Monday, May 18, 2009

Transformers Animated: The Endgame Has Begun

The first part of the two-part Transformers Animated finale (although the actual "finality" of the series hasn't yet been officially announced), "Endgame," aired this past weekend. I think that I'm in agreement with a significant portion of the Transformers fanbase when I say that this has been the most entertaining Transformers series for quite some time, and especially given my general lack of enthusiasm for the movie-related designs, I'm sad to see this series come to an end.

The show has done a remarkable job of giving us snippets of backstory for each of the main characters over the course of the past three seasons (although, in this case, "season" doesn't actually equate to a year's worth of programming, as the series premiered less than a year and a half ago--in fact, the final episode this coming Saturday will air within days of the actual eighteen-month anniversary of the first). It seems that every one of the main protagonists has had their life take an unexpected turn at some point: Ratchet unwittingly gained the access codes to Omega Supreme (which turned the tide of the war, but at a tragic cost), Prowl found himself unable to complete his ninja training due to a confluence of circumstances, and the other three (Bulkhead, Bumblebee, and Optimus Prime) all had aspirations to join the Elite Guard that ended in failure due mostly to reasons outside of their control.

I found myself especially intrigued by the following exchange, in a flashback near the end of "Endgame: Part One":
Prowl: Do you have any idea what it's like to embark on a path, only to find it so completely twisted and turned that you have no idea where you are?
Optimus Prime: Oddly enough, I do.
I've tried to be diplomatic when writing about my own "twists and turns," especially as I try to pursue my vocation in church ministry (I'll refrain from links for now, but long-time readers should have no trouble finding examples), but I'm sure it's no surprise that I've found these to be frustrating from time to time. Although I don't tend to watch Transformers cartoons looking for parallels to my real-life experiences, I found this exchange enlightening. It's not like (most of) the message was a new one. These flashbacks have been woven through the storyline of Transformers Animated since almost the very beginning. But this exchange more implicitly sent the message that, although we may all feel like we're the only one who can understand the particular derailments of our own lives (and indeed, this is true to some degree), we all have experiences that have not gone as we expected them to, and we can find commonality through this.

Fuller is on the eve of what looks to be a major restructuring effort. Indeed, the board of trustees will be approving plans for this restructuring in the next few days. There will likely be a few more "twists and turns"--not only for myself, but for many of the people I'm closest to--in the immediate future. I hope that we can be sources of comfort for each other through whatever is to come.

In the meantime, I look forward to seeing how Transformers Animated plays out, and will miss this particular variation on the Transformers franchise when it's gone.

2 comments:

  1. why wasnt megatron destroyed like all the other series? will there be a new series taking place where this one ended?

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  2. I can't speak to the motives of the writers at Animated, but my guess is that, although this was always intended to be the end of Season 3, the writers wanted to keep things open-ended in case the show was picked up for another season (and, I remind readers, the actual cancellation of Animated is not yet official).

    Obviously, this ambiguity also means that no new series is yet known, although I think that's doubtful.

    In any event, I'm reminded that Megatron/Galvatron wasn't destroyed at the end of the original Generation One cartoon (not in America, in any event), so there's at least some precedent.

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