The Intruder: Daily coverage and speculation

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The Return

Day 68 - 11.24.00

The final episode had no title like the last two. The first thing I saw was the space station Starpower from far away (by that I mean no other ships in dock were noticable). The "garages" that the other ships from earlier were using are gone (probably retracted when not in use) except one. The scene shifted from there to the now repaired Absolution.

The Absolution itself has no changes other than the new engines and some blue highlights (blue lights aimed at the hull). The scene then went over to TOM who was at the communications room (you'd think the room he was in at the start of this thing handled things like this). I don't know what TOM said then but I do know he was enthusiastic to try out the engines. One of the monitors with a Starpower staff worker told TOM that he and the Absolution were ready to go. TOM confirmed this and the Absolution left the station and he and Sara were on their way to new adventures.

...But as the camera panned up and away from the Absolution, a tiny Intruder flew across the screen and the words The End? flashed on screen. That's the conclusion of The Intruder, but there's the epilogue to cover as well.

This happened right before Toonami showed "The World's Strongest". Tom was in the comm. room again (How come TOM and Sara didn't get a crew for this ship like engineers or a comm. droid to relay this to him?) and he was talking to Sara about using the new hyper drive system (I guess that Intruder won't be following them anytime soon) Sara began a countdown as the engines began to power up. Right before the drive kicked in, some transparent pipes filled with a sky blue colored energy (a restraint that kept TOM from flying off his feet due to the force of the ship's accelration no doubt). The new drive kicked in and the Absolution took of in Star Trek : TNG fashion to new places (probably back to the Ghost Planet to report this to Space Ghost or who ever's in charge) Sara announced that the in flight movie was starting and The World's Strongest started playing.

--Submitted by Tom Lund  


Wanna play chicken?!?


That's not the engine I voted for! The ballots were misleading! I want a recount!


DON'T TOUCH IT! It's the History Eraser Button, you fool!


...must they torture us like this?

Ensign Crusher!
Huh? Who's Ensign Crusher?
Um... Never mind. Lieutenant Sara!
..TOM? What are you doing?
Just play along. Lieutenant Sara! Warp 7! Engage!

I'm a computer, TOM. I'm not a Lieutenant. Are you feeling OK?
C'mon Sara, just play along!
I have no idea what you're doing! How am I supposed to play along?!?
[sigh]...You're no fun. Just prep the new engines for Hyperdrive.
Good. Now you're making sense.

The Absolution is repaired and is more powerful than ever before.
It's a new beginning, and an exciting one at that.


Day 50 - 11.6.00

Episode 7
Well, that was unexpected. Out of nowhere, Williams Street shows another episode of The Intruder. The Absolution has finally made it to the starbase StarPower. (Very cool looking starbase I might add...)

The Parts n' Service guy tried to get TOM to buy a Harper GT88 instead of the Talon ST (He must get better profit margins with the Harpers). But, of course, TOM doesn't take crap from anybody and the Parts n' Service guy backed down. The StarPower's maintenance ships are now repairing the Absolution and installing the new engines. The bird will soon fly again.


Will there be any hidden charges? Will the new engines be faulty and burst into flames? More importantly, where's Sara? Find out on the next episode of The Intruder!


Here's the Starbase StarPower. Big enough to hold quite a few Absolutions.


Docked for repairs. That's a mighty big garage.


The Aftermath

The Intruder has come and gone. The Intruder web site is offline. I've played all the games, looked at all the data files, and even read through the entire Official Contest Rules section. Now I can look at the entire mini series as a whole.

Episodes - I think most of us were hoping for a half-hour episode mini-series when we heard about The Intruder. What we got was a 3 minute or so episode every day. Even so, they episodes were full of eye candy and very fun to watch. And I don't think ANYBODY expected TOM to die or part of the Absolution be sacrificed. I'm looking forward to seeing more of TOM2 and Sara.

For a few weeks before the premiere, visitors to the Toonami.com site were greeted with a pop-up ad for The Intruder. The section as of then wasn't much. Just a reminder to download QuickTime 4 and Flash. Once Monday, September 18th came along, the Intruder section came alive with comics and games.

Comics - The Flash comic idea is a good one, but I personally didn't really like the stories. I was hoping for a tie-in to the origins of Toonami. Although I had trouble reading the text bubbles as fast as they flew by, each comic was fun to watch.

Games - After every episode of The Intruder, a password was given that could be used to unlock a Flash game. You usually had to lead the "Clyde50-B" robot around and in the Absolution saving Clydes from the Intruder. Maybe it was just because I was in a hurry or not paying attention or something, but I had an incredibly hard time winning the later games. That damn Intruder blob kept eating my Clydes! AAAAAH!
Anyway, all of the games were pretty much the same. You always controlled Clyde50-B, and you always had to save Clydes and escape the Intruder or finish before time was up. I was hoping for a little more variation in the games.

Online Episodes - Toonami.com finally started using Sorenson to compress their videos. The broadband streaming version of the episodes looked BEAUTIFUL. Master video copies compress wonderfully.

The Intruder was the biggest event on Toonami ever. The amount of planning and work that went into it really paid off. This was Cartoon Network's first big test of interactive television, and I believe it went off flawlessly. I'm looking forward to more Toonami shorts from the Williams Street crew.

We're sorry, but the phone lines are now closed. Thanks for calling Toonami.
If any of you called the Absolution Afterburn sweepstakes number (and got through), you noticed that somebody tried to imitate the voice of TOM...with disastrous results.
Here's a recording I made of the phone call...


Day 5 - 9.22.00

Episode 5
Finally...Episode 5 of the Intruder. We saw the birth of TOM 2 and the crippling of the Ghost Planet Space Ship Absolution.

Luckilly, it seems that TOM 1's being, his memory and his soul, his "matrix" were uploaded into the new unit prior to its activiation. It was strange that both Sara and TOM didn't think of any of this as very major.

Sara told TOM that he had to set explosive charges to the starboard side of the Absolution. There was no way to completely save the ship from destruction. Only through death can there be rebirth.

Episode 6
The Intrduer has exactly what it wanted - a part of the Absolution. Unfortunately for it, that's all it'll get as it floats endlessly through space.

This leaves TOM and Sara with a problem...One of their engines is gone. The nearest Starbase is a month away in their condition. When they get there, they'll need a new engine system to traverse the cosmos (big words are fun). So, like a married couple, they have to argue about their new engine choices.

That's where we come in. On Monday, we will be given a number to call where we will help decide the new look of the Absolution. Five of those people will win a trip to to Japan.

A warning to those of you decide to do this: I want to go to Japan. If you call, thereby adding your name to the list of people eligible to win, I will be forced to hurt you. Only after I (and Nemalki too. He wants to go just as much as me.) have won will three other people be allowed to call. Heed my words...
Well, call if you want. I'll just be very sad...[snif]...


We are the TOM. Resistance is futile.


Hey! Watch me flex my new muscles!


Starboard engine, we hardly knew ye.
Intruder, good riddance.


Your call is important to us. Please stay on the line...


Uh...Yeah, we can get you that part, but you're going to need a new flux capacitor, warp core, power disribution matrix, 3D model...


Aw, man...and I just got it detailed too!

Hmm... I wonder if we could supercharge one of these...we could REALLY fly!
TOM, this isn't hot rod.
But hey, if Turner's willing to spend the money...
[sigh]...Men...

The Intruder is gone, and the Absolution will be getting another facelift. Things are always getting better on Toonami, and there's no end in sight. This is a new beginning...


Day Four - 9.21.00

Wow. TOM went to try and defeat the Intruder today. At least he got a more advanced version of his Kiefer B-9 to aid in his quest to lay the smack down.

This episode is the best yet. TOM finally faced off against The Intruder.
...But the end of this episode has left us with a lot of questions.

How are we going to "affect the outcome" like all the promos said we would? I think we would have been told by now... And what's with TOM2 and the destruction of the left side of the ship as shown in the promo for tomorrow? Big changes are in the making...

I WANT ANSWERS! I DON'T WANT TO WAIT UNTIL TOMORROW!
Oh, how I hate being on the outside...

Watch the conclusion of The Intruder tomorrow!


Bigger guns are always a good thing.


Never send a robot to do a...uh...robot's job.


If there's something strange in your neighborhood...


...who you gonna call?


TOM!
NNNNNNOOOOO! TOM! He can't die! He was too young... [snif]
If this is The End of the Beginning, then what comes next?
This is getting quite interesting. Tomorrow seems so far away...


Day Three - 8.20.00

When we last saw TOM, he was floating away from the Absolution unconscious and helpless. Luckily, a friendly asteroid knocked him back into operation. The Clydes made themselves useful by getting TOM another jetpack from the Jetpack Arsenal. It looks like the Intruder is growing and is taking over the ship deck by deck. It's like a cross between Star Trek and The Blob.

Sara made fun of TOM. That was funny. This paragraph is getting me nowhere.

THAT's better. Toonami has started putting the episodes of The Intruder online. They're saving us some extra work. And I'd like to applaud them on reaching the QuickTime 4 age with their very nice looking streaming movies. It's nice to see master video clips from Toonami online. Now if only they used that for the rest of their site...

Will TOM and the Absolution survive, or will the be swallowed up by the mysterious Intruder? Find out on the next episode of Dragon Ba--uh...The Intruder!


Go to the light TOM...Go to the light...


A cracked skull is enough to give anybody a headache.


Have any of you noticed the Japanese characters on the redesigned Absolution?


Warning: Clyde50s are not a suitable source of food.


Wow. That's a DEEP hole. You could probably have a light saber duel near it...


Day Two - 8.19.00

Today's episode of the Intruder left me a little disappointed. Running a little less than two minutes, it left a LOT to be desired. I was hoping for The Intruder to be a 30 minute show everyday, but I guess we'll all have to live with the 2-3 minute episodes. Also, I would give a review on the during-show Shockwave stuff, but my computer is WAY too slow to handle it. (It ain't fun, especially when you have to try to make video clips and mess with graphics.) BUT, I did get a chance to look at the comic and the game yesterday. The game wasn't all that hard. I got all the Clyde50s and back to the ship in no time. It would have been nice if the game had a high score list. I would like to have my name and website address posted on the official Toonami site ^_^
...and I was hoping that Moltar was responsible for the creation of TOM and the Absolution. Oh well...


I'm sorry, but TOM just isn't Michael Johnson


...or Babe Ruth


...or James Bond


...or Karate Kid


AAH! My eye!


So THAT's where they keep all the DBZ tapes...


So, I guess that the red blob is the Intruder...or is it controlled by another being?

Oh, no! TOM! The red blob hit him out of the Absolution and into the cold vacuum of space! And his reactor core isn't functioning! TOM's power is out! And is that a reflection of the Absolution, or is there a hole in his visual sensor?!?

Could it be that our host of Toonami for over a year is DEAD?!?

Find out tomorrow on Episode 3 of The Intruder!


Day One - 8.18.00

Toonami starts, and there's no escape from Intruder promos. During ReBoot and Sailor Moon, at the beginning and end of every show, and in every commercial break, you'd find at least one advertisement of the Intruder. You can really tell that Cartoon Network's going all out. I was a good little Toonami fan and did what the TV said. I went to the Toonami.com Intruder page. Cartoon Network Akamized their site in anticipation of the load (for those of you who don't know, Akamai is a company that distributes its client's data across hundreds of servers worldwide, so you can always download from the server nearest your house.) I had my computer up and my web browser window open to the Intruder page ready for the show to begin. At about 5pm Eastern time, it began...
The computer alerted TOM to the Intruder. She locked down the area near the intruder to keep it from moving around the ship. TOM made his way to the docking bay to get his jetpack so he could get a better look at the damage done. He flew all the way around the front of the Absolution to get oohs and ahhs from the viewers (He could have just flew over the top of the ship or around the back, but the long way looked cooler.)
TOM covered the hull breach with a metal plate he pulled out of thin air--er...space and made his way into the ship to find The Intruder...


Oh, those 9 minutes were like an eternity...


TOM can watch quite a few TV channels at once.


Check out the Absolution's new data screens


So I guess this ISN'T the Intruder, but TOM's computer. At least he's not alone while flying through space.
 


This a Clyde50. I don't see the family resemblance...


I don't think that TOM needs all those jetpacks. He should send me one.


If you're too lazy to strap on a jetpack yourself, you shouldn't complain when somebody else does it.


...I don't think he needs that big of a Docking bay either


TOM's got a lot of neat stuff lying around.

The red glowy thing. The only clue we have as to the Intruder's identity. Is it a melted piece of the inside of the Absolution? If so, who do we all know who has the power to make things really hot...

MOLTAR!

But that's just my opinion. And my hopes. It would be really cool to see Moltar come back, but I don't think it'll happen.


Pre-show Babbling - 9.17.00

 

There's an ad at the bottom of the Toonami.com site for the WB Store. If you go to the WB store and buy any Sailor Moon, Gundam Wing, Dragon Ball Z or Batman item and say "Follow the Intruder", you would get a free Toonami fingerboard. For those of you unaware of the term, a fingerboard is a mini-skateboard. You skate using your fingers as "feet" and do funky tricks with it. It's all the rage with grade schoolers at lunch time.
On the Saturday before the premiere of The Intruder, my brother and I went down to the local ridiculously large mall to get some DBZ stuff and our fingerboards. Right at the entrance of the WB store there was a poster advertising the promotion (actually, it advertised getting an iron-on Toonami shirt decal thingy which was nowhere in site.) As I entered the store, I mocked the over abundance of Goku and Piccolo costumes and moved on to the clothing section. There was ONE Dragon Ball Z shirt in the entire friggin' store. If you think THAT's bad, there was NO Sailor Moon or Gundam Wing merchandise at all. Batman had its own section, of course. Moving to the toy area, there was an entire island of DBZ toys. None of the new series 16+ action figures, but there were quite a few Frieza and Goku walkie-talkies still available along with legions of Buu mini-action figure sets. I looked at the price, $5.50, and quickly walked away. I found a DBZ puzzle for three dollars, but decided against it (I outgrew 75 piece puzzles years ago. I don't even have the attention span for it anymore.)
With no decent non-Batman (actually, there was no decent Batman stuff there that I would want either) Toonami merchandise in sight, my brother grabbed a DBZ sticker set and paid for it. The conversation for the fingerboard went as follows...

Brother: "Hey, do you have any of those Toonami fingerboards?"
Cashier: "Um...?"
Brother: "...The mini-skateboards from Toonami."
Cashier: "Oh yeah. [to other cashier] Katie, do we have those Toonami fingerboards?"
Other cashier: "...Wha?"
Cashier: "...The mini-skateboards from Toonami."
Other cashier: "Um...?"
[They both check the drawers by the cash registers, and find it].
Cashier: "Ok. here ya go."
(My brother realized that saying "Following the Intruder" would only add to the confusion. He's quite smart.)

With our mission completed, we left for home. The fingerboard wasn't from the undisputed leader in fingerboards, but another company with lower quality. Instead of real skateboard grip and customizable wheels, it was cheap clear plastic with a piece of printed paper inside. The trip was an overall disappointment.

Screenshots


Mr Data! Red alert! Zentraedi battle pods are entering the hull breach on our left warp nacelle! Worf, you lead a security team.


So, THIS is the Intruder...
Hey... He looks nothing like Moltar! I'm curious as to this guy's makeup. Is he gas? Really clear plastic? Ones and Zeros on a computer in Georgia?


Look! Up in the sky! Is it Clyde49? Is it the Absolution? No, it's SuperTOM!


I want one! I want a zappy gun!


That's a MIGHTY big ship for such a little robot...


If you couldn't tell by the motion blur, TOM's flying away from the Absolution without a tether. Uh oh...

Don't forget to watch Toonami from September 18-22 and go to Toonami.com to help choose the ending of the mini-series!

More to come...
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