Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Guest Post: A Virtual Reality Experience

Hello dear friends. I am Big Bob Pataki, Samurai Karasu's partner in love, life, and baby karate shows. Take a seat. Make yourself comfortable. Help yourself to the vast array of mineral water at your leisure. I'm here for one thing and one thing only: to make you filthy rich by exploiting children....with karate. That's just a little joke I do to ease the tension in this very real pitch meeting in the current year of 1994 that is real and not a cry for help. I hope you boys brought your big boy pants because you're gonna shit a house brick by brick when I show you what we've got in store.

You can follow along if you want, or you can just sit back and prepare to be taken for a ride. 

I hope you're not expecting alt text jokes on all of these
We Are. We Are VR Tro-Cybertron. Whatever. 

Action packed right out of the gate. Because that's what this show is. This is a white knuckle thrillride that these little shits will eat up faster than 3D Doritos. Listen to that kickass theme song that is absolutely not just "Go Green Ranger Go." Gets you hyped, doesn't it? Makes you wanna start cramming nerds in lockers. Riddle me this, what do kids love more than karate? Absolutely nothing, that's right. But what do kids love almost as much as karate? Flying robots blowing shit up with missiles. Good news, Japan's two largest exports are robots and octopus fuck cartoons. That's what we've got for you right here. What? No, just the robots. It's hard enough raising a kid in today's climate with Howard Stern Baba-Booeying strippers on the radio and now you want me to explain what that blurry mess of pixels and fluids is? Not in Clinton's America. 

There's a lot of questions to be asked in this brief intro. Who is piloting those robots? Who is in the car? Who is talking? Is Frank Welker available? Don't know, don't care, doesn't matter, and yes. You can't see the forest for the trees. What's important here is these paper mache Gundams just blew up the Bridge Over the River Kawaii and we're only 30 seconds in. Try to keep up.

We've got action, now let's set the tone. Smashcut to a vaguely Asian temple. Is it Chinese? Japanese? Dirty knees? Look at these roundhouse kicks, dork. It could be Shanghai, it could be Tokyo, it could be Pluto. It doesn't matter, at the end of the day there's a white kid doing bicycle kicks. We have a beautiful helicopter shot here to really put into perspective just how vaguely Asian this is. Ignore the fact that the music sounds like the background music you'd hear in a video on a day when the substitute wheels this bad boy into class.

One time I trusted a fart after a square pizza lunch during a Bill Nye episode about digestion and almost shit my pants. If you hovered over this picture, congratulations.
This isn't a free day. Pay attention so you can fill out the worksheet. Take one and pass it back.

Do you guys hear that? Whose voice is that? It sounds familiar, but I just can't place it. Mysterious, charming, handsome. Who could it be? We move in close. There's a man sitting by himself. He's looking pensively into the ChiJapanese horizon, contemplating life, death, and karate. Who could it be? 

Are you sitting down? Stand up, shake out the cobwebs, then sit back down and grab hold of something. We got Jason David Fucking Frank. 

A license to print money. The man of the hour, too sweet to be sour. JDF's run as the Green Ranger on your cute little show milked those Dragon-Ball-Z-Hawaiian-shirt wearing kids out of every penny in their piggy banks. We were rolling in Beanie Baby money! They're making Pogs with our dicks on them! Another 90's reference! Don't get it twisted, this isn't your daddy's Tommy Oliver. We've done a bit of rebranding to make him accessible to a hot young crowd of baby karate fans. 

It's funny because Rowsdower is only slightly more embarrassing than the name they chose for JDF, but I'm getting ahead of myself
"I wonder if there's karate on the Sun"

Take a look at that jacket. I hope none of your are ovulating or else you're gonna need plans B through Z in a hot minute before a tiny karate dog scissor kicks his way out of your womb like a chest burster. It's Xenomorphin time, shitlord.

I'm gonna tell you his name, and believe me you're gonna need a clean up on aisle tummy when you hear it. But first let's take a quick second and remember who he used to be. Tommy Oliver? The fuck kind of name is Tommy? This is a karate show for babies, not pinball. You'd have to be deaf, dumb, and blind to not realize the delicate marketing clay we're molding in our hands. And Oliver? Here's a Twist: go fuck yourself, his name is Adam Steele. 

Let that sink in.

Adam. Steele. Feels good saying it, doesn't it? Makes you wanna crack open a Surge and pound one outSo what makes Adam Steele tick? Oh you know, he's just got a cool jacket, he knows karate and HIS DAD IS MISSING. Back the funk up, are you groovin to my beat, dog? Let's put on a fuzzy camera filter and take you back ten years ago to the last time Lamborghini Jones saw his dad. Christmas morning. Dad gets him a little robot or something. See, look how happy he is. Kids LOVE robots. It's a beautiful moment. Touching. I'm getting verklempt myself. Let's bop it back to the present and catch up with our heroH MY GOD

Samurai Karasu is not on vacation. He is here. He will not let me leave. Please send help.
There are no words in this or any language to describe how hard I laughed when I saw this
A single tear. Look at that emotional range. Are you KIDDING ME right now? He can fight. He can act. He can tell jokes. He can satisfy your wife. If the eyes are the window to the soul, karate is the doorway, and I'm ready to kick it down. Who hurt you Adam? 

I know what you're asking yourself - five inches and curves to the left. I know what else you're asking yourself. Who raised this handsome man and taught him how to laugh, love, and presumably score heaps of Asian strange? Enter a fat man of questionable oriental descent who raised Adam into the man that weeps before you. We felt the Mr. Miyagi route was the right way to go as Asian surrogate karate dads are super hot right now. This is Tao Chong. Stop laughing, I'm serious. It came down to Tao Chong, Mishima Zaibatsu, and Chickita China the Chinese Chicken. Focus groups leaned heavily towards the first option as parent groups would be a nightmare to deal with if they caught wind of him throwing his son into an active volcano. 

Let's recap. We have karate. We have Jason David Frank. But we also have mystery. Intrigue. What happened to Steele the Elder? Bo Rai Cho has some answers for him. Enter: Adam's dead dad's secret lab. Stop throwing money at me, we're not even at the best part. Inside this lab is his father's greatest creation: Super Human Samurai Cybertron. Are you still holding on? Look at me. Don't just look AT me, look into me. Let me bare out my heart to you: Cybertron combines the mind and spirit of a human with robot power.

He promised me it would be different this time. "It's not gonna be like it was before. We don't have to watch Power Rangers. I just want to spend time with my morphenomenal friend." Don't believe his lies.
If you put a gun to my head and asked me what show this was from, I would whimper "Big Bad Beetleborgs?" As your finger tightened on the trigger I would squeal "Metallix?" As I closed my eyes and embraced death, all I would see is Flabber

The spirit of Porsche Slitcrusher with the power of Evangelion. Those nerds over at Power Lamers are gonna Asuka these nuts when they get a whiff of the hot fire we're cooking with over here. 

You're asking yourself "How does he become Cybertron? Does he use a morpher? Does he yell something corny at the TV?" Take that shit back to the monkey bars, because that is straight childish. We have CYBER CRYSTALS.

Adam simply stares into the crystal and it glows as he asserts himself as the alpha male of the cyber wolfpack and his mind merges with the power of Japanese stock footage. But who is he going to fight? Here at Cybertron, we're looking for a more cyberpunk twist on the karate show for babies genre. You won't find any space witches, dog monsters, or pansexual interdimensional fuck servants. You're lookin at me like you've already guessed it. That's right: angry middle aged affluent white business man named Cyrus who transforms into a nightmare monster named Grimlord who is the overlord of a robot empire.  

You're welcome. 

There's only one man that can stop Cyrus the Virus' mysterious machine militia, and that's Jason David Frank. In a recording booth. Yelling "OOOOYAH" into a microphone while Japanese men in rubber suits beat the shit out of each other. I know a certain fat guy on the Internet who woke up in a cold sweat when I typed that. 

Cybertron has everything. There's thrills. There's chills. There's heart. But here's a curveball for you: there's humor. Not only is Jason David Frank a tour de force in the world of white guy karate, but he can deliver a joke like no one's business. "Your fly is open...PSYCH. MADE YA LOOK." Arsenio's Dog Pound is gonna be woopin it up when they get a load of Steele. You're not laughing...interesting. How about a nice "See ya, wouldn't wanna be ya?" No?

I feel like I'm losing you. You're groaning. That's fine, that's not your cuppa tea. Humor is subjective. Here at Cybertron, we have an alternative to the cake falling farces that are Bulk and Skull. What if instead of two bumbling fools you had two burnout camera men who talked directly into the camera, breaking the fourth wall with a killer catchphrase? What if they were a PG Jay and Silent Bob, except instead of being silent he's actually Jamie Kennedy. What do you mean this meeting is over?

That's Cybertron. Thank you for listening to my pitch, and thank you Samurai Karasu for fucking up my Youtube recommendations beyond repair. 


  1. What i'm a little surprised by is that, unlike Power Rangers or VR Troopers as it came to air, this has, once you get past how aggressively '90s it is, a little bit of a Captain Power vibe to it. I can't quite put my finger on it, but something about the way Adam Steel is totally casual about the fact that apparently these "wardrones" have been a thing for ten years really pushes it over the edge for me.

    I wish at the time i'd had the media literacy to really appreciate that Cybertron/VR Troopers decided, as you say, to forgo the space witches, dog monsters, and interdimensional pansexual fuck servants and made the bad guy a henshin Gordon Gecko (Or would Ned Grossberg be closer?). Can't help wondering if the idea was inspired by the late 70s Canadian made-for-public-television educational series "Read All About It", where the villain was a floating-head-space-warlord who could morph into the mayor of a minor Toronto suburb.

    1. I hadn't considered it, but I think I would love it if Chojinki Metalder had been inspired by Canadian public television. (I suppose then that Captain Power is as likely to have been inspired by Metal Heroes as Robocop.)

      Actually what threw me about Gozo Kirihara is how he gets phased out of appearing in the show at all after the first few episodes, so by the time he becomes relevant again, you begin to doubt what you thought you saw.

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