Trivia / Exo Squad

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  • Executive Meddling:
    • The writers wanted the ExoFrames to be fully-enclosed, but the executives insisted on being able to see the characters' faces inside. While it doesn't make a lot of sense to have the front of the E-Frames so poorly protected, being able to see the pilots does do a lot from a dramatic standpoint.
    • Michael Edens said this about Alec's death and revival:
      "Originally, we had no intention of bringing DeLeon back. As a matter of fact, we had originally intended to kill DeLeon on Mars when it blew up — if you carefully watch the episode set in Australia "The Dream War" (I believe that's the title), you will see that DeLeon's death on Mars is foreshadowed there. One of the executives at Universal strongly objected to killing a major character so we settled for the temporary supposed death of Torres. However, an executive at Playmates found out about our original idea and really liked it — so we killed DeLeon on the moon and then brought him back, primarily because of the Black Box idea we built into the Mars episode."
  • Keep Circulating the Tapes: Season 2 hasn't been released on DVD, the show hasn't been rerun on cable since the USA Network had cartoons, and it disappeared from Hulu, so this is your only option.
  • Playing Against Type: For Universal Animation as a whole; it mainly tended to make adaptations of other media, most often Universal movies (all those sequels to The Land Before Time, the Earthworm Jim cartoon, etc.), and tended to not be very serious. This was a completely original property, and was pretty much uncomedic.
  • Screwed by the Network: Despite the fact that it was produced by the mighty Universal and had a toyline backing it up, the show only lasted two seasons because of stations relegating it to undesirable timeslots (mainly due to A: lots of "trash TV" taking up the afternoons where cartoons went and B: the newly launched UPN and The WB affiliating with independent stations). Though it did receive reruns on USA Network later on, one wonders why they just didn't move it there and continue it (considering they had done a similar thing with TekWar after its' initial run as part of Universal's Action Pack).
  • Serial Numbers Filed Off: At one point around 2001-02, the Playmates banner "Re:Play! Toys" issued Tech Wars toys to K-B Toys locations and the like, with the Neosapiens replaced by robots. (In a bit of Lampshade Hanging, one of the biocards said about Lt. Jimbo Mayer- the JT equivalent: "known to his fellow troopers as "Toy Guy", this toy collector turned soldier not only invented the Tech-Suits, but also continually upgrades and repairs them."
  • Show Accuracy/Toy Accuracy: The toy versions of the E-Frames had different color schemes that weren't as accurate to the series; the missiles and other weaponry were often just one color as compared to the series' multiple colorations.
  • What Could Have Been:
    • According to these storyboards for the series pitch-film from Will Meuginot's old website, the series was originally titled Exoforce; The Other Wiki says it was changed for trademark reasons when Playmates got the toy license.
    • JT was originally named "Mace Corbitt", as indicated in promotions for the unproduced comics and an early print ad in Broadcasting magazine.
    • A third season was planned that would have shown the surviving Exo-Squad humans and Neosapiens joining forces to battle an invasion from another alien race but the series was unfortunately canned before that could happen - on a cliffhanger no less. They also planned a concurrent series called Exo-Pirates to run with the third season and link up at the end. After that, they pitched a movie idea, but Universal's feature dept. was "cool" to the idea, which was then dropped. (One wonders why they didn't try to make it direct-to-video, or even on the USA Network- after all, that's where reruns aired and Universal had previously moved TekWar from their Action Pack to USA...)
    • During the show's run, toys from the Robotech line were released under the Exo Squad banner, which led to rumors such as alien forces from the series finale of the latter would have somehow been tied to the Robotech universe. But per story editor Michael Edens, he and the other writers didn't know about anything relating to a potential Robotech crossover until they saw the toys; while he did say that he would've been happy to incorporate Robotech elements as long as it didn't interfere with their own plans, such a crossover never happening on-screen may have been for the best, because this exempted Exosquad from all the massive legal troubles regarding Robotech.

     Historical Allusions 
Exo Squad contains many allusions to historical events, particularly, the history of warfare, which an educated viewer can easily discover.

  • "Blitzkrieg" (episode 1.04 title) is a tactic invented by the Nazi Germany for WW2, which involved very rapid combined arms assaults (it literally means "lightning war"). This is just one of many allusions used in the show to liken Phaeton's regime to Adolf Hitler's rule.
  • "Scorched Venus" (episode 1.08 title) is a pun on "scorched earth", a military tactic of denying the enemy valuable resources by destroying ("scorching") them.
  • Sean Napier's words "One thing you can say for Phaeton, he makes the magnotrains run on time" in episode 2.06 ("Mindset") is a direct reference to the famous quote about Benito Mussolini.
  • Nick Tyree's one-word-answer "Nuts!" to Shiva in episode 2.21 ("No Surrender") is a reference to General Anthony McAuliffe's refusal to surrender after his 101st Airborne Division was surrounded by Germans during the Battle of Bastogne.
  • "The Lost Patrol" (episode 2.24 title) may be a reference to Flight 19 (lost in the Bermuda Triangle in 1945), seeing how it is the first episode where Terrans come in contact with alien technologies. This more likely a reference to film of the same title, which the plot of the episode loosely mirrors.
  • "The Art of War" (episode 2.33 title) is a reference and somewhat of a pun on the famous Big Book of War by Sun Tzu.
  • "One Small Step" (episode 2.34 title) is a reference to Neil Armstrong's first words during his very first EVA on the Moon. In context, it refers to the reconquest of the Moon but it is also symbolic, seeing how the Tranquility Base is featured prominently in the episode.
  • "Abandon Hope" (episode 2.38 title) is a reference to famous quote from Dante Alighieri's The Divine Comedy. Dante had it inscribed at the entrance of hell, Phaeton had it on his bunker. Guess what it makes Phaeton himself, then.
  • This was likely a deliberate effort on Phaeton's part; Another infamous quotation that any Neo-Sapiens would find significant is, "It is better to reign in Hell than it is to serve in Heaven."