Battle Stations is the nineteenth episode of Energon. It first aired in the United States on July 03, 2004 on Cartoon Network.
The Autobots take on Unicron, luring him into a running battle within the space bridge.
Kicker recaps the Miranda II's mission, Alpha Q's plans, and Rodimus's reappearance.
The Miranda II approaches Unicron, and her crew prepares for battle. The plan is to fry Unicron from the inside with the energon grid.
The Decepticons note the ship's approach; Megatron has Unicron open fire. The Autobots fire back. It doesn't seem to do any damage, but they continue forward and infiltrate Unicron. As they fly amid Unicron's inner workings, Megatron has Unicron stir, and huge panels threaten to crush the ship. Prime orders a withdrawal. The panels close in, damaging the energon grid antennae. The ship barely escapes; Unicron growls and glows with energy.
Misha can't raise the energon grid; the Omnicons report the antennae damage. Prime decides to lure Unicron into the space bridge. As the bridge activates and the Miranda II heads toward it with Unicron in pursuit, the Decepticons decide to attack. Prime and some others counter-attack. The ship enters the space bridge; Unicron follows, straining the gateway... but both make it through intact.
Aboard Unicron's head, Rodimus's contingent watch the battle. They're amazed to see Unicron's body just disappear. Alpha Q wonders if there's no way to stop Optimus from destroying Unicron. Rodimus says it's out of his hands. Ironhide stirs, calling out Kicker's name.
In the space bridge, Kicker responds to Ironhide's call, and tells the Omnicons to drop him off at "the sky bridge", where he and Ironhide got separated. In the midst of the battle, Prime tells him that though Ironhide's decision was a bad one, they can't help him now. Kicker says that he won't let his partner down, despite Misha's pleas.
Prime relents, despite Jetfire's protests. With Prime's blessing, Kicker rockets off the ship's hull toward a warp gate that suddenly appears in the space bridge warp field. Grindor comes with him.
Rodimus and the others note that Ironhide is awake; Alpha Q orders Scorponok to tend to him.
Kicker begins searching for Ironhide.... and is joined by Misha. She defends her actions, saying that Ironhide is her friend too.
The Decepticons suddenly remember that they can transform, and do, lending the unstoppable power of a flying space dump truck to their side. Optimus orders the Omnicons to send the Miranda II toward Unicron at full speed. As the battle continues, Unicron overtakes the ship, actually bumping into it. The ship approaches the exit gate. Prime orders everyone to re-board the ship, and contacts Rad, who says he's ready. Unicron, and all the combatants, arrive at Cybertron.
Rad activates Cybertron's energon grid. The towers open fire on Unicron. Megatron partially transforms Unicron to crush Prime, but an energon blast destroys his arms. The assault continues, inflicting further damage on Unicron. Megatron finally relents, and retreats.
Kicker has a sudden premonition, and warns Misha to take cover. Rodimus's ship emerges from a warp gate. Rodimus asks them to come with him; Kicker hesitantly agrees.
In the episode
English dub changes
(Numbers indicate order of appearance.)
"Remember, team! Our ultimate goal is to hit Unicron with everything we've got in order to put him out of commission for good."
- — Optimus Prime really does not trust his troops' memories.
"I can hardly wait to see the look on Prime's face when he's defeated."'
- — Megatron should really already know what that look will be.
"I gotta shake this cat. His yodeling is drivin' me nuts!"
- — Hot Shot, pursued by Snowcat and saying what we've all been thinking.
Lots of "huh!" and "uh!!" as the Autobots fire on their attackers.
- "Uh?": 8
- Stock footage: 2
- There's no time: 3
- We've gotta: 1
- We're a team: 1
- We're counting on you: 1
- "You can't be serious": 1
Lost in translation
- Continuing the dub's ceaseless efforts to paint Alpha Q as a villain, Kicker's recap focuses on Alpha Q's effort at reviving Unicron, rather than Megatron as in Superlink. The dub narration is also heavily padded out with a ton of extra verbage.
- Superlink opens with Prime noting that, if Unicron activates, they must immediately lure him into the space bridge. The dub doesn't bring up this plan until the middle of the battle, after Unicron is already active, and replaces it with some random "be ready to act on the double" chatter. Prime finally mentions the space bridge plan as if it were just a random thought: "What if we could lure it into the space bridge?"
- The dub further makes it sound like the plan is to fly inside Unicron and destroy him from within with Miranda II's energon grid. This is actually what seems to happen in the animation... yet in Superlink, the dialog seems to be referring to Cybertron's energon grid.
- Unicron makes some ridiculous growling noises as Megatron activates him. They're a dub addition.
- During the scene of the Decepticons watching the Autobots enter the space bridge, the dub omits a couple of key points. First, Starscream has a short line reacting to Tidal Wave's question, explaining why Snowcat hits him and speaks to him. Second, the impetus for the attack is that they know the Miranda II's energon grid is down. Third, the point of the attack is stop the Autobots from escaping. Fourth, Megatron's threat to devour Earth is omitted.
- As the Miranda II approaches the space bridge, several different dub lines make it seem like Prime's troops are off flying around in space, away from the ship. All are contradicted by the animation, which clearly shows Prime's group standing on the Miranda II's hull:
- "Stay close to the ship!" (originally a command to keep the Decepticons away from the ship)
- "Why are they taking their time getting to the space bridge?" (originally a complaint that the space bridge wasn't ready yet)
- "Hurry men! To the space bridge!" (originally an order for the ship to enter the space bridge.)
- The dub is missing some animation effects after Unicron enters the space bridge. Superlink features green glowing space behind the flying Decepticons, rather than normal space. In the dub, Alpha Q's holo-viewer-globe-thing is left out of one the subsequent shots, with a black void in its place.
- Kicker's statement about "the sky bridge" is dub nonsense. In Superlink, he requests the Omnicons to set up a "link-up gate" for him.
- Prime and Kicker's argument is a bit more coherent and forceful in Superlink, with Prime clearly ordering Kicker to forget Ironhide (since he left without orders), and Kicker clearly ignoring Prime's order. Jetfire's subsequent statement that they'll have to use force to stop Kicker is a dub insertion.
- Dub Scorponok says that Alpha Q has wanted to meet Ironhide for a while now. It should be the other way around, of course -- Ironhide wanted to meet Alpha Q.
- Strongarm's statement that "we're still pointing directly at Unicron", when Prime orders engines to full throttle, is dub nonsense. Both the plot and the animation show that they're fleeing from Unicron.
- Misha's responses to Kicker, when they meet up in space, are all dub alterations. In Superlink, she says she was worried she'd never see him again.
- Superlink uses a different still shot of Unicron after he emerges from the space bridge.
- Prime's Megatron... when will you learn is a dub addition, which rather disrupts the flow of Prime's obvious doubts about destroying Unicron.
- Jetfire reports "warp field dead ahead" as Unicron escapes, as if they've been looking for it and are flying toward it. He's supposed to be just reporting that a warp was detected, explaining how Unicron escaped.
Animation and/or technical glitches
- Grindor pretty much comes out of nowhere. He hasn't been seen at all since the Miranda II left Earth.
- Extremely-lots-of0-loads of firepower are exchanged in this episode, and not a single combatant is injured.
- Demolishor literally bounds out of Megatron's chamber to go attack the Autobots. However horrible his character arc may be, he's amusingly crazed.