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Old 2011-03-25, 08:42 AM   #5
Blackjack
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Bullet Train to the Rescue
Airdate: 11 September 2001
Written By: Yukiyoshi Ohashi
Adapted By: Steve Kramer
Japanese Title: Unite! Bullet Train Robo

Synopsis:
Sky-Byte scolds Gas Skunk and Slapper for randomly attacking freight trains when they should be searching for energy. The Autobots watch a news report of the launch of the Linear RFG, an automated train set to make its first run. Koji is excited to be on the train. A concerned Optimus Prime summons the Autobot brothers in case the Predacons try anything. As the train launches, the Predacons plant a bomb, which sabotages the train tracks before it crosses a bridge. Side Burn and Prowl battle the Predacons, while Optimus tries to radio the trains' command center. However, Dark Scream's meddling disrupts the communication. To save the day, Optimus tells T-AI to summon Team Bullet Train.

Railspike, Rapid Run and Midnight Express all abandon their respective passengers (including Kelly, naturally) and rush across the Space Bridge beside the Linear RFG. Optimus Prime and the Autobot brothers battle the Predacons who are planting a bomb in the track ahead. Railspike radios Koji and asks him to request the driver to slow down the train manually, but the brakes aren't working, and the RFG speeds up instead. Ignoring Midnight's silly suggestion, Team Bullet Train link up to the RFG to slow it down. The Predacons retreat when the bomb explode to watch the anticipated destruction. Despite Team Bullet Train's attempts to slow the train down, it won't stop in time before plummeting into the gap. Optimus Prime transforms into his super mode and stops the train from derailing. Sky-Byte tries to shoot the train down but Side Burn shoots him down first. Megatron arrives and battles the Autobots. After moving the RFG into safety, Team Bullet Train combines into Rail Racer and beats Megatron down. The Predacons retreat, and the trains all return to their work.

Featured Transformers: Gas Skunk, Sky-Byte, Slapper, Optimus Prime, Side Burn, Prowl, X-Brawn, Dark Scream, Railspike, Rapid Run, Midnight Express, Megatron, Rail Racer
Notable Others: Koji Onishi, T-AI, Kelly

Review:
Basically this episode is another 'New Toy' episode, promoting Team Bullet Train. Not much happens this episode and it's very boring and repetitive. Team Bullet Train are mostly generic and without personality, even more bland than the rest of the cast other than their relatively distinctive voices. Midnight Express is my favourite because he sounds a bit like a snob, but that's finding something tolerable among a sea of mediocrity. All things considered, though, it's pretty boring. The plot of the super high tech train is unoriginal, and the Autobots' efforts to protect it from the Predacons aren't interesting in the least. Dialogue is boring... there are some jokes lobbed around but the delivery (and the flanged voice of many of the characters) makes it hard to decipher that it's actually, you know, a joke. Koji gets way too much screen time than he deserves as well.

(Three out of Ten)

Notes:
First appearances of Team Bullet Train: Railspike (J-Four in Japan), Rapid Run (J-Seven in Japan) and Midnight Express (J-Five in Japan, as well as their combined mode Rail Racer (JRX in Japan). For those that have trouble telling them apart (I know I do) Railspike is the white and blue with the bubble cockpit and gruff accented voice, Rapid Run is the sharp-nosed one with the yellow face, Midnight Express is the one with yellow and blue markings and a voice like Tracks.

Ever since G1, Rail Racer is the first combiner that had appeared in fiction since the shows during the Beast era are bereft of combiners. Rail Racer refers to himself in the plural form.

Like Prowl and Optimus who act as ordinary vehicles that are part of the police for and the fire department, and X-Brawn who is 'owned' by Kelly, Team Bullet Train also work as proper trains when not in action.

The Bullet Trains can magically generate train tracks in front of them.

Originally this episode was titled 'Bullet Train Rescue', and is referred to as such even by some DVD releases.

Goofs:
Stealing the power from a train is a bit far fetched, to say the least. In the original Car Robots episode, Sky-Byte just wants to prove to the humans that the Predacons are powerful.

When following alongside the train, Optimus Prime says the he needs to get back to HQ, but in the next shot he's still beside the train.

At one point Sky-Byte has details in his mouth instead of the usual all-white.
 

Last edited by Blackjack; 2011-11-23 at 04:34 AM.
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