Rewatch: #07: XL

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Rewatch: #07: XL

Post by Steel on Sun Feb 19, 2012 12:00 pm

Back again with “XL”. From now on I will be following this format to make things easier on you guys, as well as me, for archiving purposes.
    1. TIMELINE
    2. TECHNOLOGY
    3. LORE/FACTS
    4. CHARACTERS
    5. CONTINUITY ISSUES
    6. QUESTIONS
On to the episode review!

TIMELINE

  • Obviously set fairly early in the show, but probably after “NOS-4-A2”. Given all the father/son references in “NOS-4-2”, I believe it is suitable for “XL” to be set afterwards, or else there would have been continuity issues (not that this show really cares about that, but moving on). Therefore, I’m glad we’re watching this one later.
  • Another continuity issue in this episode is Mira being able to read Crumford’s mind. She learns that in “The Planet Destroyer”, which is why we switched those two episodes around for our rewatch session.
  • Apparently, at some point in Buzz’s life, he set up a trap to lure the “Droops of Kulthart” to Sentilla IV. (There’s also a Sentilla VI in a latter episode if I’m not mistaken, so maybe the system itself is called Sentilla and each planet has a number~?)
  • Also, Mira and the other Rookies apparently have already been introduced to Crumford at some point in the past. However, Crumford is more familiar with Buzz and doesn’t seem to fear the other Rangers as much as he fears him.
  • This is also an instance we see Mira and Booster teaming up. They did pretty good with Crumford, I think!

TECHNOLOGY

  • We got acid arms to extract metals and melt down rocks. Cool, no wonder XL wanted one of those babies.
  • The next place he hits has classic warehouse equipment, I’d say. A very interesting, clunky, limited-thinking capacity robot—CARRYING RADIATION-STAMPED OBJECTS. Bad XL, stealing his leg like that.
  • And now we’ve got a high-level security lab with... guard-bots?! Wait, so all this is still happening on Star Command? We’ll I’ll be a monkey’s uncle. Nebula even says it as he lists off most of what XL stole, which is apparently “the latest in research robotics”, as well as stuff from their “war-bots”. If this is all happening on Star Command, how the hell is he not noticed sooner... some lousy security, if you ask me.
  • ”Brent Starkisser, Galac-a-vision!” I wonder if that’s actually the name of the channel this news report is being aired on, or if that’s what the news is referred to. Probably the former, though.
  • XL tapped into Star Command’s files from his base, which reveal where his asteroid home is.
  • Auxiliary thrusters to get out of the asteroid rain? Why not!
  • XL has a hyper-frequency defence shield to protect his home. All that was needed was a way to jam the frequency, which XR accomplished fairly easily by flicking a switch inside of 42. Nifty.
  • Also, it’s apparently Booster’s job to take out guns and stuff when they hit the ship, seeing as Buzz drives it. So he used the gun that comes out beneath 42 to shoot them down. Neato.
  • Nice how XR can easily hack by hooking up to jacks and turn machines against XL.

LORE/FACTS

  • The LGMs are not the only scientists on Star Command. The episode opens with a female scientist attempting to extract something from what looks like an asteroid chunk.
  • Apparently, Star Command has warehouses and undergoes a fair amount of high-level security experiments. Heck, they’ve got their own Sector 51 going on!
  • XR continues to call Nebula “Pop”, but now extends it to “dad” and even “papou”—which actually means “grandpa” in Greek. xD
  • There are plenty of labs and robotic factories in the BLoSC universe (I think).
  • Buzz likes calling all criminals “punks”, I think...
  • Boster doesn’t even flinch when a table is thrown at him. I bet it didn’t hurt at all.
  • XR mentions something about warranty cards that people need—to, I assume, hand in somewhere since he never finished his sentence—in order for robots to be catalogued by their model numbers in a database. This is interesting. Reminds me, I guess, of handing out Ids and passports and stuff to regular people.
  • And the moment XL’s name is mentioned, the LGMs are all like, “Uh oh...”
  • Oh, Buzz called Mira by her last name over the wrist communicator there. Interesting. But maybe that’s just because he noticed the LGMs being shifty. I will keep an eye out for this happening again.
  • There was nothing much to the XL project. According to Nebula, it was a “dismal failure “and he ordered XL to be deactivated. Judging by the video files on the record, XL was pretty aggressive. He even had the weird eye thing going on then too, although when it reverts to his newer self, the larger eye is flipped to the other side.
  • And there we have at least part of the reason why Nebula isn’t fond of robots. After the XL “debacle”, he was convinced that a “robot rangers is a bad idea”. And the LGMs furtively tell Buzz that they just slipped the XR paperwork in with the vacation requests. I think this was mentioned in “The Adventure Beings” too, so yay for continuity!
  • I love that freaking desk telling them now Nebula was kidnapped and adding he’s days behind in his paperwork. Nebula really hates paperwork, just like Buzz. Desk is also smart and has an attitude!
  • Star Command Father/Son picnic. DO WANT. Also, it has a pie-eating contest.

CHARACTERS

XL

This is where we first see—or, for the matter, even hear of—there being a robot before XR. It was so hush-hush that not even Buzz knew about it! But it was one of the reasons Nebula grew to dislike robots and the idea of robots rangers, due to XL and a fault, I would guess, in his programming, for he was destructive and sought to hurt others. Even then, he was probably not all right in the head. The mismatched eyes the animators tacked on should be proof enough if all the running around and shooting things wasn’t enough. But you’d think they’d try to fix that programming, you know? Ah, well.

He obviously originally lived on Star Command, but now has an asteroid he’s made into his home with some sort of... looks like an abandoned robot factory or something. Also, ever since then, he’s made a name for himself on Tradeworld and is a robot who keeps looking for bigger and better parts. Most likely acquiring an inferiority complex after being shut down, XL wants revenge on Nebula. But in order to do that, he had to rebuild himself, make himself better, faster, stronger. So he stole tech stuff from all sorts of sources. Although this is kind of inconsistent, given how he maintains the same design they incorporate for him in this episode for the rest of the other episodes he appears in.

His most important weapons are his arms. His right arm, the one with the most capabilities due to “morphing” technology, possesses the following ablities/weapons:
  • Fires green energy blasts that can destroy guard-bots.
  • Possesses three, thick fingers that can form a fist.
  • Has a gun-like weapon that extends beyond his hand. Fires green blasts that tear through metal.
  • Has a chain-saw. Also has a buzz saw. (Two different weapons)
  • Has a... rocket? Huh, didn’t notice that other times.
  • Has a cannon that fires of a thin red beam (probably for aim, but it doesn’t show up all the time) above the actual chamber that opens and fires off a huge green-white energy blast. Despite how strong it appears to be, it only singes the doors.
  • Has a machine-gun like appendage that fires off several yellow pulses in quick succession, boring holes through metal.
  • Has a... I’m not sure what to call it. here is the image and it’s series of rings. I think it’s to conduct electricity, but I don’t know what it’s called... maybe a sci-fi version of a gramme machine?
  • He also has three spikes, and those definitely have an electrical charge.
  • He also has a huge-ass drill.
  • He also has a spike-studded fist that resembles one of those painful maces.
  • And a... blender. Okay. xD
  • I WANT TO BE... A SLEDGEHAMMER! (Sorry, couldn’t resist.)
  • WHOA. All of a sudden, XL has three cables that come out of the small, circular fingers he has on his hand that connect to his computer to activate the guns he has as another defence system for his home. Maybe that’s because he’s manually controlling them? I can’t believe I missed that the first time around too.

His left arm:
  • The first arm that was stolen, this arm fires acid, melting through pretty much any metal.

Another ability he possesses is the knowledge to programme defences for his home, despite his apparent inability to, ah, use cognitive thinking skills. He’s also very strong, being able to lift objects more than twice his weight, and also possesses a rocket that emerges from his back in order to fly.

He also has one of the weirdest laughs I’ve ever heard. As well as is touchy when he’s made out to be “flawed”, or “scrap”. Hey, can’t blame the big guy on that. I would be touchy too if people kept calling me names. Sad I mean, Nebula’s cool, but weoweo, he’s worse to XL than he ever was to XR.

Now, for XL’s home:
  • He doesn’t live on the asteroid, he pretty much lives in t and has converted it to be his home. It has a set of huge rockets on one end to fly around like a spaceship and a trapdoor to send asteroid chunks flying to anyone pursuing him.
  • Has a hyper-frequency defence shield to protect it the Rangers could not pass through easily until they jammed it.
  • Guns that come out to... well, fire. xD
  • He has an elaborate laser trap for Nebula that’s supposed to cut him to ribbons, but he’s of course thwarted.
  • He also has a bunch of old, discarded robotic parts that still *gasp* work! Just envision that with human limbs, I dare you.
  • Huh, a robot that throws electric nets. Cool! And a gravitational field to stop Mira from moving. Nice. Both made by XL, might I add.

Also, gotta mention here that Nebula just keeps on goading XL. And he says something about XL not thinking things through and always being one step behind, being one of the reasons he was shut down. That’s kind of harsh...


XR

  • XR tries really hard to impress Nebula in this episode. It’s almost sad how he wouldn’t have minded a hug or punch, because either would have been a sign of affection. He even agrees to be bat to make him proud!
  • I love how he just slides his arms and feet into his torso to make himself look smaller.
  • He’s also still the same attention-seeking show-off we’ve come to know and love.
  • Whoa, now this is interesting. When they’re welding that hole XL escaped from shut, XR suddenly doesn’t have his legs and has a rocket in place to be near the ceiling, as well as one of those welders protruding from his chest. It just looked kind of... interesting and out of the blue, for some reason. Even his eyes look different, like he’s wearing goggles, when he’s sealing the hole.
  • ”You mean I have a... big brother?” His voice here is just so woojoowoojoo.
  • “Doesn’t he realise what he’s doing to the X family name!” LOL.
  • Stop talking and get cracking to jamming that shield—oh there you go, you drama llama.
  • Stop getting Nebula to call you son and get him out of there before—nevermind.
  • Gotta admire how he trips XL with his arms even though he’s not exactly connected to his body anymore.

MIRA

  • I hate to say it, Mira, but you know just what to say to convince people to do what you want them to do, hurr. Ys, this includes both with XR, when she’s fakely sweet, and Crumford, when she’s threatening to scramble his brains like an omelette.
  • Although she still has that nervous kind of way of talking when she rambles and realises it. Kinda cute. xD

CONTINUITY ISSUES

  • If XL is looking for new body parts now, and that woman who works on Star Command got to see him looking pretty much how he originally did... how is it that she didn’t mistake him for XR? You’d think with all the body parts he was throwing away that they’d connect the dots sooner. Not to mention you clearly se XR-like hands grab the new acid arm.
  • How the frack does Star Command have all that stuff? And how did XL break in the first few times without being caught? I mean, really, Star Command, I am disappoint...
  • According to Nebula, what’s happening a “high-tech crime wave” that poses a threat to “machines, humans, and every other lifeform in the galaxy”, which I find pretty rude given Mira and Booster are right there too. He tried to be politically correct, I guess, but still came off as a bit too pro-human like Cerberus in Mass Effect when he should know better.
  • Okay, how the hell can XL break into Star Command so easily? I mean, really. If he can do that (and let’s face it, he’s not all that bright) then pretty much anyone can!
  • Booster, Mira, you aren’t doing much to stop XL...
  • Only Booster was enough to plug a hole? They couldn’t have used something... else?
  • Wait, since when do they know Crumford? Isn’t this the first episode he appears in?
  • Since when do LGMs have rockets and “jet away”...?
  • Nebula kind of states the obvious when he says XL is using the parts to rebuild himself, but I find it interesting that he says the thief is “one of their own”. Did they still have XL on Star Command, then? That would explain how he could so readily get all those bits and pieces to rebuild himself the first time, then.
  • I wonder how XL got a hold of that security footage. It’s explained later, so derp.
  • OH, IT’S THE SECURITY CODES. So that’s how he did it. But you’d think Star Command would change them every so often to avoid infiltration!
  • And given how badass Nebula was in “NOS-4-A2” I’m almost disappointed that XL managed to knock him out simply by slamming the desk into him while he was pinned against the wall multiple times. Granted, that’s an owwie, but still...
  • Technically speaking, 42 would have been torn to shreds t the first instance of space rock smacking her surface. But then again we’ve established that we are dealing with cartoon physics at times and must, regrettably, let such discrepancies slide. Although Buzz does manoeuvres out of them, which requires precision.

And as a nice conclusion to this episode, Nebula is proud of XR, admits to him that he has heart, and XL is taken into custody. Although I gotta wonder, how was h so easily taken down by mere robot parts. And also, XL didn’t get to have much of a reaction to XR when he first sees him. He thought he was better than him, sure, but the exchange was fairly subtle and not as laden with emotion like XR was acting, with so much drama. And he seemed to not want the X family or whatever to be torn apart but had no qualms subduing him to save Nebula.

Also, how the frack did Zurg re-activate XL when he was stored away on Star Command...? Anyway, question time!

QUESTIONS
    1. What did you think of XL?
    2. What about the relationships between XL, XR and Nebula? Feel free to examine them from all angles.
    3. What was your favourite part in this episode?
    4. What was your least favourite part?
    5. Any last thoughts?

Until next time! I’ll try to get back on schedule, but these take so long to do! *makes a mental note to reserve only three hours to a review and not to surpass it*

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Re: Rewatch: #07: XL

Post by Fox Storm on Sun Feb 19, 2012 1:21 pm

Spoiler:
Steel wrote:
QUESTIONS
    1. What did you think of XL?
    2. What about the relationships between XL, XR and Nebula? Feel free to examine them from all angles.
    3. What was your favourite part in this episode?
    4. What was your least favourite part?
    5. Any last thoughts?

Until next time! I’ll try to get back on schedule, but these take so long to do! *makes a mental note to reserve only three hours to a review and not to surpass it*

1. I think XL is....well, HOLY NOVA. He's dangerous when he can be, but he seems a bit... unpredictable?...I dunno what other word to describe him, but he seems to be like Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde; you know what's he capable of, but you don't know what he'll pull on you. He seems competent in his own way (not that he's the most brilliant mind in the universe), but he also seems a bit...absent-minded and violent. He's a good villain, though! I like how he's voiced by Bobcat Goldthwait! Nice ref to the Disney version of Hercules-he played one of Hades' little helpers, Pain. Very Happy

2. From XL's POV, I like how he replayed the scene of Nebula giving the okay to shut him down. Just him replaying that scene...3 times, is enough to speak VOLUMES about the pain he feels about being shut down. It shows that there's a shade of grey to XL...even if we don't agree with it. And even though he may not be too bright, he is capable of feeling emotional pain. This moment is small, and while not a quiet moment per say, it is a reflective moment in that it gives us a chance to look at things from XL's POV and in a way, through his eyes about what he felt at that moment, and I like that. It's kind of the equivalent to a Batman: The Animated Series episode; a quiet moment summed up in an action of some sort.

As much as I like Nebula, there are times when I feel he's a bit harsh. I mean, I am sure he made the right choice in shutting down XL, considering XL was violent and all, but the way he acted towards XR in this...no wonder he distrusted robot Rangers before XR proved himself. But maybe it was because the LGMs made an innocent mistake in giving XL a personality, whereas XR didn't have a personality, and they programmed him to watch and learn before gaining one himself...with the LGMs' screwup, of course. xD

Speaking of XR, I liked how he shined in various places throughout the episode. I've kinda grown to like/dislike XR at times (depends on my mood), but in this episode, he really did a number in proving himself to be awesome, like sealing up the hole in Star Command was a crowning moment of awesome for him! ^^

3.. I love the ref to the X-Files tv show when Nebula opens up the "XL Files". I don't watch the X-Files often, but I love, LOVE the opening to that show, and the ref is just awesome. I also love the ending because it's a nice way of Nebula and XR having a small yet lovely bond with each other. It proves that Nebula does care about ALL his Rangers...even if he doesn't always show it at times. xD

4.. Well...I kind of sort of already ranted about this, but I'll say it again. I can't help but be disappointed with how XL easily broke into Star Command with hacking into the codes. I mean, I know that's part of XL's character, but you'd think Star Command would be more competent in this things. It's just...I don't wanna say it's hypocritical (since it was sort of Star Command's fault on their end), but it does make one wanna question how seriously Star Command takes it own security.

5. Overall, I thought this episode was a pretty enjoyable one, and while there are certain issues with it, it's a pretty enjoyable episode that gives off the spotlight to robots everywhere!...with XR and XL, anyway. xD


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Re: Rewatch: #07: XL

Post by Mephew-J on Sat Oct 06, 2012 5:02 am

Well, more or less to question 3: I thought it was kinda sad when XL got discharged and wanted to know what makes XR better than him... A heart...
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Re: Rewatch: #07: XL

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