Battle of the Asteroid Belt is the ninth episode of Energon. It first aired in the United States on April 9, 2004 on Cartoon Network.
The Decepticons manage to hit Asteroid City and Lunar City at the same time.
From Midway Gate Station 0-8, Carlos reports an unknown ship approaching Asteroid City. Hot Shot suspects it's the unknown assassin. Communications with Asteroid City are being jammed, and Prime suspects the enemy has set up a base nearby. Alpha Q reports Starscream's approach to Scorponok, and warns him not to mess things up again. Scorponok is pleased to learn that the Autobots and Megatron may be headed there too. In Asteroid City, Megatron demands more energon from his Terrorcons. He gives Demolishor a drubbing for not finding more, wondering if his time among the Autobots affected his work habits. Demolishor notes that they should have stayed at Lunar City, but that it's fortified now. Scorponok arrives and reports that Optimus & co. are headed for Lunar City. Megatron harshly asks Scorponok where he got the information; despite not sounding very convinced, Megs leads some troops off to attack Prime there, while leaving Scorponok to carry out the Asteroid City ambush as a test of loyalty. Alpha Q is pleased by this turn of events, and orders Scorponok to ensure Megatron's safety so Alpha Q can continue to use him. The Autobots arrive in the asteroid belt. Kicker directs the search effort; he and Ironhide note that Prime's been very much on his guard since the assassination incident on the moon. The Decepticons arrive at Lunar City and attack. The Omnicons evacuate the mines in a panic. Kicker identifies a particular asteroid. Hot Shot suddenly says something about Unicron and opens fire. After a moment, the others join in. Starscream meets with Scorponok, wondering why everyone keeps calling him "Starscream". Scorponok tells him that he's a warrior under his command, and that's the end of it. The Autobots aren't having much luck shooting the asteroid, which returns fire when Hot Shot goes to investigate. Alpha Q's ship emerges, but when the Autobots start to pursue, Starscream attacks. Prime holds him off, demanding answers. Starscream tells him he's under the command of Alpha Q, "supreme ruler of the universe". The others run into Scorponok, who makes short work of Jetfire and is ready to take on the rest. When the Autobots powerlink to engage, the ship departs, warping away, leaving Kicker adrift in space and freaking out, flashing back to his childhood. Prime learns that Alpha Q's mission is to revive Unicron, but Alpha Q contacts Starscream and has him retreat before he reveals anything further. The Decepticons arrive and watch how Scorponok handles himself against the Autobots. Prime retrieves Kicker, while Hot Shot, Inferno and Ironhide move in to rescue Jetfire. Hot Shot distracts Scorponok, while Prime and Ironhide get in close, and manage to capture Scorponok. They ask him who he's working for. Megatron arrives, and the teams trade words. The Autobots realize there's an energon seam nearby, which the Decepticons gleefully detonate, setting the whole asteroid off. Both teams retreat. Kicker freaks out, then passes out, as the fragments explode around him. The Autobot rescue him. The Autobots return to Earth, regretting that they couldn't save Lunar City. Prime reports to Primus that they've "destroyed the fortress that once was home to Unicron". "Meeka" finds Kicker, who vents about his own freak-outs and failures on the mission. Meeka reassures him and offers advice. They watch as the city's population starts returning, and a ship emerges from the space bridge. Alexis welcomes Dr. Jones to Ocean City, who responds in his own unique fashion. Meeting with the Autobots and the city's population, Dr. Jones proposes the creation of energon towers to protect Blizzard City, Desert City, Jungle City, and Ocean City, creating an impenetrable global energon grid.
In the episode
English dub changes
(Numbers indicate order of appearance.)
"I gave you a very simple task, Demolishor, and that's to find me my energon. But it seems while you were on the Autobots' side their worthless work habits rubbed off on you!"
"But sir, I'm trying my best! Maybe we should go back to Lunar City, rememeber? There was plenty left there -- uuuuahhhhg!"
"Yes! But the only problem is, since we were there last, Optimus fortified the place and it might be too dangerous!"
"Are you implying I can't defeat a few mindless Autobots?!"
"No, of course not! I just thought I'd point it out, that's all!"
- -- Megatron makes us wonder why Demolishor is so keen to work for him.
"Prove to me your loyalty. And if you succeed, maybe I'll have some new-found respect for you! ...but to be honest, I rather doubt it."
- -- Megatron isn't a Scorponok fan
Optimus: "Is that it?"
Kicker: "A hundred percent, Optimus."
Jetfire: "But that asteroid looks almost alive!"
Hot Shot: "Unicron?! But that's impossible, isn't it, sir?"
Optimus: "Hot Shot! What do you think you're doing?"
Kicker: Man, that's weird. As soon as Hot Shot mentioned the name Unicron, it's like everyone got all uptight. And I know that name from somewhere. Some kind of legendary gigantic Transformer who's the most powerful force in the universe. I think he's the one who attacked Cybertron.
Hot Shot: "NO, Optimus! We've gotta destroy him! Now's our chance."
Optimus Prime: "Open fire!"
[everyone opens fire]
- -- WHAT
Scorponok: "Not even close! ...Fire two!"
Hot Shot and Ironhide: "Whoah!"
Ironhide: "But that was!"
Hot Shot: "Cause his shots are spiked with energon!
Ironhide: "Are you serious?!"
- -- seriously. WHAT
"If you're trying to make me angry, you're doing a good job! But trust me, Junior... you wouldn't like me when I'm angry."
- -- Megatron channels Bruce Banner
"Aw no. The power from my energon star's almost dry. Another blast like that and we're done for!"
- -- Jetfire uses the royal we, or else thinks he's the only thing keeping the team alive.
"Planning?! How do you strategize against an enemy like Unicron?! ...If anybody figure it out Optimus can!"
- -- Kicker argues with himself
"I guess it's safe for everyone to come home. I suppose that's good news. And look! They're coming through the space bridge right now."
- -- Misha doesn't seem to understand why anyone would come back to Ocean City
"Some of you may find my ideas to be quite radical. However, after researching our strengths, I feel very confident in my proposal. My plan is for the creation of energon towers."
- -- Dr. Jones and Optimus Prime
Lost in translation
A heck of a lot.
- The Energon version of this episode utilizes a lot of unfinished animation which was properly completed for the Super Link broadcast. These half-formed scenes have in turn influenced the script, leading to something that doesn't make a lot of sense. Primarily, it should be noted that the Decepticons are not based on an asteroid—they have brought a mobile base, spawned from Unicron, into the Asteroid Belt, and are operating out of that. This is what is destroyed at the conclusion of the episode. However, the mobile base is almost completely missing from the unfinished animation used for the Energon version of the episode (see screenshots at right), and the rough footage used puts either an asteroid or absolutely nothing in its place. References to the base are basically removed from the episode, except now a lot of things don't make sense, such as Hot Shot's claim that "the asteroid" is like Unicron (since the base shares several features with him), Ironhide and Prime pushing asteroids into the ship's path to block its movement, and the final scene of Prime reporting to Primus about its destruction (which is further warped into it "being home to Unicron", instead of being created from him).
- Many of the background paintings from the unfinished animation in Energon are different from the finished Super Link version. They are not especially wrong—just different, and not as detailed. They are most noticeable in the closing scenes at Ocean City (for example, in the instance that puts the sky behind Kicker and Misha, instead of the rest of the building) and the Decepticons' visit to Lunar City, but they even extend to the layout of the clouds in the sky and the asteroids in space.
- In another case of background paintings gone awry, the Energon Towers are missing from the unfinished Energon animation (see right again), but the beams they generate are still present. As you can see, even the painting of Earth is different.
- Additionally, a whole scene is cut out of the Energon version when Kicker is caught in the explosion of the mobile base. After passing out, he has a hallucination of his protective suit being stripped from him, and an image of his father appearing before him. As he calls out to his father for help (which is something he would never do in real life—see, it's insightful), more images of Doctor Jones appear, and then fade into the Autobots as Kicker wakes up and realizes who is really surrounding him. It's not clear if this is a product of the unfinished episode, or if it was something actively cut for the dub.
- The Energon dub sees Demolishor claim that there's plenty of Energon at Asteroid City, but that they just haven't found it yet, when in Super Link, he states that there's none left. That's why the Decepticons go to Lunar City.
- The Decepticons are not planning any "ambush" at Asteroid City, they're just there for the Energon.
- Kicker claims that Optimus Prime has been wary and looking over his shoulder, when in Super Link, he says Optimus has been eager for a fight.
- "Uh?": 13
- Stock footage: 3
- We need/they want energon: 5
- It's time to: 4
Animation and/or technical glitches
- Hot Shot and Inferno both react and turn in response to Kicker thinking to himself.
- Both Optimus and Cyclonus say "regroup" when they mean "retreat".
- Why is the unknown ship between "Mars and Lunar City", instead of "Mars and the moon"?
- This time, she's "Meeka".
- Kicker is excruciating.
- Dr. Jones comes across as rather unhinged, touting the virtues of his energon tower grid against anyone "who dares attack us!!" and laughing hysterically after greeting Alexis (and leaving her with her arms crossed over her chest, looking very uncomfortable). This is pretty much how Doctor Jones is all the time in Super Link, constantly giggling and making strange remarks, and it was (thankfully) downplayed for the Energon dub (though whether through deliberate action or inept dubbing, it's hard to say). In the case of Alexis in this episode, Super Link saw Jones comment on how "mature and sexy" she'd grown up to be, and it's not hard to see why that got cut.
- The crowd reactions to Dr. Jones' proposal ("Ahhhhhhhhhhhhh.") are hilarious.