The Life & Times of an Auteur.

Commentary on Pop Culture, and maybe creating some of my own.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Normally, especially since "Transformers Animated" was canceled in favor of "Revenge of Michael Bay's Racist Orgasm Juice," I don't give a crap about what's going on with "Transformers." But, recently, something did happen which I figured I should talk about.

Hasbro has an official Transformers Hall of Fame. Right now there are four members: Optimus Prime, Bumblebee, Megatron, and Starscream. Big surprise there. However, they are allowing fans to vote on the fifth member. They polled the fan sites for a while to get five nominees. Jazz, Grimlock, Soundwave, Shockwave, and Dinobot

Yes, Dinobot from "Beast Wars." This was a surprise, but a very welcome one. Yes, we all know "that guy with the cool voice who shoots tapes out of his chest" will sadly, pathetically, most likely win this. But I'm voting for Dinobot, and I'm going to tell you why anyone who'd be interested in voting in this poll at all should vote for Dinobot.

Jazz: Um... he was voiced by that black guy who Jack Nicholson killed with an axe. Not much to say.
Grimlock: I suppose he presents himself as a positive role model for the mentally deficient. But, he got no development in the cartoon except regression into bigger moron than he started. Then, in the comics, Simon Furman turned him into an autistic Wolverine. Don't get me wrong, I like Grimlock, but no... he's not getting my vote.
Soundwave: Well, we all know he's going to win. But, really, what did he ever do? He had a cool voice and interesting henchmen. That was it. Nothing else to him. He was just there. I like him too, but there's really nothing to him.
Shockwave: Now, this is a tough one, since I like Shockwave. Or rather, I like the Shockwave of the comic books that slaughtered all the Autobots and Decepticons before making Megatron his personal bitch. The cartoon's janitor of Cybertron that can't shoot for shit means nothing to me.

Dinobot: Now, he had something that none of the previously mentioned characters have. Hell, something none of the GeeWun characters ever had... a character arc. He went from renegade Predacon war criminal and terrorist, and developed into a hero and died saving humanity... all the while, he never once apologized for what he was.

"Tell my tale to those who ask. Tell it truly, the ill deeds along with the good, and let me be judged accordingly."

He wasn't a walking catchphrase or a stereotype. He hasn't been replicated in countless reboots of the franchise like everyone else has been. As far as this franchise goes. If I had to make a comparison in the sophistication and level of writing between the two shows, "Beast Wars" is to the original cartoon what "Gargoyles" and "Batman: TAS" are in comparison to "G.I. Joe." and "Thundercats." The difference in quality is that great, and Dinobot was a very well developed character.

Aw well, here was an excellent essay written about why Dinobot is great way back in 2000... a decade old, now I feel old.

And, just remember, a vote for Dinobot is a vote against the blinders of nostalgia.

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