DVD Shopping Bag: Challenge of the Gobots Mini-Series - Mania.com

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DVD Shopping Bag: Challenge of the Gobots Mini-Series

Warner Archive Rules

By Robert T. Trate     May 31, 2011

Leader-1 and Cop-Tur in Challenge of the Gobots
© Warner Archive/ Robert Trate


I was never a fan of The Gobots. I always favored The Transformers more. I knew of their existence but thought it was for younger kids. It could have been any of the following reasons: the animation, the transformations, or even the character’s names but it all seemed childish to me. Being nine at the time I didn’t really care for this rip off of The Transformers. I had a few of the toys, somehow. Perhaps they were a cheap Christmas present but they were still played with and enjoyed. Today, I’ll never turn down a chance to review eighties cartoons. When the Challenge of the Gobots became available through the Warner Archive I put my nine year old prejudice aside and picked it up.
This is not the complete series of The Gobots. The remaining 60 episodes are still in the Warner Archive. I was surprised that that the whole series did not come out but that is a lot of animation to take a gamble on. This DVD is part of the Hanna-Barbera Classic Collection, which is quickly becoming a great source of classic cartoons that one used to see on the Cartoon Network or Boomerang. The mini series is all that you get here. There are no special features or toy commercials. It is your re-introduction to Leader-1, Cy-Kill, Turbo, and Scooter. 
Cy-Kill (Bernard Erhard), the leader of the evil Renegades, comes to Earth to establish a base to act out his evil schemes. The reason should be a forgone conclusion as he wants to conquer his home world of Gobotron. Leader-1 (Lou Richards) and his Guardians peruse in the hopes to stop them. Cy-Kill has cut a deal with the evil NASA scientist Dr. Zebidiah Braxis(Rene Auberjonois) to conquer the world together. Double crosses will ensue but both characters are evil enough that even kids knew that these are the bad guys. Leader-1 needs help on Earth as he is out matched by the Renegades. Enter NASA astronaut Matt Hunter and his two junior cadets. The story’s plot is straight forward and each time the Guardians get the upper hand Cy-Kill takes it up notch. By the end of the show a TV series is kicked off but we the viewer are left waiting to see if Warner Brothers will unearth the rest of their adventures.
My nine year old self did not stay on the side lines too long. Instantly the poor excuses for transformations stuck out like a sore thumb. Why can I still see their Cop-Tur’s (Bob Holt) face after he becomes the helicopter? Why are their female Gobots? Better yet why does the evil one, Crasher (Marilyn Lightstone) have a crush on Leader-1? How can Leader-1, an F-15 Fighter Jet stand side by side with Scooter (Frank Welker) who is a scooter. Transformed their vehicle’s size aren’t even close to one another. Where does all that mass go? In comparison if you look at the Transformers, Optimus Prime (Peter Cullen) and Bumblebee (Dan Gilvezan), we have a clear distinction between the two.
The take over the world plot is a great kick start to any cartoon series. There needs to be that introduction to the world in which these characters live in as well. This is great after school cartoon fun that I grew up with and loved living out again. What left me flat was there was nothing after this. I thought the actors that voiced the characters brought each one to life. Welker’s Scooter was a bit annoying but all in all I was ready to dive into a few more episodes. Yes, despite my nine year old self.
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2. Legend (Ultimate Edition) [Blu-ray]
3. Big Jake [Blu-ray]
4. Barry Lyndon (Amazon Exclusive) [Blu-ray]
5. Once Upon a Time in the West [Blu-ray]
6. American Graffiti (Special Edition) [Blu-ray]
A Man Called Horse [Blu-ray] Starring Richard Harris and Manu Tupou
Barry Lyndon (Amazon Exclusive) [Blu-ray] Starring Ryan O'Neal, Marisa Berenson, Patrick Magee
Big Jake [Blu-ray] Starring John Wayne, Richard Boone, Patrick Wayne
Once Upon a Time in the West [Blu-ray] Starring Henry Fonda, Jason Robards, Charles Bronson
Rio Lobo [Blu-ray] Starring John Wayne, Jorge Rivero, Jack Elam and Christopher Mitchum
Guin Saga Collection 2
Synesthesia: Live Action Movie - Save Starring Yosuke Eguchi, Masanobu Ando and Aoi Mizayaki
Yu Yu Hakusho: Season One (Classic) [Blu-ray] Starring Christopher R. Sabat, John Burgmeier, Chuck Huber
Chronicles of Narnia: Lion Witch & Wardrobe
Toy Story 3 (Two-Disc Blu-ray / DVD Combo)
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Mrs Brown Youve Got a Lovely Daughter Starring Stanley Holloway
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Prizefighter and the Lady Starring Max Baer, Primo Carnera, Jack Dempsey and Walter Huston
Squall Starring Richard Tucker and Carroll Nye
So Goes My Love Starring Don Ameche, Rhys Williams, Bobby Driscoll
Third Finger Left Hand Starring Raymond Walburn, Lee Bowman and Felix Bressart
American Graffiti (Special Edition) [Blu-ray] Starring Richard Dreyfuss, Ron Howard, Paul Le Mat
American Graffiti (Special Edition)
The Cat O' Nine Tails [Blu-ray] Starring James Franciscus, Karl Malden, Catherine Spaak
Drive Angry Starring Nicolas Cage, Amber Heard and Charlotte Ross
Drive Angry [Blu-ray 3D]
Drive Angry [Blu-ray]
Kaboom Starring Haley Bennett, Thomas Dekker, James Duval
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Prey Starring Berenice Bejo and Isabelle Renauld
River of Darkness Starring Kurt Angle, S. William Hinzman and Kevin Nash
Biutiful [Blu-ray] Starring Javier Bardem and Maricel Álvarez
A Clockwork Orange (Anniversary Edition) [Blu-ray] Starring Malcolm McDowell, Patrick Magee, Warren Clarke
Beautiful Lies [Blu-ray]
Cross Starring Michael Clarke Duncan, Brian Austin Green
The Last Chase Starring Lee Majors, Chris Makepeace and Burgess Meredith
Legend (Ultimate Edition) [Blu-ray] Starring Tom Cruise, Tim Curry and David Bennent
One Step Beyond Starring Kenny Anderson
Savage County Starring Ana Ayora and David Caffey
Everybody Loves Raymond: Complete Series Starring Ray Romano, Brad Garrett and Peter Boyle
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Kung Fu: Complete Third Season Starring David Carradine, Radames Pera and Keye Luke
Have Gun Will Travel: Five Season Pack Starring Richard Boone and Kam Tong
Moonlight: Complete First Season Starring Alex O'Loughlin and Jason Dohring
Psych: The Complete Fifth Season Starring James Roday, Dulé Hill, Timothy Omundson and Corbin Bernsen
Rookie Blue: The Complete First Season Starring Missy Peregrym and Gregory Smith
Rookie Blue: The Complete First Season [Blu-ray]
SGU: Stargate Universe - The Complete Final Season Starring Robert Carlyle, Louis Ferreira, Brian J. Smith
True Blood: The Complete Third Season Starring Anna Paquin, Stephen Moyer, Sam Trammell and Ryan Kwanten
True Blood: The Complete Third Season [Blu-ray]
Stanley Kubrick: Limited Edition Collection [Blu-ray] Starring Malcolm McDowell, Patrick Magee, Jack Nicholson
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Robert Trate writes two weekly columns for Mania the DVD Shopping Bag and the Toy Maniac. Robert also participates in a pod cast that reviews movies, comics and celebrates all things geek. Check it out at You’ve Got Geek on You.com.


Showing items 1 - 6 of 6
jppintar326 5/31/2011 5:05:15 AM

The original miniseries to GoBots was pretty good.  I think the other episodes were okay but nothing spectacular.  I do remember that CyKill had a good put down of some of his minions who had "the combined intelligence of a ping pong ball."  Still, give me Transfomers anyday.  The Commander Center and Thruster toys were kind of cool though as well as Zod.

ChadDerdowski 5/31/2011 7:55:14 AM

Bobby, Bobby, Bobby... how can Megatron turn into a gun that is big enough to be used by Starscream and later turn into a gun that is small enough to be used by a human?  Why does that helicopter have a robot face?  Well, why does the robot turn into a helicopter in the first place?  And why are there female Go-Bots?  Well Bob, when two Go-Bots really love each other...

Your inner 9-year-old asks too many questions.  You need to get him high and just enjoy the ride, brother! 

Wyldstaar 5/31/2011 2:50:13 PM

They made sixty episodes of Go-Bots?  Why?  I watched the show, but I don't remember a single storyline (unlike Transformers, which I remember fairly well).  I thought the Go-Bots were great when the first appeared, and bought most of the Matchbox size ones of the first toyline.  They were cheap and cool.  About six months later, the Transformers came out and I was done with the Go-Bots.  Randal is right, they are like the K-Mart of Transformers.

Moz72 5/31/2011 9:39:25 PM

Still upset that back in the 80's toymaker Tonka the owners of the Gobots, sued the creaters of The Mighty Orbots siting infringement..and they won, which was the death knell for the Orbots, resulting in only a single 13 episode season. BASTARDS!!

ultrazilla2000 5/31/2011 10:41:25 PM

"I didn’t really care for this rip off of The Transformers"...except that it wasn't.  Gobots (Machine Robo in Japan) beat Transformers to the market.  I was a much bigger fan of the Transformers due to the larger toys, more interesting characters, and higher quality animation on TV (plus Marvel comics!), but I still have a soft place in my heart for the little Matchbox sized robos that could.  To this day, some of them remain top notch transformable action figures in comparison to some other toys.

karas1 6/2/2011 5:32:30 AM

There were female Gobots for the same reason there was a female Transformer, so the little girls in the audience would have a character to identify with.  And a toy to beg for presumably.



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