Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Saturday Morning's Forgotten Heroes: Transformers: Robots in Disguise (2000)

Some of you might not realize this, but the Transformers were a mainstay of Fox's children's programming in the late 90's and into the beginning of the 2000's. After a pair of CGI series produced by Canada's Mainframe Entertainment (Beast Wars & Beast Machines), Fox switched gears and acquired a more traditional animated series, imported from Japan by Haim Saban (Mighty Morphin Power Rangers).

Known as Car Robots in Japan, Transformers: Robots in Disguise quietly snuck onto the Fox Saturday schedule during the 2000-01 season. While some of the sound effects carried over from the original, weekday Transformers series in the 80's, and the scene transitions, using the logos of the Autobots & Decepticons were borrowed from Batman, Robots in Disguise attempted to forge its own place in Transformers lore. Here's the open to Robots in Disguise, which was the first series to use the current Transformers logo:

The series was gone by the end of 2001, a victim of, more than likely, declining ratings. All succeeding series, starting with 2002's Transformers Armada, aired on Cartoon Network, but the rights now belong with Hasbro's own network, The Hub, which conceivably could air all of the series in due course.

Rating: B.


Steven Dolce said...

It sucks that this series first aired in the US 3 days before 9/11.

hobbyfan said...

Try again, Steve. I said this was a mid-season replacement, so it was probably in reruns the week before 9/11/01.

Steven Dolce said...

Well according to Wikipedia, The Japanese version (Car Robots) aired from Wednesday, April 5, 2000 to Wednesday, December 27, 2000 on TV Tokyo in Japan. The English dub (Robots In Disguise 2001) aired from Saturday, September 8, 2001 to Saturday, March 30, 2002 on The Fox Network's Fox Kids block in the USA.