PVT: Transformers FAQ
What is this whole thing about?
This is Phoenix Virtual Television's Transformers cartoon show continuation. It continues the classic 1980's Transformers cel-animated cartoon series, right from where it left off, and in a direction it could have gone had it not ended, but with extremely-loosened restrictions on character usage, plots, and the rest. If you're just a PVT reader who's new to Transformers, we'd advise you to get familiar with the series' previous episodes in order to understand what's going to happen now. If you're a Transfan (Transformers fan), and are here to read the next episodes, you're in luck!
What is "fanfiction?"
Fanfiction, if you're not familiar with the word, is unofficial/unpublished fictional stories based on some kind of media, usually done by fans of whatever genre it's written in.
What is Phoenix Virtual Television? What are/is Transformers?
Phoenix Virtual Television is a fanfiction group that continues cancelled TV shows with plain text documents as new "episodes." Since they aren't official continations, just text stories put up on web pages, they're just "fanfiction."
Transformers is an old 1980's cel-animated cartoon series, about a race of robots that come from another planet called Cybertron, who can transform their bodies into different things. One side is good, called the "Autobots," and the other evil, called "Decepticons." Over four million years ago, certain memebers from each faction were fighting each other in two different ships, away from Cybertron. The Decepticons boarded the Autobot ship, which then crashlanded into a volcano on prehistoric Earth in what would later be Oregan. Four million years later, in 1984, the ship was reactivated when the volcano erupted, making it reactivate the Transformers inside, and giving them transforms of Earth-type things, like cars, planes, gun, radio players, and so on. Over the course of their war in the cartoon series, from 1984-2007, many new characters would later join the cast, and the once Earth-bound Transformers would make their way back to Cybertron, and fight each other there, on Earth, and elsewhere in the galaxy. The last three episodes of the series, the ONLY episodes of season 4 (1987-88 season), took place in 2007, and introduced the Headmasters and Targetmasters Transformers, just some of the many Transformers toy releases of 1987. These three episodes were written by David Wise, were called "The Rebirth," and are listed on our "episode directory" on the main page of this site. Our episodes continue right after that, and give season 4 a more appropriate amount of total episodes (currently planned to be 30, like season 3, thus 27 extra, written by us).
Are these episodes going to be animated?
Sadly, no. PVT, our host, is just a fanfiction "television station" group that continues cancelled TV shows in plain fanfictional text, as stated previously. However, we *MAY* be able to get freelance fanfiction artists to do "still images" from our episodes, and post them on the same web page each episode is on when they come out. If *you're* an artist, and would be willing to do a number of "still images" for each of our text-only episodes (for no pay, or course), we'd appreciate it. You would be given credit for doing so, as will all people involved in our staff.
How much of the original series is canon for your continuation?
Everything from "More Than Meets the Eye, part 1" to "The Rebirth, part 3." None of the Japanese Transformers cartoon episodes, including those from the Japanese "Headmasters" series, are part of our show's continuity.
I think what you guys're trying to do here is great! I also have fanfiction writing experience, and know at least a fair amount about the Transformers TV history, and would like to write some episodes myself! Can I join your group?
Absolutely! We're always looking for new writers with fresh ideas to help keep our series going. The more, the merrier! Just e-mail me, telling me that you'd like to join, and what you'd like to offer, storywise. You should also go to our PVTransformers eGroups site and join our e-mailing list, where we chat with each other through group e-mail about our ideas, and present our episodes for critisizm from other writers and members of the e-list. I'll have to approve you for membership first, which is why it's a good idea to e-mail me as well if you want to join. A link to our Egroup site is also available on this site's main page.
When does your Transformers season 4 continuation start?
The original starting date was for late-May of this year (2000), but we weren't ready by that time. Now the current set start date of the "airing" of our episodes is September 2000, although it's looking like we may not make that either, due to how few episodes we've actually finished so far for season 4. This is why we welcome more writers to try and join our writing staff, so we have a better chance of more episodes being finished and ready by Sept. 2000, since we have to finish *all* our season 4 episodes before we can "air" them.
Are there any guidelines/rule/restrictions to episodes written for the season 4 continuation, such as on which characters a writer can or cannot use?
Not anything really restrictive. This season is considered a continuation of the 1987-1988 season (season 4), thus new toys of 1987 still have to be introduced, and appear frequently somewhat in the show continuation. The original "new-toy-introduction" policy on the show still stands in this continuation, *however* writers are no longer restricted to using *just those characters* for the season. Old characters can be brought up and used by writers if they want, as long as it makes sense (having Ironhide show up for some unknown reason wouldn't make sense since he was killed in the movie). It's still stongly recommended, but not required, that the writers try to use the 1987 toy characters (and 1988 ones in season 5 and so on), and flesh them out into more likable show characters, just as the original show's writers did with the characters from the first three seasons and the Rebirth. And as with the other guideline originally from the show about introducing a few "next season" characters early, near the end of the current season, that also still stands. For more info on writing for PVT's Transformers continuation, see the Guide to Episode Writing page of this site.
What is this "Headmasters" show business you guys mention on your site?
That's a Transformers spin-off show we want to do, that tells the tale of the warring Autobot and Decepticon factions on Nebulos. It's first intended season would take place at the same time-frame as our Transformers season 4 continuation. The characters used in "Headmasters" season 1 would be the 1987 Headmasters, Targetmasters, Terrorcons and Technobots. The show would revolve around the Autobots there trying to reestablish the Nebulan people's freedom and living, and ridding the planet of all things involved with the Hive and the Hive itself, including their Decepticon partners also stationed on the planet with them. The rest of the Transformers, especially those on Earth and Cybertron, would, thus, be appearing in our Transformers season 4 continuation. This doesn't mean that characters from one show couldn't crossover and "guest star" in the other, just as long as it was explained that they were.
As for this ever being a part of PVT's "programming," it all depends on how well our season 4 of Transformers is received. If it gets a lot of e-mail and good response from the fans, PVT will agree to the Headmasters spin-off, and possibly more spin-offs down the road.
So how can I support your continuation of the Transformers show to see that it continuously gets renewed? And who do I e-mail my comments on the show to?
Easy. Just read our episodes when we finally start posting (or "airing," if you will) them on our site on the main page this fall, and e-mail us, telling us what you thought about them, if you liked them, what you liked or didn't like, suggestions for future episodes, whatever. Also e-mail PVT itself, and tell them how you feel about our work. If all goes well, you could very well see us coming back in PVT's next season (after the new one coming September 2000).
I can't view your "Transformers Virtual Season 4 intro"!
It's a zip file, a file that's like a "package" for other computer files. This one contains the actual .AVI movie file of the intro inside. To open it, you should download the beta version of the WinZip program from WinZip web site.
I saw your "Transformers Virtual Season 4 intro"! What is it, exactly? How did you make it, and why? Will there be more? Are they finished too?
It's a "movie file," meaning it's a playable computer file containing both *video* and *audio*. It's also the 30 second intro to the post-Rebirth season 4 episodes we're working on for PVT, which, if this were an actual show, would play at the beginning, right before the episode itself would start, like the intro to any TV show, which can range from 30 to 90 seconds. The Transformers cartoon show intros were always 30 seconds, though.
Rockman666 created the intro with a movie file creattion program (with some helpful suggestions for clips from me), by taking scenes from 1987 Transformers toy commercial "cartoon shorts" (which were originally used in the commercials to spice them up to sell the toys), and other 1987 Transformer toy character cartoon clips, and compiled them together to make a "would be" intro. The actual season 4 episodes, the Rebirth 3-parter, had a different intro, much like the first five episodes of season 3 (Five Faces of Darkness) had it's own intro, different from the one to the remaining Transformers season 3 episodes.
Got any more questions in mind needing answering that we haven't covered here? Then e-mail me and tell me, so I can answer them for you and list them here for everyone else!