As some of you may be aware, I am notoriously weak-willed when it comes to avoiding spoilers re: stuff I really like.
Especially if it’s TF-related material.
So naturally, once decent quality leaks of part 3 of the Transformers: Prime season finale aired, I could not resist.
(More after the jump – here there be spoilers!)
So, I’m not gonna bother recapping the plot points here, I’m assuming you all watched it – so here’s my general thoughts:
- Unicron – we got him as Earth itself. Which is friggin’ awesome and ballsy, PLUS he’s also a clear and present danger because they can’t actually kill him without killing the fleshies. So instead we got the compromise “Matrix KO punch him into stasis lock”. Which still allows forces to come and try to resurrect him – eg, the original Megatronus himself, The Fallen. Who, if pretty much every other continuity is used as a reference, is not dead yet.
- Further on Unicron, John Noble was a completely out of left field choice, but an awesome one. They did clear voice processing on him, but it was a great new take on Unicron. Orson Welles is hard to beat, but Noble basically played Denethor/Walternate, only as an immortal robot god. Plus, it’s totally plausible for him to come back, too!
- Another Unicron point (yeah, yeah, I have lots to say on him!) but the redesign on him worked well. Watching part 1, once we saw his body, I found myself freezeframing it and comparing it to the TakaraTomy 2010 Unicron toy a few feet away. And pretty much all the iconic Unicron features are intact, with Prime styling – plus they gave him the BW Neo giant mouth claw shoulderpads! (Which I love). Also loved how the battle kinda reminded me of how Unicron kept sizecheating in TF:TM, plus the whole impossibility of actually being able to fight him and win got recognized.
- That said, Megatron. After watching part 1, I was kinda worried we were getting a “subserviant to Unicron” Megatron. Which worried me, given one of my fundamental readings of Megatron’s character across continuities and iterations is his refusal to kneel to anyone, no matter how powerful. His rebellion in part 2 and his utter defiance was completely in character with the Megatron I know and love – and heck, his COMPLETE HONESTY regarding how he was only going to help the Autobots until Unicron was stopped was awesome. Megatron may be one evil bastard, but at least he’s an honest one. Plus, he totally gets props for being able to resist Unicron as long as he was cognisant despite being powered by a shard of the Chaos-bringer’s very being – not even Galvatron was able to pull that in TFTM.
- Soundwave. Is. Badass. Love how he totally mopped the floor with Airachnid when she tried to step out of line. I find it interesting though how she’s replaced Starscream, and for that matter is actually more G1 Starscreamy than Starscream himself. Whereas Prime Starscream starts off loyal to Megatron, gets a taste of power, then gets continually disillusioned as he sees how nutso his leader’s gotten, Airachnid is FAR more self-serving and oppurtunistic. Which unfortunately makes her far more transparent. Until Soundwave put her in her place.
- Dem flashbacks were pretty awesome too. Especially having read Exiles today, so I now know a bit more about the Thirteen… and am actually contemplating a comic regarding them now, that said. And the Prime/Megatron backstory was great as well; it really shows how far Hasbro intends to go with this aligned continuity as it followed the events in Exodus fairly closely. (But then, I was under the impression as-is that Exodus was pretty clearly taking most of its cues from Hasbro’s TF bible…)
- And last, but not least…. Prime himself. Or should I say, Orion Pax. This was the big thing NOBODY saw coming – that Prime would use the Matrix, and with it all his memories of being a Prime. Which, on further reflection, actually makes some sense – the Matrix of Leadership contains the memories and wisdom of all Primes, past and present, so if it got dumped, it follows so would all memory of the current Prime. There’s a slight plothole here as in that the way the flashbacks tell it, Orion didn’t become Optimus until much later in the war (when he saved the core), but if we take Exodus into account, he got the TITLE of Prime back during the council meeting. As a result, if the Matrix dumped all his memory from then onward this plotpoint does make sense.
- As for Prime losing his memories…. honestly, I hope this remains the status quo. If past shows have taught us anything, the most interesting leaders have been the ones who were fallible – Rodimus, Primal, and TFA Optimus come to mind – and TF:Prime Optimus has kinda been the wise, perfect leader all this time. However, when he inevitably figures out that Megatron’s irredeemably evil now (which I’m sure he will by the second or third ep of Season 2), I see potential in a story where he has to live up to HIS OWN legend. It’s honestly something we haven’t quite seen before; the idea that he’d have to learn what it means to be a Prime w/ no Matrix or anything, and that he’d have to figure it out on his own. After all, the show is called “Prime”, and I seem to recall the idea of “what it means to be a Prime” was one of the core ideas of the franchise. Season 1 was about building up Prime – now they’ve gone and torn him down totally and completely, and I hope there’s a journey here and not a copout.