IT IS THE YEAR 2005

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Thad
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Re: IT IS THE YEAR 2005

Postby Thad » Sat Jul 03, 2021 5:43 pm

...you know what? The new comic has a lettercol. Maybe I should write in and tell them I want to hear that story.

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Re: IT IS THE YEAR 2005

Postby Thad » Sat Jul 03, 2021 6:03 pm

Also, while I like my "there's only one disk, the Vok disk and the Cybertron disk are the same object from different points in the timeline" theory, on reflection I think it's likelier that there are two disks because there were two golden records; one of them is the Voyager I record and the other is the Voyager II record.

Still, IIRC they just kinda stop mentioning the Vok disk about a third of the way into season 2. Maybe I'm misremembering; I'll see if it comes back up again by the end of the series.

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Re: IT IS THE YEAR 2005

Postby Büge » Sat Jul 03, 2021 7:03 pm

Thad wrote:The show does not address the question of how a message that was recorded in 1984 at the earliest found its way onto a record that was created in 1977.


Because Megatron found it in the intervening years between the original cartoon and Transformers: The Movie?
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Re: IT IS THE YEAR 2005

Postby Thad » Mon Jul 05, 2021 2:36 pm

How good is the Beast Wars comic?

Here I am talking about how what Dinobot's arc really needed was some time spent establishing that he's a victim of prejudice and that he still believes in Megatron's cause even though he doesn't believe in Megatron himself, and damned if two weeks later I'm not holding a comic in my hands that does exactly that, right upfront, in his very first conversation with a Maximal.

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Re: IT IS THE YEAR 2005

Postby Thad » Mon Jul 05, 2021 2:48 pm

Büge wrote:
Thad wrote:The show does not address the question of how a message that was recorded in 1984 at the earliest found its way onto a record that was created in 1977.


Because Megatron found it in the intervening years between the original cartoon and Transformers: The Movie?

Here's what the script says:

MEGATRON (VO)

The Golden Disk was launched from Earth
aboard the Voyager Spacecraft just as the
secret war between the Autobots and
Decepticons began.

BACK ON MEGATRON
Looking crafty despite his bonds.
MEGATRON (R)

The original Megatron -- your commander --
had every intention of winning. But like
myself, he covered his bets.

BACK TO FLASHBACK -- CLOSER ON THE GOLDEN DISK IN SPACE
Now flying by Saturn. We SEE faintly in its surface the
reflection of the original GI Megatron’s face as a LASER BEAM
streaks down and begins scribing into the edge of the disk.

MEGATRON (R CONT)

He inscribed a secret message into the
Golden Disk.


BW Megatron gets the details wrong when he says the Voyager launched as the war was beginning, but OTOH that reference to Saturn does suggest that the writers were aware G1 Megatron would have had to have caught up with the probe sometime after it launched.

The timing still isn't quite right -- the Voyager probes passed Saturn in 1980 and 1981, still years prior to the Ark awakening -- but if we're gonna No Prize this shit, then yeah, the most sensible explanation is that G1 Megatron caught up to one of the Voyager probes some time between season 2 and the movie, and BW Megatron is a little hazy on the historical details. (I mean, he didn't immediately call bullshit when Starscream told him he died defending Galvatron from Unicron, either.)

And yeah, I wouldn't mind seeing the comic tell that story. Though of course it's still early days yet and The Agenda is still way out.

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Re: IT IS THE YEAR 2005

Postby Thad » Mon Jul 05, 2021 3:43 pm

Thad wrote:How good is the Beast Wars comic?

Here I am talking about how what Dinobot's arc really needed was some time spent establishing that he's a victim of prejudice and that he still believes in Megatron's cause even though he doesn't believe in Megatron himself, and damned if two weeks later I'm not holding a comic in my hands that does exactly that, right upfront, in his very first conversation with a Maximal.

Hell, there's even an exchange where Dinobot makes a remark on the prison cell they're keeping him in and Optimus responds that it's not a prison, it's a safe area for malfunctioning protoforms.

Which feels a lot like a response to the same criticism I had about Optimus and Rhinox wanting to put the Transmutate into stasis lock.

This comic is on my wavelength, y'all.

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Re: IT IS THE YEAR 2005

Postby Thad » Fri Jul 09, 2021 12:18 pm

The new Transformers comic opens with a time jump, "40 cycles later", which would probably be more impactful if I knew what the fuck a cycle was. (Beast Wars is delightfully inconsistent about how long a cycle is, in much the same way it's extremely cavalier about the geography of the Earth.)

From context, I think cycles probably mean something like days in this series? Weeks, tops; it doesn't seem like it's been 40 months since the previous issue.

In which case it's really a pretty anticlimactic time jump.

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Re: IT IS THE YEAR 2005

Postby Thad » Fri Jul 23, 2021 1:18 pm

Circling back to what Brent said about losing track of the show around the end of season 2:

Brentai wrote:I started to lose interest in Beast Wars after Dinobot's death too but honestly I think that's because they changed the time slot and the show had become way too sequential to follow.


The airdates from there on in really were all over the fucking place. According to thetvdb, season 2 ran on Sundays up through Bad Spark, which ran on February 22, 1998. Then the show was off for two weeks, and then the last 5 episodes of the season (starting with Code of Hero, the one where Dinobot dies) ran Monday, March 9 through Friday, March 13.

Season 3 got even weirder. It started on Sundays too, and stayed there up through February 14, 1999, and after that it looks like this:

S03E08 Go with the Flow
February 18, 1999 [Thursday]

S03E09 Crossing the Rubicon
February 22, 1999 [Monday]

S03E10 Master Blaster
March 15, 1999 [Monday]

And then the last 3 episodes ran Wednesday, May 5 through Friday, May 7.

Now, as always, take crowd-sourced airdates for a syndicated TV show with a grain of salt*, but this is consistent with how I remember it. My recollection is that I'd only been watching the show sporadically, caught Deep Metal (S03E02) on a weekday afternoon (so it must have been a rerun) and had no idea what was going on, but watched every episode from Feral Scream Part 1 (S03E05) onward when they first aired and by then I was mostly caught up. Feral Scream aired about 3 months after Deep Metal, so there was time in there for me to fill in most of the gaps watching the 5-days-a-week reruns.

(IIRC I hadn't actually seen Code of Hero when Feral Scream -- which introduces Dinobot 2 -- aired, but I'd read about it. bwtf.com was really the go-to fansite at the time, and presumably the reason I even knew when to watch those last weirdly-spaced episodes. I'm pretty sure I'd seen CoH by the time the finale aired, though.)

What a weird way to air a show. It never made sense for 5-day-a-week syndication, either; it didn't have enough episodes and they weren't divisible by 5. Typically when you do a 5-day-a-week show, you want to start with 65 episodes; 13 weeks, 5 days a week. Beast Wars only has 52 episodes total.

* current mood: grumbling about Thundercats

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Re: IT IS THE YEAR 2005

Postby Thad » Wed Jul 28, 2021 10:50 am

Among the many, many questions about how Transformers are supposed to work, one that Beast Wars raises is "How do they age?"

Like, there are multiple occasions when other characters behave as if Cheetor is younger than Silverbolt or Blackarachnia, and...he objectively isn't. He's part of the cast in the first episode when they're still unactivated protoforms.

Y'all I'm not sure this half-hour toy commercial has fully thought out the life cycle of space robots.

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Re: IT IS THE YEAR 2005

Postby Mothra » Wed Jul 28, 2021 11:23 am

I'm excited to see what the fuck this Beast Wars thing is going to look like. I somehow never expected them to ever attempt to bring back any of those characters, partly because, as far as I know, the Beast Wars CG show wasn't a thing outside of the US.

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Re: IT IS THE YEAR 2005

Postby Thad » Wed Jul 28, 2021 12:15 pm

It was made in Canada (where it aired as "Beasties" due to a rule against using the word "war" in the title of children's programming) and got exported to Japan (which produced a couple of spinoffs).

But ultimately, all the western Transformers media are the result of an American company trying to sell toys, and cashing in on nostalgia has been a good big part of that since, well, Beast Wars. And Beast Wars is older now than G1 was when the first Michael Bay movie came out, so it's ripe for nostalgia of its own.

...anyway, were you talking about the new live-action movie, or the new season of the Netflix series? Because both of them are Beast Wars-themed. Here's the War for Cybertron: Kingdom trailer:


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Re: IT IS THE YEAR 2005

Postby Büge » Wed Jul 28, 2021 4:26 pm

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Re: IT IS THE YEAR 2005

Postby beatbandito » Wed Jul 28, 2021 5:17 pm

can't believe transformers snagged TFwiki
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Re: IT IS THE YEAR 2005

Postby Thad » Thu Aug 05, 2021 1:36 am

Shout Factory has a 35th anniversary edition of Transformers: The Movie coming. Looks like it's got a pretty impressive list of special features.

NEW 4K Transfer Of Original Film Elements

NEW Feature-Length Storyboards, Including Deleted, Alternate And Extended Sequences

NEW Fathom Events 30th Anniversary Featurette, Including Stan Bush's Acoustic Performances Of "The Touch" And "Dare"

'Til All Are One – A Comprehensive Documentary Looking Back At The Transformers: The Movie With Members Of The Cast And Crew, Including Story Consultant Flint Dille, Cast Members Gregg Berger, Susan Blu, Neil Ross, Dan Gilvezan, Singer/Songwriter Stan Bush, Composer Vince DiCola And Others!

Audio Commentary With Director Nelson Shin, Story Consultant Flint Dille And Star Susan Blu

Archival Featurettes – "The Death Of Optimus Prime," "The Cast & Characters," And "Transformers Q&A"

Animated Storyboards

Original Theatrical Trailers

TV Spots


It's in 4K, too -- though apparently only the widescreen version. Which seems a little odd, because AIUI the movie was made in 4:3 and cropped to 1.85:1, not the other way around.

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Re: IT IS THE YEAR 2005

Postby Thad » Thu Aug 05, 2021 5:51 pm

The biggest new development in the latest issue of the Beast Wars comic is that Dinobot is badly injured -- and those injuries appear to be permanent.

It's a fascinating direction for a character whose arc is all about struggling with the loss of his identity. In this version, he won't just be a Predacon who's no longer a Predacon, he'll be a warrior who can no longer be a warrior.

I like how the comic has portrayed him as not just a savage fighter but a canny tactician; that gives him a bit more dimension than the cartoon (where, for as much as he constantly claims he's a great warrior, he seems to completely disdain any strategy more complex than "go out there and shoot them in the face"). I don't know exactly where his arc is going (though I expect it to end in much the same place as in the cartoon), but having him reluctantly transition from a front-line fighter to more of a strategist role could make for some interesting drama.

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Re: IT IS THE YEAR 2005

Postby Brentai » Thu Aug 05, 2021 6:30 pm

I don't remember Dinobot ever winning a fight except for the one where his own survival was not a condition.

I guess you could argue that he is a great warrior, but that also makes him an ineffective soldier.
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Re: IT IS THE YEAR 2005

Postby Thad » Thu Aug 05, 2021 6:38 pm

Brentai wrote:I don't remember Dinobot ever winning a fight except for the one where his own survival was not a condition.

He fucking eats his clone in Double Dinobot, but that happens off-camera.

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Re: IT IS THE YEAR 2005

Postby Brentai » Thu Aug 05, 2021 6:42 pm

I mean, that still technically counts.
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Re: IT IS THE YEAR 2005

Postby Thad » Thu Aug 05, 2021 7:02 pm

I can think of a few other examples -- he beat Terrorsaur in Equal Measures, Megatron in Chain of Command, and Quickstrike in Maximal No More. He and Optimus beat Starscream together. And he probably blew up Waspinator once or twice; who didn't?

He also damn-near killed Tigatron, but that doesn't really count since Tigatron was refusing to fight back.

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Re: IT IS THE YEAR 2005

Postby Mongrel » Thu Aug 05, 2021 9:30 pm

Thad wrote:And he probably blew up Waspinator once or twice; who didn't?

Ahahahaha
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