Sunday, June 2, 2013

The Great (film) Debates vol. 82

Yes, robots take our jobs (and our women) and I'm sure the robot holocaust is going to suck, but some of them are cool!

What is the coolest robot on film?


Panelist: AndrewPrice

So many great robots! Everything from R2D2 to Crow T. Robot. But when it comes to robots, there's only one... the king of all robots... the bending unit from Mexico: Bender. He's maniacal. He's petty. He's a thief. He smoke and drinks. He is the ultimate robot.

Panelist: BevfromNYC

I thought there was a robot question! I have always had a great fondness for Robot from Lost in Space and Rosie from The Jetsons. Those weren’t actually in “films”, but they were still cool. I still long for the day that I can actually just enter a tube and my hair/makeup/clothes will just be done. Maybe one day...

Panelist: Tennessee Jed

Not my strong suit with this question. I guess I'll go back to the original Gort in Stood The Day the Earth Stood Still. "Gort, Verada Nictu," as spoken by Michael Rennie, sealed the deal for me.

Panelist: ScottDS

Technically he's a cyborg but it doesn't get any cooler than RoboCop: "Part man, part machine, all cop" according to the poster. They're currently filming a new "reboot" which I am preemptively labeling as the most useless movie ever made. "Serve the public trust, protect the innocent, uphold the law"

Panelist: T-Rav

As a kid, I was a big fan of R2-D2. Unlike C-3PO, he doesn’t whine about everything—he actually had an upbeat personality that was very expressive; and he was always useful in a fight or to jack into an electronics system and open a blast door or something. And since the Terminator, as Kyle Reese explained, is a cyborg and definitely not a robot, R2 it is for me.


Comments? Thoughts?

59 comments:

K said...

Robby rules.

AndrewPrice said...

Nobody beats the Transformers as visualized by the Plotmatic 3000.

Anonymous said...

I'm going to have to go with a tie on this one.

Since Andrew already mentioned the SOL's resident troublemakers...

First, I select...the Terminator. (The T-800 from the first movie.) It's ruthless, efficient, and just looks like a frickin' demon in robot form!

Also, T-Rav, I have to respectfully disagree with your reasoning. I side with the definition that cyborgs are either mammals enhanced by electronics, or hybrid organisms that depend on both their biological and technological halves to survive. (The Borg are the probably the best example here.) Terminators don't need their flesh to function; it's only camouflage. Because of that, I see Reese as either an unreliable narrator, or just spouting jargon. After all, he's a soldier by profession- not a scientist.

Second, I must go with...Mechagodzilla. Let's face it. Other than Ghidorah and Gigan, he's simply Godzilla's best enemy. He made Godzilla bleed, suffer an arterial spray, mocked him by briefly imitating him (Terminator-style), buried him alive, set him on FIRE(!), was enhanced with Godzilla's DNA, and even killed him once! (The Big G was then revived by a dying Rodan.)

Here's a medley of the many versions of Mecha G from over the years: LINK (Sorry about the music, Andrew. But it's the best visual medley I could find!)

-Rustbelt

Anonymous said...

And Andrew, speaking of Transformers...

(monotone voice)

I think this guy would make a great presidential candidate.

A robot of the people.

Just look at what he stands for, uh, um...

(Megs raises the fusion cannon)

Uh, just vote for him, won't you?

-Rustbelt

BevfromNYC said...

Andrew - I agree Bender rules! But the so does Rosie...

Anonymous said...

I vote for the Terminator as portrayed by Arnold.Yeah,he was a cyborg,and I'm certainly not a tech guy,but as I understood it a cyborg was a machine.They were built on a metal chasis then covered with harvested human skin so they could infiltrate human camps and do their thing.Definitely The first terminator.
Second would be R2D2. As it happens The Empire Strikes Back was on last night and as T-RAV pointed out,he was damn handy to have around.
Now Roy Batty just walks away with the freakin'cool badass award, but he was a replicant, Still, he wasn't human. Or was he after all? Hmmm.... :)
GypsyTyger

Anonymous said...

OOPS! I should read these things more carefully. I read the panelist's answers then scrolled down to respond.
As I understand the term cyborg Rustbelt nailed it.Reese was trying to explain to Sarah what the terminator was,but he misused the term cyborg. Robocop was a cyborg,part actual human being,part machine. The Terminator was a robot covered in skin to camouflage it.

Tennessee Jed said...

I never saw Metropolis" but pictures I have seen of "False Maria" look pretty cool. Also, Darryl Hanna as PRIS is pretty awesome.

Floyd R. Turbo said...

The evil robot from The Black Hole was better than his material.

Cherry 2000 of course. :-)

tryanmax said...

Man, there are a lot of good robots. My favorites are the ones in supporting roles. The coolest robots never get to be the stars. Why is that?

So, the coolest robot by far is Grimlock. C'mon, he's a robot that turns into a freakin' T-Rex! No contest!

Kenn Christenson said...

The Cylons from the original BSG were pretty cool! Couldn't get into the CGI versions of the reboot - not very menacing, when they're obviously computer generated.

...and, then there's #6 on the reboot. :)

AndrewPrice said...

Rustbelt, Weird Al! LOL!

I never really thought about the T-800 being a cyborg or a robot, I guess I just accepted whatever the film said, but you're right -- it's not a cyborg at all. You could actually cover it in anything. In fact, you could make a Muppetborg that way and cover him in Muppet skin. :)

So you're not a fan of Jet Jaguar? Knock Knock


P.S. I love the "Destroy All Hope" poster!

AndrewPrice said...

Bev, Rosie is a good deal more competent than Bender! But she doesn't smoke or steal or try to destroy all humans... so she's suspect in my eyes... you just can't trust robots like that! ;P

AndrewPrice said...

GypsyTyger, It's hard to argue with either choice. R2 is handy and he can serve drinks. The T-800 gets things done (unless you elect him as governor).

I thought about Roy too, but he's got a huge defect -- a 4 year lifespan. Planned obsolescence... so you have to buy a new one ever four years. Who knows though, maybe there are some aftermarket parts to fix that?

AndrewPrice said...

Jed, A robot from the 1930s? She's probably running Windows 3.1 still. ;P

In all seriousness, that shape has become the iconic shape that so many robots copy.

I liked the Replicants a lot. It would be interesting to know more about them.

AndrewPrice said...

Floyd, I like The Black Hole a lot, but yeah, the robot wasn't given much to do.

AndrewPrice said...

tryanmax, What a way to combine two favorites of kids into one! All he needs to do now is poop Legos! :)

AndrewPrice said...

Kenn, No. 6 is a pretty cool robot... great lines. ;)

I love the original cylons. I thought the remakes were ok, but they were too CGI to be believable. Plus, they never used them for anything.

tryanmax said...

Well, as long as we're talkin' Cylons, we may as well discuss Number 6. But why talk when a picture is worth a thousand words? And a thousand pictures...


Also, check out this bit of awesomeness.

AndrewPrice said...

That is awesome. The Fraken Toasters! LOL!

Floyd R. Turbo said...

I hope there's not a Number 6 dance.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EM-lxsxeXBI

On a side note... could that joke even be done today?

Floyd R. Turbo said...

Data in First Contact -- along with the Borg Queen.

Also Bishop in Alien and Aliens

Westworld had great robots too... Yul Brynner!

AndrewPrice said...

Floyd, LOL! The old No. 6!

No, you couldn't do that joke today. Of course, you couldn't do half the jokes in that film today.

AndrewPrice said...

Floyd, Brynner was an excellent robot. He was very believable.

T-Rav said...

Rustbelt, I'm just going by what the movie says. Certainly Kyle Reese would know a thing or two about sentient machines, having fought them for so long.

Plus, keep in mind that the flesh exterior isn't mere camouflage as we would understand it. That's all living tissue--it has to be; otherwise it would start decaying and quickly be of no use whatsoever--and requires all the functions of a living organism to stay that way. And while the flesh, blood, hair, etc. may be incidental to the Terminator's ability to kill people, it's designed not just for killing but for infiltration, making that exterior crucial to its purpose. Therefore, I stand by the description of the Terminator as a cyborg.

Also, I don't believe it's a T-800. I'm fairly sure the Arnold model was referred to as a T-101, while Robert Patrick in Terminator 2 was a T-1000 and the chick in Terminator 3 was....something.

AndrewPrice said...

T-Rav, I looked it up just now... got curious. The Wikipedia (which we know is NEVER wrong) says Arnold is the T-800 and the liquid metal guy is a T-1000. The chick is a T-X.

Interestingly, the Wikipedia page for the first movie doesn't give a number and I swear I recall him Reese calling him a T-100 or something like that. So who knows?

tryanmax said...

Kyle Reese refers to Arnold as a Cyberdyne Systems Model 101. In T2, his boot HUD displays "CSM-101 T-800 Version 2.4." In T3, he refers to himself as a T-101. It is also revealed in T3 that he is a T-850 upgrade.

For my money, I think the T-1 looks totally badass, and there is no question that it is a robot and not a cyborg. Also, the Moto-Terminators from T:Salvation are cool.

And if anyone is curious, Cameron from Sarah Connor Chronicles is never identified by model number, though it seems most likely she is a T-900.

AndrewPrice said...

I am reminded of a Star Trek episode ("The Ultimate Computer")...

Kirk: "What happened to the T001 through T-800?"

Arnold: "They were not entirely successful."


I'm also wondering if anyone just thought about yelling, "Control Alt Delete!" when Arnold came after them?

PikeBishop said...

Hands down for emotion-less human-looking thing, Al Gore in "An Inconvienent Truth."

T-Rav said...

Who knows, indeed. I don't even know what most of those abbreviations mean.

AndrewPrice said...

PikeBishop, True! That was the ultimate robot! I just wish they had made him more lifelike. He's hard to believe. :P

AndrewPrice said...

T-Rav, Whatever else they mean, they mean one thing: If someone asks if you know Sarah Connor... you tell them, "NO!"

USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

"The T-800 gets things done (unless you elect him as governor)."

I beg to differ, Andrew. He was following his programming to destroy civilization, only not quite as efficiently as democrat terminators but still effective nonetheless, lol.

Excellent post and comments! I'll go with Robot from Lost In Space (the main reason I watched the show...other than Penny of course) but Skynet itself is the most diabolical and efficient killing machine.

AndrewPrice said...

Ben, So it was an evil plot after all! LOL! :)

Danger Will Robinson!

USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

Aye, Lol!
To be fair, Arnold did start off well, but whenhe realized the majority of voters in Cali-fornia wanted to be destroyed his programming kicked in and he obliged them.

Skynet is surely laughing than so many humans can't see the destructive consequences of their choices.
Makes Skynet's job a helluva lot easier I reckon.

AndrewPrice said...

You now, compared to Google and Microsoft, Skynet doesn't seem so bad.

USS Ben USN (Ret) said...

Indeed. Corporate chronyism is the new communism. Their goal is to restrict our choices to only them and to punish anyone who exercises their liberty if it opposes their goals.

Yeah, Skynet doesn't seem so bad compared to the bad big business/politician power merger (which is anti-liberty to it's core).

At least Skynet unites humans.

Anonymous said...

Andrew- The T-800 gets things done-unless you elect him governor. Great comment. Wouldn't it have been great if he had stayed in terminator mode? "Your food stamp cards and free housing vouchers - give dem to me..." RRRRRIIIIIIIIPPPP
Ah well
GypsyTyger

Voz said...

Any more politics of Trek in the near future? I had been watching through the series and stopped for a while but just watched 3 or 4 the other day...the Gamesters of Triskelion was one of them...

tryanmax said...

I believe Obama's designation is D-800. Biden's designation is D-FECT.

ScottDS said...

What?! No love for the robot in this classic TV show?

I was joking about the "classic" part. :-)

AndrewPrice said...

Ben, At least Skynet was open about its intentions... unlike Google. Google actually has a corporate motto that reads: "Do no evil." Apparently, the "no" was a typo.

AndrewPrice said...

GypsyTyger, It would have made him a better governor.

trynamx, Biden's also running on Mo-RON chip.

Obama's model is probably the LA-Z 0.0

AndrewPrice said...

Scott, I actually remember that! LOL!

AndrewPrice said...

Voz, Probably after the summer I'll return to Trek.

AndrewPrice said...

BTW, for all of you watching Game of Thrones, all I can say is WTF? I guess it was time to thin the cast.

tryanmax said...

Scott, I see your Future Cop and raise you a Small Wonder.

ScottDS said...

tryanmax -

I'm aware of Small Wonder... after watching the title sequence, I don't think I need to watch any more. :-)

T-Rav said...

Oh. Did someone die? ;-)

Backthrow said...

Julie Newmar as MY LIVING DOLL. Ha! Try and top that!

As for the old nuts-and-bolts style, I'd have to go with FORBIDDEN PLANET's Robby.

Lots of great robots, however... Maria from METROPOLIS, Terminator (any version), Wall-E and Eve, The LOST IN SPACE Robot, Astro Boy, Yul Brynner in WESTWORLD, Kronos, The Twonky, Mecha Kong, The Iron Giant, this renegade O-bot cutie...

--oh, and Al Gore at Harvard (was this the inspiration for LOVE STORY?).

Anonymous said...

Oh, I'm late getting back into this one. Full day of yard work. I'm gonna be sore tomorrow.

Andrew, you just HAD to bring up Jet Jaguar! My beef with him is simple: he can only beat bugs, he needs Godzilla's help to beat alien cyborgs, and- as MST3K clearly implies- he looks like Jack Nicholson with an overdone facelift (to cover the insecurities) while dressed like a Power Ranger (his mother definitely didn't love him).

But since we're bringing the crew of the SOL back into the picture, I'm proud to say I've found a new candidate for president! (Glad you liked the "Destroy All Hope" poster!)

And then there's this...

T-Rav, I stand by my stance. Plus, Reese said he didn't know much about tech stuff anyway.

Tryanmax, this is for you. (Just scroll down to the pic of Grimlock in front of the computer and check out the caption.) Also, is it now a federal crime to admit that- as a misguided child- I actually liked "Small Wonder?"- which I swear I only watched because it had a robot? ('Cause if it is, it's been nice talking to all of you...)

Also, who would've guessed this Decepticon actually had a sense of humor? (Note: higher volume may be required.)

-Rustbelt


Anonymous said...

Oh, yeah...

And since there's so much love for the T-800 on this thread, how could I not post this?

-Rustbelt

AndrewPrice said...

T-Rav, You could say that.

AndrewPrice said...

Backthrow, Julie Newmar is great! :)

AndrewPrice said...

Rustbelt, He does look a lot like a Power Ranger, doesn't he?

shawn said...

Man, late to the party on this one.
Have to vote The Terminator. 2nd place would go to the 70's era Cylons.

Cyborg-rise- Original trilogy Darth Vader.

rlaWTX said...

Twiki from Buck Rogers (since I didn't see it listed above - loved that show!!)

Cylons!!! (original)

R2D2

the grandma-like robot in Twilight Zone

If they ever did Asimov's Robot/Elijah Bailey series justice, R. Daneel Olivaw would be pretty awesome...

AndrewPrice said...

I like Twiki a lot as well. That was a fun show! :)

AndrewPrice said...

Shawn, I like the original Cylons as well.

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