Episode Review: Beast Wars S01 Ep16 – “The Trigger, Part 1”

Beast Wars

Once again, we’re diving back into Beast Wars for another episode review. This time our attention turns to the show’s first two-parter since the series opener. So it’s time to check out episode 16 from season one, “The Trigger, Part 1” written by Bob Forward.

The Trigger, Part 1 – Synopsis

The story starts off in an icy wasteland, where we encounter Tigatron out on patrol. An unexplained tremour shakes the immediate area, starting rockslides from the nearby mountains… but it’s not a region prone to volcanic activity as Tigatron notes. Is something more sinister afoot?

When giving his regular report to the rest of the Maximals, Tigatron is spotted by Waspinator and Terrosaur who proceed to attack. Meanwhile, Rhinox makes a startling discovery – one of the planet’s two moons is artificial!

Back to the battle and as Tigatron wages war with the two Predacons, a strange cloud moves towards their position. The fight doesn’t go well for Tigatron and after a misfire from a rocket, the ice platform he is standing on is destroyed sending him falling to his impending doom… or so he believes.

Mystery In The Sky

We soon learn more details about what really happened to Tigatron and the secret of the cloud that he fell into. Inside is a mysterious floating island containing a strange obelisk at its centre. As expected, Megatron sees its potential as a weapon and sends his minions off to find out more. Airrazor, having reported seing a battered Waspinator and Terrorsaur reeling from the effects of the cloud, is sent to do the same.

Tigatron however, is finding the island peaceful at first, until it sees his presence in robot form as a threat and tries to attack him as well. Back into Beast Mode he tries to take in what the island has to offer its visitors without further disturbance. On arrival, Airrazor is attacked by the Predacons, and while trying to protect her, Tigatron sends out an emergency signal to the Maximals calling for help to stop the Predacons taking control of the island and the power that it contains…

Visual Gags

For what is meant to be a relatively serious episode, The Trigger is not without it’s lighter moments. During the attack on Tigatron at the start of the episode, Terrorsaur’s missile can be seen with a face painted on it (an image that can be seen later when it is revisited when Primal sees the remnants of the battle). There’s also a moment when the Maximals learn of Tigatron’s possible demise, and after their usual verbal sparring, Dinobot and Rattrap start making faces at each other! It’s a fun moment, but more importantly really adds more depth to both characters and the love/hate relationship they have with each other.

Overall

To be honest, considering the fact that this was written by Bob Forward, this was quite a weak episode and probably my least favourite of the season up to this point. Throughout the episode it generally felt as if there was a lot of padding and the episode was stretched out from something that could have taken half this time to give the story an epic two-part feeling. Certainly, the battle at the start could have been much shorter while still as impactful.

While TV shows (and movies) are often criticised for having unnecessary secondary plots that take up valuable screen time, I think in this case a side plot would have been a welcome respite. For a story that is going to run for 50 minutes spanning the two episodes, something else running alongside the island story would have helped immensely and kept the attention when the main plot started to drag.

Not one of the show’s finest, but hopefully this will be redeemed with the conclusion of the story.

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About Simon Plumbe 499 Articles
Husband, father and lifelong geek. Originally from the West Midlands, now spending my days in South Wales with my family and a house full of animals. Passionate about video games, especially retro gaming, the Commodore 64 and PlayStation Vita. Love pro wrestling, sci-fi and I'm an animal lover and vegetarian. Enjoyed this and my other articles? Why not buy me a coffee: http://ko-fi.com/simonplumbe