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Episode Review:

The Probe


Season 1


Episode written by: Craig Miller and Marv Wolfman


Reviewed by Pacerpaw


Cybertron thinks The Axalon may have ended up in another timezone and sends out several temporal probes to find them.

Meanwhile on ancient Earth, Optimus Primal, Rattrap, Dinobot and Cheetor return to the Axalon. It turns our that Rhinox has picked up signals from space and he tries to get trough the interference. Dinobot thinks it might 
be a Predacon trick or worse. But Rhinox ignores him and asks Rattrap to see if he can get a visual. The visual indicates it's a Cybertronian probe!
They all become very excited except Dinobot.  Rhinox sends a signal to it but it doesn't detect them and moves away.

Things look dark for a moment, then Rhinox says they might still have a chance to contact it before it leaves the system. Probes home in on the transwarp signatures of missing ships, but their Transwarp drive has been offline
since the crash. All they have to do is replicate the transwarp signature and rig up an array. Easier said than done!

Rhinox works on the signature while Optimus, Rattrap, Dinobot and Cheetor builds a long-range signal array and Tigatron watches their backs. The nearest clearzone is on Predacon territory, so they take a risk just being there.

The Tiger detects Waspinator and takes him down, but it turns out it was just a distraction. Tarantulas is out to test his latest invention, the Transformation lock-lens, and Tigatron is his first customer...er  victim!

Optimus over hears missile fire, so the big ape sends Cheetor to investigate.  Dinobot wants to go with him; Optimus says he must help finish the array.
Dinobot doesn't seem too thrilled about the prospect of going home. He thinks he'll be treated as a criminal, despite Optimus' assurances they won't let that happen.

Meanwhile, Tigatron has been hit by the lock lens and captured in a net by Tarantulas. Cheetor arrives, but is hit by it and netted as well.

Back at the Axalon, Rhinox has succeeded to replicate the signature. He hurries off to get it to the array in time.

On the site Optimus tries to contact Tigatron and Cheetor but gets nothing but static in response.

Nearby, Scorpinok monitors what they are doing and sends Terrorsaur with images to Megatron. When the Predacons watch it, Tarantulas says it looks like they are building an array. Megatron asks the felines what it is but they are not very responsive. Tarantulas detects an unidentified craft and Cheetor unintentionally reveals it's a probe and the Predacons leave. Tigatron has a plan to break free though...

Optimus, Dinobot and Rattrap has finished the array and all it needs is the Transwarp signature. Dinobot speculates whether Rhinox will make it there in time or not. Rattrap thinks he will. Just then Scorpinok attacks, hitting Dinobot and firing missiles at the array.
Optimus fires interceptors, taking out the rockets. Scorpinok prepares to shoot Optimus, but Rattrap shoots his claw off and Dinobot knocks him out with a blast from his eye lasers.  But the threat isn't over. Dinobot thinks the Predacons will be coming in numbers soon.

As on a cue, Terrorsaur arrives and attacks not long after. Only to retreat rather quickly.
But it turns out to be a diversion. Megatron, Blackarachnia and Tarantulas arrive and attack, accompanied by Tarantulas' new toy. Dinobot runs to attack Megatron, but is hit by the lock lens. Blackarachnia kicks him several times while he's stuck in raptor mode. 
Rattrap helps him by shooting her several times until she falls off the cliff edge. That doesn't stop Rattrap from getting hit by the lock lens though. Megatron laughs and blast them both.

Tarantulas attacks Optimus, but is blasted away. The Maximal is hit by the lock lens just then! Megatron fires a few missiles at the array and Optimus picks up a steel beam and takes a swing at them. He manages to save the array, but gets caught by a missile blast for his trouble and downed. Megatron pins him down with a foot on his back and gloats, tormenting the Maximal.
But someone taps the purple tyrant on the shoulder and it turns out to be Rhinox. The big green greets Megs by punching his lights out!

With the Predacon out of the count for the moment, Rhinox checks on his leader. Optimus tells him he'll be all right but that there isn't much time before the probe is out of range.
The engineer gets the array online and is just about to enter the code when the lock lens hits him! He drops the disc. No time is wasted though, he tells Optimus he must enter the code instead.
Megatron has revived and has other plans though! He blasts the array to bits, laughing. Optimus and Rhinox are sent flying by the explosion. Megatron moves in to finish them but just then Tigatron and Cheetor arrive, destroying the lens. Megatron leaves, but the Predacons have won the day. The Maximals just got out of it alive thanks to the felines.

Notes: It's nice to see an episode where the heroes do not win the day for a change. There were a few good character moments: Dinobot's speaking of the fate he thinks awaits him on Cybertron is one of them. Rattrap and Dinobot's teamwork. Optimus' desperate attempts to stop the Predacons from destroying the array. Tigatron and Cheetor's predicament and then charge to the rescue and Rhinox's concern for friends and mission. Oh, and Rhinox punching Megatron's lights out was sweet! The Transformation lock-lens thing reminds me of a similar one from a G1 episode so it's basically 'been there done that'.

Reviewed by Pacerpaw

Megs and...what's that behind him?

Thumbs up!



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