Flobsters on Parade is the fourth episode of the first season of Transformers: Rescue Bots.
Cody Burns and Frankie Greene are attending the Lobster and Technology Festival. While Cody prefers the lobsters, Frankie is looking forward to the technology parade, in which she'll get to ride on her dad's float. Discussing which is better, they find Chief Burns and Doc Greene inflating a helium lobster balloon. Frankie scoffs at the fact that the Rescue Bots are taking part on the parade too, but at that moment a strong gust of wind causes the balloon's cables to snap. One catches Doc Greene's leg, and as the balloon drifts away, he's taken with it. The others give chase, collecting Chase along the way, but even the Autobot is unable to save Doc Greene from being whisked away.
Back at the fire station, the other Rescue Bots and the rest of the Burns family get the alert and roll out. Doc Greene manages to catch on to a building and, following Chief Burns's suggestion, unties the rope from his ankle, freeing himself from the balloon. While Kade and Heatwave rescue the Doc from the building, Blades and Dani hook the balloon and bring it back down to earth. As the Doc thanks Kade, Heatwave makes a throat-clearing noise, and Chief Burns asks Cody to remind the bots that they're supposed to be pretending to be robots.
As Cody instructs the Rescue Bots again, he notices Heatwave is missing. Boulder is also distracted by a bird out the window, so Cody holds an impromptu game of "Simon Says" to help them get acting like robots. Heatwave picks that moment to appear, announcing he's not going to be in the parade because he hates acting like a robot and being climbed all over by kids. Thus when the rest of the Burns family arrives to leave for the parade, Heatwave fakes an engine problem. Kade's just happy not to have to deal with Heatwave, so the others head out without him. They arrive at the parade, where Doc Greene is filling balloons with his latest invention, floatium, which is a more controllable version of helium. The parade soon starts, with the Rescue Bots marching along behind the floats, though Boulder has to be shushed by Chase. Back at base, Heatwave watches the parade on TV and is irritated by the reporter's comments.
Back at the fairgrounds, a hungry fair-goer accidentally knocks the tank of floatium into the lobster tank and the lobsters inside immediately begin floating out of the tank. After the Rescue Bots return to the square, Coby points out the flobsters now filling the sky. While the Bots continue to pretend to be robots, despite a flobster having a close encounter with Blades's face, the humans investigate. Doc Greene quickly calculates it will take two days for the effects of the floatium to wear off, and heads back to the lab to work on a solution. Unfortunately the flobsters quickly turn hostile to the humans present. Coby formulates a plan, and Dani and Blades scoop up a bunch of the flobsters in a cage, before dropping the whole cage back into the lobster tank.
Cody takes control of the ComTab, and the Rescue Bots and their partners are soon responding to flobster-related emergency calls all over Griffin Rock. Boulder and Graham help Mayor Luskeyafter a flobster severs a nearby power cable. Kade calls the station and attempts to be polite in talking to Heatwave. More flobsters trap Frankie in a phone booth, attracted to the starfish on the back of her jacket. She calls Cody for help, but luckily Heatwave is nearby and gets rid of the flobsters with his hose. As the others celebrate Frankie's rescue, Dani calls them back to the town square, where Doc Greene shows off the destabilizing compound he's created to remove the floatium from the water and flobsters. They can spray the compound directly on the flobsters, but there's only one batch and the flobsters are everywhere. Cody has the idea of using the giant lobster balloons to scare the flobsters and herd them back to the town square where Heatwave can spray them, ending the flobster menace.
The people of Griffin Rock enjoy their lobster lunches, while Blades finally gets the flobster joke, and Heatwave has kids climb all over him.
- Cody Burns
- Frankie Greene
- Charlie Burns
- Doc Greene
- Kade Burns
- Graham Burns
- Dani Burns
- Huxley Prescott
- Mayor Luskey
- Mr. Bunty
"Frankie, it's called the Lobster and Technology Festival, not the other way around. Tech's not that important." "Ugh, fine, then the next time you need your computer fixed, call a lobster."
- —Cody and Frankie
"Simon did not authorize that last movement."
- —Chase wins the game of "Simon Says".
"What do human children put on their fingers, anyway? Last time I let one climb on me, I was sticky for days."
- —Heatwave does not approve of kiddy antics.
"Ah, at least it's not livestock again."
- —Charlie Burns on seeing the flobsters.
"Well, there it is. You have just seen it, ladies and gentlemen. Our town is under attack! Hide your children, guard your property, boil some water!"
- —Huxley Prescott reports on the flobster invasion.
- The statue Doc Greene momentarily grabs on to during his out-of-control flight will be revealed in a later episode to be town founder Horace Burns.
- Cody previously gave the Rescue Bots a lesson on behaving like robots in "Family of Heroes".
- Chief Burns has "Hang in there" and "There is no I in team" posters in his office.
- Also visible during the parade is a hologram of President Chester A. Arthur, which will be revealed to be a permanent installation in the Hall of Inspiration in a later episode.
- Doc Greene's previous inventions include spray-on pants.
- Boulder is excited about the parade, claiming to have never been to one. However, in "All Spark Day", the Bots - similarly without Heatwave - start to plan celebrations for the titular event, which includes the Parade of Metals.
- Gadgets and powers:
- The lights on the back of Heatwave's hands can also be used to spray gas.
The phone box in The Birds admittedly did not have the antenna on top.
- Doc Greene's tenuous grip on the courthouse roof before being rescued bears a suspicious resemblance to the same in the movie Back to the Future.
- The fair-goer who knocks the floatium into the lobster tank is Rescue Bots co-creator/writer Brian Hohlfeld.
- The episode often evokes the 1963 Alfred Hitchcock film The Birds, notably it shares a scene with that film in which someone gets trapped in a telephone box.
Animation and technical errors
- Throughout the initial evening rescue of Doc Greene, the humans and Bots are lit differently; the humans have "daytime" lighting, while the Bots have "evening" lighting. This can be compared with the scene of Cody taking the Bots out through the tunnels on their first night in "Family of Heroes" or the activities on Mount Magma in "Under Pressure" (snippets can be seen in the title sequence).
- When Doc Greene first demonstrates the Floatium, the group of balloons next to him changes colors between shots.
- The audience at the parade is largely composed of non-animated character models in a neutral pose. Some of them are repeated, and Mr. Harrison can even be seen both with and without his heli-pack helmet.
- Two points that go against real-life biology: Between their shell ranging various colors while alive, real-life lobsters only turn completely red after the cooking process — the chances of finding a live red one is 1 in 10 million. They would've also died after being out of the water for over two days due to their gills having dried out.
- One should probably also not ask how floatium gives lobsters the ability to cut through tree branches and power cables with their claws.
- The common form of helium isn't radioactive and thus does not have a half life. Also, to make a helium balloon neutrally buoyant, all you need to do is add an appropriate amount of weight or use an appropriate helium/air mix rather than pure helium, there's no need to invent a new gas.
- At one point Cody chases a robot dog across the screen which has a flobster on its tail.
- This episode was later adapted in storybook form as Meet Heatwave the Fire-bot.