Last night my wife & I plugged in the final episode of RID. And if it’s true that Cyberverse is a new show unrelated to this one, then this also brings to a close our viewing of the so-called “aligned continuity.” We both enjoyed the show throughout its entire run, and I enjoy doing these little “wrap-ups” after finishing a long running series. First off, I couldn’t help but notice throughout the entire run of the show, that they kept referencing old pulp style or golden age monster movies. I think the first major obvious one came in “Even Robots Have Nightmares”, when Russell is watching a horror movie with Grimlock, Strongarm & Sideswipe. But then the show goes one further & doesn’t just reference some non-existent monster movie, it actually has the bots pretending to be monsters or victims. This happens again in the final season episode “Collateral Damage,” when Sideswipe & the Bots again dress up like monsters to re-enact horror movies for Russell’s entertainment after ‘Swipe accidentally steps on their tv. Steeljaw as the main recurring villain is akin to a werewolf & many of the other Decepticons are portrayed as monsters too. Vertebreak is a literal mad scientist that decapitates people and steals their bodies! That’s just horrifying. But all this got me thinking that RID isn’t just showing a fondness for old monster movies like Brendan Frasier’s The Mummy or older stuff like Creature From the Black Lagoon. It’s actually equating itself to those kinds of movies & telling the audience that it’s going to take us on a similar adventure. There will be some high stakes, but no one ever really gets hurt. They can come up with pseudo high-tech solutions to whatever’s going on one moment & in the next, Sideswipe can disguise himself with mud & sticks. Bumblebee can stress about finding his groove as a leader & pushing his team too hard in one episode & then rock out on-stage with his favorite metal band in the next. So that’s my first observation: everyone upset that RID isn’t as dark as TFP (both in terms of content & actual use of color palette) should approach this show in the same mindset as they would a cheesy, serial monster movie. It’s corny, no one’s ever really scared by watching it or even expecting to be scared, but it’s FUN & entertaining & has enough meat on its bones, that you could take something more away from it if you look deep. That’s all more general, vague stuff, so now it’s time for some specific thoughts on various things: I love the design of the Stunticons, but I don’t like any of their personalities. Every time they opened their mouths with their 1940s mobster wannabe accents, I just kept thinking of how much more I liked the G1 Stunticons. Their speech mannerisms killed it for me every time. And omg, Wildbreak??? WILD-break? Should’ve been called MILD-break. The originals would be ashamed of these guys. I love this version of Grimlock, but feel like he was the writer’s punching bag. He took more punishment than anyone & was thrown around with ease by nearly everyone. It’s like they forgot that this guy was huge, & the muscle of the team. The instance when he was shown really hammering the bad guys felt rare, but it was always a treat when it happened. I still love that Grimlock took on Megatronus single-handedly with none of the Bee team’s magic armor or weapons. Just his fists! That’s all he needs! I have never especially cared for Bumblebee in any version of TFs, but RID Bee is easily one of my favorite characters. He’s often overwhelmed by all the things going on & trying to manage 10 things at once, somehow making it work, but he almost always manages to keep a cool head & sense of humor about it all. He’s not some generic lawman either- he does hold strong beliefs about the role of the Autobots in the universe & such. He has no problem telling Steeljaw in the final 2-parter why Decepticon governments are a joke, for example. He may be the same Bee from TFP, but I prefer this guy a 100 times more than his TFP self. It did get ridiculously frequent how they would always arrive at an area & have to make some comment about how the humans were all evacuated or whole facilities were fully automated. Some of my more favorite moments were when they had to actually interact with humans like the tin-foil hat conspiracy theorist guy in the desert. While the world of RID was definitely more populated than TFP, I would’ve liked to have seen even more human presence. Nothing wrong with blowing up some tanks as long as you show the people crawling out of the wreckage & feeling to safety, right? Where did all these automated tanks come from??? Hm, feels like I’m just listing off gripes. Well, I loved the designs on most every robot in this show. Really love the RID aesthetic. Sad that it’s going away. They proved that they could do the robo animal look & a more standard robot look & it worked great for both. Love how colorful this show was. It did feel like the show was running out of budget, when every character model started to get reused. At that point I just kept wishing for the original characters to reapper. An episode with 3 or 4 crow Bots, but no Filch?! Come on! I was hoping to hear her say something more than “shiny!” All in all, the show is much like its main cast: flawed, but well-meaning & still likable. Of the 3 series’ finales in the Aligned Continuity, I feel that RID had the strongest. RB’s was a complete letdown that seemed to miss the point of the entire show. TFP’s was good, but didn’t offer much beyond the usual epic battle trope. RID’s ending, on the other hand, had a much more hopeful finale & a satisfying conflict leading up to the final minutes of the show. I can see all kind of places the story can go afterwards, whereas with TFP I was like, “well- I guess that was it.” Ah, I just love this show. I like where it ended. Had a lot fun with it, and that’s how it should be. I feel like I could ramble on some more, but that’s the gist of it.