- "Here at Robot Wars, we fear no bot!"
- — Randy Eubanks in US Season 2
Destructive Criticism was an American competitor robot entered by Team Boomer, which appeared in Season 2 of Robot Wars: Extreme Warriors and the one-off series Nickelodeon Robot Wars. It proved especially successful in the former, reaching the Grand Final of the US Championship before being defeated by reigning champion Panzer Mk 4 in the second round. The robot's name was a pun on the phrase, 'constructive criticism'.
For US Season 2, Team Boomer's captain Randy Eubanks was joined by Christian Gomez and Barry Young, with all members wearing military uniforms. Gomez and Young were replaced for Nickelodeon Robot Wars by Eubanks' daughters Caroline and Kathy, with all members wearing ordinary Robot Wars T-shirts for Destructive Criticism's appearance in that series.
Destructive Criticism was an invertible robot with a box-shaped chassis, four-wheel drive, a top speed of 17mph and exposed steel bars protecting the wheels and axles. Its weapon was an 18-inch horizontal spinning disk with three steel teeth, which spun at 1200rpm according to Stefan Frank.
The disk itself was made of aluminum, and proved capable of causing considerable damage to opponents; Randy Eubanks stated at one point that it was powerful enough to tear holes through a wall during testing. Destructive Criticism also featured a removable hinged wedge at the rear which was stated to be used for 'defense', although it was only used in the first two rounds of the Season 2 US Championship. The robot's wheels were partially exposed, as they were protected by steel bars surrounding the sides of the machine, but horizontal spinning weapons were still able to fit inbetween the bars and target the robot's wheels.
Destructive Criticism solely competed in the US Championship, appearing in Heat G as a series newcomer. In its first-round battle, it faced Season 1 returnee Run Away and fellow Extreme Warriors debutant Lightning Tracks.
At the start, Destructive Criticism drove over the Disc of Doom before pursuing and hitting the side of Lightning Tracks, which was suffering from transmission issues. It drove up Lightning Tracks' wedge-shaped body while grazing the ropes attached to the latter's side, before hitting Lightning Tracks a third time while Run Away wedged the latter underneath Refbot. All four robots separated, before Destructive Criticism hit Lightning Tracks several more times with its disk; despite having one of the ropes stuck in its weapon mechanism, it succeeded in leaving Lightning Tracks immobilized over the Disc of Doom. After Run Away drove over the top of Lightning Tracks and got itself stuck, Destructive Criticism repeatedly hit both opponents, damaging Lightning Tracks' sides and one of Run Away's wheels through its attacks.
- "Look at that! That's a solid steel wheel; Destructive Criticism's disk just went in there and mashed it up, like it's a piece of white bread!"
- — Stefan Frank as Destructive Criticism damages Run Away's wheel
Destructive Criticism's hits were enough to leave both Lightning Tracks and Run Away immobilized by the time Refbot separated them; it proceeded to attack the former a few more times as it was being counted out. Following this dominant performance, Destructive Criticism qualified for the second round, with Run Away also progressing despite the damage it sustained.
- "I believe I do have an advantage with [Marauder], but there's been a lot of major upsets so far in the competition. So, you really don't know what's going to happen 'til the buzzer sounds."
- — Randy Eubanks downplays Destructive Criticism's size and weight advantages over Marauder
In the second round, Destructive Criticism faced Marauder, which was in actuality a middleweight.
It drove across to the other side of the arena at the start, steadily approaching Marauder before slamming into it beside the wall. Destructive Criticism backed away and pursued Marauder again, hitting it twice more, but lost the star emblem on its top panel as it did so. It momentarily hesitated beside the pit, before again chasing Marauder and getting underneath it using its rear wedge. However, Destructive Criticism was unable to push Marauder along, and drove forwards over a CO2 jet to let the latter drive into Sgt. Bash's CPZ. As soon as Marauder was freed, it pursued and slammed into the latter once again, the collision causing Marauder to recoil onto the Flame Pit. Destructive Criticism deflected Marauder again with another slam, and continued hitting the latter a few more times, leaving several scratches and cuts through its sloped body.
- "Destructive Criticism seems to have his work cut out for him right now, because that disk hasn’t really been penetrating any aspect of Marauder..."
- — Stefan Frank doubts the effectiveness of Destructive Criticism's weapon as it repeatedly attacks Marauder
While attempting another slam, it proceeded to drive itself into an angle grinder, getting its own disk stuck through the grinder in the process. Destructive Criticism broke free, but its disk momentarily stopped working as a result, only to spin up again as it blocked Marauder while it tried to drive away from Dead Metal. It momentarily drove itself into Dead Metal, who promptly rammed it into Refbot. In its attempt to escape, Destructive Criticism pushed Refbot aside, and hit Marauder one more time before the latter drove itself into the pit. With this, it was declared the winner, and advanced to the Heat Final.
- Mick Foley: "Do you think you'll be able to do that kind of damage in the Finals?"
- Randy Eubanks: "I'm hoping to do a lot more damage in the Finals."
- — The post-Round 2 interview
There, Destructive Criticism fought Season 1 Tag Team Terror co-runner up General Chompsalot 2, now with its rear wedge removed.
Immediately, the two robots drove towards and circled around each other in the center of the arena, with Destructive Criticism hitting General Chompsalot 2 from the side and causing the latter to lift onto one wheel. The hit immobilized General Chompsalot 2 instantly, but Destructive Criticism immobilized itself seconds later as it made a second attack, the hit also causing its weapon chain to break.
- "They're both parallel parked right next to each other and nobody's moving! It's incredible! Talk about your 'one-hit wonders'...."
- — Stefan Frank as both competitors lay immobilized together
Refbot nudged Destructive Criticism before proceeding to count both robots out. As soon as the countdown started, Destructive Criticism twitched and reversed, before repeatedly slamming into General Chompsalot 2 as the latter was eliminated. It pressed the pit release button as Sergeant Bash and Sir Killalot attacked General Chompsalot 2, before bumping into the latter several more times as it was pushed onto the Floor Flipper. After General Chompsalot 2 was thrown across the arena and had one of its wheels broken off, Destructive Criticism pushed its removed wheel into the pit – almost pitting itself in the process – securing itself victory and a place in the Grand Final.
In the first round of the Grand Final, Destructive Criticism fought Conquering Clown 2, again without its rear wedge.
It approached Conquering Clown 2 in the opening moments and quickly backed away, surviving numerous blows and shoves from the latter as it tried to position its disk. Destructive Criticism again lost its emblem in the process, but repeatedly hit Conquering Clown 2 as the latter pushed it around, causing damage to its armor and wheelguards in the process. The two robots continued exchanging hits and shoves until Destructive Criticism tore into Conquering Clown 2's rear panel, leaving a sizeable hole in the panel as the two robots broke free. Another succession of hits knocked a red pompom off of Conquering Clown 2, which was momentarily left spinning over the Flame Pit.
With its disk spun down, Destructive Criticism proceeded to ram Conquering Clown 2 a few more times, eventually leaving it to be attacked by Sir Killalot for the remainder of the battle. The battle went to a Judges' decision, which went in favor of Destructive Criticism, putting it through to the next round. Randy Eubanks told Mick Foley afterwards that he considered the battle to be 'really close'.
- Mick Foley: "Now, here’s a big question... if you couldn't dominate the clowns, how do you expect to advance even further in the tournament?"
- Randy Eubanks: "Oh, but their sweet smiling faces! How could I even do damage to that?"
- — The post-battle interview
In the second round of the Grand Final, Destructive Criticism faced the reigning US Champion, Panzer Mk 4.
At the start, it hesitated before dodging Panzer Mk 4's initial charge, only to be pushed across the arena by the latter. Destructive Criticism responded by slamming into Panzer Mk 4's sides and scoop several times, but was unable to cause any significant damage, and was scooped up, pushed and slammed into the pit release button by Panzer Mk 4, ending up on its side as a result. It was soon knocked back onto its wheels as Panzer Mk 4 rammed into it twice more, but it soon became evident that it had lost mobility altogether. Destructive Criticism was promptly counted out by Refbot before being pushed into the pit by Panzer Mk 4 and Shunt. As a result, it was eliminated from the US Championship, effectively finishing in joint third place with The Falcon Mark 2.
- "Wow, and a quick exit – Destructive Criticism are out of there!"
- — Stefan Frank
- "We're Team Boomer, and we're gonna spin all the robots out of the arena!"
- — Kathy Eubanks
Both robots began the battle by meeting each other in the center of the arena, with Destructive Criticism stopping short of and sustaining damage to its sides from Ninjitsu's spinning square. It was deflected and bumped by Ninjitsu before driving over the CO2 pit, losing two red pieces as it spun round close to a CPZ. Destructive Criticism's disk hit Ninjitsu's square, with the robot itself sustaining more damage and left hobbling as Ninjitsu continued attacking its chassis and wheels.
Eventually, the drive chain for its disk became dislodged and broke, falling out completely as it hit Ninjitsu's side and square. Deflecting another blow, Destructive Criticism succeeded in causing Ninjitsu's own weapon belt to snap, rendering both robots weaponless as they drove around and nudged each other. It then pushed Ninjitsu into an angle grinder and the Disc of Doom activation button, before backing away in the closing seconds. 'Cease' was called, and the battle went to a Judges' decision. The decision went against Destructive Criticism, which lost the Battle of the Spinners to Ninjitsu as a result.
|DESTRUCTIVE CRITICISM - RESULTS|
Grand Final, Round 2
|Heat G, Round 1||vs. Lightning Tracks, Run Away||Qualified|
|Heat G, Round 2||vs. Marauder||Won|
|Heat G, Final||vs. General Chompsalot 2||Won|
|Grand Final, Round 1||vs. Conquering Clown 2||Won|
|Grand Final, Round 2||vs. Panzer Mk 4||Lost|
|Nickelodeon Robot Wars|
|Battle of the Spinners|
|Battle of the Spinners||vs. Ninjitsu||Lost|
- Wins: 4
- Losses: 2
|Main Series||Destructive Criticism Series Record|
|Season 1||Did not enter|
|Season 2||Third Place (Grand Final, Round 2)|
|Nickelodeon||Battle of the Spinners|
Appearances in MerchandiseEdit
Outside Robot WarsEdit
Team Boomer also entered the original series of BattleBots with three robots:
- Subject to Change Without Reason (Season 1.0-3.0) - a four-wheel drive middleweight initially armed with a pickaxe, later ramming spikes.
- GoldDigger (Long Beach '99, Season 1.0-5.0) - a sit-and-spin heavyweight with a hexagonal chassis and a static pickaxe, which reached the quarter-finals of Season 2.0.
- Goldie (Season 5.0) - a middleweight version of GoldDigger with a similar aesthetic to Destructive Criticism.
Destructive Criticism's disk actually came from Garm, a Season 3.0 middleweight built by Don Lariviere of Team Revelation, the same team who built the Panzer Mk series of robots. Lariviere loaned the disk to Randy Eubanks specifically for Destructive Criticism's appearances in the US versions of Robot Wars.
Destructive Criticism also competed in Steel Conflict 4, under the name of Fright Knight; however, it is currently unknown which fights it competed in.
- Destructive Criticism is one of four robots to regain mobility whilst being counted out.
- Following its Season 2 battle against Panzer Mk 4, Destructive Criticism ultimately lost to the team who leant it its spinning weapon (see Outside Robot Wars).