All right, let’s not kid ourselves. My focus is always going to be on Starscream, so that’s where we’re going in this one.
Ironic, isn’t it, how the episode summaries never seem to give us the important details of an episode anymore, eh? Well, my exploring Star’s relationship…
Eh, I’m a little on the fence about this. While he was shocked and likely upset Elita joined the Decepticons, he didn’t push the need to drive her to his side. He genuinely and honestly wanted to help BA with her current dilemma and offered her an option. The reason I don’t think he was being condescending is that he is clearly trying to redeem himself in the process. He states it plainly, “Let me earn back your trust.” He acknowledges he is just as much fault in the whole Archa 7 incident as Blackarachnia’s current revenge is.
BA used the Decepticon argument because she assumed Optimus was callous and uncaring when he left her behind and thus she assumed he’s like all the other Autobots who would cut her open. Optimus is not and Transformers Animated makes several points throughout the show that Optimus’ crews are exceptions to that rule. Optimus in reality made a difficult, but necessary judgment when he left Elita behind. If he had gone for Elita, chances are, all three of them would have perished. But it still eats at him and he wants to make amends. He does not think himself better than Blackarachnia because he’s an Autobot or otherwise, he likely would have shunned her away.