Just one episode for today’s recap because it is insane and therefore requires lots of screencaps. It’s episode 11 and is called “The Shadow Emperor, Scorponok.” It begins with the Autobots at their main base on planet Athenia, where Daniel and Wheelie are (understandably) upset that Cybertron was just destroyed. Arcee gives this helpful advice:
If it seems like Arcee is getting over the destruction of her homeworld quickly, just wait until you see how the rest of the Autobots deal with it.
Chromedome announces that it’s time to head to Earth where their new leader Cerebros has an announcement. But it’s not just an announcement, there’s more.
Yup. They’re having a PARTY. Their homeworld was just blown up and their old leader has abandoned them but it’s time to celebreate! Here they go:
Clapping, energon treats, they even hung a chandalier. Don’t expect the plot to kick in anytime soon. These guys are ready for a party! Wheelie eats and his cheeks bulge out. Cut to:
Yeah, Arcee has been relegated to a mother hen role, nagging Wheelie to slow down. Meanwhile, Hardhead of the Headmasters is completely DRUNK and pestering Twincast to transform into a karaoke machine. The other Headmasters are not impressed by his behavior.
Yup. He’s drunk off of one drink. Finally, Twincast gives in to Hardhead’s nagging and plays a song for him. And it’s the show’s closing credits theme song which Hardhead knows the words to! Very meta.
I haven’t shown the closing credits yet. It’s very Japanese. The hell with it. I’ve been holding off but here they are:
The song shows each Headmaster transform into their vehicle form and Spike and Daniel trying to do the same.
So yeah. Hardhead sings that song. Then Wheelie tries a drink.
Finally, Chromedome asks Arcee for a dance and they trip the light fantastic.
If you wanted dancing and singing robots, this episode is the one for you. It’s certainly one way to deal with the pain of permanently losing your home. Meanwhile, the Decepticons are gathered back on planet Chaar and they wonder if Galvatron could have survived the destruction of Cybertron. Keep in mind, we explicitly saw Galvatron caught in the explosion that destroyed an entire planet and he was at ground zero. See for yourself:
So they ask Soundblaster if Galvatron could still be alive? His response is not the most eloquent and probably puts no one’s fears to rest:
I’m recapping these as I watch them for the first time so I would assume Galvatron’s dead. Either way, Soundblaster’s non-commital reply cracked me up. The shadowy figure of Zarak appears and addresses the Decepticons.
I’m not sure if he’s telling the truth or not. I can’t see why he would lie but it’s hard to believe Galvatron could survive. We’ll have to file that note in our back pocket because either way, Zarak mentioning that will have to come up down the road.
So yeah. He says that Galvatron appointed him leader. This seems like a lie because we never saw Galvatron say anything like that. But who knows? Either way, the Decepticons do not fight over leadership like they did in the movie when Megatron died. They just take Zarak at his word and tow the line.
Back on Earth, Spike announces that he has built a satellite called Solar 1 which can gather the sun’s energy and beam it down to Earth. It’s a massive amount of energy that could solve the world’s energy problems. I was pretty shocked that Spike was a scientist. He grew up as a handiman on an oil rig and then got co-opted into the war of the Transformers. I figured he was just some sort of ambassador for human/Transformer relations. This makes me wonder when he took the time off from the war to go to school. Was it just like Transformers 2? Did Sparkplug visit the campus and get high on pot brownies?
Daniel thinks Solar 1 is a really cool name. Kid, what your father’s invented is astounding. You should be proud. But he’s no marketing genius. That’s one generic name. Of course, this is Wheelie and Daniel so things get stupider:
Pathetic. How do you travel through outer space every other day and miss basic words like this? Before everyone can berate Wheelie for being stupid, Chromedome notices a giant purple cassette tape on the ceiling. Ratbat has been spying on them. He transforms and takes off.
Despite the room being filled with sensitive equipment and dozens of human scientists, Chromedome fires wildly and hits nothing. Ratbat escapes and I guess flies all the way back to planet Chaar. Through Soundblaster, he relays the news about Solar 1 to Zarak. Zarak comes up with a plan to steal it and after the meeting, Cyclonus and Scourge bitch like a pair of old spinsters.
They think Soundblaster is a sycophant. I think they’ll transform into a pot and a black kettle next. They are also worried about being licked by their boss which brings up a whole mess of weird politics I don’t want to delve into.
The first part of the plan is for the Predacons to destroy the satellite right before launch but the Trainbots hold them off.
The satellite launches but the Decepticon Headmasters steal it in outer space without really any trouble at all. Back at Chaar, Zarak tells them it has a lot of energy. The Headmasters turn into the Three Stooges and have trouble counting.
Zarak has a plan for the energy and has them take the satellite to planet Zarak, hidden in a gaseous nebula. The Autobots just sort of guess correctly where it was taken.
Cerebros tells the Headmasters to get Solar 1 back and not to damage it. Because the episode wasted so much time on the party, there’s no time to do any detective work and their guess just pays off. Here’s the Headmasters flying through space to get Solar 1.
Sometimes they need a spaceship, sometimes they can fly. No consistency with the rules on this show. You just have to accept it.
There’s a big fight around Solar 1 between the Autobot and Decepticon Headmasters but eventually, Solar 1 fires its energy deep into the nebula and we, the audience, see that it is powering up a shadowy but huge robot. The Autobots can’t see this, but they know the Decepticons have accomplished their goal. The Decepticon Headmasters, having accomplished their goal, announce they are retreating but warn the Autobots that if they try to take Solar 1, they can mentally blow it up!
The Decepticons are coming off pretty great this episode. No squabbling over leadership, accomplishing their goals, thinking to include a destruct option on Solar 1 when the Autobots didn’t, not having a party. Anyway, the evil Headmasters fly away. Chromedome and the Headmasters aren’t sure if it’s the right thing to do but they blow up Solar 1 so that the Decepticons can’t use it anymore. They head back to Earth and Spike tells them…
Shocker. He’s not mad at them. He says he’ll build a better one eventually. Maybe he should include a destruct option this time. That ended up working out very well for the Decepticons.
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