The Final Showdown on Earth (Part 2) is the thirty-fifth and last episode of Transformers: The Headmasters. It first aired in Japan on March 25, 1988 on Nippon TV.
With Death Towers all over the planet releasing energy that threatens to tear the Earth apart, everything comes down to a climactic battle between the assembled forces of the Autobots and Decepticons at the North Pole, where Fortress Maximus and Scorponok have their final showdown!
Metroplex arrives at Battleship Maximus to inform the Autobots of the emergence of the third Death Tower in Washington. Mapping out the locations of the existing towers, Fortress speculates on the location of the fourth tower, and they theorise that the Decepticons may be hiding beneath the Mediterranean Ocean. Highbrow goes one better, putting the pieces of the puzzle together - according to Earth legends, the ancient continent of Lemuria was said to have sunk beneath the Indian Ocean, and could be where the Decepticons are getting the crysmag metal used to make the Death Towers. Just then, a report comes in from Punch, revealing that Scorponok is outfitting the various Death Towers with energy induction boosters to amplify their effects, and that the fourth tower is about to be set up in Cairo, Egypt. Battleship Maximus immediately lifts off for Egypt.
Meanwhile, Sixshot is already in Egypt, examining the area. And he's not the only Decepticon around - Soundblaster is stationed in the Alps, and reports to Apeface, standing guard by a pyramid, that Battleship Maximus is approaching. Apeface alerts Scorponok, and the Decepticon Headmasters are sent out to attack. They clash with the Autobot Headmasters on the hull of Maximus, revealing their new "Trio Formation" - they transform to beast mode and stack on top of each other like a totem pole. The Autobots are not quite sure what to make of it, but any worries are taken care of when Apeface and Snapdragon pile on top of the formation, unbalancing it; Fortress then fires Maximus's boosters, and the sudden jolt sends the villains toppling off. At that point, the fourth Death Tower emerges!
In San Francisco, while Daniel is talking with his injured mother, Wheelie reports that Fortress has called for all available Autobots. Spike tells Daniel that he will take care of Carly, and not to be distracted from the task before him, and Daniel and Wheelie head off.
Back in Egypt, Scorponok directs Wingspan and Pounce, seemingly repaired after their clash with Sixshot, in setting the energy induction booster into the Death Tower. With this task accomplished, the tower begins to surge violently with energy, and Scorponok emerges from beneath the desert sands and orders the Decepticons to climb aboard. Cackling that even Fortress has a role in his plan, Scorponok lifts off, promising to see the Autobots at the North Pole. Fortress transforms into Fortress Maximus and attempts to stop him, but a tendril of energy from the Death Tower blasts him out of the sky. Sixshot, however, is able to stay on Scorponok's tail, and follows him as he dives deep into the Indian Ocean and vanishes into the inky depths. Sixshot finds himself caught up in a sub-aquatic whirlpool, and when he is disgorged, is stunned to discover that he has been swept into the undersea ruins of Lemuria! Scorponok is stunned to see Sixshot alive, but maintains his facade of happiness at the ninja's safe return, and shows him the furnace that is smelting the crysmag metal. After Scorponok explains that the Earth will be destroyed thanks to the energy-accumulating satellite he has placed in orbit, Sixshot bids him farewell, and Scorponok accuses him of scheming to betray him. Scorponok opens fire on the ninja, but his blast passes harmlessly through him - he has merely fired upon one of Sixshot's hologram duplicates, and the true Sixshot escapes.
With energy emissions from all the Death Towers increasing, and a fifth Death Tower appearing at the South Pole, Earth is encircled by a field of energy that is wreaking havoc with the natural balance of the planet. Following Scorponok's last words, Fortress pilots Battleship Maximus to the North Pole, with the whole Autobot army in tow. Unsurprisingly, the entire Decepticon army is waiting for them, with a dais of inactive crysmag metal behind them. A hail of laser fire heralds the beginning of a colossal battle - Battleship Maximus collides with the Zarak Shield, the Targetmasters square off, Twincast and his cassettes save Chromedome and Hardhead from Mindwipe's hypnosis, and Fortress becomes Fortress Maximus to confront Scorponok directly. As the two giant foes grapple, Scorponok distracts Maximus by telling him to watch out for their fortress overhead - a complete lie that Maximus falls straight into, allowing Scorponok to deprive him of the Master Sword and knock him aside. Wheelie and Daniel come to his aid, distracting Scorponok with a few blasts of their own and allowing Maximus to regain his sword, but then Battletrap attacks the two youths. A laser beam comes out of nowhere to strike Battletrap, who is then tackled by Defensor; Daniel realizes that Sixshot has come to their rescue, but the ninja refuses to show himself, until Menasor attempts to stomp Daniel, forcing Sixshot to save him. Sixshot tells Daniel to take care of himself, and vanishes once more.
Meanwhile, Fortress Maximus and Scorponok's duel has moved, allowing Scorponok to position himself on the crysmag metal dais. As Fortress leaps at his opponent, a glint of light in the sky heralds the arrival overhead of the energy-absorbing satellite, which discharges its energy back into the dais, completing the circuit and threatening to tear the Earth apart. With both Maximus and Scorponok caught in the beam, Scorponok disconnects from his Transtector, retreating to the fringes of Earth's atmosphere with the rest of the Decepticons to watch. The Headmasters attempt to power up their commander, entering Head Formation and sending their energy to him, but it is not enough, and Fortress begins to buckle. Daniel recalls Sixshot telling him about the strong bond of friendship the Autobots have, and hits upon the idea to have all the Autobots lend Maximus their strength. Wheelie calls out to the assembled Autobot forces, and they all link arms in a ring around the Headmasters - thus combined in "Final Formation," the Headmasters channel the combined energy of the entire Autobot army into Fortress Maximus. Supercharged by his troops, Fortress Maximus uses the Master Sword to redirect the energy beam back into the satellite, destroying it, much to the shock of the watching Decepticons. Then, with a single slash of his might blade, Fortress Maximus destroys the Zarak Shield and bisects Scorponok's Transtector, which explodes into smithereens.
Time passes. With the victory at the North Pole, the Decepticon forces have finally been broken, and they withdraw from Earth, but they still pose a threat to the other planets in the universe, and it is the duty of the Autobots to pursue them and stop them. As the entirety of the Autobots forces gather to leave Earth for good, Fortress, the Headmasters and Wheelie say goodbye to Daniel, Spike and Carly. The farewell between Daniel and Wheelie is especially tearful, and the two vow to see each other again. Battleship Maximus lifts off, and Daniel cries out his goodbyes, which echo through the air as the Autobots vanish into the setting sun.
In the episode
English dub changes
(Numbers indicate order of appearance.)
Animation and/or technical glitches
- When Fortress Maximus lifts the Master Sword after striking, the lowest segment of the blade has orange and yellow stripes on it that it's never had before. These details actually are on the toy of the sword, but they've not appeared in the cartoon before!
- Seems there were a few crossed wires regarding the Decepticon attacks last episode. Here, the injured Carly is seen being carried off the Queen World luxury liner - except that she was hurt in a plane crash caused by the energy discharge from the Death Towers, and the Queen World sank as a direct result of a Decepticon attack. Whoops!
- Despite it seeming very much like Sixshot killed them last episode (knocking their heads off, with wires and circuits lying all over the place), Wingspan and Pounce are up and about with no ill effects here.
- The Decepticons all apparently disappeared from Earth back in "Miraculous Warriors, Targetmasters (Part 1)," but we only ever saw a small number of them in the intervening episodes. This episode reveals that the characters that we have not seen since then, like Scourge, Menasor and Devastator, have been hiding in Lemuria, preparing for Scorponok's plan.
- In the RTM1 dub of this episode, the "Trio Formation" performed by the Decepticon Headmasters is inexplicably (even for the RTM1 dub) referred to as the "Buddha Formation."
- According to Transformers: Generations, as noted above, this episode aired on the 28th of March. This would make it the only The Headmasters episode to air on a day other than the show's normal Friday, being screened on the following Monday, only three days after Part 1.
- After the closing scene of the episode, but before the credits, the episode ends with the theme tune playing alongside a "clean" version of the opening sequence (devoid of on-screen text). The Decepticons do not flicker in this segment, as they have been doing in the actual opening since "Explosion on Mars!! Maximus Is in Danger," and a shot from the conclusion of Fortress Maximus's transformation sequence is added to the end of the segment.
- The eighth and final chapter of the manga version of The Headmasters published in TV Magazine consist of an additional scene that fits into this episode, between the destruction of Scorponok's Transtector, but before the Autobots leave Earth. In this short story, Soundblaster makes a last ditch attack against Chromedome, Spike, Carly, Daniel and Wheelie with Slugfest and Overkill (who did not appear in the Headmasters anime at all), Rodimus Prime returns, having been gone since "Cybertron Is in Grave Danger, Part 2," and Sixshot plans to travel to many different planets, to learn new transformations. Comments made by Rodimus about humans and Transformers working and evolving together, Sixshot's desire to "transform" into a human, and the narratives promise that Earth will not go unguarded all seem to foreshadow the next series, Super-God Masterforce.
- A special prose "epilogue" published in TV Magazine filled in the gap between The Headmasters and Super-God Masterforce, explaining that, after the events of this episode, the conflict shifted to a space-based war between the two sides, involving exchanges between Chaar and Athenia. The advanced technology of planet Master formed the backbone of this conflict, but the destruction of the space bridge back in "Daniel Faces His Biggest Crisis Ever!!" meant that transport to and from the Earth were severely limited, hence the large role played by humans in Masterforce.
- The Latin American dub for this episode is just crazy, as if the voice actors thought that nobody was watching the show anymore, since they use the oportunity to have everybody either making jokes or acting out of character, like Weirdwolf being "weird" for once (and I mean gay, no kidding!!), even breaking the "fourth wall" when mentioning staff from the dubbing studio; also, the narrator changed his voice from a energetic person to an old one, of course, there WERE people seeing the show,(and still seeing it through Masterforce and Victory). At least they didn't make Wheelie rhyme.