- "Disregarding a direct order from a commanding officer is punishable by death."
- —Freckles threatening Tucker in Can I Keep It?
Freckles was a Mantis-class military assault droid that was activated by Caboose, who later took him as a pet. Freckles first appeared in the Season 11 episode, S.O.S. and was later implemented into Caboose's assault rifle during Season 12. Freckles serves as a supporting character in the Chorus Trilogy, albeit with a somewhat antagonistic role in Season 11.
Role in Plot
During Season 11, after the Reds and Blues crash land in an unknown location, Caboose becomes depressed over Epsilon's departure and goes for a walk to better himself. However, he soon comes across a strange echo and discovers a large robot behind piles of debris. Excited upon finding the robot, Caboose successfully repairs it and introduces his new pet, named "Freckles," to the Reds and Blues, leaving them utterly stunned. Later, Wash and Tucker try to convince Caboose not to keep Freckles, but fail and Caboose teaches Freckles "tricks" before Simmons joins the Blue Team.
When Sarge attacks the Blues with the warthog, Freckles stops him, destroys the vehicle, and mistakenly promotes Caboose to the Blue Team's leader during an argument between Tucker and Wash. When Simmons tries to leave the team due to this, Freckles threatens to kill him for going AWOL, holding Simmons as his hostage. After Donut, Doc, and Lopez arrive at the canyon, in a failed attempt to rescue the others, the Blues return to base and are forced to follow Caboose's every command, in fear of Freckles.
Caboose soon has Freckles undergo various antics with him, including wearing a sombrero and a piggy back ride. That is until Washington apologizes to Caboose for not being a better friend to him, which results in Caboose returning the leadership position back to Wash and having Freckles listen to Wash from now on. Suddenly, a group of white armored soldiers attack Blue base, prompting Wash to order Freckles to eliminate them. After Freckles kills the soldiers, the Reds and Blues gather and soon meet Locus, as well as Felix. Felix is wounded by Locus, but defends the Reds and Blues. Wash then orders Freckles to kill Locus, but the latter disappears once Freckles opens fire.
Battle at Crash Site Bravo
After Felix explains that the group are on the planet Chorus, which is undergoing a civil war, they begin to fortify the canyon for an upcoming attack. However, Lopez 2.0, enraged by Sarge's stupidity, downloads himself into C.C. and betrays the group. Freckles stops Lopez 2.0/C.C. from killing the others before the Federal Army arrive, starting an intense battle, with Freckles fighting Lopez 2.0. During the battle, Freckles is greatly damaged by Lopez 2.0/C.C. before Donut interrupts their battle and saves Freckles, who lost most of his power in the process.
However, Simmons and Tucker are able to convert the crashed ship's remaining power supply into Freckles, reactivating him. Freckles then provides covering fire, allowing some of the Reds and Blues to get to the caves, but is heavily damaged in the process. Wash, having been injured and realizing they're being overwhelmed, orders Freckles to shake, prompting the latter to execute a powerful ground stomp. This action causes the tunnel entrance to collapse and seal off, allowing Caboose, Tucker, Simmons, Grif, and Felix to escape. When the others are taken by the Feds, Freckles refused to surrender, resulting in his destruction.
Luckily, Freckles' primary storage unit remained intact and was given to Wash at F.A.C. Outpost 37 by Locus, who in turn gave it to Caboose, much to his delight. However, it's later revealed that the storage unit contained a tracking device for the Space Pirates, who have been using it to track down the Reds and Blues. Epsilon quickly removes the tracker from Freckles' storage chip and the latter is moved into Caboose's assault rifle during a sneak attack on the mercenaries at Radio Jammer Station 1C. Able to utilize heat signatures, Freckles bypasses two mercenaries' cloaking devices and opens fire, killing one.
After the Blood Gulch Crew reveal the pirates' actions to the armies of Chorus, they form a truce and together declare war on the Chairman. As a result, Freckles was upgraded by Dr. Grey and given full control of the assault rifle, even gaining a feature to dispense confetti and emit a party noise whenever Caboose pulls the trigger, demonstrated first in Tourist Trap. While Caboose, Grey, Tucker and Sarge investigate a Charon Excavation Site, Freckles scans the area and detects no enemies, allowing them to study the nearby temple. After Tucker reactivates it, Carolina, Grey, and the Blues follow map coordinates it emitted and eventually arrive at a Jungle Temple, where they're ambushed by space pirates.
Luckily, Grey orders Freckles to run the command "Aimbot", prompting Freckles to rapidly fire and kill the pirates. Freckles continues to assist Caboose throughout the course of the war, killing numerous Space Pirates for him. After Doyle destroys Armonia in an act of self-sacrifice, the crew, along with Chorus' armies initiate an attack on the Communication Temple, where Freckles protects Caboose when Felix attempts to use him to kill Caboose. Freckles instead fires confetti and knocks Felix down, refusing to kill his master.
After the crew kill Felix and broadcast their message to the galaxy, Chairman Hargrove flies to Chorus in a final attempt to kill the planet's inhabitants. In response, the Reds and Blues infiltrate the Staff of Charon in order to stop the Chairman once and for all, where Freckles becomes jealous when Caboose compliments F.I.L.S.S.. Soon after, Caboose arms himself with Freckles when the Reds and Blues are trapped inside the Chairman's trophy room after his forces begin breaching into the room. As Caboose and the others ready themselves for the impending attack, Freckles too readies himself to assist the Reds and Blues.
After the Reds and Blues decide to live a quiet life, they transfer Freckles into a miniature mantis body. Soon after, they (except for Grif) leave Iris to search for the Blues and Reds. When they are captured, Grif leaves to go rescue them leaving Freckles behind on Iris. No one has yet returned to Iris to reclaim Freckles, effectively abandoning him. Although Loco mentioned Freckles in his last words before his death, having intended to give Caboose batteries for his pet robot.
Freckles, due to his programming, was originally serious toward everything and showed fierce loyalty to his master, Caboose. He's shown to not have an understanding of sarcasm and lacks empathy, as he took Wash's and Tucker's argument of having Caboose to be leader seriously and forced the Blue Team to uphold their 'duties' despite their reasons. However, due to his interactions with Caboose, he became a bit more caring, wanting to ensure what's best for the teams and spends a majority of his time playing with Caboose. This is best shown in Fire, where he takes several rockets meant for the others in order to save them and Caboose, which heavily damages him.
By Season 13, Freckles has undergone more social development in regards to communicating with others, and seems to have gained a bit of sarcasm as well as seen in Tourist Trap when he reacts to Sarge's comment about him with an "and I heard that."
Skills and Abilities
In his former Mantis husk, Freckles had several weapons attached to him that provided heavy artillery to the Blues. When he and Caboose played catch, he used his gun turret to hit the ball from a great distance quite accurately (though he nearly hit Simmons). He also had a missile launcher as well, whose missiles were strong enough to destroy the Reds' warthog in Long Live the King. Freckles used an advance targeting system for these weapons, which also allows him to identify a soldiers rank, affiliation, and level of threat.
After his AI was integrated into Caboose's Assault Rifle, he retains the ability to shoot even if someone is not holding him, as seen in Fed vs. New. He actually has full control over the safety. If someone tries to fire the weapon when Freckles doesn't wish to, the weapon discharges a burst of confetti and makes a sound comparable to a party streamer. This provides the rifle with an auto-targeting system
Due to the fact he's a war robot, Freckles has several abilities that aid him in combat. It's stated in Can I Keep It? that he has advanced camouflage and he's also shown to run quite quickly. Freckles is portrayed to be extremely strong, as he has enough force to shake the ground when ordered to "shake", which allowed some of the Reds and Blues to escape in Fire. Also, his exterior can take heavy fire and protect others before showing any sign of damage, as seen when he covers Caboose when the latter is blind. In rifle form, Freckles is just as deadly and now has the ability to perform thermal scans of enemy units and even shoot confetti whether his handler 'accidentally' pulls the trigger or the shooter is not Caboose. Freckles still retains his voice unit too, allowing the gun to 'speak'.
During Locus' attacks, Freckles kills several Federal Army soldiers in Neighborhood Watch and Fire with his attached weaponry. After being moved into Caboose's assault rifle, he manages to kill one of the mercenaries in a surprise attack and proceeds to rack up more Space Pirate kills from there. During the Battle of Armonia using the heat scanning abilities in conjunction with the Aimbot function, he was able to take out several Space Pirates trying to converge on the Armory.
- According to The No. 1 Movie in the Galaxy, Freckles wants to become a movie star. However, this coming from a PSA is considered non-canon.
- It's stated by several characters that Freckles was in the cargo on the UNSC Crashed Ship and was damaged during the crash landing.
- Freckles is mentioned in Fails of the Weak Volume 163 when Geoff says, "There's Freckles."
- Freckles is typically depicted as crouching when stationary, only rising into the Mantis's default standing position when entering a combat situation.
- Freckles is shown to scan an area of heat signatures (thermal scanner) installed by Dr. Grey.
- Freckles is programmed with an aim-bot function that automatically eliminates all hostile threats. Though it's not fully implemented, making it a 50/50 chance of working properly.
- Freckles plays a similar role to Sheila in Blood Gulch: they both function as the A.I-controlled vehicle for Blue Team, have their A.I downloaded into a different body (A pelican for Sheila and an assault rifle for Freckles), are friends of Caboose, and are both eventually abandoned by the team (Valhalla for Sheila, Iris for Freckles).
|Blue Team |
|Blood Gulch: Leonard L. Church · Epsilon · Lavernius Tucker (ε) · Michael J. Caboose (ε) · Tex (ε)|
Washington · Sheila · Butch Flowers · Andrew D. Kaboom (ε) · Junior · Kaikaina Grif · Freckles
|Desert Gulch: Mark Temple · Buckey · Loco|
|Coloblind: Wynn · Squatch · Deuce|
|Other: Jimmy · Jacob J. Jenkins · Mickey · Miller · Jones · Blue Grunt Leader · Phil (Falcon)|
|Vehicles: M808V Main Battle Tank · Chopper|
|Freelancer A.I.: Α · B (ε) · Γ · Δ · Ε · Η · Θ · I · Σ · Ω · F.I.L.S.S.· V.I.C. (ε)|
|Other A.I.: Lopez the Heavy (ε) · Sheila · Andrew D. Kaboom (ε) · Holo-Grif · Phil (Falcon)|
Lopez 2.0 · Freckles · Cyclops · Santa · Cherry · Shelly