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The Transformers go to New York, and Tracks makes a friend.
- Japanese title: "Tracks the Warrior"
In New York City, two thugs carjack a familiar looking car, which also has a stereo sitting in the front seat. Heading to a chop shop, the punks try to sell the car...at which point the car turns into Tracks, and the stereo turns into Blaster. The chop shop head, Winston, tries to run, when Optimus Prime arrives. Winston vainly tries to shoot Optimus as the actual police arrive and arrest him.
The Autobots are helping the NYPD in a crime busting program, but their never ending war is also on Prime's mind. The Autobot leader is convinced that the Decepticons are nearby, plotting mischief, as they are prone to do, but the Autobots just can't find them. Heading back to Sparkplug Witwicky's garage, Tracks is enjoying the city so he decides to go for a drive, while Powerglide, Cosmos, Seaspray, Huffer and Hoist go out on patrol.
Tracks has a run-in with some more punks and scares them off, but one of the punks shoots a tire out, causing Tracks to crash. Unable to transform or call the garage, he is found by young Raoul, who drags him to an alley and plans to sell him to the Geddis brothers. Once he learns that Tracks is alive, he decides to fix him up, but he's still planning on selling him. Raoul accidentally cuts a wire that connects Tracks' computer to his body and silences the Autobot, but reconnects it. (That's one important wire.)
On patrol, Seaspray is disgusted with what the humans have dumped in the East River (aren't we all). Cosmos swoops down to inspect an accident, which Huffer and Hoist help clear up. They update Prime, who is getting worried about Tracks.
Back at the alley, Raoul is done, and is having second thoughts about selling Tracks. The Geddis brothers arrive and start to rough up Raoul, only for Tracks to transform and "ask" them to stop. The Geddis brothers flee, mentioning how shocked they are that a Transformer is attacking them. Tracks and Raoul follow, Tracks having deduced that they must be dealing with the Decepticons. They lose the Geddis brothers, but Raoul knows their main garage is down by the wharf. Heading there, Tracks and Raoul follow the legion of stolen cars.
Above them, Powerglide spots Starscream, and follows him. Powerglide and Cosmos chase the Air Commander into a human mall, only for Starscream to threaten the civilians and escape. Prime calculates that Starscream is heading for the Pine Barrens in New Jersey, and the Autobots roll out.
Somewhere in the Pine Barrens, the Geddis brothers are working with the Decepticons to provide them with 500 stolen cars. The Geddis brothers demand their million dollar payment. Megatron shows them the business end of the fusion cannon, and one of the brothers fires off a few shots at Megatron. A single blast from Megatron sends the Geddis brothers running. Tracks tries to contact Prime, but his radio is still damaged, so he decides to get up close and personal, seeing what Megatron intends. When he discovers that the Constructicons are intending to dismantle the cars, Tracks attempts to flee, only for the wire connecting his computer to sever again. Tracks is placed on the conveyor belt with the other cars ready for demolition.
Realizing Tracks is in danger, Raoul reveals himself to the Decepticons and says he placed a bomb in his car. Megatron allows him to disarm it, but instead Raoul reconnects the wire that reactivates Tracks and the pair bail. Soundwave sends Rumble and Ravage to hunt and kill, and Tracks is running out of power. He tells Raoul to run, but Sideswipe, Jazz and Bumblebee arrive and drive the two cassettes off.
Back at the garage, Tracks and Raoul fill the Autobots in on what's happening, just as the Autobots discover first-hand that the rebuilt cars are heading into New York. Prime, Blaster, and Ratchet defend the Washington Bridge, as Tracks, Bumblebee, Inferno, and Sideswipe defend the Chrysler Building, while Ironhide, Huffer, and Windcharger defend another part of the city.
Ratchet realizes that the drones are being remotely controlled, and that the Jersey base is the source. Blaster jams the control frequency, allowing the Autobots time to break off to attack the Decepticon base. Raoul tries to take a crow bar to the controls of the car drone factory. However, Megatron captures Raoul, and orders the Autobots to surrender. Raoul opens a panel on Megatron's chest, and uses a spray paint can to short circuit the Decepticon leader. Rumble orders a retreat back to the base before Starscream can declare himself the new leader. The Autobots destroy the factory, causing the drone army to shut down.
At Sparkplug's garage, the poor fleshling predicts that it will take weeks to restore the cars to their original configuration, even with Ratchet, Hoist, and Wheeljack's help. Raoul takes that as his cue to leave, only for Tracks to "volunteer" Raoul for repair duty.
Original airdate: October 30, 1985
Production number: 700-42
Written by: David Wise
(Numbers indicate order of appearance.)
"Look, I've been shot at, smashed up, and stolen three times tonight, and I'm in a most foul humor."
- —Tracks. Some days, it just doesn't pay to be an ambiguously gay car.
"First time in my life I try to steal a car I get one with a big mouth."
- —Raoul discovers karma.
"First floor: movie theater, shoe stores, and fast food restaurants."
- —Cosmos does his version of the overused elevator joke.
"They don't look all that smart to me. Ha! Their aim's not too good either."
"Maybe, but they've got us outnumbered. Fire!"
- —Blaster and Optimus Prime on the drones.
"I'll teach you to mess with the Chrysler Building!"
- —Tracks to the drones.
"Throw down your weapon, Prime!"
- —Megatron, about to experience his most humiliating defeat yet.
"We better get him back to headquarters."
- —Rumble, the new Sub-Commander, ordering a retreat at Megatron's injury.
"If you harm one hair on his head, I'll personally carve you into scrap metal!"
- —Tracks showing some love for Raoul. Awww
Animation and/or technical glitches
- When Hoist hauls the damaged '4WD' (which is actually a sedan car) away, he drives floating mid-air into the background.
- Starscream, Powerglide, and Cosmos have no trouble fitting in a shopping mall.
- When the Autobots drive up to Megatron's building, one of them drives over a and then stands on a gaping hole on the right side.
- When the Autobots attack Megatron's building, Soundwave is attacking the Decepticons with them.
- The Geddis brothers rough up Raul at midnight. Some time later, Powerglide and Cosmos harass Starscream in a shopping mall that's doing a pretty decent amount of business. Even in New York City, the malls don't stay open that late.
- Raoul would appear again in "Auto-Bop".
- Tracks comments on the cliche of loving New York, which is a reference to the famous New York advertising campaign. This ad was also seen earlier in the season in "City of Steel".
- In one infamous scene, Hoist is seen driving Huffer.
- The New York City of this episode, while still a cartoon, is a lot more grimy and grungy than the last time we saw it (some might say more true to life.) It's got stolen cars, gangs, punks, a river full of garbage, traffic jams, and an overall darkness that fits with the 1980s perception of the city.
- When the drones transformed back into cars, the sign on the theater is The Transformers: The Movie.
- In two different scenes (basically using the same background), a movie theater can be shown advertising The Transformers: The Movie.
- All the advanced technology at the Constructicons' disposal, technical know how to build transforming drones...and Scrapper is using a sword to slice the cars in half?
- If you don't blink, you can see 'Astoria' on one of the skyscrapers Powerglide flies by when he is reporting in to Prime. Astoria is the name of the girl he'll fall for in "The Girl Who Loved Powerglide".
- Megatron can be disabled by a can of spray-paint. And after finding this out, the Autobots still don't go around wielding spray-paint instead of guns.
- Rumble fails to notice the Autobot symbol on Tracks when he moves him.
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