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They call those Pit Girls? They haven't once gone near the builders' arms!


Okay, I will admit that it's nice that the season isn't already over at this point. But that doesn't keep me from noticing that by this time (five TV hours) last season, "BattleBots" had shown one more fight than we've seen this season. By the end of this episode, the difference will go up to two.

Circuit City claims that the reason they're here is because of me. Gee, now I feel kind of guilty that I haven't even been in one of their stores for a year.

Here comes a fight between S.O.B. and T-Wrex. S.O.B. is the same as it was a few weeks ago (except they probably repaired the damage from their previous fight). T-Wrex is now painted black. As always, prohibiting the production of bright titanium sparks angers me. That's reason enough for me to root for S.O.B. in this fight.

Fightin' time. Both robots drive to the center of the Box and kind of move around. T-Wrex spins in place. S.O.B. spins in place. S.O.B. plays with its weapon. T-Wrex hits the corner of S.O.B.

S.O.B. drives away, behind some of the saws. T-Wrex drives over to S.O.B. S.O.B. charges to capture T-Wrex in the "dustpan." T-Wrex makes an offensive spin and gets the arm caught on S.O.B.'s body, raising T-Wrex's wheels off the ground. As S.O.B. shoves T-Wrex toward a wall, the saw comes down, producing lots and lots of bright sparks! Yay! So now, in addition to perceived damage from sparks, there will be saw marks in the black paint.

S.O.B. pushes T-Wrex into the wall, then considers taking it to the sledgehammer only a few feet away. But T-Wrex escapes.

S.O.B. moves to the center of the Box. T-Wrex follows, driving back into S.O.B.'s dustpan. S.O.B. is happy to lower the saw again, making sparks on T-Wrex's spikes. T-Wrex escapes before S.O.B. can put it back against the wall.

Both robots do some driving around. S.O.B. sits and watches T-Wrex. Then both robots decide to take some damage from the same set of saws. T-Wrex backs off the saws, which then toss S.O.B. S.O.B. nearly lands on T-Wrex.

T-Wrex gets a thwack on S.O.B. S.O.B. backs up and gets tossed by the saws again. This time, it does land on T-Wrex.

T-Wrex takes advantage and shoves S.O.B. into the wall. As S.O.B. falls back to the ground, its saw gets a few sparks off of T-Wrex.

They've been showing us a few shots of the blue driving platform. That's because Brent Regan has just taken over control of T-Wrex mid-fight. Using the tiniest transmitter I have ever seen. He must have to be careful not to drop that thing down any sewer grates. Or accidentally swallow it.

S.O.B. scoops up T-Wrex again. T-Wrex bounces back and forth, trying to escape, but only gets scratched up by the saw. S.O.B. pushes T-Wrex up against the spike strip. T-Wrex's thwacking bar is resting on the Lexan behind the strip. Neither bot moves.

S.O.B. backs away, leaving T-Wrex on the spike strip. T-Wrex's wheels aren't touching the ground.

S.O.B. immediately performs the victory spin, letting us know that T-Wrex is going to be staying right there for the rest of the fight. It then realizes that it's tempting fate by spinning near the saws, so it goes back to its square.

T-Wrex futilely spins its wheels. Then it's counted out.

Post-fight interviews. Tony Rock uses as many abbreviations as he can think of. T-Wrex's Hamid Wasti shuts Arj up when, in response to his stock question of "Rewired or retired?", he points out that neither is correct.

Before the commercial, it's a fake movie trailer starring Evil Cheese Wedge. This time, it's driving around the streets of San Francisco while chasing a convertible. I'll admit that I did crack a smile at the title of "RoboBot." Then I cracked my knuckles. Then I cracked open a beer.

More middleweights in this fight. T-Minus vs. Double Agent. Once again, Double Agent has radically changed its design while still consisting of two wedges. Now it's a big doorstop-shaped body with a hinged plate on the back. If BattleBots was off-road, the plate could double as a big mud flap.

In the introductions, Mark Beiro reads about Double Agent's "six razor-sharp titanium spikes." Too bad the robot hasn't had six spikes since season three.

Green light. The two robots tangle in the middle of the Box. Both are trying to get under the other, but neither is succeeding. Double Agent spins in place -- to swat T-Minus away, I guess.

Double Agent drives into the front of T-Minus. Turns out that T-Minus' flipping arm is lower than Double Agent's wedge. T-Minus wastes no time in giving Double Agent some air. Double Agent twists through the air and lands right side up.

T-Minus lowers its arm. Double Agent gets on top of the arm. So T-Minus lifts again, knocking Double Agent away, but not flipping it.

Double Agent drives away and starts spinning in place again. T-Minus follows. Double Agent turns around as T-Minus drives into it. Another lift, but no flip.

Double Agent tries to wedge under T-Minus, but slips out. T-Minus drives onto Double Agent, but slips off.

Double Agent drives onto T-Minus' lifting arm again. More air for Double Agent. It's still right side up.

Double Agent drives onto T-Minus' lifting arm (I don't think you can get under T-Minus from the front, Double Agent). Now Double Agent is upside-down.

Double Agent has its flap lifted by a saw. T-Minus misses on a flip.

Double Agent drives away, then goes back to spinning in place. T-Minus tries to flip, but misses again.

Double Agent drives over to some saws, so Pete scratches away. T-Minus comes over and flips Double Agent right side up when the saws are done.

Again, T-Minus gets underneath Double Agent's wedge. A lift, but not a full flip.

Double Agent drives into the front of T-Minus and starts to push it backward. But since it's once again on top of T-Minus' lifting arm, T-Minus simply flips it onto its back again.

Double Agent takes some more saw damage. T-Minus follows suit.

T-Minus gets well under the rear flap of Double Agent, but doesn't flip. It backs off, gets under the side of Double Agent, and lifts it. Double Agent balances on its front corner, then lands back on top of T-Minus. T-Minus raises the arm again, then runs off.

Double Agent yet again attacks the front of T-Minus. T-Minus yet again raises the arm. T-Minus is running a little low on carbon dioxide, though, since Double Agent doesn't go completely over. Maybe Double Agent is trying to get T-Minus to run out of fuel for its weapon or something.

Double Agent does a little more spinning. T-Minus gets under the side and shoves Double Agent across the Box, into the wall in front of the judges (didn't it do that during the TriDent fight, too?).

Double Agent escapes. T-Minus flips air. As the arm comes down, Double Agent gets under it for the first time in this fight. T-Minus gets off.

Over to the other side of the Box. Double Agent gets under T-Minus' side and pushes it toward the opposite wall. T-Minus slides off and Double Agent slams itself into the wall.

Double Agent drives itself into the wall a few more times. Then it drives itself under a sledgehammer. Then into a screw. Then it decides to go back to the middle of the Box.

Double Agent is briefly under one of T-Minus' tires. T-Minus then gets under Double Agent, lifting it a bit.

Double Agent drives onto T-Minus' arm. T-Minus lifts. How many times have I typed that?

Time is up. A shot of some cheering people. In the audience are the body of Crash Test Dummy and the disembodied head of Crash Test Junior. That's nice -- most of the robots have to be tied up in the pits and never get a chance to watch the others fight.

T-Minus is the winner, of course, 31-14. Tim mocks Bil's physical appearance. Bil, the stand-up comic, is acting as straight man to a football player.

Commercials for things that you probably don't care about.

And now, one of the rare combat robot-related segments that's interesting to watch. Since OverKill faced something like 80 horizontal spinners last season, its main blade and back-up blade got utterly mangled. So we get to see how the new blades were created. First the weight-saving holes are cut out of a sheet of steel with a really strong jet of water -- even stronger than a Super Soaker. After the blades are shaped, they're heated red-hot, then dunked in water to harden the steel. Then the blades towel off, get all shiny, and head to their high-powered business meeting. Which in this case involves slamming into enemy robots.

Usually, the BattleRat team has a large rat-costumed mascot by its side during fights. But this time, the mascot isn't there. I don't know why I'm pointing this out, but the show spent a good 20 seconds telling us about it, so I figured it must be important in some way.

So here we go. BattleRat versus OverKill. OverKill's new blade is curvier, with a fancier design. It also provides a nice mirror reflection of the TV camera that's shooting it.

Like it or not, it's robot fightin' time. BattleRat heads toward OverKill and drives up its wedge. OverKill smacks BattleRat with the blade. BattleRat backs off, then tries again. OverKill smacks BattleRat's lifting arm. Then OverKill drives up and over the wedged body of BattleRat.

OverKill wedges under BattleRat's arm, lifting it. BattleRat heads backward, and OverKill stays on it. BattleRat gets away, raises its arm, and pushes OverKill toward a wall. OverKill escapes.

BattleRat puts its arm back on the floor and drives toward OverKill. OverKill simply drives over BattleRat again. BattleRat then moves its lifting device so it raises the robot's body off the floor. Then the arm continues to move, about to flip BattleRat onto its head.

But BattleRat has been doing this directly over some saws. The saws pop up and hit the lifting arm hard, knocking BattleRat away and putting a big dent in the arm. BattleRat lands on its wheels.

OverKill and BattleRat drive around. BattleRat drives over the same set of saws. OverKill wedges under BattleRat's body and pushes it across the floor, toward a sledgehammer. The hammer lands squarely on BattleRat's body.

BattleRat rotates the arm, flipping the body around and somehow escaping. Both robots go back to driving.

An extended shot of Eric Moses means I don't have to transcribe what the robots are doing right now.

OverKill is hanging out on the entrance ramp. BattleRat heads over to that general area. OverKill drives over BattleRat, then goes back to playing on the ramp.

OverKill comes out and briefly wedges under BattleRat. Then it nearly gets hit by a hammer. Then it goes back to the safety of the entrance ramp.

Both robots have trouble coming into useful contact with each other. Bil and Tim continue to chat.

OverKill gets under the front of BattleRat, but BattleRat bounces away. BattleRat pushes OverKill over some saws.

Then OverKill gets a firm hold underneath BattleRat and pushes it directly under one of the sledgehammers. The hammer hits BattleRat's big body. BattleRat again turns the arm to try to escape. What it does, though, is flip its body on top of the hammer while the hammer is on the ground.

So right now, BattleRat is pinning the sledgehammer. Neither is able to move. OverKill backs off to assess the situation. It then goes back over to BattleRat and starts whacking it with the blade.

BattleRat rotates its arm and gets its body off the hammer. The hammer rises back up. Unfortunately, BattleRat's arm is still looped over the hammer, so now it's entangled. The hammer hits BattleRat's body. BattleRat flips the arm over, allowing the hammer a full range of motion again.

BattleRat backs away from the hammer. It then starts going all crazy with the arm. It's spinning all around, lifting BattleRat's body off the ground, flipping it over... that can't be good for the robot, but it's fun to watch. OverKill smacks BattleRat's body with its blade, but really, BattleRat is harming itself enough right now.

BattleRat does a somersault. OverKill continues to take shots with the blade. It pushes BattleRat against the wall. Time runs out, so OverKill does the victory spin.

Replays. Carmen informs us that BattleRat's arm was acting all goofy because of a glitch in the radio controlling it. Useful information coming from Carmen? Man, if that keeps up, I'm going to have to start listening to her.

OverKill's victory comes in the form of a 35-10 score. Post-fight stuff after the commercials.

Post-fight stuff includes the Hit of the Week, the Pit Girls brushing Christian Carlberg's hair, and a post-fight interview containing the word "rattitude." Then the recaps, a plug for "The Official Guide to BattleBots" from Bil, and the show ends. I never put much work into the fourth segment, do I?

Wait a minute... "The Official Guide to BattleBots" is a paperback by Scholastic books! Amazon.com says it's for ages 9-12! Oh, wait... I think Bil meant "BattleBots: The Official Guide," which is targeted toward adults. Or maybe he meant "The Official Bot to Battle Guides," I don't know.

Anyway, the point is, there are a lot of books about BattleBots and combat robotics in general. I actually tried to get one of my own published, but even though I proposed such useful chapters as "Bots That Suck: Never Build Anything That Resembles These" and "Tools: Let's Make Some Guesses As To What They Could Be Used For," I was turned down. Back to the drawing board. You know, I'll bet I could write something up for the tabloids. All I need is Photoshop and a picture of Rammstein...


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