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Old 2010-09-13, 04:37 AM   #56
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Changing of the Guard
Airdate: 8 November 1998
Written By: Evan Somers
Japanese Title: Loose Fitting

Rhinox tries to use the outdated Teletraan-1 forcefield, but the technology is incompatible with Maximal tech. This causes Optimus Primal to send a team to salvage the Sentinel module from where the Axalon had sunk. With Depth Charge refusing to help, the Maximals plan to use a single-occupant aquatic vessel developed by Blackarachnia. A reluctant Rattrap is selected to be the pilot. Soon, Silverbolt drops the submarine into the lake where the Axalon had sunk, and Rattrap has a good time as he explores the underwater surroundings, and begins to extract the Sentinel module. The radar warns him too late of Rampage's arrival.

Rampage catches Rattrap's submarine in a single claw, and would've crushed it completely if Depth Charge hadn't intervened. The vengeful Maximal battle with Rampage, letting Rattrap escape back to the surface where he is retrieved by Silverbolt. However, Waspinator attacks Silverbolt and causes him to drop Rattrap. Quickstrike then keeps the Maximal duo busy while Waspinator delivers Sentinel back to the Predacon base. Quickstrike is knocked out accidentally by Rampage. Silverbolt tries to enlist Depth Charge's help to recover Sentinel, but Depth Charge is obsessed only with hunting down Rampage.

Rattrap and Silverbolt improvises and manage to steal back Sentinel from Waspinator with a few aerial acrobatics, but Inferno arrives and harasses the Maximals. Depth Charge has a change of heart and goes off to help, but his untimely arrival causes him to slam onto Silverbolt, and he drops Sentinel into Inferno's hands. The Predacons leave, victorious for once.

Back at the Maximal base, Rattrap and Optimus Primal berate Depth Charge for getting in their way and causing the Predacons to obtain a strategic advantage. However, because they offer Depth Charge a place among them again, and this time Depth Charge warily accepts. Meanwhile, a jubilant Megatron installs Sentinel in the Predacon base, encasing it in a force field.

Featured Transformers: Optimus Primal, Rhinox, Cheetor, Rattrap, Silverbolt, Blackarachnia, Rampage, Depth Charge, Megatron, Quickstrike, Waspinator, Inferno

(Seven out of ten)
Another aquatic-themed episode, although this one co-stars the more interesting Rattrap instead of just Depth Charge (which, if alone, would get boring pretty quickly). It's really too sudden and frankly unprofessional to have Depth Charge's unbridled vigilantism to end just after one episode, although I guess if it's pulled for too long we'll just have another Tigatron analog. The rivalry between Depth Charge and Rampage is, as always, well played but it's a little irritating that Rampage keeps running off between battles. The fact that the Predacons actually won from the Maximals for once is a nice twist. Changing the status quo like that is good storytelling... the Predacons actually obtaining Sentinel surprised me.

After not doing much for a couple of episodes, Rattrap gets back to form with his biting wit, and his camaraderie with Silverbolt is fantastic. That bit where Depth Charge's sudden change of heart at hearing explosions is realistic, as is the mistake when the uncoordinated Maximals clonk onto each other. The underwater scenes have improved from last issue, and the animators certainly are prepared to make more underwater scenes, what with the submarine being introduced and everything. Also, this episode follows up nicely on the loose ends left behind by the Axalon's destruction.

The 'Changing of the Guard' traditionally refers to an elaborate ceremony in England wherein the sentries providing ceremonial guard duties at important places are relieved by other sentries. This presumably refers to Depth
Charge joining the Maximals.

Inferno, Waspinator and Quickstrike spend their free time playing what seems to be poker with hexagonal playing cards.

Rattrap apparently whistles/sings the background music score for the underwater scene, since Silverbolt listens to the same music through the walkie-talkie with a raised eyebrow.

Again, as a running gag, Silverbolt is the only Maximal that could be defeated by Waspinator.

This episode marks the only time when Rampage uses his activation code of terrorize when he transforms.

When Silverbolt drops Rattrap's submarine, it bounces around like a pinball. When it finally comes to a stop, the dizzy Rattrap has 'TILT' flashing in his eyes.

The writer, Evan Somers, is mistakenly credited as Evan Sommers.

When Rampage stumbles backwards after pulling Depth Charge's tail out, his legs are miscoloured as Depth Charge's.

When Inferno pushes a tree towards Rattrap and Silverbolt, Rattrap's chest is inverted.

Quote, Unquote
Rattrap: "What are you grinning about, litter-butt?"
Cheetor: "I was just thinking... with you inside, this'd make a swell cat toy."

Silverbolt: "We're approaching the target area. How you faring in there, Rattrap?"
Rattrap: "I'm hot, I'm cramped, I'm airsick. Eh, the next time that big ape asks me to do something for him, man, I am gonna shove my blaster so far up his-"

Waspinator: "Doggy-bot no match for Waspinator."

Waspinator: "Waspinator having good day! Not get shot once." [Silverbolt shoots Waspy]

Inferno: "Stand and fight, vermin!"
Rattrap: "Oh yeah? Shrivel up and die, ant!"

Last edited by Blackjack; 2010-10-16 at 02:53 PM. Reason: format
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