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We hit a slight detour where these reviews. Response to my Captain Power review was so overwhelming (a big thank you to everybody who liked and shared it) Keith asked me if could do episodes reviews of the show episode reviews to the show. I’ll admit at first I was kind of hesitant, because I was originally thinking he meant one at a time. Now those wouldn’t be very long, and I would probably be repeating myself, a lot, when describing the episodes. But I still want to spread the love for this particular show so I’m going to be doing this in groups of three. Naturally I hope, like with my other reviews, that you will eventually explore the show on your own, and if these reviews entice you to do so, then thumbs up.

And if they don’t, you don’t know what you’re missing. Now hit the jump.

Since I showed the opening last time here’s the ending credits we got. It was also the last chance in the show you had to play with the toy jet.

I’m going to do this a little differently, I’ll be reviewing each episodes and doing my little commentary after each one. So be prepared to see my opinion a lot. As well as my particular brand of humor, or lack of. I’m not going to do any ratings here, all shows have their good eps and their bad but I will try to give a general sense on how the show is. Let’s do this.

Episode 1 – Shattered

The episode starts off Captain Power and crew on a raid of a BioDread outpost, with Scout using his imager to disguise himself as a trooper to sneak inside. Unfortunately they didn’t plan on the door having a lock that won’t open until in the morning. While they try and get him out Scout accidently activates an alarm before he sets a charge to blow the base up. They get him out right before it explodes and fly back to the Power Base. At Base Scout gets a signal on an resistance signal with a message for Power, an old friend named Athena who was also his father lab assistant. Power and Pilot investigates as Power muses on their history, playing chess on at an old bookstore. Power goes to the bookstore as Pilot stay with the ship in case the BioDreads shows up. But she gassed by an unknown assailant. Power finds the bookstore, and powers up the suit, and enters. Inside he finds a chess board set up and his old Athena. Who just happens to be dressed like the person who got the jump on Pilot. Then she tries to kill him. She explains that she was digitized during the early part of the war and brought out to capture Power. And she doesn’t want her old friend to suffer the same fate, so she tries to kill him. Good friend. Power fights her, power suit powering down in the process. Not happy with this turn of events Dread sends Soaron to the location to digitize them both. Power convinces her that it’s better to live and promises to find her in the machine and fight it together as Soaron locates them and prepares to digitize them. But Pilot was able to call in the cavalry and she and the rest of them drive him off. They bring her back to the Power base and Pilot removes a tracking chip implanted in Athena’s skin by Dread, and destroys it under her heel despite the others assurance that it’s signal can’t penetrate the base’s shield. Alone Power convinces Athena that she’s free now and they will get her the help she need and they play one more game of chess for old times sake.

This was a good introductory episodes. We get a good glimpse of everybody personality right off the bat. And we get the first hints Pilot may have something for the good Captain. We’re also introduced to Athena, her only appearance in the series, maybe there would have been more if the show wasn’t canned. We get to see her before the Metal Wars, long hair, relaxed and we learn that she and Power liked to play chess, Power apparently always starting with the same move knight to king’s bishop three (it’s a bit of a joke between them). And we see her after the war started, hair cut short with a little harder edge to her. She also tells us what it’s like to be digitized as you feel the machine crawl inside you learning everything about you, you likes, what makes you angry, who you love the works. This also gives you a reason to fear the machine a little more as our heroes face them. This episodes also brings in the Project New Order story arc for Dread’s master plan.

Episode 2 – Wardogs

A BioDread convoy is ambushed by attack force and destroys a good chunk of them after a heated battle. Hawk is scouting in the area around the time BioDread with a big honkin’ gun tries to ambush them back and destroy it and is mistaken for a “dread head” and shot down. Who says a good deed doesn’t go unpunished. When they try to remove his “memory banks”, aka his head, he fights back and deactivate his armor. After he tries to get them to talk after recognizing the Wardog insignia on their tattered uniforms their commander shows up and it’s an old friend of Hawk’s. Might I add an old female friend. At their camp sight she reveals that their headed north toward Eden 2, which Hawk says is a myth. Hawk is able to contact Power once he’s in range of the Wardogs sensor. He tells them to come in to meet the group and he informs them that there’s a secret Dread instillation that Scout and Tank are watching. But none of them realize Scout and Tank are being spied on as well. Power tries to convince the dogs to stay as Dread is cutting off any routes to the north and that they should stay and help fight they are not convinced. Power and company, minus Hawk who’s still trying to convince the Wardogs to stay, walk into a trap after it looks like Dread had ordered the base abandoned. Hawk, after spending some surprise “quality time’ with his old friend heads off to save them, and is shot down by Soaron in the process. The Wardogs arrive to save him and the rest of Power’s crew and blow up the base. At the end the Wardogs head north for their paradise and Power and company wishes them luck.

It goes without saying that this is a Hawk episode, getting a bit of his back story and the first of a few aerial fights with Soaron. And the quality time I mention before well it was a bit ambiguous. While still trying to convince her she comes into her room in a dress that leaves him speechless. She gets a bit embarrassed he says she the most beautiful thing he’s seen in a while and they kiss. Next time we see them she’s putting on her uniform. Let your mind take you where it will on that one. And there’s a bit of a running joke were every time her second in command see’s Hawk power up he say “Gotta get me one of those.” the episode also gave Hawk a bit of a choice since his friend was asking to leave with them. And to be honest if he didn’t hear that Power and the rest were trapped I think he would have considered it from the look of things. Granted it was a brief moment it was a nice human touch. It also planted the Eden 2 seed that would have played out in later seasons if the show kept going.

 

Episode 3 – The Abyss

A soldier comes out from underground and sends a signal that the Power Base picks up. But he’s caught, not by the BioDreads but his own comrades and General who said he was a good solider right before he raises his gun. Power and Hawk, who recognizes it as an old military signal from before the war, go investigate. Overmind picks up the signal as well and Dread sends Soaron to investigate. Power and Hawk get captured and interrogated (and tortured) by the General, who’s waiting for a command from the President to attack with the forces he has hidden away. Both of them try to convince him that the order isn’t going to come and that they should help the resistance. During these scenes we learn the general is not all there. He goes on to order their execution. One of his men, who tried to convince Power that he was a good soldier, sees him slipping further away when he tried to get the order lifted since they don’t know for sure. Power and Hawk try to find a way out despite the fact their power suits had no charge. So Power gets the idea to use a live power cable, not a line a cable, to try and charge the suits. It has one hell of a kick but Power is able to activate his armor. Soaron and a group of BioDreads attacks the base and the General gets flustered when he tried to give orders to him men from his office. The sane trooper from earlier orders an evacuation when the General won’t. Power fights off the BioDread as the soldiers escape but the General won’t leave his command. Soaron makes his way into the base and finds the General, who offers no resistance as he digitizes him. After the soldier are evacuated Power and Hawk leave before more forces can come in.

Now this was definitely one of the more “adult” idea concepts when it came to the show’s story telling. The “slightly insane” commander of a troop of soldiers. Seriously one of the reasons why he says they lost the Metal Wars was because there were no good war songs to motivate the men. He also uses bits of Hawk’s military career, the only survivor of his old unit, and his history, his used to know Dread before he went nuts, to say that he was was an traitor and an enemy spy. But he was devoted to his men’s safety as it was one of the reasons why he made sure they stayed out of the fighting waiting for a call he probably knew was never coming. This episodes also has the one big inconsisitntcy with the general rules of the Power suits, usually they can get deactivated after taking a few major hits. Here, admittedly rightg after getting the hit of the power cable, Power survives a barrage of laser fire and a grenade before he proceeds to kick metallic tail. Even my brother who barely remembers this show was going what the hell here. The show is usually pretty good at keeping things consistent, but they dropped the ball here in my opinion. On the other hand we see that Power and crew have another way of activating their power suits with a charging station with five different positions before they head out. There’s also a bit where Dread is recording his, I’m guessing, version of the history of the machine, he’s on chapter four in case you were wondering.

Episode 4 – Final Stand

A group of BioDreads are tracking a signal in an old building trying to locate Captain Power only for it to be a trap. One of the bots was carrying a transmitter that that has the location of the next target, an old outpost out in the middle of nowhere. They get a lock on Soaron who was in the area but he doesn’t see them yet. Using a tactic he couldn’t anticipate they take him out and he must repair himself, giving Power’s team time to evacuate the outpost. But the city is already abandoned. It looks to be the work of raiders who also left but apparently it was one man who stayed behind and recognizes Tank and is very happy. His name being Hasko and he has taken the women and children hostage trapped with bomb that will go off in one hour that he has the switch to. He will let them go but only if Tank fights him, without his power suit and to the death because of an old score. Tank agrees despite Power’s objection. Scout is able to locate the hostages location while Tank briefly plays cat and mouse with Hasko. He gets the drop on Tank and says he going to blow them up anyway. They find the hostages and get them out while Tank tries to talk him out of it. He thinks Tank might be holding back then Tank kicks him through a brick wall. Power frees and crew frees the hostages. The fight gets brutal here with Hasko getting the upper hand momentarily just as Power, Hawk and Soaron shows up allowing Tank to beat him. Hasko tries to point out where Power and the others are but is digitized instead. Soaron fights Power and crew until they escape with who was left in the city. At the end Tank wonder if he was still the monster he used to be but Power convinces him that he fought to save the hostages, therefore better.

An episode that gives a bit of background for Tank. He was genetically engineered to be a fighter, tougher, stronger. But unlike Hasko he had a conscious. There’s also a bit where Tank said he gat away from “Babylon 5”, yes he had the seeds for that show even back then. As for the rest of the episode there a bit near the beginning where that shows how bad things are now with a voice over by Power, Captain’s log style, saying the place they’re going used to have a name but not anymore. I should mention that I said in the original review of the show I thought one of the campier aspects of the show was Tank getting hit over the head with a cinder block, and it is but by 80s kid show standard that was a brutal fight, Cinder block, flaming boards and I mean actual flames. Not to mention all the head shots to the good guys and the bad guys, at one point Tank while in his Power Suit literally knocks the head off a BioDroid. Not something you could get away with today’s standards. I also like the little moral dilemma Tank had at the end where he admitted to Power that actually enjoyed beating Hasko and wonder what that said about him. Most shows would have left it with the good guys escaping, but that just gives it an extra level of depth. We also get another character bit for Dread where he get artifacts from the previous world, admires them for a second then incinerates it. Never explained why once in the series.

Episode 5 -Pariah

A troop of BioDreads are looking for a young boy that Dread wants alive. The human in command comments that he leaves a fairly obvious trail once seeing a man lying in the street. Meanwhile Power and Scout investigate a small settlement finding people who have been in a coma for days. Soaron shows up and they quickly run for cover, apparently helpless as they watch the Soaron digitizes all the helpless people. This was part of Dread plan in Project New order and wants the weapon returned so he can make more. Hawk finds the young boy from earlier and the BioDreads after him and save him. During the escape Hawk gets winged and crashes. The boy is scared of Hawk at first but slowly warms up to him, but the boy says he doesn’t know why they after him, but through the boy’s particular way of talking Hawk is able to determine that he was in a lab before this. Meanwhile Power and the rest talk about how the tent town they witness was one of several. Hawk gets in contact and tell Power his situation, but he suddenly seems sick. The human commander intercepts the transmission and tells Hawk to turn over the boy but Hawk won’t answer in order to not give away their position. Soaron gets the drop on Power’s jump ship but the get him down but the ship is damaged and has to land. Hawk is getting sicker, the boy mention he’s seen it a lot in his travel saying he’s been lucky. The boy thinks the Hawk is lying when he say they’ll get out of there seeing how everybody lies to him. Comforting the boy Hawk accidentally calls him Mitch, the name of his son who he lost. The human commander tries one last time to get Hawk to give up the boy saying he knows Hawk is sick and the boy is the cause of the coma plague and will give Hawk the antidote. The boy shouts into the communicator giving away their position and say Hawk was just going to give him up anyway. Hawk powers up and tell Power to get there and to get the kid out of there so they can find a cure. Hawk fights but is quickly overwhelmed by Soaron. Mitch tries to protect him as Power and crew shows up and rescues both of them. Later Hawk wakes up in the Power Base and they tell him mentor was able to synthesize a cure for the disease in the boy’s system, who takes he name Mitch.

A nice Hawk episode where we learn he had a son. We also had the stereotypical hero does the right thing despite his condition story bit here. And even the boy doesn’t believe him since everyone betrays him. I guess you can’t get away from that sort of thing in this type of show. Then again it’s hard to imagine why they wouldn’t do that bit of storytelling. We also hear Soaron tell Hawk that he will die. Not be destroyed, not be terminated, die. Tell me a kid show that will say that these days. But there was one thing that bothered me about this ep, Power and Pilot watching Soaron digitizing the people in the coma, they never explained why they just watched. Anything would have worked here the suits didn’t have a charge, they didn’t think they could take Soaron with just the two of them anything. But I will admit I did like the acting in that particular scene with Power with the cold hard stare right at Soaron while Pilot looked down every time the digitize beam was activated. A little bit that says a lot. We also get a bit of info on one of the stages of Project New Order.

Episode 6 – A Shot in the Dark

We start with a flashback where Dread, before he became all partially mechanized, tries to stop Soaron from harming a particular woman, blinding here. Flash forward Dread rejects the premise for a new bio form, saying it need elegance and they must find her. Soaron attacks an encampment trying to find her, one Jessica Morgan, a former artist.. Soaron digitizes the man in charge when he won’t admit that he knows who she is. Power and crew and find out and try to figure out why Dread wants her. Dread has the elder redigitzed and threaten to repeat the process until he talks, he does. Jessica refuses to run anymore but is convinced to leave with Power and Pilot. But even she doesn’t know what Dread wants. Taking her to the Power Base , after Power lets her have voice command of the sky bike since she was enjoying being in flight, Dread demands he turn her over or he will execute somebody every hour until he does. Morgan goes to Dread anyway, using the voice access Power gave her over the bike. The soldiers of the future go after her, of course. A holo image of Dread reveals his plan is to give Jessica back her sight in order to help him build his future. Power finds her but is forced to stay his hand since he came in in the middle of the operation. Overjoyed that she can see again she is quickly horrified at the current state of the world. Dread is so confident of her choice he tells the techs to leave and let her choose. She rejects Dread’s offer, despite of him warning that she will quickly go blind again if she leaves the range of the transmitter but she and Power walks out of the base, Dread is heartbroken at her choice.

I missed this episode growing up but was pleasantly surprised when I finally watched it. It gives Dread some depth and some motivation. He has regret for blinding an artist he greatly admired. Despite wanting to put humanity in immortal machine he wants them to look elegant instead of bulky. He saw a future beyond this current war and was ready to shape it into the perfect image in his mind. And his clear disappointment that she choose a world of blindness despite instead of helping him with his vision. And this was all in one episode. No villain in this, and I hate to keep repeating myself here, time period were portrayed as having this much depth. Granted he still referred to Jessica as a resource but that may have been only so Soaron could understand his order to stand down. And there were some good small bits as well, Jessica’s simply joy of flying once she’s on the sky bike, especially once Power has the bike recognize her voice commands. In fact the bike works on voice command, he tells it where to go and it goes there. Gotta love technology. And Dread’s sullen look at the end. I’ll say it again, small bits that just say so much. On a side note we also get an example of a bit of future tech that’s not meant for war, I’m talking about Jessica’s sonar like walking stick. This one is definitely one of my favorite episodes in the series.

Alright that was the first six episodes of twenty two. I’ve never done an episode guide before so please excuse me if I made a few mistakes. Hopefully this gave you a taste and I’ll be back on here in a couple of week with part 2.

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  • I vaguely remembered this series growing up, particularly the dark tone (the 80’s cool suits helped.) I decided to rewatch the series once I found out it was getting a new adaptation al’a Battlestar Galactica, and I was pleasantly surprised.

    The first few episodes are okay, Abyss and A Shot in the Dark being the stand outs. I feel the show really hits its stride later in the series when they realized they may not get a second season and decided to go all out. My personal favorites being Freedom One and Retribution II.

    I gotta say, those action scenes were great, not just for 80’s TV. You got a sense of chaos and action from them. I remember watching The Eden Road and being kind of shocked by the scene where they get attacked by the “zombie” biodreads, particularly how one of the heroes grabbed one and, not sure how to say it, slit his throat.

    I enjoyed your article (couple of grammar errors) and look forward to reading more.

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