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Hunter searches for the missing George Newsom
Hunter searches for the missing George Newsom.

X54 Negotiations

[G-F #19: Don't Touch the Super Stuff!]

The young son of Dr. Newsom, a scientist, has disappeared. The Eagle Riders are sent to quietly investigate. Hunter pities the boy, who lives with his father in the middle of nowhere, and yet his father is so busy that he can’t be bothered to investigate his son’s disappearance. Joe observes that Dr. Newsom has always been strange. Mickey thinks the location is cool, but Kelly points out that if you have no one to enjoy it with, even a ‘cool’ location is no good.

Joe hopes that the boy, George Newsom, is okay. Mickey is ashamed for being so excited about the location.

Meanwhile, Olaf and a couple of Vorak have spotted the Ultra Eagle 5 on the horizon. They hope that the Eagle Riders aren’t onto their plan to obtain ‘the formula’. Olaf orders the androids to keep track of the Ultra Eagle’s location at all times.

The Ultra Eagle approaches Dr. Newsom’s home, and an earthquake shakes the ground as they are attempting to land. The earthquake was caused by an arriving Vorak robot which is shaped like an old-fashioned deep sea diver. Olaf orders an attack on the Ultra Eagle 5. Hunter orders Ollie to avoid the Vorak missiles being shot at them. I think Ollie had already figured that one out, Hunter. Yet it seems that Ollie is having some trouble doing this, so Hunter goes to his vehicle and engages Delta Power, ready to fight with his Phase Foil.

However, Dr. Newsom runs out of the cave in which he lives, throwing a strange boomerang at Hunter’s weapon. The boomerang knocks the Phase Foil out of Hunter’s hand, sending it tumbling to the ground. Hunter (still standing atop his vehicle) somehow manages to pilot it to the ground, and is very upset. This has never happened before and Hunter wants to find out who is responsible.

Dr. Newsom catches the boomerang and sends it at the robot. It is energized and it breaks off one of the large metal fangs on the robot. Olaf and the Vorak are amazed.

Dr. Keane contacts Hunter on his wristlink, telling him to stay where he is, because the ISO personnel are on their way. Meanwhile, Happyboy orders Olaf back to the Vorak base. The robot leaves. Hunter retrieves his Phase Foil from the ground, expecting the Vorak to return.

Happyboy orders Olaf to convince Dr. Newsom to share his ‘discovery’ with the Vorak. Olaf is doubtful he can accomplish this task. Meanwhile, the Eagle Riders have apparently returned to Gateway 2, even though Dr. Keane told them to remain in the desert at Dr. Newsom’s home. I think the Vorak are more consistent with their orders!

Avery attempts to explain why Dr. Newsom’s discovery is so important. Dr. Newsom is studying specific meteorites called ‘irons’ which are composed entirely of metal. These meteorites are very destructive if they impact a planet or a moon. Avery states that Dr. Newsom has found a way to control these meteorites, to use them to attack the Earth.

Hunter gasps, remembering the strange boomerang that knocked the Phase Foil out of his hand. He’s probably just as confused as I am as to how that boomerang relates to controlling meteorites in space. Dr. Keane fills everyone in.

Dr. Newsom has managed to capture the ‘intense power of a meteorite’. He has created objects using this high-powered energy. The team gapes in amazement, clearly realizing that this isn’t a viable explanation of any kind. Kelly weakly offers that the results could be devastating, and Joe asks if Newsom is going to turn this ‘discovery’ over to the Scorpius Force. Ollie declares that they have to prevent the Scorpius from using the formula, and Dr. Keane concurs. This is the team’s mission.

Meanwhile, Happyboy tells Olaf that the metal from Dr. Newsom’s process has a very high energy potential, which is why he wants it. This actually makes slightly more sense than Avery and Dr. Keane’s explanation. Olaf has increased in his confidence and declares that he can handle any scientist. But Happyboy changes his mind, ordering Vax to go along as well. I guess he wasn’t too confident in Olaf’s negotiation skills.

Hunter wants to know where Dr. Newsom is, and Dr. Keane points out that before they were all right at the entrance to his underground lab. Apparently he Eagle Riders are so eagle-eyed that none of them noticed. D’oh! But they return.

Now, instead of looking for George Newsom, the Eagle Riders return to seek Dr. Newsom’s formula. Another ISO team is dispatched to look for George.

Outside of the entrance to Dr. Newsom’s lab, Hunter runs into Vax. Vax mocks Hunter, telling the Eagle Rider that he is lucky that Vax is there on business. Vax invites Dr. Newsom to emerge from his lab. But the Doctor shouts at Vax and Hunter, telling them to go away. Vax protests that he is from the Scorpius Force, and like Dr. Newsom, he wields a lot of power. He demonstrates this by causing an earthquake with his robot. Dr. Newsom and Hunter are amazed. Hunter, didn’t you see this before earlier today? It should be old hat to you by now.

Olaf is piloting the robot, and attempts to hit Hunter by jabbing the robot’s fangs into the ground. Hunter doesn’t move, and Olaf misses anyway. Perhaps Happyboy made the right decision in sending Vax to negotiate. But Joe’s voice comes from out of nowhere, insulting Vax and calling him a ‘lily-livered chump’. Hunter is shocked to see the rest of the Ultra Eagle vehicles and the team standing on a nearby cliffside, ready for action. Um, Hunter, did you really think it was a good idea to come alone?

Vax declares that the Eagle Riders ‘have got us outclassed’. Ollie jokes that ‘sometimes it takes a lot of work to give peace a chance’, as he points a missile at Vax’s position. Vax growls in response. Joe suggests that everyone talk, and Olaf growls. Dr. Newsom uses his brilliance to surmise that everyone knows each other, and decides to start a bidding war for his discovery right then and there, although he claims not to want to be a ‘referee’. Then why are you starting a bidding war between obvious enemies? Despite his supposedly great discovery, it seems that Dr. Newsom isn’t too bright.

However, Dr. Newsom does something right. He declares that ‘all that hardware’ (meaning the Vorak robot and the Ultra Eagle vehicles) will have to go away first. Olaf growls some more, but reluctantly complies. Hunter tells the Eagle Riders to go, and they do. Dr. Newsom escorts Hunter and Vax to his underground lab.

There is another earthquake, and Vax and Hunter are surprised. Dr. Newsom explains that the earthquakes are just the result of the shifting caused by the Vorak robot burrowing through the ground.

On the surface, one of the Vorak androids is using binoculars to spy on the Ultra Eagle vehicles. He declares that he is looking at the entrance to the underground lab. I think I know why these androids are killed so quickly in any fight.

Meanwhile, Hunter’s wristlink begins beeping. He is transmitting to the other Eagle Riders so they can listen in on the negotiations. Vax is doing the same thing for the Scorpius Force.

Back in lab, Dr. Newsom tells Vax to present his offer first, after which he will listen to Hunter’s offer. Vax attempts to threaten Newsom, but the Doctor haughtily states that threats will only lead to his giving the formula to the ISO. Vax growls. The Scorpius really seem to love growling. Newsom returns to Hunter to ask for the ISO’s offer.

Hunter’s response is just as meaningless as Vax’s is (Perhaps there is some ‘stupid gas’ floating around Newsom’s lab?) as he brings up George’s disappearance, and states that the ISO is still looking for him. Um, this is irrelevant, Hunter.

Unfortunately for Hunter, Dr. Newsom now thinks that the ISO kidnapped his son to use as a bargaining chip. I’d think so too, after the dumb remark Hunter made. Vax laughs at Hunter’s stupidity.

Meanwhile, George is walking through the desert, upset that his father hasn’t stopped working, even though George has been hiding for six whole days. He is looking at a map to find his way home, and spies the Vorak robot. George quickly surmises that this robot caused the earthquakes, although how he knows this, I’m not sure. Perhaps all of the intelligence Hunter and Vax lost in Newsom’s lab got transferred to George?

George demonstrates that he truly is intelligent by running away from the Vorak robot.

Olaf begins ranting that Newsom isn’t going to give them the formula, and orders the Vorak to break into the lab. George is still close enough to hear this and slips away. As this is happening, Vax is telling Newsom that the Scorpius Force will use his discovery to unify the planet. Newsom wisely asks what assurance he has that the Vorak won’t use this formula to hold the planet hostage. Vax deflects that accusation, saying that it is Hunter and the ISO who are holding George hostage. Dr. Newsom keeps on track, asking Vax if the Scorpius are going to take over the Earth.

Hunter says that ‘nearly all humans’ fear the Scorpius. Then he decides to leave, basically giving up on the negotiations. Perhaps Joe might have been a better choice for this assignment.

Even as he is leaving, Hunter goes on to say that Dr. Newsom despises humans, as evidenced by the fact that he hasn’t looked for his son, even though George disappeared a week ago. Newsom counters by saying that he has no worries about his son’s ability to survive anywhere. He demands that the ISO give his son back.

Finally, Hunter actually refutes the man’s mistaken assumption. Why did it take you so long, Hunter? Hunter says that the Eagle Riders didn’t kidnap George because that wouldn’t be in the interests of the Global Good. Newsom clearly doesn’t believe him, because he tells Hunter not to harm the boy.

On the surface, Mickey needs binoculars to see that the giant robot in front of him is moving. Time for some glasses, Mickey! Joe, also staring at the robot, is apparently surprised at this news. I guess the cyborg eyes need a tune-up as well. Joe decides that the Eagle Riders should be on the move too.

Hunter tries to leave again, but Newsom demands that George be released. Hunter decides to try sarcasm (not a good move when you’ve made so many mistakes, Hunter) and says that he will have George click his heels three times to come home. Vax laughs at Hunter’s incompetence.

“I always knew those Eagle Riders were all lowlifes, but who knew how low?” Vax cackles.

Outside, the Eagle Riders are fighting the giant Vorak robot.

Hunter is just deciding that he doesn’t really want to leave (Make up your mind, Hunter!) when unexpectedly, George shows up. Newsom asks George if the Eagle Riders mistreated him, but George states that he just went camping by himself. His father was too busy to notice.

Vax tries to salvage the situation by declaring that the Eagle Riders erased George’s memory. George says that he knows what he was doing the whole time, but he was only upset that his Dad never came to look for him. Newsom counters by saying that once he sells his discovery to the highest bidder, they will have lots of fun. But George doesn’t want money.

Olaf decides to attack the lab with Vax still inside, because Newsom won’t be expecting that. Brilliant, Olaf! As the robot’s fangs crash into the lab, Vax declares that the robot has gone out of control. Vax wonders if Olaf knows about this. Meanwhile, Olaf is yelling at the Vorak androids to increase the robot’s attacks to full power. So much for loyalty.

The room is collapsing, and Newsom is bemoaning all of the years it has taken to build the lab. Vax demands that the formula be given to him, ignoring the rocks falling into the room from the ceiling. Meanwhile, Hunter makes his first smart decision of the day: he grabs George and runs from the crumbling lab. Vax finally decides that it is too dangerous and that he is getting out of there as well.

The lab is completely destroyed, and a gout of flames rushes out at Vax and Dr. Newsom, even as a rockslide traps them in. George cries out for his father.

Dr. Newsom emerges from the pile of rocks and is happily reunited with his son. But the reunion is short-lived as Newsom immediately begins re-negotiating with Vax (who somehow also escaped). Newsom asks how much money the Scorpius can offer. Hunter calls Vax ‘scum’ and protests. Newsom points out that Vax is willing to pay. Hunter says that he is acting as Newsom’s conscience. How can Newsom give away the future of the Earth… the future of his son… for money? Wow, the rockslide really smartened Hunter up! Why didn’t he say this all along?

George immediately grasps the situation. He declares that his father created the formula for the benefit of the Earth’s people, but now he wants to give it to the wrong people. He runs off again through a small crack in the rocks, as Vax and Hunter peer after him. Dr. Newsom begs George to understand, and Hunter and Vax try to get him to return as well.

For some unknown reason it suddenly occurs to all three men that George found a way out and isn’t going to return. Vax declares that he is leaving too, and rips the transmitter button from his uniform. Meanwhile, Hunter contacts Joe and asks him to keep an eye out for George. Joe says he will, but he’s a little distracted by the Vorak robot right now.

Ollie’s individual vehicle is hit, and it goes down. The robot is about to attack it when Olaf sees George running away. For some reason, Joe thinks that the robot is headed to Hunter, and drives over to pick Hunter up in his car.

Hunter and Newsom grab onto the outside of Joe’s car as another earthquake hits and rocks come tumbling down. Meanwhile, Olaf and the robot are after George as he runs through the forest. (I thought this was a desert?)

Vax is left behind in the middle of the tumbling rocks.

George races toward a tree near his father’s forest cabin, knowing that his father hid his discovery there. As she tries to catch up, Kelly’s vehicle is hit and she is grounded along with Ollie. But George reaches the tree despite the robot chasing him. He hugs the tree and talks to it as if it were a person. Clearly George has been missing social peer interaction, living in the middle of nowhere.

George presses a panel on the tree and another panel in the ground opens up, revealing a few weapons that are presumably the result of his father’s discovery. George grabs one of the rocket launchers and shoots at the massive Vorak robot.

Despite the fact that the robot is bigger than an office building, George misses. Way to go, George! He hits the mountainside, destroying a good chunk of the forest. He shoots and misses again.

Olaf is distressed, exclaiming, “That kid’s gonna hit us!” Actually, Olaf, with George’s poor aim, I think you’re perfectly safe. Although Olaf’s aim is worse. He attempts to hit the boy with a missile the size of a semi, and he misses too. George falls to the ground, the rocket launcher thrown aside.

Joe’s car arrives on the scene. On Hunter’s recommendation, Joe picks up the weapon and takes down the robot easily. A giant hole is created in the middle of the thing, and it eventually blows up. Fortunately, Hunter managed to get everyone out of there… somehow.

Of course, the formula, the weapons and the lab have now been destroyed, and Newsom declares that he has lost everything. Hunter points out that Newsom still has the most important thing: his son. Hunter knows by ‘the look in the Doctor’s eyes’ that Newsom knows Hunter is right. Newsom can no longer work and must spend time with his son. I guess being unemployed is better than being employed?

George walks up and tells his Dad that he forgives him. Of course, he doesn’t apologize for destroying the formula or the weapons, but his father hugs him anyway. Hunter gives a speech about how humans need compassion, and man cannot live by work alone. And as we all know, Hunter is a shining example of that principle, right? He is a model for the Global Good.

The Vorak's latest robot
The Vorak's latest robot.
Olaf commands the Vorak robot-of-the-week
Olaf commands the Vorak robot-of-the-week.
Hunter retrieves his Phase Foil, after Dr. Newsom knocks it out of his hand
Hunter retrieves his Phase Foil, after Dr. Newsom knocks it out of his hand.
Happyboy orders Olaf to return to base
Happyboy orders Olaf to return to base.
The Eagle Riders are confused by Dr. Keane's explanation of 'meteorite power'
The Eagle Riders are confused by Dr. Keane's explanation of 'meteorite power'.
Joe is prepared to take on the Vorak
Joe is prepared to take on the Vorak.
Ollie thinks it 'takes a lot of work to give peace a chance'
Ollie thinks it 'takes a lot of work to give peace a chance'.
The Eagle Riders listen in on the Negotiations
The Eagle Riders listen in on the Negotiations.
Hunter prepares to leave the bargaining table
Hunter prepares to leave the bargaining table.
The Vorak monitor the negotiations for Dr. Newsom's discovery
The Vorak monitor the negotiations for Dr. Newsom's discovery.
Hunter insists that the ISO has not kidnapped George
Hunter insists that the ISO has not kidnapped George.
Hunter grabs George and escapes the collapsing lab
Hunter grabs George and escapes the collapsing lab.
George tries to convince his father not to sell out to the Vorak
George tries to convince his father not to sell out to the Vorak.
Everyone wants to know where George has gone
Everyone wants to know where George has gone.
Ollie crashes while fending off the Vorak robot
Ollie crashes while fending off the Vorak robot.
Hunter asks Joe for a pickup
Hunter asks Joe for a pickup.
Kelly crashes to the ground
Kelly crashes to the ground.
Joe turns around to pick up Hunter and Dr. Newsom
Joe turns around to pick up Hunter and Dr. Newsom.
Hunter waits for his ride
Hunter waits for his ride.
Hunter runs to an unconscious George
Hunter runs to an unconscious George.
Joe assesses the Vorak robot
Joe assesses the Vorak robot.
Hunter and Joe quickly assess the situation
Hunter and Joe quickly assess the situation.
Joe takes aim with Dr. Newsom's rocket launcher
Joe takes aim with Dr. Newsom's rocket launcher.
Hunter helps George
Hunter helps George.
Joe shoots Dr. Newsom's weapon at the Vorak robot
Joe shoots Dr. Newsom's weapon at the Vorak robot.
The Vorak robot undergoes a stylistic alteration
The Vorak robot undergoes a stylistic alteration.
Hunter brings George back to his father
Hunter brings George back to his father.
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