of faith isn’t good moral support for your troop, but so is pride. There has to be a balance and compromises have to be made. Strongarm isn’t ready, but Bee knows if he keeps cuddling her, she won’t gain the experience needed for future missions, one where he won’t or can’t be involved in. He gives her another shot and she successfully captures Springload alongside her boss. Like strongarm, Bee’s internal logic is how to be a proper leader and making hard decisions like this is par for the course. You and Animated Optimus could have an entire plate of discussion there, buddy.



That’s also the central line of thinking with the Denny/Fixit subplot. Neither one refuses to acknowledge their skills, choosing to annoy one another until they give in. It is through the act of teamwork that they find a satisfying ground. They compromised and find a better solution to their woes. And hey, they fixed the Decepticon Hunter, so progress!
:star::star::star::star: OUT OF FIVE STARS



BONUS OBSERVATIONS


DEMOCRACY IS THE RIGHT OF ALL SENTIENT BEINGS: Strongarm mentions being President someday. Is this the new line of government for the Autobots? Is presidency only relegated to a specific part of Cybertron? Either way, it’s a neat little world builder. Maybe the Autobots realized having a council is no longer the best method after the war ended. *shrugs*

OH THE SUSPENSE IS KILLING ME! I don’t know why they bother to conceal Bee until the opening theme finished, it’s obviously him.

BEST LINE:

STRONGARM: Fixit, good news. Springload fell into my lap. I’ve made the arrest, no need to send in backup.
FIXIT:  All this happened since we last spoke 60 seconds ago?
STRONGARM: …Yes. Remember, we’re in a different time zone!
FIXIT: Oh! Well…good, congratulations and see all three of you when you get back.

This dialogue is better heard than written, but it’s a gem.

RUNNER-UP

DENNY: You moved my snow sleds next to the microwaves?! What kind of system is THAT!?
FIXIT: Alphabetical. Cybertronian alphabet.

Fixit, you troll.





____________________________________________________________________________________________

:heart: STUPID FANCOMICS:heart:


Discovery (A Transformers Animated Fancomic): Read the entire thing here. Placed there for archival purpose. Recently cancelled.

:heart: OTHER STUFF:heart:


Archive / Archive 2
If you ever want list of links to all the reviews/rants/analysis/time-wasters I wrote.

My Twitter: Follow me ramble in 100+ words or less here.

My Tumblr: Lots of pretty pictures I like.
  • Listening to: Various
  • Reading: Yes Please/Gamespite Vol. 3
  • Watching: Rick and Morty
  • Playing: Nothing Right Now
  • Eating: Nothing Right Now
  • Drinking: Water
:bulletblue:If you want to read my reviews for previous Transformers shows, click here for the first archives or here for the second archives.


PREVIOUS SEASON ONE REVIEWS:
1+2. Pilot
3. Trust Exercises
4. More than Meets the Eye
5. W.W.O.D
6. As the Kospego Commands!
7. Collect 'Em All!


:bulletred: As always, SPOILERS!




ROBOTS IN DISGUISE EPISODE 8: TRUE COLORS
(The closest thing to Clever Girl we're going to get.)





”Oh, I can definitely squish him…but then, I’m not a bad guy.”

Grimlock being a Decepticon in a team of Autobots is an interesting angle that I stated as A Thing that needed to be explored in future episodes. “True Colors” isn’t what I had in mind, but that’s before I realized Grimlock wasn’t going to be anything but a well-meaning goofball. Keep in mind this is not a bad thing whatsoever. Grimlock was the surprise character for me. I don’t care for The Big Guys; they just never did much for me. Yet Grimlock’s enthuasium for violence and eagerness to be a team player earned a spot in my cold, cold heart. He took it to such extreme levels, but it’s balanced with a level of silliness that makes him endearing. He is too simpleminded—too kindhearted—and comical to dedicate a story on the philosophical differences between Bots and Cons. “True Colors” instead roots itself into something far fitting for his character.

The episode is clever about Grimlock’s sudden transformation into an antagonist; he attacks and insults his team (often in that order) and escapes with Underbite in tow. For a bit, we’re to assume he truly did turncoat until Russell realizes he’s “talking to himself.” I like the individual cast’s reactions to this unexpected development. Naturally, Strongarm is quick to accuse Grimlock without taking anything in account, thinking he’d play them all for saps. Sideswipe remains Grimlock’s biggest supporter, showing a likable demonstration of loyalty and friendship he wouldn’t have cared for as much in the first episode. Out of the main five, Sideswipe has shown the most growth and the Rebel-Turned-Hero understands what it’s like to have fingers pointed in his direction, whether he was responsible or not. Appropriately, Bumblebee is the Middle Man; he refuses to jump the gun like Strongarm has, but exercises precaution in case Grimlock has been yanking their chain the whole time. This leaves Smart Guy Fixit and Russell to figure out what’s really up with Grimlock: his body has been taken over by a miniature Con named - wait for it - Minitron.

I also love Fixit trying to confront the currently deranged Grimlock when past episodes had him cowering behind Russell. Aww, Fixit’s growing a spine.



I cannot begin to tell you the amazing reactions Bee’s team gets when they discover Minitron. The critter sneaks up on all the bots and Bee is literally screaming bloody murder trying to get it off, careening into an awkward pile of tangled robot bodies as they try to pry the little jackass off. I wish I could snap a screenshot for you, but this is something that works better in motion. It’s hilarious.

If Grimlock doesn’t have the necessary brainpower to delve into a political rant about the unfair treatment of Decepticons, there is one guy who can: Steeljaw. I got to say, I like Steeljaw’s attitude to his underlings. He’s not above helping the possessed Grimlock carry Underbite (citing a leader as equal to his people) nor does he callously dismiss him for running away from the Autobots (“cowardly”, you ran away, too, Steeljaw!) A lot of his patience could be the charisma he carries and uses to keep the other Cons loyal and at bay, but Animated Megatron’s savvy intellectual and suave sexiness. So far, Steeljaw is a class act and I’m glad they didn’t settle for a Punch-First, Scream-Second, Think-Later (not necessarily in that order) baddie.

This is the first time the Autobots confronted Steeljaw and his growing posse and I got to admit it’s not as heated or dramatic as it could have been. For a show as lighthearted as this, the eighth episode probably wouldn’t be fueled by intense life-or-death situations, but I really wished it had a little more, ya know?

This episode reveals Grimlock was locked in the Alchemor for property damage. In the Grand List of Shit the Decepticons Did, “property damage” seems the least offensive. If we’re going to count the entirety of the Aligned Continuity somehow, then Grimlock was an Autobot in the past before this show slapped a Con label on him. If that’s the case, I find it telling he was jailed for cause of destruction (understandably justified), but did they brand him as a Con because of it? Remember, the war ended with the Autobots winning, who’s to say bias isn’t heavily in their favor? Imagine an Animated-style xenophobic, classist government structure. You know, the very thing Megatron chided in the first place? This is why Steeljaw’s speech back in episode 3 feels so much more poignant even if he’s likely a manipulative Lying Liar who Lies. That’s my current theory anyway.
:star::star::star::star: OUT OF FIVE STARS


BONUS OBSERVATIONS


THAT’S A LOT OF HARMONICA PLAYING: I wonder how long the miniature Con was trapped that he still thinks Optimus is alive?

LITTLE GUY, BIG NAME: Minitron might be an appropriate name for the tiny tick, but I love the “-tron” at the end; it’s like he deliberately decided to curb from Megatron’s naming scheme to make himself feel bigger than he actually is. Dream big, little guy, dream big.

SPEAKING OF NAME DROPS: Also gotta love Strongarm specifically cried out Solus Prime’s name.

BEST LINES: ”The comm-system will either work or be caught in a fiery explosion! Heh, 50/50.”

I like those odds!




____________________________________________________________________________________________

:heart: STUPID FANCOMICS:heart:


Discovery (A Transformers Animated Fancomic): Read the entire thing here. Placed there for archival purpose. Recently cancelled.

:heart: OTHER STUFF:heart:


Archive / Archive 2
If you ever want list of links to all the reviews/rants/analysis/time-wasters I wrote.

My Twitter: Follow me ramble in 100+ words or less here.

My Tumblr: Lots of pretty pictures I like.
  • Listening to: Freedom Planet - Fortune Nights Act 1
  • Reading: Yes Please/Gamespite Vol. 3
  • Watching: Agents of SHIELD
  • Playing: Nothing right now
  • Eating: Burrito
  • Drinking: Pepsi
:bulletblue:If you want to read my reviews for previous Transformers shows, click here for the first archives or here for the second archives.


PREVIOUS SEASON THREE REVIEWS

53. Land Before Prime
54. Big Game

55. Too Many Kades
56. Phantom of the Sea
57. Unfinished Business
58. No Place Like Dome
59. Bugs in the System
60. Switcheroo
61. Bot-Tastic Voyage
62. Quarry's Quarry
63. Did You See What I Thaw
64. The Attack of Humungado
65. All Bots Great and Small
66. Time After Time
67. Pirates Ahoy
68. Turning the Tide
69. The Last of Morocco
70. The New Recruits
71. Rescue Bots Academy



:bulletred: As always, SPOILERS!




RESCUE BOTS EPISODE 72: A NEW HERO
(I need a Hero!)




”I like to give things second chances.”
”Or in Blurr’s case, seventh or eighth.”
“See, you haven’t given up on him either.”


Yeah, I think “Rescue Bots Academy” really did pad things out because “A new Hero” takes a bit of time getting to the final climax. It’s a whole lot of back and forth between the main cast trying to prevent the latest disaster and Blurr slinking aboard the stolen spaceship. The latter goes back and forth on his decision to split, guiltiness eating up on him. It’s a crappy feeling to be sure, but it’s further honed by Optimus’ relentless messages, IRVIS unwittingly bringing up his doubt, and Cody’s past encouragement. Blurr thinks of the kid a lot because he not only kept believing in him, but was very vocal about it. A renegade satellite on a collision course is enough for Blurr's heart to grow three sizes that day and he nearly sacrifices himself to stop it.

It was at this point that “A New Hero” dropped the ball.

It turns out Salvage and Blurr’s visit is only temporarily; Optimus decides to hoist the two to another Earth location. On theory, I can understand the reasoning: spread out your ranks means more benevolent rescues from high powered alien robots as well as slowly opening a door between the two species. Where Optimus plans to send them is questionable; Griffin Rock and its tech-based island is an exception from the normal norms of every other world. I guess the US government can bullshit Salvage and Blurr as imports from Griffin Rock. It’s either that or whisks them off to Japan. The kids and Otaku would love ‘em.

The ending is a resounding disappointment and it sadly reflects the show as a whole. It gave us three episodes that introduced two new characters that were practically begging to be sixth rangers to the main squad. we got new cast members and new conflicts to deal with. The potential to take the story another step was there; a path in their interlocking road of awesome science and adventure has been revealed. adding two new guys added another sandbox for the writers to play with, so what happened? High Tide made sense as a guest star; he showed up in his debate episode and ensured the crew he wouldn't be a part of their posse. This? This was a waste of time and it irritatingly reverts everything back to status quo.

The show isn't brimming with Greg Wisemanian continuity and its episodic nature is beneficial for this kind of show, but it does have it and has embraced continuity and change before, however minor it may be. Heck, even the spaceship surviving despite actually saying the risk of losing it would be a huge factor doesn’t happen. Cody and Salvage also shared a rapport that felt like a future partnership just waiting to be explored. Why do I have this nasty feeling this was a Hasbro executive decision?



But I think Blurr and IRVIS would make a fantastic comedy duo together; the latter is surprisingly JARVIS-levels of stoically-toned snark.

The rescue mission itself is both terrifying and inspiring. It;s a contradicting combination that emphasizes the best and worst of Griffin Rock. You have an entire island of high tech that people rely on every day. Then the sun farts out a solar flare and knocks them all down. None of this prevents the Burns family from doing their job nor does it stop Doc from using his inventive mind to power GLaDOS a calculator with a potato. A Transformers Animated episode (“Nature Calling”) had Prowl calling out the dangers of technology reliance. Sari points out that there must be a harmonious nature between both organics and machinery and I think that alone extends to the nature of human and bot resourcefulness. Solar flares and the possibility of them messing up technology scare the crap out of me, but seeing episodes like this has a comforting optimism to it. That in spite of any downfall, humanity—and robots—will never give up. They will pick themselves up and damn well survive.  

“A New Hero” suffers some ill-pacing, but was an otherwise solid episode. Unfortunately the finale left a bad taste in my mouth. I want to give the benefit of the doubt that the creators have something up their sleeves and if there’s one show that can do that, it’s Rescue Bots. But all that build-up has gone to waste and the last three episodes are lesser for it.
:star::star: AND A HALF OUT OF FIVE STARS



BONUS OBSERVATIONS


”BLURR NATHANIEL WEASLEY!”



“HOW DARE YOU STEAL THAT SPACESHIP! I AM ABSOLUTELY DISGUSTED! YOUR LEADER’S NOW FACING AN INQUIRY AT WORK AND IT'S ENTIRELY YOUR FAULT! IF YOU PUT ANOTHER TOE OUT OF LINE WE'LL BRING YOU STRAIGHT HOME! — Oh, and Salvage dear, congratulations on making the Rescue Bot team. Ratchet and I are so proud."

SPEAKING OF OPTIMUS: Okay, I know he’s a Prime and thus the Most Specialist Snowflake ever, but is it really up to him to create Rescue Bot logos for Blurr and Salvage? Shouldn’t this really be more of a Heatwave thing? He’s the Rescue Bot leader. Granted, a leader of one squad and not a whole, but Griffin Rock’s Bots are the whole. If anything, it would have shown Heatwave willing to give Blurr another chance.

BEST LINE: ”Excuse me, Chief, I’ve never done that before…and I’m quite embarrassed.”

It’s okay, Chase, you’re not the only one who can’t get it up.




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:bulletblue:If you want to read my reviews for previous Transformers shows, click here for the first archives or here for the second archives.


PREVIOUS SEASON ONE REVIEWS:
1+2. Pilot
3. Trust Exercises
4. More than Meets the Eye
5. W.W.O.D
6. As the Kospego Commands!



:bulletred: As always, SPOILERS!









”I realize that you, and Grimlock, and Fixit—even Sideswipe—you’re my ties to Cybertron, more than any rule book.”

I would argue “Collect ‘Em All” is a series of subplots than one major storyline with a side B-plot. Sure, the main goal is to catch Filch, but the episode is peppered with tiny character moments that make the episode.

Strongarm’s subplot provides the central heart. Being homesick has caused her to break out into the robotic equivalent of hives (or some kind of rash anyway.) She largely keeps this to herself, but Bumblebee notices and has a nice chat with her.  While I don’t think this is as emphasized as it could have been, I think it works as a greater whole with Strongarm’s character. She would be the Bot in the team to stress out first. Her strict upbringing and struggle to stick to a certain protocol is only going to work so far, especially on a foreign planet with different sets of rules and laws. Strongarm’s first connection to Cybertron after her teammates is her trusty code book. I think it keeps her stabilized and comforts her, even if going by-the-book often drives her batty when it doesn’t go the way it’s supposed to. Unfortunately she doesn’t have a cop for a partner or is part of a rescue square like Chase, so there’s little familiarity there. So Strongarm does what she has to do: step out of the books and improvise.

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Filch is the definition of one-note villain and that’s a damn shame. Other than it being the first female to pop up after Strongarm so far, she’s also got a killer design. The other baddies aren’t exactly filled with depth, living up to their own archetypes (with the possible exception of Steeljaw who’s shown the most depth out of all the Cons thus far), but they live up to their roles. Filch does what the Autobots say she does (stealing shiny objects), but it seems less a character trait as it is an instinctual desire. I guess if anything it lives up to her animal appearance.

Russell’s subplot isn’t doing jack to endear me anymore to the boy than he had at the start. He invites his father’s “old friend” Larry inside the junkyard despite Denny’s strong objection to the latter and his questionably amoral objective. Russell uses Larry’s Hollywood power to film Denny’s scrapyard and buy a ticket to fame and Crown City despite risking the Autobot’s existence to a stranger. Of course Russell learns a lesson because the boy isn’t a total asshole, but I spent much of the episode rolling my eyes at him. Being selfish shouldn’t be a character denouncement; people need flaws to work out, but maybe I’d be less annoyed with Russell’s antics if he was likable in the first place. Kid, here’s a lesson I learned at a very young age: you don’t always get what you want.

All the middling stories mean “Collect ‘em All” is kind of scattered.I think the reoccurring theme of collecting keeps the episode balanced though. There are those who want the goods for themselves and will use underhanded tactics to get them and then there are people like Denny who collect just because they love to collect. I don’t know if this was intentional, but the creators seem to have Transformers collectors in mind when they wrote this episode. We're a varied bunch, both the good and the unfortunate bad.
:star::star::star::star: OUT OF FIVE STARS


BONUS OBSERVATIONS


HE TRIES:



What was that stupid Tumblr phrase? Ahh yes, Grimlock is a beautiful cinnamon role too good for this Earth.

GENERATIONAL GAP: Oh, I never noticed this before. Russell’s phone is standard smartphone in appearance while Denny has an older model. This is a neat and subtle detail to the kind of people they are. Russell is all about the sleek and now, but Denny adores the old and dated. Heck, if it he could fix it to work with modern phone reception, he’d probably get one of those blocky 90s cellphones instead.

BEST LINE:

BUMBLEBEE: Filch: compulsive thief.
GRIMLOCK: Does it say “Future Punch Taker” cuz’ she’s gonna be that, too.

You’re incorrigible, Grimlock.

WORST LINE: ”Watch the birdie!”

To be fair, I can totally see Strongarm’s insults being as lame as the one she spouted here.



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Archive / Archive 2
If you ever want list of links to all the reviews/rants/analysis/time-wasters I wrote.

My Twitter: Follow me ramble in 100+ words or less here.

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  • Listening to: Various
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  • Eating: Rice, eggs, and pickled veggies
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:bulletblue:If you want to read my reviews for Rescue Bots Season One and Two, click here: neoyi.deviantart.com/journal/A…


PREVIOUS SEASON THREE REVIEWS

53. Land Before Prime
54. Big Game

55. Too Many Kades
56. Phantom of the Sea
57. Unfinished Business
58. No Place Like Dome
59. Bugs in the System
60. Switcheroo
61. Bot-Tastic Voyage
62. Quarry's Quarry
63. Did You See What I Thaw
64. The Attack of Humungado
65. All Bots Great and Small
66. Time After Time
67. Pirates Ahoy
68. Turning the Tide
69. The Last of Morocco
70. The New Recruits



:bulletred:As always, SPOILERS!










”Taking the easy way out, aren’t you?”
“Believe me, nothing about you is easy!”


Clip shows are kind of a necessary evil. We, the audiences, sneer at the sight of repeated footage as the cast find contrived means to reflect on past incidents. In reality, a majority of its existence means the people behind your favorite show can take a break. In animation, that likely means a huge collective sigh of relief for the drawers pumping away their souls on every frame.

”Rescue Bots Academy” at least tries to creativity integrate the reused footage in the disguise of a makeshift Rescue Bot training. Each of the Bots take the best of what they’ve done to teach Salvage and Blurr—especially Blurr—the true meaning of selfless sacrifice and teamwork.  This works about as well as you’d expect and I don’t just mean Blurr’s behavior. Curiously for a clip show, there’s a lot of new animation accompanying it. The clip show actually doesn’t take over the episode as much as it could have and the ones that do are very amusing because it highlights the amount of dangerous shit Griffin Rock gets into. The episode is a veritable “Best of” collection of Griffin Rock’s most deadliest.

I’m not particularly raising my hands up in the air though. Being a clip show means the episode largely uses it as an excuse to pad out the rest of the plot. Nothing really happens, but we do get a better insight into Blurr’s character. He’s not just a jerk; he’s a jerk who has no place in the world. Cybertron is gone and he’s far away from familiar planets he’d rather be in. Earth is backwards and confusing and he’s just a fish out of water. Because he’s stuck here, he has to find a way to fit in, but unlike his buddy, Salvage, Blurr hasn’t discovered it yet. Add to his impatience and the justified ire of the rest of the Burns and Bots, this only adds more fuel to the fire. Only the sweet-natured Cody goes out of his way to encourage him. He brushes it off through his ego-boosting, but it’s a constant source of internal conflict. Once he steals the Bot’s spaceship, he once again, runs from his problems. Nice knowing ya, jerk.

For what it is, the episode itself isn’t bad and I can understand the need to take a breather in-between work. It at least attempted to do something in-between clips.
:star::star::star:OUT OF FIVE STARS



BONUS OBSERVATIONS


GENDER ROLES: This episode is interesting for one thing (besides Blurr's characterization, that is): Blurr asks the Rescue Bots about human gender and they explain it to the best of their abilities. Now I bring this up because 1.) I don’t really think Transformers as a whole discusses gender in-universe and 2.) this implies the Aligned Continuity doesn’t have gendered robots or at the least robots with genders that apply the same with human standards.

Now on the one hand, I can’t help but think this is a continuity issue. I distinctly remember Transformers Prime’s Arcee once calling herself a “lady” in front of Jack (episode 11’s “Speed Metal.”) I can’t remember if she did anything similar after, but she rarely referred to herself that way in the show regardless. For all we know, this is just convenient wording for the sake of humans. In-universe, when it comes to the gender debate here versus everything else in the Aligned Continuity, I imagine we have to take it for granted. After all, when has anything in the Aligned Continuity connected with 100% accuracy? I haven’t finished War For Cybertron nor started its sequel, but I can confirm with my best friend that the shit that takes place there doesn’t add up to the TV shows. I’ve read the first mini-series comics of Prime that reveals Cliffjumper and Arcee’s past and it does not match up with episode 43’s “Out of the Past.” Because robot genders are actually something they don’t discuss often if at all, this conversation stuck out a bit for me. I guess this is one of those “Just go with it” kind of thing. There isn't anything in Rescue Bots to contradict this either. "Switcheroo" is probably one of the big ones where Chase and Blades both ends up in the body of Frankie and Dani with neither one commenting on their genders (let it be know Blades twirled in Dani's dress and it was adorable.)

But let’s face it, excusing Cybertronians as non-binary is a whole lot of “Who are we kidding ourselves?” Not because this isn’t a valid reasoning to use on alien robots, but because the general attitude from both a number of fans and professionals behind the franchise DO see most of the robots’ default gender as male. This is why female bots are still necessary no matter how good that excuse is. Luckily, Hasbro seems to be working to include more women, including a female bot for the upcoming season four of Rescue Bots. Good, we need it. No matter what Chase’s explanation is, we need it.

MST3K REFERENCE?



I've never watched MST3K. I probably should.


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:bulletblue:If you want to read my reviews for previous Transformers shows, click here for the first archives or here for the second archives.


PREVIOUS SEASON ONE REVIEWS:
1+2. Pilot
3. Trust Exercises
4. More than Meets the Eye
5. W.W.O.D



:bulletred: As always, SPOILERS!




ROBOTS IN DISGUISE EPISODE 6: AS THE KOSPEGO COMMANDS!
(And now, the latest in human stupidity)





”Give us what we desire or the Kospego shall destroy you ALL!”

“Robots in Disguise” is a frequent misnomer in the Transformers franchise. True, they transform into vehicles for perfect Earth disguises, but the efforts they go to hide their alien identities varies amongst different incarnation. G1, Animated, and the current IDW comics don’t even bother with the charade. It took till movie three in the Bayverse Transformers before their whole cover is blown. Beast Wars/Machines wrote that out via time travel to a prehistoric Earth before settling down on Cybertron. The Aligned Continuity decided they wanted to do something about that whole “disguising” part and actively sought to hide the robots from the general public. Rescue Bots cleverly situated out heroes in a tech-filled island where they act as emotionless, advanced miracles of science. Transformers Prime got a lot of mileage out of canyon settings, excusing the sleepy town of Jasper, Nevada as a whole lot of nothing so the robots can roam freely without being spotted. This still does not excuse the damn Decepticon tower Megatron built at the end of season two. No, Fowler, I don’t buy the damn meteor excuse; you bet your ass some Joe Nobody saw the fucking thing and god that excuse bothers me so much!

Robots in Disguise logically continues where its predecessor left off, but decides to take an even more ambitious twist. (Well, alright, not really, I am certain the following scenario has been done before.) After last episode’s flimsy excuse to cover up a runamuck bull Decepticon, “As the Kospego Commands!” utilizes the whole “human interacts with alien robots” in a smaller, better circle and a lot of that has to do with the sheer gullibility and idiocy of the cult that worships Thunderhoof. They’re just so amusing because they try. They try so hard to be taken seriously, but every one of them is a walking pile of dunderheads. They get the job done, but that's because no human could have figured out what they were stealing random junks for. Being the world’s most pathetic cult probably could have kept them out of the limelight by virtue of not being seriously taken, but Bumblebee knows the scraps they’re harvesting have a connection: a space bridge.

I’m curious: did anyone in Cybertron instigate a search-and-rescue once they noticed a fellow cop was missing? Someone must have noticed Bumblebee was gone. The first episode showed he’s highly revered, so he’s probably well-known. Strongarm is also a member of the law and you can’t tell me cops aren’t going to start investigating when two of their own has gone missing for so long. Or perhaps they are doing exactly that off-screen, but they haven’t had any access to space bridges to get to Earth, if they even know Bee and Strongarm is on Earth in the first place.  Robots in Disguise made it pretty damn clear these guys can’t return to Cybertron; it’s a one-way trip. That’s probably why you’ll often hear a couple of Bee’s team moaning about missing home.

Sideswipes complained about this a couple of times, but it seems to reach a head here where his desire to go back might end up betraying the team. He’s had his moments with Strongarm back in the third episode, but now he’s being tested by the big bot himself (Bee, not Optimus.) Of all the bots, Sideswipe is the closest to being a free-spirit. It’s not that he doesn’t want to be tied down, but he’s expressed a desire to venture off and be his own bot. He doesn’t hesitate to work within the team; the fact that Strongarm riles him up so much is proof how much he cares. There is nothing more frustrating than to be distrusted because you yourself are visibly unreliable. It’s a conflict that I’m sure a lot of teenagers faced. Yeah, you goofed up, but constantly being berated for your mishaps isn’t going to make it any better. Bee’s a good leader though: he constantly criticizes Sideswipe (for good reason, mind you), but is willing to give him second chances to make up for it, showing a lot of faith I feel Sideswipe likely didn’t get until recently. So of course Sideswipe wouldn’t abandon the team and he demonstrates it by dismantling the space bridge alongside Bee, even if said bridge created a scary ass black hole that sucked any unwillingly jackass in.



A particular scene that stood out for me is the beginning when Bee is about to reprimand Sideswipe for his lackadaisy duties, only to be distracted by the music he’s listening to. Bee takes the headphones and jams to the song itself. As a woman nearly approaching her 30s, this was a moment of resonance; a feeling of familiarity of being a young adult shouldered with adult responsibilities and surrounded by rowdy wild cards and worse, teenagers. Yet you aren’t too old enough that you can’t indulge in something fun and childish. His story is my story (as having trained teenagers at my job will attest to) and it’s just great to see that here.  

Speaking of jackasses, Thunderhoof, Thunderhoof, Thunderhoof. Before I watched this episode, scores of fanart of this guy was all over the damn internet (okay, mostly just Tumblr) and he was by far the most popular Decepticon on the show. I anticipated his arrival the most when the episode finally reached American shores, wondering—hoping—he is everything the fans hyped him up to him. After having seen him in action though, I have to admit, I don’t get the appeal. He’s got a nice design, even the stupid antlers work. If he ever got a Warrior class toy, I’d buy it. But otherwise I didn’t connect with him. He’s smarter than most of the other Cons we’ve seen, but the whole mafia thing doesn’t do it for me. So yeah, I don’t quite get it.  



What I do like is the return of Steeljaw and the possibility of him amassing a Decepticon army. Now him I’m intrigued on and this plan he’s building is equally enticing. Also notice Steeljaw immediately swiped the Decepticon logo off of Thunderhoof’s chest like he did his own. Hmm, interesting.
:star::star::star::star: OUT OF FIVE STARS




BONUS OBERVATIONS


THIS IS JUNK. WHAT YOU HAVE IN YOUR MOUTH IS ARRRRRRRRRRRRRRT! So are “robots-posing-whenever-a-human-arrives” deal going to be a reoccurring thing in the show because I like the sound of it. Grimlock pretended to be a giant, metal dinosaur statue in one episode. Today, Fixit plays a little art piece entitled, “Ugly Orange Thing with Pretentious Artsy-Fartsy Pose.”  



The point I’m trying to make is this little moment made me giggle.(I’m also kidding about the ugly thing, Fixit, you’re really adorable looking. Don’t be sad.)

I CAN SEE THE STARS: What is up with that guy in the right corner, he looks so out of it.



Can he be the Derpy Hooves of this show? Can he? …Actually, that might be a poor idea.

TOSSED OFF A MOUNTAIN COMPARISON: Grimlock asked if anyone has ever felt like being thrown off a mountain. Strongarm says “no”, but Bee says “yes.” If you need to understand the world of differences between the two generations, this is a good comparison. I mean, the latter died for a few minutes in Prime.

BEST LINE:

BEE: We don’t have any elephants.
FIXIT: Oh…then what have I been cleaning?!

Do you really want to know, Fixit? Earth can be really gross sometimes.

RUNNER-UPS:

BEE: The music on this planet is great: the melodies are complex and the lyrics frequently have multiple meaning.
SIDESWIPE:  I like the “uhnza-uhnza” part.

Don’t quit your daydream, kid, your brain can’t handle anything else.

I’m also tempt to put any line Grimlock said this episode. His “Which would be bad” is a hilarious example of stating the obvious that I don’t think the joke would have worked half as well if not for the actor’s sheer, dramatic deliverance of it. I love Grimlock so much.

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If you ever want list of links to all the reviews/rants/analysis/time-wasters I wrote.

My Twitter: Follow me ramble in 100+ words or less here.

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  • Listening to: Various
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  • Watching: The Golden Girls
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:bulletblue:If you want to read my reviews for Rescue Bots Season One and Two, click here: neoyi.deviantart.com/journal/A…


PREVIOUS SEASON THREE REVIEWS

53. Land Before Prime
54. Big Game

55. Too Many Kades
56. Phantom of the Sea
57. Unfinished Business
58. No Place Like Dome
59. Bugs in the System
60. Switcheroo
61. Bot-Tastic Voyage
62. Quarry's Quarry
63. Did You See What I Thaw
64. The Attack of Humungado
65. All Bots Great and Small
66. Time After Time
67. Pirates Ahoy
68. Turning the Tide
69. The Last of Morocco

:bulletred: As always, SPOILERS!




RESCUE BOTS, EPISODE 70: THE NEW RECRUITS
(Sixth Rangers)





”Rescue Bots…and others…roll to the rescue!”

Rescue Bots is a show about teamwork. It’s always been about loyalty, friendship, and sacrifice for the greater good. For most of the first season, the Burns and Bots slowly build up a repertoire between each other. The biggest contention came from Heatwave and Kade, both too stubborn that only an act of emergency forced them to put aside their differences long enough to work together and do their damn job. Heatwave also spent most of season one hoping he’d get out of the rescue squad and in with the Big Boys: Optimus’ crew. He doesn’t hesitate to lead the others, but at the point he was just as ready to get the hell out on first notice. Over time, the crew has grown accustomed to each other. They’re not just a bunch of first responders who happen to live and work in the same field; they’re friends and family. They love each other and no one would hesitate to help anyone in danger or their own comrades.



And then there’s this guy!

Blurr is the best new character in Rescue Bots by far, serving as an antithesis to everything the show stands for. Blurr is selfish, impatient, and egotistical. The fact that he went out of his way to abandon the cave people and Salvage—his partner—just to save his own skin shows without a shadow of the doubt which side he’s on: himself. Blurr is a jerk. But that’s precisely why he’s so good for this show. The examples I listed above never delved into the level of asshattery Blurr has pulled. Heatwave wanted to leave his crew and fight in the war, but he learned to wise up and stay with his team. Even if he did left, he was still going to fight for a greater cause. Kade may not always get along with Heatwave, but they know when push comes to shove that their duties is more important than whatever squabble they have. Blurr doesn’t have any of that and it’s his need to work past his self-absorbed personality that makes him an amazingly compelling character. He is the one challenging what Rescue Bots has taught us for the past two-and-half-season.

It is lucky for Blurr that he doesn’t lack total sympathy. He’s guilty for what he’s done and spends most of the episode trying to keep it a secret from the rest. The fact that he’s willing to accept a second chance to improve himself, not to mention his concern for Salvage here and there proves he’s not lacking empathy though. Don’t squander it, buddy.



Salvage kind of has that Gentle Giant thing going for him like Boulder does, but while Boulder is meditative and patient; Salvage is the kid in a candy store. I think it’s clever that they managed to give him a recycling vehicle and associate it with his fondness for building materials out of scrap. What a neat way to teach the young’uns the importance of recycling and creating a likable, visible hobby for him. Salvage is kindhearted, but if the flashback is any indicator, he’s not above beating the shit out of Blurr out of anger and stress. Granted, it’s justified, but it’s a far cry from what Boulder would do. I have no idea if this side of Salvage will be brought up again (probably not because people beating up other people is kinda sorta not a thing Rescue Bots does given its target audience.) I especially like his voice; it’s a perfect combination of his childish enthusiasm and sweetheart nature.

I am mad impressed the level of extent the show pushed Blurr into making such a morally questionable decision. When a shower of meteors struck Earth ten thousand years ago, he was ready to leave Salvage and the cave people (Ira included) behind to their fate. It’s messed up, but I’m glad they went there. It gets across the gravity of the situation and Blurr’s problematic personality. It’s powerful stuff and all the more pushes its theme. I also like the idea that neither Blurr nor Salvage are Rescue Bots (which is also a continuity nod anyway since the first episode established Heatwave’s crew as the last rescue squad left), giving the crew slight variations. It’ll be interesting to see how they will integrate themselves as the latest addition to Team Rescue Bots.

So, are Blurr and Salvage going to get human partners, too? If so, I predict Doc Green will go with Salvage. Both of them can build powerful shit together, for better or worse. Imagine Frankie teaming up with Blurr. Her energetic eagerness means Blurr might find her spunkiness appealing. These two could cause a whole heap of trouble together, but imagine the plot potentials!
:star::star::star::star::star: OUT OF FIVE STARS






BONUS OBSERVATIONS


WE WILL REMEMBER THE EAST COAST EARTHQUAKE: I am damn certain Frankie’s “lawn chair” earthquake quip is based on the 2011 earthquake we East Coasters got.



It was a 2.0. People were, like, super upset this happened because this is shit we don’t get often.  

I slept through the aftershock. My sister said the house tilted a little.

RAINBOW RANGERS: With Salvage and Blurr, the Rescue Bots crew is a full rainbow and that makes me giddy. Okay, there’s no indigo, but still. I guess High Tide can fill in that color, but he’s actually a lighter shade of blue than Chase. Maybe he’s the blue while Chase could be indigo…even though High Tide isn’t really a Rescue Bot team. Yes, I thought about this too much.



____________________________________________________________________________________________

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Archive
If you ever want a list of links to all the reviews/rants/analysis/time-wasters I wrote.

My Twitter: Follow me ramble in 100+ words or less here.

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REQUESTS: No, I do not. Sorry.
  • Listening to: Various
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  • Playing: Alan Wake
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:bulletblue:If you want to read my reviews for previous Transformers shows, click here: neoyi.deviantart.com/journal/A…

PREVIOUS SEASON ONE REVIEWS:
1+2. Pilot
3. Trust Exercises
4. More than Meets the Eye


:bulletred: As always, SPOILERS!




ROBOTS IN DISGUISE EPISODE 5: W.W.O.D
(Speak greatly and carry a big axe)



image


”My team doesn’t listen to me and it makes me wonder if I’m cut out to be their leader.”

A staple in nostalgia-ladled Transformers lore is the lure that which Peter Cullen carries with his voice. I’ve chided the Aligned Continuity Optimus many times for his pretentiousness and seemingly dues ex machina nature in Rescue Bots alone (seriously, he pops up friggin’ everywhere like a daisy with a convenient answer), but I can’t say a single bad thing about his voice. It is perfect for the kind of character he is. The gravelly, soft-spoken, deep baritone voice that oozes out of Optimus defines and enhances him as a commanding leader to the Autobots. It is a worthy, godly voice. It is infamously beloved among fans, but rarely has it been an actual subject worth discussing in-universe. Bumblebee thinks the key to great leadership is imitating Optimus and what better way than to channel his booming presence with a voice only angels could comprehend without falling in awe? It works…for a while. Unfortunately this isn't who Bumblebee is.

He’s  been in doubt over his role, stuck under Optimus’ shadow when he knows—OP knows—that he has to be his own. But doing that doesn’t seem to be doing a whole lot of good, so Bee tries to be someone else. Obviously it fails, so he finds his own methods to capture the latest Con and all is right for the time being. It’s a fairly straight, simple insight into Bee’s dilemma, but an appropriate one nonetheless. That’s largely been the case with the current set of episodes. The characters’ personalities lend themselves to the kind of problems you’d expect, but I’m not saying this as a bad thing. Character development is character development and I won’t mince on that. I especially like that it was Bee’s enthusiasm and knowledge of Earth culture that inspired his plans. It’s not just a character tic, but something that he can actively use.  It’s also hilarious when Bee pulls dramatic gesture every time he plays Optimus. He tries so hard.

Bee mentions his team never gave OP a hard time and it shows a big difference between his time during Prime and now. but I think a part of that is because they were at war. The perspective amongst everyone was grim; their home was a barren wasteland and the bots separated throughout the galaxies. Being happy were rare pleasures you took in. Robots in Disguise serves a nice contrast of what happens when you’re in charge of a group of kids who didn’t grow up or face such traumatizing times. They didn’t know the hardship and sacrifices the older generations had to make to ensure their future would be intact. So they act more impulsive and there’s more laughs around. On the grand scheme, this is a good thing because the future is bright, but it means Bee has to work extra hard to install the sense of leadership and background he grew up in.

image


But as amusing as Bee was, “W.W.O.D” is a fairly standard episode. Actually, I think it kind of drags. Bee’s issue is straightforward enough that it left plenty of room for  Terroshock to run around in all his stupid glory. It’s a weird thing for me to say given this is Transformers, but I tend to drown out when the action overtakes the story longer than it should and “W.W.O.D” does exactly that.

They’re good action, mind you, and the car chase scene in the last act is damn exciting. At the same time, it’s also kind of anti-climatic because you know, at episode five, the show isn’t going to remove the “disguise” portion of “Robots in Disguise” (if we’re even getting to that at all.) I’d be more excited that Bee accidentally exposed himself to the public if it wasn’t so early into the show for a major plot twist. So Denny and Russell managed to produce a decent lie. I admit a part of this is ridiculous because of the extravagance of the car chase scene that really calls to question how dumb these people are, but then again, this Earth is presumably several years older than Present Time Period Transformers Prime, so maybe they do have animatronics that are convincing enough to fool the local denizens. But I’m kind of hoping at some point in the future, some human actually will take this scene and be all “ALIENS ARE AMONG US!” With its lighthearted tone, may I suggest a goody UFO conspiracist?

This episode totally answered my question from the last review: Denny and Russell can go to Crown City whenever they damn well please, so that invites my previous grievance on why it’s such A Big Deal that Russell can’t go. This kid.

Okay, I admit, Denny is growing on me. I stated in my review of the first two episodes how much I detest manchild paternal figures. They’re always portrayed negatively or hardly taken seriously that I’ve dismissed him from the start. But I am really starting to dig Denny. Partially, this is due to Russell’s lacking personality (when he’s not being a sourpuss.) The other is that Denny’s enthusiasm is oddly infectious without the annoyance. He is actually good at helping the Autobots instead of being a needless burden (for that matter, Russell is good about this, too), providing that human factor the Bots need whenever they need to sneak into a public area. Keep it up, Denny, you might end up in my Favorite Character List yet. Can’t say much on his subplot with Russell though; it’s fairly low-key and easily solved with just a whiff of the hand.
:star::star::star: OUT OF FIVE STARS



BONUS OBSERVATIONS


”OKIE DOKEY, DR. JONES, HOLD ONTO YOUR POTATOES!” The Indiana Jones reference is obvious, but I am legitimately surprised they went far to give Russell the exact same clothing Shortround wore in The Temple of Doom.

Shortround and I have a long, complicated history. Imagine being a little Asian girl who barely had any Asian role models to look up to. Shortround is…well…he’s…a product of the 80s which in itself is a product of 1930s pulp adventure which in itself was far more racist than the 80s which was also more racist than we are now. But I…I kind of like Shortround? People say he’s annoying, but I don’t see it. Yeah, he yaps like an energetic puppy, but Shortround is portrayed pretty positively for a possibly unfortunate stereotype. He’s brave, useful, and clever. He is sympathetically portrayed as Indy’s “adopted” son (which I like more than The Beef as his actual son—didn’t Indiana actually have a daughter?) and he’s the one who ultimately saves Indy after he’s been brainwashed (though as much as Shortround can be seen as stereotypical, he’s got nothing on the unfortunate implication of how the movie portrayed Indians.) I guess you can say it was “as good as I could get” at that time and age, but I still retain something of a soft spot for that kid even now. After all, you don’t forget your first Asian role model. …Okay, that was actually Trini from Power Rangers, but shut up.

BEST LINE: ”That’s the worst Starscream imitation ever!”

To be fair, Bee, you were waving your whole body around dramatically; Starscream did that a lot in Prime.
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Archive / Archive 2
If you ever want list of links to all the reviews/rants/analysis/time-wasters I wrote.

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:bulletblue:If you want to read my reviews for Rescue Bots Season One and Two, click here: neoyi.deviantart.com/journal/A…


PREVIOUS SEASON THREE REVIEWS

53. Land Before Prime
54. Big Game

55. Too Many Kades
56. Phantom of the Sea
57. Unfinished Business
58. No Place Like Dome
59. Bugs in the System
60. Switcheroo
61. Bot-Tastic Voyage
62. Quarry's Quarry
63. Did You See What I Thaw
64. The Attack of Humungado
65. All Bots Great and Small
66. Time After Time
67. Pirates Ahoy
68. Turning the Tide

:bulletred: As always, SPOILERS!




RESCUE BOTS, EPISODE 69: THE LAST OF MOROCCO
(Vanishing Grace)






”Friendship, young man, is precious. Never forget this.”

I want to make it perfectly clear that “The Last of Morocco” is not only one of the best season three episodes, but one of the best Rescue Bots has punched out. It is nothing less than short of perfection.  However, before I gush about the good (and there is plenty), I felt I need to get the bad out of the way first because the flaw is pretty dang bad.

After Jules Verne travels to the future (the current present) upon receiving Morocco’s note from that time period (time travel, man), the episode goes back and forth on what to do with the latter. Morocco is not the friend Jules remembered him as and with his continuous criminal record, the Bots, Burns family, and Jules eventually settle on taking Morocco into the far future where the technology there will keep him imprisoned for presumably forever. To ensure the plan will work, Cody suggest they use the Verne device to wipe any memory associated with his criminal past, restoring him to the man he was before he was consumed by power. This is something everyone agrees on. Everyone.

I have a problem with this.

Dr. Morocco is a horrible man; he’s detestable, greedy, and immoral. He has purposely caused environmental disasters that could potentially harm and/or kill thousands of people, have no quip stealing and manipulating to get whatever he wants, is utterly self-serving, has at one point overtaken Griffin Rock in an alternate timeline and ruled it with an iron fist, and has no issues murdering children. These are acts with no seemingly regret. Morocco deserves the severest of punishments. The episode actually goes along with that train of thought, rightfully incarcerating his old-timey ass with intent to keep him locked up forever. Heck, at one point Charlie and Cody considered leaving him without his youth machine and I honestly would have been fine with that. It’s not they’re holding a cure for a disease or anything; Morocco would legitimately perish through old age—the age he was suppose to be in. He deserves karmic justice. Incidentally, this also answers a question I always had: Would Morocco slowly age over time and die if he doesn’t use the Chamber of Youth? I had no idea if the show would have ever explained it given the gruesome results, but they did. What do ya know?

Buuuuuuut I have to draw the line with memory erasure. It’s one thing to keep him imprisoned, it’s another to wipe a portion of his memories without his consent. This wouldn’t be such an issue if saaaaay, it was accidental with no hope of reversal because then it’s something they have to deal with.  But the show has always done an amazing job with our heroes’ track records as do-gooders that having them pull this is uncharacteristic of them. It is morally unethical. Even if it is Morocco, you just don’t do this kind of thing. Neither the Burns or the Bots pull the trigger (which I guess kind of absolves them a bit, but they still agreed to this); the ending implies Jules did it which arguably makes it worse because from Morocco’s perspective, it’s his best friend who did it. And Jules is totally okay with this. This isn’t getting into the potential fridge logic if Morocco will get the urge to pull evil acts again, though I have a theory that might counter this (read below.) I’m sorry, I just find this to be a very questionable act.

With that in mind, “The Last of Morocco” is a beautiful episode about friendship.



The obvious parallel is the friendship between Cody/Frankie and Jules/Morocco, but it goes a lot deeper than what's on the surface. What I like about Cody and Frankie is how much they would sacrifice for each other. Frankie is specifically more scientific-minded than Cody, but the latter decides to take the extra math course so he can spend the summer in science camp with her. He cares about her more than whatever they’re going to do. Sometimes in life, you do things for the people you love even if you aren’t as enthusiastic. Jules Verne and Morocco had the opposite problem. It’s easy to blame Morocco for all this; his pursuit for power and selfishness is more than enough for Jules to cut ties with him (and I wouldn’t blame him, sometimes a friendship is too toxic to save), but notice how guilty and wistful Jules is. The episode actually goes out of its way to indicate their broken bond isn’t entirely Morocco’s fault. If Jules had been there for Morocco, would he had turned to a life of crime? Is it possible that Jules is Morocco’s conscience? I think that’s why Jules blames himself as much as Morocco denies any feelings. The scene between the two is utterly heartbreaking because you can tell Morocco is upset his friend left him.

I didn’t think “sympathy” and “Morocco” could occur in the same episode let alone the same sentence, but it did and it works.  Jules is never antagonized for his decisions and Morocco isn’t absolved of his crimes despite his inner feelings. The underlying message it presents and the careful crafting of its emotions mean I bought Jules and Morocco’s friendship. I believed in Morocco’s resentment and denial. And ultimately in spite of the immoral act, I bought the ending as the two walk side-by-side in future France. “The Last of Morocco’s” title seems to indicate this might be Morocco’s final hurrah. A part of me wishes that weren’t the case, even if it means the main characters have to deal with an involuntarily brainwashed Morocco as their ally or something. I mean, I really like Morocco a lot and I find him utterly fascinating (also, I find him attractive as hell), but if this is to be his last mark on the show, I’m glad it ended on a sweet note. It’s a surprising one for a man with little to redeem himself, but I think it works for a show like Rescue Bots.

The only reason why I think (note: hope) Morocco will return largely has to do with Jules’ familiarity with Heatwave. He already knew who the Bot is, so at some point the Rescue Bots or at least Heatwave will run into him. Where though is the question. If the future where he is with Morocco, then we might bump into the latter. But it could just be the former. The episode make numerous references to his books and given Jules have not written any of the books that have defined him, he’s obviously going to return to his time period at some point! There’s also Morocco’s pocket watch from “Time After Time.” Either the watch as a whole served as a symbolic foreshadowing of this episode (since it deals with Morocco, time as a concept, and a shard of Energon), this item could play a part in another episode. All of these linger with the idea that Jules and maybe Morocco will still be a factor in future episodes and with season four confirmed, the boundaries are limitless. Or it could all just be teasing for a future that never occurs onscreen.
:star::star::star::star: OUT OF FIVE STARS





BONUS OBSERVATIONS


ALL ABOARD THE NOPE TRAIN: Kade’s big “nope” to the latest time travel development is one of the funniest, genre savvy things I’ve seen in anything. He just straight up doesn’t even bother getting involved let alone ask questions on what the shit Jules Verne is doing here. He just sits this one out, but can you blame him? The family probably has a Guinness World Record somewhere for “Most Abused of Time In Record.”

THE GREATEST PUN EVER: I didn’t notice this until a tumblr post pointed it out, but Servo is the general Cybertronian term for hand. Servo the robo-dog has a variety of tools for the team. He is a handy toolbox.

I am sick with anger.

This makes me SO. ANGRY. because the pun is SO. DAMN. GOOD.

I also like the sound Servo makes. It’s not quite a bark as so much as a “yip”, but it gives him a distinctive sound that’s dog-like while reminding us he’s still an alien. Good choice!

VILLAINY LIES: If I remember waaaaaaay back when we first see the youth machine, Doc stated he stole the device. This episode shows Jules Verne gave it to him.

TAKING THE FAVORED SON: I find it amusing that Charlie only took Cody when they reunited with High Tide. Kade I get because he chose to stay behind due to all the time traveling nonsense, but why didn't Graham and Dani tag along with Charlie and Cody? Both of them clearly showed interest in today’s current weirdness.



____________________________________________________________________________________________

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Archive
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REQUESTS: No, I do not. Sorry.
  • Listening to: Various
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  • Playing: Nothing RIght Now
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:bulletblue:If you want to read my reviews for Rescue Bots Season One and Two, click here: neoyi.deviantart.com/journal/A…


PREVIOUS SEASON THREE REVIEWS

53. Land Before Prime
54. Big Game

55. Too Many Kades
56. Phantom of the Sea
57. Unfinished Business
58. No Place Like Dome
59. Bugs in the System
60. Switcheroo
61. Bot-Tastic Voyage
62. Quarry's Quarry
63. Did You See What I Thaw
64. The Attack of Humungado
65. All Bots Great and Small
66. Time After Time
67. Pirates Ahoy

:bulletred: As always, SPOILERS!




RESCUE BOTS, EPISODE 68: TURNING THE TIDE
(High Tide, you magnificent bastard, I read your BOOOOOOOOK!)





”In truth, High Tide has much to learn from the team as well.”

I love dogs; they’re my favorite animals. I was ecstatic when Noble briefly joined the crew back on "Rescue Dog" and I would not have minded at all if he was a permanent addition to the family, though I appreciated the route they went with instead. Adding new characters are either a cause for celebration or an invite to disaster and how they’re perceived and what they do can mean a world of difference. Bearing that in mind, I find Servo the robo-dog to be magnificently cheesy. Every time that dang thing semi-transforms and pops out a gizmo, I kind of purse my lips together. And he’s the one staying behind with the crew. I don’t know why this particularly pup rubs me the wrong way that Noble doesn’t. In comparison, maybe I just feel Servo is a little too…gimmicky? I feel weird using that term in a Transformers show. This is a franchise built on gimmicks. So why does Servo leave me with a dreaded feeling of Cousin Oliver Syndrome? As usual, I’ll wait and see how well he’s used for the duration of the show. Rescue Bots have always been more hit than miss, so the crafty canine still has a shot. I do like that Servo isn't just this awesome pet for Cody to coo over; Boulder spends a decent portion building an attachment to him, too. I like the idea of Servo being more than just "a bot and his dog" and Boulder definitely is the animal loving type.



There is much to celebrate with the introduction of High Tide. New robots are usually a plus in Transformers. It’s not just potential toys to pick up; I legitimately get excited to seeing more bots pop up, especially if their permanent members. High Tide doesn’t stay with the main crew, but he’s the first new bot in…well, ever! Evidently, the show must have gotten an increase in budget to create a new guy (and I know we’re getting more) and High Tide certainly leaves an impression. I’m just not sure the lesson was as smooth as it could have been.

“Turning the Tide” is a unique bully story. High Tide isn’t an asshole for no reason; it’s just in his nature to be rough with his crew to teach them vital techniques. This isn’t a case of some kid punching Cody for no reason or a bot coming out of nowhere and harassing Heatwave and crew. No, High Tide is a well-respected companion of Optimus and clearly knows what he is doing. His methods are blunt and hard to adjust to. I don’t know how military services work, but I assume soldiers deal with their leaders screaming at their faces because they need to built up a necessary mental defense to better serve out in the field, so the bully lesson is a strange one to attach it to.

But just for the sake of the plot, let’s go with it and see how it fairs. High Tide certainly doesn’t pull any punches, that’s for sure. He’s not going to baby anyone and I imagine that’s the case for a lot of military/boot camp/other related backgrounds. However, the episode makes it clear his constantly name calling and physical harassment are not conductive. Heatwave eventually has had enough of High Tide’s bullshit after a certain point and straight up tells him off like he should. No one should tolerant a bully. High Tide does realize at the end that what he did was not a good thing and that he needs to work on his attitude. It’s not just an anti-bullying message, but an episode about proper communication and teamwork through said communication. Optimus clearly sent High Tide not only to groom them for future rescue missions, but to undergo some bit of anger management from the Bots/Burns family. All well and good, buuuuut I felt the change of heart was a little too last minute.



Optimus tells Heatwave he has much to learn as High Tide does and I’m sitting here thinking, “Yeah, I guess?” This is probably why the tough drill sergeant act isn’t as convincing as I think it is to handle a bullying message. High Tide likely acts the way he does because it’s in his protocol. I’m going to assume this was even necessary during wartime (which I presume he served in or played a part.) There are moments where he goes off-limits on what is appropriate (if it wasn’t his gruffness, then it definitely was his disapproval of Blades leaving without permission to save a human), but if that’s the case, why should Heatwave go back and learn from him until he fixes his anger issues? The episode kind of compensates for it at the end when all High Tide cooperates; gives the Rescue Bots the gears they need; and lets them handle the majority of the rescuing, but the message was a veritable see-saw of “It worked” and “It Didn’t.”

My other problem is that after Heatwave is kicked off the ship, none of the other Rescue Bots attempt to join Heatwave. I feel like they should have out of friendship and loyalty. Teamwork and family has been the most important theme in Rescue Bots and for Chase, Blades, and Boulder to just stay put while Heatwave gets das boot is jarring. If anything, having everyone leave might have given High Tide some time to reflect on his actions, so his change of heart feels more natural.

This episode also begs the question of what High Tide’s job is if he’s from Cybertron. I mean, the robot navy, but…is there water in Cybertron? I swear there was at least one episode (probably from Transformers Prime, I can’t remember) where water was confirm to not be a thing that exists in that planet. Then again, Arcee did mention an oil bath, so maybe oil = water in Cybertron? High Tide does state Earth water is weird to him. Or again, am I just not suppose to think about this too much? Speaking of oil, that spill probably messed with the ocean badly. Oh God, I can’t imagine the damage this will have on the environment.
:star::star::star: AND A HALF OUT OF FIVE STARS



BONUS OBSERVATIONS


CAMERA SPLATTER: Did water splatter all over the “camera” in the beginning of the episode? That’s pretty neat.

BUT APPARENTLY NOT ENOUGH BUDGET… to show High Tide transforming. They did that whole “Bot-is-covered-in-a-school-of-fish-while-they-transform” gimmick when he turns into his alt mode.

BEST LINE: ”Oh, the smoke alarm! Meatloaf must be ready! Dinner!”

Dani, that is an altogether frightening sentence.

WORST LINE: "Rescue Bots, surf to the rescue!”

Eh, not one of your best, Heatwave.



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Archive
If you ever want a list of links to all the reviews/rants/analysis/time-wasters I wrote.

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REQUESTS: No, I do not. Sorry.
  • Listening to: Cardcaptor Sakura OSTs
  • Reading: How NOT to Write a Novel
  • Watching: Cardcaptor Sakura
  • Playing: Nothing RIght Now
  • Eating: Nothing Right Now
  • Drinking: Nothing Right Now
So apparently there is a limit to how much I can add in a given journal (60KB), so baring that in mind, I've decided to do some rearranging. The first Archive will be what it is: an archive of all my previous articles I've written. This one - Archive 2 - will host my current stuff, so all the current Transformers show and anything new I've written as of 2015 goes here. So on the off chance someone is interested in my stuff, it's all stored in these two archives. Whew. Some of these links go to the same page because I sometimes do multiple reviews under one entry.

I will put this specific journal link at the bottom of future journals. Also included are my Toonzone reviews, Tumblr ramblings, and any other outside stuff I've done beyond DA. Please tell me if any of the links aren't working for whatever reason.


PAST ARCHIVE
Archive 1

:bulletred: SPOILER WARNING: A lot of these reviews will spoil, so click with caution.



:bulletgreen:DEVIANTART JOURNAL ARTICLES/REVIEWS:bulletgreen:


THE REVIEWS

All the reviews I did in DeviantART.

RESCUE BOTS/ROBOTS IN DISGUISE (2015) REVIEWS

These are all my reviews of Transformers: Robots in Disguise and Transformers Rescue Bots. They are at the top because they're currently ongoing and I assume most of the peeps watching me are into this franchise. I clearly don't have a life.

ROBOTS IN DISGUISE: SEASON ONE (2015) - ONGOING
1+2. Pilot - Talking Points
3. Trust Exercises
4. More than Meets the Eye
5. W.W.O.D
6. As the Kospego Commands
7. Collect 'Em All


RESCUE BOTS: SEASON ONE (COMPLETE)
1. "Family of Heroes"/2. "Under Pressure" (Premiere First Impressions)
3. "Hotshots"
4. "Flobsters On Parade"
5. "The Alien Invasion of Griffin Rock"
6. "Walk On The Wild Side"
7. "Cody On Patrol"
8. "Four Bots and A Baby"
9. "Christmas In July"
10. "Deep Trouble"
11. "Return of the Dinobot"
12. "The Other Doctor"
13. "The Reign of Morocco"

14. "Small Blessings"
15. "The Griffin Rock Triangle"

16. "Rules and Regulation"
17. "The Lost Bell"

18. "Bumblebee to the Rescue"
19. "You've been Squilshed"
20. "Countdown"

21. "The Haunting of Griffin Rock"
22. "Little White Lies"

23. "Shake Up"
24. "Rescue Boy"

25. "It's A Bot Time"
26. "Bot to the Future"


RESCUE BOTS: SEASON TWO (COMPLETE)
27. "Road Trip"
28. "Sky Forest"

29. "One For the Ages"
30. "Tip of the Iceberg"
31. "A Virtual Disaster"
31. "A Virtual Disaster" (April Fool's edition)
32. "Spellbound"
33. "Prescott's Bots"
34. "Blame the Gremlins"
35. "Feed the Beast"
36. What Lies Below
37. What Rises Above
38. Space Bots
39. The Island of Misfit Tech
40. The Vigilant Town
41. Buddy System
42. In Search of the Griffin's Nest
43. Bots and Robbers
44. Rescue Dog
45. Changes
46. The Riders of Midwinter
47. Movers and Shakers
48. Chief Woodrow
49. Odd Bot Out

50. The Griffin Rock Express
51. Double Villainy
52. Rise of the Heroes


RESCUE BOTS: SEASON THREE (ONGOING)
53. Land Before Prime
54. Big Game

55. Too Many Kades
56. Phantom of the Sea
57. Unfinished Business
58. No Place Like Dome
59. Bugs In The System
60. Switcheroo
61. Bot-Tastic Voyage
62. Quarry's Quarry
63. Did You See What I Thaw
64. The Attack of Humungado
65. All Bots Great and Small
66. Time After Time
67. Pirates Ahoy
68. Turning the Tides
69. The Last of Morocco
70. The New Recruits
71. Rescue Bots Academy


OTHER REVIEWS

These are reviews I did in DA that aren't thorough analysis (read: bitch and rant) and/or recaps of each episode of specific TV shows. Don't stare at them for too long, the snark may burn your eyes.

2015:
The Big O
Captain America: The Winter Soldier
Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs 2
Daft Punk's Electroma
The Disaster Artist
Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children Complete
Guardians of the Galaxy
Hotel Translyvania
The LEGO Movie
The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou
The Longest Journey/Dreamfall: TLJ

Monkeybone
Monument Valley
Persona 3: FES
The Rocketeer
Showgirls
Sister Claire
Sky Dolls
Super Mario 3D World/Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker
Tinkerbell: The Pirate Fairy
Transistor
Wakfu: Season 2 (Talking Points)



ARTICLES, RANTS, AND NON-REVIEWS

What it says. The DA articles that aren't reviews.

Transformers: Robots in Disguise (2015): So Optimus...
Fresh off the Boat: And Now, A Lengthy Rant About Asian Representation
Power Rangers RPM is Something, Alright...



:bulletblue:TOONZONE ARTICLES:bulletblue:

These are all the articles I wrote for Toonzone.


REVIEWS


Tales from Earthsea: Patronizing Boredom in Fantasy Form
Space Dandy Aloha Oe Edition Goes With the Flow, Baby
Transformers: Robots in Disguise Has a Lot of Spark




:bulletyellow:TUMBLR NONSENSES:bulletyellow:

More stupid shit outside of DA, this time in Tumblr: Electric Bugaloo!

CARDCAPTOR SAKURA EPISODE-BY-EPISODE MINI-REVIEWS
Episodes 1-10
Episodes 11 -20
Episodes 21-30
  • Listening to: Cardcaptor Sakura OSTs
  • Reading: How NOT to Write a Novel
  • Watching: Cardcaptor Sakura
  • Playing: Nothing RIght Now
  • Eating: Nothing Right Now
  • Drinking: Nothing Right Now
:bulletblue:If you want to read my reviews for previous Transformers shows, click here: neoyi.deviantart.com/journal/A…

PREVIOUS SEASON ONE REVIEWS:
1+2. Pilot
3. Trust Exercises


:bulletred: As always, SPOILERS!




ROBOTS IN DISGUISE EPISODE 4: MORE THAN MEETS THE EYE
(I think we need to put a limit on how many times this catchphrase should be used.)




”Gosh, I’d love to get out in the field…in a strictly non-confrontational capacity, of course.”

A major theme in Transformers Animated is the subversion of your expected role. Optimus Prime and his band of misfits stood out because they didn’t define what the greater Autobot machine philosophized. They were shunned for it, but it worked out in the end because they dare to individualize themselves away from the system. Strongarm states all mini-cons must stick to their chosen role, which makes me wonder if they have less privileges than standard Bots.

Robots in Disguise seems to be going down a similar road with Bumblebee’s team, though less on a societal structure (Grimlock might be an exception since he’s a Decepticon amongst Autobots and that alone could have potential for conflict) and more on a bunch of characters that have so little in common forced to work in a foreign world. Things have to change, including attitudes. “Trust Exercises” explored this through Sideswipe and Strongarm's constant tension with each other, especially the latter who had to learn to trust a former delinquent while said delinquent attempts to discard his rebellious past.

Now it’s Fixit’s turn. Bee’s right, he is a useful member of the team even if he’s relegated to background. Fixit is the Smart Guy; he has inside information on all the Cons they have to catch and provides the weapons and tools necessary to perform their duties. While Fixit frequently hides behind things and people when danger strikes, he’s not quite a milquetoast. There’s an eagerness to him; a spark so to speak. He's both legitimately scared and excited to partake on a covert mission, but “More than Meets the Eye” reveals it may be more than he can chew. I like that Bee didn’t hesitate with his decisions. There’s no “Yeah, Fixit, stay here in the junkyard where you’ll be safe because you can’t do shit”; he genuinely picked up on Fixit’s desire and asked him to go undercover. It might be better in the long run. The more he knows about their line of work, the better his chance of survival. Fixit ain't bad in physical combat either.

It’s all the more hilarious when the opposite happens to the powerhouse Grimlock because you really can’t do much as a giant, robotic dinosaur running around Earth without someone being suspicious. If this took place in Hollywood, then it’d be easy. ;D  This leaves Grimlock to boost Russell’s spirits, but it doesn’t really carry the subplot much.  All this attention to Grimlock’s alt mode leaves me wondering if the show will deal with it in the future? But how do you just get rid of a Dinobot’s Dino-mode?



Chop Shop is genuinely terrifying in appearance, a combiner who looks like the lovechild of Airachnid and Knock Out. His voice isn’t, but I don’t want to be in a room with five robot spiders. I can’t even handle real spiders! And oh wow, I have no idea what to make of or process Spider-Bot attaching Fixit to his arm. That looks kind of perverse, yo. One of his spiders snuck off the battlefield while the rest of him is back in stasis at the end, so there’s a lingering hint that he’ll be back for more. It looks like Bee’s team is going to build up a possible rogue’s gallery.



What is this kid’s deal? I’m going to guess Russell lived in a noisier or bigger neighborhood when he was with his mother, hence why he thinks living in a junkyard in the middle of nowhere is a downgrade. Well, yeah, it is, but what is up with this kid? He wants to go to an amusement park in Crown City, so why doesn’t he just go? The second episode established the city is only a bridge away. Why can’t he ask his father to take him there? Why doesn’t Denny drive his kid to the city? He can’t be that dense to see his only son is bored off his skull that he can’t indulge him for one day. What is preventing the man from taking Russell to Crown City? Is he banned there? Does he have bad history? This is the second time Russell laments because he can't go to Crown City despite being pals with robots that turn into vehicles that logically could take him there. It is literally a bridge away.

Shortly after he writes his emotionally draining poetry about the futilely of life, Russell runs into a group of kids against his better wishes. All of them are friendly and inviting, but being the moody little jerk that he is, Russell joins in the game and immediately leaves after like two seconds of failure. Like he straight up gives up without even trying. And he stays in his little corner despite constant support from one particular child, Hank (even if she’s a bit forceful.) Look, I get it, no one should make anyone do what they don’t want to do, but that’s not what the lesson is suppose to be about. It’s about Russell’s insecurity and fear that he’ll never be good enough. But the lesson feels oddly detached from his character arc. I mean, he doesn’t seem to have any social issues or anxiety - he easily bonds with the robots even if they aren't from around here. It's like he's deliberately sabotaging himself so he can be miserable on purpose. He's a new kid in a new neighborhood that he isn't used to, a decision likely out of his hands. That's enough to dour anyone's mood, but there hasn't been a convincing conflict that justifies his loner shtick. Usually when I dislike kid characters, it’s because they’re annoying little sugar twats that can’t sit still, doesn’t shut up, and often gets into trouble. I’ve never disliked one for being a sourpuss! I’m not asking for a deep, ultra-dramatic life story behind Russell’s woes, but I hope there’s more to it than simple boredom lest his misery spread like malaria. Seriously, kid, lighten up.  

I am grateful the writers did not go the bullying root with the other kids. It’s far too easy to set them up as little assholes for no reason other than to antagonize Russell and give him a conflict(though I’m tempt to say they should have gone this route just so Russell has a better reason for being such a Strong Sad), but they opt instead to be friendly and open. This includes adding Hank AKA Henrietta to their team with absolutely no scrutiny directed to her gender. I even like that she doesn’t look 100% tomboy, settling for a different character design that’s not cliché. Though I could have done without the sexist gender name joking (ha ha, the boy has a girl name, let’s all make fun of him, lol.) Hank’s peculiar interests and go-to attitude is exciting and I hope she’ll not only be a reoccurring character, but someone who’ll get in on the robots’ secret. She’s certainly better than Russell right now!
:star::star::star: AND A HALF OUT OF FIVE STARS




BONUS OBSERVATIONS


AND A SIDE OF BUTTER WITH THAT: First the flobsters, now Bisk? When did Transformers get into lobsters all of a sudden?



I mean, I’m not really complaining, I think this guy is hilarious.

BEST LINE: ”You think I don’t know how to beat this attack, it’s just up, up, left, down, claw, claw!”
Less the dialogue itself (although it sounds like this was partially inspired by the Konami Code), but the way Khary Paxton nails the kookiness.

RUNNER-UP: ”Field work is fun, let’s find more humans we can fool!”

Simmer down there, Fixit.

SO BAD, BUT GOOD LINE: ”Grassterpiece.”

It’s so bad, but it’s good, but it’s so bad, but it’s good...

So is this mustached man going to be a reoccurring running gag? I want him to be like the guy who can’t get his ice cream from Lilo and Stitch where something bad always happens to his precious grass.


____________________________________________________________________________________________

:heart: STUPID FANCOMICS:heart:


Discovery (A Transformers Animated Fancomic): Read the entire thing here. Placed there for archival purpose. Recently cancelled.

:heart: OTHER STUFF:heart:


Archive / Archive 2
If you ever want list of links to all the reviews/rants/analysis/time-wasters I wrote.

My Twitter: Follow me ramble in 100+ words or less here.

My Tumblr: Lots of pretty pictures I like.
  • Listening to: Cardcaptor Sakura OSTs
  • Reading: How NOT to Write a Novel
  • Watching: Cardcaptor Sakura
  • Playing: Nothing RIght Now
  • Eating: Nothing Right Now
  • Drinking: Nothing Right Now
:bulletblue:If you want to read my reviews for previous Transformers shows, click here: neoyi.deviantart.com/journal/A…




:bulletred: As always, SPOILERS!




ROBOTS IN DISGUISE: TRUST EXERCISES


(“You’re a meanie.”
“No, you’re the meanie!”
“I’m not the meanie, you are.”
“No, you are!”)





“That first step we’ve been talking in the woods? I think it’s being taking.”

It is a truth universally acclaimed that a team in shambles is in need of a good trust exercise. As the gang’s leader, Bumblebee logically takes the next step and introduces the idea of companionship and teamwork to solidify their goal to catch all the renegade Cons. Grimlock and Bee get along swimmingly, but problem child Sideswipe and by-the-book Strongarm needs a teeny bit of motivation. The result is typical: two opposite personalities bounce off each other, but somewhere down the line they have to work together. When Steeljaw has Strongarm captured, it’s up to Sideswipe to step in (along with Russell’s help) that eventually leads to the two getting a better understanding of each other. What I really like is that they didn’t go the standard route of putting aside their differences to team up against Steeljaw. Sideswipe distracts Steeljaw long enough for Strongarm to escape and kick the shit out of Steeljaw. It’s improvisation, one that Strongarm is grateful enough to thank, but not necessarily enough to buy Sideswipe’s fully come clean. It’s a small, almost unassuming “thanks”, but it carries bigger meaning coming from Strongarm. Baby steps, you know?

Sideswipe doesn’t want to trust; he wants respect. Bumblebee sees good in the kid and Grimlock simplistic one-note mind means Sideswipe is likely not as concerned on what the Dinobot thinks, but Strongarm deliberately judges him based on his delinquent act and it gets in his craw. Seeing as he wants to be treated as an equal only proves Bee’s assessment of him is right and he really is a good guy at heart (this goes without saying, he’s a rebel, not a genocidal maniac.)

If I felt Sideswipe and Strongarm’s interaction was largely standard, Grimlock’s interaction with Bee is not. When I think about The Big Guy, two archetypes bring to mind: they’re either dumb, aggressive lunkheads who want to punch everything or kind, gentle giants who just happen to be the strongest member of the team. Grimlock is in the first category. Grimlock is hilarious because his only motivation is to fight and fight some more, usually to the detriment of the other team members. In a surprising twist, this so-called Decepticon easily obeys Bumblebee and gets along fabulously without struggle. He’s not friendly per say and his lust for battle sounds like it could bite him in his metal ass if he doesn’t take it down a notch, but he shows empathy whenever he messes up and is just so dark giddy about this whole “catch the Con” quest. I theorize he acts this way because it is preferable to prison and he’s in a unique position where he can literally get into scuffles; something he is totally okay with doing because it means beating the shit out of Cons.


Alright, who's shipping them? Raise those hands, folks.


This complication means Grimlock is more of a wild card than Sideswipe. While the latter genuinely wants to do good, Grimlock’s morals a bit more loose. He has a good chance of screwing over the team and that’s what makes him fascinating. ‘Sides, I also really like his team spirit energy even if it benefits only him. It’s charming and funny to boot. I’m really liking Grimlock and I usually don’t cater much to The Big Guy characters.

While I like Fixit’s nerdy, neurotic behavior, I’m glad the creators did not dip fully into the stereotype pool and kept him as a socially awkward, geeky misfit. He snarks, giving him an edge that stands out from his unassuming form. Wouldn’t it be something if his biggest weapon isn’t his mechanical skills, but his mouth?

Other little things of note is the scene where Bumblebee admires Earth’s ocean. Aww, he really misses the place, didn’t he? You better call Raf, buddy! Meanwhile, Russell proves he’s not a useless human fleshling, but he still doesn’t have a striking personality, so meh.

Steeljaw is an interesting foe so far. He claims he wants to start anew on Earth and desires peace for him and any other prisoners who feel the way, but it’s clear the guy is bullshitting. His charisma, ability to lie at the drop of a hat, and a voice that glides on butter (brrr) means he has “manipulative bastard” in big neon signs slapped to his back. But is it so bad I want his speech to have some grain of truth? Robots in Disguise is operating under the belief that the Cons = bad guys. Nevermind the “No, DUH” factor and hear me out for a sec. The end of the war in Prime meant it fell heavily to the Autobots’ side and I suppose over time, word of mouth and propaganda got out that the Decepticons are the “villains.” Strongarm accuses Steeljaw of such and she’d be young enough to live in a world with that kind of belief. The meta answer is that it’s an all-age toy-driven show, so at its worst, it’ll stick with black and white morality as its central conflict between factions. But Transformers cartoons has dabbled with a bit of gray before (not to mention the ongoing comic series really goes out of its way to analyze both factions’ role after the war ended.) Animated’s Decepticons are rotten to the core, but the greater Autobot government gives incentive that perhaps the former group may be more justified in their reasoning than we think. Prime went out of their way to humanize and establish personal backstories and arcs for several Cons in an attempt to sympathize with their conflicts, even if we may not support what they do.

Robots in Disguise has a chance to go deeper. I don’t expect a philosophical thesis on the ethnics of morality and what is “good” and “evil” from a show primarily aimed for children (’sides, we got MTMTE for that ;D); I’m just saying there’s a good opportunity here to give Steeljaw depth and prove his words carry a seed of truth. After all, is he not a wolf, a creature known for its nobility?



...

...

Alright, I’ll admit it; he does look hot…for having an animal face. I’ve seen some confusion on the Cons obtaining beast modes since that seems to be a Predacon thing in Prime. I can’t remember off the top of my head, but is it really a plot hole? I assume the “beast” in the “Beast Hunter” title during Prime’s third season was more of a catch-all term than anything specific. The Predacons seem equivalent to dinosaurs in Cybertron, give or take a dragon. Airachnid is also a spider (well, half a spider anyway) which by definition counts as an animal form. So maybe it’s just a thing on Cybertron that Robots in Disguise decided to exploit. Maybe it’s a new craze that happened in between Prime and the present. Or maybe I’m thinking too much out of this.
:star::star::star::star: AND A HALF OUT OF FIVE STARS



BONUS OBSERVATIONS


CROWN CITY …is also the name of a city in PBS’ Arthur. It literally only shows up in like one episode, but every time I heard the name, that’s all I think about.

TIPSY HIGH: The boat Bee and Grimlock takes barely hold them in. Should have considered the Burns’ Darby Eva; that thing someone carries four bots each weighing at least 3000lbs.

"I AM THE TERROR THAT FLAPS IN THE NIGHT... I AM THE WEIRDO THAT SITS NEXT TO YOU ON THE BUS! I AM..."



GRIMBEE!

BEST LINE: ”I don’t trust him, he’s too cool.”

Pfft. Well, sometimes the baddies tend to be several shades more awesome than the heroes. His ”It was a dark and stormy night” line is probably a good runner-up because the narrative treats it like the cliché line that it is.



____________________________________________________________________________________________

:heart: STUPID FANCOMICS:heart:


Discovery (A Transformers Animated Fancomic): Read the entire thing here. Placed there for archival purpose. Recently cancelled.

:heart: OTHER STUFF:heart:


Archive
If you ever want a list of links to all the reviews/rants/analysis/time-wasters I wrote.

My Twitter: Follow me ramble in 100+ words or less here.

My Tumblr: Lots of pretty pictures I like.

REQUESTS: No, I do not. Sorry.
  • Listening to: Cardcaptor Sakura OSTs
  • Reading: How NOT to Write a Novel
  • Watching: Cardcaptor Sakura
  • Playing: Ori and the Blind Forest/Box Boy
  • Eating: Curry and Rice
  • Drinking: Pepsi
:bulletblue:If you want to read my reviews for Rescue Bots Season One and Two, click here: neoyi.deviantart.com/journal/A…


PREVIOUS SEASON THREE REVIEWS

53. Land Before Prime
54. Big Game

55. Too Many Kades
56. Phantom of the Sea
57. Unfinished Business
58. No Place Like Dome
59. Bugs in the System
60. Switcheroo
61. Bot-Tastic Voyage
62. Quarry's Quarry
63. Did You See What I Thaw
64. The Attack of Humungado
65. All Bots Great and Small
66. Time After Time

:bulletred: As always, SPOILERS!









”Whatever Bertha did or didn’t do, it doesn’t change who you are.”

As three seasons of Rescue Bots roll by, the Burns and Bots have witnessed some pretty crazy stuff. Among others, these include: robot dinosaurs, fake volcanoes that spew real lava, flying lobsters, noisy news reporters and dumbass mayors, time travels, a hidden dinosaur society, a caveman, Charlie’s ambitiously worrisome little brother, GLaDOS, a 19th century megalomaniac, weather machines that conjure up acts of GOD, lost temples, shrink rays, freakin’ apocalyptic prevention centers, a rainforest construction, space crystals, a monstrous red fire truck that consumes so much gas it’ll deplete the globe’s oil reserves in the next five years, and movie holograms that convert films into solid objects. Yet Mayor Luskey’s denouncement is the most unrealistic thing I’ve ever seen from this show.

Luskey disbands the Burns crew on account of a pirate ancestor, fearful Bertha's representation will taint Griffin Rock, not that it has a lot going for it outside of a body count. I mean, I get the lesson: what our ancestors did in our past doesn’t mean this is how we’re going to act now. Actually, the subject of the past and history is a loaded question. I personally feel we cannot and should not erase the bad—oftentimes inhumanely horrendous—deeds from our collective consciences. To do so would be to deny it ever happened and if we deny, how can we, as human beings, better ourselves? Circumstances depends on what our ancestors did in the past though and piracy that occurred 400+ years is probably not one of them, especially in light of Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean. You’d think the Mayor would milk it otherwise up until Disney slams a lawsuit on them.

Any who, the point I’m trying to make is, for this specific case, the amount of deprive and anger over the Burns’ pirate blood is nothing short of an overreaction. We're talking Springfield levels of stupidity. I largely think there is a bit of fridge brilliance involved. The kind of one-sided argument against the Burns is too simplistic for my boring adult mind, but for its target audience, it’s logical reasoning to them than. Why though? Why can I accept all the fancy adventures our heroes get into without scrutiny? I can accept the Rescue Bots shrinking themselves to go inside Kade’s body or Cody growing 10 years older, but why can I not accept this? Personally, it’s because I think the idea is too mundane. This is something I can easily see happening in real life, perhaps not as exaggerated. TThe kooky sci-fi mess the Rescue Bots and Burns get into is over-the-top and not based on any grasp of reality that it’s easy to take it for what it is. The show knows this is impossible, but it’s fiction, so they embrace it. I might have been fine if it was just Luskey pointing fingers since he’s got the brain only slightly more advanced than a paramecium (though Huxley’s the one who discovered and pointed fingers first), but when the whole town is convinced is when I lost my suspension of disbelief.  

I think it was kind of a cheat for Bertha Burns to give up her life of piracy to settle down. Isn’t the whole point that regardless of what she does shouldn’t ultimately affect the current Burns? Then again, I guess they had to since her husband finds Griffin Rock and the Burns family line has to start somewhere! Still, I love that it’s a woman who’s the pirate and that she looks like Dani. This is what prompts her into the spotlight even if it’s something I think works as an ensemble piece with the whole family than individually focusing on one member.

The treasure hunt feels disconnected to the Burns family accusation plot. It has ties because it’s Bertha’s gold and Dani specifically wants to find it to clear the family name, but I think the quest could have worked as a separate thing. I gotta hand it to Woodrow though, there’s something admirable about not going off into a flying panic every time you mess up. His line of thinking is to just keep going and see what happens. Given he’s survived this long, he must be doing something right. Or at the least, he possesses Nathan Drake levels of luck. What’s it like to feel like that, Woodrow? I, a carrier of anxiety, would like to know.

I also appreciated that there’s actual pirate booty instead of some lame, “You found the greatest treasure of all: Friendship.” Blades tagging along willingly instead of cowering for once is adorable. He just can’t resist the pirate lingo, that cute little piehole. Oh, and how the ending more or less petered out to, “Money can fix everything!” Granted, it’s for a good cause, but still.
:star::star: AND A HALF OUT OF FIVE STARS


BONUS OBSERVATIONS


DISCO DAN: Dani plans to blackmail Huxley with a clip of him singing at last year’s Lobsterfest unless they tell him where he got the pirate info from. What I don’t get is how? If they have the clip, wouldn’t it logically end up on the internet already? Okay, say it was police footage privately stored…why? This also took placed in a festival and he’s locally known in Griffin Rock, somebody already uploaded this on YouTube.

PIRATE LEGENDS: Graham mentioned Bertha’s pirate days were mere legends which is also made me tilt my head. Everyone prior reacted like this was big news that they heard for the first time instead of a myth that was ultimately confirmed. *shrugs*

BEST LINE: ”My timbers just unshivered.”

Sometimes I wonder if Blades even realizes the things he says, but then I remember this is Blades; he totally knows what he’s saying with full implication.



But that's a damn good sand castle.


____________________________________________________________________________________________

:heart: STUPID FANCOMICS:heart:


Discovery (A Transformers Animated Fancomic): Read the entire thing here. Placed there for archival purpose. Recently cancelled.

:heart: OTHER STUFF:heart:


Archive
If you ever want a list of links to all the reviews/rants/analysis/time-wasters I wrote.

My Twitter: Follow me ramble in 100+ words or less here.

My Tumblr: Lots of pretty pictures I like.

REQUESTS: No, I do not. Sorry.
  • Listening to: Ori and the Blind Forest OST
  • Reading: Nausicca of the Valley of the Wind/Gamespite 3
  • Watching: Cardcaptor Sakura
  • Playing: Ori and the Blind Forest/Box Boy
  • Eating: Kaibi and Rice
  • Drinking: Water
:bulletblue:If you want to read my reviews for Rescue Bots Season One and Two, click here: neoyi.deviantart.com/journal/A…


PREVIOUS SEASON THREE REVIEWS

53. Land Before Prime
54. Big Game

55. Too Many Kades
56. Phantom of the Sea
57. Unfinished Business
58. No Place Like Dome
59. Bugs in the System
60. Switcheroo
61. Bot-Tastic Voyage
62. Quarry's Quarry
63. Did You See What I Thaw
64. The Attack of Humungado
65. All Bots Great and Small

:bulletred: As always, SPOILERS!




RESCUE BOTS, EPISODE 66: TIME AFTER TIME
(If you're lost you can look - and you will find me
Time after time
If you fall I will catch you - I'll be waiting
Time after time
)




”You kids grow up too fast. Sometimes I want to go back in time and keep you little forever.”

When it comes to time loop plots, I think the crazier it drives the main character, the better. My personal template for time loop episodes is Xena’s “Been There, Done That.” When Xena is stuck repeating the same day, she drives herself crazy trying to figure out the cause of it all. It reaches a head around the last major act when Xena wakes up kicking and screaming after she assumed she got everything down pat. She goes ballistic.

Such chaotic behavior is unfortunately not prominent in “Time After Time”, though it’s not in Cody’s nature to throw a temper tantrum. Still, the plot is near as entertaining as I was hoping it would. For one, the episode only loops back a day a mere three times; the first and second essentially the first and second act of the episode. It’s a slow paced episode and the tension is less remarkable, though I appreciate the clever use of semi-red herring by letting the audience assume the clock tower is the cause of the time loop. I say “semi” because the clock tower does play a part, triggering the pocket watch so only Cody realizes he’s traveling back in time“Time After Time” is boldly clear on the pocket watch’s importance, but their effort to mix a familiar twist is admirable.

What I don’t get is the mixed reactions from the Burns family when Cody tells them he traveled through time. Cody traveled back in time twice, one of which involves the entire Burns siblings and another that brought back a needlessly giant elephantine sized truck. And the Burns for some reason remain skeptical? Seriously? Frankie believes because she traveled back to 1939 with Cody, though she disappointingly doesn’t point this out. None of these really harm the episode or anything, but Rescue Bots generally has been good with its continuity that to do something contradicting is a bit of a head scratcher.

Otherwise, it's another standard Rescue Bots episode...or it would be except the ending happened.



Awww yeah! Now we’re talking! Since Cody nabbed this from Barney, it’s easy to theorize he took it out when handling personal items before Morocco was jailed. Knowing Barney though, it’s just as likely Morocco planted the damn watch right in front of him knowing Cody would swipe it…somehow. I kind of want to lean with the first because the latter would require a bit of foresight that I’m not sure even Morocco would possess, but any foreshadowing of Morocco means something big is going to happen soon.

“Time After Time’s” does get a point for Charlie’s lament. Cody declines his father’s invitation to take him to school which hits Charlie with a locomotive-sized realization that his youngest is growing up. Charlie handles it with grace (I mean, he does have three adult children), but I can’t imagine how hard it is no matter how many kids you have to see them grow up and adjust on their own. Their moments are short, but I think it accumulates a lot of Cody’s growth in the show. He’s proven his reliability and capability as a future first responder and it’s something Charlie encourages to its fullest. Charlie may wish for a time when he can still cuddle Cody, but he’s sensible enough to give Cody space when he needs it. Cody’s gonna need it; puberty is not kind.
:star::star::star: OUT OF FIVE STARS


BONUS OBSERVATIONS


DON’T CRY OVER SPILLED COFFEE:



What is up with that coffee spill? Somehow Dani overfilling the cup managed to split the stream into four cardinal directions with perfect 90 degree angels. Does gravity shift differently in Griffin Rock? Did the moon decide to troll with the Burns family and moved the liquid around in such a direction hoping they would figure out something is wrong despite this being the least weird shit in Griffin Rock?

SQUIRREL, VOICED BY ABU APPARENTLY: Because that’s what the squirrel sounds like even though actual squirrels do not sound like that at all. It does sound strikingly like Abu and I know Frank Welker specifically voiced the monkey. And we all know who Frank Welker is known for in the Transformers fandom. There’s nothing in the credits, but I wouldn’t be surprised if they brought him over to record a few animal noises (something he's also pretty damn good at.)

KITTEN TALKS: Boulder lightly reprimanding Mr. Pettypaws is right up there with Heatwave and the baby and Blades hugging Bee as the cutest darn thing in the entire show.




____________________________________________________________________________________________

:heart: STUPID FANCOMICS:heart:


Discovery (A Transformers Animated Fancomic): Read the entire thing here. Placed there for archival purpose. Recently cancelled.

:heart: OTHER STUFF:heart:


Archive
If you ever want a list of links to all the reviews/rants/analysis/time-wasters I wrote.

My Twitter: Follow me ramble in 100+ words or less here.

My Tumblr: Lots of pretty pictures I like.

REQUESTS: No, I do not. Sorry.
  • Listening to: Ori and the Blind Forest OST
  • Reading: Nausicca of the Valley of the Wind
  • Watching: Cardcaptor Sakura
  • Playing: Donkey Kong '94
  • Eating: Soup and Rice
  • Drinking: Pepsi
:bulletblue:If you want to read my reviews for Rescue Bots Season One and Two, click here: neoyi.deviantart.com/journal/A…


PREVIOUS SEASON THREE REVIEWS

53. Land Before Prime
54. Big Game

55. Too Many Kades
56. Phantom of the Sea
57. Unfinished Business
58. No Place Like Dome
59. Bugs in the System
60. Switcheroo
61. Bot-Tastic Voyage
62. Quarry's Quarry
63. Did You See What I Thaw
64. The Attack of Humungado

:bulletred: As always, SPOILERS!



ROBOTS IN DISGUISE (2015) TALKING POINTS




I figure with a new Transformers show now officially out in the US, I can arrange a proper reintroduction to anyone who has recently started watching me. For those of you who are new to my blog, hi, I’m Neo Yi. I write individual episodes of recent Transformers shows because I clearly don’t have better things to do. I wrote a bunch for Transformers Animated, Prime, and Rescue Bots, the latter ongoing because the show is ongoing. You can find the full list here. I hope they’re endlessly amusing for you as I get a kick out of writing them.

FYI, I will be reviewing individual episodes of Transformers: Robots in Disguise that are currently airing right now. I am going to write reviews based on the US airdates, mostly to give me breathing space. Having to review the eight or so episodes that came out in the Australia would only drive me crazy. However, I am not going to write a review for the first two episodes (the pilot) because I recently wrote a Toonzone review for it and I am going to pimp it as much as I can. Please check it out here if anyone is curious on how I feel for the show.

That said, some bonus observations from the first two episodes that I didn’t already write in my review (so if you feel I missed something, I might have already said it on that article.)

*Out of the five main bots, Grimlock’s the one who surprised me the most in terms of likability. Generally, I am disinterested in The Big Guy character archetype. I figured at best he’d be one of the last of the main five I’d be getting a toy of, but his “I want to fight!” attitude and enthusiasm ended up infectious enough for me to buy his toy a couple days after I watched the episode. A good portion of this is due to Khary Payton’s excellent voice work; nailing the blunt attitude with a sense of good, wholehearted fun. Behind Strongarm, I think this guy has the best shot of being my favorite character.

*For that matter, I thought Fixit’s speech impediment would get really old (though it could the further I watch), but it was largely harmless. It doesn’t endear me to it or anything, but I’m totally cool with it.

*My review didn’t emphasize just how much I utterly, utterly ADORE Underbite. He’s so over-the-top and beyond-the-impossible hammy as fuck. It’s the most amazing, glorious thing ever. His ”…CUZ I ATE IT!” line is way funnier to me than I ever imagined it’d be. I love him, I love him so much. Also, his little tail wags when he’s giddy is the cutest shit ever.

*I appreciate Bumblebee’s sympathy towards Sideswipe because he understands; he’s been there. He’s gone down that road before and even if he wasn’t quite as rambunctious as Sideswipe (at least what I saw in Prime anyway), Bee still had to deal with another young upshot: Smokescreen. He understands, yo. He understands, yo. Frankly, I think just hanging around Smokescreen gave Bee the immense patience needed to deal with all the crap in Robots in Disguise. Bee's "So Done" face could power a trip to Jupiter.

*I find it kind of weird that Bee had to sneak into a private sector of the museum despite his fame as part of Optimus’ soldier. The episodes are pretty clear about this, so why the curator or security couldn’t give a free access pass to him is questionable. I mean, it’s not like they had to write in the extra robots who aren’t going in the space bridge to avoid any writing hassle, they could have just handed Bee a card and told him, “You served Optimus, we trust ya.”

*Yes, I am worried Optimus’ subplot could overrun the general story, but I meant it when I said his current position is clever. He can chime in as the fortune cookie that he is whenever Bee needs a pick-me-up and do whatever mystic quest the universe decided they had to slap onto him because it’s refuses to give Optimus the sweet, sweet death he’s been longing for 31 years. The universe is a prick. (I’m not going to lie though: bringing Optimus back from the dead would make me cringe and I’d say it even if he was my favorite character; cheap deaths is one of my hated narratives.)

*Speaking of soul crushing, Billy the Breakfast Beaver will be in my nightmares for the rest of my life.



I feel so empty inside.


*Okay, so I can’t be the only one raising an eyebrow at the weird animation choice between Underbite and the bird, right? I mean, the entire cast is rendered to look cel-shaded except this one little bird who for some reason is traditionally animated (flash animated?)



I don’t get it? Is it more practical this way?

*The show has a smorgasbord of good lines, but I think my personal favorite comes from Bumblebee when he uses one of the weapons Fixit made for him—”Fixit, you are my favorite minicon.” —only to go on the fritz seconds later—”Fixit, I’m rethinking my rankings.” Dear GOD,  he has so much venom in his voice.

*I actually did not consider the idea of Strongarm as a teenager. Sideswipe I immediately got because he’s the rebellious youth type, but I always assumed Strongarm would be closer to Bee’s age, but with none of the war experience, hence her “newbie rank.” So color me surprised.

I think that’s about it. And now for your regularly scheduled program:



RESCUE BOTS, EPISODE 65: ALL BOTS GREAT AND SMALL
(When do I get my ridiculously show accurate Rescue Bots toys with shoehorned subliminal messages? Yvan eht NoiJ)




”A Lilliputian Revolution.”

I feel like I need to specify a certain scene in “All Bots Great and Small” because it truly captures the spirit of the demented universe that is Rescue Bots. Like this scene legitimately explains everything about the show and it’s a-freakin-mazing.

To understand in context, the Burns family is to be awarded for their years of services in the mainland. On the same day, Mayor Luskey starts a Robot Appreciation Week (probably the only smart move the man’s made in office—I’d totally go), forcing the Rescue Bots to stand put until the Burns return. After the Burns accept their award, the family boat gets caught in a tangle of kelp. This in itself is pretty bad because it means the Rescue Bots has to keep still even when danger is afoot that requires their assistant. After losing their only tool to untangle it, Dani dives below to loosen the kelp.The Burns is further hampered after by the arrival of a group of literally hundreds of jellyfish.

And before any of that, the episode opens with a brief thunderstorm that creates a mudslide. It’s like God himself decided to join the disastrous Griffin Rock isle to keep it in a perpetual state of misery for which there is no escape.

Setting aside events performed by acts of Divine, “All Bots Great and Small" is fairly standard. There’s several amusing tongue-in-cheek lampshading to the toyetic nature of Rescue Bots through the tiny toys the Mayor is swindling to the general public, but nothing that really stands out. If anything, there’s something horrifying about Luskey inserting a not-so-subtle messages to coax people into reelecting him. I mean, little children are seen playing with them.

The Bots’ dilemma also makes no damn sense.For the sake of the Bots’ alien origins; they don’t “function” unless their human hosts give a command. Buuuut a previous episode (I think it’s “The Alien Invasion of Griffin Rock”) had the Burns actually excusing an act they didn’t command as a sort of emergency auto-piloting that’s been “programmed” into them should the Burns be absent during a mission. I mean, having the Bots risk their secret identity while the Burns family is elsewhere is a good plot, but ya know, I’m just saying, kinda been solved.
:star::star::star: OUT OF FIVE STARS



BONUS OBSERVATIONS

”TAKE YOUR TV OUT TO A GLORIOUS AFTERNOON OUT IN THE SUNSHINE”: People already do that, Huxley, it’s called tablets and smartphones.

TEAM PLAYER: Charlie is quick to include Cody into the team when they go to get their award. It’s a great leap from the very first episode; Cody no longer feels left out because he’s too young to be an official first responder and Charlie is supportive of the role he’s had keeping the team informed.

CAN ROBOTS FEEL ITCHINESS? Well, Blades did which is weird because they’re robots. Then again, they can feel and experience pain, so justified???

IT WAS TOO OBVIOUS THAT IT WASN’T OBVIOUS AT ALL: Luskey accuses Doc for the faulty robots because he’s gotten genre savvy enough to know when shit happens, 95% of the time it’s Doc. For once, Green is not the accidental perpetrator of this heinous act.

ADULT JUICE: I have no idea why, but I am endlessly amused by Evan and Myles’ drink of choice: fruits and veggie drinks. Obviously you can’t give them beer cans or anything, but these two are rebellious enough to perform petty crimes that they just have to celebrate with the world’s tamest drinks. It’s cute.



And speaking of food, Kade shoves shrimp into his fire hat at the end of the episode. GROSS.

BEST LINE: ”If Dani were here, we’d be kicking tail rotor. Well, she would, I’d be taking names.”

Also, Blades’ imitation of Kade is funnier than it should be.

RUNNER-UP:

KADE: Which do guys think is my best side for the magazine cover?
EVERYONE: Your backside.

Pwned.  

WORST LINE: ”Way to knock off those knock offs.”

GO SIT IN THE CORNER, KADE.




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Archive
If you ever want a list of links to all the reviews/rants/analysis/time-wasters I wrote.

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REQUESTS: No, I do not. Sorry.
  • Listening to: Ori and the Blind Forest OST
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  • Watching: Reboot
  • Playing: Tomba!
  • Eating: Soup and Rice
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:bulletblue:If you want to read my reviews for Rescue Bots Season One and Two, click here: neoyi.deviantart.com/journal/A…



PREVIOUS SEASON THREE REVIEWS

53. Land Before Prime
54. Big Game

55. Too Many Kades
56. Phantom of the Sea
57. Unfinished Business
58. No Place Like Dome
59. Bugs in the System
60. Switcheroo
61. Bot-Tastic Voyage
62. Quarry's Quarry
63. Did You See What I Thaw

:bulletred: As always, SPOILERS!



RESCUE BOTS, EPISODE 64: THE ATTACK OF HUMUNGADO
(Look, just because I’m Asian doesn’t mean I’m going to say “Gojira.”)




“Attack of Humungado” is not just any silly monster movie, it’s a Kaiju classic! Which means it was made to be seen in a drive-in, big screen, lots of snack, and NO TALKING!”

I think it’s actually kind of cute to see Kade obsessing over something that might not necessarily be up his alley.I mean, it involves a giant radioactive reptile stomping on Tokyo like his big playground, so violence is probably a big factor on why it appeals to that lunkhead. And Godzilla is a pop cultural icon that anyone knows by name alone, but for a series of films that can easily sit aside other nerdy pastimes like Star Trek and whatnot, Kade’s adoration for the Humungado movies is a nice little addition to his personality. Course, this only proves the reach Godzilla has on a lot of people, so hey. They don’t emphasize it too much, but some of Kade’s knowledge is enough to keep the monsters at bay. He’s just obsessed enough to help the team contain Humungado and Ravenous, but dense enough that he doesn’t quite get the nuances behind the films (I bet he’d be real surprised if Humungado’s existence likely owes its life to the criticism of nuclear weaponry Godzilla was originally intended for.)

Otherwise, there isn’t much to say about “The Attack of Humugado”; Doc messes up with another ambitious invention and the Bots/Burns work together to fix the mess. Some admirable traits from Blades pop up when he dives in to keep the monsters at bay, but it’s routine. I guess they tried to squeeze in a commentary about how close friends and family will often get into tiffs. There might also be a lesson about enjoying the classics or something, but I’d probably get a lot more kick out of it if I cared about the Kaiju genre, but I don’t, so eh. Frankly, I think what I got out of this episode is that Doc’s version of “3D movie” proves 3D is a stupid gimmick and i dont like it 3d sucks go away forever.

Er, I like the monster design for Humungado. I think it was pretty cool of the writers to find a way to bring out the Dinobots in unique situations like these because they can’t just whip these out for rescue missions since those alt modes are a secret (for some reason) and because, well, dinosaurs and first responding don’t really go hand-in-hand.
:star::star::star: OUT OF FIVE STARS



BONUS OBSERVATIONS


NOT A SINGLE SPECK OF CRUMB, NOT EVEN FOR A MOUSE: Heatwave tells Kade and Cody not to get popcorn under his seat. You see both Kade and Cody dropping it all over on top of his seat instead; total difference.

BLADES IS NOT YELLOW-BELLIED… …He’s sky blue, thank you very much.

CUTE ANIMALS WITH KISSING AND STUNT FLYING: I’d pay to see this movie. I’d pay to see this movie. Sounds like a Disney thing; maybe Chip n' Dale Rescue Rangers if either of those chipmunks ever ended up with Gadget or something.

SPEECH IMPEDIMENT: Okay, so there’s one scene in this episode where Ravenous sounds like it’s saying “Yessssss” when they apprehend him inside the caves. So has anyone seen Danny Phantom because I kept getting “Saaaaam” vibes from it (from the DP episode “Memory Blanks.”) Because of that, I legitimately thought Ravenous would be capable of speech.

OW, MY ACHING FOOT!: Humungado steps on Blades at one point in the episode and I remember sitting there cringing. Also, it reminded me of this scene:





Rescue Bots, taking you out of your childhood one step at a time.

BEST LINE: ”A monster is munching on the mayor’s mansion and no, I will not repeat that.”

Chief Burns is sick of this bullshit.

WORST LINE: ”Don’t have anything to say? Don’t say anything!”

God, even Humungado gave off a face to indicate how lame that insult is.



____________________________________________________________________________________________

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Discovery (A Transformers Animated Fancomic): Read the entire thing here. Placed there for archival purpose. Recently cancelled.

:heart: OTHER STUFF:heart:


Archive
If you ever want a list of links to all the reviews/rants/analysis/time-wasters I wrote.

My Twitter: Follow me ramble in 100+ words or less here.

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REQUESTS: No, I do not. Sorry.
  • Listening to: Various
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  • Watching: Various
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  • Drinking: Nothing Right Now