|Beast Machines: Transformers|
Beast Machines Transformers complete series DVD boxset
|Also known as||Beast Machines: Battle for the Spark (Season 2)|
|Country of origin|
|No. of seasons||2|
|No. of episodes||26|
|Executive||Christopher J. Brough|
|Running time||21 minutes|
|Picture format||480i (SDTV)|
|Original release||September 18, 1999- November 18, 2000|
|Preceded by||Beast Wars: Transformers|
Beast Machines: Transformers is an American-Canadian animated television series produced by Mainframe Entertainment. Hasbro has the full distribution rights to the show as of 2011. It was a direct sequel to Beast Wars, taking place within the continuity of the original Transformers series. The show ran for two seasons, airing on YTV and Fox Kids from 1999 to 2000. Of the Transformers animated series produced in North America, Beast Machines was the only one to have been completely conceptualized and outlined in advance, lending it a more serialized and linear storyline than the others. Prior to Transformers: Prime in 2010, Beast Machines was also the last, and second only entirely computer-animated Transformers series produced, along with its predecessor Beast Wars. The Beast Machines intro theme was "Phat Planet", by Leftfield.
The Maximals are back on Cybertron, but have lost their memories of the Beast Wars saga. In addition, they are infected by a virus that prevents them from transforming back to their robot forms; it also reverted trans-metals Optimus, Cheetor, Rattrap and Blackarachnia back to their original forms. They are also being hunted by mindless Vehicon drones. Finding the Oracle underneath the city, the Maximals are turned into techno-organics to survive the virus; now they must master their emotions in order to transform again. The Maximals soon learn that Megatron got free mid-flight during their time travel back to the future, ending up there long before they showed up; he conquered the planet.
The show ran for two seasons with a total of 26 episodes (13 in each season). The first season begins shortly after the events of the third season of Beast Wars, and the second season begins immediately after the first season. The second season was subtitled Battle for the Spark.
Beast Machines: Transformers (Episodes # 1-5)
Canada / United States
Beast Machines: Transformers - The Complete Series
Canada / United States
Beast Machines - Transformers: Series 1
Beast Machines - Transformers: Series 2
Beast Machines - Transformers: Season 1 - Volumes 1 & 2
Classification: PG (Parental Guidance)
Beast Machines - Transformers: Season 2 - Volumes 1 & 2
Written into a special edition comic book was a character by the name of Primal Prime. Appearing only in this book, he is a side character to the Beast Machines story and was later written into the toy lines of both Beast Machines and Transformers: Universe. In the Universe story line he eventually gains a new body, which combined with Apelinq to create Sentinel Maximus.
The head writers used to post and answer questions on a message board known as Bottalk.
The Hasbro toys for Beast Machines are infamous for the fact that many bear little resemblance to the characters on the show, in both shape and color. They were also scaled out of proportion to each other. The reason for this was that although basic concept sketches were made of the major characters, the show creators and toy creators developed the characters independently from that point in the first year. After the first year of toys was released, a number of slightly more show-accurate toys were released.
Many of the characters created as toys never made it on the television series, although some did appear in the comic books. Oddly, the transforming plant Botanica from the television series was not made into a toy for any of the related toy lines.
Another characteristic of this toy line was its packaging. Unlike other Transformers lines, wherein each toy had a photo or illustration of themselves on the front of the packaging, almost all Beast Machines packages had an illustration of Cheetor on the front - regardless of character or faction. The one exception was Nightscream.
The toys released in the Beast Wars Returns (a release of Beast Machines in Japan) toy line by Takara were recolored to more closely resemble the show colors. Molds from the drones in the Vehicon Army, which bore more resemblance to the Vehicon Generals, were recolored and used as the Vehicon Generals instead in the Beast Wars Returns toy line.
A line of simple McDonald's Beast Machines toys was sold which did look more like the show characters, and this line was recolored for release in other countries by other fast food restaurants.
A number toy sub-groups didn't make it into the animated series, but had small stories on their toy boxes.
A number of characters appeared in the Beast Machines toy line who didn't make appearances in the television series. These included:
After Beast Machines ended, Hasbro planned a follow-up series called Transtech. The series was supposed to bring back some of the characters who died in Beast Wars along with some characters from the original 1980s cartoon, all in new, organic-looking bodies, with vehicle alternate modes instead of the animals used in Beast Machines. Many concept sketches and even a few toy prototypes were made, but Hasbro scrapped the idea, bringing Car Robots to American markets as a placeholder until Transformers Armada.
Concept sketches or prototype toys have been seen for Blackarachnia, Cheetor, Depth Charge, Megatron, Nightscream, Optimus Prime, Scavenger, Shockwave, Soundwave, Starscream and a new character called Immorticon. There were also rumors of a Transtech Dinobot.
The storyline of Beast Machines is continued in the short-lived comic book Transformers: Universe by 3H Publishing, which has stories taking place during the second season of Beast Machines (In the Transformers: Wreckers comic) and after the Beast Machines story (in the Transformers: Universe comic).
According to commentary of the Beast Machines DVD the series was initially to be called Beast Hunters. The character Jetstorm was initially called Skybolt, but the writers changed the name to make it harder to theorize Silverbolt's connection to the Vehicon. The first five episodes of the series were filed with the name Skybolt, and later edited to reflect the change. At one point, Thrust was going to be carrying Silverbolt's spark, but the writers decided to have him carry Waspinator's spark instead on a whim. In the episode Home Soil, the character Thrust made a gesture similar to the middle finger to Optimus while racing to the crashed ship and in the episode "Savage Noble", Thrust also made a gesture similar to the middle finger to Cheetor when they briefly banded together to search for Savage. In the flashback featuring Waspinator, the heads of Inferno and Quickstrike make cameo appearances, as do the pre-humans Hammer, Jack, Una and others.