Tuesday, December 11, 2012

My Heroes: Just Prime

Love. Love is a something we all feel. It has various flavors. Love for family, love for country, love for a woman, ect. But today, I'm here to talk about a nerdy kind of love: franchise love.
Specifically, love of this franchise

I love the Transformers franchise. While it has some aspects I hate (see: BAYFORMERS), I still love the struggle of Autobots and Decepticons. It's a grand tale that can be a silly or as serious as the writers would want it to be. It's not always two factions of transforming vehicles, though. Sometimes you don't have a Peter Cullen voiced Peterbuilt truck. Sometimes...

3 faces of the fearless leader
... you need a gorilla to lead the forces of good.

That's right, my peeps. Today we're spotlighting Optimus Primal, heroic leader of the Maximals, in the category of My Heroes.

Centuries after the end of the Great War, a madman calling himself Megatron steals a golden disk containing the location of an Energon source: Earth. The Axalon, a scientific exploration ship, gives chase and ends up on a strange a primitive world (which was later revealed to be Earth in the prehistoric past). The planet would become a battlefield as the Predacons under Megatron's command carried out plans to wage war on Cybertron. The Maximals do what they can to stop them, with Optimus Primal takes the lead against the madness of Megatron.

I see Primal's still got  some of that berserker virus in him
 Primal, while having the same heroic streak of Optimus Prime, he's not the scarred war general Prime was. He's an explorer and an optimist, always ready to give (most) bots a chance to forsake their evil ways and join the side of right and virtue. He's also a fair leader, never asking any of his troops to do anything he wouldn't be willing to do. He's loyal a trusting to a fault, always ready to fight to save a friend. And he's also got the one thing all great heroes have: his ability to sacrifice himself for the greater good. Thanks to these factors, he's engendered loyalty from all under his command, even from the cynical, snarky Rattrap.

Throughout the Beast Wars, Optimus went through many changes. As he became a bit more of concerned with combat, he died and came back to life (with the help of Rhinox). He became a Transmetal. He merged his spark with Optimus Prime's in an attempt to save the future, and in doing so became Optimal Optimus.

Aka the Transformer I've coveted since 1998

All the while, he kept the cunning and trustworthy air of a bot who believes in his cause and his comrades.

Before we leave for the day, I'll mention Gary Chalk's voice acting for Optimus. He did a fantastic job portraying the big bot as a noble and wise leader with a bit of a casual buddy in him. That and the writing staff give Optimus a unique personality from his more famous predecessor. Where others might have  made him a Prime clone, they made him a character, and more importantly, a hero.

We will be coming back to the Beast Wars again. It just has far too many good characters for me not to talk about. I may even gt into the villains, since talking about Megatron's cunning and insaniy is something I'd love to do. But for now, let us put Optimus in the hallowed halls of My Heroes.

P.S. No, I will not be talking about Beast Machines. I don't want to.

Optimus Primal, Maximize!

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