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A Bridge Too Close, Part II

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TFA ABTC2 TitleCard

Finally, a picture with a MySpace angle.


The fates of Cybertron and Earth lie in the balance as Optimus Prime and his Autobots battle Megatron and his Decepticons in a fight to the finish for the AllSpark.

German title: "Die Weltraumbrücke, Teil 2" ("The Spacebridge, Part 2")
Japanese title: "The Mighty Strength" (強大なる力 Kyōdai naru Chikara)

Summary

ABridgeTooCloseII-Mixmasteroilburst

"'Ey! I was drinkin' dat!"

Starscream and his clones swoop into the Decepticons’ mine headquarters and concentrate their fire on Megatron. Chaos erupts as the Autobots free themselves and start tackling the clones, and Bulkhead and Professor Sumdac attempt to deactivate the space bridge. Mixmaster is attacked by Thundercracker and binds him in cement, while Blurr stasis cuffs Skywarp. As fast as he is, though, Blurr fails to get out of the way of Thundercracker, who crashes into both him and the Skywarp, getting them caught in his cement overcoat and sending them all tumbling into the space bridge. Bulkhead attempts to recall them, but explains that the targeting coordinates of the bridge were never set, meaning that they could have been sent anywhere in the galaxy. Before he can complete his task, he is attacked by Slipstream, but she overpowers him and hits him with stasis cuffs. Simultaneously, Megatron and Starscream engage in a one-on-one duel, but the balance doesn’t last long, as the female and Liar Starscreams approach Megatron from behind. Optimus Prime, of all ‘bots, comes to Megatron’s rescue, though the irony is not lost on the two combatants.

Meanwhile, on Dinobot Island, Ratchet finishes loading the AllSpark fragments into Teletran-1’s spark chamber. Sari uses the Key to jump-start the craft, but still can’t fathom why Ratchet is talking to the ship...until the ship talks back! Ratchet explains that the ship used to be a warrior who sacrificed his spark to win the Great War, and whose body has been in a state of modified stasis ever since.

TFA ABTC2 Head Starscream

Total ownage, n00b.

Back in the mine, Prime and Megatron continue battling the remaining Starscream clones, but Megatron is not above seizing Prime and using him as a shield. He calls for Mixmaster, currently battling Bumblebee and Prowl, to focus his efforts on the “head Starscream,” giving Professor Sumdac an idea. Just as the clones overpower Megatron and Starscream prepares to finish him, Sumdac clambers inside the Headmaster unit and uses it to decapitate Starscream and take over his body. As Sumdac-Starscream lunges for Megatron, however, the Decepticon leader makes it clear that he is not impressed, and he blasts the Headmaster and Sumdac clean off Starscream’s body. With Starscream now in two pieces and thoroughly defeated, the clones swear loyalty to Megatron.

Back on Dinobot Island, Ratchet and Sari put the Key to work repairing the ship’s memory core. The ship comments that it is unable to see, and Ratchet explains that’s because it’s buried in a cliff and that getting out is priority number one. With another Key boost to help, the ship fires up its engines and manages to tear itself free and take to the air once more.

Mix, Scrapper, Blitzwing and Lugnut

Scrap and Lugnut's mouths look the same

In the mine, things are looking bad for the Autobots—they’ve all been stasis-cuffed, Professor Sumdac is a captive again, and Scrapper has found Lugnut and Blitzwing. Prowl tries a mind-over-matter style of humming (which is annoying Bumblebee) to get rid of the Stasis Cuffs. Bulkhead was surprised he could do that. However, he said it was only in theory, as he never actually completed his Cyber-Ninja training. In true supervillain style, Megatron explains to the Autobots that he plans to use the space bridge to lead his Decepticons in an attack on the under-protected Cybertron, where they will take over the entire space bridge network and transport the entire Decepticon army to the planet. Bulkhead notes that the space bridge requires a receiving code to work, which would mean Megatron would have to have someone on Cybertron, but Bumblebee points out that there is someone: Wasp, the spy he caught at boot camp. Someone is eager to correct Bumblebee, however, as Megatron’s true double agent, Shockwave, appears on a monitor and reveals how he, as Longarm Prime, deceived Bumblebee so long ago. With the theatricalities and exposition complete, Megatron prepares to toss Optimus Prime through the space bridge as a test, when suddenly, the base is rocked by heavy fire from outside. Teletran-1 has arrived!

ABridgeTooCloseII-OmegaSupremeRobotMode

"Stock footage? Bite me."

The fight moves outside as the Starscream clones, Lugnut and Blitzwing all lay siege to the Autobot ship, which is quickly overpowered by the onslaught and begins to fall out of the sky. With another burst of Key power to boost its systems, Ratchet has the ship activate its emergency defense system, codename: Omega. As the shocked Decepticons look on, the ship transforms into a colossal robot mode—the mountainous Omega Supreme!

Slipstream directs the Decepticons to fire on his legs to bring him down, and the move succeeds, but Ratchet links his own systems up to Omega to give him the strength he needs to rise back up and strike back. A hail of lasers and missiles is unleashed upon the villains as Omega strikes, kicks and headbutts them all across the battlefield.

TFA ABTC sacrifice

Omega Supreme, no! You're too cool to die so soon!

Down in the mine, as the Constructicons clear rubble away from the space bridge and Megatron prepares to continue his test, Prowl successfully employs a processor-over-matter focusing technique to escape his stasis cuffs. Just as Prime is about to disappear through the bridge, Prowl hurls a shuriken that breaks his leader’s cuffs, enabling him to fire his grappling line and haul himself to safety. At this point, the space bridge shuts down, and Megatron quickly deduces that the AllSpark fragment powering it is not strong enough. Luckily for him, he has another one—and he promptly grabs Starscream’s head and stuffs it in the power core, along with the fragment the head contains. This, however, causes the core to overload and the bridge to malfunction. As it begins to pull in all surrounding material, Shockwave reports that the destination code has been deleted and that the bridge could send them anywhere. Even in defeat, Megatron attempts to take Prime with him, but before he can fire the blast that will rid him of the Autobot leader, Prime manages to slap a pair of stasis cuffs on Megatron, immobilizing him and causing his body to be sucked into the space bridge. Prowl and Prime free Bulkhead, Bumblebee and Sumdac, but the bridge still threatens to consume the entire state until help comes from above in the form of Omega Supreme. Omega blocks the bridge with his massive body and absorbs its transwarp energies, willing to sacrifice himself once more to save the Autobots. After ejecting Sari and Ratchet from his body, Omega is sucked into the bridge, which collapses in upon itself and vanishes in a dramatic implosion. As Sari and her father are reunited at last, the mine begins to cave in, and the Autobots escape while the Constructicons are buried alive attempting to save their oil.

TFA ABTC Sari spoilers

...There's no way we can make a funny without being jerks.

Retreating to the edge of a nearby cliff that overlooks the destruction, the Autobots reflect on the fact that Omega is probably still out there, somewhere. As Sumdac expresses relief that the whole ordeal is over, Sari once again tells the Autobots that she knew her father could never have betrayed them to the Decepticons. However, even as she espouses her father's honesty, Sari looks down at a cut on her arm...and beneath her skin, she and all around her are shocked to see the sparking circuitry of robotics. Terrified and confused, Sari clutches her arm and takes a few steps away from her father, who explains that they...need to talk...

TFA ABTC2 Megatron Screamer End

Next, on Crossfire...

Somewhere out in the endless void of space, Megatron and the decapitated Starscream float aimlessly in the cosmic night, with nothing to do but snark back and forth at each other.


Stats

Featured characters

(Numbers indicate order of appearance.)

Autobots Decepticons Humans Others

Quotes

Megatron: Lugnut! Blitzwing! I need backup at once! Where are you?
Icy Blitzwing: Yes, about zat. Funny story.


Thundercracker: Fool! A mere construction-bot is no match for my superior firepower.
Mixmaster: Oh, really. Well, you know where you can stick it? (traps the clone with a glob of adhesive goo)
Thundercracker: Impossible! You cannot defeat me! You are not worthy! You are inferior! And your joke stinks!

—Arrogance claims yet another Starscream.


"It's not like you to hide behind an Autobot."
"But it's completely like you to hide behind an army of cheap knockoffs."

Starscream and Megatron always discuss each other's flaws - even in the midst of battle.


Starscream: Well, what are you waiting for? Destroy Megatron!
Slipstream:...Any leader has to be an improvement over you!
Sunstorm: Oh wise and great Megatron, you have truly proven your vast superiority!
Ramjet: I will remain loyal to you forever! (kicks Starscream's body and walks over to Megatron)

—Starscream learns that his clones all share the worst aspect of his personality—his treachery.


Optimus: I still don't see where all this "expertise" came from.
Bulkhead: I had a lot of time to study space bridge schematics back on the energon farm. I just had a knack for 'em, I guess.
Bumblebee: Oh, well, that's great. So the one thing you're good at is going to hand Cybertron over to the Decepticons.

—Even after being declared a technical genius, Bulkhead still can't catch a break.


Megatron: Decepticons! Prepare for our conquest of Cybertron!
[The Decepticons start cheering wildly.]
Scrapper: What's a Cybertron?
Mixmaster: I have no idea, he lost me at "Your fate is sealed now."

—The Constructicons are in this for the oil, not the conquests.


"First, we need to test the Space Bridge - just in case our Autobot expert decided to sabotage it."
"And I will be waiting for the test subject on this side - just in case he didn't sabotage it."

—Proof of why Megatron and Shockwave are good at the "evil genius" game - they make effort to eliminate all options for their enemies.

Issac Sumdac: Total ownage, nOOb!"

Henry Masterson called, he wanted his unit and his line back!

Ratchet: Careful not to fire on our friends!
Sari Sumdac: And try to get a visual of my dad!
Omega Supreme: Sure... what's a dad?

—Omega Supreme is confused on the concept of organics and their paternal relationships. Bit like us really.


Lugnut: Your size is meaningless compared to the greatness of Megatron! Ha!
Slipstream: Size. That's it. Everyone, aim for the legs!

—Lugnut, brave as always and Slipstream proving herself to be an effective leader.


Sunstorm: Oh great and mighty Autobot, it is an honor merely to bask in your majestic pres-
Omega Supreme: (swats him)
Sunstorm: AAAGGGHH!
Ramjet: Hey look! Your stabilizing servo is unbolted!
Omega Supreme: (kicks him)
Ramjet: WAAAGGHH!
Hothead Blitzwing: You overgrown Autobot! I vill scramble your circuits so bad you'll need a GPS scanner to find your own exhaust port! (gets headbutted by Omega Supreme and is sent flying into the distance)
Random Blitzwing: Mayday! Mayday! Let's all dance around ze maypole!

—Omega Supreme versus the Decepticons. It didn't go too well for them.


"Sari, we... need to talk."

Isaac Sumdac's entry in "The Understatement of the Year" competition.


Megatron: Stop staring at me.
Starscream: No. You stop staring at me!
Megatron: Do you think I actually want to spend the rest of eternity gazing at your unsightly visage?
Starscream: Trust me: your visage is no picnic either. And your face is ugly too!
Megatron: Oh, someone just take me offline now...
Starscream: What do you think I've been trying to do for the last four million stellar cycles?!?! AHHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! It's funny, really, when you think about it. Tragic, but funny! AHAHAHAHAHA!
Megatron: ...oh, shut up.

— Stranded and helpless in space, Megatron and Starscream bicker to the end.

Notes

Animation errors

  • When Skywarp is dodging Bumblebee's stinger blasts, his eyes shift to Autobot blue for a split-second.
  • After Shockwave reveals to Bumblebee that he is Longarm Prime, the pan-across shot that follows shows Shockwave on the monitor. In the next close-up of the monitor, Longarm is shown transforming back into Shockwave.
  • Just before Ratchet gives his "don't give up on me now" speech to Omega, there is a shot from the front showing Ratchet with Sari tucked into the mouth of his "backpack". In the next shot, it shows Ratchet from behind, with Sari on top of the backpack, and then switches back to the front view with Sari back in the gap.
  • When Megatron is dragged into the Space Bridge, only one hand is cuffed. When we see him next, both of them are.
    • Perhaps getting dragged into the space bridge with his arms facing towards it caused him to involuntarily stick his arm into the other cuff.
  • Although Scrapper's hands only have three fingers and a thumb. At the scene when he says "What's a Cybertron?", he has four fingers and a thumb.

Continuity errors

  • Several immobilised characters are shown in different positions to last episode:
    • Lugnut and Blitzwing are shown lying face-down on the floor, when they were sitting back-to-back last episode.
    • Bumblebee and Blurr apparently swapped positions in Scrapper's arms since last episode.

Transformers references

Real-world references

  • The restoration of Omega Supreme's memory is very similar to the scene in 2001: A Space Odyssey when Dave Bowman takes HAL-9000's higher functions offline (just in reverse).
  • Prowl's humming forcing the stasis cuffs to open seems inspired by a similar sequence in British superspy spoof movie Johnny English, where the titular hero attempts to escape a prison cell by whistling at the door-lock in the hope that the right frequency will cause the tumblers to rotate. Unlike Johnny however, Prowl succeeded. He is that awesome.
  • When Omega Supreme is trying to get out of the cliff, some music from the movie can be heard.
  • Ramjet telling Omega Supreme that "his stabilizing servo is unbolted" is derived from the old "your shoe is untied" routine.

Miscellaneous trivia

TFA Headmaster unit facial expression changed

GASP!!!

  • The Headmaster unit even works on Decepticons, whose armor is much tougher than Bulkhead's. Where did Masterson get that cutting beam?
  • Speaking of the Headmaster unit, this is the first time its facial expression has changed. But it changed again in the next episode.
  • In the shots after Slipstream yells "Aim for the legs", Lugnut is shown firing his engine pods (which are his hands in robot mode) as missiles at Omega. Those probably weren't supposed to come off. However he's shown doing the same thing a minute later, and this time in robot mode, so it isn't a lone animation error. One has to wonder where he keeps all the spare hands. Certainly nothing up his sleeve...
  • Seriously, Bulkhead is the foremost expert on space bridges in the galaxy!? He must have had a lot of spare time on the energon farm. And... how did this never come up back when they were a space bridge repair crew? Perhaps he didn't want to appear as a know-it-all?
  • Prowl flunked out of ninja school, apparently. Rather, his sensei was killed before he completed his training, which explains why he was on space-bridge detail. This would be touched upon more in "Endgame, Part I".
  • Fans had been theorizing that the Autobot ship was Omega Supreme since quite literally the first episode.
  • Fans had also been theorizing that Sari had a li'l bit of robot in her since the first episode too! How silly!
  • Fans did not theorize that when this episode premiered on YTV AND on Cartoon Network, the announcers would happily yammer inanely over the closing credits sequence of Megatron and Starscream insulting each other in space. The Cartoon Network repeat the following day aired the credits without incident, thankfully.
  • It was said at BotCon 2008 that the entire final scene was improvised.
  • When Omega Supreme transforms, he uses the same transformation sound Ironhide used in the battle of Mission City when he was attacking Brawl.
  • In this episode, this is the first time that Shockwave speaks with his real accent while still in Autobot mode as Longarm, indicating that he has to consciously mask his voice in it.
  • Hmm, remember the last time Megatron was left lifeless in deep space.

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