Archive for March, 2007

“..What is it with guys and The Transformers??..”

Posted in Uncategorized on March 23, 2007 by Otak Biru

It was after a cousin’s wedding ‘kenduri’ when my other cousin and her husband stopped by at our house. I’m not really close with her husband. In fact, he’s totally a stranger as that was the 1st time we actually met. They got married last 4 years back during my stressful+ nauseas exam week in ITM and going all the way back to East Coast just for her wedding was not a good idea then. So, that night is the only time I can mingle and get to know him better.

So, I found out that he is in early 30’s,from Ipoh and he is an oil rig engineer in Sarawak’s offshore . That’s explained why i hardly can see him around . Nothing much to share that time. We just talk about work and again, about work ..Then, the Ghost Rider ‘s trailer showed up in TV and he asked ,.." Hey, have you watch that..?

I replied “Nah.. not yet…maybe later or I can just get a pirate one. I’m not much of a movie-goer anyway..”

That lame reply actually reflect my frustration towards Ghost Rider , “The Movie”. Although I’m one of the readers but I started with the ‘other’ G.R which is Daniel Ketch(Danny) and not the 70’s edition of Johnny Blaze. Ketch is the next ghostie after Blaze , which started back in 1994 when he found the bike, ‘The Medallion’ in a NY dump yard. From a 70’s ‘Harley Davidson’ model (like what we see in the movie), The Caretaker has modified it into an awesome kick-ass superbike model in the 90’s. Just like Blaze, Ketch also gave his soul to the devil to save her sister but the devil dooped him. His sister died anyway .In 1996, Marvel make a short reunion of the 2 ghosties in ‘Midnight Sons’ edition and Blaze claimed Ketch as his long lost little brother. Totally weird because apart from their different family names, Ketch was originally born in Long Island ,NY while Blaze was born in Nevada, and Ketch never mentioned about the dead sister to Blaze. They doesn’t seem to be so related.

So, why am I so frustrated? It is because 1) The bad guys in Ketch ‘s version are nastier and ultimate freak psycho like Blackout, The Torso and the vampire brothers of The Skins. i was expecting them to show up in the movie , 2) I also expect the ghostie’s friend like The Werewolf to show up in the movie and 3) I just really don’t know Johnny Blaze.

Anyway, I continued that I am waiting for my grand revisit to the cinema on this coming July, only to celebrate the ultimate movie of the year 2007: THE TRANSFORMERS !!!

Suddenly he shouted "..Whoaa Transformers?!!…u mean THE Transformers?? The cartoon that got robots changing to cars and sorts like that? You serious aa?..”

And I replied “ YAA!!,,,what else if it is not the TF G1 (The Transformers: Generation 1), The Autobots and The Decepticons. They ‘re coming alive this July and it is not on 2D or 3D cartoon movie la, bro..”

He then became so restless. Jumpy and excited. Still cannot believe what he just heard. He also made me excited when he started sharing his TF G1 experience . He told that he was in Standard 4 or 5 when he first saw TF on TV3 and it was like love at first sight for him. Who wouldn’t fall in love with TF, anyway? off course boys love robots, especially those who can change themselves into cars, trucks and even fighter jets. A perfect combination. It was the awesome idea made by Hasbro which beat the hell out of Mattel. The idea that change the life of the boys around the globe and also my life.

I still remember the 1st time I encountered TF. It was in 1987 .i was a 8 years old in Standard 2 and in the same year, Kelantan and other east coast states just recently received the TV3 transmission. It was on mid-term school holiday break when we finally can watch Wan Zaleha Radzi and Mahadir Lokman in the Sunday morning talk show called ‘Sekapur Sirih’. Then , after the talk show ends, came the moment that we all waiting for: The Sunday Morning Cartoon show!!. It was like a marathon of cartoons. I cannot recall all of them but I still can remember some, which was my sister’s favourites like ‘Jem & The Holograms’ or ‘ The Smurfs’.

The Transformers was the last to show up. (Save the best for the last?..)By this time , my sister won’t bother to sit in-front of TV anymore. Leaving me and my little brother ourselves and it’s our turn to rule the couch. It was like heaven when the montage started with the ‘evergreen’ song, ‘…Transformers…Robots in disguise..’ . We were glued to our seats for an hour (yeah,including the TV commercials) just to see The Autobots , led by the Mighty O’ Prime to fight The Decepticons’ evil plans to take over our planet. Both ‘teams’ will use everything they got. From laser guns to missiles and even with their bare hands, punching and grappling their nemesis.Who will ever forget these tagline from O’ Prime: “Autobots ..transform!!!” and also from Megatron :” Decepticons ..transform!!!” and off course, followed by the famous transformation sound effect..”kuh,,kuh kui..kui kuh”..

Then, the school break is over and it means no more TF on Sunday morning because in Kelantan, Sunday means school day. It’s a disaster because I’ll miss all the episodes. A solution plan is needed so we formed a group of TF’s enthusiast in class which everyone of us will take turn to skip school every Sunday. The idea was, whoever get the turn to skip school on Sunday, have to watch TF and then became the ‘Storyteller’ and tell the whole group about the episode next day. A crazy idea from a group of 8 years old boys but it really work. The funny part was, some of the ‘Storyteller’ had difficulty with English Language that time and its hard to understand the episodes. So, it motivates us to improve our English and we need to focus more on that subject in class or else , we cannot be a good ‘Storyteller’. See? who said The Transformers gave bad influence to us?

By the way, the cartoons in the 80’s and early 90’s were more educative to the kids and always giving example of good versus evil .The lesson we got from the cartoons was , doesn’t matter how long it’ll take and how hard it will be, the good guys will always wins over the bad guys. Same goes to M.A.S.K, ,Silverhawks, G.I Joe , Spiral Zone or Thundercats or perhaps Jap’s anime like the Robotech series ( from Macross One to Mospeada generation). It’s all about fighting the evil. Sadly, It’s hard to find this simple element in today’s cartoons . I give example such as Pokemon which we can use our pets, or whatever that ‘cute’ creatures are, as a duel- fighting machines which I found ridiculous and pathetic. It is like watching a Laga Ayam (Cock Fighting) cartoon. No wonder we keep hearing about some incident involving school kids and how aggressive they are now.

There’s something about TF that fascinated us until now. Maybe the actions , the explosion, the story lines or perhaps their cool names and attitudes of every Transformers. Other than the Optimus Prime, my favourite G1 Autobots are the mentally- retarded Grimlock ( Sub terrain Tank ) , the funny & sweet little brother Bumblebee a.k.a Goldbug (1976 Volkswagen Beetle) and the cool and romantic Bluestreak a.k.a Silverstreak (1986 Nissan 280ZX Fairlady ) . I totally forgot all the Autobots but I still can remember the leader of the Fighter Jets Autobots ,Skydive (F-16) who died because he tried to save the Metroplex from a nuclear missile, To have Optimus Prime’s toy model back then is every boys’ dream. It’ll cost you almost RM100. So, the only TF model I afford to get from my dad was Bumblebee which is less than RM70.

Both Autobots and Decepticons got different attitude. The Commander, Optimus Prime shows how he really concerns about the brotherhood and friendships among The Autobots (which is important for boys). While Megatron shows his leadership in Decepticons through dictatorship and tyranny. But he is not as evil as his own assistant, the backstabbing-good for nothing Starscream (F-15 Eagle), The General of the Fighter Jets who always got hidden agenda for his own good and his team is not a priority to him. Even Megatron will not leave any of his men behind during the clash with Autobots.

We cannot denied the facts that The Decepticons are much more stronger and powerful than The Autobots. This is because in their home planet of Cybertron, the original form of The Autobots were just ‘Workers’ or ‘Domestic Appliances’ which means The Autobots once were just Robotic Washing Machines or even a vacuum cleaner. While Decepticons are totally ‘Soldier’ or ‘Military Devices and Weapon’ . Both were built by the Quintesson (an alien race) who used Cybertron as a factory to create assembly lines of soldiers and workers for their customers throughout the universe.That was before the rebellion started ,when the robots’ energy drink, Energon, became scarce in Cybertron.

I was about to tell the sad part on how Starscream succesfully killed Optimus Prime (Which Megatron got nothing to do with it) when my sister came to us and said ..

" I can’t believe it,..You guys also talking about this Transformers things ahh? I thought only my officemates should go to kindergarten again.Maybe they can bring you guys in too. Tell me something..What is it with guys and The Transformer anyway..?”

Well, it’s hard to explain why grown-up guys are still crazy about TF I still love to talk about it with my buddies. Actually , I’m also totally forgot why I love TF so much but It is still a phenomenal to me and I got this strange mixed feelings when I heard The Bots are coming alive on big screen. Sad and happy feelings that almost shed me to tears I guess if I can go back in time , and ask my 8 years old self, he probably can give me the exact answer.

The TF phenomena is here again. So, for the ladies ,,you don’t have to understand or love or know about TF but please do understand that TF is really a sacred and holy thing to your boyfriend or perhaps your husband .Please forgive him if he become obnoxious like a kid again this coming July. Be prepare to go watch the movie several times with him. Also be prepare to hear him talking about The Transformers over and over again.You might want to share the excitement with him by getting some information about The Transformers, especially their names, so you wont lost during the conversation. Trust me, he will appreciate that and will love you more.

Whatever it is, at least I had a warm conversation with my cousin’s husband. I felt like I knew him for years when we started talking about TF . It proves that, TF ties the bond and friendship among guys and I just did. I got a new buddy. He promised that he will try his best not to be offshore during the premier screening and I really hope he can make it because this July, we are going to celebrate our comeback as little boys again.