Plot Device Hunt episodes

Discussion in 'Transformers Earthspark and Cartoon Discussion' started by SaberPrime, Nov 18, 2012.

  1. SaberPrime

    SaberPrime Banned

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    I'm only just now listening to the pod cast for Inside Job and Patch. They mentioned how the worst part of Plot Devices is the hunt for them and then mentioned the O Parts from RID which I forgot even existed until they mentioned it. Personally I don't agree with that. I think the worst part of a plot device is when the entire episode is focused entirely on the Plot Device. When a random object of the week has more screen time than every character combined that's when I hate the plot device. I don't mind plot devices when they don't take over the episode.

    That being said the O Parts are a plot device that lasted threw an entire series and the fact that I didn't even remember they existed means they were a good plot device. It's not like in Unicron Trilogy where the Mini-cons/Energon Stars/Cyber Planet Keys were the entire focus of the series. I mean they went to the extent where the plot devices powered up the Transformers where as the O Parts in RID they just find them and then don't use them till they have all the parts collected. So it's not like they were constantly on screen even when they're not actually important to anything going on in the current episode.

    Basically G1, BW, BM, RID, and Animated all had good plot devices. Armada, Energon, Cybertron, and the Live Action Movies all had bad Plot Devices. Prime has had both good and bad depending on what episode you're watching.
     
  2. Puck Hockey

    Puck Hockey Well-Known Member

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    The Unicron trilogy used them to sell toys and was obsessed with them. You knew what you were getting into. Jackie Chan and Xiaolin Showdown are great device hunting shows because their devices are constantly in use while giving the characters enough space to breathe. Prime has next to none in toy form and they were useless at the end. Oh wow, how cool, they actually decided to USE them after a season of rotting in backrooms... to kill Vehicons. Then they're left at Cybertron. That's some Mass Effect cause-and-effect going on there.

    Sorry, but I disagree. I feel that if devices aren't remembered, then why were they there in the first place? I don't believe one should ever strive to make something unmemorable. It's possible to have plot devices and make characters drive the story. If they didn't have enough plot for 26 episodes, don't make 26 episodes. It's better than dragging it out with clip shows and relics. I didn't think the movies had bad plot devices, I just think they were not well-executed (like the rest of the films).
     
  3. Darkscream

    Darkscream Well-Known Member

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    RiD was generally a joke of a show. The reason the plot devices werent memorable, is that the show isnt rememberable. I would not classify these as good plot devices.

    BW & G1 suffered similarly to Prime. Some plot devices were good and others were bad depending on the episode. Each tended to over use a specific type of plot device. G1 overused energon hunting and devices to rule the world, BW overused protoform pods, and Prime overused weaponry. Additionally, the unmentioned TF Animated did the same with the Sari's key and all-spark fragments. Thats not to say I did not enjoy many of the episodes, but all 4 could have mixed it up a bit more.

    The Unicron Trilogy came from the culture that brought us Pokemon, and it shows. These were bad plot devices in that it was always a feeling of "Gotta catch em all!"

    BM was an excellent show, and really the only one that fits your mold about any plot devices used, were not memorable as plot devices, due to being seemlessly sewn into character driven story telling.
     
  4. Starscreamownz

    Starscreamownz Air Commander

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    Actually I'm pretty sure the Decepticons wouldn't have left them there. Don't be surprised if you see the cons using the relics next season.
     
  5. SaberPrime

    SaberPrime Banned

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    Say what? RID is one of the better shows of Transformers. It has it's flaws like the fact that there are way too many characters to keep track of but almost every Transformers series has that problem. The main issue I had with RID is that Optimus and Megatron were the worst leaders EVER. Design wise I like them but as far as the series goes they rarely did anything other than sit back in their respective bases while their soldiers did all the work. Other than that RID was rather enjoyable.

    G1 didn't over use Energon hunting. In G1 Energon was just their fuel and nothing more. The series of the same name over used Energon hunting as that series also made weapons out of the stuff and Energon stars that apparently made characters stronger for a few minutes, and they had a special group of characters who were specially designed to handle Energon, and the main human was the only one who could actually find Energon. That's over use.

    The protoform pods weren't really a plot device. Except Tarantulas did try to build things out of them. But mostly they were just there to introduce new characters.

    Animated did overuse Sari's key, I'll give you that one. TFA Optimus Prime set a bunch of records considering he died in the pilot and was only dead for a few seconds before being brought back to life with Sari's key. No other Optimus died so early in their respective shows or were revived that quickly.

    Wow, welcome to the minority of people who like Beast Machines. Of course one of the episodes was a reuse of a plot device from G1. The Key to Vector Sigma. It's funny you don't like G1 Plot devices but you like Beast Machines when they share the same plot device.
     
  6. Darkscream

    Darkscream Well-Known Member

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    RiD was taken by the producers alot less seriously then any other TF shows. It constantly juxtaposed poor humor at inappropriate times. And as you mentioned, the leaders just sat there barking orders. Even Hasbro admitted, upfront, that they were just putting it on the air as filler until the "new" TF continuity would arrive (now dubbed "unicron trilogy" and deposed by aligned continuity). However opinions are opinions, I think its crap, you dont, c'est la vie.

    G1 fell into 1 of 2 storylines most of the time (not all):
    Megatron: "Soundwave, start filing the energon cubes from this [energy plant of some sort]."
    Optimus: "Autobots, We must stop Megatron."
    or:
    "Megatron: "And with this brilliant plan I will conquer Earth and then Cybertron"
    Optimus: "Autobots, We must stop Megatron."

    It really was too much of the same. However as I said in my prior post, I still enjoyed watching G1.

    As to your point on energon being overused in TF:Energon, yes, thats way beyond G1/BW/TFA/Prime in overusage. As I stated the Unicron Trilogy was really a "Gotta catch em all" type set of series and unlike G1/BW/TFA/Prime, I really couldnt enjoy the Unicron Trilogy due to how it went way beyond over using plot devices.

    BW too consistently had protoform pods falling from the sky and a race to retrieve them. Just like my comment of G1, this is not all episodes, but still enough to start being repetitive much the same as the relic hunting in Prime. And just as I said about G1, i still enjoyed watching BW. In my eyes BW got so much better in the 3rd season when they started to get into the Arc of the G1 transformers, and the storyline got more serialized.

    Nothing really to comment on here, as you basically agreed.

    In BM I mostly enjoyed the serialized plot line, exploration of the mythos, and character driven stories that still did not back seat the action. However your point in regards to the key is somewhat valid. But like I said above, not every plot device was the same, I did enjoy the Key to Vector Sigma storyline in G1 alot, but more for how they used it to discover vector sigma itself, to meet with alpha trion, and to bring new life into the world, rather than the "turn organics to metal" part. And I did feel its repeat use in BM wasnt wonderful, but while on the surface the key was a repeat of how it was used in G1 "turn all organics to metal", it went deeper, as Tankor/Rhinox was using it as a distraction, so he could cleverly manipulate things behind the scenes (ie plot device seemlessly sewn into character driven storytelling). In both cases, the actual key gimic was kinda dumb, but in both cases, the stories around the key were broader and more enjoyable.
     
  7. SaberPrime

    SaberPrime Banned

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    Um... sorry you lost me at juxtaposed. I've never heard that word before but firefox isn't trying to spell correct it for me. I looked it up in the dictionary and it says to show two pictures side by side in comparison. I don't think you're using that word correctly sense there's no "comparison" to be made there but they do often show pictures side by side, mainly whenever a character is speaking in vehicle mode there's an image of their robot mode head on the screen. Frankly I didn't mind that so much. It's not nearly as annoying as the comic book effect in the first Hulk movie. As for the humor... well I don't really see where it's any worse than the humor in any other Transformers series... unless you're talking about Side Burn's obsession with red cars that was a little out there. I didn't mind it but I can see how that might be a little off putting to some people.

    Anyway... RID is way better than any of the Unicron Trilogy. UT actually took several ideas straight from RID. Megatron being repainted as Galvatron except in RID he also gained 4 extra alt modes with that new paint job. Optimus being able to wear his trailer as armor and combine with other characters. RID Optimus has the best combinations and I'm not just saying that because he was the first to do it. Armada just wore his trailer as pants. Energon was a Megazord knock off. Cybertron just gets some giant freaking guns. Hell even the movie version isn't as involved as RID's super mode. Armada Jetfire transforms into pants. Overload just sits on his shoulders as giant freaking guns. Energon Wing Saber is like that 6th ranger's zord that some times combines with the leader's zord in Power Rangers. Omega Supreme doesn't Transform to combine at all he just takes his head off and lets Optimus sit inside him. Leobreaker turns into a arm. And then there's movie Jetfire who has to die in order to combine with Optimus. The only one I can't really complain about is Cybertron Wing Saber though their combined mode doesn't actually have a name. Omega Prime was just freaking awesome. They also took the idea of the strategist who goes insane from RID. It Armada it was Thrust, it RID it was Sky-Byte. The difference, RID actually had an in story reason for why Sky-Byte went insane. Armada Thrust basically went insane for no apparent reason other than it was a really crappy dub and they didn't know what else to do with him.

    I agree with you there. It was kind of repetitive and never really very clear how Megatron planned to do anything. Of course it's an 80's cartoon. Compared to other cartoons of that time it was really good. Compared to cartoons today... well lets just say I wouldn't think as highly of G1 if it were written and animated in the 90's.

    Well that's the level of "over use" a plot device has to get to before I get annoyed with it. I guess you could say G1 Over used Energon but the thing that sets it apart from the series Energon for me is that it was still a character driven series where as Energon the series was entirely driven by Energon rather than characters. I mean seriously the series was named after it's plot device. You can't get any worse than that.

    Well that's kinda the point of this topic. I don't feel like the "race to retrieve" something is a bad way of telling a story. I think finding that thing and then focusing the entire episode on it while ignoring your characters is what makes it bad. Which is why I don't really count the pods as plot devices sense they were actually used to introduce new characters rather than objects that get used threw out the episode. It's character driven rather than focused on a mcguffin.

    BW also had the plot devices that were created by the Vok but again I don't really mind any of them because the stories were always focused on the characters not the random plot device of the week. That's what makes them GOOD plot devices. And BW is my favorite series partly because of how well developed every character got to be. That continued on into Beast Machines which is why I love that series as well.

    The fact that the stories around the key were broader and more enjoyable is why I like the Key to Vector Sigma in both G1 and Beast Machines as a plot device. It was still as you say character driven. I felt that was seriously lacking when they introduced the Key to Vector Sigma in Prime. It was kinda introduced as a magic plot device to bring back Optimus' memories and that was it. The entire focus on it was to reset the status quo. There was no character development in that story arc.

    Anyway... the who Tankor/Rhinox thing is the one thing I didn't like about Beast Machines. I like to think that Tankor gained Rhinox's intelligence but was still acting on Megatron's programming. I don't like the idea that Rhinox just suddenly went evil for no apparent reason. That just seems totally off base from his character in Beast Wars.
     
  8. Gordon_4

    Gordon_4 The Big Engine

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    Hey, at least RiD's human wasn't functionally ******ed (that was Sideburn's job), a cardboard cutout or boring.

    And you lost me. RiD brought me Scourge, Sky-Byte, made Ultra Magnus in to a total fucking badass and the much maligned O-Parts at least gave an awesome pay off: Fortress Maximus.

    RiD was funny and knew how to have a joke, even if some of them fell flat.