’optimus_prime.jpg’(WARNING: Plot points revealed in the following post.)

I’m not a movie critic. I’m a scientist. But the Transformers movie raised a lot of questions that trouble my scientific mind. (I will say that the special effects were mind-boggling even to Prof. Losanjealous–and that’s coming from someone who once installed two flux capacitors in a T.A.R.D.I.S. and made perfect flan.)

Starting with the chronology. Prof. Losanjealous seems to recall that the toys came first, then the cartoon, then the comic book, then the movie starring Orson Welles and Judd Nelson (who rumor has it feuded throughout production). Then a few years later there came some vector graphics nonsense where Optimus Prime was an ape and Megatron was like a wine rack. I think that brings us up to date.

So the following are just some notes based on a single viewing of the recent studio release:

opt.jpg• Soundwave: not to spoil anything but he isn’t in the movie. The reasons I guess are obvious–he’s an anachronism thrice-over–but Prof. Losanjealous sorely misses him. Am I crazy in thinking he was the coolest of the Decepticons? He was an intense indigo color, he had the all those tape-henchmen (two dudes, a bird, and a jaguar–wicked), he made the energon cubes, and he had that super-digitized voice you could pop/lock to. He could’ve run the show by himself but he didn’t. Why? Because he was too cool.

• Starscream: he is why Prof. Losanjealous thinks the toys came first, because I probably wouldn’t have bought him if I had known he was going to be such a prick. But I was into fighter planes and Starscream transformed into an F-15, the best of the best. In the movie he turns into an F-22 (“Raptor” is its Air Force denomination, which gives you an idea what kind of nerds/gamers/Transformers-collectors constitute the military). Also in his robot mode he looks stupid. He looks like a metal Liza Minelli. This might be subjective. (Also Prof. Losanjealous has a joke with a friend that Kobe Bryant is the Starscream of the Lakers. My friend and I have lots of jokes and between us have laid lots of women.)

• Bumblebee: never gave a shit. Now he’s a Camaro. Still don’t give a shit.

• Megatron: in the movie he is to have crash-landed on this planet long before all the others. Sometime in the ‘20’s. Since they all adapted their vehicle shapes from machines existent at that time. . .why does Megatron transform into something like a Bugatti X-wing fighter? A stony silence across the internet. Prof. Losanjealous thought so.

• The AllSpark: this is an invention of the screenwriters. All the Professor wants to say is that in its shrunken form it looks like a box-set of the Griffin & Sabine books.

Very lastly some of those computer effects are packed and cut so close together you just can’t see what the fuck is going on. Don’t spend all those millions if you can’t see which fucking robot is shooting which fucking robot. Okay. The Professor has spoken his peace. Office hours TBA.