Bumblebee (Generation 1)

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Bumblebee/Goldbug
Transformers character
Bumblebee-g1-box.jpg
Generation 1 Bumblebee on card
First appearance

Transformers #1 by Marvel Comics
Voiced by

Dan Gilvezan
Information
Aliases Bumble (Japan), Goldbug, Goldfire
Species Transformer
Gender Male
Abilities

Affiliation

Autobot
Alternate mode

Cybertronian car, Volkswagon Beetle, Suzuki Swift, sports car
Function

Espionage
Motto

"The least likely can be the most dangerous."
Partner

Blazemaster
Series

Smallest Transformers
Transformers: Alternity
Transformers Classic
Transformers: Generation 1
Transformers: Generation 2
Transformers: Generations
Transformers: Reveal the Shield
Transformers: Titanium
Transformers: United
Transformers: Universe
Sub-group

Action Masters, Legends, Pretenders, Deluxe Vehicles
Tech specs

ST02 IN08 SP04 EN07

RN07 CO10 FB01 SK07

Bumblebee is the name of several fictional character from the Transformers series. The original Bumblebee was introduced in 1984 as a character in the Generation 1 stories. He was a small, yellow Autobot who served as the kid appeal character. He served as a regular in the comic and animated series. In 1987 his character was revamped and he took on the new name Goldbug, but eventually he returned to his original name.

Transformers: Generaton 1

The original Bumblebee character was introduced in 1984 as part of what became known later as Generation 1. He was the smallest of the original Autobots and served as an espionage specialist in the fiction, as well as being made the kid appeal character in the animated series.

Bumblebee turned into a yellow 1970s model Volkswagon Beetle.

Fictional biography

Profile: Bumblebee is the Autobots' little brother. He's small, eager and at times can be a bit of a smart-mouth. Yet for all his wisecracks, he obviously idolizes the bigger robots, especially Optimus and Prowl. He is useful as a messenger and a spy; he can go where other vehicles would not dare because he does not look threatening. And his relatively small size occasionally enables him to use routes not available to the others. More than anything, Bumblebee wants to be accepted, and this sometimes causes him to take chances he shouldn't.

Abilities: As he can get up to 1.8 times more use out of a unit of fuel than the next most efficient Autobot, Bumblebee is often called upon at times of low energy resources. His visual acuity rates tops of all Autobots: he can spot a 10" × 10" object at a distance of 48 miles on a clear day. His adaptability to water environments makes him particularly important in undersea reconnaissance and salvage operations.

Weaknesses: Bumblebee is physically the weakest of the Autobots, and the most easily damaged. His stealth more than compensates for this liability.

Animated series

The Transformers

Bumblebee holds the distinction of being the second character to appear on-screen in the original Transformers animated series, while on a mission to recover a small clutch of energy conductors with Wheeljack, illustrating the energy crisis holding sway over their home planet of Cybertron. Bumblebee is subsequently among the Transformers aboard the Ark as it set off searching for new worlds and new energy sources, which crashed on Earth, causing the Transformers within to be trapped in stasis for four million years. Awakening in 1984, Bumblebee helps Ironhide quell a raging river and uses his small size to help Sparkplug Witwicky plant explosives in the midst of a Decepticon mining operation.

He later befriends Sparkplug's son Spike, but on their first adventure together they are both kidnapped by the Decepticons, and Bumblebee is brainwashed into luring the other Autobots into a trap.

In episode 4, "Transport to Oblivion" During the Decepticon development of their space bridge program, Bumblebee and Spike were spying on the enemy for Optimus Prime. They accidentally tumbled into the ravine where Megatron was launching his test flights for the bridge, and they were almost forced to act as test pilots before the window of operation closed. The two heroes briefly escaped but were recaptured, and Megatron altered a bank of Bumblebee's memory circuits to lure the Autobots into a trap. Bumblebee was injured during the Decepticon ambush, giving Ratchet a chance to examine his circuits and discover the altered portion of his memory. Bumblebee recovered in time to alert the Autobots to the true location of the space bridge and rescue Spike before he was sent on a one-way trip to Cybertron.

In episode 5 "Roll for It", having bonded after their adventure with the space bridge, Bumblebee and Spike were virtually inseparable for the next 20-odd years. Bumblebee escorted Spike and his boy-genius friend Chip Chase to the laboratory where Chip was assisting Doctor Alcazar in developing his antimatter formula. On their way back, they were attacked by Laserbeak, alerting them to the fact that the Decepticons were after the antimatter formula on which Chip had been working. After Chip was captured by the Decepticons, Bumblebee and Spike mounted a rescue with the help of Mirage and Hound.

In episode 6 "Divide and Conquer", after Optimus Prime was dramatically injured by an explosion, Bumblebee volunteered with Ironhide, Trailbreaker and Bluestreak to take the Decepticon space bridge to Cybertron to retrieve a new cosmitron. Though they gained entrance to Wheeljack's workshop with Chip's help and retrieved the required component, the group was debilitated by the Rainmakers' acid rain. After a pep talk from Chip, they were able to return to Earth through the space bridge, and Bumblebee rushed the cosmitron back to headquarters.

Bumblebee in "Changing Gears"

In episode 51, "Prime Target", the big game hunter Lord Cholmondeley captures a secret Soviet jet, leading to panic of possible war. Cholmondeley then set his sights on the ultimate trophy, the head of Optimus Prime. In order to lure Optimus in, Cholmondeley captures Bumblebee and several other Autobots. Optimus Prime accepts Cholmondeley's challenge and defeats the big game hunter, freeing the Autobots.

In episode 59, "Trans-Europe Express", a charity auto race from Paris, France, to Istanbul, Turkey, is held. The Autobots Bluestreak, Bumblebee, Sideswipe, Smokescreen, Sunstreaker, Tracks, and Wheeljack participate alongside several human racers including Augie Canay. Meanwhile, Megatron has discovered the whereabouts of the Pearl of Bahudine, the power core of a Cybertronian weather control machine. Megatron has the Stunticons eliminate the Autobots from the race while stealing Augie's car to use its experimental engine's metal to make a control device for the pearl. Bluestreak, Tracks, Bumblebee and Augie are able to stop the Decepticons by unleashing the power of the pearl, but to stop the pearl Bumblebee has to destroy it. Augie has the gold shell of the pearl sold and the money given to charity when he learns the race was a fake set up by the Decepticons merely to get his car.

By the time of The Transformers: The Movie, set in 2005, the Autobots have been forced off of Cybertron, and Bumblebee and Spike man Moonbase Two on one of the planet's satellites as the Autobots prepare a strike to take back the planet. The attack is scuppered by the sudden appearance of the giant planet-eating robot Unicron, who consumes Moonbase One. As Unicron turns on their moon, Spike and Bumblebee set a cache of explosives to detonate in his maw and abandon the base in a small shuttle, but the detonation fails to even scratch the chaos-bringer and he inhales their ship. Deep in his digestive system, the pair are trapped on a conveyor that threatens to drop them in an acid vat, but they are saved by Spike's son Daniel, and they and the other Autobots escape Unicron's body as it is destroyed through the power of the Autobot Matrix of Leadership.

Bumblebee was one of the few characters from the beginning of the series to continue appearing in the show's third season, set in 2006, in which he could regularly be found performing duties in Autobot City on Earth. He and Spike are reunited for another adventure when the ghost of Starscream invades the city in order to steal the eyes of the giant Autobot Metroplex, but they are unable to stop the villain from accomplishing his task.

When the body of the deceased Optimus Prime is recovered from space by a pair of Transformer-hating human scientists who intend to use it to lure the Autobots into a trap, Bumblebee is part of the rescue team led by Rodimus Prime to recover it. Entering the lab, some of the Transformers are exposed to rage-inducing alien spores that cause them to run wild, and although Bumblebee avoids infection, he is seriously damaged by the rampaging Superion. A member of the alien race called the Quintessons subsequently repair and restore Optimus Prime to life, so he can stop the "Hate Plague" and repair Bumblebee. The little Autobot has been so severely damaged, however, that he requires an entire reconstruction. In his new, shiny body, he comments that he has gone beyond just being Bumblebee, and is now a "gold bug", prompting Optimus Prime to redub him Goldbug. Goldbug travels with Optimus Prime to the planet of Chaar in order to secure a heat resistant alloy that can protect him from the plague, only to be infected on the mission and later cured when Prime uses the power of the Matrix to purge the plague. Goldbug also makes a brief appearance in the fourth and final season of the series, defending Autobot City and Cybertron against a massive Decepticon attack.

Transformers: The Headmasters

In Transformers: The Headmasters, Goldbug and the Throttlebots were on Cybertron when Vector Sigma began to destabilize as a consequence of Optimus Prime releasing the Matrix's energy to cure the Hate Plague the previous year. The Decepticons soon invaded the planet in an attempt to take control of the computer, and Goldbug and the Throttlebots joined Grimlock and Slag in holding the line against them. Unfortunately, they were knocked unconscious by the hypnotic power of the new Decepticon Headmaster Mindwipe, but they had managed to delay the Decepticons long enough for the Autobot Headmasters to arrive and take up the fight.

Later, when the Decepticon Headmasters unleashed the Madmachine upon Cybertron, Goldbug and the Throttlebots helped the Autobot Headmasters battle the villains. Hit by a blast of the evil device's electromagnetic beams, the Throttlebots were left in convulsions, opening them up to an attack by the Decepticons. Wideload and Rollbar were again affected by Mindwipe's hypnotism and were instructed to fight each other, but Goldbug was able to get between them and snap them out of it. Goldbug proceeded to get his team organized, and he and Rollbar took on Mindwipe, clinging on to him and preventing him from flying away as they beat him up.

Goldbug and the Throttlebots went up against the Decepticon Headmasters yet again in a later battle on Earth, but pretended to lose so that they would be left free to investigate the Decepticons' newest weapon: a metal-warping meteor currently on collision course with Athenia. Disregarding Rodimus Prime's instructions to keep their distance, the Throttlebots believed they would be heroes if they could stop the meteor, but no sooner had they got within range of the space-rock than its gravity boosters began twisting and warping their ship and their bodies.

Predaking fights the Throttlebots Freeway, Chase, Searchlight and Goldbug in Transformers: Headmasters

The Throttlebots disappeared after this encounter, but they eventually resurfaced months later as the Decepticons were carrying out their final plan to destroy the Earth. Goldbug and the Throttlebots teamed up with Fastlane and Cloudraker to investigate the emergence of a "Death Tower" in Santiago, Chile, only to find Predaking there waiting for them. Naturally, the small 'bots were no match for the powerful combiner, but they fought bravely, clinging onto his limbs before being hurled aside. Luckily, the Autobot Targetmasters arrived in time to bail them out and take Predaking down.

Books

Ballantine Books

Dinobots Strike Back cover by Ballantine Books

Bumblebee was featured in the 1985 Find Your Fate Junior books Dinobots Strike Back by Casey Todd and Battle Drive by Barbara Siegel and Scott Siegel.

Kid Stuff Records & Tapes

Bumblebee was featured in the 1985 audio and book adventure Satellite of Doom publishing by Kid Stuff Records & Tapes.

Ladybird Books

Bumblebee appears in the 1986 Ladybird Books story Decepticon Hideout by John Grant.[1]

Listen 'n Fun

Bumblebee appeared in the 1985 Listen 'n Fun story Sun Raid.[2]

Marvel Books

Bumblebee is featured in the 1984 Marvel Books story Battle for Cybertron.[3]

Bumblebee appeared in the 1984 sticker and story book Return to Cybertron written by Suzanne Weyn and published by Marvel Books.

Bumblebee appeared in the 1984 sticker and story book The Revenge of the Decepticons written by Suzanne Weyn and published by Marvel Books.

Bumblebee appeared in the 1986 story and coloring book The Lost Treasure of Cybertron by Marvel Books.

Modern Publishing

Bumblebee was featured in the 1993 Transformers: Generation 2 coloring book Decepticon Madness by Bud Simpson.[4]

Comics

Bumblebee has appeared in numerous comic books and related media printed by various publishers.

3H Enterprises

Bumblebee appeared in the voice actor play performed at BotCon 2004, in which a device built by Rhinox to stop Unicron from pulling victims from other dimensions inadvertently transports an Autobot shuttle under Bumblebee's command into the middle of a battle between Rattrap, Silverbolt, and Waspinator and a team of Unicron's agents. Bumblebee's shuttle is able to scoop up Rattrap and company when their ship is destroyed. After saving more of Unicron's victims from the Decepticons, Bumblebee's team returns to their own time.

Condor Verlag

In a story called "By their Blasters you shall know them ...!" from Transformers Comic-Magazin issue #12 by German comic publisher Condor Verlag Optimus Prime instructs Backstreet, Bumblebee and Ruckus on how to identify Autobots from Decepticons in battle using the Ark's computer. Pretender Bumblebee is one of those he displays to the Autobots.[5]

Devil's Due Publishing

G.I. Joe vs. The Transformers #1

In Devil's Due's first G.I. Joe vs. The Transformers crossover, the evil terrorist organization Cobra are the first to uncover the Ark and the Transformers slumbering within it, capturing and reformatting a large number of them to use them as war machines. Bumblebee and Wheeljack are able to avoid this fate, contact the team created to respond to the threat of Cobra, G.I. Joe, and help to free their fellow Autobots. Unlike most Autobots, who had new alternate modes, Bumblebee and Wheeljack had their original Generation 1 alternate modes in this series.

In the second crossover, Bumblebee is among the Autobots sent back in time due to an accident with the spacebridge computer Teletran-3. As part of a small group transported to the 1970s, Bumblebee is reformatted as a small economy car (this time, resembling an AMC Pacer) before the teamed-up Joes and Cobras return all the Transformers to present-day Cybertron.

Bumblebee takes center stage in the third crossover series, as he, Grimlock, Arcee, and Perceptor are sent to Earth to aid G.I. Joe in removing the influence of Cybertronian technology on the planet. Sporting his original alternate mode again, he is shown to have something of a crush on Arcee. When Cobra attacks the base, the Autobots help repel the Cobra Battle Android Trooper armies. Journeying to Cybertron to stop Serpentor, the mismatched group is ambushed first by Cannibalizers, then by Serpentor, Piranacon, Predaking and the Stunticons, with Bumblebee being badly injured as he runs right into Predaking's leg. He is then executed by Serpentor, who would later comment that Bumblebee's death is the only thing that ever really made him feel emotion. Despite the character being notoriously difficult to kill, it seems his death is permanent, as Serpentor comments that he felt something leave him, most likely his spark. A statue to his memory was seen in the final issue. His death would continue to have repercussions, as seen in the fourth series, in which Prime insists on journeying to Earth personally rather than expose any of his troops to the same fate.

Dreamwave Productions

When Dreamwave Productions introduced their re-imagined version of Generation 1 continuity for the 21st Century, Bumblebee was present for the Autobots' new adventures once again. The War Within, set in Cybertron's past, chronicled Bumblebee's early adventures in the Battle of Altihex and the defense of Iacon in the face of an attack by Shockwave.

When Optimus Prime and Megatron vanish in an early spacebridge experiment, causing the Autobots and Decepticons to splinter into smaller factions, Bumblebee remains with the Autobots under Prowl's command.

As usual, Bumblebee is among the Transformers trapped in stasis aboard the crashed Ark who are reactivated on Earth in 1984. Although not depicted in fiction, the general events of the television series pilot seemed to take place in the Dreamwave continuity - with Bumblebee meeting and befriending Spike Witwicky.

The war on Earth ends in 1999, however, when the Autobots successfully defeat the Decepticons and attempt to transport them back to Cybertron aboard the Ark II. Thanks to sabotage orchestrated by American military general Robert Hallo, however, the Ark II explodes after exiting orbit, and the Transformers fall back to Earth. Hallo's plan to take control of them is foiled by his former partner Adam Rook, who rounds up several deactivated Transformers, Bumblebee among them, and puts them under his control, intending to sell them on the black market as weapons of mass destruction. During the auctions, Bumblebee is among the Transformers sent to attack the Smitco Oil Refinery as a demonstration of their power. Megatron liberates himself from Rook's control and soon does the same to the other Decepticons, who dismantle Bumblebee and the other Mini-Bots. Rescued by their reactivated Autobot comrades, Bumblebee and the others soon recover and are dispatched to stop Megatron's plan to cyber-form the Earth with a metallic virus.

Transformers: Generation One #3 by Dreamwave Productions

A year later, Shockwave arrives on Earth, having successfully unified Cybertron and intending to arrest Prime and Megatron's forces as war criminals. Bumblebee is among the Transformers captured by Shockwave, and is later part of the team who join the underground Autobot resistance on Cybertron.

Following the liberation of Cybertron from Shockwave’s rule, Bumblebee is assigned to help reinforce Jazz’s team on Earth and is placed in command of the Autobot supply shuttle Orion, with a team under his command for the first time. Upon arriving in the Earth system from transwarp space, they witness the arrival of the deranged clone of Starscream, Sunstorm. When the resultant conflict with Sunstorm causes most of the Autobots and Decepticons on Earth to be knocked out of commission, Bumblebee and Jetfire track Sunstorm to beneath the Earth's surface, where Bumblebee is knocked out and saved by a begrudging Starscream. Jetfire subsequently seems to die battling Sunstorm, shaking Bumblebee's resolve so badly that he decides to leave the Autobots.

Turning to Spike for advice, the pair goes on a drive in Cincinnati, where they debate responsibility and save a woman from some muggers. Bumblebee apparently remains unconvinced, but Dreamwave's subsequent bankruptcy and closure left his story unfinished.

The profile series, More Than Meets the Eye, featured entries for Bumblebee as both a Pretender and as Goldbug, but gave no in-story reason for his upgrades to these forms and they never appeared in the fiction of the series.

In the alternate Dreamwave Transformers/G.I. Joe storyline set in World War II, Bumblebee is formatted to turn into a motorcycle with sidecar.

The profile series, More Than Meets the Eye, featured entries for Bumblebee as both a Pretender and as Goldbug, but gave no in-story reason for his upgrades to these forms and they never appeared in the fiction of the series.

Fun Publications

Hasbro Transformers Collectors' Club #14 by Fun Publications

Bumblebee has been featured in a number of different setting in stories by Fun Publications.

Classicverse

an illustration of Classic Bumblebee was featured on the cover of Transformers Club Magazine #14.

In Crossing Over, when the Cybertronians Skyfall and Landquake arrive on Earth unexpectedly Megatron attempts to destroy them, but Optimus Prime and his Autobots, including Bumblebee, are able to drive Megatron away.

Beast Era

In a possible future chronicled in the exclusive comic book available at BotCon 2005, Bumblebee featured as the espionage director of the Autobots. Having been on the trail of the Decepticon agent Flamewar for a long time, Bumblebee interrupts a communication between Flamewar and the Tripredacus Council and reveals that his agent, Ricochet, has installed a degenerative virus into Deathsaurus's clone army. With Flamewar now exposed, Bumblebee points out that she was nothing more than a liability to the Council, who blow her ship up.

Wings of Honor

Bumblebee appears in the story Generation 2: Redux in which he is among the reinforcements from Autobot City to respond to the Decepticon attack at the Large Hadron Collider in Switzerland. Once there, the Autobots are able to defeat the Decepticons, but during the fight the Autobots are exposed to refined Forestonite, which enhances and mutates Cybertronian systems. He gets enhanced to his Generation 2 form.[6]

IDW Publishing

Generation 1
Bumblebee's holo-matter avatar in Transformers: Infiltration #3 by IDW Publishing

Fall of 2005 was the third re-launch for the Transformers comic series, this time under the management of IDW Publishing.

IDW's core universe was introduced with the six-issue mini-series, The Transformers: Infiltration, making it clear that the company's take on the Generation 1 universe was radically different. Bumblebee appears as a member of a small team of Autobots under the command of Prowl, operating in secret on Earth out of Ark-19. Still a Volkswagen Beetle, he (like the other Autobots) possesses the added ability to generate a "holo-matter" avatar of a young female to masquerade as a driver and to otherwise interact with humans. Working with Ratchet and a trio of young humans to search an abandoned Decepticon base, Bumblebee is able to take down Skywarp during a Decepticon attack, out-thinking the Decepticon and shooting him out of the sky despite his teleportation system. After Blitzwing and Skywarp bring the base down, Bumblebee helps save the humans, despite commenting previously that they would be acceptable losses. As Megatron then engages the traitorous Starscream in battle, Bumblebee does what he does best by spying on the fight; almost shot by the Battlechargers, he is saved by Prowl and Jazz. In the follow-up, The Transformers: Escalation, he is left to run the Ark-19 on his own.

Bumblebee, Jazz, Optimus Prime, Prowl, and Ratchet appeared in the New Avengers/Transformers crossover by Marvel Comics and IDW Publishing that came out in 2007.

Optimus Prime leads Bumblebee, Drift, Kup, Prowl, Ratchet and Wheeljack in Las Vegas when a Cybertronian ship crashes containing Galvatron, Cyclonus, Scourge and an infestation of zombies from another universe. Galvatron attempts to take command of the Autobots, and after fighting them explains his mission to stop an undead infestation. Wheeljack sets up an energy shield around the city to keep the infestation contained, but it will only last for 24 hours. Kup recognizes a Decepticon named Bayonet in Galvatron's command as not being right, and she is revealed to be the extradimensional vampire Britt.[7]

Transformers: Robots in Disguise #1 by IDW Publishing

Bumblebee and non-aligned leader Metalhawk went to greet newly-arrived Hipotank, but Bumblebee found his point of view being drowned out by Metalhawk's anti-Autobot rhetoric. Prowl was using Decepticons to enforce the peace, and while Bumblebee was arranging a memorial for the Lost Light crew, some of them began exercising their authority a little too vigorously with Zetca. Consequently Bumblebee had to activate Horri-Bull's I/D chip, killing the Decepticon.[8]

When Starscream approached Autobot headquarters, Bumblebee stunned the Decepticon with his new modified cane and announced he was done trusting Decepticons. The memorial went ahead, with Bumblebee giving a speech, unaware that the Decepticons were planning to assassinate him. The plot was foiled, thanks to information from Starscream, who interrupted Bumblebee's speech to assert that he, Starscream, must be part of the government.[9]

After a mysterious explosion, Bumblebee called in Wheeljack to investigate, though he wasn't keen on being called "King Bee". He tried to suppress his suspicions that the Decepticons were behind the explosion, which turned out to be false anyway when Wheeljack discovered what was happening. As many Cybertronians were saved thanks to Starscream's help, Bumblebee agreed to let Starscream be part of the government, despite the idea angering Silverbolt enough to knock Bumblebee down and depart with his team.[10]

The three leaders held a speech, though to Bumblebee's dismay, Starscream dominated proceedings. He later found himself having to deal with an increasingly-paranoid Prowl.[11]

When Sky-Byte arrived, Bumblebee passed on turning out to greet the newcomer, as he knew Metalhawk and Starscream would be there to undermine him. Following a brawl and some persuasive words from Metalhawk and Ironhide, Bumblebee made the decision to have the I/D chips deactivated as a first step towards equality between Autobot and Decepticon. [12]

When a ship flying Decepticon colors materialized in Cybertron's sky, Bumblebee summoned Wheeljack to observe the ship's landing.[13]

Hearts of Steel

IDW has begun publishing of The Transformers: Evolutions, a series dedicated to featuring alternate-reality Elseworlds-style tales of the Transformers. The first installment, Hearts of Steel, places the Transformers in battle on Earth prior to the Ice Age with the forms of transmetal prehistoric beasts. The Ice Age forces them to enter hibernation beneath the surface of the planet when it begins.

In the 1800s, Bumblebee is awakened when a pounding from above showers dirt on him. Expecting Decepticon activity, he is surprised to find that the source is humans building a railway. Curious about their train, he is almost caught by the humans, but hides by adopting the train's form as his alternate mode. Among the humans is the legendary John Henry, who is concerned that the train - a spike-driving device designed to lay railroad - is intended to replace him. To placate his concerns, Bumblebee reveals his true form to him with the promise that he is only here to help. Through John Henry, Bumblebee learns that the Decepticons have reactivated and are pillaging trains as part of their newest plan. They plan to travel to New York and obtain an electrical generator in hopes it will make them all-powerful. After awakening some of his fellow Autobots, Henry and Bumblebee manage to thwart the Decepticons' plans, rerouting the rail track they are using, causing the Decepticon train convoy to plunge into a chasm. After this Bumblebee and the other Autobots return to stasis.

Bumblebee was among the Autobots who opposed the Decepticons serving the elder gods in the IDW Publishing Infestation 2: Transformers comic.[14]

Marvel Comics

Stories from the UK Transformers series are in italics.

Autobots and Decepticons awaken on Earth in 1984, Bumblebee is part of the first team of Autobots sent out to investigate the planet. Eager to be the first to encounter a local life-form, Bumblebee gets his wish when he is injured in a battle with the Decepticons at a drive-in movie theater, and - stuck in car mode - is found by the young human, Buster Witwicky. Buster takes him back to his family's automotive garage, where his father Sparkplug repairs the car, and is shocked when it transforms into a robot. Bumblebee arranges their first meeting with Optimus Prime, and his role as a liaison between the Autobots and humans continues as he participates in the first meetings with millionaire industrialist G. B. Blackrock, eventually leading to a deal between them in which Blackrock supplies the robots with fuel.

The Transformers #16 by Marvel Comics

After some smaller roles showing new Autobot recruits around and searching for Decepticon activity, Bumblebee takes the spotlight again when he begins to question his usefulness to the Autobots, and abandons them without explanation. Unfortunately, this occurs just as Decepticon leader Shockwave has targeted Bumblebee as the weakest link in the Autobots, planning to use mind control on him and use him against his comrades. Taking refuge from Decepticon pursuit in a used car lot, Bumblebee is stolen by two teenagers. This attracts the attention of both Autobots and Decepticons, and after saving the teens from a Decepticon attack, Bumblebee himself is saved from them by the Autobots, convincing him of his worth to them.

When Bumblebee is assigned to watch over the launch of the mobile Power Station Alpha, also guarded by the daring special mission force G.I. Joe, a Decepticon attack prompts him to transform in order to save a civilian boy. The Joes mistake him for a Decepticon and destroy him. Learning of their mistake and allying with the Autobots, the Joes set about trying to rebuild Bumblebee. With the aid of Autobot medic Ratchet, Bumblebee is reconstructed as Goldbug.[15] In Transformers #56, "Back from the Dead", Ratchet works to restore the deactivated Autobots to life. He is captured by believed-dead Decepticon leader Megatron, who demands that he rebuild Starscream as a Pretender. Ratchet succeeds in this task, but he is also able to use other prototype Pretender shells to restore to life Grimlock, Jazz, and Goldbug, who he restores to being Bumblebee out of personal preference.

As the UK series did not reprint G.I. Joe and the Transformers (in which the above account of Bumblebee's transformation into Goldbug occurred) until much later, a new story was penned that re-imagined the change in a very different way, as part of the U.K.'s larger running time travel storyline. When the deranged future Decepticon leader Galvatron travels back in time to 1987, the bounty hunter Death's Head pursues him. The mass-shifting inherent in the time-travel process causes the Autobot First Aid to be displaced to limbo when Death's Head arrives, which alerts Bumblebee to his presence. Wanting to keep the fact that he was in the past a secret, Death's Head destroys Bumblebee, but his remains are soon happened upon by the Junkion, Wreck-Gar, also from the future. Putting his advanced mechanical skills to work, Wreck-Gar soon rebuilds Bumblebee as Goldbug and the upgraded Autobot joins in the battle against Galvatron, at one point facing him one-on-one (and losing) before Ultra Magnus intervenes. Goldbug has a few additional adventures dealing with Galvatron's threat in other U.K.-exclusive stories.

During a battle with the Decepticon Mayhem Attack Squad, Bumblebee, Jazz, and Grimlock are transported to the center of Cybertron, where they discover the slumbering form of their creator and deity, Primus. The battle that follows causes Primus to briefly awake with a scream, alerting his ancient enemy Unicron to his location. Aware that Unicron was now bearing down on Cybertron, the Autobots begin a search for the Creation Matrix, the only force capable of stopping the chaos-bringer. Bumblebee, Jazz, and Grimlock follow a lead to VsQz, third moon of the planet Cameron, where they run afoul of both a monstrous creature created by the corrupted Matrix energy, and the mighty Decepticon Pretender, Thunderwing, who defeats them and claimed the Matrix for his own. They are later rescued by their fellow troops, and Thunderwing is defeated.

Bumblebee put in one further appearance in the US Marvel comics. In a nightmare alternate universe where Unicron has destroyed Cybertron, and Galvatron and the Decepticons rule Earth, Bumblebee is shown in flashback as one of the casualties of the Decepticon conquest, being killed by Scourge.

In the expanded universe of the Transformers comic published exclusively in the UK, which reprinted the American series with new stories spliced in between, Bumblebee had a lead role in several other stories. In one, he goes AWOL to track down and capture Ravage, in the process running into a Decepticon trap and needing rescuing. Later on, he is part of the Dinobot Hunt; on his own, he rescues three Autobot prisoners and disables the Decepticon's means of mentally controlling Sludge.

After the time-and-space-shattering events of the Time Wars, the UK comic introduced an alternate timeline that chronicled the adventures of the Autobot Earthforce, a group of pro-active Autobots under Grimlock's command, who are dedicated to safeguarding Earth while Optimus Prime's contingent deals with the threat of Unicron. Bumblebee is a member of the Earthforce, performing such notable missions as helping Ironhide stop the Decepticons' plan to rebuild Devastator as an individual being.

When Bumblebee is assigned to watch over the launch of the mobile Power Station Alpha, also guarded by the daring special mission force G.I. Joe, a Decepticon attack prompts him to transform in order to save a civilian boy. The Joes mistake him for a Decepticon and destroy him. Learning of their mistake and allying with the Autobots, the Joes set about trying to rebuild Bumblebee. With the aid of Autobot medic Ratchet, Bumblebee is reconstructed as Goldbug.[15]

Charged with hunting down the petty criminal known as the Mechanic, who had stolen some Autobot equipment, Goldbug and Blaster opt instead to remove themselves from the tyrannical command of then-leader Grimlock. A run-in with the Decepticon Triple Changers leads to both robots becoming infected with the metal-eating disease known as the Scraplets, but with the help of human Charlie Fong and the Autobot Throttlebots, a cure is found in the form of water, and they are saved. Soon afterward, however, the group, low on fuel, is caught up to by the Protectobots, under Grimlock's command, and Blaster is captured. The abandoned, immobile Throttlebots, including Goldbug, are then captured by the government-sponsored Rapid Anti-robot Assault Team (RAAT), who intend their destruction. Sympathetic to their plight, RAAT operate Walter Barnett removes their brain components and installs them in toy cars while their bodies are destroyed.

After managing to escape the Predacons, Goldbug returns to the Autobots' volcano base, only to discover that the Ark had been restored and had blasted off. Blindsided by Decepticon leader Ratbat, Goldbug's toy body is blasted, but soon found by the Autobot Headmasters - freshly arrived from the planet Nebulos - who uses their technology to construct his body for him again. The group soon learns that the brain patterns of Optimus Prime (who died sometime before) have been preserved on computer disk by a human named Ethan Zachary. Goldbug takes the disk to Nebulos, where Prime is restored to life as a Powermaster.

Subsequently, Goldbug is part of a combined Autobot-Decepticon force who are deactivated while defending the Earth against the Underbase-powered Starscream. He falls along with other Autobots in defense of New York City. Goldbug is seen among the Autobots being repaired on the Ark when Optimus Prime sends Landmine and Cloudburst on their mission to obtain computer chips to repair fellow Autobots in issue #52, "Guess Who The Mechannibals Are Having For Dinner?"

Goldbug's body is seen among the deactivated Autobots Ratchet is trying to revive in Transformers #56, "Back from the Dead". While Ratchet works to restore the deactivated Autobots to life, his attempts consistently meet with failure. In the midst of his work, he is captured by believed-dead Decepticon leader Megatron, who demands that he rebuild Starscream as a Pretender. Ratchet succeeds in this task, but while Megatron leaves him unattended to observe Starscream's attack on Earth, he is able to use other prototype Pretender shells to restore to life Grimlock, Jazz, and Goldbug, who he restores to being Bumblebee out of personal preference.

As the UK series did not reprint G.I. Joe and the Transformers (in which the above account of Bumblebee's transformation into Goldbug occurred) until much later, a new story was penned that re-imagined the change in a very different way, as part of the UK's larger running time travel storyline. When the deranged future Decepticon leader Galvatron travels back in time to 1987, the bounty hunter Death's Head pursues him. The mass-shifting inherent in the time-travel process causes the Autobot First Aid to be displaced to limbo when Death's Head arrives, which alerts Bumblebee to his presence. Wanting to keep the fact that he was in the past a secret, Death's Head destroys Bumblebee, but his remains are soon happened upon by the Junkion, Wreck-Gar, also from the future. Putting his advanced mechanical skills to work, Wreck-Gar soon rebuilds Bumblebee as Goldbug and the upgraded Autobot joins in the battle against Galvatron, at one point facing him one-on-one (and losing) before Ultra Magnus intervenes. Goldbug has a few additional adventures dealing with Galvatron's threat in other U.K.-exclusive stories.

TFcon comics

Goldbug becomes Bumblebee again in the TFcon 2009 comic story Game Face

Bumblebee appeared in the TFcon 2009 voice actor play prelude comic "Game Face".

Bumblebee, voiced by Dan Gilvezan, appeared in the TFcon 2009 voice actor play Bee for, Bee now.[16]

Bumblebee appears among the characters in Re-Unification, the 2010 TFcon voice actor play prelude comic.[17]

Games

Bumblebee vs. Menasor in Transformers: Battle Circuit

Bumblebee was one of eight playable characters in the 1986 Commodore 64 video game Transformers: The Battle to Save the Earth.

The Classic toy line appeared in a simple Flash-based video game on the Hasbro web site called Transformers Battle Circuit. In this one-on-one fighting game, players press the right and left arrow keys to try to overpower their opponent. Playable characters include Rodimus, Bumblebee, Grimlock, Jetfire, Starscream, Astrotrain, Trypticon, and Menasor. Optimus Prime and Megatron each appear as the boss the player must defeat to win the game.[18]

Bumblebee is one of the light blue robots in the 2010 card game Monopoly Deal Transformers.

Other media

A parody of the Generation 1 Transformers was aired in the December 23, 2008 episode of Frank TV, called "Frank the Halls". In the story, Optimus Prime and his Autobots (Bumblebee, Jazz, and Wheeljack) battle Megatron and his Decepticons (Soundwave and Starscream) when Optimus runs out of gas. Optimus becomes enraged at the price of gas, steals the fuel from the annoying hybrid Autobot Prius Maximus, then joins the Decepticons in destroying the city.[19]

Bumblebee appears in the Robot Chicken episode "Junk in the Trunk". In the segment he is in, he is whipped by a towel used by Grimlock in the locker room and later appears at Optimus' bedside before he dies of prostate cancer.

Maggie Simpson appeared as Bumblebee in one opening sequence to The Simpsons alongside the rest of the Simpson family rendered as Autobots.

Toys

  • Generation 1 Mini-Vehicle Bumblebee (yellow) (1984)
A Microman toy. Turned from robot to car. This version of Bumblebee features Dunlop brand tires. The original Bumblebee toy was packaged in vehicle mode on a card. Came with no accessories.
  • Generation 1 Mini-Vehicle Bumblebee (red) (1984)
A Microman toy. Same as the yellow version except for the color. This toy was old Takara Micrman stock packaged as a Transformer.
  • Generation 1 Mini-Vehicle Bumblebee (rub symbol) (1985)
Changed slightly from the original release to have a heat-sensitive rub symbol on the chest of robot instead of a simple sticker.
  • Generation 1 McDonald's Bumblebee (1985)
One of the four original McDonald's Happy Meal Transformers toys from 1985, this toy was just a solid statue of the character in robot mode. Variants were made in several 2-color combinations, such as green and black, or red and blue.
  • Generation 1 Decoy Bumblebee (1987)
A red rubber figurine given away with smaller carded Transformers in 1987 as a promotion.
  • Generation 1 Goldbug (1987)
Released as part of the Throttlebots group, Goldbug had a pullback motor. He was proportioned more like an actual Volkswagen Beetle. The Throttlebots were among the first Transformers released in 1987 and featured pull-back motors that worked in both car and robot modes.[20]
  • Generation 1 Pretender Classic Bumblebee (1989)
Still a Volkswagen Beetle, Bumblebee was equipped with off-road tires as he was upgraded into a Pretender. Armed with a gun that could be wielded in robot mode and plugged into the roof of his vehicle mode, and another gun for his shell.
  • Generation 1 Legends Bumblebee (1989)
Pretender Bumblebee was also sold without a shell as a member of the Kmart exclusive "Transformers: Legends" assortment. Came with a gun.
  • Generation 1 Action Masters Bumblebee (1990)
This non-transforming action figure of Bumblebee blended the design of his original toy with his cartoon/comic design, and came armed with a Heli-Pack that transformed via a spring-loaded feature into a high-powered air rifle the figure could wield. According to his power plans Bumblebee sported an Anti-Decepticon Jamming Sensor, a Target Trajectory Calculator and a Photon Shock Burst Component.
  • Generation 1 Keychain Bumblebee (2001)
The original yellow version of Bumblebee was made into a keychain by adding a small plastic loop and metal keychain in 2001. This toy was recolored into BotCon exclusive Glyph in 2002. Blind packaged black versions of this toy were sold by Takara in Japan.
  • Generation 1 Reissue Bumblebee (2004)
This remold of the original yellow Bumblebee featured a new head mold which looked more like the animated series head. This toy was later recolored into the ehobby exclusive Decepticon Bug Bite.
  • Generation 1 Reissue Bumblebee Keychain (2007)
Keychain Bumblebee was reissued on new backing cards saying "Heroes of Cybertron" in 2007 at Walmart stores.
  • Generation 2 Mini-Bot Bumblebee (1993)
A metallic gold recolor of the original Bumblebee toy.[21]
  • Generation 2 Go-Bot Bumblebee (1995)
Released in the final year of the Transformers: Generation 2 toyline, Bumblebee was a gold, yellow, and black recolor of the earlier figure High Beam, a member of the Go-Bots sub-group possessing free-wheeling axles for Hot Wheels-style play activity. This toy was 1:64 scale. The toy was recolored into the BotCon 1995 exclusive Nightracer, and Robots in Disguise Crosswise.
  • Smallest Transformers Bumblebee (2003)
Among the blind packaged Transformers of the Smallest Transformer line was a tiny version of Generation 1 Bumblebee, standing only 1.75 inches tall. With his official height of 15 feet, this toy has a 1:103 scale.
  • Titanium 3-inch Bumblebee (2006)
After years of not possessing the "Bumblebee" name trademark, Hasbro finally regained the moniker in time to release a 3 inch die-cast non-transforming Bumblebee figure as part of the Transformers: Titanium line in 2006. This figure was very accurate to body style to the Generation 1 toy, but with the animated series head. With the official height of Bumblebee being 15 feet and this figure standing 3 inches tall, this figure is at 1:60 scale.
This toy was later recolored into Titanium Cliffjumper.
  • Classic Deluxe Bumblebee (2006)
Released towards the end of 2006, Bumblebee has finally returned as a transforming figure as part of the Transformers: Classic toyline, designed as upgraded versions of classic characters. Unable to be an actual Volkswagen due to the company's position, as noted above, Bumblebee is nevertheless a small, stocky car which does not appear to be based on any single production model but rather an amalgamation of features from the Nissan Skyline C10 Station Wagon.[22] He tows behind him a jetski trailer, the Wave Crusher, which transforms into a winged jetpack for the robot mode. Although Bumblebee sports a Fireblast of 4, he does not actually carry a gun.
This toy was later repainted as Cliffjumper. The head sculpt is the same on both versions and is possibly the first Transformer head sculpt to depict a smile. With Bumblebee's height of 15 feet and the figure standing 4.75 inches tall, this figure is at 1:38 scale. This toy was designed by Alex Kubalsky.[23]
Two slight mold variants of this toy exist, with the raised part of the roof where the rub symbol being wider on later releases than the other. Although depicted with blue windows and headlights on the box, the toy has clear windows and headlights.
Bumblebee was initially sold individually, but later sold in a value pack with Classic Astrotrain.
  • Classic Legends Bumblebee (2007)
First seen at BotCon 2006, the Micro series Bumblebee is a yellow recolor of the Legends of Cybertron Hot Shot figure. The vehicle mode is based on a Chrysler ME Four-Twelve done at a scale of about 1:61.
  • Transformers The Legacy of Bumblebee Deluxe Bumblebee (2008)
A Walmart exclusive gift set featuring three Deluxe Bumblebee figures: the 2006 Classics version (repainted with black replacing the white parts), the 2008 movie premium version and the 2008 Animated version.
  • Universe Legends Bumblebee (2008)
A new Legends class mold was displayed at SDCC 2008.
  • Henkei! Henkei! C-02 Deluxe Bumble (2008)
The Japan release version of Classics Bumblebee by Takara Tomy is predominantly yellow with white side skirts and a gold chrome spoiler.
  • Alternity Bumblebee (2009)
A Deluxe-sized figure with intricate detail and articulation that transforms into a Suzuki Swift. The body design is also shared with Cliffjumper, which is colored red and uses a different head sculpt. The toy was also recolored as Goldbug.
  • Reveal the Shield Legends Gold Bumblebee (2010)
A recolor of the Legends figure in metallic gold with blue robot parts.
  • United Deluxe Bumblebee (2010)
A recolor of the Henkei! figure in metallic gold, sold exclusively in Japan by Takara Tomy.
  • Reveal the Shield Deluxe Bumblebee (2011)
A recolor of the Classic Deluxe figure in yellow-orange with black stripes.
  • Alternity Suzuki Swift Sport Goldbug (2011/2012)
A recolor of the Alternity Bumblebee figure in metallic gold pieces.
  • Generations Legends Bumblebee with Blaze Master
A new mold. Bumblebee turns from robot to car. Blaze Master turns from robot to helicopter or gun.[24]
  • Generations Deluxe Bumblebee
A new mold. Turns from robot to muscle car. Comes with a free IDW comic book.[25]
  • Titanium 6-inch War Within Bumblebee (unreleased)
A prototype of a 6 inch tall War Within Bumblebee/Cliffjumper figure was seen at a Hasbro factory tour in 2007. This figure had two different head sculpts, one for Bumblebee and one for Cliffjumper. This figure has yet to be released and seems to have been canceled.
  • Alternators Bumblebee (unreleased)
As one of the earliest concepts designed for the 1:24 scale line, Transformers: Alternators, Bumblebee was reimagined as a Volkswagen New Beetle. Volkswagen's rejection of the pitch on the grounds that they did not want to associate their vehicles with war-themed media meant that the toy never progressed beyond the line-art phase, but the design was used for Bumblebee in the 2005 Transformers: Timelines comic book.

Gallery

References

  1. Grant, John (1986). Decepticon Hideout. Ladybird Books. ISBN 072140989X. 
  2. Sun Raid. Listen 'n Fun. 1985. 
  3. Siegel, Scott (1984). Battle for Cybertron. Marvel Books. ISBN 0871350165. 
  4. Simpson, Bud (1993). Decepticon Madness. Modern Publishing. ISBN 1-56144-346-8. 
  5. Robert Mann (w). "By their Blasters you shall know them ...!" Transformers Comic-Magazin 12 (December 1990), Condor Verlag
  6. Greg Sepelak & Trent Troop (w), Robby Musso (p), Robby Musso & Frank Milkovich (i). "Generation 2: Redux" Transformers Timelines v2, 5 (Summer, 2010), Fort Worth, Texas: Fun Publications
  7. Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning (w), Nick Roche (p), Joana Lafuente (i). Transformers: Infestation 1 (February 2011), IDW Publishing
  8. Transformers: Robots in Disguise #1, "The Autonomy Lesson"
  9. Transformers: Robots in Disguise #2, "The World & Everything in It"
  10. Transformers: Robots in Disguise #3 "Stick Together"
  11. Transformers: Robots in Disguise #4, "Devisive"
  12. Transformers: Robots in Disguise #5, "A Better Tomorrow"
  13. Transformers: Robots in Disguise #7, "Interference Patterns"
  14. Chuck Dixon (w), Guido Guidi (p), John Wycough (i), Joana Lafuente (col), Chris Mowry (let), Bobby Curnow (ed). Infestation 2: The Transformers 1 (February 2011), IDW Publishing
  15. 15.0 15.1 G.I. Joe and the Transformers #1-4 (1987)
  16. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OBTlU6PT9LA&feature=relmfu
  17. TFcon.com - Prelude Comic
  18. "Entertainment/OnlineGames/GameSelect/Action Games/Transformers/Transformers Battle Circuit". Hasbro.com. http://www.hasbro.com/monkeybartv/default.cfm?page=Entertainment/OnlineGames/GameSelect&game=1787. Retrieved 2010-04-27. 
  19. "Animation Corner: Transformers Satire For FrankTV". Doinkamation.blogspot.com. 2008-12-03. http://doinkamation.blogspot.com/2008/12/transformers-satire-for-franktv.html. Retrieved 2010-04-27. 
  20. Alvarez, J.E. (2001). The Unofficial Guide to Transformers 1980s Through 1990s Revised & Expanded 2nd Edition. Schiffer Publishing Ltd.. p. 54. ISBN 0-7643-1364-9. 
  21. Brereton, Erin (2006). Transformers: The Fantasy, The Fun, The Future. Triumph Books. p. 22. ISBN 1-57243-983-1. 
  22. Hasbro.com
  23. "PingMag - The Tokyo-based magazine about “Design and Making Things” » Archive » Transformers’ Toy Design". Pingmag.jp. 2007-06-29. http://www.pingmag.jp/2007/06/29/transformers/. Retrieved 2010-04-27. 
  24. http://www.tfw2005.com/transformers-news/transformers-generations-classics-30-35/transformers-generations-toy-fair-2013-legends-official-images-176851/
  25. http://www.tfw2005.com/transformers-news/transformers-generations-classics-30-35/transformers-generations-toy-fair-2013-deluxe-wave-official-images-176850/

External links