Wednesday, June 06, 2007

YOUR PLASTIC PAL WHO'S FUN TO BE WITH!!! That's right, here are some of my favourite robots from Hollywood (Film & Television). So I've gathered a few of my robot friends together (in no particular order) for a glass of DW-40 and a bull session.
Crow T. Robot & Tom Servo -- Those two delightfully rude robots from the Satellite of Love (for those of you too ignorant to know that's from Mystery Science Theater 3000). They watch bad movies and wisecrack comments to the screen constantly; gee, they're sorta mechanical versions of me. It's perhaps very rude of me to fail to mention Gypsy and Cambot but. . .well. . .the didn't have a strong enough union to warrant a mention. But they're cool too, I guess.
The Robots of Death -- from the Doctor Who serial of the same name. A deep space mining station is manned by a group of effete, spoiled humans who cannot do anything for themselves because their every whim has been catered to by docile robots. But. These loyal and industrious servants suddenly become homicidal. Tom Baker's Doctor and Louise Jameson's savage Leela are the only ones on hand to solve the mystery of why these robots, programmed never to harm humans, are suddenly bumping them off. Personally, I'm kinda on the side of the robots; those simpering humans are annoying. Plus there's nothing like the sight of a robot with bloody hands!
R2D2 & C3PO -- OK, you can't really argue with the classics: the Laurel and Hardy of the robot community. Dithering protocol droid See-Threepio (remember that spelling?) and snarky little sparkplug Artoo Deetoo (Ditto) still manage to help the rebel alliance when they can.
Red Tornado -- been around since the 60's in comix but only just recently seen on the Justice League Unlimited cartoon (hence his appearance on this list). This nuts & bolts character has never been taken very seriously but I've always asserted (and still do) that he's very powerful so you shouldn't make fun. . .cuz with his powerful elemental tornado powers he CAN kick your ass!
Kryten -- Well, just limited so far to TV (at least until the Red Dwarf movie, long rumoured but never realized, becomes a fact). The perfect butler -- just watch out for that groinal appendage!
Bad Robot -- A slight cheat here but I love that mischievous little robot with the curly-Q on top of his head running through the field after every episode of "LOST". So, when does HE get his own show, guys??? Or at least a guest appearance as one of the Others. You just KNOW he'd make a better leader than Ben. Or Jack for that matter.
The Phantom Creeps robot -- This Bela Lugosi serial features one of the wackiest robots in screen history. So wacky, in fact, that you can ALSO find him on the back of a Rob Zombie album or two. What a sight! That over-sized scowling head wobbling on top of the robot body. Who says Bela was batty?!?
Mekagojira -- So here we have the robot version of Japan's favourite Tokyo Stomper: Mechagodzilla! Granted, he's not as charismatic at the original big fella but he makes a nice change now and then. At least he's MUCH better than that ridiculous Son of Godzilla.
Robby the Robot -- Never thought you'd see a robot participating in a version of William Shakespeare's "The Tempest"? Well, here he is; the helpfullest of helpers in "Forbidden Planet" who can rustle up a gown for Anne Francis OR synthesize some whiskey for Earl Holliman. Either feat will earn him a permanent place in my heart!
Robot from Lost in Space -- Warning! Warning! A lot of people think this is the same robot as Robby the Robot. But they are in error. He's his own robot and he's got quite a sense of humour; sparring with the irrepressible Dr. Zachary Smith.
The Iron Giant -- this is the star of one of the most delightful children's movies to come along in a long time. With a heart as big as he is, the Iron Giant can't help but win your heart. He's the sweetest visitor from outer space since E.T.
Ultima Futura Automaton -- Named by Forrest J. Ackerman waaaaaay back in the mists of fandom, this saucy robotrix starred in the original silent Fritz Lang film "Metropolis". Created by a mad scientist, this hot metal mama planned to infiltrate the underground resistance movement by taking the guise of virginal and inspiring rebel leader Brigitte Helm. Check out that mad creation scene; obviously the inspiration for the latter "Frankenstein" (1931). Hey, she even sorta looks like a female C3PO!!! Maximilian from Black Hole -- Alright, I'm strange but I LOVE this Late 70's Disney movie. Star Wars meets 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea with a little 2001: A Space Odyssey thrown in at the end. Sure the actings bad. Sure it's derivative as hell. But I still like it. And especially that totally evil killer robot Maximilian!
The Phantom Empire robots -- Another example of the silliest robots ever to come down the pike. Gene Autry and Frankie Darro battle robots that look like hot water heaters in ten gallon hats!
Marvin the Paranoid Android -- Your plastic pal who's fun to be with. My favourite version is from the TV series but the movie version was interesting too. What can you do with a robot who's permanently depressed??? Abandon him in an intergalactic car park for millenia, of course! Gort -- one of the most imposing robots we've yet encountered. The awe-inspiring sight of Gort ambling down the ramp of a flying saucer and vaporizing jeeps, tanks and guns with a beam from his visor (Holy Scott Summers, Batman!) is an indelible image from the 50's sci-fi boom kick-started with The Day the Earth Stood Still.
Bender - Of course what robot could be better than Futurama's own Bender; the robot whom one day I would like to grow up to become.
And there you have it. And NO, I don't consider the gorilla in a diving helmet star of "Robot Monster" a robot. He wasn't. Bubble machine or NO bubble machine! But these are some of my faves in the mechanical entertainment community. Have I left out one of YOUR favourites????


Cheekies said...

How can you forget Johnny Sakko'a flying robot? "Robot, finger rockets!" That was my second fav as a child just behind Ultraman who was definitely not a robot.

Cerpts said...

Well, I'm not lucky enough to own a DVD box set of Ultraman so I don't have that to refer to.

Pax Romano said...

Ah, all these Plastic Fantastic Pals!

Have you ever seen me do me "Danger Will Robinson, Danger" bit?

I love Crow T and Tom Servo (and of course, Gypsy)... they bring me back to a very special time in my life.

Cerpts said...

You do a Danger Will Robinson bit?!?!?!?! And WHY have I never experienced THAT??!?!?!?!?!?!!