This is a spoiler! If you do not want to know how a particular episode
turns out, do not read byond this point. Once again, do not read these
episode descriptions if you do not want to know the outcome of the story.
Starship Troopers Episode Guide, Part II
by Rob Allstetter
webdate: 9/10/99 2:44:51 PM
Continuing from Tuesday's Trailer Park column, following are more
first-season episodes of the animated series Roughnecks: Starship
Roughnecks began Aug. 30 in syndication and on Sci Fi (formerly the Sci
Fi Channel). Here's a look at the second 20 episodes of the series.
Returning from a combat mission in a retrieval ship, the Zephyr, the
Roughnecks are re-routed to an asteroid to join scientists from another
ship, the Sequoia, in a quest for a bio-weapon against the bugs. Just as
they are coming in for a landing, tiny flame-breathing bugs, Firefries,
hatch from Zander's skin. The ship crashes, badly damaged, but there are
no serious injuries. Teams are sent out to locate the Sequoia. One team,
Razak and Doc, falls into a subterranean network where they are attacked
By marshmallow-like Leeches. Another team, Brutto and T'phai, find
themselves in a battle with adult, human-sized Firefries. Razak and Doc,
joined by Dizzy and Gossard from the ship, join in this battle.
Meanwhile, the third team, Carmen and Rico, is buried by an avalanche,
and beneath the snow they share some intimate moments. Dizzy saves them.
All return to the Zephyr, where Higgins awaits with the recovering
Zander. They finally realize that they're on the wrong asteroid; the
Sequoia awaits them elsewhere. The Zephyr is unflyable and its
communications system is down, so the Roughnecks are trapped with little
hope of rescue. But they discover that the asteroid contains the
bio-weapon they came to search for. The wrong asteroid has turned out to
be the right asteroid.
122 "Mixed Signals"
The Zephyr remains crash-landed on a frozen asteroid. A team is sent out
to collect Toxin B-3, a potent bio-weapon that they've found here (to
their surprise, since it was supposed to be found on another asteroid
entirely), while Gossard and others remain at the ship to try to get the
communications system working to send an SOS... and to protect the ship
from Firefries, fire-breathing bugs that the Roughnecks accidentally
brought to the asteroid as eggs. The collection team fights Leeches,
aggressive amorphous blobs, inside a cave; in the aftermath of the
battle they discover that the Leeches are the source of the Toxin B-3.
But while collecting them the team finds itself at the mercy of a
hurricane-force wind coming from inside the cave. The wind blows Carmen
away, and the team fears for her life. The episode climaxes in a
massive battle with the Firefries around the ship. When it's over,
Gossard is able to send an SOS, and Carmen returns. It looks like help
is on the way.
123 "Hot Ice"
The Roughnecks are crashed on a barren asteroid. A science vessel, the
Sequoia, comes to their rescue but it crashes too. They set out to find
it. Eventually it is discovered by Zander and Higgins, but Zander is
captured by the bugs - Firefries - who have taken it over. When the rest
of the Roughnecks get to the Sequoia, they find Zander miraculously
alive but deranged. They return to their own ship, the Zephyr, with the
Sequoia's fuel cell. The Zephyr is attacked by Firefries but, with the
new fuel cell, manages to take off. But one of the Firefries has managed
to get aboard, and it explodes, causing the Zephyr to crash again.
142 (C-2) - "Propaganda Machine"
The second "clip" show. This was to buy time since they only had
two new episodes in January.
124 "The Inside Story"
Their ship, the Zephyr, crashed again on the ice asteroid, the
Roughnecks are running out of ammo to fight off the attacking Firefries.
In order to give Gossard time to set up a poison gas perimeter around
the ship, Rico, Dizzy and T'phai lead the 'Fries on a wild goose chase.
They are trapped and seem doomed, but Zander, who's been acting
strangely since his own capture by the Firefries, appears and leads the
Fries away like a Pied Piper. The Roughnecks think Zander's dead, but he
returns to the ship -- physically okay, but even more deranged. As the
battle continues, Razak tells Rico he's been promoted to Corporal. An
earthquake on the rapidly changing asteroid sends the Zephyr careening
into a crater. After a wild ride, the ship ends up deep inside the aster
oid. With air on the ship running low, Brutto and Doc go out into the
surrounding tunnels to search for a source of oxygen. They barely make
it back to the ship, but they bring news yhat they think they've found
some oxygen. Doc has some other news: he thinks that what they're inside
is not an asteroid but some kind of living thing.
125 "The Ice Men Goeth"
The Roughnecks' ship, the Zephyr, remains trapped inside what they now
know is a giant bug. A team consisting of Rico, Brutto, Dizzy and Doc
has been sent out to retrieve air. After Rico rescues Brutto from a
fall, the two of them become separated from Dizzy and Doc85 who succeed
in tapping an air source but are swept away by one of the bug's
arteries. Back at the ship, Zander is becoming more unhinged. He
inadvertently gives Gossard the idea of using the Firefries as fuel for
the Zephyr. Rico returns to the ship with Dizzy and Doc just as it's
taking off. Zander attempts to sabotage the ship but is foiled. The
Zephyr escapes from inside the bug, and the bug is blown up by the
Zephyr's auto-destruct mechanism.
Aboard the Valley Forge on a long trip to their next campaign, the
Roughnecks have drawn watch as most of the ship's crew rests in
suspended animation. While doing a routine check on the stasis tubes,
Doc is attacked by Zander who bursts out of his stasis tube, having
evolved into a hideous half-bug, half-uman creature. The Zander Bug
eventually takes over the ship, and to keep the Roughnecks busy, shuts
down the power to the crew's stasis tubes. If the power is not restored
quickly, the entire crew in suspended animation will perish. Eventually
the Roughnecks are able to thwart Zander's plans to crash the Valley
Forge on to a mysterious planet but Brutto is severely injured and will
be sent to Earth to recoup. Unfortunately, Zander Bug escapes to the
planet surface below, which turns out to be the Bug home world of
As the squad prepares for the D-Day invasion of the bug home planet of
Klendathu, Dizzy receives an official notice from S.I.C.O.N. that her
brother, Eddie is presumed dead. The news deeply effects the normally
gungho Trooper, causing her to become skittish in battle. Unfortunately,
the orders come down for the invasion to begin. Dizzy hesitates at the
LZ and Rico, who has just been promoted to Squad leader, must determine
if she is still fit to be a part of the Roughnecks. Eventually inspired
by the fierce determination and never-say die-attitude of a Zulu Squad
Trooper, Dizzy regains her confidence in time to save the Roughnecks and
help them achieve their mission.
128 "The Mission"
While at a temporary camp on Klendathu, the Roughnecks are attacked by a
new and dangerous form of arachnid, an Imposter Bug that approximates
the size and shape of a human. Able to fit inside stolen power suits,
the Imposter Bugs represent a terrible threat to the security of
Troopers everywhere. After the attack, the Roughnecks are ordered to
rescue the crew of a downed transport ship. Upon arriving at the ship's
crash site the squad discovers that the crew have been taken hostage by
the Bugs. Even more disturbing is that the Zander Bug appears to be the
mastermind behind the kidnapping. The Roughnecks are ordered to retrieve
the hostages and terminate the Zander Bug. They track down Zander Bug to
his own Bug mound and find that he is using the captured Troopers DNA to
create ever evolving generations of Imposter Bugs. In the end, Dizzy
inspires Zander Bug to remember his humanity and he attacks his own
Bugs, allowing the Roughnecks to escape to safety.
129 "Letters Home"
The Roughnecks are facing a "Battle of the Bulge" situation on the Bug
home planet of Klendathu. They have been ordered to hold the line
against an inevitable (and overwhelming) Bug siege. The odds of
surviving are not in their favor. Throughout the night, Higgins winds up
taping a series of heartfelt "goodbyes" from each of the Troopers to
their various loved ones. When day break comes, the Troopers are able to
hold off the Bug horde long enough to be saved by massive air strike,
but the "goodbyes" leave a lasting impression on them all.
143 (C-3) - "Marooned"
The third "clip" show. This episode is not like the previous two. This
is a complete, self contained side-story with Johnny. During a drop,
Johnny's "pod" suffers a malfunction, leaving him floating in space...
After a long day of battling Bugs, the Roughnecks are called to a
mission briefing only to find themselves in the presence of Sky Marshall
Sanchez himself. The Sky Marshall confirms the existence of the Bug
Queen and assigns Alpha Squad (along with rival Echo Squad) the
difficult task of finding and exterminating her. Carl is reassigned to
the Roughnecks to aid in the mission, but the squad finds him distant
and cold, but with heightened psychic abilities. The Roughnecks are able
to fight their way into the Bug Queen's lair only to allow her escape.
Unfortunately, she's on her way to Earth.
Dozens of Fleet Ships are hunting for the Bug Queen, after she somehow
escaped during the M.I. showdown on Klendathu. At the same time, the
Roughnecks discover that Higgins had a girlfriend they didn't know
about, who just broke up with him. Rico and the others are furious that
Higgins knows everything about them, but they know nothing about him.
The Valley Forge finally tracks down the Transport Bug in which the
Queen escaped and blows it up. Unfortunately, reports of other destroyed
Transport Bugs pour in, and Carl realizes these were just decoys to
distract S.I.C.O.N. forces, allowing the Queen to take an unpredictable,
undetected route to Earth. But thanks to Carl, the Valley Forge finds
the real transport -- but it's shell is impervious to all weaponry, and
it is only 48 hours from reaching Earth. LT. Razak and the Roughnecks
embark on a covert assassination mission --sneak in, terminate the
Queen, and get out. While the Roughnecks are inside, however, they
discover the Queen is too well protected ... and the squad must risk its
own lives to blow up the Transport from the inside out. The mission
appears to be a success, and the Roughnecks return to Earth, hailed as
heroes for ending the war. But when Carl sets foot on Earth, he realizes
the Queen is still alive...and she's here.
132 "Among Us"
S.I.C.O.N. forces move into peacetime duty after the Bug Queen and her
transport are presumably terminated. But Carl insists the Queen is still
alive and here on Earth. General Redwing orders him to take some R & R,
and the Roughnecks are given their next assignment -- repairing radio
telescope receivers on the Jovian Moons. Carl, however, manages to
convince Rico that he is right...and Rico, in turn, sticks his neck to
out to convince Razak. Razak puts his career on the line, taking the
squad on a little detour to Little Butte, North Dakota, where strange
subterranean thermal readings are occurring. The town appears to be
ultra-normal, until the Roughnecks come under attack by strange human
residents who turn out to be bugs cloned with human DNA. The Roughnecks
uncover a Bug plot to infiltrate Earth society and sabotage 50 major
targets around the world, including a Cold Fusion plant in North Dakota.
The squad saves the plant, but other targets are lost by S.I.C.O.N. --
and the bug war has now come home.
When the Bug Forces launch a devastating surprise attack on Buenos
Aires, nearly destroying the city, the Roughnecks are sent in as part of
a massive ground troop assault. Rico, Carl and Dizzy are particularly
affected by this tragedy, as Buenos Aires is their hometown -- and none
of them know whether their parents are alive or dead. While Dizzy
becomes frantically obsessed with finding her parents, Rico reveals he
hasn't talked to his mother or father since the beginning of the war -
triggering a crisis of conscience. Meanwhile, Razak's Roughnecks battle
what they believe to be several new species of bugs -- tracking them
through the sewer tunnels. But each new species seems resistant to
different types of weapons. Ultimately, the Roughnecks discover these
bugs are not new species, but new mutations of the same species -
mutations caused by exposure to radioactivity inside SICON's main
weapons plant. Dizzy later discovers her parents are dead while Rico's
parents are missing and unaccounted for.
134 "Hide N' Seek"
SICON officials discover a massive bug mound outside of Buenos Aires.
Believing the bugs are mobilizing for another assault on the city, SICON
tries to bomb the hill from the air, but Plasma Tanker Bugs keep
changing locations, and three different air sorties fail when the planes
are shot down by the Tankers. The Roughnecks and four other squads are
called in to launch a covert ground attack on the Tankers - taking out
their positions so Fleet can bomb the bug mound. One of the squads winds
up tripping off the bugs to the mission, but as a result, all the Tanker
Bug positions are revealed at once. Razak organizes a massive ground
missile attack on the mound, bringing the entire structure down and
wiping out the bug compound. During the mission, Dizzy is almost killed
and Rico professes his love for her. Dizzy, however, tells Rico that he
can't love her - she's a jinx, and everyone who loves her suffer some
horrible fate. When he argues, she reminds him of his rank, calling his
behavior inappropriate. But when Rico walks away, hurt, it can be seen
that Dizzy didn't mean it. She still loves him.
When it is discovered that the bugs have a vast network of tunnels and
colonies beneath San Francisco, S.I.C.O.N. decides the only way to
ensure victory is to nuke the city - destroying everything above and
below ground. And because an evacuation of that size would kill many
people, as well as tip off the bugs, it is also decided not to warn the
civilian population. Lt. Razak protests this action, and is joined by
his old INTEL nemesis Lt. Earle Walker. Skymarshall Sanchez gives Razak
and Walker 24 hours to accomplish an alternative plan: blow massive
holes in the underwater sections of the bug tunnels, allowing water to
rush in and flush out the subterranean threat all at once. If they fail,
however, San Francisco will be destroyed by S.I.C.O.N. -- along with the
Roughnecks and Walker's Rangers. The mission is a success, but Razak is
killed by a Water Tiger during the final moments of the operation. Rico
is an emotional basketcase -- and the Roughnecks must deal with Razak's
death, as the war with the bugs grows more intense on Earth.
136 "Funeral For A Friend"
The Roughnecks are being split up. They just have time to honor Lt.
Razak's Last Will and spread his ashes over Luna Lake in Colorado. They
are joined by Razak's former love, General Redwings, and by Sgt. Brutto,
who's now a paraplegic who doubts his own worth. The unprepared squad
stumbles on a Bug operation, and Redwing and Higgins are captured. Sgt.
Rico takes command, and, with help from Brutto, saves the hostages and
destroys the bugs. Redwing offers Rico a battlefield promotion to
Lieutenant. He accepts to keep the squad together. They then spread
Razak's ashes over the Lake.
137 "Spirits Of The Departed"
The Roughnecks, with Rico as their new Lieutenant, are re-routed to
S.I.C.O.N. HQ in Oahu to help defend the island against an expected Bug
attack. Rico's not comfortable replacing Lt. Razak, and his situation
isn't helped by the addition of two new men: Pvt. Max Brutto (Sgt.
Brutto's trouble-making teen-age son) and Sgt. Charlie Zim, Razak's best
friend and Rico's former Drill Instructor. The Bugs launch an
overwhelming attack, And Rico at first falters, but he eventually pulls
it together and becomes a real leader. Unfortunately, S.I.C.O.N. is
forced to evacuate and abandon the island, and Carl informs his friends
that the worst is yet to come.
138 "The Gates Of Hell"
After a little prompting from Carl, Rico and Dizzy decide to pursue a
relationship. But as S.I.C.O.N. attempts to retake Oahu, Honolulu, City
Hall and S.I.C.O.N. HQ, Rico becomes dangerously overprotective of his
new "girlfriend." After the victory, Rico and Diz sadly agree to table
their feelings until the war's over. Seconds later, Sky Marshal Sanchez
arrives at S.I.C.O.N. HQ to congratulate his men. Suddenly, a huge pit
opens up under the building -- and Sanchez is taken down into the pit by
139-140 "The Circle Of The Damned"
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