This weekend was an eventful one for me. I checked out M. Night Shyamalamadingdong’s new horror flick, The Visit (meh), and spent the remainder of the time watching two seasons of Transformers: Prime. I have to say, I could’ve saved myself $10 if I’d just stayed home and watched Prime instead of giving misplaced hope to the floundering career of Shyamalan.
Without a doubt, Transformers: Prime has got to be one of the best iterations of the franchise, thus far. I started casually watching season 1 on Netflix while working on other projects, but quickly found myself drawn into the show.
As far as characterization goes, Prime does a better job of giving each character a unique voice than the original 80s series. I know I’m definitely going to get some flack from my buddy Aaron, who’s a die-hard original cartoon series fan, but it’s true – this new series has an excellent team of writers who made each line of dialogue rich with personality. My favorite, by far, is Starscream. Instead of using the material from the first toon, the Prime storyline features more of the Beast Wars series’ concept for the sniveling side-kick to Megatron. So that makes him more of a formidable and cool character than some of his more whiny personas from the past.
The story is simply epic by Transformers standards. And it makes sense (*cough* Michael Bay *cough*). The first few episodes are a bit slow while the Autobots and Decepticons setup base and begin setting the scene for the more hardcore storyarcs to come. Somewhere around the middle of the first season things start to come together and develop into a more cohesive and longterm story. That’s fairly typical with new shows since there’s never a guarantee for a budget after the first season; writers are forced to put out material that’s more flashy than grounded for the sake of drawing in viewers. But once Prime hits its stride, it becomes addicting. I couldn’t stop watching until I knew how the next episode would continue the story.
I give Transformers: Prime a 9/10 rating. The only reason I didn’t give this show a perfect score is because there are moments that focus too much on how the immaturity of the children paired with the Autobots gets them into trouble. It becomes a bit annoying at times, but not enough to ruin the overall feel of the show.