Useless Ark and Nemesis Crews

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Useless Ark and Nemesis Crews

Post by The Last Autobot » Tue Aug 31, 2004 5:46 pm

So Optimus needed a bunch of autobots to clear a path through an asteroid belt and there was -also- the distinct possibility they could be ambushed and killed in the process. He needed strong warriors and firepower to get the job done. So why bring Bumblebee, Cliffjumper??? Important autobots, but who would be more useful for other duties and not to play "Asteroid". We certainly know there were a lot of autobots warriors at the time to pick with more "intelligence". On the other hand, I think this crew fits greatly with the series (If you go to another planet or to explore, you need a wider variety of scientists, technicians, scouts).

In the case of Megatron, he was going to ambush Optimus -his greater enemy- and he went with Rumble and Frenzy??? I would have taken Bludgeon at least. And he had no excuse, Megatron had at that time a very effective army and resources.

So what you think?
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Post by Best First » Tue Aug 31, 2004 5:53 pm

i think i agree entirely. The reasons for going into Space are hokey as hell.
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Post by Hound » Tue Aug 31, 2004 6:01 pm

Maybe it was an inspired idea for Optimus to take such a varied crew.

Maybe he had planned this incase something went desperately wrong.

Ok, maybe the likes of Cliffjumper, Gears, Windcharger etc are not 'big hitters' but they all bring something unique to the team.

Cliffjumper is fast, he has a potentially devastating weapon in glass gas. Huffer is one of the strongest autobots and an engineering wizz. Windcharger has his electromagnetic power. Gears has his infared and his Duck. Bumblebee can outlast all the autobots in terms of fuel efficiency and he is their top spy (impressive for a bright yellow autobot).

The cons have no such excuse however, their mission was to obliterate the autobots, yet they left their most impressive warriors behind. The orginal crew are classic characters, but you couldnt really say that the likes of Soundwave, Laserbeak, Thundercracker and Reflector were very menacing...
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Post by Stormwolf » Tue Aug 31, 2004 6:16 pm

Soundwave would have pretty usefull, he could maintain communictions in battle and could possibly signal the Nemesis, he's got super strenght in addition to that (as seen in Powerplay).

Rumble and Frenzy would do pretty good as living shields for Megatron :p
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Post by Hound » Tue Aug 31, 2004 6:20 pm

yeah, im not disputing that, Soundwave is surely Megatron's most invaluable assett, for his loyalty as much as anything else.

I guess my point is, as a group of warriors, they were solely lacking.
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Post by Stormwolf » Tue Aug 31, 2004 6:26 pm

Hound wrote:yeah, im not disputing that, Soundwave is surely Megatron's most invaluable assett, for his loyalty as much as anything else.

I guess my point is, as a group of warriors, they were solely lacking.


Yeah, especially when you consider that they are vastly outnumbered :idea:
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Post by Optimus Prime Rib » Tue Aug 31, 2004 6:26 pm

Why did Prime even go in the first place? They were in the middle of a war and he decides to go blow up a piece of rock?

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Post by snarl » Tue Aug 31, 2004 6:49 pm

Hmm, I tend to retcon a lot of the early stuff, seeing as it was done before the whole franchise became a phenomenon.

IMO, There were ****loads more cons - the crash just mashed loads of them up to the point where rebuilding was impossible. They just picked whoever, seeing as it was a question of numbers.

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Post by The Last Autobot » Tue Aug 31, 2004 7:22 pm

Hound wrote:Bumblebee can outlast all the autobots in terms of fuel efficiency and he is their top spy (impressive for a bright yellow autobot).



Yep, he could have spied a big rock and find something useful of it :eyebrow: I dont doubt Bumblebee and the rest are useful. I doubt their usefulness in THIS specific situation. Ditto for many of the decepticons.
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Post by spiderfrommars » Tue Aug 31, 2004 7:30 pm

snarl wrote:
IMO, There were ****loads more cons - the crash just mashed loads of them up to the point where rebuilding was impossible.


I go with this theory. Issue 1 shows loads of 'cons pouring into the Ark. I reckon the crash wiped swathes of them out.
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Post by Impactor returns 2.0 » Tue Aug 31, 2004 8:59 pm

does T1 just reformat autobots and cons on importance/rank value?

Maybe theres so lil left it gets the brain mem's stores em on a floppy and uses the available junk to make as many bots as possible.

at the same time it forgets decepticons are bad and makes an equal amount of them to.. malfucntion of plot or T1...
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Post by Bouncelot » Tue Aug 31, 2004 11:20 pm

spiderfrommars wrote:
snarl wrote:
IMO, There were ****loads more cons - the crash just mashed loads of them up to the point where rebuilding was impossible.


I go with this theory. Issue 1 shows loads of 'cons pouring into the Ark. I reckon the crash wiped swathes of them out.


I reckon that there were loads more bots as well - so many of the bots we see on the Ark before the crash in #1 don't look like anyone who got revived. All of which makes the strange choices for the mission less of a problem. Now if only we could reconcile this with how Ratchet was out of spare parts by "Rock and Roll Out"...

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Post by Best First » Wed Sep 01, 2004 8:30 am

you would think we would have seen more grief from the 'bots if they had lost that many allies...
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Post by Bouncelot » Wed Sep 01, 2004 12:28 pm

Best First wrote:you would think we would have seen more grief from the 'bots if they had lost that many allies...


Why? They didn't seem fazed by Autobots dying in any other story, apart from when it was Prime or Xaaron.

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Post by Guest » Wed Sep 01, 2004 4:55 pm

Bouncelot wrote:
Best First wrote:you would think we would have seen more grief from the 'bots if they had lost that many allies...


Why? They didn't seem fazed by Autobots dying in any other story, apart from when it was Prime or Xaaron.


You mean Prime's crew selection was based primarily on how cold-hearted they'd need to be?

Bumblebee: What an unfeeling ****!

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Post by Kup_1 » Wed Sep 01, 2004 6:38 pm

Well, maybe it was someting as simple as:

Theres a war going on. These were the only bots who were not already on some kind of mission?

I dunno
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Post by Optimus Prime Rib » Wed Sep 01, 2004 7:08 pm

Prime, Prowl, and Jazz all had nothing better to do?

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Post by Autobloke » Mon Mar 28, 2005 10:48 pm

The Ark was launched to clear a route through an asteroid belt because the force of war had knocked Cybertron out of orbit (that's some war, eh?) and it would have been destroyed by the big-ass rocks. The asteroid belt was hinted to be the one that rings our solar system, so at least that brings the Ark and Nemisis close to Earth.
As for the diversity of the crew, you need weapons experts for the shooting, engineers for the care of those weapons, scientists for the fact it's in space (and as Star Trek has shown us: '**** Happens'). Bumblebee looked up to the bigger 'bots, so it's likely he bugged Prime until he let him come along. Windcharger could have been useful 'cos there are ores in most spacerock. Ratchet came along because surely each mission requires a medic. Then there's also the fact that a lot of the officers were blatantly Prime's buddies, and he wanted to bring his arsekissers with him wherever he goes. Considering the spacy/fighty nature of the mission, you could doubtless find a reason (however tenuous) for each Auto to be on board.

The Decepticons? Well, as was said, Soundwave would be useful for communications (tho I'm sure they had OTHER real radios) and is kinda a high-ranker. Of course, where the 'Wave goes, his cassettes always follow. The seekers: well, if the cartoon is to be believed, there are loads of them - Thundercracker and Skywarp were probably just unlucky enough to be around when the ship was due to go up. Starscream is a high-ranker too, and Megatron probably didn't trust him alone on Cybertron during his absence.

This is all subjective though, and I'm sure that there were other 'bots on both sides that just didn't survive. If both crews were large enough, then perhaps most of them were more warlike, but the ones who didn't die were all hiding out in the command deck because they weren't run-of-the-mill cannonfodder grunts (they either had command status or abilities that meant they were needed on the flight deck - perhaps Sideswipe and Sunstreaker etc were flight deck security with Ironhide), and by the time the Decepts got up there, Prime had decided to ditch the Ark which meant, by extention that his pals were less damaged before the ship went down, unlike the poor soldiers that were terminated (Autobot AND Decepticon) during the battle to take the command deck.

Phew! Well, that's what I reckon.
I'm knackered now.

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Post by Bouncelot » Tue Mar 29, 2005 12:45 am

Autobloke wrote:The Ark was launched to clear a route through an asteroid belt because the force of war had knocked Cybertron out of orbit (that's some war, eh?) and it would have been destroyed by the big-ass rocks. The asteroid belt was hinted to be the one that rings our solar system, so at least that brings the Ark and Nemisis close to Earth.
As for the diversity of the crew, you need weapons experts for the shooting, engineers for the care of those weapons, scientists for the fact it's in space (and as Star Trek has shown us: '**** Happens'). Bumblebee looked up to the bigger 'bots, so it's likely he bugged Prime until he let him come along. Windcharger could have been useful 'cos there are ores in most spacerock. Ratchet came along because surely each mission requires a medic. Then there's also the fact that a lot of the officers were blatantly Prime's buddies, and he wanted to bring his arsekissers with him wherever he goes. Considering the spacy/fighty nature of the mission, you could doubtless find a reason (however tenuous) for each Auto to be on board.

The Decepticons? Well, as was said, Soundwave would be useful for communications (tho I'm sure they had OTHER real radios) and is kinda a high-ranker. Of course, where the 'Wave goes, his cassettes always follow. The seekers: well, if the cartoon is to be believed, there are loads of them - Thundercracker and Skywarp were probably just unlucky enough to be around when the ship was due to go up. Starscream is a high-ranker too, and Megatron probably didn't trust him alone on Cybertron during his absence.

This is all subjective though, and I'm sure that there were other 'bots on both sides that just didn't survive. If both crews were large enough, then perhaps most of them were more warlike, but the ones who didn't die were all hiding out in the command deck because they weren't run-of-the-mill cannonfodder grunts (they either had command status or abilities that meant they were needed on the flight deck - perhaps Sideswipe and Sunstreaker etc were flight deck security with Ironhide), and by the time the Decepts got up there, Prime had decided to ditch the Ark which meant, by extention that his pals were less damaged before the ship went down, unlike the poor soldiers that were terminated (Autobot AND Decepticon) during the battle to take the command deck.

Phew! Well, that's what I reckon.
I'm knackered now.


That's more-or-less my take on it as well. The crews were a lot bigger than those who survived. I mean we see an awful lot of generic background TFs in the Ark battle scenes who are never seen again. Presumably the ones who were revived were the only ones whose bodies were in good enough condition to be revived after the battle, the crash, and 4 million years worth of decay. Though I still can't think why Brawn would be useful - the guy's a hand-to-hand fighter and in space you don't exactly need huge strength levels to lug equipment around. The only problem with this theory about there being loads more TFs who didn't make it is that Ratchet's running short of spare parts by Rock and Roll Out (UK #53 / US #13). But maybe some of the essential parts just weren't compatible.

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Post by Autobloke » Tue Mar 29, 2005 6:18 pm

Bouncelot wrote: Though I still can't think why Brawn would be useful - the guy's a hand-to-hand fighter and in space you don't exactly need huge strength levels to lug equipment around.


Hell, if I suspected that the Decepts might attack, I'D like a strong chunk of steel to hide behind when they board the ship.

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Post by Legion » Wed Mar 30, 2005 2:59 pm

Autobloke wrote:Then there's also the fact that a lot of the officers were blatantly Prime's buddies, and he wanted to bring his arsekissers with him wherever he goes.


Makes perfect sense to me... after all, prime is something of a ****.

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Post by Autobloke » Wed Mar 30, 2005 7:02 pm

Y'know, despite being a fan favourite, Prime's actually rather a bland character. I'd put it down to being a good guy (the villians are normally the best developed characters), but most of the other Autos were proper personalities. The fact that Prime's the standard 'hero/leader' has robbed him of any interesting traits. Read his tech specs and you won't find any proper personal information - just "values life. Blah blah. Protects the innocent. Blah blah." - that kind of thing. No wonder he's become more dull with each cartoon series - there's nothing to build on.

If I'd been an Autobot being asked to join the Ark mission four million years ago, I'd have turned it down 'cos Prime was going. I'd have rather stayed on Cybertron with Magnus or Fort Max (until he asked me to give some head to the Nebulans - so to speak).

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Post by Hound » Wed Mar 30, 2005 7:52 pm

I disagree, Furman wrote a fantastic Prime. Goes far beyond your generic leader types.
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Post by Autobloke » Wed Mar 30, 2005 8:13 pm

Yeah, but have we ever really found out anything interesting about Prime? At most, Furman just wrote interesting Prime stories - being in an interesting story doesn't make you an interesting person. I dread to say this, but Dreamwave (shudder) at least gave Prime a bit of personality in War Within when he was a data-sorting guy that preferred abandoning the planet rather than saving it. Of course, the moment he got the Matrix he became 'Hero Guy', gave up on his original plan and became generic. He was all 'save the planet'.
Look at Mirage, with his rich playboy past. Or Bluestreak's inner torment at his home city's destruction. Surely that's what we'd like to know about Prime. I have to admit that I could be wrong, but I can't really remember any bits of background information like this cropping up in the comics or cartoon.

I can tell I'm gonna get blazed for this opinion (I do like Prime - but I don't know exactly why), but what the hell - it'll be a good topic of discussion. I WANT to be proved wrong.

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Post by Bouncelot » Wed Mar 30, 2005 9:10 pm

Let's see. Prime's backstory according to Marvel:

Well, he started off as a trainee medic who was head of Iacon's athletic (read: gladatorial) team. When the war broke out, he enlisted in the army and rose through the ranks to become a senior officer. Emirate Xaaron then arranged for him to be given supreme command. Prime also had this dream of reuniting the Autobots and Decepticons someday. So definitely a more worked out background than in Dreamwave's continuity.

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Post by Autobloke » Wed Mar 30, 2005 9:18 pm

I suppose.
But apart from the medic and athlete thing (which no longer apply 'cos he's now just a leader), the others are more events that say he 'became leader' and not really personality (yes, I know I asked for backstory). And 'uniting Autobots and Decepticons' is surely the dream of ALL Autobots, and not exactly a personality trait either. I dream of many things, but they aren't what I am.
Still not convinced, but thanks for the backstory reminder - I'd forgotten all that in those darn mists of time.

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Post by Shanti418 » Wed Mar 30, 2005 9:40 pm

You know, I actually think Autobloke's got a point to some extent.

No question Prime's TFU entry makes him out to be a bland "great leader" with the protection of the innocent, and the weakness of caring for life, yada yada yada.

Additionally, I think most of us can agree that in Bob's hands, this was still basically the case, best exemplified in his infamous reasons for suicide in US #24.

As far as Furman's Prime goes, there's no question that he was more of a conflicted character. However, I don't think his conflicts and the major occurances, like the whole "saving Megatron for Ratchet" thing are exactly ground breaking. They're well written and they rock, though. And he gets all the juicy spiritual Matrix material, and the powermaster tummyache (Hold on, old friend! Give me your strength for just a bit more!). Which is cool, but again, tried and true storylines.

We've discussed before how and why the TF world is unique in sci fi. However, when it comes to Optimus, I think the best compliment is that he's archetypal, not steretypical.

But back to the original subject:

Here's why those Autobots got in the ark: They were the only Transformers Hasbro had.

They didn't know we'd be sitting here twenty years later telling them that Megs should have taken Bludgeon, or that a second tier commander like Magnus could have cleared out the asteroids.

To these poor souls, someone like Magnus even existing was spoke of only in legend. Yes, they had mastered the art of repainting minibots and seekers, but Optimus Prime? It would take many months of painstaking research and development to harness the technology required to repaint Optimus Prime.

If only they could look into the future and see our discussion thread, and bear witness to the beast they have created. If they were able to talk to us now, they'd probably ask us to buy them a book of sport results for the last 20 years, which would then promptly be stolen by Biff Tannen.

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Post by Bouncelot » Wed Mar 30, 2005 9:43 pm

So you're after character rather than backstory. Here's a post I wrote about a week ago concerning Prime's character which is born out by a myriad of Marvel Stories most notably in Crisis of Command, Prey, and the stories leading up to Surrender:

Being a legendary leader doesn't necessarily mean that you live up to the legend. Prime's an idealist, and his idealism often comes into conflict with reality. He's also the only person who's aware of his faults. Because of his legendary status, there are very few people who might criticise him, so of course he becomes his own worst critic.


And you say he has no depth compared to other characters. :roll:

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Post by spiderfrommars » Wed Mar 30, 2005 10:25 pm

Hate to big up myself (well, actually I don't) but in the review below I could have gone on endlessly in the 'remarks' and 'character development' sections about Prime's character (and almost did).

http://www.transfans.net/comics_guide_d ... 112&page=5

Thats in just ONE issue!

Prime's tech specs are typical fluff. Budiansky wrote him pretty predictably (only a couple of stand out character moments: the Shockwave/matrix arc and the Underbase saga).

Furman made him tortured, uncertain and yet resolute. It's borne out most tellingly in the Unicron saga, but 'Prey' and G2 are further stand out moments. And kudos also to the Collins/Hill writing team who were the first to explore all this in Crisis of Command.

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Post by Shanti418 » Thu Mar 31, 2005 12:32 am

I'm not saying he's not tortured. I'm not saying he doesn't have moral complexities. I'm not saying he's not a fully fleshed out character. I'm just saying he's an archetype, just like the "right of expansion/conquest" supervillan characterization of Megatron is an archetype.

And that issue with Outback seemed like a ST:TNG episdoe.

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