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Some thoughts on Hasbro...perhaps why they should be taken over by TFM? So we can avoid problems like these?

Musings from a member of TFM.

Hmmmm...I started thinking about something. The original BW were, I think, entirely designed and engineered in Japan and became very popular (even if it did take a few years). Hasbro starts taking control of the line in order to "follow and anticipate trends of US consumers." They start designing and changing the direction of the show, and even though the toys are still engineered in Japan, they are designed in the US. The toys start to suck. The market collapses. (Okay, it hasn't collapsed yet, but it could if the Beast Machines sucks.)

Did the same thing happen with G1? I know the first two years were entirely Japanese toys, but then Hasbro started adding other toys (Omega Supreme = lame, Shockwave = okay, deluxe Insecticons = lame) not even made by Takara. The 1986 gestaults just sucked in general, as did most of the 1986 TF's (so I thought as a kid, and still believe it mostly). Did Hasbro start to "follow and anticipate trends of US consumers" at this point? The toys start to suck: Pretenders, Micros, Action Masters, 'nuff said. Did Hasbro destroy their own market, by trying to anticipate it?

...my friend, you give them too-much credit. They simply follow the dollar, and throw out any crap they can. There was no real truth behind, "anticipating." That's just a nice phrase they use.

Where have all the molds gone?

Another member of TFM suggests a new target.

Would YOU like to have seen more of the G1 toys re-released? So would we...we don't know which rumor to believe with regards to why certain toys were picked in the G2 line-up. Some say the rest of the molds simply weren't available; that they were destroyed in a fire; some say they were thrown out, some say that many molds were over-used, and these were the only ones that could be retooled/salvaged, some say it was a randm choice, and the rest of the molds are sitting happily in a warehouse, waiting to be used again...if anyone has any information on this, please let us know. The TF Militia will gladly devote resources to finding the location of these lost molds, if they still exist. If not, we will bring to justice those responsible for letting them slip away...

News from the Front: We are assembling a recon team for a mission into Japan, and the headquarters of Takara. If you would like to know more about this up and coming mission, email us for details.

Random Thoughts:

Media 101; How to Manipulate the Masses. Every good producer has had the class. Ours was taught by someone from PBS that reminded me of J. Bullock. I don't believe it was necessarily the technique itself that initially upset me, although due to the subject matter, it no doubt played a part. I wish I could fully articulate what upset me so much during the first screening. It might be my stick-in-the-mud nature; I like the nice, comfortable rut over the new and unknown. I do that every time some new aspect of the TF mythos is revealed. Hm. Upon further reflection, I realize I've pretty much been upset since the movie in '86. Oh, oh. realization time here. Thanks a lot; in responding to your letter, I'm being forced to go deeper and do another one of those "gut" checks, this time with regards to transformers. And since you started the process, you get to come along for the ride. :-) Ah, the joys of communication and sharing ideas with our fellow man.

(Insert wierd twilight theme music here.)


So there I was, in theatre, all comfortable and excited to see my favorite characters on the big screen. Movie plays, movie ends. Ths wasn't the cartoon anymore. The horror, hurt and betrayal. The violence. The death. The loss of old friends. This is NOT what I had signed up for. And there was no sense in trying to watch the re-runs on TV. I knew the truth, I understood death; they were gone, and not coming back.

Months later, the realization of why it was done, at least in terms that a kid can understand; promoting new product. The cynical Fred is born. Transformers are never looked at the same again. Words cannot describe what I thought of the "big, bad" company; it's hard to get a grasp on these things at such a young age. But it would all be made clearer as I got older.

Ah, new episodes of the TV show. And I'm a bit older; Transformers are machines, and I know how to fix machines. What's this? A TF funeral barge? Are they all there? Yes! There's still hope! Call out the creation matrix! Get me Vector Sigma on the line. And hand me that screwdriver. We're going in. We are here to help. We will make things right again.

But we were never given the chance. What writer thought up the one-way trip into the sun? Was a Hasbro exec standing behind him, saying, "yea, that'll show em. Can't bring em back from that." I bet he hated children. Someone shoot them. We've been traumatized enough. Why must all hope be taken away? Why? WHY?!

Another year passes, and Optimus Prime is back. Our heart soars. We are so over-joyed, we can ignore all the various animation and continuity errors. They don't matter; all that matters is that he's back!

And then that painful scene where all the rest of our friends are killed, their powercores ripped out to fuel the fires of madness. Sure, there was a rebirth, a new golden age, but did they all survive? One has to wonder. Horrible flashbacks of the movie, and of that funeral barge, abound. And the show finally, mercifully ends. We can go on with the rest of our lives.

Generation 2, and Beast Wars. But the Cynical One has firmly established himself within the Collective. They pass by with barely any notice. There are more important things like paying the mortgage to worry about. Leave this kidvid drec to someone else. Until someone mentions that they've found the ark. And Optimus Prime. What?! How? Why? Can this possibly be true? His spark lit, he immerses himself in the new show, watching it from beginning to end. And finds a glimmer of respect for this Beast Wars shenanigins. It's not too-bad afterall. It's a nice fit with the rest of the mythos. Wierd, but nice.

But remembering that in the end, it's still about Hasbro, and the almighty dollar puts a damper on my enthusiasm. As idealistic as I am, wanting a story apart from all of this, I do understand how they are inexorably linked. With no potential profit, we wouldn't have the story in the first place. And so despite my best efforts to stay away, I am once again brought on-board. The machinery grinds on.

...and to think that this is the short version. :-) In the end, although I respect all that has been done, and do enjoy it...my nature being what it is, I will find and accentuate the negative first. I still want to suggest taking over Hasbro, and cutting the chains between them and the story. I want to make things RIGHT. Those in the know, who currently have the power, well...they are doing one heck of a job with what they have right now, but...they need to go back to the beginning. They need to rebuild that which was destroyed so many years ago. I am hopeful, but frankly...not all that hopeful. It's simply too big of a job. They will try, but in the end, they will fail. The bottom line will drag it down once again, no matter how much Hasbro tries to gloss it up. Another Evil Empire needing to be destroyed...perhaps the TF Militia can be called in to help. :-)

...but it brings up an interesting point. With the fans in control, instead of the money-hungry executives...think what we could accomplish! Putting all those fanfics on the big screen, perhaps? Making all the old toys over and over again, so we can ALL have them? Making the ultimate transformer? Who would it be? The possibilities are endless...

But who knows? I was firmly against Beast Wars for most of the time...they managed to win me over. Perhaps Bowel Movement will, as well. But only if the "beginning" they go back to involves revisiting G1 again. :-) Which, if I recall the Bob Skir Q and A correctly, won't be happening. Ah, well. Back to cynicism...

More information to be added soon...the argument rages on! Learn details of how the fans altered Beast Machines to include more of G1! Did the TF Miltia have a hand in it? You BET! Stay tuned for this, and how Hasbro will be convinced to release more Japanese characters in America!

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