Thursday, February 19, 2015

RID Video React: Meet Sideswipe

Ok, kids! Go ahead and check out transformers.com, and click here to see the video. Or you can just watch it below.

And don't forget my reaction. If you want. I was tired when I recorded.

So let's talk about one of the most beloved characters in the Transformers fandom (minus his twin, as usual).
Is that a chinese symbol on his chest plates? Japanese? Or perhaps its Cybertronian. Throughout the video there seems to be some sort of marking on Sideswipe's chest. It's unclear as to what it is… buuut it seems as though Sideswipe only gained it after he scanned an earth-alt. So it's probably not Cybertronian.

"You're a punk! You know how to take out security systems, don't you?"
"No! Maybe."

Are they… handcuffed together? Man, I wanna know the story behind this! So, at some point Sideswipe and Strongarm are gonna have to deal with each other. Actually, they're gonna have to deal with each other throughout the show. I'm actually really interested in what Strongarm and Sideswipe's relationship will be like, seeing as they are pretty much foils for each other.
Apparently the term 'punk' counts for anyone who can break into or out of something, at least to Strongarm. And apparently Sideswipe has a questionable past and occupation. We see in the sneak peek that Strongarm, and presumably Bumblebee, seems to be pursuing Sideswipe. Maybe he was caught breaking into someplace.
By the way, due to the fact that Sideswipe doesn't have any symbol besides his Autobot insignia on his chest plates, and due to the fact that he doesn't have wheels on his shoulders, and due to the fact that Strongarm's wheels are Cybertronian and not earth form, it can be assumed that this is set early on in the series, most likely on Cybertron. Perhaps Strongarm was pursuing Sideswipe and something went awry. Maybe she handcuffed him to herself after she caught him. Maybe the whole reason that Sideswipe was brought along to earth was because he happened to be handcuffed to Strongarm when she decided to pursue Bumblebee to earth.



Judging by Sides' alt-form (note lack of chinese symbol btw), this is set pretty early on in the series. Possibly pretty soon after the bots' earth fall, because I'm pretty sure that Grimlock is attacking them. Just because a bot is amnesic doesn't mean that they might react violently if provoked. And, due to his 'Con symbols, I could see the Autobots provoking Grimlock…


I'm pretty sure that Sideswipe is going to be Russell's 'guardian'. While that seems like a really awesome concept, in-universe I'm wondering what on earth, moon and Cybertron anyone was thinking giving guardianship of anyone to Sideswipe. Unless Sideswipe isn't so much Russell's guardian, but rather, his best friend, default partner, automatic protector. Kind of like Bumblebee and Sari Sumdac in Transformers: Animated.
In the Animated cartoon, Sari and Bumblebee shared a friendship typical to young pranksters. They repeatedly got into trouble (the trouble usually being Bumblebee's fault), and were a source of exasperation for the other Autobots. Sari was typically the smarter, slightly more level-headed one of the duo, maybe even the more responsible one, but that didn't stop her from pretty much being the devil on 'Bee's shoulder.
I could see Sideswipe a Russell sharing a friendship a lot like Bumblebee and Sari's, though I could also see Russell being more reserved than Sari. I could also see Sideswipe being just a little bit more responsible than Animated 'Bee. A little bit. Micro bit.
Wait, does this make Sideswipe the kid-appeal character for Robots in Disguise? Younghipwith a human as a best friend?


Underbite attacks, Sideswipe and Russell dodge, Russell runs, Sideswipe follows (into a forest). Due to the fact that Sideswipe's bot form clearly shows that he hasn't scanned an alt-form yet, this is set early in the series, maybe even right after earth fall. In the sneak peek we see Russell leading Sideswipe through a forest, showing that Russell trusts Sideswipe (also showing that this scene and that scene are connected). It might be that the first bot that Russell saw was Sideswipe. In fact, again due to the sneak peek, that is very likely. The two bond, Underbite attacks Sideswipe, Russell tries to lead Sideswipe away. Sideswipe transforms, allowing the two of them a quicker get away, but Sideswipe bumps into Strongarm and Bumblebee along the way, leading to further introductions. All of this is being theorized from the sneak peek, by the way, and there are lots of holes.

I know I've mentioned Sideswipe's very ninjutsu-esq style in the past, and it is certainly a source of fascination for me. Not only that, Sideswipe seems to take this whole fighting thing pretty seriously. Throughout all the fighting scenes I've seen so far with Sideswipe, he has never once talked. One would assume that a snarky, 'bad boy' personality like Sideswipe would at least throw a quip or two in. Now, granted, when you're really focusing even the snarkiest person would put their thoughts into the fight and not the trash talk. But this has been at the back of my mind for awhile, so I might as well get it out.
On the subject of Sideswipe's fighting style, in my Meet Team Bumblebee post I mentioned that perhaps Sideswipe is a young ninjabot and he has an origin story similar to TFAnimated Prowl. I like that theory, but it would also be cool of the writers decided to go a little bit for G1 Sideswipe's (IDW, possibly Marvel and fanon) story and give RID '15 Sideswipe a past as some sort of gladiator. Perhaps not a gladiator, but maybe an underground fighter. I know there is only so much there is allowed to be in this show, since it's supposed to be more kid friendly than TFPrime was, but I would like a gladiator backstory for Sidewipe.


Things of interest: Steeljaw. Steeljaw vs. Sideswipe. The scratches on Steeljaw's insignia(s). That stone-age-esq shelter. Is that Strongarm in said shelter?
I want to see this epic showdown so bad. Sideswipe, who is seriously no slacker in the fighting department, and Steeljaw, the self-proclaimed leader of the Decepticon convicts. It looks as though Strongarm might be unconscious. Maybe she attempted to face down Steeljaw and failed. What is the deal with those claw marks on Steeljaw's insignia? And what is the deal with that cave of branches? Is it just a cave, or might it be a tunnel? If so, a tunnel to what? If it is just a cave, then why does it exist and why is it made of branches? Is it maybe Steeljaw's temporary haunt that he built? Perhaps Sideswipe and Strongarm attempted to attack Steeljaw in his haunt. Man, I am so full of energetic theories right now.


Decepticon symbol. Yep, that's a really big, really yellow Decepticon symbol. Fascination is unbound. Perhaps Sideswipe attempted to go undercover as a Decepticon, because let's face it, Sideswipe is like Peter Bishop from Fringe: he is part of the good guys, but he can slide smoothly into the criminal/Decepticon skin/frame. Likewise, Strongarm is like Olivia Dunham from Fringe: obviously a symbol of authority, can walk into a room and people automatically know that she is an authority figure (it helps that Strongarm has the Elite Guard symbol prominent on her chassis). Anyway, yeah, it would be absolutely fascinating, and possibly disturbingly easy, for Sideswipe to go undercover as a Decepticon.

"The more parts we find the better our chances of finding fugitives nearby to recapture."

"In this grid alone there are probably-"
"Ow!"
"And that, funny-bot, is what happens when someone sticks his finger in my audio receptor."
Facts revealed: Cybertronians can leak some form of lubricant through their mouths so as to give wet willies. Strongarm takes slag from no one, but we already kinda knew that. Bumblebee (and probably Fixit as well) has some sort of geographical profile in order to track down the 'Cons, and while it sounds pretty logical, it's pretty general and the possibility of them still finding fugitives around the parts isn't really large. Sideswipe and Strongarm already have their earth alts. Sideswipe seems to go out of his way to irritate Strongarm (at risk of his arm); I wonder how far they writers'll push this middle-school hate relationship. For some reason the use of the words 'audio receptor' make me happy.
On a related note, since it's said that Sideswipe attempted sticking his finger into Strongarm's audio receptor, it suggests that Cybertronians have some sort of hole in their helm (to stick fingers into) through which they absorb sound, like humans, as opposed to… just being able to hear through some sort of unseen receptor on either side of their helms. This is odd since you don't see anything like audial holes in Strongarm's helm or anyone else's. (Granted, Steeljaw seems to have some pretty big ears, but I don't think you wanna give a wet willie to that guy).

Sideswipe dances (sort of). We already knew this, and I think it's really funny. He's really bad at vocal percussion, though. XD Ironic, considering the voice actor of Sideswipe. (Darren Criss)

Ok, kiddies! Wow, compared to my bland reaction video… Geez, this review is fragging long, and not so much a review, but rather an analysis. My Meet Bumblebee analysis probably would've been über long as well if it hadn't been for my time restriction. Also, I somehow found way more story tidbits in here than I cared to look for in the other ones (my excuse being that I was tired during the other analyses). Anyway, the point is this was way longer than I expected it to be, but I'm not done yet. Time for character analysis, predictions… and wishes.
Sideswipe is a beloved character in the Transformers fandom. A jock, a bad boy, definitely snarky, with an often vague backstory, my favorite one being that he used to be a gladiator. The G1 Marvel continuity comics suggested that Sideswipe might've been a gladiator, and the G1 IDW continuity comics briefly showed that he joined the gladitorial pits. The fandom developed the backstory quite significantly. So much in fact that it's become widely accepted fanon. Whether Sideswipe's gladitorial past is mainly fanon or not, I still want RID Sideswipe to have some form of G1 Sideswipe's gladitorial background. I think that it would be cool if Sideswipe had been in some fighting club back on Cybertron (I could see him being that kid who often gets on the wrong side of the wrong bots). But I only wish, and the possibility of this happening simply because it would be cool, or because a vague comic book story said so, or because the fandom loves and practically created this backstory, isn't very large.
Now to actually talking about RID Sides. He's obviously a bad boy, that's a no duh, and has a fairly egotistical regard of himself. He has questionable talents, some serious fighting skills, and goes out of his way to annoy Strongarm. Being friends with Russell, however, shows that he has a bit of a soft spot.
I said in a past post (and this analysis) that I'm interested in how exactly Sideswipe gained his fighting skills. He doesn't seem like the type who would join the army, and yet he has some very mean combatical knowledge under his belt. I'm not sure if the show will address this since it's a kids show, and just so long as the robots fight cool it doesn't matter how they learned to fight cool. Then again, Animated was mainly aimed at kids, and it gave some of the most touching and dark backstories ever. So who knows, maybe we will get an interesting backstory on Sides… Please be a ninjabot...
Speaking of interesting backstory, Sideswipe's suggested abilities to break security systems and the fact that Strongarm was chasing him down (sneak peek) suggests Sideswipe has a questionable pastime and/or occupation. This makes me a little more sure that Sideswipe isn't in the army. An Autobot, yes, but not part of the army. I might be wrong about this. After all, someone can still have a now law-breaking occupation and a disregard for authority, and still have been, or can be, in the army. But, when I say it like that it sounds ridiculous. Just take my thoughts as something to consider.
Ok, this post has gone for way too long, so I'm gonna have to wrap up soon. I'll just rant about one thing: Sunstreaker. Every hardcore Transfan knows that Sideswipe has a twin brother named Sunstreaker.
Depending on what you watch or read, Sunstreaker is a bit of a sociopath, with some awesome painting skills (IDW) and brutal fighting skills to match. The sociopathy might or might not be due to the fact that he, like his brother, was a gladiator (in the Marvel comics and IDW comics). Sunstreaker is also a real egomaniac with a high regard of himself and his golden paintjob. Seriously, don't touch the paintjob if you wanna live. He's kind of sullen and a little grumpy, but shows great enthusiasm when fighting and/or racing (Generation One cartoon and possibly the comics). What's most important, though, is that Sunstreaker is Sideswipe's brother, and though the comics show a fairly strained relationship (even if Sideswipe is one of the few bots Sunstreaker can get along with), when you see the two of them together in the G1 cartoon they have a pure awesome dynamic (the jet judo scene in Roll For It is one of my favorites).
And we haven't seen an onscreen incarnation of Sunstreaker since the 1980s. Oh, we get Sideswipe. We get Sideswipe in cartoons, movies and games, but no Sunstreaker. At all. SERIOUSLY!? Maybe it's because kids don't care for a sullen character, but still… SERIOUSLY?!
PLEASE, writers of RID '15. This is your chance to give us Sunstreaker! You could enter him in the second season! We haven't seen a cartoon incarnation of Sunny since the G1 cartoon! You don't have to make him a completely brutal sociopath! Maybe an angster, but still, a smartass angster. Let us finally have one of the best brother duos in the Transformers fandom onscreen! (Screw Skids and Mudflap from Bay-verse, I really didn't care for them). We, the fandom, beg you… Sunny and Sides, together onscreen at last!
Ok, I think I'm done. This was way longer than it should've been, and I need to wrap this up. The next react-to-video analysis will be on Strongarm, and that will probably be the last one. Fixit doesn't have a video for some reason, poor guy. Thank you if you read all of this.
'Til all are one.

[Check out this absolutely awesome fanart of RiD Sideswipe hanging out with a fan conceptualization of RiD Suntreaker his twin brother by blackowle on Deviantart… WE WANT SUNSTREAKER!!]

If you want to check out my other Robots In Disguise posts, the links are below.
RID Video React: Meet Grimlock
RID Video React: Meet Bumblebee
RID Video React: Meet the 'Cons
RID Video Reaction: Meet Team 'Bee
RID Video Reaction: Meet the Autobots
RID Decepticons: GOTTA CATCH 'EM ALL!
RID (2015) Season One Trailer Analysis
RID (2015) EPISODE SNEAK PEEKS! Masters of Destruction
RID (2015) EPISODE SNEAK PEEKS! Bumblebee's Mission
Happy 2015! Also, Robots in Disguise update
Robots In Disguise 2015 DECEPTICON UPDATE!
Robots In Disguise (2015) UPDATES!
Robots In Disguise sneak peek! Review!
Transformers Prime sequel series! Rant!

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