The Titans immerse themselves in different video game worlds.
Gathered near a metallic hatch, Robin expresses his eagerness to show them what secret lies behind the door- it's filled with adventure (cracks whip adventure style), intrigue, and plenty of danger. Beast Boy just looks at him and wonders if he ever gets tired of being excited all the time. Robin reports yes, and he's taking therapy to lower his blood pressure. But he has reason to be exhilarated, as something beyond their imagination awaits them. Starfire repeats "imagination" in awe, and Cyborg asks if SHE ever gets tired of saying "ooh!" to every statement. She confesses she does so just to be courteous, and her eye twitches a little. Robin is about to continue his speech, but Raven just wants him to open the door already. Disappointed, Robin types in the code and all of them enter the misty room, made even more spectacular with some epic music.
But Cyborg's disappointed... it's barren of anything but blue squares. But Robin clues them in on what exactly it is- a virtual reality room, where anything can be created via imagination. Cyborg is then quite impressed but loses interest when Robin says it's for training. Raven asks if he really has to make everything fun boring, and he confirms it, also on therapy for that mental illness. Robin gets Beast Boy and Starfire a little hyped up saying imagination and then plugs in a game cartridge in the wall. unresponsive, he blows gently on the data chip and reinserts it. The walls start blinking red, and a flash of light then erupts.
All of the Teen Titans are now heavily pixelated and set in a grassy video game environment, with chiptune music playing. Cyborg and Raven are not impressed with the graphics, and Robin sees they are poor by seeing a lame hand twirling animation. When Cyborg asks if this is just a hyped-up virtual game, Robin denies it. Even though the graphics suggest it is, it's actually a training session for all of them, to test their abilities in the form of games. He gets pumped up again, and the logo pops up (which reads "IMAGINATION: PUSH START TO PLAY"). Starfire sarcastically cheers, and because of her bright attitude, he selects her first...
Starfire admires a lovely waterfall scene, the title screen for Starfire's Quest: The Legend of the Legendary Quest. Flying out into a village square, she enters a rocky house, in which an Old Man inhabits. In the torch lit room, he imposes a sword upon Starfire, but she doesn't accept; she won't need it on her journey. The Old Man persists, saying going alone is hazardous. But Starfire points out that he's alone, and he goes into a sob story about his wife leaving him. Starfire senses the awkwardness in the room and tries to leave, but he keeps moping about being alone, knocking over a lamp post. Starfire offers him to tag along, and he excitedly follows her out of the building, bringing his obsolete stick. Outside, a gang of Land Squids. At first, the Old Man strikes out but surrenders quickly when ink is spurted all over his face. He begs Star to take them down, but she reverts to her usual kindness, singing and scratching them all over. The squids are touched and break out in dancing. One of them even joins her in the mission.
Continuing the journey, the three come upon a cottage house, where a chicken is running loose. The owner is fretting (she trips for no reason), begging Starfire to catch the foul, Coocalacka. Once again, the Old Man tries to go one on one with the hen, but she easily dodges the sword blow and jumps at his head, pecking him in the eyeballs and stepping on him. Starfire is offered a completely useless empty bottle if she can capture Coocalacka. Although the reward is stupid, she again treats the chicken with love, scratching it under its neck. The four now start dancing again in jubilance. The Old Man is mystified: Starfire is amassing a mighty army to kill the treacherous boss. But Starfire remarks that she solely wishes to dance! Across dark forests, rocky outcroppings, and Hell's gates, multiple enemies, including Slimes, Skeletons, and Juggerknights join in with the dance party. It's too bad though... they never did get to fighting the Evil Wizard, and he took over the world.
Cross the Street from 1981 is up next, with a pixel Beast Boy standing on a sidewalk overlooking a highway with multiple speedy vehicles. Although he wanted a harder game, he transforms into a "froggy-frog" and jumps at it- and gets flattened right off the bat, a little crossbones mark where he died. He just didn't see that 18-wheeler though, and tries again. Killed on the second lane. 6 more tries, and he still can't traverse the road, getting smashed every time. Complaining about the unskilled drivers, he almost makes it to the river, only to be gobbled up by an orange snake. Simply using the crosswalk doesn't work either, even though he has the right away. but then it comes to him: be a chicken, what with all the "how did the chicken get to the other side of the road?" jokes. Easily dodging vehicles, he gets cocky, trailin,g and jumping right on them. However, Beast Boy gets careless, and is bitten by an alligator... all lives used!
Raven gets her training while playing Circle Guy, made in 1978. Looking like a ghost, along with Pink Raven, Red Raven, and Purple Raven, she is admiring her appearance when she sees Circle Guy munching their dots. Raven orders an attack, but is angry when the other Raven Ghosts just dash around the maze withouta strategy. After Circle Guy takes their cherry, Raven mobilizes them to corner him into, well, the corner. However, it quickly backfires when he eats a Power Ball, and they retreat. Raven mourns Stinky (Pink Raven)'s inability to get away, and once again rallies the remaining Rae-ghosts. Thye manage to surround him all sides, but suddenly, Mrs. Circle Guy barges out of nowhere and eats the fleeing ghosts. Raven's eyes roll (in fact, the only body part left!) as the two Circle fiancés kiss each other.
A truck empties of the T-Car in the Pie Hunter video game, and Cyborg is eager to get underway, checking his engine, mirrors, and turns signals. He starts driving, and no sooner than that, two cars bump into him. He shouts at the fools, and even more supersonic cars pass by. Cyborg has to dodge them, and a car honks at him from behind for driving so slow. He yells to go around, and scolds them for abusing the privilege to drive. A skull car annoys him by tailgating, and when Cyborg taunts him, the driver rear-ends him. Both spin out and land up in the ditch. Cyborg is enraged even more so that the Russian racer thinks it's his fault. He won't except any pleas for cash (the reckless driver can't afford another insurance debacle), so he drives off in annoyance. Spotting an "EAT PIE" sign, Cyborg grows excite, but is soon horrified as the businessman returns with his car, shooting bursts of bullets at him. Cyborg has to avoid the road rage, so he hops into his car, dodging the machine gun rounds. Paralyzed in fear as the spy tries side-ramming him, he narrowly misses a pothole. The man can't evade it in time, and to Cyborg's delight, he blows up. he finally reaches the store and pulls into the parking lot, humming a pie song. Unfortunately, the crazed man returns in a helicopter, shooting bullets at Cyborg. His ride and the pie shop are exploded, and Cyborg falls to the ground in agony, hatred flaring.
The final mission is Robin's, taking place in a sunset world with bricks which is the Save the Princess video game. Robin starts off his campaign, justice in his eye. A snail lies in his path, so he steps on it. To make sure it's nice and dead, he keeps stomping on it until, to his disappointment, it falls off the map. He gets back to the mission but soon is distracted by a block with a "?" symbol. Wondering what's enclosed, he headbutts it, and a dollar falls to the ground. Pleased, he continues hitting it, bills floating to the ground, until he's about to fall over, unconscious. Still dazed, he gets refocused on the mission, climbing a slope and bypassing a red pipe; he must remain on course. But he can't resist the urge and backtracks to the pipe. But it's a dumb decision- the only thing that awaits him in a sewage pipe is sewage. Sloshing and drowning in the sewage, he is heavily grossed out and dies. Choosing not to continue on, he gets the "GAME OVER" screen and the episode ends.
- Beast Boy
- Raven's Emoticlones
- Old Man (debut; only appearance)
- Evil Wizard (debut; only appearance)
- Land Squids (debut; only appearance)
- Coocalacka (debut; only appearance)
- Circle Guy (debut; only appearance)
- Pie Hunter (debut; only appearance)
- Princess (mentioned)
- This episode aired one year after "Más y Menos".
- Raven and Cyborg play as characters who are antagonists in their respective game parodies, with Raven and her emoticlones being the ghosts, and Cyborg being the spy.
- Once again, Silkie does not appear in this episode.
- Even though the show receives negative reception, this is one of the more positively received episodes due to its creative ideas and concepts.
- When the starting screen says "IMAGINATION", it can be seen that it also says it was made in 1984 at the bottom right corner of the title.
- Innuendo: Raven asks why Circle Guy is eating their "balls".
- This episode is similar to "Dreams," as it features each of the Titans having their own separate plots irrelevant to each other. Also, Starfire is once again shown first and has the longest focus.
- Robin states he has started taking therapy, which is consistent with several past episodes, where his sanity has been questionable.
- Beast Boy complaining about how he never gets the hard tasks is similar to what he said in "Brain Food."
- The Pac-Man ghosts for Raven's game represent three of Raven's Emoticlones from "Colors of Raven."
- This is the third time the Titans appear in an 8-bit game. Cyborg did in his dream during "Dreams," and Robin did in "Serious Business." From Cyborg's perspective, this is the second time his dream/imagination appeared in a video game style.
- This is the third time Cyborg has sung "I Love Pie". ("Pie Bros," "Let's Get Serious")
- This makes it the most frequent appearing song to date.
- This is also the second time Robin has been in a Mario game. ("Serious Business")
- Robin's love of money is shown again. ("Missing," "Two Bumble Bees and a Wasp")
- As Robin tells the Titans about his Virtual Reality Simulator, he briefly changes into the outfit resembling that of Indiana Jones.
- The game cartridge and in-game animation are similar to 8-bit consoles such as the Nintendo Entertainment System.
- Robin blowing on the cartridge is a famous Nintendo and SEGA method used to fix video game cartridges that wouldn't be read by the console. This is typical with most consoles made before the year 2000 because they used cartridges before they used discs.
- The opening sequence with Robin keeps repeating "imagination" is a reference to an episode of SpongeBob SquarePants known as "Idiot Box", where SpongeBob repeats the expression "imagination" with a rainbow forming over the word while saying the word in slow motion.
- The "imagination" phrase is/was also repeatedly used in the Japanese Tokusatsu 38th Super Sentai Series Ressha Sentai Toqger.
- During the 'title screen' of the Imagination game, Robin holds a controller that has the same design as a Famicom (Japanese Nintendo Entertainment System) controller.
- "Starfire's Quest: the Legend of the Legendary Quest" is a parody of The Legend of Zelda, as well as The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past.
- The character selection screen hints towards the character select screen of Super Mario Bros. 2
- The cut-scenes that show Starfire scratching the coocalacka and land squid are designed to be like the ending cut-scenes from The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Ages and The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Seasons.
- The coocalacka shares many visual similarities to Cucoos.
- The woman offering Starfire an empty bottle references a side quest in The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, where Link has to get the cuckoos back into their pen, and the woman (who is strangely allergic to them) rewards you with an empty bottle.
- Beast Boy's video game is a parody of the Frogger franchise, as well as the mobile game, Crossy Road.
- Cross the Street was released in 1981, the same year the original Frogger was released.
- Raven's video game is a parody of Pac-Man.
- Pink Raven is referred to by Raven as "Pinky", which is the name of the pink ghost in Pac-Man.
- Cyborg's game is a parody of Spy Hunter.
- Robin's game is a parody of Super Mario Bros.
- There are snail enemies that resemble (but don't act like) Koopa Troopas.
- The "!" Blocks resemble the "?" Blocks, but release dollar bills when hit instead of coins.
- Robin even enters a Mario-style pipe and falls into a sewer.
- Beast Boy is given seven lives in his game, but dies more than seven times.
- The person chasing Cyborg in Pie Hunter was talking with a Russian accent, not an Asian accent (as he should).
- Circle Guy (which is a parody of Pac-Man) was released in 1978. However, the original Pac-Man was released in 1980, two years after the release of Circle Guy.
- Raven refers to Pink Raven in Circle Guy as Stinky. The pink ghost in Pac-Man was actually referred to as "Pinky". However, Orange Raven was not in this episode.
- When Cyborg gets to the Pie Shop in his game, if you put the captions on, the captions say: "When I say apple you say pie! Apple pie! Apple pie!", when it's supposed to say: "When I say I want you say pie! I want pie! I want pie!". However, this only happens on FiOS TV.
- The episode continues the gag from previous episodes of Robin ruining something that the other Titans would find fun.
- The Titans losing their games.
- Starfire dancing after succeeding at something in her game.
- Beast Boy getting killed while crossing the street in his game.
- The other Titans' being annoying when Robin says "Imagination!".
The transcript for "Video Game References" can be found here.
|The image gallery for Video Game References may be viewed here.|