Transformers: Animated

This article is about the 2007-2009 animated "Transformers" series. For animated Transformers series in general, see List of Transformers TV series.
Transformers: Animated

Show poster, displaying the five main Autobots in robot and vehicle modes
Genre Action
Science fiction
Created by Hasbro
Written by Todd Casey
Rich Fogel
Henry Gilroy
Steve Granat
Marsha F. Griffin
Kevin Hopps
Marty Isenberg
Andrew Robinson
Michael Ryan
Directed by Chris Berkeley
Ben Jones
Irineo Maramba
Kintaro Mizuono
Ciro Nieli
Shunji Oga
Keo Thongkham
Matt Youngberg
Voices of Jeff Bennett
Corey Burton
Bill Fagerbakke
David Kaye
Tom Kenny
Bumper Robinson
Tara Strong
Cree Summer
Theme music composer Andy Sturmer
Opening theme "Transformers: Main Theme"
Ending theme "Transformers: Main Theme" (Instrumental)
Composer(s) Sebastian Evans II
Country of origin United States
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 3[1]
No. of episodes 42 (list of episodes)
Executive producer(s) Sam Register
Brian Goldner
Producer(s) Vincent Aniceto
Matt Youngberg (supervising producer)
Running time 22–23 minutes
Production company(s) The Answerstudio Co., Ltd.[2]
Studio 4°C
Cartoon Network Studios
Distributor Hasbro Studios
(English license)
Paramount Television
Takara Tomy
(Japanese license)
NBCUniversal Television Distribution
(worldwide TV, except North America/Japan)
Original network Cartoon Network
Original release December 26, 2007 (2007-12-26) – May 23, 2009 (2009-05-23)

Transformers Animated (トランスフォーマー アニメイテッド Toransufōmā Animeiteddo) is a Japanese/American animated television series based on the Transformers toy line. It is produced by Cartoon Network Studios and animated by The Answer Studio, MOOK DLE., and Studio 4°C. The series debuted on Cartoon Network on December 26, 2007 and ended on May 23, 2009. In Japan, the show debuted on April 3, 2010, on both TV Aichi and TV Tokyo.[3]

The series has 42 episodes (two sets of three interrelated episodes make up two 90-minute made for TV movies) across three seasons, with many fanservice references to other Transformers shows.[4]

The show's continuity is separate from any other previous Transformers series, despite using footage from the first series (The Transformers) in its first episode as a historical film. The Japanese version of the cartoon was slightly rewritten to tie into Michael Bay's Transformers film series. Despite being a Cartoon Network original series, the show was aired on Nicktoons in the UK since February 2008, Jetix/Disney XD in the rest of Europe from September 10, 2008 and, finally, back in the U.S. on The Hub, now known as Discovery Family in high definition until 2014.


Pilot episodes

The series began with a three-part pilot called "Transform and Roll Out!". Stellar cycles (centuries) after the Autobots won the great war for Cybertron against the Decepticons, an Autobot maintenance crew led by Optimus Prime and consisting of Ratchet, Bulkhead, Prowl, and Bumblebee discover the legendary Allspark buried on an asteroid. The Autobots take the Allspark back to their ship, but are soon confronted by a crew of Decepticons led by the notorious warlord Megatron and consisting of Blitzwing, Lugnut, Blackarachnia, and Starscream. Megatron attacks the Autobot ship and tries to retrieve the Allspark, but when an explosive planted on Megatron by the treacherous Starscream detonates, the ship crashes on Earth. The Autobots go into stasis to survive the crash, while the scattered remains of Megatron are discovered by a human scientist named Isaac Sumdac.

Fifty years later, Professor Sumdac is the CEO of a robotics company known as Sumdac Systems, which is based in a futuristic version of Detroit. Optimus Prime and the Autobots awaken from stasis and defend the people of Detroit from a monster, resulting in them becoming local celebrities. They befriend Sumdac's young daughter Sari, who teaches them about Earth customs. At the end of the pilot episodes, Starscream arrives on Earth and tries to take the Allspark for himself, but the Autobots successfully stop him and save the city once again.

Season One

In the first season, the Autobots settle into their new home and learn about Earth culture and customs, all of the while defending Detroit from various threats. Megatron's disembodied head, which has been in Professor Sumdac's laboratory since the ship crashed, comes back online and manipulates Sumdac into building him a new body, pretending that he is an Autobot. Blitzwing and Lugnut arrive on Earth searching for Megatron, while Blackarachnia targets Optimus Prime, blaming him for her techno-organic mutation. New Transformers introduced in the first season include the Autobot Arcee (who only appears in Ratchet's flashbacks), the Decepticon Soundwave, the bounty-hunter Lockdown, and the Dinobots Grimlock, Snarl, and Swoop. Several human villains are also introduced, including Nanosec (who can run at extreme speeds), the Headmaster (who pilots a machine that attaches to and controls large robots) and Meltdown (who is covered in a toxic and corrosive substance). The season ends with Megatron returning with a new body (built by the Allspark from his old body), and the Allspark exploding into fragments that scatter across Detroit.

Season Two

In the second season, the Autobot Elite Guard members Ultra Magnus, Sentinel Prime, and Jazz arrive on Earth to retrieve the Allspark, only to learn of its destruction in the Season One finale. While Sentinel completely disbelieves Optimus's claims, Optimus and his team are eventually able to convince Magnus of Decepticon activity on Earth. The main theme for Season Two is the discovery of small fragments of the Allspark littered across the city (and possibly, the entire planet), while the Decepticons work on building a space bridge back to Cybertron with the help of Issac Sumdac, who was kidnapped by Megatron in the previous season's finale. This is part of Megatron's plan to invade Cybertron from within, without the Autobots' awareness. New characters introduced in season 2 include the Autobots Omega Supreme (who was revealed to be Optimus Prime's team's spaceship), Wreck-Gar, Wasp and Blurr, the Decepticons Shockwave, Swindle, Mixmaster and Scrapper, the human villain Slo-Mo (who is able to slow down time), and Starscream's army of clones Thundercracker, Ramjet, Skywarp, Sunstorm, and Slipstream (none of the clones are openly referred to by name in the series, the names listed come from the toy-line, while Slipstream was retroactively given her name by Hasbro). At the end of the season, the Decepticon Space Bridge is destroyed, but Megatron, Starscream, and Omega Supreme are sucked through and lost in deep space. Sari meanwhile, notices an injury that exposes mechanical parts under her skin, revealing that she is not completely human.

Season Three

Following the events of the two-part second season finale, Sari is shocked and distraught over the revelation that she is a robot, and instantly assumes that her "father" had built her, refusing to believe Sumdac's claim that he discovered her as a small liquid metal body. Prowl does some research and discovers that Professor Sumdac was in fact telling the truth, and deduces that Sari is a Cybertronian protoform (the early development stage of an Autobot and Decepticon) that scanned Professor Sumdac's genetic information. Sari later uses the power from her AllSpark-powered key to upgrade herself into an armored techno-organic teenage form that is far taller and much stronger equipped with numerous weapons and special abilities.

Meanwhile, on Cybertron, Shockwave (disguised as the Autobot Longarm Prime) sabotages several Elite Guard operations in preparation for Megatron's return, unaware that Megatron and Starscream are lost in deep space, trying to gain control of Omega Supreme. Suspecting that the double-agent may be the escaped convict Wasp, Ultra Magnus sends Sentinel and Jazz back to Earth to find and apprehend Wasp, who has found his way to Earth to exact revenge on Bumblebee for framing him. Soundwave and Arcee reappear in season 3, with Soundwave being accompanied by minions Laserbeak and Ratbat. New characters introduced in season 3 include the Constructicon Dirt Boss, the Autobot scientist Perceptor, Prowl's mentor Yoketron (who only appears in Prowl's memory flashes), and the Elite Guard members Jetstorm and Jetfire.

In the two-part season finale, Jazz joins Optimus Prime's team on Earth, while Megatron and Starscream also find their way back to Earth, using information stored deep winin Arcee's subconscious mind to create an army of Omega Supreme-sized robots in Lugnut's likeness. Optimus defeats Megatron with the aid of Ultra Magnus' Magnus Hammer and a "Wingblade" jetpack built by Professor Sumdac, Ratchet, and Sari while Prowl sacrifices himself to re-assemble the Allspark and destroy the "Lugnut Supremes". The Autobots return to Cybertron with the apprehended Decepticons, and are hailed as heroes upon arriving on their home world.

Season Four

A fourth season was initially planned and intended, but was cancelled. According to Transformers Animated: The AllSpark Almanac II, season four's main theme would have been the discovery of Energon deposits left by the Allspark across Detroit. Optimus Prime, Bumblebee, Jazz and Ratchet would have returned to Earth along with new team member Ironhide (who would scan a pick-up truck vehicle mode resembling the live-action film version of the character), while Bulkhead and Sari would have remained on Cybertron, with Sari discovering more about her unique origins and Cybertronian species, and Bulkhead defending Cybertron's energon farms from the Decepticons. Megatron would also reformat into a new, Triple-Changer body, with his new vehicle modes being a fighter jet and a tank, both of which would be Cybertronian. An action figure was designed for Megatron's new body (along with figures for Powermaster Optimus Prime and Hot Shot's earth mode), but was never mass-produced or released at retail. Megatron would have broken out of Trypticon Prison on Cybertron and relocate the city of Kaon to Earth, using the Energon deposits to build machinations that could threaten all life on the planet.

Other ideas planned for the cancelled fourth season include Blackarachnia returning with an army of Predacons, Bulkhead and Sari entering a parallel universe with evil Autobots and heroic Decepticons (an homage to the Shattered Glass comic), Minicons from Kaon disabling all the machinery in Detroit (an homage to the film Gremlins), the introductions of the Autobot Cosmos (who would have scanned a prop flying saucer from the set of a B-Movie) and the Decepticon Bludgeon (who would have been a pirate), and a new group of human villains called S.T.E.A.M. (short for Saving The Earth And Mankind), who are against modern technology and use Steampunk-style weaponry.

Return to The Hub

The Hub started airing reruns of the show on July 9, 2012, in its original HD format until mid-2014.


The main Autobots are Optimus Prime, Prowl, Ratchet, Bulkhead, and Bumblebee. The main Decepticon cast is made up of Megatron, Starscream, Blitzwing, Lugnut, and Blackarachnia. The main humans, or as the Transformers call them, "organics",[5] are Professor Isaac Sumdac, Sari Sumdac, and Captain Fanzone.

Comic/manga adaptation

Transformers Animated was adapted into comics and published by IDW Publishing in 2008. The book used cartoon screen captures arranged in comic book style panels. In Japan, a manga adaptation titled Transformers Animated: The Cool (トランスフォーマー アニメイテッド ザ・クール Toransufōmā Animeiteddo: Za Kūru) was created by Naoto Tsushima and serialized in Kadokawa Shoten's Kerokero Ace magazine from March 26, 2010 to March 26, 2011.



The series is animated by Japanese animation studios MOOK DLE, The Answer Studio (the Japanese studio that animated Super Robot Monkey Team Hyperforce Go!), and Studio 4°C.

Formerly known by the working title Transformers: Heroes, its new simplified title was designed to specifically distinguish it from the live-action film released in July 2007, months before the first episode aired.[4] The series is distributed internationally by Entertainment Rights.[7]

The show's supervising director is Matt Youngberg (Teen Titans, The Batman),[8] with Cartoon Network vice-president Sam Register as an executive producer and Vincent Aniceto as a line producer. Additionally, Beast Machines writer Marty Isenberg returned as the head writer for this series. Art director and lead character designer Derrick J. Wyatt (Teen Titans, Ben 10: Omniverse, and Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated) created the controversial "brand new look" that this series introduces.

The first episode was due to be screened in full on November 3–4, 2007, at the NTFA Mini-Con, a Transformers convention in Arlöv, Sweden, but US toymaker Hasbro pulled their approval of the screening of the full episode, despite it being green-lighted by Hasbro Nordic at first. The episode had to be cut down to the first 11 minutes.[9][10]

After the series' normal run began in January 2008, the first two seasons were aired nearly back-to-back, creating nearly a year-long delay in between the second and third seasons. The long-awaited final season finally premiered in North America on March 14, 2009, with a 90-minute (three episode) special. After a lack of communication and much speculation, it was officially announced at BotCon 2009 that the series was over, at least in a televised format.

During the production of the show, voice actor David Kaye (Optimus Prime) was living in Vancouver, Canada and flying to California once a week for nine months straight. This led him to a decision to move to California permanently.

A guidebook for the show, The Allspark Almanac, was released in 2009 and covers the first two seasons of the show. A second guidebook, The Allspark Almanac II, was released in the following year and covers the third and final season of the show. In March 2015, a compilation of the two almanacs, titled The Complete Allspark Almanac, was released. It contains all information from the previous almanacs, along with some differences and additions.

Japanese version

While Transformers Animated had aired and completed its run in many other territories, the release of the series in Japan had been delayed. However, on December 18, 2009, it was announced through the launch of the official website that Takara Tomy would be bringing the series to Japan come Spring 2010.[3] Later, TV Aichi confirmed the exact date of broadcast, which was April 3, 2010, at 8:00AM on the TV Tokyo Network.[11] The website had launched with very little content available, with a trailer and wallpaper of Optimus Prime, later with adding Bumblebee media.

As with the movie when released in Japan, Takara Tomy is not renaming Optimus to Convoy as they have done in past properties. However, in a solicitation preview of the key chains, Bulkhead was renamed as Ironhide in toy version.[12] The name change was done because this version the series has been rewritten to flow with the live-action Transformers film series, with Bulkhead being portrayed into a younger version of Ironhide while the show's Ironhide is renamed Armorhide. Human characters are also renamed like Nanosec into Speed King in the Japanese version. In addition, some of the episodes have been reordered, or removed, to fit with the change in story. Notably, the episodes focusing on the Constructicons have been omitted, likely due to the lack of toys based on the characters (though the last Constructicon-focused episode was aired anyway). Despite all these edits, little actually suggests a tie-in to the films, as the dub is mostly faithful to the original American broadcast; the only mention of Bulkhead's new identity as Ironhide is a toy biography stating that he is a weapons specialist.

In addition, the series features newly animated opening and ending sequences. The opening theme is "TRANSFORMERS EVO." performed by JAM Project, while the ending theme is "AXEL TRANSFORMERS" by Rey.


Main cast

Additional voices


Home video releases

North America

The North American releases feature full-screen video and stereo sound in both English and Spanish (except Season Three and The Complete Series (both feature widescreen video and stereo sound in only English)).

A single DVD containing the feature-length premiere "Transform and Roll Out".
Also includes the first two unaired shorts, "Career Day" and "Evel Knievel Jump".
  • A Target exclusive version came with a second disc containing the follow-up episode "Home Is Where the Spark Is".
A two-disc set containing the complete first season, from "Home Is Where the Spark Is" to "Megatron Rising Part II".
Also includes a season 2 "sneak peek" photo gallery.
A two-disc set containing the complete second season, from "The Elite Guard" to "A Bridge to Close Part II", with audio commentary on selected episodes.
Also includes the shorts "Starscream Heckles Megatron" and "Explosive Punch" and a photo gallery.
Shout! Factory released the third season on DVD on June 10 as well as the complete series afterwards.

United Kingdom

Whereas in North America the series was released in complete seasons, the UK instead got several single-disc "volumes" containing four episodes each, also featuring full-screen video, but with audio and subtitles in English and German.

Contains the feature-length premiere "Transform and Roll Out" and the shorts "Career Day" and "Evel Knievel Jump".
Contains episodes 4 Home Is Where the Spark Is, 5 Total Meltdown, 6 Blast From the Past and 7 Thrill of the Hunt
Contains episodes 8 Nanosac, 9 Along Came a Spider, 10 Sound and Fury, 11 Lost and Found
Contains episodes 12 Survival of the Fittest, 13 Headmaster, 14 Nature Calls 15 Megatron Rising Part 1 and 16 Megatron Rising Part 2
Contains episodes 17 The Elite Guard, 18 Return of the Headmaster, 19 Mission Accomplished and 20 Garbage In, Garbage Out
Contains episodes 21 Velocity, 22 Rise of the Constructicons, 23 A Fistful of Energon and 24 S.U.V - Society of Ultimate Villany
Contains episodes 25 Autoboot Camp, 26 Black Friday, 27 Sari, No One's Home, 28 A Bridge Too Close, Part 1 and 29 A Bridge Too Close, Part 2


Germany saw the same releases as the UK.

Contains the feature-length premiere "Transform and Roll Out" and the shorts "Career Day" and "Evel Knievel Jump".
Contains the episodes "Home Is Where the Spark Is" through to "The Thrill of the Hunt".
Contains the episodes "Nanosec" through to "Lost and Found".
Contains the episodes "Survival of the Fittest" through to "Megatron Rising - Part 2"
Contains the episodes "The Elite Guard" through to "Garbage In, Garbage Out"
Contains the episodes "Velocity" through to "SUV: Society of Ultimate Villainy"
Contains the episodes "Autoboot Camp" through to "A Bridge Too Close, Part II"


In a press release by Takara Tomy, it was announced that starting in Fall 2010, they would be releasing the series on DVD by Paramount Home Media Distribution.[32]

Video game

This is the first (and only) Transformers Animated game. Released for the Nintendo DS platform in October 2008.


Country Channel
 Canada YTV
 United States Cartoon Network, Discovery Family
 United Kingdom NickToons
 Germany Jetix, Super RTL
 Mexico Cartoon Network,
 Czech Republic
 Costa Rica
 El Salvador
 Mexico Canal de las Estrellas, Azteca Trece
 Netherlands Jetix, Animax
 Portugal TVI, Canal Panda, Animax
 Serbia Happy TV
 Malaysia TV3, Cartoon Network (Southeast Asia)
 Bulgaria bTV, Jetix, Nova Television
 Slovenia POP TV
 Brazil Cartoon Network, Rede Globo HD
 Poland Jetix, Sunrise
 Philippines Cartoon Network, GMA 7, TV5
 Australia Cartoon Network and Network Ten (On Toasted TV)
 Israel Jetix
Arab World Countries MBC 3
 France Gulli
 India Cartoon Network
 Italy Mediaset Italia 1
 Russia Jetix, STS, Cartoon Network
 Finland MTV3
 Thailand Cartoon Network
 Turkey Cartoon Network (Turkey)
 Indonesia Global TV, RCTI, Cartoon Network (Southeast Asia)
 Taiwan Cartoon Network
 Japan TV Tokyo, TV Aichi (Both beginning April 3, 2010), etc.
 Pakistan and  Bangladesh Cartoon Network
 Romania Cartoon Network and Jetix
 Armenia and  Nagorno-Karabakh Republic Shant


  1. "Entertainment Rights picks up more Transformers". 2008-10-22. Retrieved 2008-10-26.
  2. "The Answerstudio". Retrieved 5 October 2014.
  3. 1 2 "Takara Tomy's Transformers Animated Website". Retrieved 2009-12-18.
  4. 1 2 "News: April 14, 2007". Archived from the original on 2007-05-19. Retrieved 2007-06-10.
  5. "Transform and Roll Out!". Transformers Animated. Season 1. Episode 1, 2, 3. 2007-12-16. Cartoon Network.
  6. 1 2 Transformers Animated: The AllSpark Almanac
  7. "ER picks up new Transformers". 2007-05-08. Retrieved 2007-06-10.
  8. "Transformers Animated Coming to Cartoon Network". 2007-06-25. Retrieved 2007-06-25.
  9. "NTFA Forums: TF Animated to premiere at the Mini-Con!". Retrieved 5 October 2014.
  10. "TFW2005 Boards: New Transformers Animated Series details revealed at NTFA Mini-Con". Retrieved 5 October 2014.
  11. "TV Aichi's Transformers Animated Website". Retrieved 2010-01-18.
  12. "TakaraTomy Transformers Animated Key Chains!". Retrieved 2009-12-29.
  13. "Jeff Bennett (I) – Filmography by TV series". 2008-12-07. Retrieved 2008-12-07.
  14. "Corey Burton (I) – Filmography by TV series".
  15. "Bill Fagerbakke – Filmography by TV series". 2008-12-07. Retrieved 2008-12-07.
  16. "David Kaye (I) – Filmography by TV series". 2008-12-07. Retrieved 2008-12-07.
  17. "Tom Kenny (I) – Filmography by TV series". 2008-12-07. Retrieved 2008-12-07.
  18. "Bumper Robinson – Filmography by TV series". 2008-12-07. Retrieved 2008-12-07.
  19. "Tara Strong – Filmography by TV series". 2008-12-07. Retrieved 2008-12-07.
  20. "Cree Summer – Filmography by TV series". 2008-12-07. Retrieved 2008-12-07.
  21. "Susan Blu – Filmography by TV series". 2008-12-07. Retrieved 2008-12-07.
  22. "Townsend Coleman – Filmography by TV series". 2008-12-07. Retrieved 2008-12-07.
  23. "Lance Henriksen – Filmography by TV series". 2008-12-07. Retrieved 2008-12-07.
  24. "Phil LaMarr – Filmography by TV series". 2008-12-07. Retrieved 2008-12-07.
  25. "John Mariano – Filmography by TV series". 2008-12-07. Retrieved 2008-12-07.
  26. "John Moschitta Jr. – Filmography by TV series". 2008-12-07. Retrieved 2008-12-07.
  27. "Judd Nelson – Filmography by TV series". 2008-12-07. Retrieved 2008-12-07.
  28. "Kevin Michael Richardson – Filmography by TV series". 2008-12-07. Retrieved 2008-12-07.
  29. "George Takei – Filmography by TV series". 2008-12-07. Retrieved 2008-12-07.
  30. "Fred Willard – Filmography by TV series". 2008-12-07. Retrieved 2008-12-07.
  31. "'Weird Al' Yankovic – Filmography by TV series". 2008-12-07. Retrieved 2008-12-07.
  32. "Takara Tomy's Transformers Animated Press Release - 1/19/10" (PDF). Retrieved 2010-01-20.

External links

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