Robot one-upmanship is happening at an alarming pace in East Asia as the Chinese have unveiled a giant Optimus Prime in Beijing, no doubt to counter giant robots recently built by the Japanese. Is a clash of the robo-titans imminent?
The Transformers icon stands nearly 40 feet tall and weighs 6 tons. Fittingly, the head Autobot was fashioned out of recycled car parts such as engines and tires. It took five truckloads of parts to put Prime together.
The colossus dwarfs puny humans at the new Green Dream Park, located northwest of Beijing's "Bird's Nest" National Stadium used for the 2008 Olympic Games. Opening Friday, the park has environment-themed exhibits such as a super-sized reclining sofa made of recycled paper and designed to get Chinese to think green.
No doubt Prime, once junkyard detritus, fits right in. But come on, China! Do you really think you've fooled us with that one? It's clear you've continued to recklessly develop giant robot technology since we learned about your Nanjing-based project to build a full-size Transformer back in 2007.
Optimus is optimal for one thing only--countering the giant cartoon robot threat from Japan. I'm talking the giant Gundam that was built in Tokyo last year, as well as the giant Gigantor erected in Kobe. Both behemoths are a full 20 feet taller than Prime, and when Gundam returns this month in Shizuoka City he'll be armed with a beam saber. That means business.
So Chinese Optimus will need more than meets the eye to roll out victorious. The only thing that could ruin this awesome battle royale is the appearance of Shia LaBeouf.