- "The adults have been hogging the controls for far too long! It's time for the kids to show Daddy how it's really done! We're talking an infant inferno, nippers with flippers! So prepare for a Minor Meltdown!"
- — Craig Charles opens the Minor Meltdown
The Minor Meltdown was a side competition broadcast as part of Robot Wars Extreme: Series 2. As its name implied, the competition was a knockout tournament between six UK Series competitors driven by children, similar in concept to the one-off series Nickelodeon Robot Wars.
The episode was originally broadcast on BBC Choice on January 16, 2003 and repeated on BBC Two on June 13, 2003.
|Dimensions||0.50 x 0.73 x 0.93m|
|Power||2 x 750W electric motors|
|Weapons||Spiked CO2 gas ram flipper|
|From: Brighton in East Sussex|
|Team Members: Joe Watts, Ian Watts & Ellie Watts|
|Killer Carrot 2|
|Dimensions||0.55 x 1.53 x 1.05m|
|Power||2 x 800W electric motors|
|From: Turners Hill in West Sussex|
|Team Members: Rob Englebright, Adam Englebright & Mark Hale|
|Dimensions||0.34 x 1.20 x 0.53m|
|Power||2x 750w electric motors|
|Weapons||Pneumatic flipper & spike|
|Weaknesses||High ground clearance|
|From: Wellingborough, Northamptonshire|
|Team Members: Scott Lockhart, Daniel Lockhart, Tony Tobbell|
|Dimensions||0.32 x 0.84 x 0.83m|
|Power||420w electric motor|
|Weapons||Flipper & spinning blade|
|Weaknesses||Exposed rear wheels|
|From: Southampton, Hampshire|
|Team Members: Francis Gallagher, Ian Aldridge & Kevin Gallagher|
|Dimensions||0.55 x 1.30 x 0.94m|
|Power||350w Electric Motor|
|Weapons||Lifter, Thumper & Spinner|
|Strengths||Tough as old boots|
|Weaknesses||No Side Weapons|
|From: Chesham, Buckinghamshire|
|Team Members: Ryan Delph, Chris Delph, Gordon Johncock|
|Dimensions||0.76 x 1.60 x 1.20m|
|Power||2 x Wheelchair motors|
|Weapons||Spike, ram and fork lifter|
|Strengths||Big & strong|
|From: Ludlow in Shropshire|
|Team Members: Paul Snook, Conrad Snook & Luke Angell|
The Minor Meltdown was a straightforward knockout tournament with a similar format to the heats of The Fourth Wars and various other Extreme 2 competitions. Six competitors would be grouped into two three-way 'Eliminators', with two robots going through to the Semi-Finals. The two winning Semi-Finalists would meet each other in a one-on-one Final, where the winner would be crowned Minor Meltdown champion.
Bigger Brother vs Lambsy vs Saw PointEdit
- "Bigger Brother, very much the favourite here..."
- — Jonathan Pearce as Bigger Brother attacks Saw Point
At the start of the battle, Lambsy charged at Saw Point, the sheep falling off the top as Lambsy tried to clamp onto one of Saw Point's rear wheels. Lambsy couldn't get a hold of the wheel as Saw Point turned away, but Lambsy got its jaw under the other rear wheel, getting it between its jaws. The two robots pushed against each other, until Lambsy let Saw Point go. Saw Point drove away, but Bigger Brother chased after it, getting around its front and trying to flip it, but failed to do so as it didn't have the flipper under its opponent enough. Saw Point drove past Bigger Brother as it tried to line up another attack, and Bigger Brother drove into Lambsy. The two reversed away from each other, then Saw Point reversed into Lambsy, which got its jaw around one of Saw Point's rear wheels. Saw Point got out, but Bigger Brother rammed into its side, pushed it across the arena and flipped it over. Saw Point did not have a self-righting mechanism, leaving it immobile, and Bigger Brother pushed it against Lambsy, pushing both robots up the arena together.
- "Can Ryan Delph, who loves his insects, get that sort of bird-like creature righted? Because Saw Point is in trouble!"
- — Jonathan Pearce as Bigger Brother pushes the overturned Saw Point
Lambsy drove away, and Bigger Brother pushed Saw Point towards Growler's CPZ. Growler came out of the CPZ to grab Saw Point, slamming it against the wall. Meanwhile, Bigger Brother continued to fight Lambsy, ramming it against the wall and trying to flip it. Growler slammed Saw Point into the wall, causing one of the wheels to fall off. As Refbot came over to count Saw Point out, Bigger Brother was still fighting Lambsy on the other side of the arena, pushing it against the wall. Refbot counted Saw Point out whilst Bigger Brother flipped Lambsy over, revealing that one of its tyres was ripped.
- "Two machines survive this Round 1 phase to fight again, and I don't think it'll be Saw Point, they're being counted out by the Refbot. It now means damage limitation for Bigger Brother and Lambsy, they will go through to the next stage of Minor Meltdown, they've realised that now, I think they'll cease hostilities..."
- — Jonathan Pearce as Refbot counts out Saw Point
Once Refbot had finished counting Saw Point out, Sir Killalot pulled it away, taking it to the centre of the arena and spinning it around, throwing it aside. Meanwhile, Bigger Brother pushed Lambsy into the pit.
- "Bigger Brother dumps Lambsy into the sheep pen, Lambsy will live to fight again."
- — Jonathan Pearce as Bigger Brother pits Lambsy
Growler grabbed Saw Point in its jaws, pushing it up the arena and ramming it into Refbot. Growler bit Saw Point's remaining rear wheel and slammed the robot against the wall. The wheel came off Saw Point, leaving it with only one wheel. Sir Killalot grabbed Saw Point, pulled it away from the wall and lifted it up, taking it to the Drop Zone, where a load of car parts and a refrigerator were dropped on it. Sir Killalot lifted Saw Point from the wreckage, and carried it to the bottom of arena, and dropped it over the fence. Finally, Growler pushed the refrigerator from the drop zone into the pit on top of Lambsy. Lambsy humorously lifted the refrigerator up and down with its lifter.
- Phillipa Forrester: "That was ... what was it? You tell me!"
- Ryan Delph!: "That was, that was the best fight I've ever seen!"
- Phillipa Forrester: "It was the best fight I've ever seen! It was fantastic!"
- Ryan Delph!: "There won't be much damage, there won't be as much damage in Robot Wars as this!"
- — Ryan Delph is happy despite all the damage in the post-battle interview
Qualified: Bigger Brother & Lambsy
Rick vs Killer Carrot 2 vs Tetanus 2Edit
- "Don't forget, two of these machines will survive to go through to Round 2 of the Minor Meltdown. Killer Carrot 2, with that flipper, will be one of the favourites..."
- — Jonathan Pearce at the start of the battle
Rick started by charging at the side of Killer Carrot 2, trying to get its flipper under the lifter, but it failed to get under Killer Carrot 2, so Rick missed its flip and drove onto Killer Carrot 2's lifter. Rick quickly reversed off before Killer Carrot 2 fired the lifter. Tetanus 2 drove at Killer Carrot 2, getting its front prongs underneath. Tetanus 2 pushed Killer Carrot 2 towards the flame pit and tried to lift it, but Rick got behind Tetanus 2 and flipped it. Tetanus 2 did not fall over due to having Killer Carrot 2 on the lifter, but had to stop for a moment to get its wheels down. Rick bumped into Tetanus 2's side, and Killer Carrot 2 fired its lifter to try and get off of Tetanus 2's lifter, but Tetanus 2 was still able to push Killer Carrot 2 onto the flame pit. Killer Carrot 2 turned away as Tetanus 2 reversed, but in doing so drove into an angle grinder. As Killer Carrot 2 reversed over the flame pit, Rick charged at Tetanus 2, getting underneath and flipping its opponent on its back. Tetanus 2 raised its lifter to try and right itself, but because of the weight of the frame, it was stuck on its back. Rick reversed into it, pushing it against Killer Carrot 2. As the two robots pushed against Tetanus 2, Tetanus 2 closed its lifter, which caused it to fall back on its wheels. Tetanus 2 turned around and drove away from its opponents, before turning back and driving at Killer Carrot 2, trying to get its prongs underneath.
- "Killer Carrot flipping, uh ... thin air, actually! So not great style or driving controls from Adam Englebright, who's been chatting away in the pits, and uh, chatting away in the pits, and chatting away in the pits! He's not chatting now, he's concentrating"
- — Jonathan Pearce after Killer Carrot randomly fires its lifter.
Rick took advantage, driving under Killer Carrot 2 and trying to flip it, but because it was also under Tetanus 2's lifter, only managed to lift it a little. Tetanus 2 raised its lifter and reversed to separate itself from Rick and Killer Carrot 2. Killer Carrot 2 fell of of Rick's flipper, and drove to the other side of the arena. Tetanus 2 followed it, and Killer Carrot 2 turned to face it. This allowed Tetanus 2 to get its lifter under the front of Killer Carrot 2, but Killer Carrot 2 reversed as Tetanus 2 began to raise its lifter. Tetanus 2 drove at Killer Carrot 2, but drove at the wrong angle, driving one wheel straight onto Killer Carrot 2's lifter. Killer Carrot 2 lifted it a little a couple of times, but Tetanus 2 fell off the lifter unaffected.
- "...and all these are such keen roboteers, the next generation coming through."
- — Jonathan Pearce
Both robots reversed, then drove at each other, with Tetanus 2 using its lifter to push Killer Carrot 2 against an angle grinder. Killer Carrot 2 pushed back at Tetanus 2, getting its lifter under Tetanus 2 whilst Rick opened the pit. Tetanus 2 got off Killer Carrot 2's lifter, but still had its lifter raised, and Rick rushed over, getting under Tetanus 2's lifter and flipping the robot onto its back. Tetanus 2 started to raise its lifter to try and self-right, but Killer Carrot 2 got its lifter under Tetanus 2, preventing it from self-righting and pushing it towards the pit, where it turned around and reversed it into the pit.
- "Wonder if Tetanus 2 is too big to go down that pit, 76cm high, 60cm long, one hundred and twenty kilos wide. "
- — Jonathan Pearce as Killer Carrot 2 pushes Tetanus 2 towards the pit
Qualified: Rick & Killer Carrot 2
Lambsy vs Killer Carrot 2Edit
- "To me, Lambsy looked the more energetic in the first round fight..."
- — Jonathan Pearce in the opening moments of the battle
At the start, the two robots drove towards each other, with Lambsy driving past Killer Carrot 2. The two robots turned to face each other, and Lambsy drove straight at Killer Carrot 2, but drove straight onto the lifter, which allowed Killer Carrot 2 to flip Lambsy onto its top. The sheep mascot fell off, and Lambsy was left stuck on its side on top of Killer Carrot 2.
- "There's no place for woolly minds out there, I can tell you!"
- — Jonathan Pearce after the sheep mascot fell off
Killer Carrot 2 moved forwards, causing Lambsy to fall off the top, and Lambsy reversed. Killer Carrot 2 turned around, but drove straight into the sheep mascot, which blocked it. Killer Carrot 2 reversed and tried to drive around it, but instead drove onto it. Killer Carrot 2 turned, and as it pushed past the mascot, Lambsy charged at it, using its jaw to lift Killer Carrot 2 onto the mascot. Killer Carrot 2 was briefly stuck, but managed to get off the sheep by spinning, and got its lifter under the side of Lambsy, flicking it up a little. Killer Carrot 2 tried to get its lifter underneath again, but Lambsy reversed, so Killer Carrot 2 missed its flip.
- "Lambsy's graze on grass, surely, not root vegetables!"
- — Jonathan Pearce
Lambsy got its jaw under one of Killer Carrot 2's wheels, and pushed Killer Carrot 2 up the arena, ramming it into the arena wall and pushing it into Mr. Psycho's CPZ. However, Mr. Psycho hammered Lambsy instead of Killer Carrot 2, despite the fact Lambsy was only on the edge of the CPZ. Killer Carrot 2 pushed back at Lambsy, getting away from the wall, and Lambsy turned away to let Killer Carrot 2 go. Lambsy drove close to the flame pit, and Killer Carrot 2 drove after it, driving over the sheep mascot that had fallen off Lambsy earlier. Killer Carrot 2 missed its charge and drove on the edge of Lambsy's flipper/jaw, but Lambsy mistimed its flip, so Killer Carrot 2 turned off in time. However, as it turned around, the right wheel came loose and rolled away from the robot.
- "They've lost a wheel! Now how on earth did that happen?! They seemed well in control, and were pushing back onto Lambsy, but the wheel has come off the Carrot!"
- — Jonathan Pearce
Killer Carrot 2 was left spinning on the spot, knocking the wheel and sending it rolling into Mr. Psycho's CPZ, where the huge House Robot picked it up. Lambsy drove down the arena and opened the pit as Mr. Psycho came over to Killer Carrot 2, still holding the wheel. As it drove at Killer Carrot 2, the competitor got the flipper under the front of Mr. Psycho and tried flipping it, but the House Robot was far too heavy, causing Killer Carrot 2 to over balance forwards. Mr. Psycho drove around Killer Carrot 2 as it span, and Killer Carrot 2 got the lifter under the front of Mr. Psycho, but again merely overbalanced forwards. Mr. Psycho dropped the wheel on top of Killer Carrot 2 and pushed the robot aside with his claw. After Dead Metal pushed Killer Carrot 2, Refbot started to count it out.
- "...and I think Lambsy, so far in the Minor Meltdown, have been good value. Killer Carrot, fancied to get to the final though, they'll progress no further."
- — Jonathan Pearce as Refbot counts out Killer Carrot 2
Killer Carrot 2 continued to spin on the spot, and managed to drive into the side of Refbot, getting its lifter and lifting it up. This did nothing to stop Refbot counting it out, though as Refbot fell off and landed on the floor, the lights on his card system flashed incorrectly, and the fire extinguisher went off. Dead Metal got behind Killer Carrot 2, grabbing it and cutting into it with his saw. Mr. Psycho drove at the other side of Killer Carrot 2 and hammered it. Killer Carrot 2 made another futile at lifting Mr. Psycho, causing it to overbalance forwards again. Dead Metal continued cutting into Killer Carrot 2 as Mr. Psycho landed another hammer blow. Killer Carrot 2 was pushed onto the floor flipper, but Killer Carrot 2 span off the flipper, but then turned back onto the flipper, and it was thrown. Killer Carrot 2 continued to spin, and Mr. Psycho drove onto its lifter, managing to lift Mr. Psycho a little as it overbalanced again. Mr. Psycho hammered Killer Carrot 2 and reversed off the lifter. Dead Metal pushed Killer Carrot 2 to the edge of the pit. Killer Carrot 2 turned back and forth to try and get away from the pit, nearly reversing into it in the process, until Dead Metal finished it off by pushing it in.
- "Well, living proof that real robots don't just each meat, they eat vegetables as well! Killer Carrot, out of the competition! Lambsy, they go growling on!"
- — Craig Charles after the battle
Bigger Brother vs RickEdit
Rick drove at Bigger Brother, but Bigger Brother drove around its opponent and drove up the arena. Bigger Brother stopped by the floor flipper as Rick drove after it, and when Rick got close, Bigger Brother turned so its back was facing Rick and reversed its opponent into the CPZ. Rick pushed back at Bigger Brother, getting its flipper under the side and lifting it up. Rick managed to get Bigger Brother under its flipper, and started to push, but Sir Killalot came over to the CPZ. Rick let Bigger Brother go and quickly got out of the CPZ as well, getting the flipper under Bigger Brother, but Rick did not have the flipper fully underneath its opponent, so only managed to lift it a little. Bigger Brother tried to get behind Rick, but Rick span around, so Bigger Brother turned away. The two competitors drove around each other, trying to get in a good position to attack, before Rick reversed away.
- "Spinning, trying to line up the angle for an attack on Bigger Brother, they won't be able to expose any ground clearance, zero ground clearance on Bigger Brother, they try and get their flipper to work. This is a good battle, best of the Minor Metldown so far!"
- — Jonathan Pearce as the two robots try to get in the best position to attack
Bigger Brother drove at it, and Rick drove at Bigger Brother, but couldn't get under the front of Bigger Brother, so missed its flip. Bigger Brother got its flipper under the side of Rick, but Rick turned off the flipper, so Bigger Brother missed with the flip. Bigger Brother tried pushing Rick, but Rick turned to avoid it. Bigger Brother turned around and charged at Rick, but Rick dodged, only for Bigger Brother to get behind Rick and flip it over. Meanwhile, Dead Metal's blade suddenly went rolling across the arena floor, rolling all the way to the opposite arena wall, where it fell between the crack between the arena wall and floor.
- "Oh, what's that coming across the arena? Look at that It's Dead Metal's blade! Where on Earth did that come from? Where's it gone too?"
- — Jonathan Pearce as Dead Metal's saw goes rolling across the arena
Bigger Brother drove down the arena, with Rick chasing after it, and Bigger Brother reversed into the pit release button. As Rick got close, Bigger Brother drove into it, knocking it and causing it to miss with the flipper. Rick tried to drive away, but nearly drove into the pit. After turning around, Rick drove up the arena, waiting for Bigger Brother by an empty CPZ. Bigger Brother followed it, and when it caught up with Rick, it tried to push Rick into the arena wall, but Rick drove around Bigger Brother.
- "Both of these were teetering on the brink there of the pit. They're edgy, canny young drivers at the controls, it's a tactical battle now. Will it go to the judges, I wonder? They've fought tooth and nail, flipper to flipper!"
- — Jonathan Pearce as the two competitors drive up the arena to fight by the CPZ
However, the two robots had driven into the CPZ, and Dead Metal, now without a saw, came over, grabbing Rick and pushing it against the wall. As he did this, Rick tried to flip Bigger Brother, but missed as it was not properly underneath its opponent. However, thanks to Dead Metal's pushing, Rick got the flipper blade under Bigger Brother, and managed to clamp down as it closed the flipper. Bigger Brother turned to get out, pushing Rick into the arms of Dead Metal. Dead Metal tried to grab Rick, but the arms were in the raised position, so it failed to hold Rick as he reversed. Bigger Brother blocked Rick's escape as it tried to escape, then rammed it against the wall. Dead Metal also reversed into Rick, slamming it against the wall. This briefly left the House Robot stuck on Rick, but Bigger Brother gave Dead Metal a flip to lift him free.
- "Is Rick still moving? Is Rick still moving? Dead Metal's come in. I think Rick might have been immobilised! It's certainly, at this moment in time, statuesque to say the least!"
- — Jonathan Pearce notices Rick's lack of movement
Rick was now immobile, and Dead Metal rammed it again. Sir Killalot came over and pulled the immobile competitor out of the CPZ, and after struggling to grab Rick due to its wedge shape, pushed it onto the Disc of Doom, where Refbot counted it out.
- "There are Southampton supporters in the Rick team. They used to play at The Dell, this is Robot Wars Hell for Rick! And the end is now imminent! Southampton now play at St. Mary's, and they [the Rick team] need a little bit of divine intervention, and a miracle or two, to stay in this!"
- — Jonathan Pearce as Rick is counted out
The Disc of Doom was activated, but Rick quickly slid off. Bigger Brother tried to get behind Rick to push it away, but the Disc of Doom knocked it aside. Bigger Brother tried again, but lost control due to the spinning Disc of Doom, driving into Dead Metal, who pushed Bigger Brother away. Dead Metal went after Rick, and after driving onto the Disc of Doom, pushed Rick to the edge of the pit, then pushed it down before Bigger Brother could do so.
- "Good battle, fine stuff! Good young talent!"
- — Jonathan Pearce as Cease is called
Winner: Bigger Brother
Bigger Brother vs LambsyEdit
- Jonathan Pearce: "I think Lambsy are a little bit lucky to get this far, I've gotta go Bigger Brother. I think Joe's going to be a really good roboteer when he gets older."
- Phillipa Forrester: "Lambsy have fought fantastically, and we saw that fantastic image of the washing machine in the pit going up and down, because Lambsy were still there underneath fighting, and I loved that, but I think Bigger Brother as well."
- — Jonathan Pearce and Phillipa Forrester's predictions for the final
At the start of the battle, Lambsy charged at Bigger Brother with its jaw open, but Bigger Brother swerved past it. The two robots turned to face each other and charged at each other, but when Lambsy drove onto Bigger Brother's flipper, it quickly turned and drove away.
- "They fought right at the start of this Minor Meltdown, perhaps they were feeling each other out, perhaps they sensed they were the best machines."
- — Jonathan Pearce in the early moments of the battle
Lambsy drove towards the flame pit and turned around, but Bigger Brother quickly drove to the side of Lambsy. Lambsy turned, facing down the arena, but this allowed Bigger Brother to get behind it and flip it onto its side. Lambsy was stuck on its side, as the jaws were open, so it could not roll back to its wheels.
- "Lambsy, the only position Bigger Brother could have put Lambsy in to stop it immediately was on its side, they've done it, that is very good driving by Joe Watts, and Lambsy are beaten by the outstanding Minor Meltdown team!"
- — Jonathean Pearce as Lambsy is stuck on its side
Bigger Brother reversed into the pit release button, and when the pit opened, Bigger Brother got behind Lambsy and reversed it into the pit.
- "Oh dear, oh dear! All over in less than a minute! Lambsy gets thrown to the wolves, the winner of the Minor Meltdown - Bigger Brother!"
- — Craig Charles after the battle
Minor Meltdown Champion: Bigger Brother
- "They're all off to wash their grubby little paws, 'cause it's all dirty business, it's Robot Wars!"
- — Craig Charles' sign-off
- When originally announced on the Robot Wars discussion forums, the competition rules stated that team members had to be aged twelve or younger, and that adults, whilst able to help, could not appear with the teams on screen. Neither of these rules were in place in the episode as filmed.
- "Six teams of tiny roboteers, all under the age of 12, take to the controls to show their Dad's how to do it and become the Junior Champion of Robot Wars. If you've got a son or daughter who deserves to win let us know - or a godchild, friend of the family, neighbours kids, whatever. Open to anyone under the age of 12 years old. Naturally, for health and safety reasons adults will be involved in the team - but behind the scenes and not in vision. "
- — Official announcement for the Minor Meltdown from the Robot Wars Forum
- The two young members of the Tetanus team were the only competitors over the age of 12, with Luke Angel being 15 years old, and Conrad Snook 14 years old.
- The Minor Meltdown final between Bigger Brother and Lambsy is ranked equal twenty-sixth in the Shortest Battles in UK Robot Wars.
- Bigger Brother previously fought Rick in Nickelodeon Robot Wars and Killer Carrot 2 in the Sixth Wars, leaving Tetanus 2 as the only robot in this episode not to battle Bigger Brother. They both previously appeared in Heat I of Series 5, with both fighting 3 Stegs 2 Heaven in that heat.
- All battles in this episode ended with a pitting, although in the first battle, Lambsy had already won as Saw Point was defeated before Lambsy was pitted. Therefore, this episode featured no judges' decisions.
- Saw Point was the only beaten robot in this competition not to be pitted.
- In the fourth battle, Jonathan Pearce mistakenly stated that Bigger Brother had defeated Razer in the past when it lost to it in the Series 5 Grand Final.
- Saw Point, Team Coyote and Tetanus all appeared again in Heat E of Series 7, with Team Coyote fighting them both there.