This is a Netflix Original animated series that is the latest take on the Transformers franchise. This is a set three part series that will tell an overall story about the conflict between the Autobots and the Decepticons. This first part is titled “Siege” and tells the end of the war on their home world. That is of course Cybertron, and it’s really disappointing that they skip right towards the end. This is such a ripe conflict that happens over a millennia and we rarely ever get a glimpse into the scope of this conflict.
The games are the only piece of media like this, that I’ve seen really dive into the war. It’s always some silly rush to reach Earth, and that is sadly the case again here. This starts with a grim outlook, the Autobots are depleted and they’re scavenging for Energon. This sets up a conflict between leaders Optimus Prime (Jake Foushee) and Megatron (Jason Marnocha). For whatever reason, the Autobots magically get more forces throughout the episodes, as new characters are introduced. This definitely ruined the look of a depleted force, as honestly who knows how many more are out there.
They do balance this cast well, and I actually did quite enjoy this. At the same time, it’s sort of tiring to be told the same story so many times. I get that this felt fresh to a degree, and that it was an enjoyable time. I just felt that it didn’t really offer anything new material wise when it comes to the story. It changes some characters to a degree, and make Optimus seem like he doesn’t quite know what he’s doing. With that, it does set up somewhat of a deeper potential story with impactful moments. Those key parts that I won’t go over since they’ll spoil things, do hit the mark.
I did find the pacing odd at times, but with shorter episodes it was an easy binge to get through. It was neat to see squad dynamics at play, and how certain allegiances were debated. That being said, some shifts were odd considering how long the factions have been fight at this point. It did have some good humor to it, but I was also just wanting something more or different.
I had hoped with the title, that this would show more of the conflict that got the Transformers to the point of a destroy Cybertron. Instead, we’re once again wallowing in the ruins of it. They talk of what led to this point, and I wanted to actually see it. What’s here is alright, it hits the mark while showing fans something you’ve seen a dozen times. If you’re new to the concept of the Transformers, it’s a good entry point and perhaps a fine overall take on the journey to Earth.
I really liked the animation efforts here, Roosterteeth did a great job on them. The various characters are rocking an old school aesthetic with slight adjustments and they’re sleek. I did quite like the designs that were showcased, and the environments as well. Cybertron is now one truly desolate landscape. The movements were great, though overall the pacing did feel slow at times.
Not a whole lot of conflict, but a ton of chatting. I did at times find the dialogue to be a tad awkward, but it worked for what this was I suppose. I wasn’t too impressed by the audio in this one, the sound effects didn’t have much of a punch. It also didn’t quite seem to hit that iconic sound, or music at any point. It’s cool when movies or series leave their mark on the themes, and that just wasn’t present at all.
The voice acting was fine, the voices might sound odd if you’re an older fan. I felt Foushee’s Optimus Prime was ok, yet not perfect in regards to sounding how I’m used to the character sounding. I think that they effectively pushed the rating this one had for youth, since it is targeted at the younger audience. It’s certainly fun at times, and honestly I was left with a sense that I did actually enjoy what I watched. That doesn’t mean it escapes criticism however, as I have had many thoughts on it. I would assume you get that, having read up to this point within the review article.
Transformers: War for Cybertron Trilogy Season 1 Siege provides a solid starting point for the series, while retreading the exact same material that fans have witnessed many times prior. I’m just tired of seeing this exact same origin. They should have really ended with this arc, instead of pushing towards it as fast as possible. I get that two more seasons are coming, and I look forward to watching them.
I’m just tired of seeing the same narrative structure every single time a take on the Transformers is done. Just once in film, or as a series I’d love to see more of a look at the whole war for Cybertron. They talk of peaceful times, and an uprising. It would have been great to actually see that in practice, to really understand the breakdown of this society that produced a millennia spanning civil war.
That would be awesome, there are so many conflicts that could happen. Instead, we get a dark take on the last days with a desperate depleting, yet not so depleting Autobot force that means to find their own way out of the situation. I’d used another phrase there, but I again don’t want to spoil anything story wise for those wanting to jump in. This was an alright watch, it had some strong moments and I was pleased after watching it. At the same time, I had hoped for something more unique. Oh, and the action scenes were too few.
Transformers: War for Cybertron Trilogy Season 1 Review at Home with Streamed Viewing
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