Unpopular opinion: Unicron shouldn’t have been a Transformer in the '86 movie

Discussion in 'Transformers General Discussion' started by HAL237, Apr 9, 2021.

  1. HAL237

    HAL237 Well-Known Member

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    Before you grab the torches and pitchforks, just hear me out. I love Unicron’s robot design in the '86 movie, and the scene where he transforms after Galvatron threatens him is among my all-time favorite sequences in an animated film. But I can’t help but feel the fact that Unicron, as it turns out, is a Transformer himself makes him a little less special and unique?

    I love how Unicron is depicted as this all-seeing, Lovecraftian threat throughout the film. A giant mechanical planet with the booming voice of Orson Welles is such an unconventional yet fascinating villain, and the fact that he’s essentially invincible, unstoppable, and has the ability to consume entire worlds makes him even more terrifying. Which makes it a little disappointing to me that he turns out to be a Transformer, like 99% of the rest of the cast. The fact that he’s a Transformer doesn’t really affect the plot of the film, and the conclusion would’ve largely panned out the same, had he just had been a sentient, god-like planet.
     
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  2. agent j 15

    agent j 15 My Girlfriend's Husband Fights For Your Freedom

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    I'm poised to agree - with the caveat that I do also like that the literal Hellworld can open up into a person and literally bite into planets like they're apples, and that I am a very inconsistent person who likes both those ideas simultaneously.

    On the one hand, it's an iconic scene and part of the character that he can turn into the biggest robot. On the other hand, Unicron is supposed to be this evil so powerful and ultimate that he can warp reality to his will. Me personally, I've always viewed Unicron more like I view the Devil, the Yin to Primus's Yang, the embodiment of all negative forces in reality. Wickedness, temptation, death, entropy, the darkness that light cannot exist without.

    But that's not even discussing the thing that, personally, I think is VERY underutilized concept with Unicron, and that's that he's an actual goddamn planet, and a planet with a connected superstructure ring. So you get a planet that is just a body for the embodiment of all evil - what sort of horrors lie on that worlds surface? Imagine a group crashing on that planet with no way off, and there is literally NO escape from a planet that is made of evil, a planet controlled by an entity that wants to feeds on you and make you suffer in ways you can't even possibly imagine.

    And when you look at him that way, the Hellworld opening up into a big spiky man with a beard is pretty goddamn silly.

    I think it's utterly dependent on the story that he's in. For the original movie, it's fine that he becomes The Guy. Transformers Prime has their version of Unicron with his own limitation, but I like the workaround they give him to having a "robot" mode. I haven't read the IDW comics take on him yet but I'm eager to see what they do. But yeah - if it's made for younger crowds or it's not so focused on making Unicron horrific than the robot is fine. But if they were to reboot the movies into something that's more serious and grounded in reality (as much as that's possible) and they eventually get around to Unicron, I'd prefer if they don't have him become the robot. Maybe show it in a vision or some clever workaround, but I think the image of Hell: The Planet and it's gaping maw unfolding into what is very clearly a humanoid shape, I'd probably be more confused than terrified.

    Though I always had it in my headcanon that he transformed in the '86 movie to coax his brother Primus into doing the same. Yes I know G1 Primus doesn't do that, I don't care, I want to see them both turn into guys and just punch their pent up rage and aggression at each other
     
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  3. hthrun

    hthrun Show accuracy's overrated

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    If a giant, sentient planet in the Transformers movie didn't transform, I'd have been really disappointed.
     
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  4. Warpshard

    Warpshard Well-Known Member

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    I do think that's one of the dumb things about Transformers that really endears me to it; basically everything can transform in some capacity, even when it doesn't really need to. The people transform, the animals transform, the vehicles can transform, the weapons and armor can transform, the buildings and cities transform, the freaking planet can transform.
     
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  5. Alph

    Alph Well-Known Member

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    I can't imagine any scenario in which I would have enjoyed the climax more if Unicron hadn't turned into a giant robot.
     
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  6. Revoticus

    Revoticus Big Combaticon fan

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    I can get behind this, not making Unicron a transformer helps distance him from the Cybertronians and gives of an otherworldly feeling to the character.

    I like the idea of separating Unicron from the Transformers origin so not making him a transformer himself appeals to me. But I can see why this won't fly because then you can't sell Unicron toys that don't transform(unless it is a bust).

    Plus I like seeing a big orange/yellow planet with mandibles chow down on another planet or moon.
     
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  7. PrimeSmokescreen 04

    PrimeSmokescreen 04 Well-Known Member

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    I agree, his robot mode felt like almost an afterthought to me as a kid. And I found him FAR less intimidating when he just became a humanoid robot shooting lazers out of his eyes and getting his ass cheeks kicked in by the dinobots.
     
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  8. Pravus Prime

    Pravus Prime Wields Mjolnir!

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    Yet, with all the changes this movie went through, that was one of the original concepts that stuck; originally Optimus Prime was going to transform Cybertron to battle Unicron for the climax. Before the decision to completely change the plot and kill off Optimus.
     
  9. LockdownTF

    LockdownTF Well-Known Member

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    the thing that got me was there seemed to be allot of worlds in the transformers galaxy that either have robot populations or are in fact some type of transformer themselves even making the same noise when they transform. I thought Cybertron being a planet populated by a race of shapeshifting robots would be fairly unique but there seems to be several or possibly dozens of planets with similar robotic life.
     
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  10. CaioSilvatheScreamerFan

    CaioSilvatheScreamerFan Destron New Leader

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    Actually it does, in Planet mode he can consume and destroy much more quickly as seen in the start of the film, yet at the end of the film in robot mode he takes his sweet time destroying Cybertron so the heroes actually have a chance to win
     
  11. Gunslinger99

    Gunslinger99 Well-Known Member

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    We never would have gotten Unicron telling Galvatron that he was going to witness it's dismemberment.
     
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  12. Alph

    Alph Well-Known Member

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    Or that scene of Hot Rod flying into Unicron's eye with Stan Bush blasting in the background.
     
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  13. CyberstormSM

    CyberstormSM Turbo-Revvin' Young Punk

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    Interesting. Do you have a source for this?
     
  14. volatus

    volatus Aristocratic Airborne Decepticon

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    I wonder how G1 Transformers as a media would have panned out if at some point the motivation stopped being "to sell toys" and they told the creative people "just make some awesome shit and the toys will sell themselves"

    Complete with a total lack of mouth movements since it was an afterthought!

    Personally my take on all this is that Unicron is no less terrifying after he transforms, although he appears to be demonstrably less capable. His robot mode seems to be a shock-and-awe vanity mode, not really great at combat. It probably burns a few Lithones worth of energy to transform it and engage in a 10 minute battle, too, so it doesn't seem terribly sustainable.

    Wouldn't he be better off just tractor beaming every loose object off Cybertron?

    Let's not forget Unicron's signature move:

    Eat the only object in the universe that can kill you.
     
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  15. CaioSilvatheScreamerFan

    CaioSilvatheScreamerFan Destron New Leader

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    That should be a thread in of itself
     
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  16. Pravus Prime

    Pravus Prime Wields Mjolnir!

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    Flint Dille has talked about it often as a story idea, I'm fairly certain you can find it in some interview either on YouTube or perhaps even on the 35th Anniversary DVD, but if you want something more concrete, The Secret of Cybertron - Transformers Wiki
     
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  17. TheSoundwave

    TheSoundwave Well-Known Member

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    Honestly, I'm the inverse. I enjoy Unicron just being a really big Transformer who basically turns into the Death Star. What I take problem with is the concept of him being some sort of Lovecraftian godlike being whose very existence created the universe or whatever. Same with Darth Vader being some sort of prophesied "chosen one", or The Doctor from Doctor Who being the first Time Lord. Not every character has to be some ultimate special being. Sometimes characters can just be some dude. I actually like the idea of a Transformers villain being a Lovecraftian force, but to me Unicron isn't that.
     
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  18. Revoticus

    Revoticus Big Combaticon fan

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    Yeah I prefer takes on Unicron where he is just a big monster whose goal is to eat things to survive. So... Only in the Sunbow cartoon...

    I tend to not like when a franchise starts to make it so that their cast of characters are tied to the beginning of the universe or have this important fate they need to fulfill, especially in a science fiction setting( even though Transformers always had light sci-fi content in them).

    Unless of course they make it interesting or clever.
     
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  19. Shady boi

    Shady boi Face Taking Enthusiast

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    To me unicron is just a fat fuck that is Lovecraftian in nature
     
  20. PrimeSmokescreen 04

    PrimeSmokescreen 04 Well-Known Member

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    Interesting...