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Old 2010-04-16, 02:25 PM   #39
Blackjack
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With that, Season One is finished. I'm taking a break from Beast Wars (Sades, you're welcome to do Season two if you want). It's tiring me out, honestly, and I'm planning to work on the comics section for a while. I've got some Tales of the Fallen, Last Stand and Ongoing comics, and I want to review them for a bit.

No, I'm not abandoning BW. It's just on hiatus for a month or so.

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Other Voices Part 2
Airdate: 1 April 1997
Written By: Larry DiTillio
Japanese Title: "To Protect the Peace"

SYNOPSIS
Cheetor and Tigatron stare in fear at the Vok superweapon as the moon continues powering up to space. Optimus Primal orders all Maximals to return to base. As usual, Rattrap says that they are all going to die, but Primal is sure that Rhinox can find a way for them to survive. Meanwhile, the dome structure finishes transferring energy to the weapon, and the Vok depart, returning to Nexus Zero. Megatron and his troops observe this from their base. As the troops panic, Megatron calmly scans the Maximal base, detecting Tarantulas, Blackarachnia and Inferno within.

Tarantulas is converting a stasis pod with the transwarp drive he stole from the Predacon ship into an escape ship. Blackarachnia observes that the pod is rather cramped for two, but she pulls out her weapon, double-crossing Tarantulas. Before the two could battle, though, Inferno arrives and blasts Blackarachnia, and sets Tarantulas on fire, knocking him out. Blackarachnia continues to battle Inferno, using her superior agility to elude Inferno and ultimately knocking the fire ant out with his own weapon. Blackarachnia uses Tarantulas' cyberlink goggles to obtain the data she needs to finish the pod ship, but as she stares into Tarantulas' mind, Tarantulas isn't as weak-minded as she thought...

The Maximals arrive at the base, shocked at seeing Sentinel down. As they enter they find Rhinox and Dinobot webbed to the ceiling. Rattrap and Airazor are dispatched to hunt down the infiltrators, while the damaged Maximals are placed in CR chambers. Megatron is delighted as the data flow from Tarantulas' body to the pod continues. Suddenly, the 'Planet Buster', having finished its transformation sequence, opens fire on the planet. Primal activates Sentinel just in time as the surroundings begins to burn. The Maximals and Predacons both deduce that the Vok intend to ignite the energon deposits. Megatron notes that this will obliterate the entire planet, an incredibly ruthless strategy that he admires. Megatron, however, assures his troops that he has one reliable card to play -- the unwitting Tarantulas.

Blackarachnia finishes uploading data at into the pod ship, only to find herself being held at gunpoint by Rattrap and Airazor. Primal and the Maximals begin to panic themselves, with Rhinox still out. However, Primal's outlook changes when he sees Blackarachnia's pod ship. Primal plans to use the pod ship so that he can fly up to the Planet Buster and detonate the transwarp cell to destroy it.

Blackarachnia reprograms the ship to respond to Optimus Primal, and after a farewell with his teammates, takes off. Megatron is delighted when he realizes that Primal is the one flying the vessel. The tension is high as Primal reaches the Planet Buster, and ignites the Transwarp cell. However, as he tries to blow the hatch seals, he discovers it to be locked. Apparently, Megatron has hacked into the stasis pod's software, planning to use the same trick with Tarantulas. His face appears in front of Primal as he gloats, stating that the pilot will go up with the ship. As Primal pounds on the sealed hatch, the Maximals wonder what is going on. Blackarachnia says that it's too late in Tarantulas' voice. The Planet Buster and the pod ship both explode, and with it, Optimus Primal as well...

Transformers Featured: Cheetor, Tigatron, Optimus Primal (killed), Rattap, Airazor, Terrorsaur, Scorponok, Waspinator, Tarantulas (transferred into Blackarachnia’s mind), Blackarachnia, Inferno, Dinobot, Rhinox

REVIEW
(Nine out of Ten)
A wonderful conclusion to the first Season of Beast Wars. Megatron's counter-plan to Tarantulas' treachery is wonderfully executed, and his gloating speech at the end of the episode is nice. The tense atmosphere in this episode is evident, but there are some light-hearted moments as well. Optimus Primal's death seemed final, what with pieces of his body flying towards the camera as the Planet Buster explodes. While seeing an Optimus die might seem routine, remember that to kids who aren't familiar with G1, it would be a shock to them. Besides, it's a rather excellent death, with Primal being tricked into the situation by Megatron.

The Planet Buster's transformation is well animated, and it's a good thing that the Vok exit the stage as soon as it's activated. They are rather dull and it's nice to see that no more screentime are wasted on them. Rattrap's sarcasm are hilarious in context. Tarantulas being inside Blackarachnia's head is a rather disturbing prospect, yet a nice plot twist as well. The dialogue is well-scripted, being hilarious and dramatic all at the same time. Most of the characters (bar Rhinox and Dinobot) get one or two good dialogues thrown in, even the Predacon stooges panicking. The death of Optimus Primal is a wonderful cliff-hanger, as is Tarantulas/Blackarachnia's unique situation. It just makes you want to go to the next episode and discover what's going on...

NOTES
The first proper death in Beast Wars, after Clone One and Snowstalker, is Optimus Primal himself.

The name of the Vok's 'Death Moon' superweapon was dubbed as the 'Planet Buster' by Rattrap, and it stuck. I prefer ‘Death Moon’ myself, but oh well…

Tigatron’s excuse to pilot the pod ship instead of Primal, he says “I owe this world”. This might be a reference to his guilt after the death of Snowstalker in “Law of the Jungle”, as well as destroying the Island Paradise in “The Trigger part 2”. For a pacifist, he blows up lots of things.

Megatron’s parting line, “You Optimuses do enjoy sacrificing themselves” might be a reference to the numerous time Optimus Prime has sacrificed himself.

If you listen closely as the pod slams into the Planet Buster, there is the sound effect of Optimus firing a gun (perhaps his arm cannons) and glass shattering. It’s as if he attempted to blast his way out, but it’s too late.

If you watch the final scene in slow motion, you can see Optimus Primal bits fly towards the camera, including his head.

Apparently, Megatron was slated to taunt Optimus Primal on the stasis pod not with a video recording of himself, but with an image of Optimus Prime. This did not make it to the final cut, though. Most likely because they have no time to make a CG model for Prime.

GOOFS
Last episode, Dinobot falls into the elevator glass on the right hand side of the screen, breaking the glass. But this episode, the left elevator glass is the broken one.

Apparently, according to Primal and Megatron, the Planet Buster ignites every living thing on the planet, yet after the events of this episode, there are still lots of organic living things on the planet. Perhaps they were just exaggerating?

When Blackarachnia grabs Inferno’s gun, her body clips onto Inferno’s for a couple of seconds.

As Airazor searches for Blackarachnia with Rattrap, she jumps into a hallway at one point. However, her gun does not move with her, leading to her hand grasping at thin air while her gun gets stuck on her, well, armpit.

As Optimus Primal lies on the pod ship, his shoulder pads are much smaller that what they are supposed to be. But then, this seems to be a deliberate attempt as otherwise they’ll clip the cramped stasis pod.

When Megatron laughs at the end of his speech, his right hand is a normal head instead of a T-Rex head.

Quote, Unquote
Cheetor: "Suffering circuits, what could it be?"
Tigatron: "The light at the end of the world."

Airazor: "Cheetor and Tigatron are coming."
Rattrap: "Oh, ter-rific. Now we can all get reduced to hot burning slag together."
Primal & Airazor: "Shut up, Rattrap!"

Megatron: "Brilliant. They're causing a chain reaction which will rip this planet to atoms and destroy all treaces of them simply to deal with us! Such sheer ruthlessness. Such disregard for sentient life!" -pause- "I rather like these aliens."
Terrorsaur: "Like them? They're trying to destroy us!"
Waspinator: "Waspinator not want to be destroyed. Waspinator has plans!"
Scorponok: "Megatron will save us!"
Megatron: "I think not. I've reserved that task for Tarantulas."

Optimus Primal: "I'm betting I can fly close enough to take it out."
Rattrap: "With what? One of your famous 'we can do it' speeches?"
Optimus Primal: "A transwarp explosion." -silence-
Blackarachnia: "Haha! You'll blow yourself to atoms!"
Optimus Primal: "If it saves this planet, it'll be worth it. If not, I'm no worse off."

Rattrap: (all the other Maximals volunteer to pilot the pod in Primal's place) "Hey, suicide ain't in my job description."

Rattrap: "Just in case you don't come back... can I have your quarters?"
Optimus Primal: "No."

Megatron: "Oh, you Optimuses do love to sacrifice yourselves, don't you? Well, fortunately, this time your foolishness will destroy you, and your Maximals. The Beast Wars are over, Optimus. You. Lose."
Optimus Primal: "MEGATROOOOOOOOOOOON!"
 
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