SPOTTED: Starscream in Top Gun!

Remember that “X-E Dissects” series on the old site, where we visited fictitious locales like Fred Savage’s bedroom and the wacky store from The Facts of Life, searching for real life retail goodies?

It was one of the last things I was totally into doing on X-E, and I have every intention of continuing that series on Dino Drac.

Course, there are plenty of fun things hiding in movies and TV shows that don’t necessarily warrant a complete dissection. So let’s consider this a spinoff of that, on a smaller scale.

It even has its own banner:

Pro, right?

What this is: Sometimes, you’ll be watching a film or a show, and some random character will have some random brand name item from real life. Because familiarity is such a rockin’ thrill, whenever this happens, you flip.

“Oh my God, that guy is drinking Apple Slice. I remember Apple Slice. I drank Apple Slice!”

SPOTTED (the exclamation point is optional) pays tribute to those happy moments, whenever and wherever they’re found.

In an unexpected twist, we’re gonna start with the Starscream action figure, from the G1 Transformers line.

That’s Starscream, next to a onion. He’s missing his wings, fists and a bunch of other pieces, and he looks like dogs have been chewing him, but make no mistake, that is Starscream.

Even in their ‘80s heyday, the G1 Decepticon jets seemed more for collectors than kids, with so many of the critical parts being so easy to lose. Many of the early Transformers toys were that way, and if we’re reaching, they inadvertently taught us important life lessons about patience and responsibility.

No kid wanted to spend all afternoon crying because Starscream had no hands, or because Optimus couldn’t find Roller. If you didn’t take care of that shit, there were consequences.

I’m getting away from the point, so let me run back to it. Envision loud footsteps here.

Starscream didn’t only appear in Transformers-related things, and in photos next to onions.

He was also in Top Gun!

No, really.

Remember Goose? Tom Cruise’s co-pilot guy? The one married to Meg Ryan?

Well, to make his eventual death that much more soul-destroying, we’re treated to an early scene of Goose meeting up with his wife and son. Being a man of the skies, it’s only natural that he’d give the kid a little jet of his own.

But I guess the props department couldn’t find an appropriate toy to make this scene work, because that ain’t no regular jet. It’s a Decepticon.

This tidbit is well known among Transformers fans, but I didn’t hear about it until recently. A work project involved me picking out key scenes from Top Gun, and since I’d unbelievably never seen it before, IMDB became my Cliffs Notes. Right there in the trivia section, there it was.

“When Goose’s family arrives in San Diego, he gives his son a toy F-15 fighter jet. The toy is actually a Transformers robot named “Starscream” who is white with red trim and blue wings (As seen when you look closely at the color of the toy).”

Whoever added that was no poet, but dammit, he was right. That really was Starscream!

I can just picture director Tony Scott now.

“Hold it right there, kid. You try to turn that jet into a robot one more time, and I’ll slit your teeth. Don’t know what that means, but I swear I’ll do it. That goddamned thing better stay a goddamned plane.”

The end!

EDIT: A day after making the bad Tony Scott joke, news breaks that he committed suicide. Wow. 🙁