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Western Animation / Bolts & Blip

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Bolts & Blip is a Canadian All-CGI Cartoon produced by the Korean-Canadian 3D-animation studio ToonBox Entertainment (the creators of The Nut Job). It was posthumously created by the late Canadian animator Andy Knight, founder of Red Rover Studios and creator of such cartoons as Ned's Newt, Pig City, and Get Ed.

In The Future, world peace has been achieved and disputes between the nations of Earth are now resolved by the Lunar League Games — a set of tournaments where robots compete in sporting events set in a robot city on the Moon known as Crater City. All these robots were built by the mysterious Dr. Tommy, except for the malevolent Bloodbots, which were built by his former colleague Dr. Blood, who wants to put an end to the Lunar League Games and conquer the Moon.

Enter Bolts and Blip, two best friends and polar opposites stuck in boring civilian jobs who both dream of taking part in the Lunar League games. Then one day, due to a computer error, they get their chance. Unfortunately, they end up on the lowest-ranked team in the whole league, the chronically losing Thunderbolts, whose notable members include a prototype fembot named Saedee who serves as team captain, the hot-headed Coach Gridiron, and diminutive assistant coach Steve. As a result, our two mechanical misfit friends find themselves in all sorts of shenanigans as they and their ragtag band of teammates try to climb their way to the top, dealing with such enemies as rival battlebots like the Lunar League's #1 player Tigrr Jaxxon and the dreaded Reformatter machine that turns poorly performing battlebots into common household appliances.

However, things aren't all fun and games as Blip slowly starts uncovering a conspiracy that reveals the existence of a Sleeper Agent robot programmed by Dr. Blood to help him conquer the Moon, and of The Chosen One, a robot specially designed by Dr. Tommy to thwart Dr. Blood’s scheme.

The series debuted in June 28, 2010 on Teletoon, running for a single season of 26 episodes. It later aired in the United States in 2013 as part of the Vortexx block on The CW. During its run in America, the series became notable for being the only new cartoon to premiere in the very last season of broadcast network Saturday Morning Cartoons.

Bolts and Blip provides examples of:

  • Action Girl: Saedee is captain of the Thunderbolts and their most competent member. Also, the Iron Maidens, a fellow Lunar League team, qualify.
  • Beleaguered Assistant: Steve is this to Coach Gridiron. He longs to one day coach his own battlebot team.
  • Big Bad: Dr. Blood. His evil plans to conquer the Moon and destroy Dr. Tommy's legacy drive the show's Myth Arc.
  • Big Good: Dr. Tommy, as the beloved creator of all the robots in Crater City and archenemy of Dr. Blood.
  • Blood Sport: The Lunar League Games are the robot version of this, being fought between the various battlebot teams to settle Earth disputes.
  • The Chosen One: Blip. Dr. Tommy designed him to manifest super-powers for defeating Dr. Blood’s sleeper agent.
  • Cursed with Awesome: Saedee's malfunctions are beneficial almost as often as they are detrimental.
  • Deconstructed Character Archetype: Dr. Blood deconstructs the Only Sane Man. He and Dr. Tommy created world peace by convincing everyone to use the Lunar League Games as a substitute for war. However because Dr. Tommy was a Genius Ditz Manchild who got on Blood's nerves and Blood was afraid that in the long run world peace would make everyone but him become that way he decided to undo what he and Tommy did.
  • Does Not Speak Common: The mob boss Vinnie Two-Chimes only speaks in a series of binary code bleeps.
  • The Dreaded: The Reformatter. All the other robots are terrified of it, especially the battlebots, since a poor performance might lead to the Reformatter transforming them into appliances.
  • Drill Sergeant Nasty: Coach Gridiron is a classic example of the sports coach variation.
  • The Everyman: Blip. A good-natured and mild-mannered, if somewhat shy, robot who finds himself thrusted from his mundane civilian life to that of a battlebot and discovers his role in a huge conspiracy involving his creators.
  • Evil Twin: Since Saedee is introduced as a buggy prototype, Saedee 2.0 eventually makes her appearance. Of course she's actually an agent of Dr. Blood.
  • The Faceless: Dr. Blood is this until the last few episodes, with only his glove being visible in the same manner as Dr. Claw.
  • Family-Friendly Firearms: In the Lunar League Games, battlebots use water guns to fight each other, as it causes robots to instantly rust.
  • Fate Worse than Death: Being turned into an appliance by the Reformatter is considered to be this by the robots.
  • Fem Bot: Lunar City has both male and female robots, with Saedee being the most prominent female robot in the show.
  • The Fool: Bolts. Despite his impulsive and bumbling behavior and tendency to get himself into trouble with various figures, he always manages to find his way out (often with help from Blip) and is Dr. Blood's sleeper agent.
  • Forced Transformation: What the Reformatter does to robots, turning them into household appliances.
  • Genius Ditz: Dr. Tommy. Despite being the brilliant scientist who created every robot in the show and found the solution to world peace in doing so, he's also a goofy jokester and manchild who never takes things seriously.
  • The Ghost: Dr. Tommy until the end of the series, where it's revealed he's still alive.
  • Hidden Elf Village: The Land of the Shleprecauns, the little recycling robots that nobody seriously believes in.
  • Hunter of Monsters: Helsing-5, a robot who hunts robot vampires.
  • The Igor: D-Gor, Dr. Blood's abused assistant.
  • Jerk Jock: Tigrr Jaxxon. Bolts and Blip initially admire and look up to him, but once they become members of the Thunderbolts, his narcissistic attitude really starts to get on them.
  • Kent Brockman News: Clank Lockton and Lock Clankton, the resident reporters and announcers for every battlebots tournament. Clank constantly hogs the mic from Lock, who never gets a single chance to speak (except for the commentary of the final battle).
  • Losing Your Head: This constantly happens to Coach Gridiron due to his constant frustration with the Thunderbolts' constant losing streak causes him to literally blow his top when he's sufficiently enraged. Fortunately, as a robot, this has no effect on him.
  • MacGuffin: The Black Box, which contains the data for every single robot constructed by Dr. Tommy. Dr. Blood seeks it so he can finally locate his Sleeper Agent to lead his takeover of the Moon and discover the identity of The Chosen One that Dr. Tommy built to thwart him.
  • The Mafia: Bolts is frequently in trouble with Crater City's robot mafia led by Vinnie Two-Chimes.
  • Mecha-Mooks: Unlike Dr. Tommy's robots, Dr. Blood's Bloodbots seem virtually mindless, or at least personality-less.
  • Mineral Macguffin: Potofgoldium, which the Shleprecauns make from recycled trash and is able to enhance any electronics its put in. Dr. Tommy reveals in the finale that all his robots have a tiny amount of it built into their bodies that gives them the ability to act and think like people (like expressing emotions of friendship and love) unlike Dr. Blood's mindless Bloodbots.
  • Myth Arc: While the show is generally an episodic comedy, there is a recurring storyline in the background regarding Blip's discovery of his powers and destiny as The Chosen One to save Lunar City from Dr. Blood's sleeper agent.
  • Narcissist: Tigrr Jaxxon is massively in love with himself. To a lesser extent, Bolts qualifies as this too.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: Tigrr Jaxxon's voice actor, Glenn Coulson, voices the character using a freakishly accurate impression of Patrick Warburton.
  • No Waterproofing in the Future: Robots in the show's setting are instantly rusted by water, although it is totally harmless and only freezes them in place.
  • Red Herring: Tigrr is set up early on as the most likely suspect to be Dr. Blood's sleeper agent, but it's actually Bolts. Not that Bolts has any idea that that's what he is, of course.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: The immature and reckless Bolts is the Red Oni to the mid-mannered and level-headed Blip's Blue Oni.
  • Robo Romance: Blip and Saedee have feelings for each other, and their inability to confess them to each other is a recurring plot in the series.
  • Robot Hair: Saedee has a clump of wires in the form of a ponytail.
  • Robot Master: Dr. Tommy and Dr. Blood, who between the two of them built every other character in the series.
  • Sleeper Agent: Bolts is this to Dr. Blood. While Dr. Tommy actually designed him, but Dr. Blood had made him into his secret weapon to conquer the Moon. His efforts to relocate him among the thousands of robots living in Crater City are a major part of the show's Myth Arc.
  • Super Mode: Blip discovers he has one, but can't activate it when he wants to. He ultimately discovers in the finale that it is activated by The Power of Friendship (with Bolts) and The Power of Love (with Saedee).
  • Tomato in the Mirror: Bolts. He's Dr. Blood's sleeper agent, built from Dr. Tommy's schematics to become the leader of his takeover of the Moon.
  • Will They or Won't They?: Blip and Saedee. The two have feelings for each other, but are too awkward to admit it. They get together in the finale.