Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Transformers Production Bible

Clipped from TFArchive:  In the late 90s, a fan (Mardhen Bravo) was given a copy of the production bible for the original Transformers show. Whilst not making copies he figured that transcribing the text was okay, which was posted in chunks to Greg Gaub's CybCon mailing list then collected by Jim Walters. Site updates there were abandoned in 2002/2003, with the rest of the material just being posted to the mailing group. Full credit is entirely to them; this page is just an effort to get the text into a convenient, easily searchable format. (Also note that there intentionally isn't any correction of typing mistakes, and that uncorrected mistakes were far, far more common back in the era of typewriters.)

The set has been seen at various conventions, so this very definitely isn't a piece of fan writing -- photocopies and originals of other materials also crop up at conventions and on eBay from time to time, such as the movie storyboards shared by Sam Jones. (The latter has hopefully depreciated the value for people xeroxing a binder of papers and then spamming forums trying to flog copies...)

A majority of the notes branch from stuff Marvel created then worked into Transformers Universe, but there are some interesting bits of information on familiar characters -- Rumble being specified as "red robot" (Frenzy is only mentioned in passing), other coloration, and Snarl's bio stating that he misses Cybertron as per the tech spec; either Don F. Glut didn't have the production material when he intro'd the Dinobots or chose to ignore it. The notes also mention 'female' Transformers were added at the request of TV networks.

It's unlikely a post-movie writer's guide exists in any state of completion, since notes would have been added as season three went on and the show got cancelled shortly after.

Dork Note: I reorganized the original post. I also deleted the episode synopsis and the roll-call lists because the code wouldn't work with the post. Find all the original goodness at TFArchive.

Transformers: History

May 10, 1984

Millions of years ago, in a galaxy many light-years from our solar system, the planet of CYBERTRON supported a life-force of mechanical, electronic creatures--intelligent robots--which could think and feel. As this race of robots advanced, they continued developing new technologies to increase their intelligence and abilities to incredible levels.

But with greater technology came greater evils, and Cybertron fell into a warring state with two groups of robots pitted against one another in mortal combat. One was a malevolent race of robot warriors known as the DECEPTICONS. The brutal Decepticons were driven by a single, undeviating goal--total domination of the universe. This was in bitter opposition to the more benevolent race of robots known as -- the AUTOBOTS.

In a war that raged between the forces of good and evil, devastating all in its path, the planet was drained of its once-rich sources of energy. On the verge of extinction, the Autobots finally left Cybertron in search of alternate sources of power. The Decepticons followed, still intent on destroying the last remaining Autobots forces.

It was in the wide void of space that a battle ensued and ended with both forces crashing into a small planet now recognized as Earth. The warring ships impacted into a live volcano, ending their battle with a thunderous eruption......followed by four million years of silence.

In the latter part of the Twentieth Century, the volcano erupted, releasing the two ships melded together into a single, twisted mass upon collision and swallowed so long ago. The earth's shock waves jarred the ships from their eons-long dormancy and awakened the Autobot craft's "brain," TELETRAAN I.

Probing the planet's surface, Teletraan I discovered the planet was not a desolate one but throbbing with mechanical activity. Teletraan's self-activating systems began to rebuild the shattered robonic bodies aboard the crafts, using the mechanical forms found on this new planet as models. All necessary alterations were accomplished in such a way as to preserve the robot's true, basic natures.

The Autobots, therefore, resemble Earth's peacetime vehicles of the present day: trailer truck, Volkswagon, police car, Datsun Z, ambulance, etc. The Decepticons were reformed into Earth's deadliest weapons, aircraft, and communication devices.

In addition, the former inhabitants of Cybertron had the ability to TRANSFORM themselves into their previous robotic forms and back again--at will. (This power of transformation was not unknown on their planet, but these new, Earth-related forms were.)

Once again functioning and free of their ship, the Decepticons grouped in battle formation and loosed their combined firepower on the Autobots still inside the volcano. Teletraan I, although weakened and running on low power threshold, managed to raise her defensive shields and blunted, one more time, the force of the attack. The Decepticon leader revealed to his forces that their energy levels were dangerously weakened, making them unable to mount a strong offensive. His forces regrouped to search for a new power source--energy to fuel themselves and to destroy the enemy.

The Decepticons found Earth rich in the very fuel sources they so desperately needed. Unlike on Cybertron, where there no pristine resources, this planet was rich in coal and oil, oceans, a mineral- crust and a molten metal core. With Decepticon control of Earth, it would spell doom for the Autobots and all other peace-loving civilizations of the universe.

Soon the people of Earth learned of the evil Decepticons, and they fought valiantly to save their precious life support systems. But they could do nothing in the face of this constant alien terror. Only the Autobots--those massive robots with their ethical computer "hearts"--stood between them and certain extinction. Thus it was that the hostilities that swept Cybertron were renewed on Earth. 


The Autobots are living proof that humanity's fear of the "computer-turned-monster" is not necessarily the inevitable end of electronic evolution. They are "user-friendly" machines whose "humming" hearts are as warm as any being who has fought to keep the dream of freedom alive.

The Autobots seek to stop the cancerous growth of Decepticon tyranny. They are galactic good guys of sorts, determined to save the people of Earth, themselves, and the universe from Decepticon domination. The character capsulizations on the following pages are meant to serve as STARTING POINTS for developing their personalities within the stories. Due to time restrictions, the Autobots will not ALL appear in each episode; grouping of the personalities and their relationships will depend on the needs of the individual story, as well as maintaining a balance of characters in the series. The accompanying illustrations of the robots are drawn in relative scale; their trans-forms are not.


The Autobots headquarters remains in their spacecraft which is partially buried inside a volcano, with access from outside at the volcano's base. (We are assuming the Autobots never left Earth after all at the end of the mini-series, due to the Decepticon attack.)

Inside the craft is Teletraan I, the mother computer of the Autobots. The Autobots need not consult too much with her--they, after all, have computer brains of their own--but Teletraan I is in charge of the headquarters, maintenance, and upkeep, as well as having an early warning system of the Decepticon attacks. Much of the story action, including damage repair work, can take place outside of the craft and volcano. Although all of the Autobots use the mother ship as headquarters, many of them are out on patrol (to advance story action as well as to limit the number of characters in each scene).

TRANS-FORM: trailer truck
ABILITIES: Largest and most powerful of all Autobots; an awesome fighting machine. Splits into three autonomous modules: OPTIMUS, the brain center...imbued with amazing strength and laser fire; ROLLER, the spy...operates up to 1200 miles away; COMBAT DECK...with artillery and communicators. Injury to one module is felt by the other two.
PROFILE: Wisdom is his main power thrust...motivated by immense kindness and compassion...personality might be likened to Abraham Lincoln. Feels his role is the protection of all life, including Earth-life. Fights unceasingly to defeat the Decepticons.  

FUNCTION: Security
TRANS-FORM: vanette (red)
ABILITIES: Nearly invulnerable to attack, protected by a Trithyllium-steel skin. Shoots variety of liquids from supercooled nitrogen to superheated lead...Has sonar, radar, radiowave detector. Slowest, and breaks down more often than the others.
PROFILE: Oldest, toughest, most battle-tested. probably the meanest Autobot fighter. Prefers actions to words. Bodyguard to Optimus Prime; automatically in charge of guarding anything of extreme importance. Gruff but kind.

FUNCTION: Mechanical engineer
ABILITIES: Tool-and-die genius. Makes excellent work of laser scalpels, arc-welders, electronic microscopes, circuit sensors, fluid dispensers at his disposal. Given the right parts, he can make anything from a pin to a cruise missile and usually repair any injured Autobot.
PROFILE: Likes to party, give backtalk, but does job as well as anyone. Sometimes his readiness to have a good time intereferes with effectiveness.  

FUNCTION: Defense Strategist
TRANS-FORM: Camper truck (black)
ABILITIES: Can project a nearly impenetrable invisible force-field...jams radio transmissions. Very slow.
PROFILE: Practical joker and cheerleader...makes light of any situation, no matter how serious. Because he is the most fuel-consuming member, considers himself a liability...often asks to be left behind. Often mopes about his handicaps, but his bravery and defensive prowess is unquestioned.

TRANS-FORM: Contach II (red)
ABILITIES: Arms act as powerful piledrivers. Flies for up to 2minutes with rocket back-pack. Fires flares visible for 18 miles.
PROFILE Nearly the equal of his twin brother, Spinout, in combat,but less cold-blooded. Relishes a fight to the finish...uses underhanded, dirty tactics when necessary. Rash actions often lead to injuries to himself...he takes them all in stride.

TRANS-FORM: Contach (yellow)
ABILITIES: Fires laser-guided ground-to-air missiles and high-energy electron impulses at 300 bursts/sec. Tough polymer-steel skin resists artillery impact.
PROFILE: The complete egoist...considers himself the most beautiful thing in the galaxies. Admires his own sleek styling, contemptuous of other Autobots -- particularly his twin Sideswipe. Not a team member...can be baited into dangerous situations, but a very calm, competent and ruthless war-machine.

FUNCTION: Mechanical Engineer
ABILITIES: Flying range of 800 miles propelled by solid-fuel rockets in arms. Shoots magnetic inducer, shrapnel-needle and gyro-inhibitor shells, among other armament, from his shoulder cannons.
PROFILE: "Mad scientist" of the Autobots forces, constantly inventing new weapons and gadgets. His own worst enemy...often injured while experimenting with new weapons.

FUNCTION: Military Strategist
TRANS-FORM: Datsun Z (police car)
ABILITIES: Has most sophisticated logic center of all Autobots...can analyze and advises on complex combat situations almost instantaneously. Fires wire-guided incendiary missiles and high-corrosive acid pellets. The unexpected often scrambles his circuits. PROFILE: Quiet, competent, loyal, endlessly patient. Will not be deterred until the task is completed, regardless of the obstacles. Strives to find reason and logic in everything. A listener, not a talker.

FUNCTION: Special Operations
ABILITIES: Equipped with photon rifle, flame-thrower, full-spectrum beacon, 180dB stereo speakers...creates dazzling, disorienting sound and light shows. Superb gliding ability.
PROFILE: Greatly impressed with Earth culture...always seeking to learn more. His knowledge of Earth makes him indispensable to Optimus Prime. Volunteers for most dangerous competent. Clever, darling, but prone to be distracted.

FUNCTION: Counter-Intelligence
ABILITIES: Employs turret gun as radar scope, also infra-red radiation collector...tracks machines as well as humans. Hologram gun projects three-dimensional grid laser-light topographical maps. Vulnerable to thermal and electro-magnetic interference.
PROFILE: Taken with the natural wonders of Earth, vastly preferring them to Cybertron. Brave, fearless loyal Autobot, but secretly desires to be human.

FUNCTION: Counter Intelligence
ABILITIES: Photon-disruptor can make him invisible, or alter his physical placement or appearance. Can also project holographic images. Expert marksman with armor-piercing rocket-dart hunting rifle.
PROFILE: Enigmatic, a "mystery man." Does not share the group's enthusiasm. Others are uncertain of his dedication and are reluctant to trust him fully. Reserved...a effective fighter who prefers to penetrate enemy lines on solo missions to gather intelligence. Suspected as counter-spy.

ABILITIES: Fires shell containing 4 independently targetable warheads up to 8.3 miles, and lightning-like 80,000 volt beam up to 12 miles of limited accuracy.
PROFILE: Often talks incessantly and inanely...lightens the situation for others with his gregarious manner. Despite formidable weaponry and blazing speed, he hates war. Haunted by the memory of Decepticons destroying his home city; often inhibited by his disdain for combat.

ABILITIES: One of the fastest Autobots...often uses his speed to draw fire away from others. Shoots "glass gas" which makes metal as brittle as glass.
PROFILE: His motto: "Let me at 'em!" His eagerness and daring -- unequalled. Good-natured. Driven by desire for vengeance on Decepticons...but his recklessness often leads to situations too dangerous for him to handle.

FUNCTION: Construction Engineer
TRANS-FORM: orange semi-truck (no trailer)
ABILITIES: Arm sensors can test materials for strength, heat resistance, elasticity, etc. Extremely strong. Superior mathematical and geometrical abilities.
PROFILE: Grumbly, dour, pessimistic..."He looks at the world through sludge-colored windshields." Says it can't be built, then builds anyway. Not too socialble, but absolutely reliable.

TRANS-FORM: sports car
ABILITIES: Fastest Autobot over short distances. Casts powerful magnetic field which can attract or repel large metal objects, and smash them at closer distances. His power uses much energy.
PROFILE: Enthusiastic but impatient...short attention span. Good in situations requiring fast, decisive action. Often burns himself out due to carelessness.

FUNCTION: Demolitions
TRANS-FORM: olive-drab van-truck
ABILITIES: Second strongest Autobot -- can lift 190,000 lbs., knock down a small building with one punch. High resistance to artillery fire. Vulnerable to attack by electromagnetic waves due to unsophisticated circuitry.
PROFILE: To him, Earth is essentially a hostile environment; and he loves it. Strong, rugged, agile -- most macho of all Autobots. Delights in challenges...contemptuous of those not as tough as himself.

FUNCTION: Transport, Reconnaisance
TRANS-FORM: blue pickup truck
ABILITIES: Tremendous strength, endurance...totes heavy loads long distances. Launches up short distances, floats down on compressed air...easy target due to limited maneuverability. Can detect infra-red.
PROFILE: The complainer of the group...hates everything about Earth. A self-proclaimed misfit...finds fault in everything and everyone. Acts this way to help cheer up others as they try to cheer him.

FUNCTION: Espionage
TRANS-FORM: Volkswagon
ABILITIES: Endowed with best vision of all Autobots and most energy-efficient. The weakest Autobot, but his stealth and impulsiveness more than compensates. No weapons.
PROFILE: Over-eager, feisty, brave...and inexperienced. The smallest Autobot, he tries to prove himself by daring to go where others can't -- or won't -- often getting in over his head. The youngest...he idolizes others, especially Optimus Prime and Ironhide.

ABILITIES: Largest and swiftest Autobot...swing-wing design in jet mode--reaches speeds of Mach 4.2 with wings back. Orbital velocity and escape of Earth's gravity (speeds to Mach 29) achieved by adding twin scramjet modules...Can fly halfway around the world in 30 minutes, carrying other Autobots. Carries 4 particle-beam cannons and heat-seeking, armor-piercing missiles. Prone to mechanical failure due to advanced technology.
PROFILE: Originally a scientist-explorer on Cybertron before the Autobot-Decepticon wars, Jetfire crashed on Earth and was buried in the Arctic ice for millions of years. (Episode #4) He believes that victory over the Decepticons will come through advancements in Autobot technology. His allegiance to the cause is matched by his devotion to scientific research, and his intellectual curiosity and dedication to all life forms keeps him on the side of the Autobots. 

(Note: JETFIRE has been "transformed" into SKYFIRE -- with a different model -- due to legal reasons. Do not use this character unless necessary.)


The Dinobots were created by Wheeljack in Episodes #5 and #7 as an aid to the Autobots. Their huge size and strength can help move mountains, but their limited brainpower can cause problems and limit their effectiveness. The Dinobots' personalities are similar to that of young infants, with limited speech patterns and emotional outbursts. When not called into service, they remain inside the volcano of Autobot headquarters. Like the Autobots and Decepticons, they each transform between their dinosaur and humanoid robot modes. 

TRANS-FORM: Tyrannosaurus
ABILITIES: In dinobot mode, has great strength...jaws can break almost anything in two. Most powerful Dinobot...In robot mode, carries energo-sword and double-barrelled rocket launcher.
PROFILE: Fearsome, arrogant leader...cold, merciless, but a valiant warrior...would overthrow Optimus Prime as Autobot leader, but not intelligent enough...contempt for the weak, including humans.

TRANS-FORM: Triceratops
ABILITIES: In Dinobot mode, can shoot 3000@ C flame up to 80 feet from mouth... Enormous strength -- can shatter a brick building with his head...In robot mode, uses laser rifle.
PROFILE: Disruptive--often brawls with comrades...rash, not too bright...nasty, mean-spirited...also resents authority of Optimus Prime... often other Autobots won't help him when he's in trouble...enjoys melting his enemies.

TRANS-FORM: Brontosaurus
ABILITIES: Can exert 40,000 psi with a single stomp of his foot, enough to shatter bridges and crack mountains...immense strength and endurance...adept to water-jungle environments
PROFILE: Gentle and shy, but terrifying and stoppable in battle. Slow, not too clever...often victim of his own calamities... Also resents authority of Optimus Prime...likes to make his presence known with a stomp of his foot.

TRANS-FORM: Stegosaurus
ABILITIES: Large golden plates on spinal assembly are solar collectors--strength increases tenfold in sunlight...Tail can shatter 20' concrete cube...armored hide resists most missiles..
PROFILE: Unhappy loner of few words and opinions...hates Dinobot form, longs to return to Cybertron...Finds joy only in battle...slow, uncooperative nature.

TRANS-FORM: Pterodactyl
ABILITIES: In flying mode, can glide up to 250 mph...under each wing he carries missile launcher (which can be used in robot mode) His specialty is swooping low to drop missiles on target.
PROFILE: Good-natured, kind personality hidden in fearsome shell of his form...Fearsome, enjoys using fear as a weapon..Enjoys swooping down on enemies and seeing them scatter.  


Nineteen additional characters are introduced here (fifteen Autobots and five Decepticons). Models shown are not in comparative scale. Although Reflector should no longer be used as a character in the series, JETFIRE will be redesigned and reintroduced in the near future.

This brings the current total of TRANSFORMERS characters (depending on how you count them!) to 68.

FUNCTION: Geologist
TRANS-FORM: Dune Buggy
ABILITIES: Capable of traveling over very rugged terrain. Various sensors can determine chemical composition of land and find needed resources. Very agile as a robot, but susceptible to mental stress.
PROFILE: No interest in warfare; prefers long, lone trips into deserts and along coasts--the only places he feels he can escape to relax. Cool-headed, low-key, personable--what Earthlings call "laid- back." Fights when called upon despite anti-war feelings.

FUNCTION: Communications
ABILITIES: As AM/FM stereo cassette deck, he can perform as deck plus receive radio signals of all frequencies no matter how low the power output is - Acts as Autobot communications center...can transmit up to 4,000 miles. Carries electro-scrambler gun that disrupts electrical devices.
PROFILE: Loud personality...Finds all Earth music interesting, but it's rock 'n' roll - good, hard and loud - that really sparks his circuits. In the forefront of any situation - makes his presence known. 

FUNCTION: Reconnaisance & Communications
TRANS-FORM: Spaceship
ABILITIES: As spacecraft, he can achieve Earth orbit, even go to the Moon and back - with enough fuel. Can act as communications satellite...his optical sensors can see a bicycle 600 miles below. His high-powered particle beam has pinpoint accuracy. Not well-suited to function on the ground as a robot.
PROFILE: Lonely in outer space, he relieves the boredom of space travel by zig-zagging through meteor showers and scaring humans by hovering over their backyards at night.

FUNCTION: Architect
TRANS-FORM: Construction truck crane
ABILITIES: As a crane, he can lift up to 35 tons, positioning it with precision and grace. As robot, he uses a high-temperature arc-welder rifle. Can launch rockets from wrist sockets. Prone to breakdowns in vehicle mode.
PROFILE: On Cybertron, his buildings were considered works of art on Earth his ideas are limited by war. Takes pride in his work, depressed if it's destroyed in battle. Artistic sensitivity makes him moody.

FUNCTION: Maintenance
TRANS-FORM: Towtruck
ABILITIES: As a towtruck, he can haul 400,000 lbs. In robot mode, he is very strong...launches heat-seeking missiles from wrist sockets. Full spectrum sensor behind his head determines an objects composition, desity, strength, energy properties. Slow, has high fuel consumption.
PROFILE: "No exceptions!" is his motto...all Autobots must submit to his maintenance schedule. Jovial, enjoys his job and is good at it; will find any problem, from engine overhaul to smallest leaky gasket.

FUNCTION: Search & Rescue
TRANS-FORM: Fire truck
ABILITIES: Can do anything an Earth fire truck can in auto mode. Great strength...ceramic-plated armor skin can take up to 8000 C. Extinguisher rifle shoots flame-suppressing foam, energy-damping beam to counter other beams. Shoots short-range missiles from forearms in robot mode.
PROFILE: The hotter things get, the better he likes it - not only fires, but battle, too. Often distracted from his job to engage in combat. Doesn't follow orders too well.

FUNCTION: Scientist
TRANS-FORM: Microscope
ABILITIES: Extremely smart. Scientific specialties are metallurgy, molecular chemistry, electrical engineering. As microscope, can magnify up to a million times. Lens barrel converts to powerful light cannon (can shoot objects 2,000 miles away). Also carries concussion rifle in robot mode.
PROFILE: Unquenchable thirst for knowledge - seeks it to exclusion of all else. Main role is to study how best the Autobots can adapt to Earth. Absent-minded. Often has problems with his lenses - a weakness.

ABILITIES: Cruises at 500 mph...can increase power output and speed to 3200 mph for short periods. Excellent maneuverability as plane; little strength as robot. Carries small concussion bombs...shoots short range, high - temperature thermal beam from his of his nose module - both as jet and robot.
PROFILE: A show-off...proud that he's one of the few Autobots that can fly. He delights in displaying his dazzling aerial virtuosity; just wants appreciation from friends and foes alike. Tends to get into more trouble than he can handle.

FUNCTION: Security Director
TRANS-FORM: Fire Chief's car
ABILITIES: Can trigger and electronic alarm on each of the other Autobots. His sensory perception is extraordinary. Fast in vehicular mode. Carries a 25-mile range rocket launcher and particle beam rifle.
PROFILE: Paranoia makes him good at his job. Nothing escapes his  notice, no matter how small. Expects trouble when sensors activated. Edgy...unpopular with comrades, but appreciated. Prone to rash judgments.

FUNCTION: Naval Defense
TRANS-FORM: Hovercraft
ABILITIES: Capable of speeds up to 120 knots with 4000-mile range. Equipped with various sonar and radar devices as well as underwater and surface-to-air laser cannons. Wheels allow limited travel on land. In robot mode, he uses laser cannons which he shoots through his hands. Not too strong or mobile as robot.
PROFILE: Displays a zest for naval battle unmatched by fellow Autobots. Loves the ocean and its creatures...unhappy when he returns to land and reverts to robot mode.  

FUNCTION: Diversionary Tactician
TRANS-FORM: Datsun 280 ZX Turbo
ABILITIES: In auto mode, he emits thick, black smoke from tailpipe that gravitates toward metal (such as Decepticons). As robot, he shoots missiles which wreak havoc on enemy aircraft and guidance systems...electro-disruptor rifle shorts out electrical targets.
PROFILE: Considered the most devious yet most trusted of Autobots. Usually has ulterior motives in everything. Job is to lead the enemy astray. Sneaky, but charming and affable...roots out the deepest concerns of comrades at Prime's request.

TRANS-FORM: Corvette Stingray
ABILITIES: In auto mode, he goes 280 mph - uses wings under rear fenders for sub-sonic flight. Launcher fires heat-seeking missiles, and has a black beam gun to shoot black light beams to temporarily blind enemies.
PROFILE: He is called a "lousy Earth-lover" by some fellow Autobots because he prefers his sleek auto form to his robot mode. Thinks they're jealous of his good looks, and prefers to be in car mode whenever possible.

ABILITIES: Can go over 30 mph over the roughest terrain, and can hit a target 1.5 miles away with a shell. Shoots various types of shells, including: explosive, thermal, acid, cryogenic and sonic. Great strength, but helpless if upended in vehicle mode.
FUNCTION: Thinks he's more impressive than his comrades do. He likes to show off his sharpshooting skills. Boisterous, loud-mouthed, raucous sense of humor. Vain - upset by even the smallest scratch to his gun barrel.

TRANS-FORM: Defense Base
ABILITIES: In robot mode he possesses enormous strength and firepower...larger than all other robots--including blow can shatter a mountainside...laser cannon on head...Transforms to laser cannon tank and rocket/launching pad.
PROFILE: his courage is as great as his size; he knows he is the last line of defense for the Autobots...serious, grim...speaks slowly with few words...booming voice... 


All five combine to transform into... SUPERION!

FUNCTION: Reconnaisance
TRANS-FORM: F4 Phantom Jet
ABILITIES: In robot mode, uses a photon displacer gun that distorts appearance of objects for up to five minutes. In jet mode, shoots laser missiles...
PROFILE: Definite hazard in skies...mesmerized by spectacular views and doesn't pay attention to where he's going..childlike sense of wonder...sudden jerks, jolts, hairpin turns, rapid velocity changes..danger to himself

NAME: SKYDIVE FUNCTION: Air Warfare Strategist
TRANS-FORM: F16 Jet Fighter
ABILITIES: Possibly the most skilled flyer of all Transformers. Can duplicate any flight pattern by robot mode uses Mega-gun, whose beam crumbles objects to dust...also laser missiles. (right arm of Superion)
PROFILE: Would rather read about jet fighters than be one...Fascinated by science of aerial warfare..reluctant, doesn't realize how smart he is...a student who should be a professor. Prone to mid-air stalls.

FUNTION: Ground Troops Support
ABILITIES: vertical take-off and landing craft...most maneuverable, but slowest of the sharpshooter with twin mortar cannons as jet, neutron rifle as robot.
PROFILE: Unpopular...incessant braggart, takes credits for exploits of other Aerialbots...Prime is supportive since he's hard working and loyal, but secretly lacks self-confidence due to his slowness and poor range of fire. Usually needs more maintenance than others.

TRANS-FORM: F15 Jet fighter
ABILITIES: flies at Mach 2.5, range of 1500 miles...carries air-to-air heat-seeking missiles, torque rifle with force beam. (right leg module of Superion)
PROFILE: Tactically, most fearless Autobot...loves surprises, just wants to have fun. Prefers streaking into a cluster of Decepticons to shooting at long range. Tends to get in over his head.

FUNCTION: Aerialbot Commander
TRANS-FORM: Concorde Airliner
ABILITIES: In jet mode, speed of Mach 1.9, range 4500 miles...carries electrostatic battery that releases electric bolt (up to 150,000 volts) through his nose cone..Uses electrostatic discharger rifle in robot mode.

PROFILE: Scared of heights. Brave, grimly determined warrior, but struggles to maintain that image in order to hide phobia. Selected by Prime to command so that he'd be too busy worrying about others to worry about himself.

FUNCTION: Air Warrior
TRANS-FORM: the five Aerialbots
ABILITIES: Flies at 800 mph, range of 5800 miles. Can demolish battleship with one blow. Uses stress fracture cannon to overload natural fracture lines...creates earthquakes.
PROFILE: A fierce and frightful fighting machine. One primary purpose: to destroy the Decepticons. Cold, aloof, not talkative. Difficult for him to adapt
to new situations...primitive mental functions. Not innovative. 

All Five vehicles combine to transform into... DEFENSOR!

Although the enclosed product information arrived too late to be incorporated into the final premises of the series, Hasbro and Griffin/Bacal would appreciate it if they could be inserted into existing story development. The Protectobots (formerly known as the Rescue Group Vehicles) have no known origin at this time. 

This brings the final total of potential TRANSFORMERS characters in the series to: 92.

TRANS-FORM: Police Motorcycle (Patrol Bike)
ABILITIES: In bike mode, his speed is 140 mph, extremely maneuverable...Uses twin "vaporators" which shoot mists of oxidizing, freezing and corrosive liquids; photon pistol that shoots lightbursts thaqt blind enemies.
PROFILE: Relaxed, easy going, happy wherever he is. Pacifist -- difficult for him to accept his role as part of the Protectobot team...Reluctant to fight back as he seeks non-violent response.

FUNCTION: Air Support
TRANS-FORM: Police Helicopter
ABILITIES: Carries twin rock launchers that fire armor-piercing "smart" rockets
(seek targets based on encoded computer images) ...Photon pistol blinds enemies with light bursts
PROFILE: Basic street-fighter -- prefers using his rotor assembly for slashing Decepticons than flying. Considers long-range air attacks unsporting, cowardly. Prefers hand-to-hand combat.

FUNCTION: Interceptor
TRANS-FORM: Patrol Car
ABILITIES: 180 mph with range of 400 miles. Trunk-mounted, double barrelled air compressor cannon can knock jet out of the sky...Photon pistol in robot mode.
PROFILE: nothing escapes his notice...amazing capactiy to adapt to and understand his environment... Clever an determined, nothing detershim from seeking his prey--except an empty fuel tank.


TRANS-FORM: Ambulance
ABILITIES: Carries dual-barrelled decrystallizer cannon which weakens metal by disrupting crystalline structure, shattering it. Robot mode carries photon pistol. Each fist has narrow laser beam for surgical welding.
PROFILE: Compassionate, hates seeing anything in pain...Been known to fix a broken street lamp or ordinary car. Overly cautious--keeps injured Autobots in repair bay longer than necessary. Quiet and hard-working.

FUNCTION: Protectobot Leader
TRANS-FORM: Fire Engine
ABILITIES: Hose line can shoot streams of high-pressure water (and other non-corrosive liquids like oil and alcohol) 1200 feet. Incredible strength. Fireball cannon shoots flames up to five miles... Heat-shielding armor.
PROFILE: Likes to be where the action is. Charismatic, inspiring, others have difficulty keep up with his non-stop pace. Believes in being maximally operational every moment of one's life.

FUNCTION: Defensive Operations
TRANS-FORM: the five Rescue Group vehicles
ABILITIES: Tremendous strength (what else is new?) Impervious to most artillery... CAn surround simself and 50-ft circle around him with protective force field (but uses much energy) ..Fireball cannon ..
PROFILE: Emotionally attached to humans -- views them like his own children. Will expend last drop of fuel to help them. Seeks human friendship, but humans fear his hulking, mechanical form. Suffers occasional mental lapses.


The Decepticons are an evil race of technologically advanced robots. They are on Earth looking for new sources of energy to defeat the Autobots and conquer the universe. Their transformation ability is used for the purposes of disguise--to spy without detection. Unlike the Autobots, the Decepticons have the power of flight. Although they have emotions of anger, greed, envy and disgust, they prefer mechanical efficiency over human feelings, and consider human life to be inferior and unimportant.


The Decepticon base lies in the depths of the ocean, in a canyon deeper than the Grand Canyon. Located on a ridge at the mouth of a cavern that leads from the base of the canyon, the Decepticon headquarters has been constructed around their space cruiser which crashed into the ocean after an aerial battle with the Autobots. One section of the complex is activated to telescope up through the waters and rise above the surface of the ocean where the Decepticons gain entrance. The top of this section is a radar/video scanner, constantly revolving to allow Megatron to keep watch on his global operations.

(The "space bridge," which transports energy in the form of "energon cubes" is also located here.) Integrated within the complex are other sections , including an automated repair shop to reconstruct Decepticons injured in battle.

ABILITIES: Incredibly powerful and maliciously brilliant, his  intelligence equalled only by Optimus Prime's. Fires nuclear-charged Fusion Cannon. Able to interdimensionally link up with a black hole and draw from it anti-matter to exploit as awesomely destructive weapon. No known weakness; assumed to be totally impregnable.
PROFILE: Totally lacking in compassion, no comprehension of mercy. A malignant combination of brute strength, ruthlessness and terror. Driven to cominate Cybertron completely plus complete subjugation of all other life-forms throughout the universe he arrogantly assumes destruction of Autobot striking forces remaining on Cybertron and all Autobots on Earth. Determined to possess all of  Earth's resources.

FUNCTION: Aerospace Commander
TRANS-FORM: jet fighter (silver)
ABILITIES: Fastest flyer of squad...can reach Mach 2.8, altitude of  52 miles. Shoots cluster bombs and null-ray which disrupts flow of electricity.
PROFILE: Driven by envy...seeks to replace Megatron as leader. Ruthless, cold-blooded, cruel...considers himself most sophisticated and handsome. Believes Decepticons should rely more on guile and speed rather than brute force in action against Autobots. Excels at what he does, but tendency to overrate himself.

TRANS-FORM: jet fighter (blue)
ABILITIES: Flies at speeds up to 1500 mph...produces controlled, deafening sonic booms heard for 200 miles. Equipped with poweful drone rockets and incendiary gun.
PROFILE: Dedicated to flight...contemptuous of anything that cannot fly. Not totally convinced of Decepticons' cause, but persuaded to continue battling Autobots. Doubts about the cause sometimes impede effectiveness.

TRANS-FORM: jet fighter (olive drab)
ABILITIES: Reaches top speed of 1500 mph. Can instantly teleport up to 2.5 miles. Carries heat-seeking missiles and variable-caliber machine gun. Sometimes crashes due to inaccurate reporting.
PROFILE: A sneak...maliciously enjoys playing cruel pranks on fellow Decepticons...relishes mounting sneak attacks on Autobots. Not the brightest...would be useless without Megatron's supervision.

FUNCTION: Communications
TRANS-FORM: large format cassette recorder
ABILITIES: Sensors detect even lowest energy transmissions...can "read minds" by monitoring electrical brain impulses. Acts as radio link...carries a concussion blaster-gun.
PROFILE: Opportunist...despised by fellow Decepticons. It is said he can hear a fly sneeze...and will use anything he monitors for blackmail to advance him in the ranks.

FUNCTION: Interrogation
TRANS-FORM: Mini-cassette recorder
ABILITIES: Flies at speeds up to 250 mph...uses two independently targetable laser cannons with extreme precision to get information from captives.
PROFILE: Takes pleasure in hunting his prey, preferably straggling survivors of a battle. Tendency to cowardice...will turn tail and run for safety if threatened. Can panic his systems into shutting down when faced with a shortage of ruby crystals that empower lasers.

(LASERBEAK'S twin toy, BUZZSAW, should be used occasionally.)

FUNCTION: Saboteur
TRANSFORM: cassette
ABILITIES: Can virtually escape detection -- electro- magnetic emission shield, soundless walk, disappears in subdued light or shadow. Carries two powerful proton bombs. Light-sensitive...easily blinded.
PROFILE: A loner...a creature of the night. Craftiest Decepticon...adept at devising deadly new strategies. Aloof, but his deeds command respect.

FUNCTION: Demolitions
TRANS-FORM: Mini-cassette
ABILITIES: Transmits immense low frequency groundwaves to create powerful earthquakes. Physical strength limited by his small stature, but ability to shatter ground makes him difficult to approach in a fight.
PROFILE: Basic street punk...small but always acting tough. Quick temper and mean disposition...follows Megatron's orders eagerly.

(NOTE: RUMBLE'S twin toy, FRENZY can serve as a replacement.)  

FUNCTION: Cybertron Guard
TRANS-FORM: ray gun
ABILITIES: Detachable video scanning for remote planetary coverage. Ability to project up to five holographic self-duplicates to any Cybertron location simultaneously. Disintegrator attachment for
deadly accurate destructive power.
PROFILE: Caretaker of greater ambitions. No emotions--undeviating in following Megatron's orders. Self-programmed to destroy any unidentified creature who attempts to penetrate boundaries for which he is responsible. 

FUNCTION: Reconaissance
TRANS-FORM: camera
ABILITIES: Highly developed infra-red vision...enables him to record images in total darkness and through camouflage, as well as from great distances. Powerful flash explosion leaves enemy temporarily blinded and disoriented for maximum of fifteen seconds. (In his robot mode, Reflector is 3 robots that speak together and combine as they transform into one camera.)
PROFILE: Tendancy to be distracted by visual complexities...intrigued with new challenges of Earth's topography. Impressed with his own ability...spies on comrades with probable intention of blackmail. 



The Insecticons were originally Decepticons who escaped in a small spacecraft from the main ship before in crash-landed on Earth. During the four million years that followed, the computer system of the craft developed the robots to transform from robot to mechanical insectoid forms.  Originally introduced in Episode #12, the Insecticons live in the former spacecraft in the Indonesian swamps. Although there are only three primary Insecticon characters, others of similar form (but non-speaking) join them in their mercenary march for energy sources.  They wear the Decepticon symbol and may often join up with Megatron, but ultimately are concerned with their own interests.  

TRANS-FORM: Grasshopper
ABILITIES: In insect mode, he can use powerful legs to propel him to heights of 40 ft, distances of 1/10th mile...punch hole in 1/4" robot mode can fly 30 mph...sub-machine gun
PROFILE: Charming but cruelly clever...makes friends so he can influence them to do his bidding by blackmailing them...Humans particularly susceptible to this Insecticon...

ABILITIES: Can turn foes into helpless accomplices by injecting cerebro-shells into their heads (robot or human) with his him control of their minds...head-mounted mortar throws explosive shell...
PROFILE: Cruel sense of humor...amuses himself by having his victims debase themselves once he gains control of their minds.

TRANS-FORM: Lamellicorn
ABILITIES: In insect mode, his twin antennae generates 40,000 volts of electricity...uses antennae to control almost any electrical robot mode can attract lightning bolts to shoot out of hands ...grenade launcher...
PROFILE: Has piercing battle cry...repeats last word of dialogue...noise of war is music to his audio modules...

 ...all six combine together to form DEVASTATOR!

These six construction vehicles are Decepticons, and as such, have no explained origin  (first seen in Episode #13).  They serve as a separate support unit to build whatever is needed by Megatron for his plan of universal domination.  When necessary, the Constructicons transform and combine together to create a super-huge robot, the DEVASTATOR.

TRANS-FORM: Tractor Shovel
ABILITIES:  In vehicular mode, his shovel can slice through 12" thick steel and can lift 30 tons...can fly 60 mph with levitation wing...uses laser pistol as robot...(Devastator:  right leg and part of torso)
PROFILE:  Leader of Constructicons...wizard at designing fortresses and energy plants, but modest.  Shows malevolence by incorporating defeated Autobots into his structures.

TRANS-FORM: Truck Crane
ABILITIES:  His crane can lift 20 tons--extremely small error tolerance...Equally precise as surgeon...has rocket launcher, laser pistol...(Devastator:  shoulders & head module)
PROFILE:  Snobbish, supercilious, unpopular perfectionist...considers others crude and dim-witted...performs his job to perfection with the precision of a fine jeweler...

TRANS-FORM:  Dump truck
ABILITIES:  As vehicle, can carry 90 tons for 200 miles...uses dual heat-seeking missile robot, has laser pistol.. (Devastator:  torso module)...slow...
PROFILE:  Unhappy with his unglamorous role, but understands its importance...secretly desires to be a warrior...sensitive to teasing...can be goaded into fights in which he is overmatched.

TRANS-FORM:  Bulldozer
ABILITIES:  In vehicular mode, can exert a force of 800,000 psi at speed of 30 mph to knock down anything...near-invulnverable titanium-steel hide...has short-range concussion bomb robot, carries laser pistol... (Devastator: left arm module)...often buried by buildings he destroys
PROFILES:  Rubble-strewn wasteland is his idea of a beautiful landscape. His wild ways create fear and terror...rarely leaves any building standing..   loves to show off to his comrades.

TRANS-FORM:  Concrete mixer
ABILITIES:  Uses acids and bonding agents to reduce and recombine almost anything put inside mixing drum...a chemistry lab on wheels. Has infra-red cannon, laser pistol, optical distortion projector..(Devastator:  left leg module)
PROFILE:  Nothing is safe from him...will use anything from rock to robot to make new materials...Performs job with evil, cackling glee...a little bit of "mad scientist"..

TRANS-FORM:  Power Shovel
ABILITIES: In vehicular mode, his shovel has magnetic, ionic, electric and gas sensors to detect presence of uels, metals, etc. Emits sonic charges into ground to determine its composition (Devastator:  right arm module)
PROFILE:  Desperately tries to prove his worth to comrades by finding things of value (digging up hillsides, etc.) but usually brings back worthless junk. Megatron tolerates him.


TRANS-FORM: Dark blue plane with gold wings
ABILITIES: In jet mode, the sound of his engines causes petrifying fear in those who hear them - a real effect, based on his combination of frequencies. He carries two concussion missiles - uses fear to conquer enemies.
PROFILE: His silent, mournful manner even puts off his fellow Decepticons. Needs to fee in control of a situation, or else he withers under fear, too, and is useless.

TRANS-FORM: White plane with red wings
ABILITIES: His nose module can withstand impact with three-foot thick concrete at 1500 mph. Flies as fast as Mach 2.8, carries cluster bomb launchers, laser rifles. Too many crashes can injure internal mechanics. Very durable.
PROFILE: Mid-air collisions are his specialty, and he enjoys them so much that is makes little difference if his target is an opponent or not. These one-sided jousts make him a terror without equal in the skies.

TRANS-FORM: Maroon plane
ABILITIES: Sudden, powerful accelerations can shake apart nearby buildings. Flies at Mach 2.5, can double speed in twenty seconds for up to two minutes. Carries four air-to-air missiles and two automatic missile launchers.
PROFILE: He rattles the very air with the roar of his jets, believing half the battle is won if opponent is "psyched out" by his mere arrival, so he makes no attempt to be sneaky. Pompous, loud-mouthed braggart, not too brave.

FUNCTION: Ground and Air Commando
ABILITIES: Flies at Mach 2.7, range of 1500 miles, has heat-seeking missiles as jet. As tank, has track mounted cannon. As robot, has electron-scimitar and gyro blaster rifle. Can transform very rapidly, sometimes stuck in mid-transform...
PROFILE: Cruel sense of humor, loud-mouthed, belligerent and brash. Not very subtle - likes to fly at target as jet and transforms in mid- air to tank before collision.

FUNCTION: Military Transport
ABILITIES: As space shuttle, he can launch weapons, satellites, and carry cargo into orbit. Can travel from Earth to moon and back but not much more (fuel supply limited). As train, can reach 400 mph. As robot, he has great strength, carries powerful ionic displacer rifle, sirupting molecular bonds in metal alloys with its beam.
PROFILE: Creating confusion is his specialty. Thrives on foes' panic and fear. Favorite ploy is to lure foes into train tunnel, then exiting in shuttle mode.


All five combine to transform into... MENASOR!


ABILITIES: In auto mode, goes to 220 mph...Has radar scan that covers twenty mile radius...In robot mode, has compressor air gun that shoots a 40,000 psi blast of air. PROFILE: Sullen, fatalistic, sees little reason to continue Transformers War...Vain -- spends more time keeping himself shiney than comrades...Difficult to motivate, but a good battle helps lift his spirits.

TRANS-FORM: Countach
ABILITIES: In car mode, his engine emits vibration that causes mechanical failures in other vehicles...can speed to 200 mph...uses concussion cannon in robot mode (for similar breakdown results in other vehicles) PROFILES: Extreme self-consciousness...thinks everyone is staring at him--even other cars and stoplights...finds heavy traffic nerve-wracking...would prefer to be human so he'd fit in better...prone to leaky fuel pump.

FUNCTION: Terrorist
ABILITIES: In car mode, up to 250 mph, with amazing maneuverability..In robot mode, his scattershot gun sprays laser beams over wide areas (could demolish 5-story building in two minutes)...Prone to tire blow-outs.
PROFILE: Reckless driver, screaming and laughing...exults in the accidents he causes...some comrades think it's an act, others know he's really as nuts as he appears...Fears quiet, makes him nervous and hampers his effectiveness.

TRANS-FORM: Formula 1 car
ABILITIES: In car mode, he has a "plasma-energy blaster"...Carries a gravity-enhancing "gravito-gun." Prone to overheating...
PROFILE: Nasty, underhanded--loves to gloat over his victories. Would rather be scrapped than lose. Megatron would sooner melt him than talk to him, but knows he's even worse company for the Autobots.

FUNCTION: Stunticon leader
TRANS-FORM: truck semi with trailer
ABILITIES: Can survive a collision with anyone, except Optimus Prime. Reaches a top speed of 140 mph and can shatter a 20-foot thick concrete block. Uses a 400 mph, wind-producing cyclone gun.
PROFILE: No one on the road is colder and crueler. Shows no mercy to human drivers who happen to be on the highway. Seeks to destroy Prime so he can be
"King of the Road."

FUNCTION: Super Warrior
TRANS-FORM: The 5 Stunticons (trailer truck as body)
ABILITIES: Tremendous strength, his punch has the force of 140 tons. Impervious to most artillery. Uses Motormaster's cyclone gun and carries an ionizer sword with a 50,000 volt charge.
PROFILE: A clanking, crushing terror that destroys all his his path--the ultimate Decepticon weapon if he wasn't so confused by the opposing thoughts of
the five Stunticons who comprise him. (Motormaster loathed by other four).

All five combine to transform into... BRUTICUS!

FUNCTION: Ground assualt  
ABILITIES: Enormously strong, resistant to most conventional artillary...As tank, goes 45 mph, range 600 miles...Turret-mounted gun shoots 200 lbs. TNT-equivalent shells; twin sonic cannon shoots ear-splitting bursts of stereo sound energy... as robot has 10-Megawatt electron gun.
PROFILE: Extremely loud, irritates all nearby. Hair trigger temper, blusteringly belligerent...savage fury, nothing calms his anger.

FUNCTION: Munitions expert
ABILITIES: Uses a scatter blaster that sprays explosive pellets; and a gyro-gun that disturbs the balance centers of other Transformers, hampering their movement. Prone to overturning; unprotected dashboard vulnerable.
PROFILE: Easy-going and food-natured, but within him beats the fuel pump of the most greed-driven street hustler. Thrives on wheeling and dealing--works for his own personal advancement. A one-robot "black market."

FUNCTION: Space Warrior
TRANS-FORM: Space Shuttle
ABILITIES: Flies at 26,000 mph, stays in orbit for eight months. Shoots powerful x-ray laser from nose cone--can hit target 12,000 miles away. In robor mode, uses ionic blaster that disrupts electrical flow.
PROFILE: Aristocratic, aloof -- feels literally and figuratively above the other Transformers as he soars through outer space. Disguises long-distance lonliness; cruelly efficient as raining destruction on earth below.

FUNCTION: Interrogation
TRANS-FORM: Helicopter
ABILITIES: As copter, goes to 300 mph, range 1200 miles. Whirls rotor blades to create 200-300 mph wind funnels. As robot, uses semi-automatic glue gun that shoots capsules of high-adhesive liquid...
PROFILE: Takes an evil, cackling delight in trapping Autobots inside him and taking them dizzying, death-defying flights to scare info out of them--then drops them.

FUNCTION: Combaticon commander
TRANS-FORM: Missile Trailer
ABILITIES: As missile trailer, launches photon missiles (6500 mile range) --each equivalent to 3000 tons of TNT. As robot, uses powerful sonic stun gun. Accuracy of missiles hampered by electromagnetic interference. PROFILE: An aloof planner -- prefers devising sinister schemes to combat, but is a relentless, furious fighter when stirred to action (usually when plans don't unfold as expected) -- Seeks perfection in battle strategy.

TRANS-FORM: the 5 Combaticons
ABILITIES: Incredibly strong...can pulverize a suspension bridge with one 14,000 psi punch. Uses Onslaught's powerful sonic stun-gun. Armor impervious to most artillery.
PROFILE: A model soldier...performs his tasks cooly, efficiently, unquestioningly. Knows how to follow orders, but lacks initiative. Liable to stand around, looking confused if not given instructions. Slow and not very agile.


TO *Margaret Loesch and Lee Gunther* DATE *April 30, 1984*

FROM *Dick Robbins and Bryce Malek* SUBJECT *TRANSFORMERS*

The following comments represent development work done on the TRANSFORMERS syndicated series. Since the basis of the series and the three half-hour specials is an existing toy line, much of the series conception seems pre-determined. Distinct, individual series concepts were difficult to create, and many of our suggestions relate to one common situation:

The basic action of the series is the battle between "good" and "bad" machines, with the good machines, the Autobots, seemingly more human and earth oriented than their nemesis, the Decepticons. (In the specials, the Autobots work *with* the Earth's governments to get the energy resources they need to revitalize their home planet, while the Decepticons attempt to steal what they need by force.)

The basic struggle of power is over *energy* - the life blood of the TRANSFORMERS. Their home planet, Cybertron, a world consisting totally of machines, is battleworn and energy-scarce. Earth becomes a valuable prize because of its plentiful energy resources . The Decepticons plunder the earth as sort of "space pirates," stealing the energy they need for their long-range goal of universal domination. The Autobots need energy to battle and thwart the evil Decepticons, but are willing to work with the Earthlings in friendship.

Everyone seems to agree that the totally-mechanized world of Cybertron has a unique look and should be strongly considered for use in the series. At one time, we considered having the action of the series set totally on Cybertron, with the battle of the Autobots and Decepticons taking place on their own planet (sort of a dramatic JETSONS).

But the fact that Hasbro's toy robots transform into *Earth*-related objects (distinctive automotive and aircraft styles) seems to demand that Earth's civilization remain part of the action and background. The Autobots want more than freedom of their planet and the defeat of the Decepticons. They want to create a partnership with the Earth and its inhabitants. Several of the Autobot personalities (particularly Jazzz) are *very* Earth-oriented, and would seem (ironically) "out of place" if the series were set totally on the alien planet.

We feel that a combination of cybertron and Earth locales would be most desirable for the series, with concurrent action taking place on both planet to provide a larger arena for an extended series.

Since Cybertron has been established as being in another, distant galaxy, we considered some different methods of bridging the gap, so that plot lines can interconnect between locales without the hassle of a "six-month space trip" in conventional rocket transport systems:

1) The Autobots and/or Decepticons alter the mechanics of cybertron to make it less of a planet and more of a spacecraft (i.e. the "Deathstar of STAR WARS), and bring it into Earth's orbit, opposite the sun. Transport between locales would still be rocket-oriented (appealing to boy viewers) but the distance is shortened (maybe a half-hour space trip?!)


2) The Cybertrons create a "space bridge," perhaps using the Teletraan screen or some other molecular-transport device, as sort of a magical doorway between the two worlds. Using this method, Decepticons, who might have control of the device on Cybertron could strike anywhere on Earth (or anywhere in the universe, for that matter) at a moment's notice. Autobots could slip through (drive through?!) the "doorway" to return to Cybertron and foil the evil robots' plans.

Although the specials do not aid in setting this up, it seems natural for the Decepticons to use Cybertron as their headquarters. There is no humanity or organic growth on Cybertron -- only the cold, metallic machinery of its landscape -- and the idea of Autobots as rebels on their own planet (as presented in the beginning sequence of the specials) is very appealing. We suggest the Autobots have their headquarters on Earth, perhaps as some kind of underground garage beneath a mountain. Autobots, however, will usually be on patrol in their four-wheeled forms, on the lookout for Decepticons.


The robot charactrs as presented in the specials need sharper definitions of their personalities and powers, but are basically fine and can adapt to most any conceptual variation. Although Hasbro undoubtedly expects to use all of their product characters in the series, certain personalities will inevitably emerge as "leading players" who will carry the main action, whil others will remain "supporting characters." While a "starting line-up" of leading characters will have to be determined, it seems desirable to keep these decisions flexible, in order for the best mix of characters to emerge naturally. We suggest using the characters in the network presentation (with the exception of the female robots, which were added for the network) as a starting point.


This is the area in which we have the most freedom to create new characters and situations. Realizing that our eightenn Autobots (count 'em -- 18) and numerous Decepticons are the stars and central action figures of the show, we strongly suggest limiting the number of humans as regular characters in the series to one or two.

We suggest the main character be a fifteen-year-old boy modeled after SPIKE in the specials and /or EDDIE FAIRCHILD in the network presentation. This is the character with whom the audience will identify. There are several variations of this which would alter the series' approach:

1) The boy has been orphaned by the evil Decepticons and makes the Autobots his new family. Optimus Prime is his father figure, and little Bumblebee is like a brother. The Autobots, in turn, treat the boy like an integral part of their group, always remembering he is not a machine but a living organism. He is their introduction to humans. This situation gives the boy even stronger motivation for siding with the Autobots and getting revenge on the robots who took away his family.

2) If we wish to use SPIKE as the boy character, we might continue using his father, SPARKPLUG. Perhaps father and son might be continually separated, the Decepticons having captured the father and are using his knowledge of Earth to further their nefarious goals, as well as keeping Spike and the Autobots at bay by using Sparkplug as a hostage. A good brainwashing or a few replaced circuits embedded in the brain might even get him on their side, causing great emotional conflict for our leading human character. (This may be a bit too reminiscent of the Luke Skywalker/Darth Vador relationship, but it makes for powerful drama and could be considered as a separate story idea for a "mini-series" like those in G.I. JOE.)

3) If we include an older brother figure (a la MATT CONROY in the network presentation) we might make the younger boy more dependent on the Autobots, perhaps even giving him a handicap. For example, if the boy is partially paralyzed, he might depend on the Autobots for transportation, using jetpacks for getting around outside of the vehicles. The boy's handicap would not be emphasized -- but could help the writers create more perilous situations, as well as strengthening the relationship between the boy and the machines.

And it certainly would be something different in an animated series.

4) We strongly considered giving the boy an animal companion for interaction with the robots and to add comecy relief. We also debated the possibility of including a younger sister or other regular female character. We rejected both notions because we felt they were unnecessary complications that were overly familiar with viewers.


The Decepticons, based on the planet Cybertron, aim for universal domination by their own machine-like form, which they consider to be the most efficient and desirable means of existence. In order to achieve this goal, they commute between their headquarters and the planet Earth, from which they get their energy sources and spare machinery parts to replicate themselves. Humans are of little consequence to them -- people make lousy robots and reluctant slaves -- but they need to be controlled and subjugated. The Decepticon takeover of the Earth, as described in the network presentation, is just beginning. The evil robots use their transformation powers as disguises to inflitrate and conquer human society, as well as to steal the planet's resources and battle the Autobots.

The Autobot are "user-friendly" machines who realize the value of working with the Earthlings for their mutual benefit. They protect the people of this planet from the Decepticons. In exchange, the Autobots learn about compassion, bravery, and other values of humanity. Only Optimus Prime truly understands the value of working with the young boy who is our major character. The other Autobots respect this; they somehow know that Autobots do not exist on energized power cells alone -- there is a greater purpose for all life forms than mere mechanical efficiency.


Although the three half-hour specials are considered to be an introduction to the series, any changes in the presentation will have to be introduced--at least in the main titles--and some are possibilities for stories:

The introduction of the "space bridge" which lets Decepticons from Cybertron transverse the galaxies to earth in seconds could be the basis of a story where the Autobots return to their home planet through this previously-unknown device and try to thwart the Decepticons' plans.

The separation of the boy and his father--or family--and the meeting of the Autobots and our central character under trying circumstances could be dramatized.

HUMANS Although only two human characters are established as series regulars, other humans should be included in the stories as "guest star" characters, and may later be repeated.

SPIKE WITWICKY is a fourteen-year-old boy who, like most boys his age, has big dreams about almost everything. Unfortunately, his lofty ambitions do not coincide with his father's more practical hopes for his son. Spike has no great interest in mechanics, and no natural inclination for learning how things work--he'd rather know WHY they work. He has an artist's heart, and he relates better with the Autobots' personalities than his father ever will. Spike has a great respect for Optimus Prime, and he shares the Autobots' intense hatred for the Decepticons because he understands their purpose and ideals more than he admires their powers and abilities.

"SPARKPLUG" WITWICKY is a middle-aged widower, and a natural born mechanic who loves to take things apart or put them back together, and can fix just about anything. A rough, rowdy guy, Sparkplug has a deep, unspoken affection for his son, but cannot understand why his boy doesn't share his interest for the practical things in life. Sparkplug sees the Autobots as ultimate machines and is amazed by their abilities. He supports them in their battle against the Decepticons, although he is just as impressed by the evil robots' technical structures. Never formally educated, Sparkplug relies on his instincts and basic mechanical know-how to survive.

CHIP is Spike's best friend, first introduced in Episode #2, "Roll for it." He is a computer genius who can operate almost any memory bank set in front of him, including Teletraan I. Spike is envious of his ability to alter and create new functions for computerized machines--often done with Wheeljack's help. Although his scientific talents are great, Chip is physically handicapped--paralyzed from the waist down--and must be confined to a wheelchair. This makes his especially vulnerable during Decepticon attack--although his courage shines through in any desperate situation.

CARLY, a year older than Spike, could be called Spike's girlfriend--but not to her face! First seen in MP#700-21 "The Immobilizer," Carly was always more interested in the Auotobots than in Spike (to Spike's dismay), although she appreciates his friendship. Like Chip, Carly's scientific knowledge is great--but it extends more in the chemical/electrical/mechanical areas of science than computer knowledge. Carly is almost too self-assured, and her curiosity often leads her--and Spike--into dangerous situations. Impulsive and apt to act on her own instincts, Carly often disappears from the others with a plan of her own--usually some bold, bordering-on-foolish attempt to aid her friends. 

Dork Note: Check out the Secret History of the Transformers by Jim Shooter 

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