The amazing Shockwave and Hauler theory!

Discussion in 'Transformers General Discussion' started by Nevermore, Nov 21, 2006.

  1. Nevermore

    Nevermore It's self-perpetuating a parahumanoidarianised!

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    ARGH, wrong forum! Mods, please move!

    A theory I've been working on for a while, with a little bit of input from Monzo:

    Why was Shockwave's characterization so drastically different in the cartoon from both the comic character and what's described in the tech spec?

    The first question we'd have to ask ourselves is: What does the Show Bible say?
    http://transformers.winterchill.com/bible/biblepage44.html

    Sounds quite different from the tech spec, doesn't it?

    http://tfu.info/1985/Decepticon/Shockwave/shockwave.htm

    If we compare any random other show bible description to the tech specs, we're going to find that it's almost a verbatim quote from the tech spec.

    Optimus Prime, show bible:
    http://transformers.winterchill.com/bible/biblepage13.html

    Optimus Prime, tech spec:
    http://tfu.info/1984/Autobot/OptimusPrime/optimusprime.htm

    Cliffjumper, show bible:
    http://transformers.winterchill.com/bible/biblepage25.html

    Cliffjumper, tech spec:
    http://tfu.info/1984/Autobot/Cliffjumper/cliffjumper.htm

    Thundercracker, show bible:
    http://transformers.winterchill.com/bible/biblepage37.html

    Thundercracker, tech spec:
    http://tfu.info/1984/Decepticon/Thundercracker/thundercracker.htm

    I'm going to spare you the rest, but you get the idea.

    Now, the question is: Why the hell is Shockwave so TOTALLY different?

    Shockwave's first appareance was the cartoon pilot! Not bad for someone whose toy wouldn't come out until 1985.

    And this brings us to Hauler.

    In case you don't remember:
    http://s90690880.onlinehome.us/jhiaxus/uscartoon/hauler.htm

    An orange crane truck briefly showed up alongside the Autobots; he was addressed as "Hauler", never spoke a line and never transformed. And he looked a helluvalot like Grapple, a toy that wouldn't come out until 1985.
    http://tfu.info/1985/Autobot/Grapple/grapple.htm

    Hauler was never heard of again (until Takara released an e-Hobby exclusive Constructicon-colored repaint of Grapple called "Road Hauler", that is). Instead, Grapple started showing up in season 2.

    So... what's the story?

    Let's have a look at the Hartmans' old case assortment lists for the 1984 toys.
    http://web.archive.org/web/20020107070426/www.tsarchive.net/resource/caseasst/1984.html

    Take a look at the "Autobot Cars" assortment. Twelve toys in a case. Eleven different toys. Two Mirages.

    Is it possible that the case was originally supposed to contain twelve different toys, one of them being Hauler? Hasbro then decided to shuffle him back into the 1985 lineup, renamed him into "Grapple" and replaced him with a second Mirage?

    Remember, the pilot was originally produced with the possibility that it wouldn't be followed by a full season (hence the "return to Cybertron" stuff at the end that was quickly forgotten about once the first regular episode rolled around). Maybe it was written at a point before the decison to delay the "Hauler" toy for another year was made, and for some unknown reason, Hauler's appearance ended up in the final version?

    Now, this brings us back to Shockwave. Is it possible that he was originally supposed to be a 1984 toy, then got delayed (possible for legal reasons, as the mold was licensed not from Takara, but from a Korean company) and received a rewritten tech spec in the meantime?

    From an interview with Bob Budiansky, we know that communication between Marvel/Budiansky and Griffin-Bacal/Sunbow/the show writers was virtally non-existing.
    http://www.bwtf.com/interviews/bb204.shtml

    As a result, we got stuff like the Dinobots being created on Earth rather than having existed back on Cybertron, and the Matrix (which had been around as a concept since as early as 1984) didn't get used on the show until 1986.

    So, if Shockwave was indeed supposed to have a different character originally, then got rewritten for the 1985 release of his toy, the show writer would have probably either never gotten the memo to begin with, or simply decided to run with the "incorrect" characterization in the same fashion the animators continued to use the incorrect color scheme for Rumble.

    On a sidenote: Did Hasbro decide to release Reflector as a mail order exclusive toy in 1986 because the show writers kept using him despite the "TOY DISCONTINUED: DO NOT USE CHARACTER" note in the show bible?
    http://transformers.winterchill.com/bible/biblepage43.html
     
  2. fschuler

    fschuler Member TFW2005 Supporter

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    IMO, I think you can chalk a lot of this stuff up to the lack of communication between the toy production and show/comic production.

    Thanks for the analysis and all of your hard work, by the way. You are one of a kind for sure, Nevermore.
     
  3. Backscatter

    Backscatter Autobot Brainmaster TFW2005 Supporter

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    Great Theory and also some interesting information. I purchased the eHobby Road Hauler, but still wish he had been painted dark orange like the cartoon Hauler. The comic Shockwave was also so much color than the toon version, that couldn't shoot straight enough to hit the broad side of the Ark.
     
  4. Sol Fury

    Sol Fury The British Butcher Administrator News Staff

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    Very interesting theory. As a kid, I always thought Grapple was Hauler; I saw the orange crane truck and assumed that's who he was. Nice observation with the case assortments too.
    Shockwave I'm not so sure of, I just figured that he was the cartoon guys doing their own thing, but then the animation bible complicates that theory.

    Always love reading your factoids on the old G1 cartoon by the way Nevermore, I always learn something new about the history of TF.
     
  5. KA

    KA PENIS GOES WHERE?!!

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    oookkaaaaaaayyyy.......

    good job internet detective. *files away case*

    seriously, interesting stuff, but the hypothesis is basically, man, coordination was whack in the days before advent of the internet.
     
  6. Nevermore

    Nevermore It's self-perpetuating a parahumanoidarianised!

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    You mean like how Takara's marketing team and the Japanese show writers pretty much disregarded Aaron Archer's ideas for the recent cartoon shows?

    Armada "Thundercracker" anyone?
     
  7. KidDynamite

    KidDynamite don't know nothing Veteran

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    You are a madman. I love it.
     
  8. KA

    KA PENIS GOES WHERE?!!

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    i suspect its a form of OCD.

    good job in filling up idle time tho.

    hey, NM. do that article on less reconized jpn TF artist i suggested in the TF artist thread. makoto had a lot of input there.
     
  9. Grimlock_13

    Grimlock_13 Reformed Geewunner

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    Awesome read, as are all your posts Nevermore!

    Obviously pure speculation here, but in the cartoon Starscream was treacherous and wanted leadership from the start. It could be that they decided to make Shockwave a drone simply because they didn't want TWO characters with the same mindset? I know there were plenty of other Decepticons over the years who wanted leadership (Octane, Scourge, Blitzwing and Astrotrain) but the first one to come to mine if you grew up with the cartoon is Starscream (and probably Shockwave is you grew up with the comics). Just a small theory.

    Good call on Hauler too, I think it's perfectly reasonable to think maybe the Grapple mold was supposed to be released in 84, with Inferno being the remold released in 85. Then, you'd have three remolds in the 85' car line up

    Trailbreaker-Hoist
    Sideswipe-Red Alert
    Grapple-Inferno
     
  10. LigerPrime

    LigerPrime Well-Known Member

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    In the end, the differences probably boiled down to the lack of communication between the comic book writers and the show writers.

    If I remembered correctly, both the Marvel comic and cartoon show wereas originally planned to have 3 issues/episodes each. Whether this was coincidental or not, I have no idea.

    However, sales of both toys and the comics were so overwhelming that Hasbro and Marvel extended both comic and cartoon.
     
  11. ckhtiger

    ckhtiger old skool fool

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    so when was hauler actually "addressed as hauler?" was he referred to in the cartoon by another character, or was it from some outside source, i.e. script, show bible, etc?
     
  12. SMOG

    SMOG Vocab-champion ArgueTitan

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    I think it's the first episode (or the 2nd). One of the autobots drives off a cliff fighting Laserbeak(?). Some others come to rescue him, including Hauler. Once they have the hook line attached, someone yells "Pull him up, Hauler!" or something similar.

    The yellow crane-truck complies, and a generation of kids asks a single question in unison... "Hauler? Who the hell is HAULER??"

    That's how I remember it, anyway. I'm sure anyone who has watched that episode recently could confirm or correct the details. :) 

    smog
     
  13. Shaun_C

    Shaun_C The REAL One True fan Veteran TFW2005 Supporter

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    Consider it confirmed ;) 

    Although to correct, Hound doesn't drive off the cliff. He falls off when Laserbeak struck him with a laser bolt

    And it was the 1st episode not the 2nd :D 

    *Has a weird habbit of being able to memorize certain shows*
     
  14. LigerPrime

    LigerPrime Well-Known Member

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    The incident started when Cliffjumper wanted to gun down Megatron (actually assassinate is the correct term) from afar...Hound who was present, advised him against the action.

    I'm not sure how Cliffjumper miss - probably a bad shot. But the Decepticons were alerted and Lazerbeak was released to hunt down the culprits. It was also the first appearance of the "toy-based" Lazerbeak. The earlier version seen in MTMTE part 1 was a Cybertron type of bird.

    Anyway, Lazerbeak gives chase and Hound and Cliffjumper separates, thinking that Lazerbeak can't follow the both of them. Unfortunately for them, one of Lazerbeak's gimmicks is that his guns can operate/fly on their own.

    So we have Lazerbeak chasing Hound and the "flying gun" after Cliffjumper - which was dispatched with the infamous Glass Gun. Hound wasn't so fortunate and was gunned down and fell down the cliff.

    Anyway, it was "Hauler" who pulled out Hound and it was Cliffjumper who mentioned his name.
     
  15. Omnibus Prime

    Omnibus Prime I'm too old for this shit TFW2005 Supporter

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    A plot device deflected the blast, b/c if he had killed Megatron it would have been an awfully short show and none of us would be here. Or something like that. :p 
     
  16. Crobot91

    Crobot91 Daddy has lots of TFs...

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    Hah, Cliffjumper killing Megs; that would've been funny, yet anti-climatic!
     
  17. KidDynamite

    KidDynamite don't know nothing Veteran

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    Not as funny as the episode where Cliffjumper is the only Autobot who has trouble jumping up the cliff. Now that's comedy.
     
  18. Crobot91

    Crobot91 Daddy has lots of TFs...

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    I could be wrong, but I think that was the episode where Bumblebee can't make the leap and is, subsequently, caught by Wheeljack and pulled up... I dunno, maybe?
     
  19. Nevermore

    Nevermore It's self-perpetuating a parahumanoidarianised!

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    Cliffjumper can't jump up a cliff in "Enter the Nightbird".
     
  20. Shaun_C

    Shaun_C The REAL One True fan Veteran TFW2005 Supporter

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    I believe you'tr thinking about the episode Changing Gears, I know the episode you're talking about. The Autobots were driving throught a heavily forrested area possibly a jungle
     

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