DC Animated Universe

"West Bound" is the sixth episode of the first season of The Zeta Project. It first aired on March 10, 2001. Zee and Ro find themselves trapped on a high-speed hovertrain, whose powerful transformers interfere with Zee's morphing abilities. And to make matters worse, they're stuck on the train with Agent West.


Act one[]

Zee and Ro test hairstyles

Zee lets Ro try out new hairstyles.

At the Amber Waves Motel in Perryville, Kansas, Zee is using his hologram generating ability to let Ro try out different hairstyles. Zeta, not understanding the purpose of the "game", asks Ro why she's making him continue if she doesn't even like any of the options. "It's called 'relaxing,'" replies Ro. "You're always so wound up. You've gotta stop and smell the roses." Of course, being a synthoid, Zeta fails to understand the expression. Changing his own hairstyle, Zee looks in the mirror and says he still doesn't get it.

Right down the hall, Agent Bennet have arrived with Agents Lee, Rush, and West. As Rush, Lee, and Bennet make their way up the corridor, West makes sure to pocket a travel shampoo from an unattended cart by the elevator. Bumping into the housekeeping employee as she exits the nearby room, West covers her mouth and shushes her. Unfortunately for the agent, Zeta's keen sense of hearing picked up the sound of the woman's muffled yell. So, when West shouts down the hallway to apologize to his superior, Zee and Ro now have all the confirmation they need that the NSA has arrived.

Making a quick escape, Zeta launches his arm towards a nearby blimp before reaching his other arm back to retrieve Ro. Busting down the door, NSA agents Bennet, Lee, and Rush find the room vacant. With the windows open, Lee calls for her fellow agents to search for clues to their targets escape. Met with no clues but the aforementioned blimp, Agent West finally joins the group and suggests someone must have tipped off Zee and Ro ahead of time. Quickly, the agents make break for outside in hopes of catching the Synthoid and his accomplice.

Zeta and Ro head to Fenton City

Zee and Ro find a departing train to Fenton City.

Finally clear of their pursuers, Zeta and Ro drop their disguises as a beach ball and beach goer. Directing the blimp towards Perryville Hover-Rail, Zee and Ro disembark on the train stations roof. With the duo not having attended to the blimp's flight trajectory, the now pilotless dirigible knocks over the Perryville sign, alerting the NSA agents. Having the head start, the fugitives quickly board the Bullet headed towards Fenton City.

Making their way to the front doors of the hover-rail station, Bennet orders the agents to all split up to check every platform. Unfortunately for the team at large, Agent West just so happens to be the one to locate Zee and Ro. He boards the hover rail as the door is closing and begins scanning the passengers. As the hover-rail begins to move forward, the NSA agent is tossed from his feet, and his holo-viewers are flung underneath a passenger's seat. At that moment, Bennet calls to check in on West, who lets his superior know the situation. The agent tells his boss that he'll stop the train, but Bennet points out that he's already too far gone from the station. Bennet decides that the rest of the team will rendezvous at the trains stopping point, but not knowing where that is West hangs up the call intent on catching Zeta himself.

Believing they've escaped capture, Ro takes a seat in a passenger car and tells Zee that he can "chill". Zeta insists that he should probably keep on the lookout just in case. Ro still tries to convince him to enjoy the scenery, and once again suggesting he stops to smell the roses. Zee still remains confused, "but that's wheat." As the duo discuss, Agent West enters the car to conduct his search. Zeta assumes another disguise but as the hover rail passes a set of transformers, his hologram turns into West. Noticing that he now has a double, the real West makes chase.

Act two[]

As Zeta and Ro run from their pursuer, they find brief respite in an empty corridor between cars. Changing back to his typical form, Zee tells his companion he's just as confused as her regarding his sudden transformation into West. "Something's interfering with my holomorphic processors." As West finally begins to catch up, the duo make their way into a dining car and disguise themselves. West, having lost his holo-viewers, resorts to poking people to check if they're solid. As he makes his way through the train car, the agent eventually pokes the wrong person, and angers a much burlier man by poking his girlfriend hard enough her fork flings from her hand while eating.

Watching Agent West as he's flung to the floor, Ro orders refreshments from the dining car staff. As the waiter leaves, Zee grabs a rose from the table, places it above his head, and sniffs. Explaining that his olfactory sensors are on top of his head, Zeta puts the rose through his holographic nose just as the waiter returns. Ro informs her Synthoid partner that it's a fake, and throws it away promising to find him a real one. Already freaked out by what he just witnessed, the waiter becomes even more panicked when the Bullet passes through another pair of transformers, making Zee take his appearance. Ro tells Zeta that he needs to do something about this, but as he gets up from his seat, his hologram is no longer projected on Ro, compounding the real waiter's panic even more. Still struggling with the man who flung him, West notices the situation and runs towards the fugitives, only to slam into the waiter.

Meanwhile, the NSA hover van arrives at the Perryville Airport, where it boards a much larger vessel and heads towards Fenton City. Fourteen minutes from arrival, Agent Lee informs Bennnet that she contacted the field office in Fenton, who assured her they'll have backup at the hover-rail station when the agents arrive. Bennet asks for a list of available weapons on board, and Lee gives him a manifest including sonic destabilizer, electrostatic netting, and EMT pulse grenades. Assuring her superior that any of these weapons should be able to bring Zeta down, Bennet expresses he's considering how to punish Agent West.

Back on the Bullet, Zee and Ro have made their way to the sleeping car. Finding an unoccupied room, Zeta stares out the window and comes to the realization that the flux of the high-energy transformers powering the train are causing a crossover between his optical and holomorphic centers. Outside, Agent West knocks on doors to ask passengers if they've seen his target. One points out how ridiculous the ask is, given that the agent mentioned the synthoid could look like anyone. Realizing the man is right, West pokes him just to be sure. Finally, the agent knocks on Zee and Ro's door. Hoping to avoid detection, Ro quickly hides in the bathroom as the train passes another set of transformers, turning Zeta into a woman with a shower hat with a towel. Shocked and embarrassed, West vacates the room.

As Ro comes out of hiding, she tries to piece together where Zeta saw this woman. He points outside, suggesting that it must have been someone in a window of the nearby neighborhood they were passing. Not having gone far, Agent West overhears their voices and barges in again. Rushing into the room. the NSA agent trips over the flip-out bed, landing on the mattress. Swiftly, Zeta kicks the bed into its upright position and welds it shut as West loudly protests. "You can't do this! I'm a government employee!" Ro compliments her friend on his quick thinking, but before they have time to celebrate West begins shooting wildly through the bed, forcing them to flee once again.


Agent West finds Zee and Ro hiding in the baggage car.

Finally arriving at the end of the Bullet, Zeta and Ro find themselves in the baggage car. Hiding amongst the luggage, the duo's position is given away by a barking dog. Zeta reluctantly surrenders to West's glee. But as the trains passes through more transformers, Zeta's head changes into the dog's, frightening Agent West as he accidentally shoots the floor and falls unconscious. Zee checks to make sure the agent is alright but comes to find that his shot has blown the compartment's hover cells. With the car now unstable, Zee reveals that if he doesn't do something, the whole train will crash.

Act three[]

Enacting his plan to unhitch the luggage car, Zeta tells Ro to vacate and carries Agent West back to the sleeping car. The agent momentarily regains consciousness, only for Zeta to changes through his recently used forms, causing him to faint again. Laying West in the hallway floor, Zeta realizes he has to head for the roof, and tells Ro that if the NSA agent awakens, she should run until the two can meet up at the station in Fenton City.

Extending his claws, Zee rips through the side of the Bullet in order to access a ladder to the roof. As the train passes through a tunnel, the tear made by Zeta grows larger, further destabilizing the end car. Realizing they left the dog in the baggage car, Ro returns to free him. As Zee decouples the cars, the dog leaps to safety in the sleeping car. Noticing his friend trapped in the now loose baggage car, Zee extends his arm to her once again, but isn't quite able to reach. Grabbing the sides of the detached car at their closest points, Ro is able to use the synthoid's arms to swing back to safety. As Zeta finally let's go of the car, it tumbles off the side of a cliff and explodes. Though, now returned to safety, an emergency lock engages once again separating Zee and Ro.

Zeta aims for another train

Zeta aims to makes his escape by leaping towards a passing hover-rail.

Getting closer to Fenton City, the NSA plane begins to close in on the Bullet. Having witnessed the explosion, Bennet presumes that the car's demise was an extension of Zeta's programming to destroy. Dropping on the roof of the train, Bennet assures Zeta he has nowhere to run as Agent Lee corners the synthoid from behind. Radioing back to the plane, Bennet orders an electro-static net to be dropped on the fugitive infiltration unit. Noticing a passing hover-rail below, Zeta leaps down and makes his escape, just as both trains approach a tunnel. Bennet and Lee duck to avoid the ceiling as the plane takes drastic maneuvers to avoid a crash.

NSA agents approach the Bullet

NSA agents approach the Bullet at the train station in Fenton City.

Finally arriving at the Fenton Hover-Rail station, NSA agents begin to approach. Onboard, Agent West is still unconscious, sleep talking about his aims to one day become a regional director for the NSA, and one day maybe even Vice President. As the passengers disembark, the agents prepare their sonic destabilizers. Bennet and Lee hop down from the roof of the train, and Bennet orders the agents to locate the other train that just arrived, the Metropolitan. Headed to the other track, Lee locates West as he regains consciousness. Asking her fellow agent what happened, West tells her that last thing he knew, they were in the luggage car, and something exploded. Realizing the luggage car is gone, Lee asks how he got back to safety, but West is unable to recall.

As Ro leaves, the hover-rail station announcers calls out a final boarding call for the Upshot to Saskatchewan. Unsure of how Zeta intended on the tow meeting up post-separation, she notices the sign for Fenton Botanical Gardens. In the garden, she finds an old man shoving his head against the flowers. Both having assumed this was where the other would have gone, Ro realizes that this means they're beginning to think alike, a prospect she finds to be scary. Zee tells his friend that she was right, smelling roses is nice, and he suggests in the future that they should take more time to enjoy things.


  • Global warming, previously mentioned in Static Shock's "Blast From the Past", has gone on to have lasting repercussions in the DCAU's future, with Copperteen's sunblock ads giving the sun a menacing smirk and reading "Global Warming Burns. You Need Copperteen."
  • While Agent Lee may be correct in telling Bennet that any of the weapons on board the NSA hover bus should be able to take Zeta down, we've seen that it's not quite that simple. Specifically, Agent Lee and Agent West attempted to bring the synthoid down with sonic destabilizers in "Change of Heart," but were ultimately outsmarted.
  • Ro invokes "The Wonderful Wizard of Oz" yet again dubbing Zeta "tin man". She did so previously during the Ground Wire gag segment from "Change of Heart", and in act one of "Remote Control".

Background information[]

Home video releases[]

Production inconsistencies[]

  • When Zeta lifts Agent West in the baggage car, he's noticeably standing on top of the hole the agent shot into the floor.
  • When Agent Bennett confronts Zeta on the Bullet, his hair is momentarily miscolored orange.


Actor Role
Zeta / Zee Diedrich Bader
Rosalie "Ro" Rowan Julie Nathanson
Agent Bennet Kurtwood Smith
Agent West Michael Rosenbaum
Agent Lee Lauren Tom
Train Announcer (uncredited)
Frank Welker
Bully Boyfriend Tom Wilson