The title “Attack the Shuttle Base!!” makes it sound like the Decepticons will attack the Autobot’s headquarters. But that’s not what this is about. It’s another Decepticon mission to raid some energy, this time from a space shuttle. It begins with Hellbat apparently meeting Deathsaurus for the first time, even though he was involved in a mission last episode. I’m not surprised that this is how Deathsaurus lets things go down. It would explain why he has 11 troops, total and 6 of those are mentally impaired dinosaurs.
Hellbat meekly approaches Deathsaurus and says that he’s joined up because Leozack called him in. Hellbat is all about passing the responsibility on to someone else. So if he screws up, it’s Leozack’s fault for bringing him in. But what was he doing before this? It’s never explained. What WOULD a Transformer do aside from fighting one another?
Hellbat comes bearing a gift. He says he knows where Deathsaurus can get a bunch of energy. Well, that’s all Deathsuarus cares about so good job picking your gift, Hellbat. A subscription to a wine club would have been a poor choice.
Meanwhile, Leozack is watching two of his troops, Killbison and Drillhorn, spar. Or something like that. They’re sort of fighting but kind of the same way angry kittens would fight. No one’s really trying very hard or hurting the other. Also, anyone know where Jallguar is? He’s part of this group, too. No? No one knows. Ok, guess he’s not important this week. Good to know.
Leozack has them take a seat so they can talk about their new team member, Hellbat. Killbison and Drillhorn caution their leader not to trust Hellbat. It’s good advice. Hellbat is only out for himself. These guys picked up on that awfully fast. They reason that Leozack is only keeping Hellbat around for his spying abilities. I guess that’s the case but if so, based on Hellbat’s single, botched spy job, maybe they really don’t need him.
So Deathsaurus calls Leozack in front of him and tells him to attack the energy source that Hellbat told him about – a shuttleport in Nevada. No worries about validating the information or send a whole squad to do this or anything. He just tells Leozack to do it himself. That’s a lot of faith for someone he simultaneously seems to have not much faith in.
Leozack tries to argue that they’ve attacked it twice before and there’s never been any energy to be found. Deathsaurus ignores this and tells him to do it anyway. This episode is all about moving the plot forward, full steam.
Deathsaurus gives him the seemingly arbitrary countdown of 2 hours and 18 minutes and dismisses him. Leozack tells Hellbat that they’ll handle it together, just the two of them. He’s not happy about it.
Leozack tells Hellbat that if he had info like this, he should’ve followed the chain of command and told him first. Hellbat weasels out of that by saying that if Leozack accomplishes the mission, it’ll be a great accomplishment. Yeah, it’d be a great accomplishment no matter what Dumb Dumb.
Oh, and the episode wastes a very brief scene to let us know that Gripper and Braver are guarding an oil tanker. This isn’t relevant to anything. Nothing happens there at all. At. All.
Back at the Autobot’s Shuttle Base, Jean teases Stakeout that with Gripper and Braver guarding the tanker, it’ll be fine. Then he drops a sick burn saying he’d be worried if Stakeout was guarding it. No reason to insult his “friend.” He just flat out calls him useless. It may be true, but it’s not nice. And so…
Stakeout says he can forget getting his help on Jean’s homework. Which sounds reasonable to me. I’m not gonna help someone that insults me for no reason. Jean begs and whines. I guess this is supposed to be funny.
Star Saber calls in from… somewhere? He says things are fine where he is. Great. Why aren’t you with the rest of your army?
Leozack and Hellbat look down at the Nevada shuttleport from a nearby hill. Apparently there’s no long-range security in place of any kind. Leozack voices his doubts but Hellbat insists that there’s a second shuttle full of energy hiding in a hangar and that they started using this base to transport energy after the Decepticons attacked twice before. Leozack says it makes sense that they’d start using it after they attacked because the humans assumed the Decepticons wouldn’t come back. But that doesn’t make sense. How would they know the Decepticons wouldn’t come back a third time? Because that’s exactly what’s actually happening.
How did Hellbat ever learn about this, anyway? We have to assume he did some spying but there isn’t even a token line to that effect. He just claims to know about this and it turns out to be true. The episode wastes time with silly fights and checking in on Autobots doing nothing. Too bad they couldn’t use a moment to show Hellbat spying competently.
We cut to inside a shuttle bay and see that Hellbat must be right. Machtackle and Dashtacker are guarding a shuttle. And in case we still couldn’t put everything together, Dashtacker (AKA Captain Obvious) says that Star Saber told them to defend the space shuttle just to be on the safe side. They love to spell some things out for us as though we’re drooling idiots, but other things they just let the audience guess at.
As the real shuttle full of energy hits the runway, Hellbat and Leozack attack. I’m especially amused at Machtackle’s space shuttle being the same size as a sports car and driving along the ground as part of the defense.
The Autobots try to call back to the base for help but their signal cuts out right away. Stakeout and Jean spend 10 minutes staring at a blank screen.
Machtackle actually tells Dashtacker that the Decepticons are after the energy in the shuttle. Just in case you haven’t figured that part out yet! I wish they stayed on Dashtacker long enough for him to reply. Whatever it was would have been gold.
Leozack’s “plan” is for Hellbat to keep the shuttle on the ground while he finds a way to steal the energy off of it. Not a big plan. Not a clever plan. Doesn’t matter. This episode just wants to keep things moving forward so they can fit in more fights.
Oh, despite Leozack telling Hellbat that the two of them would handle this mission on their own, all of a sudden Killbison just shows up. No reason. He just knew he’d be needed. And one of the Autobots says who he is in case we’ve forgotten. They are really talking down to us this episode.
Back at the Autobot base, Stakeout and Jean have called all the other Autobots in to stare at the blank screen. They’re still not getting any response. Good thing the whole team is there for this.
Fortunately, Star Saber calls in and starts assigning jobs and duties to each of them and they all head out to help. He tells Jean to stay behind in case the Autobots on the oil tanker call in. Guess what? They don’t.
Jean is still super excited that he has a job to do (stand around and do nothing). He brags about it to Stakeout but Stakeout must still be pretty butthurt because he brushes it off. What hilarious friends.
One of the Autobots races in a circle around Killbison while he’s in tank mode. He swivels his turret around, transforms into a robot and falls over due to dizziness. What a terrible job his creator did on programming. There is literally no advantage to making a tank robot get dizzy when he has to track a target.
One of the shuttle pilots takes a moment to let Dashtacker know that the energy is secure on board the shuttle. Still. Dashtacker actually has to tell him to escape. Dude. If he hasn’t run for it yet, it’s probably because he’s scared of all the lasers and giant robots. Maybe you could escort him to safety instead of ordering him to run for it against wide open tarmac.
Just then, Drillhorn punches up from underground and holds Dashtacker up on his feet like they’re in a Cirque de Soleil act. Dashtacker wonders aloud how a “creep” like Drillhorn can be so strong. Maybe it’s because he’s a giant robot?
Leozack is able to climb aboard the shuttle and is really impressed with the load that he sees. It’s a load of energy, by the way. Get your minds out of the gutter, gentle readers.
Leozack worries that the Autobots are making it too difficult to fly the space shuttle away. If only he had planned ahead. Hellbat goofily sticks his head down into the window and suggests he just carries as much as he can. Leozack admits that it is an idea. I guess that is good enough and Leozack decides to use the idea.
Okay, I went too fast. Before Leozack can use the idea, he needs Hellbat to explain how you carry something. Hellbat says they could put the energy in a container and Leozack could carry the container with a chain. While the plan relies on a container and a chain, apparently that isn’t any significant issue. The issue was just coming up with a way to carry it.
Some more Autobots run in to provide backup but they’re instantly pinned down by Killbison and Drillhorn. They can’t fight back because they’re worried about shooting the energy and blowing everything up. I think they speak in some sort of hyperbole like the planet would blow up or something. Or maybe that was last week. Either way, no one cares.
Killbison and Drillhorn gleefully shoot at the Autobots, confident that they won’t shoot back. Still, they don’t bother to make their shots count. They shoot roughly zero Autobots.
Leozack does in fact put energy in a container on a chain. He and Hellbat take off with it and he tells the other two Decepticons to cover them. Since none of these Autobots can fly, it looks like the Decepticons’ simple plan might actually work!
But it can’t be that easy. Star Saber flies in. Leozack orders Hellbat to keep him off his tail. I’m sure that’ll work out great, because the Autobot leader isn’t perfect or anything, is he?
Hellbat decides that since they didn’t steal all the energy, he better help Leozack make the most of it and the best way to do that is to appear to be loyal. Another way of saying it might be, “I’ll try my best.”
Hellbat and Star Saber fly right at each other and Hellbat announces who he is even though they fought last week. Hellbat doesn’t bother to use his hypnosis ray this time even though it almost defeated Star Saber in the previous episode. Star Saber remembers that he’s not completely stupid and simply splits into his jet mode and V-Star flying vehicle. His jet immediately shoots Hellbat down and the V-Star immediately shoots the chain, dropping the energy container.
And his jet mode transforms into a robot, catching the container a few feet above the ground. It doesn’t immediately explode because Star Saber is a good guy.
Leozack doesn’t retreat. He decides to attack Star Saber and make a play for stealing the energy back. Unfortunately, he isn’t listening closely because Star Saber clearly says “eat this” which means he is determined.
Star Saber merges with his V-Star to merge into his powered up robot form before Leozack can slash at him with his spear. Star Saber simultaenously slashes at Leozack with his victory saber. They stand facing opposite directions like samurai. Bright, gaudy, bulky samurai. Oh, and Star Saber hits the mark while Leozack missed. Surprise! Leozack has a slash on his arm so he retreats.
Hellbat pulls himself out of the hole in the ground he created when he impacted. His damage from flying at supersonic speeds straight into the ground? Some scuff marks on his face. If he’s this tough, he should take on Star Saber! But he feels bad because he thinks he’s messed up.
But then he decides that he’ll just blame it on Leozack. How? Subtle implications. That I’d like to see. This show tackling subtlety. I’m not saying they couldn’t do it, but this is a show where someone’s head expands to ten times the normal size when they are surprised by someone’s behavior. It’s never been in the same room or even zipcode as subtlety.
Oh, and then Hellbat falls into his hole for no reason. Even though he knows how to fly.
The Autobots stand around while the shuttle readies itself for launch. The narrator tells us this despite the fact we can see it. The shuttle opts to launch upright this time instead of off of a landing strip. We’re so eager to reach the end, we ignore all of this.
The Autobots stand around making obvious statements to one another. Maybe this is how they clear their RAM.
Dashtacker and Machtackle apologize for delaying the shuttle launch. Even though it doesn’t matter and it wasn’t their fault. Which Star Saber explains to them. He does not smack them in the head.
And then the space shuttle flies directly into the sun so maybe it would’ve been better if the Decepticons stole it after all.