Why The Hate on Humans?

Discussion in 'Transformers Movie Discussion' started by agent j 15, Nov 23, 2016.

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What are your thoughts on human characters?

  1. Love them!

    4 vote(s)
    9.8%
  2. They're okay.

    14 vote(s)
    34.1%
  3. Don't care for them (neutral)

    11 vote(s)
    26.8%
  4. Hate them.

    3 vote(s)
    7.3%
  5. WE WILL KILL THEM ALL.

    9 vote(s)
    22.0%
  1. agent j 15

    agent j 15 poopity-scoop

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    Side note - this is my first time making a thread in the updated system and it's SOOOOOOO nice. If there's any mods in the thread nice work - being able to watch my thread and get emails about it is a nice touch.

    So back to the main idea - among the fandom, I've noticed dislike, growing into contempt, for any human characters in a Transformers movie. They hate that they take away screen time from the robots, they hate how flat they usually are, they hate that they don't do anything... and these are valid(ish) complaints. The current human characters in the films are, for the most part, pretty boring. But I think there's a reason for that.

    They are so far removed from the coolest thing about the movies - that is, the robots.

    Think about it - the only human with a real close connection to a Transformer until AOE was Sam and Bumblebee, and personally that was my favorite part about them both (I also disliked Sam and fucking despise Bumblebee). They had an interesting relationship, something like a big brother and little brother, only they occasionally switched roles, which helped make them all the more intriguing. I was honestly a little shocked no one else had this relationship, particularly characters like Epps and Lennox - you think as soldiers they'd have the brothers in arms bond with the robots.

    We never really saw this again until Cade and Optimus, whose relationship seems to be based off mutual respect - Optimus respects Cade for saving his life, and Cade respects Optimus for sparing his. Over time this grows in a natural way, leading to a strong bond between them.

    I think people are too quick to judge on the potential of human characters (though I understand being disappointed because of how that potential has been squandered). Think of a human and a Transformer with such a strong bond that they practically consider each other family. Or a human who idolizes a Transformer that doesn't give two shits about him. Or a Transformer who has to supress their genuine emotional love for a human because one of them is a 25 foot tall robot (Kiss Players references aside that's an interesting dynamic that pushes too close into "fan fic" territory to ever really be explored further and that makes me sad).

    Idk. There's lot that can be done with the humans. Of course this isn't a be all end all to the character, there's still backstory, motivations, all that stuff that has to go into making a good character before the robots ever get involved. But it's a possibility that could hopefully alleviate some dislike towards humans.
     
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  2. Scrapmaker

    Scrapmaker For the Honor

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    For my part, it's less hate for humans overall and more for the specific characters.

    Sam and Mikaela were okay in the first movie, though I preferred the military characters and Maggie and Glen. But I couldn't stand anyone but the NEST team among human characters in RotF, and considering that I don't like that movie to begin with...

    Like, I found Sam annoying. After the first movie, nothing about his character was really engaging, at least in my opinion. The less I say about Mikaela, the better.

    And in Age of Extinction, the only human I cared about was Cade. Shane and Tessa's only crime as characters is being forgettable. Okay, Tessa ends up a damsel in distress, Cade is the overprotective father that doesn't like her boyfriend, but eventually warms up to him, and they help Optimus save Cade and kill Lockdown. I remember the things they did, but I don't remember their actual characters very well.
     
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  3. eagc7

    eagc7 TF Movieverse fan

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    i like the humans, i dont mind them getting the focus.
     
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  4. Murasame

    Murasame

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    Because we want to identify with the robot heroes and not their human liaisons.
     
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  5. fathi_haziq

    fathi_haziq Petrolhead

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    I don't mind then human characters having roles in the movies as long as they don't overshadow the robots and taking up the majority of the movie's runtime. Heck, Lennox is in my favorite Top 5 of all the characters in the movieverse either robots or humans.
     
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  6. Windsweeper II

    Windsweeper II The Pristine

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    I wouldnt mind Mikaela like she was in Twilights last gleaming she was a very good character there and even in the movies she was a good character, the military guys are ok too, and the villains are well written, Cade and Tessa are good characters.
    Thats the difference, all of these are actual characters. If you look at the other girls in the earlier movies, they are all just pinups: "isnt she pretty? And look how clever she is. Isnt she pretty? And look she a scary alien too. Isnt she pretty? And she's ... Pretty too." the less said about them the better.
    And the other guys from the movies are just there for comic relief. They are cringeworthy at their worst and mildly tollerable at their best.
    But the main problem isnt even with characterisation. I wouldntbmind that as much if they didnt hogg screentime to the loss of characteriation for the TF's.
     
  7. iceburn9

    iceburn9 Constructicon

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    Almost every movie ever made, is about human characters. Excuse me for not being overly enthusiastic about my own species, but Transformers belongs to a small minority of creative works (or whatever you'd like to call it) that centers around non-terrestrial lifeforms, and personally, I wish that was more of the case in the live action films.

    Sure, it's nice to have some worthwhile human characters. But for one of the rare instances, I'd like the movies to revolve around something else. Especially when the source material does revolve around an extraterrestrial life form.

    Perhaps my viewpoint is clouded by age and cynicism. But I'd really like to see more of the Transformers and less of the non-essential humans. For instance, I enjoyed Sam's relationship with Bumblebee, but I could do without Leo, Jerry Wang or John Malkovich's character.
     
  8. SPLIT LIP

    SPLIT LIP Formerly SPLIT LIP

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    If only giant robots existed for real, we could just hire them.
     
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  9. bellpeppers

    bellpeppers A Meat Popsicle

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    Naw, people would still argue their aesthetic
     
  10. Ash from Carolina

    Ash from Carolina Junior Smeghead

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    After so many Transformers cartoons with humans in the show it would seem a little weird to not have humans in the film.

    The problem isn't so much that there are humans in the films, although as Transformers fans we will always want more robot time. The problem is that so many of the human characters would be horrible stinky characters no matter what sort of movie you put them in. The test is would you watch a movie with these characters if huge alien robots weren't involved and sadly too many of the human characters in the Transformers movies have been SyFy movie of the week bad.

    Some of the human characters have been pretty good characters that have added something to the movie even if it is something small they added. The reason I think the humans get so much hate is that it's easier to remember the horrible rotten characters than to remember the characters that were pretty darn good. It's like a fairly good meal with one piece of under cooked chicken, even if the rest of it was pretty tasty what you tend to remember is the time you spent in the bathroom thanks to salmonella.
     
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  11. Darker

    Darker The Lord of the Dark

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    I'm just going to say that the last option in that poll needs more votes.
     
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  12. Autobot Burnout

    Autobot Burnout A face you can trust! Really!

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    Like the helicopter pilot who originally was just there to fly Blackout on-set and ended up being the holomatter avatar of Blackout AND Barricade. We could use humans as the human representations of the robots - doesn't cost CGI to have people physically stand next to a car, and if there's enough money for Anthony fucking Hopkins then hiring some photogenic people (like the heli pilot was) is not out of the realm of possibility to solve the excessive human time AND allow more robot character time even if the robots themselves are not present.

    Because who doesn't want to see Peter Cullen actually be Optimus Prime in voice and body?
     
  13. Moy

    Moy Constructicons!

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    No hate, more like a discontent that they receive the most screen time.
    But considering how expensive transformers are to keep on screen it makes sense to me.

    I'm happy for any TF screen time at this point.
     
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  14. Wolf

    Wolf old school bot

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    It needs the human aspect for the ability to relate to it, even going back to g1 there was human involvement, the 'stars' of the show are always the transformers, they still are but they also need the humans for connection to the world around them and to make them relevant.....but imo what they need to avoid at all costs is humans being the 'central plot points', they just about got away with it in rotf but the other two worked better and AOE for me was a bit of a return to the rotf mess of human robot collaboration where the transformers nearly became supporting cast members, if only offset by the amount of screen time available for everyone, hence the lukewarm reception to AOE in expectant countries...so I just hope that they return to the dotm formula where the humans fit around what the transformers are doing and not the other way around
     
  15. sevenlima

    sevenlima Well-Known Member

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    Humans always will be part of Transformers franchise.
     
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  16. Scorpio

    Scorpio Well-Known Member

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    Human characters were always a way for people to connect with Transformers because people believed that it would be more difficult for people to connect with robotic characters than humans.

    Later on however people realised this wasn't necessary - that while humans could be in the story the main emotional core of Transformers could be with the robots. For a time there was harmony, but like all great knowledge, some wanted it for good... others wanted to ignore it to secure cinema sales. Unfortunately to secure the audience's interest it was deemed that human characters were necessary, as such they were added to the movie. The CORE issue simply being that they were not interesting, lacked character development and were primarily stereotypes. The potentially more interesting human characters who had a proper logical stake in the conflict were shafted for the sake of other characters.

    Which brings us back to the question 'Why the hate on humans?'

    The answer is simple, they aren't humans. Or to be more specific, they aren't humans written in a way anyone would want to watch and they are portrayed in ways that dehumanises them. Primarily people don't want to see racist/sexist stereotypes or tired cliché' characters such as a 'boy in love' or a 'father protecting his daughter' that never really go further than that. A majority of Transformers media has human characters and while everyone dislikes a human character or two from previous Transformers media, you at least liked that media and other humans in that media because they were well written and developed alongside well written and developed Transformers.

    Though admittedly the problem is heightened when little or no effort is put on characterising the Transformers. The human characters then become the place to lay blame because people theorise if they were not in the movie then more effort would have been made on the Transformers.
     
  17. electronic456

    electronic456 Well-Known Member

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    I think it's better to consider how humans are written in the movie compared to how much time they take up on screen.
     
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  18. Autobot Burnout

    Autobot Burnout A face you can trust! Really!

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    Not entirely - back in Animated the only key allies the Bots had most of the time was Issac 'keeps Megatron's head in a lab and didn't tell anybody about it' Sumdac, Sari 'socialy estranged girl who turns out to not even be fully human in the first place' Sumdac, and good 'ol Captain 'I HATE TECHNOLOGY' Fanzone - god I miss Fanzone.

    The issue is the belief only humans are the means to help the audience relate to the robots and this is total bullshit. Transformers are already inherently based on humans by being mostly bipedal and everything created by them is in fact actually human creation through them, since they are but tools to tell a story to other humans.

    Or in other words watch Westworld on HBO because half the cast are artificially made, 3D-printed humans and the point of view is in fact often from their perspective. Seriously, there's a point where they pull a plot twist so insane (but not at random - the clues were there) that it really throws the question of 'what really defines humanity' into doubt on many levels. Which is where the problem lies with the Transformers in TF films - they don't have nearly enough depth of character put into anybody not named Optimus Prime.

    The sad irony there is one of those people was Spielberg...who made fucking E.T. of all things.

    In a way, that theory is true. Even by cutting out sections of human-only relevant plot shit, that increases the percentage of time the film spends on Transformers simply by being a shorter film. But the writers apparently would rather simply revisit worn out stereotype cookie cutter drama and shoehorn unrelated robot battles around them than keep the humans as supporting characters like they should be. That is the problem with the writers room - where the fuck was quality control to prevent them from shitting out deconstructed plot outlines from popular films and reassembling them as 'original' Transformers plots when they clearly are not? Even Fucking James Cameron's Avatar is just Blue Cat Smurf Pochohantas with sci-fi gunships and a hive mind portrayed as the morally good side of conflict for once.
     
  19. Venixion

    Venixion Evil Dust Bunny-con

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    I found Sam annoying and confusing. Naturally the likes of cemetery wind and Simmons are supposed to be hateable, which means they did a fine job. I liked Mikaela, she was decisive and capable. The others it depended on.
     
  20. Mr JackatooTM

    Mr JackatooTM I'm a Colossal boi

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    Sam was...ok I guess. Don't really care about him.