In universe explanation - One Shall Stand, One Shall Fall

Discussion in 'Transformers General Discussion' started by Sol Fury, Jul 18, 2012.

  1. Sol Fury

    Sol Fury The British Butcher Administrator News Staff

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    Here's something I've been kicking around in my head. Since "One shall stand, one shall fall" seems to be becoming the typical mantra before Optimus and Megatron have a fight to the death, I figured I'd try and work out just why, in universe, the words would be so important.

    The way I see it, it's a reference to the fact that in most continuities Megatron started out as a gladiator. The fights we've seen him take part in across various media have always been a case of "two robots enter the arena but only one lives."

    In other words, when they step into the arena, one shall stand (and leave alive) and one shall fall (dead on the arena floor).


    That's where I am seeing it as coming from. It's like a spectator sport thing. The announcer for the gladiatorial match would announce the combatants and then say those words to mark the beginning of the fight.


    So why the in-universe recurrance? Megatron's risen from gladiator to would-be ruler. Perhaps Optimus wants to remind Megatron of his humble roots when they fight, make Megatron mad so he doesn't fight too tactically. Or maybe Optimus says it out of respect for the strength of his enemy.


    That is how I see the use of One shall stand, one shall fall in terms of Megatron and Optimus Prime. It's a form of gladiatorial creed from pre-war Cybertron in my eyes.

    At least, it makes as much sense as repeating it because it's one of the most iconic lines of the 1986 movie :p 
     
  2. Gingerchris

    Gingerchris Telly-headed Tyrant

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    It's an interesting thought. Was Megatron's gladiatorial background established ('State Games' annual story wasn't it?) before the 1986 movie? Not that I'd mind a retconning of the idea.

    Maybe it could also come from when two leaders go into single combat to decide a war/battle rather than risk the lives of all their troops, such as in the episode Heavy Metal War. Not that if one leader fell in the movie it meant the war was over, although the Decepticons did bugger off pretty quickly once Megatron fell. Maybe Starscream was just following the rules of this when he ordered the retreat since the 'One shall stand, one shall fall' announcement had been delivered and we just didn't know it meant that at the time.

    Perhaps it's since lost those rules and now just become a catch-all pre-fight phrase for clashing leaders that essentially says 'With the death of one of us the war will be over (or at least more easily won by who wins this particular one-on-one fight since the other side will become leaderless)'. Perhaps it's now a formality or even just habit to say it with these big leader match-ups rather than a rule which will be followed where one army will be banished if their leader loses.
     
  3. KA

    KA PENIS GOES WHERE?!!

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    I just took it as, all the while the bots n cons play nice but the movie killed some bots so prime didnt take it personal up til then. So its like prime announcing kid gloves are off, this one is to the death.

    Plus, its catchier then 'one shall stand, one shall somewhat fall down but not really'.
     
  4. Gingerchris

    Gingerchris Telly-headed Tyrant

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    'One shall stand and then fall down and shortly after die but come back as a zombie and then get brought back to life properly later, and one shall fall and then get changed into someone else and be okay, if a little crazy'.

    So... 'Both shall fall but ultimately still get back up again later in one form or another'?

    Kinda makes the whole 'One shall stand, one shall fall' thing redundant when you look at it like that.
     
  5. deathsheadII

    deathsheadII Not a Bounty Hunter yes?

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    just an over used quote from the original tf movie nothing more nothing less...has actually made it cringe worthy being used all the time
     
  6. KA

    KA PENIS GOES WHERE?!!

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    Yeah, im trying to imagine how 'give me your face' sounds in 20 years :lol 
     
  7. Autobus Prime

    Autobus Prime Transit Former

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    I like this! By Grapthar's hammer, you've saved the line. It would be cool to see some context added, like you've given it, next time it inevitably gets used.

    G1 Prime wasn't above the combat smack talk, so that fits, and the respect motive fits just as well. Maybe it's even respect for his enemy as a person, and the history of that person...Prime's not a gladiator, but today he fights Megatron's way. This would also be a challenge.
     
  8. KA

    KA PENIS GOES WHERE?!!

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    Grapthars hammer :lol 

    If u wanna go fanfic-y with it, i can see this line from some covenant of primus or summat, where it talks about the ultimate/last autobot standing up to the ultimate warrior/chaos bringer. Then u start tying in stuff like 'light our darkest hour' and 'an autobot shall rise from our ranks' as part of larger myth.

    I just think the gladitorial aspect is kind of left field in the context of the movie, where megs is already established in stature (where being a gladiator, sonebody who fights to survive, would detract from that).
     
  9. Sol Fury

    Sol Fury The British Butcher Administrator News Staff

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    Oh yeah, that's the true reasoning behind it - what I'm trying to think of here is a bit of a fan-made in-universe explanation so it is a bit less cringe-worthy.

    @ Autobus Prime - glad you like it :) 
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2012
  10. Aernaroth

    Aernaroth <b><font color=blue>I voted for Super_Megatron and Veteran

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    In a G1 animated series universe, the quintessons built the cybertronians for entertainment and military purposes, so yeah, a gladiatorial aspect wouldn't be a stretch.

    We also see a number of forms of ritualistic combat in S1 and S2 of the animated series, and it could tie into that.

    If we extend the mythos, it could be another verse from the covenant of Primus, or a famous line by a previous Prime, that Optimus has access to through the matrix.
     
  11. SMOG

    SMOG Vocab-champion ArgueTitan

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    :lol  :lol 

    This is kind of what I was thinking. Transformer cosmology is based on a good/evil binary (Primus/Unicron) and it's quite possible that the term "One shall stand..." has become a sort of solemn holy mantra that lends gravitas to such events (kind of the old "though I walk in the valley of the shadow of death" line from the bible that was for a time so over-used in pop culture).

    The gladiatorial protocol also works, but it doesn't feel like something that Prime would say to rattle his opponent. More likely they are words with profound symbolic meaning for Cybertronians (as they do for fans... though less these days, since they've been abused so often).

    zmog
     
  12. Autovolt 127

    Autovolt 127 Get In The Titan, Prime!

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    I hope we never hear that line ever again......
     
  13. Stardust262

    Stardust262 Moe is the Only Way

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    This line should be saved for an important moment. The next series should only use it for the final battle so it actually feels important and not potentially annoying
     
  14. Russian fan

    Russian fan Proud Autobot Ally TFW2005 Supporter

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    This is very interesting. Knowing that the relationship between Optimus and Megatron are very ambiguous, it may mean that no matter how the past was, Megatron should not rely on the mercy and magnanimity.
    Yes, it's too... Challenge...
     
  15. Superquad7

    Superquad7 We're only human. Super Mod

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    Sol, I think you did a great job thinking this through. Also, I think KA's analysis is on the money as well.

    I also think that the contrast here is that it stems from the fact that Optimus Prime rose to power in a much different way. Regardless if it's the G1 show or some of the comic book continuities, Optimus was a civilian like the other Cybertronians. He was chosen for leadership and to bear the Matrix. He originally saw Megatron from afar off, from a fan's point of view. After the many battles and wars, he's came into his own light. His reminder is, as Sol said, probably out of respect, a remembrance of Megatron's roots, as well as Optimus coming to the end game.
     
  16. OptimusTimelord

    OptimusTimelord Masterpiece Reanimator

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    :lol  Yeah I'm just imagining Prime's voice saying that in the movie before the fight. Somehow I don't think it would have been quite so iconic...!
     

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