Would Warp return to Star Command?

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Would Warp return to Star Command?

Post by Ranger-Nova on Tue Jan 29, 2013 1:52 pm

I know most Warp fans will probably disagree with me on this, and I want to make it clear that I like Warp too and don’t mean to denigrate his character, but... I don’t think he would ever return to Star Command. Even under the best possible circumstances, I think the most that could be hoped for is for him to leave Zurg and stop engaging in criminal activities; and maybe, if he’d done something really heroic, he might be pardoned. But rejoining Star Command? No.

Feel free to disagree and present counterarguments, but hear me out first.

Warp worked beside Buzz for twenty years. They went to the Academy together, and became the finest Rangers Star Command had ever seen. They were the perfect team, and they seem to have genuinely liked each other and gotten along well, even if they had very different personalities, and often got on each other’s nerves. So, given that background, surely Warp would easily turn back to Star Command and give up his Agent Z job with Zurg?

Um, no.

We have to remember that Warp was working for Zurg all that time. As far as we can tell, he either entered the Academy just so that he could become a mole, or he entered Zurg’s service very early in his Academy days. How he became involved with Zurg is hard to say, but it was almost certainly for monetary reasons, since Warp is a very self-interested guy who is always out for profit.

He must have been a good actor to fool everyone at the Academy and at Star Command, including his own partner (and bear in mind that Buzz, for all his flaws, is very intelligent and should have realised that Warp was a traitor), and it’s possible he genuinely enjoyed his job as a Ranger. He’s not committed to evil like Zurg - the only thing he’s really committed to is himself - so he wouldn’t have minded doing good. It might even have eased any guilt that he had - after all, he may have sold out to the other side, but he was still saving lives every day and being a hero. And best of all, he made a boatload of money off the deal. It was the perfect job, especially for an egotistical hotshot like him. Not only did he make all that money, but he also got to go on dangerous adventures for both sides, and because he was so skilled (he was second in his class, after all) he could pull these missions off, and no one ever suspected he was a double agent. That must have boosted his ego a lot.

But let’s be real here. This could never last. It’s a miracle that he managed to pull it off for so long. Naturally, the time had to come when Zurg would bring him on full time, because if he stayed at Star Command he would eventually be caught. Whether Zurg planned for Warp to “die” on the exploding moon all along so that he could bring him in for his Uni-mind scheme, or if it was just chance that provided him with the opportunity is hard to say, but either way, Warp finally left the Space Rangers and became a true agent of evil.

It’s interesting that Warp made Buzz leave just before his “death”. He could have easily let Buzz stay and allowed him to be captured. Granted, he may not have wanted Buzz to stay because if Buzz escaped then he would know Warp wasn’t really dead, but I think deep down, a part of Warp doesn’t want Buzz to die. More on this later.

Now at this point, you’re probably going to bring up Tag Team and Ancient Evil. These episodes are the holy grail for Warp fans, and they certainly do present the idea that Warp might still have some good left in him. Let’s deal with Tag Team first.

Warp and Buzz do work together in this one, but it’s mostly out of necessity. They both want to find out what their implants are for, and later they both try to escape from the Chlorms together. So a lot of their cooperation can be chalked up to self-interest on Warp’s part. The ending is where it gets interesting. Warp could have left Buzz behind. Heck, it was his fault in the first place that Buzz was recaptured by the Chlorms. He tricked Buzz into lagging behind, probably out of fear that Buzz would arrest him if they both got away. However, in the end he comes back and saves him. The excuse he gives is that he can’t leave without Buzz because he didn’t know how to drive Buzz’s car. Probably not the real reason, right? They’d started to rekindle their friendship during their adventure with the Chlorm’s, and after all that I think Warp felt bad about betraying Buzz, and didn’t want him to be killed.

It’s important to note what happens afterwards, though. Buzz becomes hopeful that Warp will rejoin Star Command, and Warp doesn’t even consider the idea. He’s fairly amiable with Buzz, but tells him they should “go back to their adversarial relationship where they belong”, because there’s no profit in the good fight. So, here we have a case where Warp had the perfect opportunity to reform and return to Star Command, and he wasn’t interested at all. Sure, he’ll save his former friend, but he’s not going to give up his profitable evil lifestyle.

Ancient Evil provides more evidence of Warp’s hidden goodness, but also ultimately falls short of proving he would be willing to rejoin Star Command. As we see from he attempts to get off work by pretending to be sick, he is at heart self-interested above all else, which is one of the reasons he works with Buzz in this episode. Without Buzz’s help, he would have died because of what Natron did to him. That’s a pretty big incentive to side with the good guys.

When he first arrives at the planet and sees Buzz, he starts firing at him and seems excited at this unexpected opportunity to kill him. That’s hardly the kind of attitude you find in someone who wants to defect to the side of good. Obviously, after his life force is stolen by Natron and he begins working with Buzz, he softens towards his former partner, and even saves his life - but a lot of that was probably to save his own skin, since he needed to get his life force back from Natron. Saving Buzz was an act of unselfish goodness, though, but he did owe Buzz, and as I said before, I don’t think he wants to see Buzz dead. They were friends for twenty years - it’s not hard to believe that he still cares about Buzz in some small way.

At the end of it all, though, Buzz still wants to arrest him rather than offer him a place at Star Command, and Warp shows no desire to return with him. He parts with Buzz on fairly good terms, but it’s clear he still intends to lead a life of evil.

Even if he was willing to defect, Buzz’s hopes of him rejoining Star Command would never be realised. Warp has committed numerous crimes (including attempting to kill Team Lightyear - something I’ll talk about soon), and in all likelihood would be sent to prison for a long time, though his sentence would probably be reduced if he turned himself in. There’s no way they’d let him back on Star Command - he’d be way too much of a security risk, and frankly, after all he’s done, he doesn’t deserve to be a Space Ranger. They’d never be able to trust him, because if he was a good enough actor to fool them all for twenty years, he could be fooling them again. Commander Nebula would never let it happen, and I don’t think Warp would even want to come back. There wouldn’t be any profit in it, and he’d be treated like a pariah by the other Rangers.

The final nail in the coffin of the returning-to-Star-Command idea is Warp’s general lack of morality (and if you’re going to be a Ranger, morality is essential). He lies, cheats, steals, attacks defenseless planets, and tries to kill people. He even tries to kill Buzz, though I don’t think he wants to kill him, but if they’re in a fight, he’s not going to hold back.

In Rookie of the Year, he repeatedly tries to kill Buzz and his team, and also makes the suggestion to use the Matter Transport Ray on Buzz. In Large Target, he tries to kill Booster and XR. In NOS-4-A2 he tries to kill the whole team, and he does the same in Downloaded, as well as nearly destroying the Mainframe Computer, which would bring the Alliance crashing to a halt. He may not be as evil as Zurg, but he’s definitely not a moral person, and even seems to enjoy committing crimes, especially if they’re profitable.

If he did defect, it would only be if he felt it was in his best interests. Under the right circumstances, yeah, it might happen, especially if Buzz was the one doing the convincing, since they still have a bond with each other, but it would not be easy. And, I’m sorry - I know we all want to see it happen - but there’s just no way he’s going back to Star Command.

Warp has a good side, I won’t deny it, but don’t ignore the bad either. He is by no means a nice person. I think this makes him more interesting - he’s very much a “grey” character, who sometimes does very evil things, and sometimes does very good things. He’s one of the most complex villains on the show, and if you erase the evil side of him, you lose a lot of that complexity.

Thoughts or counterarguments, anyone?

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Re: Would Warp return to Star Command?

Post by Rook on Tue Jan 29, 2013 3:18 pm

I agree with all your points. I couldn't see Warp defecting back to the good guys and rejoining Star Command, but mostly for another reason that you didn't have listed. Everything Warp did as a mole for Zurg could basically come up as an act of treason against the GA. Treason is one of those crimes that usually results in a death penalty because it's betrayal on a grand scale. I don't know if the GA has the death penalty, but this could also be one more thing awaiting Warp if he turned himself in or gets arrested.

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Re: Would Warp return to Star Command?

Post by Olivus Prime on Wed Jan 30, 2013 12:19 am

A very solid response to Warp's character. I agree that, even if Warp were to "turn good", there's no way that he'd get a place at Star Command again. Then again, look at what happened to XL...

Ranger-Nova wrote:He lies, cheats, steals, attacks defenseless planets, and tries to kill people. He even tries to kill Buzz, though I don’t think he wants to kill him, but if they’re in a fight, he’s not going to hold back.

I think these actions perhaps tie into Warp's hidden goodness. The fact that he served with Buzz for all those years means he must have some kind of guilt buried away, and this causes him to be quite an insecure character - like you said, he can't fully commit himself to evil as a cause, and even when he does, he could be far more efficient.

If he were to return to being good, I'd see it as being when he's not going to come back, e.g. if he were to double-cross Zurg or suicidally destroy one of his weapons. He's spent his whole life doing immoral things, but he's also served alongside one of the greatest heroes out there, so I'd expect his guilt (which is evident whenever he ends up saving Buzz from his demise) to pull him back when he knows it's the end. By now, he probably knows that he can't live a normal life because of the consequences of his actions.

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Re: Would Warp return to Star Command?

Post by Alexa on Wed Jan 30, 2013 6:43 am

You three have said everything well in your posts, and I don't have much to add on Warp's hidden goodness or on what Star Command may or may not do in terms on allowing him back/arresting him.

However, I wanted to remind everyone that Warp does in fact work directly for Zurg. Characters like Torque, XL, and Gravitina... They were helped by Zurg initially, and they might have do some things for him occasionally (though, we never really see this beside after their intro episode besides that quick scene in A Zoo Out There), but they were mostly left to their own devices. Warp is only ever seen doing evil when Zurg wants him to.

And, as we know from Shiv Katall and Star Crossed, Zurg is very keen on not letting his workers quit or switch sides. If Warp had a "change of heart" and tried to sabotage Zurg's plans or otherwise tried to go back to Star Command, it's guaranteed that Zurg would put a bounty on his head.

I always think of Warp as being a person who does things that are the most profitable or are in his best self-interest, like Ranger said. If Warp quit being evil, he'd still have to face repercussions for his previous actions, and he'd have to face the possibility of death from an angry evil emperor. Seeing how this is the least profitable thing he could do, Warp would probably think he's better off staying on the dark team.

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Re: Would Warp return to Star Command?

Post by Ranger-Nova on Thu Jan 31, 2013 3:05 pm

Alexa wrote:I always think of Warp as being a person who does things that are the most profitable or are in his best self-interest, like Ranger said. If Warp quit being evil, he'd still have to face repercussions for his previous actions, and he'd have to face the possibility of death from an angry evil emperor. Seeing how this is the least profitable thing he could do, Warp would probably think he's better off staying on the dark team.

Yes, exactly~! I was going to bring up Zurg in my post, but I forgot. You've hit the nail on the head, though - leaving Zurg would be the last thing Warp would want to do. Even if he felt guilty, missed his friendship with Buzz, or whatever, that's no where near enough incentive for him to leave his enjoyable and well-paying job, because there'd be zero reward. Zurg would try to kill him and the Alliance would want to punish him for his crimes. As Rook pointed out, he's committed treason, so he'd certainly be looking at some serious jailtime. I can only see him defecting if it would be beneficial to him, and under the present circumstances it just isn't.

Olivus Prime wrote:I agree that, even if Warp were to "turn good", there's no way that he'd get a place at Star Command again. Then again, look at what happened to XL...

XL's case is a little different. He didn't freely choose to betray Star Command and spend twenty years as a double agent like Warp did. Part of his "evilness" seems to be the fault of bad programming, and the rest is mostly due to his anger at being rejected and his jealousy of XR (which he seems to have gotten over by the end of RotM). I'm guessing the LGMs checked him over thoroughly and stablised his programming before allowing him back, and XL did help save the galaxy, which must count for something. However, it probably still wasn't all that wise to allow him back until they'd had some time to observe his behaviour. The ending of RotM is so cute, though, that I'm willing to overlook it.

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Re: Would Warp return to Star Command?

Post by Senior Doctor Thalassi on Sat Feb 02, 2013 2:40 pm

Another point or two for comparison would be the cases of Ty and Buzz.

As we all know, on Canis Lunis, Ty became a wirewolf and attacked a sentry robot and Team Lightyear. This wasn't under his own volition; the condition itself was the result of what could only be described as a freak accident, and his actions when transformed were basically driven by animalistic instincts fueled by pain, panic and anger. He was just as much of a victim in that incident as the others, and what was Star Command's response? Discharge him on the grounds that his condition is a security risk.

And then there was when Buzz was framed with attempted assassination in "Conspiracy." Not only was he jailed, but he was facing a sentence of life on a maximum security penal colony.

Here, we have two canon examples of Star Command's disciplinary procedure. Now unlike Buzz, Warp was not framed for any of his crimes, and some of those, like Rook said, are even worse than what the Garganian militants tried to pin on Buzz, and unlike Ty, Warp's crimes were committed with clear intent, as well as premeditation for most if not all of them.

Even if the Galactic Alliance doesn't have a death penalty, I can easily see Warp facing several life sentences even if he does turn himself in. The best that could happen, as also said before, is him getting a pardon for doing something to aid Star Command in the fight against Zurg, but it would have to be something really important and useful, and it also brings up the question of if it's worth it for him, something that's already been answered.
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Re: Would Warp return to Star Command?

Post by TessaLovesOzzy on Sun Apr 28, 2013 3:41 pm

I think Warp would never return to Star Command but would at least leave Zurg's employment. But that's just me. Smile

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