RID Character Bible

“RID Character Bible”
Article: Hydra
Formatting: Might Gaine

Transformers: Robots in Disguise Series Bible

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What has gone before…
Transformers: Robots in Disguise is the fourth installment in the Transformers mythos. Whereas the two previous series – Beast Wars and Beast Machines – primarily dealt with robots who could “transform” into animals, Transformers: Robots in Disguise borrows from all three. The main characters in our show consist of both animal-based Transformers and vehicle-based Transformers, a-la Generation 1.

So what’s our show about?
A millennium celebration, headed by DR. ONISHI and attended by scholars and scientists from all over the world, is suddenly attacked by evil alien robots called PREDACONS. MEGATRON, the Predacon leader, has come to kidnap Earth’s greatest minds in an effort to take over the planet. KOJI ONISHI, watching this horrible event unfold before his eyes on television, tries to contact his dad via his VIDEO CELLPHONE but instead contacts a mysterious robot known as OPTIMUS PRIME.

OPTIMUS PRIME is the brave leader of the heroic Autobots, who have sworn to protect all life from the tyranny of the Predacons. He and his fellow Autobots have been fighting the Predacons for thousands of years and now their eternal struggle has come to Earth. Both the Autobots and Predacons are TRANSFORMERS, robots who are able to disguise themselves by transforming from robot mode into another form, be it an animal or a vehicle (more on this later).

Optimus Prime – Leader of the Autobots. He’s a bit of a square, but don’t let that fool you. Can be a bit hot-blooded, but never loses himself in a fight. No other Transformer is more honorable or has a deeper love for all life than Optimus. He has a strong sense of duty and his respect and appreciation of his allies make him the consummate leader. He can combine with the trailer section of his fire engine to go into Battle Mode.

X-Brawn – Eldest of the three Autobot brothers. An “off-roader” type. He has an amazing tolerance for extreme conditions. He’s pretty uncommunicative, but he is extremely reliable. He’s able to accurately judge situations, and he just can’t let it be when he sees someone doing wrong, even if it’s driving off-road without permission. But he’s also able to have fun. He has a hidden hot-blooded side and an EXTREMELY powerful left arm. He’s definitely rural, but not so much a redneck or hick—cowboy at heart. Polite, not brash—especially to the ladies—but with a definite rough-and-tumble fun-loving streak.

Prowl – Middle brother. He’s VERY conscious about rules and regulations, and this sometimes undermines the team effort. Prowl is extremely knowledgeable in geography, and his pursuit capabilities are outstanding; he prides himself on his jet boosters. Remember, he’s a cop, very by-the-book.

Sideburn – The youngest brother. Side Burn is a freewheeling roughneck, but he’s too cheerful to dislike. He’s a “player” (as much as a robot can be a player), which leads him to try and “pick up” hot cars, even if they’re not robots. Hands down the fastest of the three brothers. Greatly values the love and friendship of those around him.

Railspike – Leader of the Autobot Bullet Train team. Very intelligent and knowledgeable. And OLD. Veteran cop, a little rough around the edges. Extremely pragmatic in a real-world way. Not exactly cuddly, but he gets the job done.

Rapid Run – The biggest and toughest of the bullet trains. Younger cop on the beat type, very cocky and self-assured. The original inspiration for the expression “Fools rush in where angels fear to tread.” In a cop movie, Rail Spike would be telling Rapid Run “You try another stupid stunt like that an’ you’ll get us both killed!”

Midnight Express – This is the guy who gave up his thrilling career in chartered accountancy to enter the police academy. A very bookish, Niles Crane kind of character. He’s not a coward, and far from stupid, but all he knows is what he’s read in books—he’s got no real-world experience. When it comes to putting his training into practice, he’s bound to commit the occasional faux pas.

Rail Racer – A super robot made up of the three Autobot bullet trains. It is equipped with both a flamethrower and a protective suit of armor.

Hot Shot – Leader of the Spychangers, Hot Shot has worked together with Optimus Prime for a long time. He comes across as exceptionally rough and tough regarding duties, but like all Autobots he is very concerned for those around him. Able to control flames at will.

Ironhide – The strongest of the Spychangers, Ironhide is normally peaceful and intellectual. But, once you push him to his limit, he’s unstoppable. He is also a transport exert and comes equipped with a shockwave rifle.

R.E.V. – R.E.V. (Race Exertion Vehicle) is the tactical officer of the Spychangers. He is also the advisor to Hot Shot. With his excellent jumping power, he can spring about from building to building. He is also equipped with a shotgun.

W.A.R.S. – A daring Spychanger warrior, WARS (Wicked Attack Recon Sportscar) is covered in thick armor and specializes in body-slam type attacks. One of the rare pro-war Autobots, his violent actions frighten and appall both his allies and his enemies. He has a machine gun which he fires non-stop.

Mirage – The fastest Spychanger, Mirage darts through towns like an arrow. He is also the best marksman of the Autobots. In the past, he has performed many distinguished services, from bodyguard to espionage. He is equipped with a sniper rifle.

Crosswise – Crosswise is the quietest of the Spychangers, but there’s no one more dedicated. No one knows much about him, as he is a bit enigmatic.

Megatron – Leader of the Predacons. A cruel and destructive despot, he is a battle-hardened Transformer with goals of universal domination. Megatron is the only known Transformer to have mastered the skill of the mighty six-mode transformation: robot, right hand, bat, two-headed dragon, jet plane or car. Much more pompous, vain, conceited, and cruel—with a flair for the dramatic. Has led the devestation of countless worlds before coming to Earth, but the Predacon rule is, for him, chiefly a means of self-glorification.

Gas Skunk – One of the Predacon field squadron, Gas Skunk is an expert in demolitions operations. He fires time bombs from his right shoulder and can blow from his mouth a gas that causes uncontrollable laughter. The tip of his tail is a claw made from special alloys. But, for all his strength, he’s not the bravest robot in the world… he’s very quick to run away at any sign of trouble.

Dark Scream – Dark Scream is the second member of the Predacon field squadron. An expert swordsman, he can slice anything in two with one stroke of the sword hidden in his tail. He is, if anything, nocturnal by nature, and has no trouble at all with night missions. He loves Earthly samurai period dramas. He doesn’t trust anyone, not even his allies, and he’s a chronic complainer.

Slapper – The third member of the Predacon field squadron. Also a swindler. In beast mode, he uses his tongue like a whip, deftly wrapping it around enemies’ weapons to snatch them away. He also has a hidden extendable grabber claw with which he can open a hole even in the bottom of a battleship.

Sky-Byte – Megatron’s loyal aide. Sorta. He believes that he’s smarter, stronger, and more evil than his fellow Predacons… even Megatron, though he’d never admit it. A self-styled poet and hopeless romantic, he can be found reading great literary works by candlelight.

Hydra’s comments

[This series bible was originally published on my TF Pulp website after the Cybercon Expo Act 3 event of 2004, where I won it in a contest. Allsparker Monzo recently requested that it be added to the Allspark TF Pulp content, so I went ahead and dug it out. My comments below are left as they were when I first posted the article.]

When reading this, please first remember that it is a bible for Robots in Disguise, the American dub created after Car Robots had run its course. So, you shouldn’t assume that all information in it is consistent with that of Car Robots. On the contrary, there are various changes.

First, I acquired this bible at Cybercon Expo 3 in New Jersey. There was a little contest during the Q&A panel for Neil Kaplan (Optimus Prime) and Wankus (Prowl). The gist of it was that the people who asked the best questions would receive one of two scripts, or the top prize, the series bible, of which only about twenty were said by Neil to exist. So, I had to immediately come up with a single question that would assuredly win me the bible, for the good of my archive and this website. And I had the perfect question. It was sublime. It was:

“My friends and I all want to know: How long is Optimus Prime’s… ladder?”

Amongst all the questions on honor, family, and 9/11, that won out. I think that part of it was Neil’s response: “Fully erect? Because, you know, you erect a ladder!” Then, someone else chimed in, “Does it shoot foam?”

On the topic of the script, some of the information is illuminating (Like Car Robots, it does take place at the turn of the millennium), although I was a bit disappointed that the Spychanger info was virtually the same as what was later used for their tech specs. Gigatron is the first to master the six-mode transformation… except for all the other ones, like Sixshot, I guess. Some of the more elaborate notes are interesting, like just what kind of bumpkin X-Brawn is, and how much of a player Side Burn is. Enjoy!

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