Cold Spell

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Challenge of the GoBots ep 26
ColdSpell leader1 turbo frozen.jpg
"Cold Spell"
Production code 0142-8515
Production company Hanna-Barbera
Airdate October 21, 1985
Written by Alan Burnett
Animation studio Wang Film Productions

It's Dive-Dive's time to shine when the Renegades take control of human scientist Professor Frost's weather-controlling Climatizer.

Synopsis[edit]

ColdSpell divedive scooter.jpg

Guardian submarine Dive-Dive is called in to help UNECOM recover a satellite that has fallen from orbit into the ocean. Dive-Dive is thrilled at the prospect, as there is little use for his alternate mode on GoBotron, and eagerly heads into the drink with Nick at his controls while Turbo, Scooter, and Matt await their return on a UNECOM battleship. Unbeknownst to the heroes, the Renegades are lurking in the skies above in Thruster, hidden by their stealth device, waiting to pounce and steal the satellite when Dive-Dive resurfaces. Before they get the chance, a sudden atmospheric disturbance buffets Thruster, while huge water spouts form below to threaten the UNECOM vessel. The Renegades abandon their mission and pull out, while Dive-Dive, having successfully recovered the satellite, returns to the surface and pushes the boat out of the spouts' path. Afterward, the storm ceases just as suddenly and mysteriously as it began...

ColdSpell frosts ultimatum.jpg

Reports of other bizarre weather phenomenon reach UNECOM from around the globe and General Newcastle initially suspects the Renegades. He is proven wrong when the true architect of the world's weather woes hacks into UNECOM's communication frequencies: disgraced scientist Professor Robert Frost, who was drummed out of the military for his plans to create a weather-controlling weapon known as the Climatizer. His device now perfected, Frost instructs the general to inform the nations of the world that he will be auctioning his meteorological manipulation services off to the highest bidder, then deactivates his comm line before they can trace it.

Though UNECOM is left with no clue where Frost is hiding, the Renegades successfully back-track the ionized signal that created the weather disruptions to Antarctica. There, they discover that Frost and his sole supporter, his weedy nephew Sidney, have used the Climatizer to create a tropical oasis, surrounded—as Cop-Tur painfully discovers when he tries to enter it—by a dome of ionized energy that electrocutes anything that touches it. Unfortunately for Frost, Screw Head is easily able to tunnel under the energy dome, allowing the Renegades to take control of the Climatizer and set Frost and Sidney adrift on an ice floe. Cy-Kill subsequently contacts UNECOM to inform them that the Climatizer is now in his hands, and gives Earth three hours to renounce its alliance with the Guardians, or else he will use the machine to plunge the planet into a new ice age.

ColdSpell command center shorts out.jpg

Deducing how to track the Climatizer, the Guardians soon make their way to Antarctica. Dive-Dive goes with the team, just happy to be involved even though he and Scooter remain behind manning the Command Center while Leader-1 and Turbo head for Frost's oasis. Realizing that Leader-1's forcefield will likely allow him to penetrate the ionized dome, Cy-Kill uses the Climatizer to sweep the two GoBots up in a tornado which he then freezes solid, trapping them inside a pillar of ice. Forced to step up, Scooter and Dive-Dive pilot the Command Center into action, but when it makes contact with the ionized dome, its directional systems are shorted out, and it walks itself backward, off the ice shelf and straight into the ocean. Scooter quickly begins repairs, but as he does so, General Newcastle makes contact, and upon hearing the bad news, wonders if Earth should surrender to Cy-Kill's demands to save itself. Dive-Dive insists that they must keep fighting, and the general agrees.

ColdSpell divedive under fire.jpg

With Scooter unable to survive in the waters outside, Dive-Dive's submarine mode means he is the only Guardian left to stop the Renegades' plot. He heads out with Nick, who surveys the surface through Dive-Dive's periscope and spots Frost and Sidney drifting out to sea. Dive-Dive surfaces to bring the two men aboard, but they are spotted by Screw Head and Cop-Tur, sent to scan the horizon for the aquatic Guardian. The two Renegades don't consider Dive-Dive a serious threat, but Cop-Tur is soon shown the folly of underestimating him when Dive-Dive unleashes a subsurface-to-air blast that knocks him out of the sky. With only seconds to spare until Cy-Kill's ultimatum is up and the effects of the Climatizer on Earth become permanent, Dive-Dive follows Frost and Sidney's directions and blasts away at the seabed to reveal the base of the Climatizer's antenna. A few well-placed blasts trigger a chain reaction that causes the machine to explode in Cy-Kill's face, freezing the hapless Renegade leader in a block of ice.

After the villains have withdrawn, taking their frozen leader back to Thruster, the thawed-out Leader-1 and Turbo join Scooter aboard the repaired Command Center to bring Frost and Sidney back to face justice. Nick and A.J., on the other hand, decide to take the scenic route back home aboard Dive-Dive, who is happy to take the chance to enjoy Earth's oceans a little longer.

Featured characters[edit]

(Numbers indicate order of appearance.)

Quotes[edit]

ColdSpell a gobotic rodeo.jpg
ColdSpell frost arrested.jpg

"Well, then I guess it's time to go!"
"Hey, that's my line!"

Dive-Dive steals Turbo's catchphrase



"That was more fun than a GoBotic ro-day-o!"

Cy-Kill's exactly the sort of guy who'd pronounce "rodeo" that way



"If the world had not laughed at my brilliance, none of this would have happened!"
"Well, I'm sure that argument will have the jury weeping."

Professor Frost and Nick Burns



"Oh, my poor Climatizer..."
"Look on the bright side, professor—think how pleasant a nice warm jail cell will feel!"

Professor Frost and Matt Hunter

Notes[edit]

ColdSpell divedive in action.jpg
ColdSpell ionized dome.jpg
ColdSpell guardian tornado.jpg
ColdSpell cykill frozen.jpg

Continuity notes[edit]

  • "Cold Spell" features the debut of Dive-Dive in both broadcast and chronological story orders. Screw Head notes that Dive-Dive "hasn't seen action in decades," which definitely means this episode is supposed to occur before his other big showing in the series, "Depth Charge."
  • Gadgets and Powers:
    • Dive-Dive has subsurface-to-air blasters while in submarine mode, standing in for the ballistic missile launcher a real submarine would have. He also has front-mounted blasters where a real submarine would have torpedo tubes.

Real-world references[edit]

Continuity and plotting errors[edit]

  • Cy-Kill uses the Climatizer to drop world temperatures by forty degrees. You might think that just sounds "really cold," but consider the fact that the world was only about twelve degrees colder than it is today during the last ice age, and you'll realize just how preposterously cold that actually is.
  • A shark is seen swimming past the sunken Command Center, but there are no sharks in the Antarctic.

Animation and technical errors[edit]

  • Dive-Dive has black pupils behind slightly-less-black shades. It's often difficult to tell if his pupils were animated in for anything further than a close-up shot.
  • When Dive-Dive first transforms, the conversion sound effects play early and have finished by the time he actually jumps into the air to change modes.
  • As Screw Head informs Cy-Kill that "something weird's going on," the spiral on his drill overlaps his visor.
  • The usual "UNECOM" logo/sign is missing from the background painting of UNECOM headquarters used in this episode.
  • As Professor Frost explains his device to UNECOM, Turbo's pupils are colored in like he's wearing dark shades.
  • The cross on Cop-Tur's belt has no color when Thruster first arrives at the South Pole.
  • Screw Head's chest corners are colored red when Cop-Tur takes off.
  • Just before transforming to drill into the oasis, Screw Head's mouth doesn't move when he says "Of course!"
  • When Screw Head transforms, his legs start rotating into vehicle mode position... then stop and rotate back the way they came.
  • When Leader-1 scratches his chin while pondering the Climatizer, a cel layering error causes his mouth to overlap his fingers.
  • The series makes errors surrounding the colour of the bumps/wheels on Cop-Tur's arms so regularly they're not worth pointing out, but there's a particularly noticeable one in this episode as he turns the Climatizer's knobs, and the wheels abruptly change color from blue to grey each time he completes a rotation.
  • Frost's cold weather books are uncolored white in the second shot of him trudging through the snow.
  • As the ice sheet Frost and his nephew are standing on begins to crack, the cracks extend beyond the animation cel of the ice itself, and out into the water.
  • Cy-Kill's five-o'clock-shadow is missing when he sees the Command Center approaching the Climatizer, and his teeth are white.
  • As the Command Center makes contact with the ionized dome, the airbrushed drawing of the dome and the glowing electrical effect aren't properly aligned with the background painting, making it look like the oasis extends outside the dome.
  • The gray on Scooter's chest is red when Newcastle talks about the temperate drops around the world.

Trivia[edit]

  • This episode is the third of only four episodes in the series in which Crasher does not appear. It is also the only episode in which she alone is missing from the Renegades' ranks; in the other three ("Cy-Kill's Cataclysmic Trap," "Lost on GoBotron," and "The GoBots That Time Forgot") both she and Cop-Tur are absent.
  • Though Dive-Dive is based on a full-size nuclear submarine, the animation doesn't depict him as changing in size when he transforms like a certain breed of robot from Cybertron is given to do in such situations. Consequently, though he is decorated with inappropriately-scaled down features of a nuclear submarine (like a windowed conning tower), he functions more like a "midget submarine" that can only hold a couple of humans.

Home video releases[edit]

VHS

1986 — Challenge of the GoBots — Volume VI: "Speed Is of the Essence," "Renegade Alliance," and "Cold Spell" (Children's Video Library)

DVD

2015 — Challenge of the GoBots — The Series, Volume One (Warner Archive Collection)