Season 1 Episodes
Divide and Conquer
"No! Please! Not me! No!"
Assumption: 1/3rd of a camera.
The line Monzo and I always tread with this webpage is, "What is an Obscure Transformer?" Does that character count? Is he obscure? Is he a Transformer? Or in Warrior's case, "Is he a separate character?"
This is a hard one. Visually, Warrior is essentially just a central Reflector component. (Viewfinder, the component with a camera lens on his stomach. Sometimes he's drawn as a Spectro or Spyglass, but for the most part he's Viewfinder.) In fact, there is only thin evidence to suggest he's not a Reflector component.
With Warrior we also have the case of a character without a name. "Warrior" is his designation, his title. The fact that it's not a clear name complicates things further. If he'd been called "Lenscap" or "Redeye" or even "Harold" the question of whether he's an obscure would be over. Oh he's not the only obscure with only a title. There's the Man of Iron or the Navigator, or the like. But Warrior is probably the most... ambiguous.
Basically, the scene where he appears goes like this: Starscream and Rumble are discussing the fact that the energon-ship they're sending to Cybertron needs to be piloted to survive the Space Bridge journey. Rumble and Starscream both refuse to go, so they look for a volunteer. They turn towards a Viewfinder-style Reflector component standing nearby, and Starscream grabs him and puts him into the ship, saying, "Have a nice journey, warrior." This, of course, is where Warrior's title comes from.
This is also the first piece of evidence that Warrior is a different character to Reflector. It's hardly definitive by itself, but it is a start.
We know there are generic Transformers who look just like Reflector components, coloured just the same. We also know that identical transformers, down to the colouring, are not always the same Transformers. This is demonstrated in the lineups of generic Transformers in More the Meets the Eye, pt 3. Just take a look at this picture:
Any one of those Viewfinders could be Warrior.
When Warrior arrives on Cybertron that is where he stays. Later on Earth you see all three of Reflector's components together fighting the Autobots, suggesting that Warrior is not one of them.
Then there's his voice, and his voice is probably the strongest point. Reflector is Chris Latta. Even with the echoing quality of his triple-voice there is no mistaking Chris Latta. Warrior is not Chris Latta. He sounds (and Monzo and I agree on this) a lot like Corey Burton. But whoever he is there is one thing for sure... he isn't Chris Latta.
So what you have in this scene is a Reflector-robot whose voice doesn't echo like Reflector's, and who is Corey Burton, not Chris Latta. Not only that, he doesn't sound like the emotionless cipher that is Chris Latta's Reflector.
On the cartoon, Reflector had no characterization - his voice was neutral, in triplicate. He is without a doubt Chris Latta's most bland character. But is Warrior bland? No. He's emotional. He's scared out of his wits, terrified for his life, and he does it in one, independent voice. It's too bad he got no other dialogue, so one could hear him when he's not scared. Yet even when he's not speaking he has more reactions and expressions than your average, totally neutral, Reflector robot.
A generic robot who looks just like Reflector's Viewfinder unit, yet who sounds like Corey Burton with only five more minutes to live. This, then, is the obscure Decepticon known as Warrior.
In the early stages of Space Bridge technology if you put things in the Space Bridge that couldn't navigate the bridge, they'd get lost and not make it to Cybertron. For that reason, in the early days Energon was transported via shuttles piloted by rather reluctant pilots.
We first meet Warrior when he's loading one of these shuttles with energon. The shuttle looks just like this:
Arriving on Cybertron safely (despite his clear fears that he wouldn't), Warrior helped Shockwave to unload the ship. (Shockwave really needs to get more help, he's getting old and Cybertron's getting a bit big for him to handle on his own.)
Then the Autobots showed up, and Ironhide glued Warrior and Shockwave's feet to the floor. After a while, Shockwave freed Warrior, just in time for the two of them to fail to stop the Autobots from heading right back to Earth on the Space Bridge.
Thus ends Warrior's illustrious career.
He wasn't too bright, or too strong (Starscream lifted him up like a ragdoll). Not sure about his endurance, either, because Shockwave seemed to think he'd hurt himself if he tried to break out of Ironhide's goo on his own.
He might have an okay skill stat, though. After all, he pilots his way over the Space Bridge quite well.
Funny thing is, Reflector's toy doesn't look nearly enough like the cartoon version of Reflector to be a good representation of Warrior. Certainly the Viewfinder component barely resembles Warrior at all. None of the colours are right, he has the lens, and sort of the right chest, but apart from that, not much else is the same.
The only other toy is, of course, the Reflector Decoy. This decoy is a mix of the cartoon model with some additional toy features. He also has an arm-mounted cannon. This Decoy is a much close representation than the actual Reflector toy, and even though he's pretty much just purple, he has a closer colour scheme than the original toy too.
It's Warrior, dude. He's like Reflector, without the extra flavours and with goo on his feet. The dude's terrified of the Space Bridge, and Starscream don't care... and... uh...
I like him. Hell, why not? I think I'll give the floor to Monzo now. I'm sure he has a lot to say on this subject as well.
As I've pointed out elsewhere on this site, "Divide and
Conquer" was one of a handful of Transformers eps I had on tape during my
childhood until the Sci-Fi Channel rebroadcasts in the early/mid-'90s. As it
is, I've come to see it as one of my favorite episodes of Season 1, and it may
rank high on my Top Ten G1 Episodes list if I had ever wasted time to compile
such a thing.
The highlights? Starscream being treacherous (but
not blatantly so), the great generic Rainmakers, the music... and Warrior.
It's like... any of you Decepticon sympathizers.
LISTEN to the fear in Warrior's voice, and look at his expression. He is not
gung-ho about advancing Decepticon scientific theories. He's one step away
from begging Starscream not to shoot his wife and kids. It honestly sounded
like he was afraid he was going to die, and Starscream just tosses him in to
the ship and tells him to have a nice trip.
Of course, he ends up living, but stuck on a planet with Cartoon Shockwave. That may as well have been death, unless Warrior was a big fan of the MCP. -- Monzo
Master Control Program. From TRON.
Oh. TRON. Of course.
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