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Terror! The Six Shadows is the eighth episode of Transformers: The Headmasters. It first aired in Japan on September 04, 1987 on Nippon TV.
The Trainbots take center stage when six shadowy figures attack countries all across the world.
The Trainbots have brought Daniel and Wheelie on a trip to their birthplace of Japan, but the fun is brought to a crashing halt when a video transmission cuts into a large-screen television on the side of a building, displaying a shadowy robotic figure who demands the entirety of Japan's energy, or he will destroy the country. Unable to identify the mystery mech, Ultra Magnus contacts Athenia, and Rodimus Prime and the Autobot Headmasters depart for Earth.
On Chaar, Cyclonus and Scourge are incensed that anyone other than the Decepticons would dare to steal Earth's energy, and vow to steal it from the unknown robot, despite a strange lack of interest in their plan from Galvatron and the Decepticon Headmasters. Heading to Earth, they receive no more help from a relaxing Sixshot.
Back on Earth, the Autobots have discovered that, in addition to Japan, five other countries have been threatened by shadowy beings - America by a giant gun, the USSR by a tank, Great Britain by a winged wolf, France by a jet and Canada by an armored car. The Trainbots, however, are not worried, convinced that their six-strong team can handle the six blackmailers, but their relaxation is interrupted by the discovery of Ratbat, spying on the group. Ratbat escapes and returns to Soundblaster, who reports back to the Decepticon base that the Autobot Headmasters have come to Earth. Cyclonus and Scourge, however, are more concerned with the revelation that there are six enemies to fight, even if Sixshot is not.
In London, the winged wolf shows itself, and the Headmasters and Metroplex head out, only to arrive too late. While they are there, however, New York is attacked by the giant gun, and both the Autobots and Cyclonus and Scourge are unable to get there in time to stop it. As Rodimus speculates that the blackmailers will hit Japan next, Daniel and the Trainbots enter - the brash young Headmasters are disgusted that they have been shopping in Tokyo while everyone else has been worried about the blackmailers. The Trainbots profess to have been patrolling Japan while Daniel went shopping, but an argument ensues, and when Daniel tries to intervene, Chromedome silences the boy, causing him to run from the room. Chromedome follows, seeking to make amends, and discovers Daniel playing with a ninja star that he purchased. Intrigued, Chromedome learns from Daniel of Earth's stories of ninjas, and their ability to appear in many places at once, and the stories stir up the memory of the time an energy-stealing ninja able to duplicate himself and transform into six shapes visited planet Master and killed his friend Abel. Realising that the ninja is definitely their blackmailer, Chromedome vows revenge.
Tokyo soon comes under attack from the robotic villain, and the Trainbots plead to be allowed to defend their homeland. Rodimus allows it, and the team heads for Earth, merging into their combined form of Raiden to thrash the blackmailer. The fight takes a new twist, however, when Cyclonus and Scourge arrive with Trypticon, and the Headmasters rush to the Trainbots' aid, fending off Trypticon while Raiden deals with the blackmailer's various forms. Transforming into jet mode, the villain flees, but is pursued by both the Autobots and Cyclonus and Scourge, and when he is finally brought down, his identity is finally revealed - Sixshot! Duplicating and transforming to wolf mode, Sixshot savages Raiden, but the Headmasters, seeking to avenge Abel, beat him down and send him retreating.
Back on Chaar, an enraged Galvatron - in on the plan the whole time - pummels Cyclonus and Scourge for their incompetence, while on Earth, the Headmasters and Trainbots reconcile, and all is well.
In the episode
English dub changes
(Numbers indicate order of appearance.)
Animation and/or technical glitches
- When Sixshot attacks Tokyo in robot mode in the final stages of the episode, rather than being entirely shrouded in shadow, as he has been up to this point, he is in full colour. Although it was always astonishingly obvious that he was Sixshot just based on his silhouette, this must surely be a mistake, as the shocked reaction to his true identity does not come until he is blasted from the sky some minutes later.
- London is depicted as a fog-shrouded forest that people ride through on horseback. For God's sake.
- Ultra Magnus is sporting his all-white antennae again in this episode.
- During the flashback, the mysteriously shadowed Sixshot is using Twincast's weapon, which is also mysteriously shadowed.
- For Transformers fans who already own his toy or otherwise know Sixshot's deal, it's really quite easy to forget the fact that this is the first time he has displayed his six-changing abilities in the series (indeed, it is the first time he has transformed at all, aside from the commercial bumper), hence the confusion of all the other characters. It also does not help the story that you can tell it's blatantly him from the second his robot-mode silhouette appears.
- In addition to debuting Sixshot's transformations, it also introduces his assorted ninja-related powers, including the ability to create numerous solid-light duplicates of himself (and, apparently, the ability to remain entirely cloaked in shadow, even in the middle of a shade-free, sun-baked desert). He'll be making good use of this power, and more, later in the series.
- The Trainbots merge into Raiden for the first time in this episode, but this is treated with shockingly little dramatic flourish, especially for Japan - in fact, absolutely nothing special is made of this first combination at all. Perhaps it's because we've been seeing them do it in the opening credits for eight episodes already, completely stifling any sense of surprise about the whole thing.
- Along with "Thief in the Night", this is another episode which proves that the Soviet Union's 1991 collapse didn't occur in the animated series continuity. It's almost like it was produced before that happened, or something!
- This episode originally aired in a double-bill with "Cybertron Is in Grave Danger, Part 1" on September 4th.
- What appears to be part of the Ark can be seen in an outside shot of Autobot City, although the ship was destroyed much earlier in "Five Faces of Darkness, Part 5".
- The Autobot's apparently can't tell that the giant robot with six forms that appears in shadow is the same individual as the Decepticon with six forms they've already met. And people wonder why they've been fighting that war with no success for over 4 million years.
- And yet, the Decepticons LOSE to these guys. What does that say about the Dcepticons intelligence level?
- A typical skill of the ninja is not the ability to clone themselves into six forms.
- People in Britain have access to cars now.