108 - Double Jeopardy
I'll pick "The Rapist" for 500, Trebek.
Obvious jokes out of the way, our episode begins in space, with a stasis pod crashing in the arctic... Wait a minute, that sound familiar. Am I watching Fallen Comrades again? No, in fact, this time it's Optimus and Dinobot who are near the pod, at the bottom of a canyon. Rattrap, guiding them from the ship, leads them to realize the pod is up on the edge of canyon. However, Terrorsaur, Scorponok and Waspinator attack. Boxed into the canyon, Dinobot takes damage, while Waspinator grabs the pod and leaves. Optimus tries to pursue, but he's shot down by Terrorsaur and crashes messily. The Predacons retreat with their prize.
In the Maximal base, Optimus complains that their three last operations have been ambushed. Sounds like someone would be giving the Predacons info. Dinobot, ever happy to star something with Rattrap, mentions that Rattrap guided them to the boxed canyon where they were attacked. The rest are incredulous, except Optimus, who tells Rattrap they need to speak in private.
In the Darksyde, the lifeform scanner is activated. It scans a black widow as it devours its mate. Tarantulas, it turns out, is manning the scanner, and selecting a beast form for the newest Predacon. The new Predacon, Blackarachnia, is introduced. Megatron suspect Tarantulas had ulterior motives in selecting her beast form. She practices a few kicks in the background, as Megatron sarcastically thanks the Maximals for their "gift".
Back at the Autobot base, as the Maximals discuss if Rattrap could or could not turn traitor, Optimus decides Rattrap's loyalties are suspicious, and sends him on a mission to collect Energon in the "lava pits", in Decepticon territory, to prove his loyalty... Somehow... Rhinox wonders if Optimus is letting his emotions over losing the pod get the best of him.
During the mission, Rattrap reports finding nothing. The Predacons are listening in on this conversation, and Megatron dispatches Terrorsaur to take out Rattrap.
Rattrap is attacked by Terrorsaur, and after a bit of fighting, surrenders, offering to switch sides, since the Maximals don't trust him anymore. His radio is still on, so the Maximals hear the whole discussion. Terrorsaur demands his personal loyalty, and Rattrap gives it, changing his insignia to that of the Predacons, to the disbelief of the listening Maximals.
Back at the Predacon Base, Rattrap is in a cage behind Terrorsaur, who announces his plans to take over the Predacons to the lot of them (Megatron included), with Rattrap as his lieutenant. The speech is hilarious for while Terrorsaur gives his speech, Rattrap (in rat form) keeps punctuating his sentences with funny gestures in the background.
Megatron points out Rattrap might just be a plant, and Rattrap sneaks out of his cage to taze him. The Predacons offer to continue debating Terrorsaur's bid for leadership, but in private, so Rattrap and Megatron are put in cells, hanging over lava.
Optimus orders the other Maximals to ready to assault the Predacon base, as he can't allow Rattrap to remain in their custody, as he's too dangerous a tool. Rhinox and Cheetor are still in disbelief, but Dinobot looks forward to taking care of the traitor.
Megatron uses his own voice code to override the lock ("The wise tyrant always makes sure his cells are designed for his personal escape.") on his cell and get out, noting he'll get his revenge on Rattrap, after regaining power. Rattrap reverts his insignia, and reveals a set of lockpicks, unlocking his cage and jumping to a nearby passage, nearly falling in the lava. He begins sneaking in the base, while the other Predacons' debate is going nowhere. Scorponok is loyal to Megatron while Tarantulas and Blackarachnia don't seem to care who is in charge.
As he reaches a crossroads, a rat comes across Rattrap, points the way to him, , and he decides to follow it, it nods to him in recognition.
Outside the Darksyde, the Maximals are gathered, but Optimus holds off the attack until he gives the order.
Rattrap finds the computer the Predacons use to listen on Maximal transmissions, and opens it, finding a Maximal chip inside, which he retrieves. He then tries to find a way back to his cell. Tarantulas finds the rat that helped Rattrap, and is about to eat it when Rattrap steps into a laser tripwire, causing one of Tarantulas' web to activate, trapping him while alerting the insane Predacon who discards the rat. Rattrap cuts himself free and makes his way to his cell, but Tarantulas sees him climbing back. Sadly he's not fast enough, and Rattrap shoots him, blowing his leg off and severely damaging him. Rattrap sends a signal.
Optimus receives the signal and declares the attack, the Maximals transforming and hitting the Predacon base. Inside, Terrorsaur panics as Tarantulas is missing, the codebreaker is offline, the shields are failing, and Megatron approaches him, but Megatron decides to leave him in command during the battle, to let him show his own incompetence. Terrorsaur orders Rattrap freed and a sortie.
Waspinator gets Chaingun of Doom'd ...again. Though outnumbered, the Maximals lay the smackdown. Rattrap fires at Optimus, causing him to crash. Cheetor blows all of Blackarachnia's spider legs off, but she kicks him unconscious, before leaving the battle. Dinobot beats the crap out of Terrorsaur, and prepares to finish Rattrap off, but Megatron stops him, grabbing Dinobot and demanding Rattrap destroy Dinobot, while Terrorsaur gets back to his feet. After a bit of hesitation, Rattrap headshots Terrorsaur, and Dinobot frees himself, beating Megatron down. The Maximals and Rattrap make their escape, as Rhinox transforms to beast mode, stampeding over Waspinator (He's got it out for the poor bot doesn't he?) and Scorponok, clearing a path.
As Terrorsaur's body looks for his head, Megatron asks his men who would follow Terrorsaur's lead now? All of them shake their heads. Megatron makes a short tally of Terrorsaur's short rule: Blackarachnia is MIA, an unknown amount of damage inflicted by Rattrap while on board the base, and a battle lost.
Back at the Maximal base, Dinobot tries to execute Rattrap for his betrayal, but Optimus reveals it was part of the plan. Rattrap shows them the decoder chip, probably found on a broken piece of the Axalon from the crash and Optimus explains it was necessary to keep them in the dark, even during the battle to ensure Rattrap's safety.
Blackarachnia's introductory episode. She does very little in it, when you think about it. Otherwise this episode continues the theme of "Rattrap is awesome". It's a fun watch. Megatron's trick of letting his minion faceplant themselves to prove their ineffectiveness contrasts with his namesake and Starscream. Indeed, after this episode, Terrorsaur makes no serious attempts to take command of the Predacons*
- During the initial fight between Rattrap and Terrorsaur, Rhinox tells Dinobot "Told you he was no Predacon clone". Megatron's use of clones will feature extensively in the future.
- Blackarachnia is back with the Predacons in the next episode, no explanation of where she went or when/how/why she returned is given.
- Most DV Ds tend to mix up the order of the next episode. I'll follow the airing order, so next episode is "A Better Mousetrap".