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202 - Coming of the Fuzors, Part 1
"One moon now.... Hrrrm... Those markings... Waspinator knows!"And he heads back inside. Dinobot, observing from a ridge, also looks at the moon. But first he needs to deal with a heat-sensitive turret by borrowing from the climax of Predator. Inside the Darksyde, Waspinator approaches the golden disks (For the record, from now on "Golden Disk" in singular refers to the Maximal Disk, the Vok disk will be called the "Alien Disk"), but Megatron's security system shocks him when he tries to get them. Dinobot arrives, and grasps Waspinator by the neck. Both of them realize they made the same realization: With one moon, this planer is prehistoric Earth, and Megatron did lead them to the right planet. And the golden disks both contain information recorded in the future. Information granting unimaginable power. Waspinator proposes an alliance, and Dinobot accepts... by tossing his "partner" into the disks' security field, grabbing both artifacts while Waspinator is shocked, disassembled, his parts sucked by a magnet and drop into a compactor before being ejected. Backarachnia arrives, hauling Tarantulas' body, and though he urges her to not let Dinobot take the disks, she doesn't feel like fighting him. Dinobot makes his escape. She begins to work on restoring Tarantulas, while Waspinator complains.
"Oh, sure. Don't mind Waspinator. Waspinator just lie here and suffer. Drag himself to CR tank..." (keeps on grumbling as he drags his cubed body away)The Maximals have gathered around a Stasis Pod. The only one to have landed in their territory, tree more have landed near the Predacon base. Airazor and Tigatron both will go scouting the planet for the rest of the pods. Say bye bye to Tigatron and Airazor, they are not to be seen for most of season 2. However the pod they do have is no use. It is a blank, a protoform without a spark. But Rhinox believes it may yet be of help. Rhinox hopes Megatron's not any bit more lucky with his pods. At the two crashed pods, two of them open after more complaints from their computer about their damaged states, revealing hybrid, partially transmetalized creatures: A scorpion with a Cobra for a tail, and a Wolf with eagle wings, tail and talons. Both are confused, and evidently lacking in memories. The Scorpion, rather agressive, decides he can beat his counterpart in a fight, while the Wolf seems reluctant. The two begin brawling in beast mode, until Inferno arrives, attacking the pair, to the Scorpion's annoyance.
"Another one who thinks he's tougher than me!"The wolf is confused why they would be attacked while unprovoked, that it must be a misunderstanding. The Scorpion replies:
"Yeah, old Blender Butt there misunderstand my need to kick his keister."Both animals fight Blender Butt, but they are no match for him. After all, he's a tank. Oh, and Inferno utters his best line ever:
"Fool! Pain is my friend! Allow me to introduce you to it!"
Megatron observes the fight, enjoying it, but then orders his computer to reprogram both creatures activation codes while their security circuits are down. He then moves to take out Blender Butt, and play good cop to his bad cop, explaining it was a misunderstanding, telling them they are Predacons and teaching them to transform. The two fuzors introduce themselves: The psychotic scorpion is Quickstrike. The noble chivalrous wolf is Silverbolt. Megatron keeps a facade of being polite and nice and Maximal-like, but Quickstrike clearly cares not for that, while Silverbolt is just unsure. At the Axalon, Rhinox is getting some contraption ready. He will be offline for a bit, but refuses to explain what he's trying to do to Rattrap clearly, who is annoyed that Tigatron and Airazor are gone, as is Dinobot, and with Optimus dead, they might just invite Megatron in. Rhinox needs to do this now as the Planet Buster's destruction left a window in Transwarp space, but it will not remain for long. Rattrap orders Cheetor to fly and find Dinobot. Once he's gone, Rattrap wonders how Optimus did it. Atop a mountain, Dinobot contemplates his loot. The disks contain immeasurable power, but are limited: Any change done to history can't be undone readily. And atop of that, he does not know if history can be changed. If fate is unavoidable, fixed in stone, a thought that terrifies him: realizing he's not the master of his own destiny. He opts to not destroy them and take the coward's way out. Instead he will find the truth. He stashes the golden disk under a rock, and takes the other with him. It's a powerful scene, and that is further underlined in repeat viewing. Dinobot made quite a few hard choices, for the sake of honor and his own beliefs: When he signed up to steal the golden disk with Megatron. When he turned on Megatron over the later's perceived failure and betrayal. All hard choices that would utterly meaningless and void, if history was fixed. Dinobot would not be a bot of character and honor: Just a puppet being driven by the invisible hand of fate with no choice or will of his own. On the Darksyde, Blackarachnia restores Tarantulas' conciousness to his now Transmetal body. Silverbolt helps Blender Butt up, while Megatron spindoctors Predacon values for both Fuzors' benefits. When the Predacons spot Cheetor flying overhead, they give chase (though Silverbolt only does so after being shot at by Megatron), Quickstrike riding on Blender Butt's back. Silverbolt in particular, being a dog, seems to enjoy chasing a cat. Cheetor is able to use his speed and maneuvering ability to get rid of some of his pursuers, but Megatron can just plow through any obstacle. He informs Rattrap of his predicament. Rattrap in turns learns from the computer that if the base were to loose power (say due to an errant missile hit), Rhinox might die. He tells this to a returning Dinobot, who discreetly stashes the Alien disk away while arming himself like Rambo, and tells Rattrap then they most go out and intercept the Predacons. And that they do. Rattrap turns to roady mode, and rides along the ravine Cheetor is flying in, Transforming and diving it, hitting Megatron's truster with a gunshot as he does so. The maximals regroup behind a boulder, as do the Predacons. At the base, Tarantulas looks like he's about to eat or rape Blackarachnia, advancing on her menacingly. He reveals he kept a psychic link, and can still control and communicate with her. Megatron calls, pleased to see Tarantulas restored and a Transmetal (Weren't you pissed at the spiders a few hours ago last episode?) He orders them to meet up with him. Waspinator tries to tell him about Dinobot's theft, but he's told to STFU and get going. With his massive numbers advantage (6 to 3), Megatron prepares to wipe out the Maximals forever. To a tumbleweed and some western music, we see the Maximals prepare while Rhinox's consciousnesses lifts his body, as the Predacons gather up, Tarantulas arriving with Waspinator, while Megatron checks his watch. Both side get ready to face off, rising from their cover, readying their guns as the image turns sepia tone on the poor outnumbered Maximal trio. To be continued...
As usual, the review will be with part 2.
- Waspinator is familiar enough with the moon to recognize it on sight based on its markings. The comics offer an explanation: He was the crew's pilot, explaining his knowledge of moons and celestial bodies.
- Fun trivia from the same comic: Waspinator wanted to name the Darksyde, but lost a contest to do so to Terrorsaur. He'd have named it "Buzzerbot". Weirdly, Megatron agreed it'd have been a better name.
- Silverbolt introduces himself by saying "I think my name is Silverbolt". The original Silverbolt uttered a similar line ("I think I'm... Silverbolt") in the Generation 1 cartoon when he was first introduced.
- Unique among all Predacons so far, Quickstrike was not reprogrammed as a Predacon. He's just completely insane and psychotic. Either it is a result of the crash, or he was always like this, even as a Maximal. Pick whatever answer terrifies you the most.
- Dinobot quotes Hamlet for the second time: "To be, or not to be."
- This episode is the only one without Optimus Primal appearing in any form, including flashbacks, dreams or recycled footage.
Quickstrike is the only Predacon to have all three of their traits. He is Insane, treacherous and stupid.
Silverbolt really gets on my nerves, even more than Tigatron. Especially when he starts dating Blackarachnia and is completely hypocritical about her. I adore the ending of this episode. They go completely for the old timey western feel just for the hell of it, and somehow it really works.
An alternate possibility for Quickstrike is that he was actually a Predacon taken prisoner by the Maximals and kept in a stasis pod. For storage, much like Rampage.
I wrote this about Quickstrick on IMDB's Beast Wars forum, and now that I actually look at it, I was really channeling Roger Ebert here: "I HATED, HATED, HATED, HATED Quickstrike so much. He would always go "I'll beat you up real bad" every episode, and never, EVER, won. When Waspinator lost, I laughed and felt pity for him all at the same time. With Quickstrike, I don't get any of that. He was, hands down, the most one-dimensional character on Beast Wars. He wasn't much of a fuzor, either. Silverbolt was a fair balance between eagle and wolf mannerisms, but Quickstrike was all scorpion with not even a trace of cobra in his mannerisms"
Yeah, Quickstrike is pretty terrible. Also he suffers from "I have no real hands" syndrome which I always disliked.
Quickstrike is pretty much that iconic Brute personality that started back with Rumble and Frenzy in G1 (much like how Terrorsaur was the Starscream or Thrust expy). Let's see Hair-Trigger Temper? Check! Blood Knight? Check! Serves little more as Dumb Muscle to throw at the heroes and does so in a very Leeroy Jenkins like fashion? Check!
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