The Rebirth, part 1
As we're all aware, Optimus Prime was
brought back to life and used
Rodimus Prime's MacGuffin the
Matrix to stop the Hate Plague, which got him even Galvatron's temporary
respect. Of course, as Goldbug, Strafe and Lightspeed are chatting about what a
nice day it is, they say that Optimus clobbered the shit out of the Decepticons
shortly after that event, commenting that those guys must be spread all over the galaxy by
now. How about that!
Then Scattershot spoils the mood by pointing out "a million blips" on the radar, which can't be good. Thanks a lot.
Meanwhile, Ultra Magnus pops in to see
Optimus Prime, who's been feeling rather woozy ever since releasing the energies
of the Matrix, fearing that something hugely monstrous is going to happen... and
bang on time, Goldbug warns him about this Decepticon assault. The Throttlebots
finally have an opportunity to talk, pondering why the Decepticons would strike
again in such huge amounts, but they cut the chat for later, as Optimus is
leading them out to battle!
Galvatron's got some new goons on his side, and they waste no time in tearing into the Autobots. Apeface pounces onto Wide Load and throttles the tinfoil out of him, Snapdragon bops Freeway on the bonnet, and Mindwipe battles Chase by commanding him to back away. This actually works because Chase backs off a cliff like an idiot. While Skullcruncher deals with the remaining Throttlebots, the Decepticon clones Pounce and Wingspan are totally busting into Autobot City!
Thankfully, Punch is
spying on the
two fiends, and decides to do some snooping of his own... in the guise of his Decepticon counterpart, Counterpunch! The duo make their way into a
certain chamber, aiming to bust open a locked door, and Counterpunch claims he
was sent by Galvatron to check up on them, but he's just told to push off, hoser.
He proceeds to demonstrate his incredible smarts by changing back to Punch,
firing one shot, and then getting clawed to death by Pounce's wolf mode, putting
him out of action.
The two open the door and find a black key inside, which they swipe and make a hasty getaway with. While Ultra Magnus commands the Throttlebots and Technobots to lead a charge, it doesn't really lead anywhere since the Decepticons have got what they were looking for and make a hasty retreat to the mothership, which they then use to return to Cybertron. Prime and Magnus have a bad feeling about this supposed victory, and upon seeing what's missing, they nab every Autobot they can spare and get them to the shuttles. Their destination? Also Cybertron!
On Cybertron, Hot Rod and Blurr are having a friendly race, Daniel sitting inside the driver's seat of the former and giving a few hints and tips; Blurr's in the lead, but spins out upon seeing a pop-up target of Cyclonus, but Daniel sorts that and other targets out with some laser fire. Hot Rod is the winner! Blurr complains that Hot Rod won because he had help from Daniel, which Brainstorm thinks is great - the powers of a Transformer, but the knowledge and guidance of a human! Hardhead's not too keen on it and thinks it's stupid, while Cerebros is annoyed that the Transformers are always fighting, is it worth dragging humans into it as well?
Kup thinks it's a swell idea, though the discussion is cut short by him receiving a message from Optimus, warning him that every bloody Decepticon ever is approaching, and they've gotten the key to the Plasma Energy Chamber (located twelve levels below Generator C!), which was what forged the bodies of the Autobots millions of years ago or some crazy ass stuff like that - every Autobot leader has been charged with guarding it with their life, so yeah, don't let them get to the chamber.
The Decepticons arrive and the Aerialbots are the first to contest them, only to be taken down by Sixshot's six exciting modes. Scourge is spotted by Kup and company to be making his way inside Cybertron, so they follow after in an unnecessarily large shuttle.
Scourge makes his way to the chamber and inserts the key, which only succeeds in causing energy to spew everywhere and render him unconscious. Spike and Cerebros head out to extract the key, but upon doing so, explosions rock the shuttle violently! They head back inside to "get them out of there..."
Only for an explosion to blast them out of
the Cybertron's surface and spiralling into space. Which, apparently, also
screwed up the navigational controls, too. Hot dang.
Galvatron and his lackeys find Scourge,
berating him for letting the Autobots beat him up and reclaim the key, but upon
being booted up again with some energon he explains that he didn't even
encounter the Autobots,
but merely overpowered by the power from the Plasma Energy Chamber. It nearly
killed him, and also sent the Autobots' ship spiralling away, so he, Cyclonus,
Slugslinger, Triggerhappy and Misfire are sent to track
down the ship and get what they need.
Back on the ship, Chromedome notes that the engines have finally burnt out so there's a chance they can actually steer the ship now. Which is almost convenient, since they're heading straight for a planet on a crash landing; or more likely, a plain vanilla crash! Blurr reduces to a babbling wreck (not that that's anything new), prompting Hardhead to slam his mouth shut, just as they crash into a purple ocean.
Instead of just sinking to the bottom and exploding like a high velocity crash like that would demand, they conveniently surface and drift straight for a coast, just in time for them all to evacuate and then explode, effectively stranding them.
As they set about exploring, hoping to find some kind of help, or at least a payphone...
A group of suspiciously human aliens are spying on them! These two automatically fear them due to them being machines, fearing they're drones sent by "the Hive," though while one of them doubts that the Hive would ever make anything like that, they believe better safe than sorry is a good motto to live by, and warn the others.
Elsewhere, the Decepticons are on their way!
Sureshot laments that while they're stranded on this crazy planet, their chums are getting the seven shades kicked out of them elsewhere, but Brainstorm reminds him that it's not like they can do anything to prevent that. While Kup goes into a tangent about one time seven hundred soldiers fought three crazy-sized monsters, it's cut short by them running across the aliens and attempting to make friendly greetings...
And totally getting laser-tied. Spike doesn't take this kindly, trying to tell them that they're Autobots, defenders of justice and fighting crime in a future time, but while some members of this resistance believe it to be a trap of the Hive, some decide to sort it out like diplomatic gentlemen, and take them all back to their lair.
Back on Cybertron, Optimus Prime gives Fastlane and Cloudraker, the Autobot clones, the task of searching the planet for the key to the Plasma Energy Chamber while he, Magnus and the Throttlebots try again to fend off the vast Decepticon forces.
The whole planet. Seriously. It's smaller than Earth, but it ain't that tiny enough for two men alone to do it, Prime.
And skipping back to the crazy planet (now revealed to be called Nebulon!), the aliens have planted magnetic bombs on the Autobots and aim to blow them up until they die, much to Spike's chagrin, having failed to convince them they're good guys and all, but these dudes believe all machines to be evil and prepare to blow the charges.
Until the Decepticons arrive, finally prompting them to believe Spike that they'll get crushed into toothpaste if they don't let the Autobots fight against them, but they argue back that they'd have twenty machines after their blood instead of ten if they do that, but they give in to his demands anyway. And upon doing so... the Autobots get clobbered. So much for an epic turnaround.
Even Blurr, who you'd think would almost get something good to do, just drives into Skullcruncher's mouth and gets throttled. Stupid Blurr.
Hot Rod and Pointblank try to make a getaway, only to get shot down like pathetic doofuses. Arcee somehow gets her hands caught in Snapdragon's mouth, which prompts Daniel to attempt to be a big man and save his robot buddy...
And you can see how well that goes down.
Brainstorm finally gets a good idea of throwing the magnetic bombs at the Decepticons, which actually works pretty well, though at the expense of Hot Rod, Kup, Sureshot, Pointblank and Crosshairs all being kidnapped by the fleeing villains. Chromedome, Brainstorm, Hardhead and Highbrow attempt to give chase, but it's a bit of a lost cause, really.
Daniel's in pretty rough shape with severe injuries over his manhandling, though, but the Nebulons have some medical equipment they can use, though. Meanwhile, the four Autobots assume the Decepticons went through a forest and up a hill, but the locals tell them not to bother as there's no chance of their survival. Highbrow, in a nutshell, calls them assholes for first trying to kill them and now preventing them from saving their friends, and they make their way into the forest anyway.
KILLER HANDS OF CERTAIN DOOM
"I'm beginning to see why you guys don't like machines," Hardhead notes as they barely escape with their lives, and they decide to regroup at the caves. Daniel is shown to be able to live, but only with a variety of life support machines, so it's not too bad. The Autobots ask one of the Nebulons about who built the machines, and he complies.
The Hive built them: The machines looked after the environment and boring things like that, but they were also enforcers, capturing people to work for them, so the bitch hierarchy goes: people > machines > Hive. The Hive live far underground, led by Lord Zarak, and they can control machines with their minds which also act as their eyes, ears, and their external means of physical violence.
Of course, ever since discovering this, the small resistance group have been fighting back ever since. Time for a run-down of who they are!
Dauros, Stylor, Arcana (he and Gort, also pictured, are strategists!)...
Pinpointer, Firebolt, Recoil...
Haywire, Peacemaker, and Spoilsport.
Will you actually remember of these guys? You'd better. They're only around for three episodes, they need all the attention they can get!
Every one of these dudes is a master warrior, but all they're lacking is the power and size to stand up against their machine oppressors... in a word, their minds in the bodies of the Transformers. (how about that foreshadowing you guys) They believe it's the only way they'll win this war, the only thing to protect the key to the Plasma Energy Chamber, and the only way to save Daniel from being tied to a life support system for the rest of his days. Let's do it.
They set about making blueprints, and the four of them and Arcee are more than ready to give it a shot, reminding them all that their memories won't be erasaed when their heads are removed, they'll just be downloaded to their chests, which is convenient. Cerebros isn't interested in it, though, claiming he wants nothing to do with this war and wishes to never fight again. That doesn't put a damper on things, though, and after Arcee calls dibs on Daniel as her partner, they set about beginning the operation.
"Autobots, you are about to become... Headmasters."
This is probably more confusing than actually watching the damn thing, no thanks in part to me only naming characters once they actually do something of worth, hence why the likes of Crosshairs and Highbrow are named so late. Still, they only have these personalities for two more episodes and then they're reimagined for The Headmasters, so it's no big deal.
Just in case the fact that a prophetic feeling of shit hitting the fan was enough to make Optimus fall to his knees didn't bring it across hard enough, he won't be anywhere near as badass as he was in the first two seasons. The following two episodes make it obvious!
Like half of the new characters aren't even named, particularly the Decepticons, but all those generic Nebulons get names. How's that for justice?