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

March 11, 2014 by  



transformers-armada

If you grew up with “Transformers Armada” as a child or an adult who has followed every or many “Transformers” animated series as possible, and watching the series with an open mind to a fresh new story and alternate timeline, “Transformers: Armada” is definitely recommended!  A great value with all 52-episodes for under $30!

Image courtesy of © Hasbro Studios. All Rights Reserved.

BLU-RAY TITLE: Transformers Armada: The Complete Series

TV RELEASE DATE: 2002

DURATION: 52 Episodes (19 3/4 Hours)

BLU-RAY INFORMATION: 4:3, Color, stereo

COMPANY: Hasbro Studios/Shout! Factory

RATED: TY Y7

DVD RELEASE DATE: March 11, 2014

Directed by Masayuki Matsumoto, Hidehito Ueda

Written by Shoji Tonoike, Jono Howard, Terry Klassen, Ryo Motohira, Ward Perry, Kathleen Westlake

Executive Producer: Steve Drucker, Eugene Ishikawa

Animation Producer: Hiroshi Kato, Kichou Minami

Cinematography by Yasuhisa Kondo

Edited by Bruce Cathcart

Art Direction by Nobuto Sakamoto

Featuring the Voices of:

Michael Dobson as Starscream

Terry Klassen as Jetfire

Ward Perry as Scavenger

Don Brown as Cyclonus

Michael Daingerfield as Wheeljack

Brian Dobson as Red Alert

Scott McNeil as Jetfire

Kirby Morrow as Rad

Collin Murdock as Thrust

Doug Parker as Tidal Wave

Tony Sampson as Fred

Alvin Sanders as Demolishor

Tabitha St. Germain as Alexis

Sam Vincent as Sideswipe

Dale Wilson as Hoist

Garry Chalk as Optimus Prime

David Kaye as Megatron

Paul Dobson  as Nemesis Prime

Brian Drummond as Blurr

Andrew Francis as Billy

Matt Hill as Carlos

Brent Miller as Hot Shot

Jim Conrad as the Narrator

Kelly Sheridan as Hologram Girl

Mark Acheson as Unicron

The fight between the valiant Autobots and treacherous Decepticons continues, but the fate of the war may lie in the hands of the small, power-enhancing Transformers known as Mini-Cons. With the aid of the Autobots, the Mini-Cons escape Cybertron, but their safety is short-lived after an attack cripples the ship and forces it to crash land in Earth s solar system. Now, after millions of years in stasis, the Decepticons have been alerted to the Mini-Cons whereabouts and it s up to the Autobots to protect them as well as all of humanity.

In 2002-2003, “Transformers: Armada” aired on television in Japan but also in the United Stats.

The first “Transformers” series co-produced by Hasbro and Takara, the series would be a new chapter in alternate universes of “Transformers” and a series that would try to appeal to the new younger fans to “Transformers” but also to the young at heart who have followed “Transformers” since the ’80s.

With a total of 52 episodes which have aired on television, “Transformers Armada” will now be released on DVD in March 2014 courtesy of Shout! Factory.

In “Transformers: Armada”, the war between the Autobots and Decepticons continues but for this series, the war is over the Mini-Cons which can enhance the power for either side.

As the Mini-Cons try to escape with the Autobots, the Decepticons were able to damage their escape ship through the spacebridge.

The Autobots were able to materialize into Earth’s solar system, crashing into the moon, while the other half lands on Planet Earth, scattering Mini-Cons all over the world.

Over millions of years later, two young teens, Bradly “Rad” White and Carlos Lopez enter caves and discover the wreckage of a Mini-Con ship and as it activates, a signal is sent to both the Autobots and Decepticons who now know that their war with each other will continue on another planet.

Optimus Prime leads the Autobots which include Hot Shot, Red Alert, Smokescreen, Scavenger, Blurr and Sideswipe to find the Mini-Cons, while Megatron leads the Decepticons which includes Starscream, Demolishor, Cyclonus, Thurst, Tidal Wave and Wheeljack.  But for Optimus Prime, to understand Earth, they put their trust in Rad, Carlos and their friend Alexis.

“Transformers Armada: The Complete Series” featured the following episodes (spoilerless summary) on eight DVD discs:

  • EPISODE 1 – The day Rad and Carlos met the Autobots
  • EPISODE 2 – The Autobots vs. the Decepticons
  • EPISODE 3 – Rad and friends team up with the Autobots
  • EPISODE 4 – The Autobots try to save the MiniCons and Optimus comes face to face with Megatron
  • EPISODE 5 – Hot Shot and Red Alert have their own set ways and Hot Shot has a hard time believing Red Alert was a brave soldier on Cybertron.
  • EPISODE 6 – Starscream orders Demolisher and Cyclonus to attack the Autobots.
  • EPISODE 7 – Rad and Carlos take Highwire and Sureshock to a carnival.
  • EPISODE 8 – Optimus and the Autobots arrive on a desert to save Mini-Cons.
  • EPISODE 9 – Billy and Fred are kidnapped by Cyclonus.
  • EPISODE 10 – Who is the mysterious Transformer? Is he Autobot or Decepticon?
  • EPISODE 11 – Carlos tries to help a girl he becomes smitten with.
  • EPISODE 12 – Rad figures out how the people who had possession of the Star Saber destroyed themselves.
  • EPISODE 13 – Cyclonus searches for the Autobot base.
  • EPISODE 14 – Demolisher, Starscream and Cyclonus try to capture a Mini-con.
  • EPISODE 15 – Is Hot Shot the most powerful Autobot?
  • EPISODE 16 – Hot Shot and Sideways become good friends.
  • EPISODE 17 – Hot Shot is depressed…
  • EPISODE 18 – What happens when Scavenger shows up?
  • EPISODE 19 – Rad, Carlos and Billy take Smokescreen, Red Alert and the Mini-cons to a vacation site.
  • EPISODE 20 –The Autobots meet Blurr, but why doesn’t he and Hot Shot get along?
  • EPISODE 21 – Megatron challenges the Autobots to a battle.
  • EPISODE 22 – The Decepticons set a clever trap for the Autobots.
  • EPISODE 23 – Megatron vs. Starscream
  • EPISODE 24 – What happens when Alexis’ laptop is infected with a virus?
  • EPISODE 25 – The Decepticons losing streak lead to the group starting to quarrel with one another.
  • EPISODE 26 – Optimus Prime is wounded in battle.
  • EPISODE 27  – Will Thrust’s new plans help the Decepticons?
  • EPISODE 28  – Enter the Decepticon known as Tidal Wave.
  • EPISODE 29 – Rad and friends discover a fearful Mini-con.
  • EPISODE 30 – The kids take the Mini-cons out of the base.
  • EPISODE 31  – A past from the old days when Hot Shot trained a young soldier named Wheeljack.
  • EPISODE 32 – Wheeljack the enemy?
  • EPISODE 33 – Starscream challenges the Autobots.
  • EPISODE 34  – Can Red Alert help a wounded Transformer?
  • EPISODE 35 – The Autobots vs. the Decepticons in an all-out battle.
  • EPISODE 36  – Starscream wants revenge against Megatron.
  • EPISODE 37  – Sideways and Thrust plan on how to get the Mini-Cons from the Autobots.
  • EPISODE 38  –  Megatron wants Starscream to use the Hydra cannon on Earth.
  • EPISODE 39  – Megatron has a new weapon.
  • EPISODE 40  – The new leader of the Autobots.
  • EPISODE 41  – Rad has a nightmare about the Autobots.
  • EPISODE 42 – Can anyone save Optimus Prime?
  • EPISODE 43 – The fight against Nemesis Prime.
  • EPISODE 44  – The Autobots and Decepticons are back on Cybertron.
  • EPISODE 45  – Hot Shot heads to the Decepticons base.
  • EPISODE 46  – The kids learn the truth about the Mini-cons.
  • EPISODE 47  – The kids, Hotshot, Wheeljack and Starscream go after Thrust.
  • EPISODE 48  – Optimus Prime tries to convince Galvatron of working together to fight Unicron.
  • EPISODE 49  – The Decepticons debate to join forces with the Autobots.
  • EPISODE 50  – The Autobots and Decepticons unite to fight a greater evil.
  • EPISODE 51  – The search for Optimus and Galvatron.
  • EPISODE 52  -FINAL EPISODE: The Transformers vs. Unicron.

VIDEO & AUDIO:

“Transformers Armada: The Complete Series” is presented in 4:3 (standard definition), color and in stereo.  While I am still biased towards the original animation of the “Transformers” and for modern animation, more towards “Transformers: Cybertron” and “Transformers: Prime”, while the character design of “Transformers: Armada” was not as detailed for the humans, a lot of the animation was focused on mechanical design of the Transformers.

Backgrounds are the usual standard rocks and trees, but the backgrounds are detailed and well-painted.

But for those who enjoyed “Transformers Armada”, the positive about this series is that the series looks very good on DVD.  There is no sign of any blemishes, dust or aging.  The animated series looks very good on DVD and if anything, fans should be happy with the overall picture quality.

SPECIAL FEATURES:

“Transformers Armada: The Complete Series” comes with no special features.

EXTRAS:

“Transformers Armada: The Complete Series” comes with a cardboard slipcover.

When “Transformers Armada” aired on television, there was no doubt that animators were going for a family friendly animated series.

The animated series during the 2000’s, focused on the Autobots working with children to help them find some sort of relic and in this case, Armada was about the Mini-cons which could be utilized to create powerful weapons.

And I have to admit that when this series aired, that was part of my frustration as a longtime “Transformers” fan, seeing how this series was playing out too soft and seemed more of family series to appeal to the young and the young at heart but also emphasizing the toyline.

But by the second half of the series, the third season would flip the danger level of “Transformers Armada” and show major battles with major repercussions as certain characters, literally are killed.  And in someways, there were some aspect of the series that looked as it was paying homage to the oldschool “Transformers” animated film with something bad happening to Optimus Prime, a new leader for the Autobots, but most importantly, the major antagonist towards the end of the series started to change from Megatron to the behemoth known as Unicron.

And from that point on, my faith was restored in the series and I would end up catching the next series with “Energon” and “Cybertron” and even going so far as to purchase the toys and introducing my son to the world of the Transformers.

And while he was only a baby when this series came out, my son grew up watching “Transformers” and the continuing series and eventually having his own large collection of Transformers.  But for him watching this series in 2014, it was seeing him react to the series that I realized that Hasbro/Takara did a good job in creating this alternate universe and new storyline for “Transformers: Armada” that this new generation of Transformers fans can watch and enjoy.

My son absolutely enjoyed “Transformers Armada”, for its characters, its humor and even it’s mild battles.  Sure, “Transformers Armada” is nothing like the series that I grew up with in the ’80s and it’s not meant to be.  This series was created for the new generation of fans of the Transformers and as the series had its fans who grew up watching it on television, they also grew up with the toys, like the series did for me back in the generation 1 years.

With the release of “Transformers Armada: The Complete Series”, fans are getting all 52-episodes on eight DVD’s and for any fans of the “Transformers” animated series, these complete collections are wonderful as there is no having to purchase multiple volumes and it’s straight-up a complete collection of all episodes for a great price at under $30.

While I am not familiar with the older Rhino DVD release of “Transformers Armada”, the DVD quality from the Shout! Factory release is very good, no signs of major damage or aging.  No major artifacts and the best that one can expect from a DVD release.  There are no special features included but with eight DVD’s featuring 52-episodes, I’m quite thrilled with the overall package.  A complete series with all seasons for under $30.  That’s a major deal!

Overall, if you grew up with “Transformers Armada” as a child or an adult who has followed every or many”Transformers” animated series as possible, and watching the series with an open mind to a fresh new story and alternate timeline, “Transformers: Armada” is definitely recommended!  A great value with all 52-episodes for under $30!






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