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Old 2010-10-17, 08:22 AM   #60
Blackjack
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Talking

Proving Grounds
Written By: Arthur Sellers
Airdate: 14 February 1999
Japanese Title: Love Typhoon

SYNOPSIS
The Maximals examine Blackarachnia's interior structures with an X-Ray machine, and Rhinox finds the location of the shell program that Tarantulas had inserted into Blackarachnia's protoform. A frustrated Blackarachnia snaps at Rattrap (who is suspicious) and Cheetor (who is infatuated), and leaves the Maximal base to clear her head after overhearing Optimus and Rhinox discuss an operation on her. Dinobot II, who is spying on the Maximals, stalks her. Blackarachnia finds herself walking into a secluded forest, and reflects on her situation when she notices Dinobot. After a scuffle, the two begin to hunt each other through the forest. In the Maximal base, Rattrap plays a video game but is evicted by Silverbolt, who uses the computer to locate Blackarachnia, and is surprised to find her in Predacon territory. Silverbolt manages to convince Rattrap not to report this to Optimus Primal, and sets off to rescue his beloved.

Blackarachnia and Dinobot continue their battle, tearing their way through large trees in a deeper, darker woods. Dinobot ultimately manages to trap Blackarachnia under two fallen logs, but Blackarachnia shoots Dinobot at pointblank. She manages to free herself and tries to radio for help, but doesn't notice Dinobot regenerating from his injuries. Fortunately for her, Silverbolt arrives. Meanwhile the other Maximals realize that Silverbolt and Blackarachnia are away, and heads off to help.

Silverbolt arrives near Blackarachnia, but is promptly attacked by Dinobot. Dinobot gains the upper hand, trapping Silverbolt's head in his optic laser, but Blackarachnia shoots Silverbolt, telling Dinobot that the fight is between the two of them. Blackarachnia proposes an alliance with Dinobot, but is rejected. Dinobot attacks, but Silverbolt uses the distraction to stand up, and uses Dinobot's hologram emitter used earlier on to fool Dinobot, and they shoot Dinobot over a cliff. Blackarachnia and Silverbolt argue about Blackarachnia's seeming betrayal. Blackarachnia explains that it was a stalling tactic to fool Dinobot

Blackarachnia tells Silverbolt of her decision to leave the Maximals, not wanting distrust to harm both parties. She headbutts Silverbolt, but it knocks both of them out. Optimus Primal arrives, and Blackarachnia confronts Optimus about the operation she overheard him discussing. Optimus explains that the choice falls to Blackarachnia alone and that the operation would not be forced. Satisfied, Blackarachnia remains with the Maximals.

Featured Transformers: Blackarachnia, Rhinox, Optimus Primal, Cheetor, Rattrap, Dinobot II, Silverbolt

REVIEW
(Eight out of Ten)
A nice little spotlight about Blackarachnia. Blackarachnia's character have been gradually developing episode by episode, and this little confrontation about her true loyalties is well-executed and is a natural development. Her frustration with the Maximals not trusting her, and simply taking a walk to clear her head, is a great character moment. The fight against the new Dinobot in the forest is very moody and brutal, although there are quite a bit of uncomfortable double entrendes in the dialogue between Dinobot and Blackarachnia. The little holoprojector also looks kind of phallic.

The romance between Silverbolt and Blackarachnia is well done, and while it may be a little cheesy, it feels... natural, somewhat. Dinobot II is also a nice foil for Blackarachnia, being a sadistic, people-shredding monster. The new Dinobot seems to be a cross between Rampage and the original Dinobot's personalities, being sadistic yet fair-play at the same time. That little moment where Silverbolt evokes the original Dinobot's memory to convince Rattrap to let him find Blackarachnia is also a nice moment. A great, tense spotlight for Blackarachnia.

NOTES
As of this episode, Blackarachnia now considers herself a Maximal officially. But then it's been that way since the start of season three, only that this is 'official' instead of just an alliance of convenience.

Dinobot's Transmetal two powers allows him to heal himself from his injuries almost instantaneously. Perhaps a side-effect of having half of Rampage's spark?

Rattrap plays a game based on 'Street Fighter' but uses a pixelated version of Transmetal Megatron and a simplified version of Optimus Primal.

Later, Rattrap plays a first person shooter game ala Doom, but instead of demons he shoots Waspinators.

GOOFS
While she is in the X-Ray machine, Blackarachnia's beast mode legs are missing from her hands. Then again, they won't fit there...

The damage on Blackarachnia's body sometimes disappears for short moments during the forest battle.

At one point when the Maximals try to locate Silverbolt and Blackarachnia, a piece of Rhinox's green parts clip through his chest.

Quote, Unquote
Blackarachnia: "What's the matter? Don't you trust me?"
Rattrap: "About as far as an anvil can jump." [Blackarachnia chokes Rattrap] "Of course, I mean that in the best possible way."

Blackarachnia: [to Dinobot] "I'm beginning to like you, skullface. Let's play."

Blackarachnia: "Mood, setting... all I need now is my dance partner."

Dinobot: "Now hold still. This will hurt."

Silverbolt: "You're going to hear the truth if it h-"
Blackarachnia: [headbutts Silverbolt in the face] "Warned you... ooh, not such a... great idea." [Falls to the ground]
 

Last edited by Blackjack; 2010-10-17 at 08:40 AM.
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