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Transformers Animated: The Complete Series (a J!-ENT DVD Review)

June 22, 2014 by  



transformers-animated

The release of “Transformers Animated: The Complete Series” is a fantastic collection on DVD of all episodes from all three seasons. It’s a safe animated series that parents can easily show their children and for those who are young at heart, watch a “Transformers” series that is not banal and took a different creative direction for each character. Exciting, action-packed and a different type of “Transformers” series, “Transformers Animated: The Complete Series”: is recommended!

Image courtesy of: © 2014 Hasbro. All Rights Reserved.

DVD TITLE: Transformers Animated: The Complete Series

DURATION: 42 Eposodes (15.5 hours)

DVD INFORMATION: Anamorphic, 1:78:1, Dolby Digital – English 2.0

COMPANY: Shout! Factory

RATED: TV Y7 FV

RELEASE DATE: June 10, 2014

Trapped on Earth, far from home and living in disguise, the brave Autobots must protect the ancient, all-powerful AllSpark from getting into the hands of the malevolent Decepticons. As if their task weren’t difficult enough, the team (led by the honor-bound Optimus Prime and including Bulkhead, Prowl, Ratchet and Bumblebee) must also protect Earth from its own nefarious super villains! Can this mere maintenance team live up to the highest standard of what it truly means to be Autobots?

Finally, you can own the complete Transformers Animated series, including the never-before-released third season, right here in one exciting collection!

Back in 2007, a new Transformers animated series was unveiled on Cartoon Network.

Thanks to a unique overhaul of the characters courtesy of popular Japanese animation studios MOOK DLE, The Answer Studio and Studio 4°C (who were known for their animated work in the U.S. for series such as “Teen Titans” and “Ben 10”), the series proved to be a hit with children but also the young at heart.

Featuring a storyline that although is quite different compared to past series, the overall theme of the Autobots versus the Decepticons continues but there are some twists and turns that would eventually happen through the two seasons as the series would focus on a small crew of Autobots who find the AllSpark artifact and while on a mission, the crew led by Optimus Prime was being pursued by the Decepticons led by Megatron.

The group would eventually land in future Detroit, once known for creation of automobiles, has now become a leader of creating robots.

And while the Autobots are of higher alien technology, they are assisted by the spunky Sari Sumdac and her scientist father Isaac Sumdac.

And while season 1 was more of a character introducing season, by season two, the series  would feature more twists and turns but also more action, more battles and several surprises with appearances of more Autobot and Decepticon characters but also episodes paying some homage to the past “Transformers” animated film and series.

This second season continued where the last left off. The first season focused on the Autobots working with a young girl named Sari Sumdac and trying to find the Allspark, meanwhile Sari’s father (Professor Isaac Sumdac) thinking that Megatron is a good guy, works hard to revive him (and following his orders to keep his existence private). The season reached it’s climactic point as Megatron is revived and the battle between the Autobots and Decepticons go full force. And Sari’s father is kidnapped by Megatron and forced to be a slave to Megatron.

While the third season began with the Autobot group, Team Athenia, led by Rodimus Prime defending a space bridge against the Decepticons, Team Char led by Strika.  But trouble arises and Rodimus Prime is forced to seek help, meanwhile Megatron manages to infiltrate Omega Supreme, the Autobot that was created to be a weapon of mass destruction against the Decepticons.  But his inactive body was taken by Megatron who tries to find a way to use the Autobot weapon against the Autobots.

Also, the origin of Sari is revealed.  But most importantly, the final season features the conclusion to the animated series and the battle between Optimus Prime and Megatron.

To give a quick refresher on who the main robots are in the series.

The main Autobot team are:

Optimus Prime (played by David Kaye) has always been the main leader of the Autobots in the past but with this Optimus Prime, he is a rookie leader for the Autobots on planet Earth. Unlike previous Optimus Prime, this leader didn’t do that well in Autobot Academy. Optimus Prime transforms into a futuristic firetruck in vehicle mode and in robot mode, his weapon of choice is an Energon axe.

Ratchet (played by Corey Burton) is an Autobot medic and a veteran. He shares his classic stories about the past Great War with his fellow younger Autobots and can be quite grumpy towards others. Ratchet is equipped with an EMP generator as his main weapon and transforms into an ambulance in vehicle mode.

Bulkhead (played by Bill Fagerbakke) is the bulky Autobot that is a demolition specialist but enjoys art and quite laid back. His main weapon are his cannonballs and he transforms into a green swat truck.

Bumblebee (played by Bumper Robinson) is the young, overconfident member who is friends with young Sari and his best friend is Bulkhead. Bumblebee transforms into futuristic bug but has speed blasters on its rear and his main weapons are his stingers on his hands.

Prowl (played by Jeff Bennet) loves nature and he sometimes acts alone. He transforms into a motorcycle and his weapons are ninja-like stars.

The main Decepticon team are:

Megatron (played by Corey Burton) is the cold and manipulative leader of the Decepticons. Transforms to a Cybertronian Fusion jet fighter and a gunship with two propellers. His main weapons are a fusion cannon and twin swords.

Blitzwing (played by Bumper Robinson) is unstable and has a split personality. Each personality can chance to a cold warrior, another that is aggressive and then a flame face which is psychotic. He transformers into a tank and also a jet.

Lugnut (played by David Kaye) is a giant Decepticon with brute strength and is devoted to Megatron. He can turn into a bomber jet.

Starscream (played by Tom Kenny) is sarcastic and as always, two-faced. Wants to take over of the Decepticons and has many clones of himself. He can turn into a fighter jet.

Blackarachnia (played by Cree Summer) was formerly an Autobot named Elita-1 and friend to Optimus Prime. Was caught in an accident that has transformed her into a techno-organic spider and now has a hatred towards the Autobots.

Lockdown (played by Lance Henriksen) is a mercenary and is a bounty-for-hire. Not a Decepticon or Autobot but has been known to assist Megatron for parts.

The following episodes included on “Transformers Animated: The Complete Series” are as follows:

  1. TRANSFORM AND ROLL OUT (Part One) – Optimus Prime and the Autobots are pursued by the Decepticons for the AllSpark.
  2. TRANSFORM AND ROLL OUT (Part Two) – The Autobots get used to their temporary home on Earth.
  3. TRANSFORM AND ROLL OUT (Part Three) – The Autobots team up with humans.
  4. HOME IS WHERE THE SPARK IS – The Autobots have a new HQ.
  5. TOTAL MELTDOWN – Bumblebee transforms into Meltdown.
  6. BLAST FROM THE PAST – Professor Sumdace upgrades a trio of animatronic dinosaurs.
  7. THRILL OF THE HINT – A robotis creating problems in Detroit.
  8. NANOSEC – Bumblebee has a new rival on the road…. Nanosec.
  9. ALONG CAME A APSIDER – Bumblebee and Bulkhead confront Blackarachnia.
  10. SOUND AND FURY – Sari’s toy robot becomes evil.
  11. LOST AND FOUND – The Autobots confront Decepticons Lugnut and Blitzwing.
  12. SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST – Sari has been kidnapped.
  13. HEADMASTER – A Sumdace employee wants revenge and takes control of an Autobot.
  14. NATURE CALLS – Prowl, Bumblebee and Sari go on a mission.
  15. MEGATRON RISING (PART 1) – The Decepticons plan to invade earth.
  16. MEGATRON RISING (PART 2) –  The Autobots must defend the AllSpark by all cost and keep it away from the Decepticons.
  17. THE ELITE GUARD – The Elite Guard featuring Ultra Magnus, Sentinel Prime and Jazz arrive to Earth and find out if stories by Optimus Prime in regards to the Allspark fragments and Decepticons are true. Meanwhile, with Sari’s father missing and no one heading the company, without proof that Sari is a legitimate child of the Professor, she is kicked out of the Sumdac Building and lives with the Autobots.
  18. THE RETURN OF THE HEADMASTER – The Headmaster returns and this time, he takes the body of Sentinel Prime.
  19. MISSION ACCOMPLISHED – Ultra Magnus receives a distress message from Ironhide that there is a major uprising by the Decepticons and requests backup. With no proof of Decepticons on Earth, the Elite Guard asks Optimus Prime and the main Autobots to leave Earth and assist the other Autobots in different parts of the galaxy. That is, until Starscream shows up to take on the Elite Guard and the Autobots.
  20. GARBAGE IN, GARBAGE OUT – The Allspark fragment brings trashbots to life which includes a naive robot named Wreck-Gar who doesn’t know who to follow…the Autobots or Decepticons. Note: This is a homage to the Transformers animated film (1986) with references to to the film and Weird Al Yankovic song “Dare to be Stupid”. And to make things even sweeter, Wreck-Gar features the voice of Weird Al.
  21. VELOCITY – Bumblebee bends the rules and takes part in street racing but there is another speedster in the race. How is it that an Earth car be faster than Bumblebee? Unless it’s another robot. Note: This episode is the first appearance of the Autobot, Blur.
  22. RISE OF THE CONSTRUCTICONS – Autobot fragments have turned vehicles at the construction site to robots. Bulkhead befriends Scrapper and Mixmaster but what happens when Megatron sways them to join the Decepticons?
  23. A FISTFUL OF ENERGON – Prowl and Bulkhead try to help Grimlock of the Dinobots from an injury. Afterwards, Prowl goes after Starscream alone but it seems another robot is after Starscream… Lockdown returns!
  24. S.U.V. – SOCIETY OF ULTIMATE VILLAINY – The villains are back and it seems they have teamed up with an evil robot intergalactic arms dealer named Swindle. (Note: First appearance of Swindle)
  25. AUTOBOOT CAMP – Wasp escapes from prison and Sentinel Prime starts pursuing him. In this episode, you learn more about Bumblebee and Wasp’s relationship and why Wasp hates Bumblebee so much.
  26. BLACK FRIDAY – The Dinobots become servants of Blackarachnia and she has them kidnap Meltdown of the Autobots.
  27. SARI, NO ONE’S HOME – The return of the Constructicons and Bulkhead and Bumblebee are attacked by Blitzwing.
  28. A BRIDGE TOO CLOSE, PART ONE – The Constructicons join the Decepticons, Starscream and his clones concoct a plan. Meanwhile Megatron kidnaps Bulkhead after Shockwave reveals that Bulkhead is a top space bridge engineer.
  29. A BRIDGE TOO CLOSE, PART TWO – Starscream and his clones attack the Decepticons, the Autobots do what they can to prevent the Decepticons from using the space bridge and the Autobots spaceship transforms to Omega Supreme. Also, something happens to Sari.
  30. TRANSWARPED (PART 1) – A traitor among the Autobots.
  31. TRANSWARPED (PART 2) – Megatron’s plans of invading Earth continues.
  32. TRANSWARPED (PART 3) – Can the Autobots protect the Earth from the Decepticons?
  33. THREE’S A CROWD – Bulkhead wants help from the Constructicons.
  34. WHERE IS THEY STING? – Wasp wants revenge on Bumblebee.
  35. FIVE SERVOS OF DOOM – How is Sentinel Prime achieving all this success?
  36. PREDACONS RISING – Wasp ends up on Dinobot Island.
  37. HUMAN ERROR, PART 1 – It’s Christmas time for the Autobots.
  38. HUMAN ERROR, PART II – The Autobots are held captive but can Sari save them?
  39. DECEPTICON AIR – The Decepticons aboard the Elite Guard try to take down the Autobots.
  40. THIS IS WHY I HATE MACHINES – Ratchet and Captain Fanzone are sent to Cybertron.
  41. ENDGAME, PART 1 – Megatron takes control of Omega Supreme.
  42. ENDGAME, PART 2 – The Autobots defend Detroit from the Omega Supreme clones and Megatron.

VIDEO & AUDIO:

“Transformers Animated: The Complete Series” is presented in anamorphic (1:78:1) and is presented in Dolby Digital 2.0.  Animation for “Transfomrers Animated” is colorful and vibrant and looked very good on DVD.  Dialogue is dialogue-driven and crystal clear through the front channels.

SPECIAL FEATURES:

The special features on this “Transformers Animated: The Complete Series” are:

  • Audio Commentary by Matt Youngberg (Supervising Director), Eric Siebenaler (Lead Product Designer) and Derrick Wyatt (Art Director) for “Mission Accomplished” and “Garbage In, Garbage Out”. The audio commentary was very nice as the guys talk about the various anime studios that produced certain scenes from the animation. Talk about how certain characters were supposed to be featured but didn’t, homages to “Transformers” past and much more. What I found awesome was that you get the perspectives of those who work on the show but also the perspective of someone involved in the toy line. And each are big fans of “Transformers” that listening to the audio commentaries were definitely worthwhile.
  • Audio commentary by Marty Isenberg (Story Editor), Sue Blue (Dialogue Director), David Kaye (voice actor for Optimus Prime, Lugnut and more), Matt Youngberg (Supervising Director) and Derrick Wyatt (Art Director) for “Transwarped, Part 1, 2 and 3”

“TRANSFORMERS ANIMATED” is a big part of my family.

As a fan of the older series, I enjoy watching it with my five-year-old, who is just a big fan of the series. We own nearly every toy in the “TRANSFORMERS ANIMATED” line and for him, he really loves the character designs of the robots. I enjoy the storyline. It’s quite interesting because I know many parents who watch the series with their kids and also, own a lot of the toys because they love transforming them and their kids love playing with them.

This passion for “TRANSFORMERS ANIMATED” is worldwide and sure, I’m always going to be a diehard fan of G1 but even for me, I really enjoy what Hasbro has done in creating a cool, refreshing, action-packed animated series. The thing is, this series was created for today’s generation but created by people who were passionate about the older “TRANSFORMER” series and know that there are fans who will continue to stick with the series no matter what age they are, thus the creators put a bit of that nostalgia into this series and in my opinion, they succeeded in making sure the series attracts the young and older fans.

And for anyone who grew up watching this animated series and enjoyed it, many fans will be pleased with a full collection of all 42 episodes on DVD for a great price!

There were so many characters introduced throughout the three seasons and quite a few surprises as well. There is also quite a bit of humor in the series and even some drama (even though it’s more towards the hilarious side) as we see Sentinel Prime and Optimus Prime’s dislike for each other escalate but also the same can be said with the relationship between Megatron and Starscream. Also, the battles between the Autobots and Decepticons were pretty exciting and the incorporated characters, the inclusion of Omega Supreme and also an alternative look at Autobots, especially an Optimus Prime that was not a high-ranking Autobot was rather fascinating to see.

Overall, the release of “Transformers Animated: The Complete Series” is a fantastic collection on DVD of all episodes from all three seasons.  It’s a safe animated series that parents can easily show their children and for those who are young at heart, watch a “Transformers” series that is not banal and took a different creative direction for each character.

Exciting, action-packed and a different type of “Transformers” series, “Transformers Animated: The Complete Series”: is recommended!

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