Monday, January 24, 2011

Metatron

I don't know if you're familiar with the Transformers cartoon from the early to mid 1980s. It was basically about robots from another planet that, upon arriving on earth, took on the ability to transform into various local vehicles. The good guys, the Autobots, could turn into automobiles (not sure what Auto means on Cybertron). The villains, the Decepticons, could turn into airplanes. There were some exceptions. For example, Soundwave could turn into a cassette player.

The most bizarre Transformer of all time is one of the most popular. Megatron was the leader of the Decepticons. While his men at arms were transforming into fighter jets, he could transform into a gun. Now, there are two problems with this, one logistical and one scientific. Every Decepticon had built into laser blasters. Having a laser gun was redundant. It's like putting a propeller on an eagle. There may be some tactical advantages, but ultimately you don't need it. Perhaps Megatron's gun mode is more powerful than a standard laser, but the regular lasers are lethal, so there's no need for overkill.

Far more baffling, and this was true even 25+ years ago, deals entirely with the realm of physics. Megatron is a large being. He is taller, in fact, that his subordinate, Starscream. Megatron can somehow transform into a gun that fits into Starscream's hand. How does that work?

Somewhere, a group of writers were sitting around in their Lacoste shirts and over the calf socks and saying, "you know what would be awesome?" "What?," someone would ask. "If the leader of the Decepticons turned into a pistol." "Man, that would be great," would come the response, "but how would that work? He's too big."

Then, from the far end of the table, the head writer leans forward, stubs out his Moore cigarette, and says, "Gentlemen, first we take the laws of physics and we destroy them. How can mass disappear? How can his brain shrink and still work? These are the wrong questions. The questions you should be asking is, how fucking awesome is this? How bloody God damn LOUD should the patchoo-patchoo noises he makes BE? THOSE are the questions that should be passing through your lips like a greased up FETUS through the VAGINAL LIPS of a CRACK WHORE."

And that's how Megatron was born. So to speak.



And that's not even touching on how his mouth moves.