Lazy Luddite Log

2.8.20

Titans Of Titan - The Telemovies

What follows is fiction and much of it is a fiction within a fiction. It expands on what was described here...

Three Titans of Titan telemovies were made which blended live-action human actors, stop-motion robot models, different sets scaled for both humans and robots, and tilt-shift photography rather than standard stock footage. Much of the work was done using Swiss facilities and staff. These were the first Grand Fenwick Radio And Television productions aimed specifically at tween and teen audiences and were more popular than the toys they promoted. The first even got public screenings at the Grand Fenwick Theatre as Titans Of Titan The Movie.

That first movie drew the ire of Grand Fenwick’s sole morality campaigner, Marika Weisshauser, who objected to both its action violence and some very skimpy clothes that featured in its nightclub scene. Weisshauser had a lobbying method that was as unusual as it was effective. She would visit the Grey Goose Pub frequented by Fenwickian parliamentarians and sing her favourite arias until they gave her what she wanted. The Duchess Gloriana XIII and her Ducal Minister for Trinkets ‘Professor’ Dom Woodlock quickly mollified Weisshauser (even if they wished they could immolate her). In the two Titans Of Titan sequels nobody was destroyed and everyone was modestly-dressed.



Only the first movie was released for home consumption. Some fans suspect that the other two have been erased but Grand Fenwick Radio And Television have never confirmed this. They could have been lost, along with many other records, in the Fenwick Fondue Incident of 1990. Scripts and still images did survive however, partly thanks to the Titans Of Titan role-play game. Story descriptions of the three telemovies follow.
 More information on the alien robot characters can be seen here.

Saturn From Titan

Titans of Titan (1986)


In the year 2000 a staffed expedition to the Saturnian moon of Titan discovers something startling inside its icy surface. Two very large and geometrically shaped objects are detected. Some speculate that they are two portions of a crashed spacecraft while others say that they may in fact be two separate crafts.

Excavation finds two much smaller objects closer to the surface. They seem to be large statues. The closest is successfully removed from the ice and transported to Earth for further study at the Alpine Institute of Human Advancement (establishing shots for this and other urban settings imply that they are set on Lake Geneva). Due to its long incarceration in ice the relic is named Kronos for the ancient Titan of longevity.

Next the survey crew work on freeing the other ‘statue’ from the ice and notice its vibrant red livery. This prompts the explorers to name it Prometheus for the ancient Titan who gifted humanity with fire. They are disrupted by a sudden attack from a flying saucer. All the crew present are killed off-screen while automatic cameras film the attacker altering form into another ‘statue’ and proceeding to dig its way to one of the entombed structures. This robot dubbed Charon had been hibernating in the rings of Saturn but was awakened by a passive homing signal transmitted by Kronos.

The two huge ice-encased structures are the spaceships of the rival Kronotons and Probots. Charon makes his way into the Kronoton ship and starts the process of re-activating its crew. Soon he has revived the espionage specialists and also gets the teleportation chamber operating. A ship with the power to cross interstellar space also has the power to teleport crew members within interplanetary distances but takes time to recharge and has a limited capacity. The Kronotons who journalists will soon name Specteron, Waveform and Crookbook are sent to Earth to find their leader - none other than Kronos - while Charon continues to thaw others from hibernation.



Much closer to the surface Prometheus is revived by exposure to the atmosphere of Titan. He digs his way to the Probot spacecraft and in his turn starts reviving his followers. Soon the Probots that will be called Hornet and Ace Rider are revived and teleported to Earth on a mission to make contact with the locals and find a safe haven for the Probot crew.



In Europe, the Kronotons are teleported to a warehouse but cannot get a more accurate fix on Kronos, whose signal has ceased. They assume he still functions but that the signal has been blocked by humans who are hiding him. They study Earth media and decide to kidnap the European President and use him as leverage to free Kronos. Specteron thinks he can do this alone and so visits a Geneva television studio at which the statesman will be giving a speech. Specteron is like all Titans and can assume new camouflage (known as 'camo-modes') to fit the local environment. They can each adopt a fresh camo-mode a total of three times and Specteron takes on the form of TV cameras. However, the security service of the President is surprisingly effective and manages to get him away from the marauding alien robot, who flees in panic.

Hornet and Ace Rider teleport onto a traffic island and quickly adopt the forms of a sports car and a street bike before speeding away. However they had startled several motorists and caused a minor crash. Both a roadside mechanic and a local traffic reporter attend the scene. Andrin and Talina get hot chocolates together at a late night cafe to compare notes on the odd things several witnesses told them. Hornet and Ace Rider park at a nearby drive-in and watch a movie in the hope of understanding Earth culture. They see an advertisement which declares that “Autobahn Nightclub is the centre of the universe” and assume it is a seat of government. There is also a glimpse of what looks like Transformers The Movie, suggesting that in this setting it is fictional.

Waveform and his pet Crookbook devise a new scheme to leverage human power structures. They have discerned that the European President’s daughter, Letizia, is an avid ‘clubber’ with a far smaller security compliment than her father. The two Kronotons assume the form of a speaker stack with DJ booth and a laptop at the Autobahn Nightclub and attempt a kidnapping. However, Hornet and Ace Rider had just parked outside and come to the rescue. The Kronotons, who can fly short distances and jam surveillance, escape. The Probots make contact with Earth authorities, aided by a grateful Letizia. A frustrated Talina, accompanied by Andrin, gets there too late to witness any of the action.


Back on Titan, Charon revives Astra who then takes over operations. She loves Kronos and so is far more motivated to succeed. With Cloudwrench and Stormburst she teleports to Earth with a new and more ruthless plan. The warrior trio arrive at a British air base and destroy it once they take on new military plane forms. They fly to and terrorize an Alpine sports stadium, while a soccer game is underway, and hold all humans present hostage.

Hornet and Ace Rider send a report to Prometheus who decides to bring reinforcements himself, taking Panega and Argus with him and leaving his lieutenant Epimethius in charge of more revivals. The three newly arrived Probots assume the forms of emergency service vehicles outside the stadium, enter to take on the Kronotons and allow the humans to escape. Waveform, Crookbook and Specteron arrive, however, and outnumber the Probots. Hornet and Ace Rider try to get into the stadium but panicking crowds hamper them.



All this time Kronos has slowly been reviving and discovers he is in a secret military and scientific bunker. In his own rush to escape he uses his last camo-mode charge to assume the form of the first vehicle he encounters - an experimental tank. Had he held off even minutes longer he would have seen a hover jet and could have mimicked that, however he can still fly a short distance and follows the signals of his minions to the stadium. Around this time, Talina and Andrin also arrive, and narrowly escape their vehicles before they are destroyed by falling debris from a destroyed light tower.



Back on Titan the teleportation device is recharged and Epimetheus makes the rapid decision to bring all those currently revived with him to help on Earth. There are only two others and they set the teleport to automatic transmission, hoping it will successfully home in on the other Probots. They are separated, however. Epimethius appears on the roof of a truck stop, which collapses, and then assumes the form of a prime mover sans trailer. Phantom appears on a Formula One racing track and assumes the first form she sees. Tracker finds himself in forested hills and, coming to a road, models himself on an abandoned four-wheel drive he sees parked there.

All three Probots converge on the stadium just as the Kronotons, now lead by Kronos, destroy Penega and Argus. Prometheus and Kronos are fighting hand-to-hand while Hornet and Ace Rider are in a pitched blaster fight with the rest of the Kronotons. The Probot reinforcements get into the action and, suddenly, human military forces arrive too. Astra and Specteron are both destroyed and at this, Kronos calls a retreat.

Talina, with help from Andrin, managed to get much of the action on tape. Later, the European President and his daughter present the Probots with medals for helping save the lives of so many sports lovers, and welcome them to Earth, offering to house them in a secret Alpine bunker.


The Progenitor Kiln (1987)

These are some key scenes from the second telemovie:

- Ace Rider and newly revived Dusty are racing each other along a lakeside beach. A drunk notices these cycles have no riders and throws his booze away.


- Newly revived Atlas and Waves rescue a recreational fisher stuck in stormy conditions - he is Dr Ito from Japan who is a visiting fellow at the Alpine Institute of Human Advancement. The scientist is delighted to discover the helicopter and jet-ski are in fact the famed alien robots.

- 

Waveform and Crookbook destroy an old abandoned mansion overlooking the lake after finding evidence in it directing them to the ancient lost progenitor kiln that the Titans were aiming for when they got into a fight around Saturn.

- Ace Rider, Dusty, Waves, Atlas and Dr Ito meet at the burning structure and manage to salvage some evidence from its even older cellars. Atlas informs Dr Ito that a progenitor kiln is a device that can both generate new Titans and imbue them with the fresh ability to assume camo-modes.

- 

In a flashback depicting some long-since destroyed progenitor kilns, the dead characters Specteron, Astra, Panega and Argus are seen.

 It is shown that the installations can only be activated by two Titans working in tandem.

- In separate scenes both Prometheus and Kronos are shown giving orders to discover the progenitor kiln or prevent others from finding it.



- Newly revived Streetslick and Spanners assume camo-modes to compensate Talina and Andren for vehicles lost in the stadium battle and work with them as undercover operatives.



- The five newly revived Democrons are in work vehicle cameo-modes at a seeming construction site, but they are really excavating for the lost progenitor kiln. Streetslick, Talina, Spanners and Andren discover this.
 Groundhog, Dirtdigger, Flatchat, Forks and Doze attack the interlopers.

- Hornet, Phantom and Tracker are all transported to the firefight by Epimethius using his new trailer. They convert it into the Probot defensive stockade at some distance from the excavation in which the Democrons shelter.



- Prometheus and Kronos arrive and have a deliberate collision in camo-modes and follow it with fighting as robots.



- Atlas has a dog-fight with Charon who had lead Cloudwrench and Stormburst into battle over the impromptu battleground. The three Kronotons threaten to overwhelm the big Probot.


- The Democrons combine into the gestalt Demolizor and clash with an exoskeleton-augmented Epimetheus, who eventually gets the upper hand, and shatters their unity.

- Members of both factions attempt to take control of the progenitor kiln - Waveform and Crookbook for the Kronotons and Hornet and Ace Rider for the Probots. In struggling to do this both Hornet and Crookbook accidentally activate the device.

- However at that same moment human military jet fighters blast the progenitor kiln in a desperate effort to end the urban conflict. The explosion sends a peculiar burst of energy across the city.

- The Kronotons retreat and the Probots are left to help tidy the damaged site. Dr Ito asks if there is any way to restore the progenitor kiln but the Probots think this is a very long shot.

Portal To Andromeda (1988)


These are some key scenes from the third telemovie:

- Dr Ito has been studying Titan technology and developed his own radical new machine - a wormhole generator located in a secluded Alpine ravine. Prometheus says that the Probots could use it to return home to the Andromeda Galaxy. He even suggests negotiating with Kronos so that the Kronotons can also go home and let humans live in peace once more.

- The energy wave from the activated then destroyed projenitor kiln resulted in the random metamorphosis of some local works of artifice into Titans - some animatronic Mesozoic reptiles in the Alpine Museum and some arthropod sculptures in the nearby lakeside plaza. These have been living secretly for some time but then the two groups clash one night and suddenly all the world is aware of them.

- Atlas, Streetslick, Spanners, Dusty and Waves intervene and manage to end the clash. The arthropods escape into the sewers. The reptiles however stand firm and the Probots manage to convince them they can be friends. The new allies are named Mesobots.

- The arthropods exit at a rubbish tip but are confronted there by the Democrons. The new Titans are so awed by the combined form of Demolizor that they offer to ally with them and so become the Invertocrons.

- Both Mesobots and Invertocrons have issues integrating into the factions. They also express a desire to live in a world that belongs to them rather than one that is dominated by organics.

- In a surprise to all, Prometheus and Kronos come to an agreement to work together on perfecting the wormhole generator.

- The new Titans known as Grindstone, Whirlpool, Wingspan, Locus, Scorpio and Slator all volunteer to test the wormhole generator.

- The volunteers are gated away from Earth and the final scene shows they are indeed on another planet orbiting a distant binary star. However it is a barren world rather than the technological marvel they were expecting. The two trios glare at one another across a small space and wonder how well they can get along.

- The end credits inform viewers to "prepare yourself for the coming Cold-Blooded Clash"...

The only thing that ever came of this promise was new packaging for the few Titans Of Titan toys sold in stores in 1989. The telemovies soon became the sort of faded memory that aging Gen-X Fenwickians would half-think they had imagined rather than seen.

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