Beast Wars Retrospective 1x13 Dark Designs

Episode Outline
The Maximals are ambushed on a routine Energon resupplying mission by the Predacons. It seems that the Predacons have the Maximals at a disadvantage due to having the higher ground, but quick thinking from Rhinox causes a rockslide which immobilises them and allows Optimus and his comrades to escape. In light of this Megatron realises that he has underestimated Rhinox up to now, and decides that he could use someone like Rhinox.

Tarantulas is dispatched to capture the Maximal, and after trapping him in one of his webs he takes him to the Darksyde to undergo reprogramming under his new machine, the “Transmuter”. The Maximals are all horrified at the prospect of Rhinox being not just in Megatron’s clutches, but also being a Predacon. Optimus however, doesn’t elect to launch a rescue mission and instead opts to leave Rhinox onboard the Darksyde and monitor his progress by his com-link.

It turns out that the Predacon Rhinox has plans of his own, and no intention of serving Megatron. He slowly causes chaos at the Predacon base, attempting to destabilise the situation and overthrow Megatron. His plan however is discovered by Megatron, who just manages to trick Rhinox into stepping back into the Transmuter so he can be reprogrammed back to being a Maximal. At this moment the Maximals launch their rescue, saving Rhinox whilst the Predacons are in disarray.

My Thoughts
This is a great little episode. It’s nice to see Rhinox in the spotlight, even if he’s ‘evil’. The explanation for his scheming is that being reprogrammed as a Predacon ramps his aggression off the scale, meaning that he’s not content to serve anybody. It’s a nice idea which shows just how intelligent and skilful Rhinox actually is. The contrast between the Predacon version of him and his normal self couldn’t be more apparent, with the peaceful flower loving bot becoming a deadly schemer who gleefully wrecks Scorponok just to enact his plan. The change of colour scheme to show that Rhinox is now ‘evil’ is a bit odd, but a nice touch to help distinguish him from his usual self.

Of course with another chance to overthrow Megatron, Terrorsaur attempts to get in on the act. He’s shot down by Rhinox, who then later uses Terrorsaur’s willingness to betray Megatron to his advantage in a great scene, in which he manipulates Scorponok and Terrorsaur into fighting each other in order to save himself from being trapped between the two and Megatron.

All in all, this was a really enjoyable little episode. Once again, not much development on the main storyline, but it’s a good episode in rounding out Rhinox’s character some more.

Notable Moments
- First time other characters (Optimus and Rhinox) mock Megatron by imitating his signature yessss.
- After Waspinator’s smash on the head he believes he is the old Decepticon Shrapnel, delivering the rest of his dialogue like the old Decepticon. Before he’s knocked out, he also utters the classic “More than meets the eye” slogan.  

  1. sjhawkins posted this