- "A power-packed robot capable of pulling a Land Rover and cleaving all opponents in two with that sharpened steel axe"
- — Jonathan Pearce in Heat A of Series 1, the introduction of Shunt.
Shunt was one of the four original House Robots from the UK TV show Robot Wars. Present for every series of Robot Wars, Robot Wars Extreme and all international versions, Shunt had a reputation as one of the most powerful and reliable House Robots, and was distinguished by his set of bulldozing scoops and ploughs, and a powerful overhead axe.
Shunt drew inspiration from railway shunting engines and bulldozers, hence his name.
In all versions, Shunt featured a front snow plough and rear scoop, used to ram and lift competitors out of CPZs or onto their sides or backs. He was described in the Robot Wars Technical Manual as a cross between a snowplough, a bulldozer and a steam-powered tank. Shunt's chassis and scoops were made of steel, while his superstructure was made out of moulded fibreglass. Shunt was the lightest of the original four House Robots, although he still remained over the weight limit for competitors.
Shunt proved to be a very reliable robot, more so than the other House Robots, and was often used to push immobilised robots to the edge of the arena at the end of a battle, as a quicker alternative to bringing out the official cleaner/sweeper Shove, which was believed to be an early prototype of Shunt.
- "As producer I needed Shunt - it was totally reliable. We needed it to get the disabled robots off the stage."
- — Tom Gutteridge
Shunt's main weapon was an overhead axe, though the axe did not feature in early design sketches, and was added onto the back of Shunt during production at the suggestion of Chris Reynolds. In Series 1, this axe was a low-impact bladed axe, which was replaced for Series 2 with a spiked pickaxe which was capable of punching holes through competitors' armour, and was similar to those later found on Dominator 2 and Kat 3.
- "The axe was put on afterwards, as a little after thought, and its been gradually modified and improved each year, so its now become its major weapon."
- — Malcolm Tierney, who created and maintained Shunt
In Series 3, the pickaxe was replaced with Shunt's signature pneumatically-powered "diamond-edged axe", which featured a distinctive head combining elements of bladed and spiked axes, and was capable of firing at over 500 kgf/cm² (7,000 psi). His scoop was also made able to lift through its own pneumatics system, and could also be used to free Shunt's axe in the event it became embedded in a competitor robot's armour. Shunt had a low ground clearance from the front and rear, although this sometimes resulted in him getting stuck on ramps during the Gauntlet in earlier series.
Shunt's power source was repeatedly described as a "cold fusion" engine, referring to the hypothetical but elusive method of creating nuclear energy at room temperature. This was inspired by his fictitious backstory in the Technical Manual, where he was perpetuated to be a Soviet drone that became sentient during a nuclear disaster.
For Series 8, the original Shunt was retired and a new model was built by Robo Challenge alongside newer versions of Matilda, Dead Metal and Sir Killalot. Although still the lightest House Robot, Shunt now weighed 327kg, has been significantly enlarged and has a top speed of 11mph, further improving his pushing power. His new axe is made from titanium, and strikes in a quarter of a second, often producing sparks on impact. Meanwhile, his 300psi HARDOX scoop can now lift up to 350kg, and has the power to pull a van. Shunt's design remains similar to his earlier incarnations, but with a taller body, revised wheel guards and exhausts, a new paint scheme and treaded tyres. In Series 9, Shunt's scoop was modified with smoother, wider edges in order to give extra protection to his sides, while his exhaust pipe has had a new decoration added.
Though House Robot weaknesses were never mentioned in earlier series, Shunt's was consistently listed as being "unable to self-right" in later series, despite this weakness being shared by all House Robots. This was of particular relevance to Shunt, as he often became a target for flipping and lifting robots, such as UK Champions Chaos 2 and Apollo, usually when they celebrated victory.
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Shunt was the first House Robot to be introduced in Robot Wars, as he was the first featured in the House Robot introductions. He was also described by Jeremy Clarkson as being the most powerful House Robot in this series.
- "If he were a car, he'd be a tank!"
- — Jeremy Clarkson on Shunt
Having not been used in The Gauntlet in Heat A, Shunt made his first appearance in the Sumo, the event he had been designed for. However, he did not get off to the best of starts, only succeeding in pushing one competitor (Shogun) off the ring. Two competitors managed to defeat him, with Roadblock managing to get under the House Robot and push him off the platform, and whilst fighting Nemesis, Shunt started well, but then drove too close to the edge, allowing Nemesis to push him off.
- "Oh, he’s not going to go again, surely? We thought Shunt was unbeatable and fearless! Go on Shunt, get out!"
- — Jonathan Pearce as Nemesis defeats Shunt
Of the other two competitors, Killertron managed to survive the whole minute, and stock robot Grunt drove off the ring deliberately because stock robots were not allowed to progress past the Trial stage.
Throughout the series, a running joke was that Jeremy Clarkson would talk about the House Robots as if they were alive, and “interact” with them. For example, whilst describing Shunt’s pushing power before the Sumo trial, Shunt started rocking back and forth, as if excited, to which Clarkson told him “Yes, alright, we’re very impressed. Stop it! Sit still! Thank you!”. After Nemesis defeated Shunt, Jeremy Clarkson berated the team for defeating “his friend”.
- "This is getting to be a habit, everybody’s killing my mate! I hate you, I hate you for winning that!"
- — Jeremy Clarkson to Team Nemesis
Shunt’s axe was quite weak in this series, notably only denting the top of Plunderbird 1. However, it did prove effective in pinning robots down and allowing him to drag them, which it did to robots such as Mortis and Torque of the Devil. The axe had two heads, a bladed one and a spiked one, and the axe could be turned around.
In Heat B, Shunt was used in the Gauntlet stage for the first time, and ended three of the competitors runs. During Scrapper’s run, Shunt chased it as it took the maze and pinned it against the wall, ending its run. During Mortis’ run, Shunt axed it, pulled it back, and held it for the rest of the run. Uglybot got stuck on the arena railings after driving off the turntable at the wrong moment, and Shunt pinned it up against the railings, preventing Uglybot from making any progress down the course, resulting in its elimination.
- "Shunt is doing his job there, he's certainly earning his engine oil tonight!"
- — Jonathan Pearce as Shunt pins Uglybot
During Detonator's run, Detonator got its spikes stuck on the turntable as it tried to get out, and Shunt came in to push it, which actually freed Detonator. Shunt rammed Detonator, which actually pushed it past Sergeant Bash. However, Detonator was stuck facing the top railings. Shunt gave it another push, turning it forwards, allowing it to move just a little further, thus surpassing Uglybot and progressing. Shunt appeared to stop as Detonator moved past.
- Jeremy Clarkson: "...Most people hate the robots, the House ones, but you must love them, yeah?"
- Clare Greenaway: "Yeah, I do now!"
- — After Detonator’s run
Shunt was used in the British Bulldog Trial in the same heat, along with the three other House Robots. It briefly blocked Scrapper, but Scrapper managed to reverse past it. It blocked Leighbot for a time, first pinning it against Dead Metal, then pushing it against one of the pyramids. However, after Shunt backed off for another attack, Leighbot was able to pass through.
In the Heat Final, Shunt was the one to immobilise Mortis. Mortis had Recyclopse on top of it and rammed it into the corner. However, this left it struggling to get off the side bars. Shunt came in and pushed Mortis so one of its tracks was hanging over the side bars, leaving it trapped. Shunt took advantage, axing it before time ran out.
In Heat C, Shunt dominated the House Robot route of the Gauntlet. He ended the runs of Cruella, which he pushed it against the pyramid, and Plunderbird 1, which he forced onto a grille, causing it to be eliminated. However, during WYSIWYG’s run, WYSIWYG became stuck on the ramp, and whilst pushing it off, Shunt got itself stuck
- Jeremy Clarkson: "...you actually managed to get a House Robot stuck, which is an all-time first!"
- Michelle Wheeley: "Yeah, it felt pretty good, actually!"
- — After WYSIWYG’s run
Dead Metal had to push Shunt off the ramp, also pushing WYSIWYG off the ramp as it did so. As Shunt approached it at the end of the run, WYSIWYG darted forwards, straight onto a grille.
After this Heat, Shunt would not be used in the Gauntlet again in the last three episodes.
During the battle between Dreadnaut and Wedgehog in the same heat, Dreadnaut got its fork stuck under Wedgehog as it tried to push it onto the grille. Shunt came in to try and separate the two, but failed to do so, and Matilda had to push the two competitors away from the grille. He also started pushing Robot the Bruce after it defeated Wedgehog in the Heat Final.
- "All right Shunt, quieten down, quieten down, you did very well."
- — Jeremy Clarkson after the battle
In Heat E, Shunt and the other House Robots were obstacles in the Labyrinth trial. Shunt was down towards the end of the course, and prevented Bodyhammer from reaching the end, blocking it with the help of Sergeant Bash.
In the Arena stage battle between Bodyhammer and Torque of the Devil, Torque of the Devil was pushed onto the side bars by Bodyhammer, leaving it stuck. Shunt used its axe to pull Torque of the Devil off the side bars, allowing it to continue fighting.
- "Look at that! They’ve pulled it out of trouble, and put it back in the arena! You’re not supposed to do that House Robots!"
- — Jonathan Pearce
In the Heat Final, after Bodyhammer became immobilised on a grille (which had been previously deemed a legitimate knock out win for robots like Bugs and Wedgehog) Shunt pushed Bodyhammer free, despite REALI-T ramming into him in an attempt to stop him.
- "No, you don't take on Shunt, you take on Bodyhammer! Bodyhammer's off that grille, given a little bit of a Shunt of assistance."
- — Jonathan Pearce
Shunt accidentally immobilised himself, as he could not get off, and inn trying to prevent Bodyhammer's escape, REALI-T broke a wheel on the grilles and went on to lose the battle after getting stuck on the side bars. This event was notable in that even the House Robots were unable to drive on the grilles.
- "Who could forget the ferocity of Shunt? Capable of cleaving all opponents in two with the deadliest of axes!"
- — Jonathan Pearce introduces Shunt during the House Robot introduction
Shunt’s axe was much more powerful than the previous series, and could be fired at a faster rate than in any other series. It was able to puncture robots for the first time, Chaos being the first robot it punctured, during the Heat Final of Heat B.
Amongst the most notable damage caused by Shunt’s axe in this series were the holes in Ron’s top during its Gauntlet run, the many holes in the top of Forklift during the Reserve Rumble, and the row of holes in Panic Attack’s top during its Gauntlet run.
- "Since when have House Robots had machine guns?"
- — Kevin Pritchard on the holes
Shunt’s operator, Malcolm James, would describe this as Shunt’s proudest moment in an interview in the original Robot Wars Magazine, though this would later be overshadowed by the attack on Hypno-Disc in Series 4. This incident would also begin a long running grudge between Shunt and the competitor, which would last until Panic Attack's final appearance in the All Stars of Series 7
Shunt’s bucket scoop, static in Series 1, was modified so it could lift robots. This helped it to push robots around, such as Milly-Ann Bug in the Gauntlet, and also turn robots over, including Havoc in the Heat Final of Heat L. Most notably, during the Internet Insurrection, Shunt used its scoop to lift the immobile Killerhurtz up, drag it to the top of the arena, then push it forward, flipping it over, then flip it onto the flame pit. However, during Oblivion’s Gauntlet run, Oblivion was able to take advantage of the scoop, as Shunt tried to lift it, Oblivion slipped off, and got under the scoop. This caused Shunt to lift itself up onto Oblivion.
Shunt’s first appearance in the Series, having not been used in the Gauntlet or Trial of Heat A, and not playing a part in the first Heat Semi-Final, was during the battle between Demolition Demon and Victor. After Victor broke down, Shunt came out of the PPZ, started axing Demolition Demon, and flipped it over. Demolition Demon was through regardless.
Throughout the series, Shunt was used in the Gauntlet, and proved a formidable obstacle. It singlehandedly ended the runs of Milly-Ann Bug, pushing it against the wall, then lifting and axing it, and Talos, pushing it into the pit after Dead Metal reversed in, axing the beaten competitor for good measure. When Mortis attacked Matilda after completing the Gauntlet, Shunt forced it into the pit.
Shunt particularly shone in the Gauntlet stage during the Semi-Finals. During Mortis’ run, Shunt held up the see-saw, causing it to land onto the fence and fall over. It blocked Mace and pitted it, and pushed Plunderbird 2 all the way to the start, leading to its elimination. During Behemoth’s run, Shunt blocked the see-saw as Behemoth crossed it. After Behemoth crossed the see-saw, it tried lifting Shunt, but with help from Matilda, Shunt blocked it, then axed it and lifted it over.
In Heat E, Shunt was used in the King of the Castle Trial, but had steering problems. On its first run, it struggled to get off the ramp, getting stuck on the sides after turning too early on the top. It took Shunt five attempts to straighten itself up and reach the platform to aid Dead Metal against Killertron, as it kept reversing into the other side wall. During ORAC’s run, Shunt made the same mistake again, turning too early as it went up the ramp and getting stuck on the side. It drove forwards, into the other wall, then reversed, falling off the ramp, leaving Matilda to fight ORAC alone.
- "Dreadful driving!"
- — Jonathan Pearce as Shunt reversed off
It briefly became stuck on the wall during the runs of Schumey and Spin Doctor, but corrected itself and got onto the platform each time, but during Spin Doctor’s run, it drove too close to the edge, and when it turned around, it span itself off the platform. It did manage to push off Technophobic off with the help of Matilda, but when King of the Castle returned in Heat K, Shunt was not used.
In Heat F, Shunt was used in the Sumo trial again, however it fared little better than it had done in Series 1. It nearly pushed off Panic Attack, but Panic Attack managed to turn and drive forwards before it could be pushed off, and as Shunt turned, it reversed off the platform.
- "He gave us one in the eye last round, but this time he took it, big time!"
- — Kevin Pritchard
Corporal Punishment was also victorious against the House Robot, being able to get under Shunt and pushed it to the edge, where it span itself off
- "One wonders how much punishment Shunt can take now, having been tipped off twice!"
- — Jonathan Pearce
Disruptor was able to use its wedge shape to get under Shunt and hold it to survive. Shunt did defeat Whirling Dervish and Ron, knocking the latter off in less than five seconds, but when Sumo was used again in Heat L, Dead Metal was used instead.
Shunt had a number of notable moments during battles throughout the series. In Heat B, during the battle between Chaos and Wheelosaurus, it rammed Wheelosaurus against the saws with the help of Matilda and pinned it there, axing it for most of the battle. This was suggested by Jonathan Pearce as being revenge for Wheelosaurus' attack on Sergeant Bash earlier in the Heat.
- "This is carnage! They’re after blood and oil!"
- — Jonathan Pearce as the House Robots attack Wheelosaurus
In Heat L, in the Heat Final between Haardvark and Havoc, Shunt flipped Havoc onto its side using its scoop after it was pushed into the PPZ, sending Haardvark through to the Semi-Finals.
Shunt helped Cassius defeat reigning champions Roadblock in the Grand Final. Shunt had Roadblock pinned against the wall and was lifting it up with the scoop, allowing Cassius to easily get under the champions, and as Cassius flipped Roadblock against the wall, Shunt helped by holding Roadblock up with its scoop.
Perhaps Shunt’s most notable battle in the whole series was the Reserve Rumble, where it axed and pitted Lateral Thought, axed a number of holes in the top of Forklift, then axed Bumblebot as Dead Metal held it.
However, Shunt was the victim of some attacks by competitors across the series. In its Gauntlet run, Razer managed to push Shunt to the end zone and crush into its side.
- "It was great to see the BBC roboteers come scurrying out afterwards to see what this new competitor had done to their beloved machine!"
- — The Razer website
Shunt would get back at Razer later in the Heat though; axing its base after it broke down and was flipped over by Matilda.
During Killertron’s Gauntlet run, after Shunt blocked Killertron, Killertron swung its axe into the House Robot, puncturing the top and dislodging it as it pulled the axe out.
- "Pickaxe to pickaxe, and look at the damage created here by Killertron."
- — Jonathan Pearce as Killertron punctures Shunt
The two continued swapping axe blows for the rest of the run.
During the Super Heavyweight Championship, Shunt was lifted up by the forklift of Berserk, then pushed into the wall by the competitor. Sir Killalot had to come in to intervene, separating the two and dragging Berserk away.
This series also saw the first of a number of amusing attacks by Shunt on decorations from the competitors, as it pushed Hard Cheese’s rat mascot Verminator onto the flame pit during the Robot Wars: The Second Wars/Middleweight Championship.
- "Shunt: a power-packed robot capable of dragging a fully-laden Land Rover, with its hydraulic lift at the front and the ability to cleave all opponents in two with a pneumatically-driven axe, which strikes with over 500 kilograms of pressure per square centimetre!"
- — Jonathan Pearce introduces Shunt during the House Robot introduction
As this series dropped the Gauntlet and Trials from the main competition, the House Robots, Shunt included, were given a redesign. Although still largely focused on its strength and pushing abilities, Shunt's axe was enlarged significantly and tipped with a diamond-edged blade, allowing it to puncture all but the hardest of armours
Shunt’s axe was much more powerful in Series 3, piercing almost every robot it was fired at. The first robot in this series Shunt used its axe on was Brimhur in Heat A. Notable damage done by the axe in this series included; puncturing the baseplate of Shark Attack in a moment later used in the show's intro sequence, the seven punctures in Flipper after it broke down, causing more than ten punctures in Bulldog Breed, after it was pushed into the CPZ by Robopig, breaking the drive chain on the bottom of X-Terminator after Panic Attack flipped it over, axing the controller of All Torque during its battle with Thing 2, causing it to become immobilised, and destroying Anorakaphobia during the walker battles.
- "Let’s see if it did cause any damage, NO! 3 millimetre thick steel with shatter-proof aluminium polycarbonate on the top of Blade, and it’s paid off, the design. No damage whatsoever!"
- — Jonathan Pearce as Blade survives an axe blow from Shunt
Sometimes the axe became stuck in competitors. On some occasions where this happened, it was able to use his scoop to lift the axe free, such as when he axed Suicidal Tendencies in the Heat Final of Heat A. In Heat P, Shunt axed Twn Trwn, and couldn’t free it. In the same Heat, when he axed Psychokiller, the axe became stuck, and Sir Killalot had to lift Psychokiller to separate the two.
Shunt was able to use its scoop and axe together to lift robots up and carry them, with it did to General Carnage and Bulldog Breed. Shunt’s attacks on decorations on the competitors continued, with Shunt axing the toy on top of Atlas and ripping it off.
The Pit was only open in the first two rounds, and usually Sir Killalot was the House Robot that pitted beaten competitors, but Shunt did push Sonic and Depoppesaurus Rex into the pit after they were beaten.
Easily Shunt’s most notable battle in this Series was the Middleweight Melee. First, it axed a couple of holes in Grinder after A-Kill pushed it into his CPZ. Then, after Ripper's Revenge was flipped over by an arena spike, Shunt axed the robot's baseplate, and dragged it onto an arena spike. It then rammed Tentoumushi against the arena wall, but Tentoumushi covered Shunt, blocking the radio signal so that Shunt could no longer move.
Another notable moment for Shunt in this series was the Round 2 battle between Panzer and Challenger 2. Panzer pitted Challenger 2, but became stuck underneath its opponent, so Sir Killalot and Shunt came out to separate them. Shunt axed Panzer, but did not puncture the top, so instead it axed the pitted Challenger 2.
- "Teehee, it’s House Robot glee! They were bored you see! Had to do something!"
- — Jonathan Pearce
Shunt and the other House Robots caused controversy in the Heat Final of Heat P. After Dreadnaut broke down, Shunt and the other House Robots started attacking the mobile Trident, with Shunt puncturing and crumpling the armour.
- "House Robots come from dark and dingy places. They do not like sleek and shiny machines, Steven Bebb!"
- — Jonathan Pearce as the House Robots attack
Across the series, Shunt was used to help free robots that were stuck. Examples of this include when it helped Abaddon from flame pit during its battle with Technophobic. It had to free Henry twice during its battle with Steg-O-Saw-Us, firstly when the competitor's spike became stuck in the floor, then again when the spike became stuck in the wall, though Shunt also axed Henry before it freed it from the wall. Shunt broke down in the centre of the arena after it pushed Death Warmed Up off the flame pit during its battle with Stealth.
Similarly, Shunt helped separate competitors when they became stuck together. Steg-O-Saw-Us became stuck on top of Napalm in the Heat Final of Heat G, so Shunt came in to separate them. King Buxton’s front spikes became stuck in Weld-Dor’s wheel hubs in their Round 2 battle, and Shunt separated the two. In the Semi-Final, Shunt uncoupled Gravedigger and Steg-O-Saw-Us when Steg-O-Saw-Us’ tail became stuck in Gravedigger.
Incidents such as these were the main reason for the introduction of Refbot in the following series.
- "It had been highlighted, there was a need for a robot that was seen as being unbiased, so when robots were tied together, or go stuck together … in the past the House Robots had gone in to free these robots. Now that was seen by viewers at home as being a bit confusing "Well, why is that robot being nice?", so we built Refbot."
- — Chris Reynolds on the creation of Refbot
On a number of occasions, when competitor robots tried attacking Shunt or the other House Robots, Shunt was able to fight back and bring them under control. In Heat E, after defeating Crocodilotron, Chaos 2 flipped Matilda, so Shunt pinned it against the wall with the help of Sgt. Bash.
In Heat H, having disposed of Ming, Mortis started attacking Matilda. With the help of Dead Metal, Shunt trapped Mortis and axed it, causing dents in its top, and flipped it over with the scoop. Mortis self-righted and attacked Dead Metal, but Shunt was able to push Mortis into the pit.
- "Take on the House Robots? Ha! We’ll get you Mortis boys! Look at that damage from Shunt!"
- — Jonathan Pearce
In the same heat, Gravedigger took on Matilda after defeating Mortis, but Matilda pushed back, and Shunt came to help, axing a couple of holes in Gravedigger.
- "...and Shunt’s coming in to help out a lady in distress. Some lady!"
- — Jonathan Pearce
King Buxton tried attacking Shunt after it had defeated Weld-Dor, but Shunt pinned it against the wall and axed it. Evil Weevil had no more success when it tried ramming Shunt after tipping over Triterobot, with Shunt retaliating by lifting and axing it. Rex Garrod made another attack on the House Robots after Cassius 2 had beaten Dundee, targeting Matilda, but Shunt pinned Cassius 2 against the wall and axed through the flipper. Facet managed to flip Matilda, but Shunt used its scoop to flip Matilda back, and pinned Facet against the wall with help from Sgt. Bash.
However, one competitor was able to take on Shunt and win. Having flipped Hypno-Disc to win the Grand Final, Chaos 2 celebrated by flipping Matilda over. Shunt rushed in, axing Chaos 2 and dragging it back, but Chaos 2 got free and flipped Shunt over.
- "...Shunt, trying to get away from Chaos 2, and why not? The champions want to beat everyone! Taking on Shunt and flipping Shunt over! So two of the House Robots done!"
- — Jonathan Pearce as Chaos 2 flips over Shunt
Shunt tried to right itself itself using the axe, but this merely left him stuck on his side, and also knocked off his exhaust stack. The top was also hanging loose, and as Chaos 2 rammed into it, the top fell off.
Shunt was used in the Pinball side event in this series, where it guarded one of the 50 Point targets on the sides of the arena. Notably, it ended the runs of Killerhurtz, lifting it up and axing it, and Dominator, pinning it against the wall and axing it.
There was also intended to be a Sumo side event, where Shunt would have fought robots which had not been selected to compete in the main competition, such as Medusa and Xenomorph. However, the event was cancelled due to a delay in filming caused by a behind-the-scenes accident.
In the International League Championship, filmed as part of Series 3 but broadcast at the start of Series 4, Shunt had one of his most memorable battles. First, Razer reversed into Shunt whilst fighting Techno-Lease, and Shunt lifted it up and flipped it over in the centre of the arena. Later in the same battle, Razer tried attacking Matilda, but Shunt pinned it against the wall. However, Razer managed to crumple Shunt’s bucket with the crusher, then crush a hole in it. Razer went back after Matilda, but Shunt lifted it against the wall.
- Ian Lewis: "We ate his shovel!"
- Phillipa Forrester: "You didn’t just eat it, you sculpted it like it was molten metal!"
- — In the post-battle interviews
Shunt had a number of notable moments in The First World Championship.
- "A lean, mean killing machine, Shunt takes to the international stage with his pneumatic lifting ram, hydraulic diamond-edged axe, and more speed and power than ever before!"
- — Jonathan Pearce introduces Shunt in The First World Championship video
Firstly, in the battle between Weld-Dor and Prometheus, it came out the separate the two competitor robots when Prometheus was stuck on Weld-Dor’s forks, but Prometheus became stuck on top of Weld-Dor. Shunt axed Prometheus in an attempt to knock it off, but this knocked its top loose. Prometheus fell onto the axe, and Shunt had to shake it loose.
In the battle between Razer and All Torque, Shunt broke down in its CPZ, not even moving when both robots went into his CPZ.
Shunt managed to pierce the gas canister of recently-crowned champion Chaos 2 when it axed the rear compartment during its battle with Killerhurtz. The flipper still worked however, which helped Shunt after its axe became stuck in Killerhurtz after axing it. A flip from Chaos 2 freed Killerhurtz from the axe.
In the Final, Razer pushed Behemoth against Shunt, and Shunt lifted its scoop, but lowered it on one of Behemoth’s srimech arms, raising himself up.
Shunt returned for Series 4 with a few improvements. This included new subtly redesigned fibreglass amour, to incorporate new drive motors and pneumatic valves, which would serve Shunt for the remainder of his original run, and a new front scoop, after the damage it took in the previous series.
Arguably the earliest and most deadly use of Shunt's axe was during the defeat of Hypno-Disc in the Grand Final. After being pushed into Shunt's CPZ, Hypno-Disc's spinning flywheel was struck by the axe and severely damaged. This not only cost Hypno-Disc the battle, but prevented it from participating in the playoff for third.
Shunt also participated in the Sumo Basho side competition, appearing in every run as the House Robot the competitors had to survive against. In contrast to earlier series, he was able to push thirteen opponents out of the ring, often in less than ten seconds. This included vengeance against Team Nemesis, with Diotoir falling in less than four seconds. However, Shunt was not able to reign completely supreme - X-Terminator and Behemoth survived the full time thanks to powerful drives and scoop fronts, and Panic Attack (which had attacked him a few times during the main competition) managed to win the Sumo Basho by pushing Shunt off. Though Panic Attack fell off itself, Shunt hit the ground first.
- "Shunt. The push me, pull you of house robots. All slam, bam, and robo glam."
- — Jonathan Pearce reviewing Shunt's statistics in one of his appearances in Extreme 1
With the weight limit being increased to 100kg for this series onwards, just 5kg lighter than him, Shunt began to lose his effectiveness. He caused very little notable damage this series and did get involved in some of the contestant robots' frustrations - most notably when he was nearly flipped out of the arena, then overturned completely, by Chaos 2, even though it had lost drive to one side.Shunt participated in the first House Robot Rebellion with Dead Metal and Matilda, against Stinger, Scorpion and Plunderbird 5. Tussling with Scorpion all the way through, he eventually pitted it and Plunderbird 5, but was unable to finish off Stinger despite assistance from Dead Metal and Matilda.
Shunt's attacks on the competitors decorations and mascots continued, including the destruction of Mega Morg's inflatable sheep during the vengeance battle with Plunderbird 5.
Shunt appeared the most out of the House Robots in the Fifth Wars, appearing in every episode except Heat G and as such had many notable moments in Series 5. The first was when X-Terminator took on Immortalis in the first round of Heat F. After Immortalis was immobilised, Shunt struck the white globe like ornament on its back, completely destroying it in a similar fashion to Major Tom's head the previous series.
- "He was there!"
- — Ian Watts' excuse for attacking Shunt
Shunt's third notable appearance this series came during a battle in Heat K, where Destruct-A-Bubble broke down against Rick. Shunt attacked Destruct-A-Bubble before it had been counted out, which resulted in a red card from Refbot. Shunt, apparently unhappy, tried to pursue Refbot.
Shunt returned for Series 6 with an improved pneumatics system and a new blade for his axe. The blade was no longer "diamond edged" as had been often boasted in previous series. Once again, Shunt did not have a great deal of involvement during this series. However, he bore the brunt of one of the few House Robot attacks in this series, where Firestorm 4 got underneath and turned him onto his side following its victory over X-Terminator in the Heat Final of Heat B. Firestorm 4 then drove him round the arena a few times before overturning him.
Fittingly, Shunt was able to get some revenge on Panic Attack, dragging it to the Floor Flipper and then the Drop Zone in Heat I.
There was also a somewhat comical moment during one of the heats, when Sir Chromalot drove into the arena and bumped into Shunt. Shunt seemed to take offence to this and chased Sir Chromalot to its starting spotlight.
Shunt appeared frequently during the second series of Robot Wars Extreme, but, just like in Series 6, notable moments involving him were genuinely limited. He was, nonetheless, involved in a rather controversial moment during the Iron Maidens tournament. During the second round, Behemoth had flipped Chompalot over and it appeared as though Chompalot would be unable to right itself, but Shunt came out of his CPZ and flipped the dragon-based robot back onto its wheels. Later, Shunt clashed with Behemoth after it drove into a CPZ. With Chompalot holding it in place, Shunt axed through Behemoth's top, eventually knocking its link out. As the House Robots are not meant to "help" an immobilised robot unless it is stuck on an arena hazard or the arena wall, Shunt's actions were criticised by the Behemoth team in particular after the battle.
In an earlier episode, the Robot Rampage, Shunt was flipped by the Floor Flipper in the first round of the Middleweight championship when he drove onto it just as Doom Too and Mammoth were thrown by it.
Although Shunt was still able to , such as axing a hole in Herbinator, in the seventh series, Shunt had to bear the brunt of several competitor attacks, more so than any of the other House Robots. Ceros, Hydra and Raging Knightmare all flipped him over during the course of the series (a clip from his on-board camera had been playing as Raging Knightmare flipped him) and Ripper flipped him onto Sir Killalot where he got stuck. During the match between Big Nipper and Jackson Wallop in Heat B, Shunt was struck by the spinning blade of Jackson Wallop which put a massive hole in Shunt's scoop. The hole was never repaired and can even still be seen during the Meet the House Robots preview episode for the 2016 series.
The most notable attacks on Shunt came during Heat D and the All-Stars special. During the heat final of the fourth heat, Lightning had broken down after constant flipping by Gravity. The House Robots moved in to attack Lightning as Refbot counted it out, when Gravity caught Shunt unaware and flipped him over. Shunt landed heavily on his top end and various parts, including his camera, broke off. During the first round of the All-Stars, all four robots ignored each other and attacked the house robots, Shunt being their first victim. He was easily flipped over by Firestorm, whereupon Bigger Brother tried to flip him out of the arena, with no success.
Rather fittingly, as the first House Robot to be introduced, Shunt also appeared in the Grand Final of the World Championships, the last episode of Robot Wars' original run. During the match, Supernova stacked itself against the arena wall. As both the Storm 2 team and the House Roboteers believed that Storm 2 had won, Shunt stacked it against the arena side wall for fun. This lead to a rather controversial finish (see Storm 2/Controversy), but Storm 2 was given the win anyway.
- "Shunt. The arena bruiser, perfectly equipped for pushing people around. If that's not enough his titanium tipped axe lands with a tonne of force, right on top of your cherished shiny robots head."
- — Robot Wars Facebook
Shunt was shown in the third teaser. He was enlarged and upgraded to meet the standards of modern competitors, as with the other returning House Robots, and features a faster and more powerful axe and scoop as well as a revised design. Shunt also takes a role similar to Shove where it can help clean up the debris, as noted after Chompalot was knocked out in its Head to Head.
In Heat 5, Shunt, along with Ironside3, were responsible for immobilising Thermidor 2 on one side. After it was pushed into the CPZ by Chompalot, Shunt's axe penetrated Thermidor 2's wheel, putting it out of the competition. Shunt would later attack the battered Chompalot in the next round, contributing towards its eventual battery fire and withdrawal from the series.
In the Grand Final, Shunt played a large role, featuring in seven out of the nine battles, and striking blows on Thor, Pulsar and Carbide at various points with his axe as well as stacking Carbide against the wall during its Head to Head against TR2. Shunt was also seen in the final, causing damage to both Carbide and Apollo throughout the battle - Apollo even intentionally received a blow from Shunt's axe in order to flatten its flipper back down.
Battle of the StarsEdit
In Episode 1, Shunt rammed Interstellar: MML into the wall and axed its flipper after it became immobilised by Arena Cleaner during its first Head-to-Head battle. Later on, he axed and pinned Arena Cleaner against the wall after the latter had its wheels sliced by The Cat, only to have his right-hand wheel-guard and rear plough badly damaged by Arena Cleaner following its victory over JAR. This appeared to immobilise Shunt.
In Episode 2, Shunt flipped Robo Savage over into a CPZ following its Head-to-Head defeat to Kadeena Machina. When both robots fought each other again for the Grand Final, he axed Robo Savage just as it was being picked up by Sir Killalot following its immobilisation.
Shunt appeared in a teaser trailer for Series 9, uploaded on 10th February 2017. The teaser showed him and the other House Robots destroying household appliances, with Taylor Swift's "I Knew You Were Trouble" playing in the background.
- "He's an axe to the max - it's the titanium tipped axe of Shunt!"
- — Jonathan Pearce introduces Shunt before his first appearance in Series 9
In Heat 1, Shunt became the first Rogue House Robot in the Head-To-Head between Terrorhurtz and Sabretooth, attacking Terrorhurtz and damaging its firing ram and leading to the robot being counted out after Sabretooth pressed the Arena Tyre. He also made the most appearances of the House Robots in Episode 1, playing a part in 6 battles. Other notable moments for Shunt from the first episode included tossing over Sabretooth in its Group Battle involving TMHWK, Crank-E and Aftershock, while later in the episode, an altercation with Aftershock in the CPZ sent sparks flying from the House Robot's front scoop.
In Heat 2, during the group battle between Cherub, Draven, PP3D and Push to Exit, Shunt was responsible for knocking Draven out completely, penetrating the armour and hitting the receiver of Draven. Later in the episode, during a head to head match between Behemoth and PP3D, Shunt went "rogue" after Behemoth triggered the switch. Shunt slammed PP3D around, which soon caused it to burst into sparks, but in turn Shunt was damaged by PP3D's blade.
In Heat 3, Shunt made two appearances. He had no involvement in the group battle between Thor, Concussion, Tauron and Chimera2, but during the Head-to-Head battle between M.R. Speed Squared and Heavy Metal, Shunt's axe punched straight through the top armour of M.R. Speed Squared and barged it into the arena wall.
Shunt had a very busy Heat 4 as he made an appearance in every battle bar one. Shunt's most notable moment came during the first Head-to-Head battle of the episode between Frostbite and Supernova, as he slammed through the top armour of the immobile Frostbite before pulling it clean off. He also axed Wyrm and dented the top of Supernova's armour in their Head-to-Head battles against Ironside3.
Shunt's appearances in Heat 5 were limited, as he was being repaired after suffering damage from Arena Cleaner in the previous day of filming. Shunt filmed a Grandstand view of Smash damaging the Arena wall after an attack by Carbide in their Head-to-Head.
Shunt appeared in 6 battles in the Grand Final, and used his axed on the beaten Concussion during the second Group Battle, with Ironside3 also forced to bear the brunt of the House Robot's weapon while it fought Carbide in the Head-to-Head stage.
Shunt also appeared in the championship deciding fight between Carbide and Eruption, and was forced to help Sir Killalot out after Carbide attacked the House Robot. Shunt used his bulldozer scoop and axe to attack the new champion, and drove it against the arena side gate.
Shunt made three appearances in the opening heat of Series 10 - starring in the first fight of the series between Behemoth, Donald Thump, and Sabretooth, as well as being present for the first occurrence of the new arena hazard, Fog of War. In terms of in-battle action, Shunt tussled with Sabretooth on more than one occasion, with the House Robot axing and ramming the yellow and black machine when it was in the CPZ during battles against Apocalypse and The Swarm.
- "Goodness me, they'll need a day off after this - it's sympathetic Shunt against cuddly Killalot."
- — Jonathan Pearce, as the two House Robots appear yet again in Heat 2
With an abundance of spinners in Heat 2, Shunt was involved in seven out of the eight battles in the episode. His most notable involvements came in the Group Battle between Carbide, Gabriel 2, and Big Nipper, with the House Robot called into Rogue House Robot mode, as well as taking damage on his front scoop from Carbide.
Shunt was allowed to take more of a backseat in Heat 3 - only appearing three times. Despite little in terms of notable moments, Shunt was present for the shortest fight in Robot Wars history between Rapid and Track-tion, with the former achieving an Out of the Arena flip in just 00:05.6 seconds.
Shunt played a crucial role in the Heat Final of Heat 4 between Nuts 2 and Concussion. The inverted Concussion strayed too close to Shunt, which disabled the spinning drum weapon with a single blow. Concussion's team wanted Shunt to turn their robot back over, but the House Robot did not comply - damaging it further with his axe.
Heat 5's second Group Battle saw Shunt cause damage to the underside of Push to Exit with two hits from his axe, before sliding it onto the inactive Pit of Oblivion. The House Robot's second appearance in the Heat saw his axe come into play again, but after a rally of hits on the immobile Hobgoblin, Shunt took damage himself - with his axe point shattering off after a direct hit to Hobgoblin's egg-beater weapon. As revenge, Shunt toppled Hobgoblin over, before charging Coyote against the arena wall following an attack on the House Robot after cease, from Jamie McHarg's machine.
Shunt's most damaging moment in the Grand Final came during the 10 Robot Rumble, as he charged into Apollo and axed the ex-champions after being called into Rogue House Robot mode. Despite offering little with his weaponry after this, Shunt still made five more appearances, which also included the championship fight between Carbide and Eruption. This meant that Shunt continued his record of appearing in the title fight for every series of the reboot.
Shunt also appeared in the World Series. In Episode 1, Shunt carried out tradition on a returning Diotoir by setting it on fire after it was immobilised by Terrorhurtz. Shunt was also a Rogue House Robot during the fight between Rabid M8 and Gabriel 2 - with the House Robot slamming the already limping Gabriel 2 against the arena wall.
Just like in Episode 1, Shunt appeared in the second Tag Team battle during Episode 2 - a battle where it axed right through Terror Turtle's fibreglass shell after it was immobilised. Shunt's axe later suffered damage itself though, as the weapon shaft of the House Robot snapped following a hit on Eruption during its captains' battle against Cathadh.
Shunt made numerous appearances in both series of Robot Wars: Extreme Warriors and the one-off series of Nickelodeon Robot Wars. He is the only original House Robot to compete in all three Robot Rebellions that took place in Extreme Warriors and the Nickelodeon series. In the first Rebellion, held in Extreme Warriors Season 1, he spent a majority of the fight attacking Tut Tut but towards the end ran out of power and was beaten into submission by Tricerabot. The damage he had taken proved to be quite severe, putting him out of commission for some time.
He had better luck in the Season 2 Robot Rebellion against Snake Bite and Snookums where he used his axe on Snake Bite before being stabbed in the side by Snookums' sword. Sir Killalot came in to the arena and forcefully separated Snookums from Shunt who was nearly overturned. Shunt managed to survive to the end of the match after Snookums was crushed by an organ and Snake Bite was pitted.
In the Nickelodeon Robot Rebellion, Shunt was sent flying by the spinning maces of Humdrum but managed to recover. He then spent much of the fight attacking Squirmin Vermin, lifting it up into the air until Sir Killalot once again came in and threw Squirmin Vermin out of the arena and sent Humdrum to the Drop Zone.
Appearances in MerchandiseEdit
- Shunt/Robot Wars: Metal Mayhem
- Shunt/Robot Wars: Arenas of Destruction
- Shunt/Robot Wars: Advanced Destruction
- Shunt/Robot Wars: Extreme Destruction (GBA)
- Shunt/Robot Wars: Extreme Destruction (PC/Xbox)
Outside Robot WarsEdit
On July 21st, 2016, Shunt and the rest of the Series 8 house robots appeared on BBC's The One Show, to promote the new series of Robot Wars. They battled three remote controlled cars piloted by the cast of The Rebel. Sir Killalot flattened all three cars, and won the battle for the house robots.
Both Shunt and Matilda appeared in the 6th March 2017 edition of The One Show along with Dara Ó Briain, in order to promote Series 9.
- In every episode of Robot Wars Extreme: Series 1, Robot Wars: The Fifth Wars, Robot Wars: Extreme Warriors, Nickelodeon Robot Wars, Dutch Robot Wars: Series 1 and German Robot Wars, Shunt is seen in the corner in a battle between Falcon and Shuriken, visible behind the boards showing the list of events/rounds in each episode of the aforementioned series.
- During the later stage of filming for Series 8, the version of Shunt used in the original run of the series was put on display in the waiting tent.
- Shunt's light weight compared with the other House Robots in the original run of the series made him a common target for competitors, especially flippers. Shunt has notably been flipped over more times than any other House Robot, having suffered from this misfortune 11 times.
- Shunt is the only House Robot from the show's original run that is lighter than the new maximum heavyweight limit (per Series 8-10).
- ↑ Robot Wars: Build Your Own Robot, p.24
- ↑ Robot Wars Technical Manual
- ↑ Robot Wars Magazine Issue 4
- ↑ Series 2 report, the Razer website (archived)
- ↑ Series 9 Teaser Trailer, featuring the House Robots.