Denny Clay is Russell Clay's father and owner of a large junkyard outside of Crown City. Denny helps to provide room for a base, a cover story, and aid for the Autobots. Denny and Russell work and assist their Autobot allies in their missions to recapture the escaped Decepticon prisoners.
Denny Clay appeared in Pilot (Part 1). Denny was moving some stuff around in his scrapyard when suddenly his son, Russell Clay, makes an appearance. Denny stopped to see his son who he calls "Rusty" while Russell's mother was in Copenhagen. After a brief conversation, they were interrupted by a sudden "Earthquake" somewhere off the scrapyard. Denny was preparing Russell some breakfast as they watched the news inside the 14th street diner. Russell suggested to look for the meteor while Denny Clay had to close a deal with selling his "Billy the Breakfast Beaver" figures.
In Pilot (Part 2), Denny Clay was listening to music while moving around some stuff around his scrapyard unaware of the fight between Underbite and Grimlock going on in his scrapyard. Eventually, Russell told his dad about the danger and Denny was shocked to see a robotic talking car. Denny and his son was safe after the fight was over. The Autobots assured their safety and Denny volunteered to help them. Despite Bumblebee against it, Denny drove in his truck to help the Autobots block the bridge so that Underbite couldn't go through. Russell and Sideswipe managed to lure Underbite to the quarry where the team tried to push Underbite into but failed. Underbite picked up Denny in his truck and began to crush it with him inside. Suddenly Optimus Prime grabbed Underbite and tossed him into the quarry. Optimus revealed that he saved Denny from certain doom. Denny hugged Russell when he got out of his crushed truck. Denny and Russell looked on as the team began to squabble.
In Trust Exercises, Denny Clay gave Bee permission to take a boat on his mission with Grimlock. Denny left his son under the Autobot's care while he ran out to get supplies. Denny returned from getting supplies when the team came back from their missions and asked Fixit what he missed.
In More than Meets the Eye, when Russell was feeling bored, Denny suggested he should play with the other kids at the football field. Denny hooked his son up with a football helmet that belonged to Bronko Kowalski. On a mission to hunt down Chop Shop, Denny went with Fixit, who was in disguised, by driving up in Strongarm and pretend that they were safety inspectors. Chop Shop managed to grab Fixit and use the Mini-Con as his replacement arm. Denny tried to sneak behind and hit one of Chop Shop's components but failed as he was forced to run from it. Denny returned to scrapyard with the Autobots as they were successful in capturing Chop Shop with the help from Fixit. Denny cheers and celebrates on the sidelines with the Autobots as they watched Russell and his team won their game.
In W.W.O.D.?, when a stasis pod ended up in the museum, Denny was able to get the Autobots in by pretending to be noted archaeologist named "Nevada Flieber", with Russell acting to as an identity as "McPlank". After Russell had an encounter with the Decepticon named Terrashock, who broke free from the stasis pod, he informed Denny about him. Later when Terrashock nearly blows Bumblebee's cover, Denny and Russell assisted their ally in maintaining his cover by pretending that Bumblebee was an ordinary animatronic that the museum was working on. It worked and after Bumblebee had a vision of Optimus Prime in the museum, Denny and Russell took part in the team's chase for Terrashock from the museum to a nearby highway where they were successful in capturing Terrashock. After Russell gives an announcement to the civilians that watched it about it being a promotion for a stunt car rally, they head off into the sunset with Terrashock loaded in Strongarm's trailer.
In As the Kospego Commands!, Bumblebee instructed Denny and Russell not to sell a generator to some weirdos who said they were working for the Kospego. Later when Strongarm arrives with a weapon called the Decepticon Hunter, she accidentally and unintentionally destroys several of Denny's collection of Refrigerators, much to Denny's as they were building a space bridge that could potentially destroy Earth.
In Collect 'Em All, after an unwelcome visit to the scrapyard by Larry LaRue, Denny helped the Autobots by keeping other humans out of their hair as they tried to capture the Decepticon Filch. Unfortunately Filch mistook Denny for something valuable and carried him off to her nest at the top of a statue, and he had to be rescued by Sideswipe. When Denny was brought back to the scrapyard, Larry demands that Denny sells some of his stuff or he would feature Denny's scrapyard that he recorded on his camera on his show called Scrapmeisters. Denny agreed and he also confiscated the memory cards on Larry's camera, since Fixit had accidentally recorded himself on Larry's camera earlier, which prevented Larry from ever knowing about it.
In Rumble in the Jungle, Denny began clashing with Fixit over the former's participation in the repair of the Cybertronian weapons they'd found such as the Decepticon, thus leading to an all-out feud between pair that involved Sideswipe, Russell, and Grimlock to be involved until the trio succeeded in getting the pair to work together. It worked as Denny and Fixit agreed to make more Decepticon Hunters for the team and reconciled their friendship.
In Can You Dig It?, during the attempt to capture Ped, Denny used a piece of construction equipment to batter the Decepticon and to extract the Autobots from a pit Ped had dug. He went to get more cable when Grimlock was the last one left in the hole.
In Hunting Season, Denny came to the decision to not let Russell go along on any more missions. After the Decepticon Fracture set his sights on collecting the bounty on Bumblebee, nearly terminating a new Autobot arrival named Drift and kidnapped Denny, Strongarm, Sideswipe and Grimlock, the Autobots managed to get the best of the hunter. After the battle and Drift leaves Earth with Jetstorm and Slipstream, Denny decided to change his mind as he told Russell that he is better to come along on the missions.
In Sideways, Fixit and Denny finally succeeded in reproducing two more Decepticon hunters, presenting them to Strongarm and Sideswipe. Denny denied to give or make Russell one and also told Bumblebee about the location of a new Decepticon named Clampdown, to a place that Denny referred to as "no man's land" (which was the Crown City garbage area).
In Even Robots Have Nightmares, after going on an energon scrounging mission with Fixit and Bumblebee, Denny found himself caught up in the hunt for the Decepticon named Nightstrike and was temporary trapped in a cocoon. However, Russell managed to find them and saved them all just in time.
In One of Our Mini-Cons Is Missing, Denny was alarmed by his son repeatedly standing up to Drift and suggested Russell not hassle the giant alien robots. He was there when the team welcomed Drift and his Mini-Cons to the scrapyard.
In Deep Trouble, Denny was unimpressed when Fixit managed to flood the scrapyard while GroundBridging the other Autobots to an undersea location.
In The Champ, upon learning of Groundpounder cheating at a robot fight in the Rumbledome, Denny was shocked to learn by Russell that profession wrestling is scripted. While the other Autobots were indisposed, Denny signed Grimlock with Farnum and pretended to be Grimlock's driver so they could enter the giant robot fights at the Rumbledome. While it seemed to be an equal fight in some cases, Denny ended up being stuck inside the driver's cage during the whole ordeal. However they successfully managed to defeat Groundpounder and Fixit was able to get Denny out of the cage and witnessed Russell bestowing the winner's trophy to Fixit and Grimlock.
In The Trouble with Fixit, Denny was surprised when Fixit insisted he conduct a diagnostic on the Mini-Con, however he accidentally revived Fixit's guard programming. Denny blamed himself for messing up Fixit, though Russell tried to cheer his dad up by stating it wasn't since nobody knew it would happen. After Fixit chased everyone around the scrapyard, Denny was able to disable him and restore him to normal, which Fixit had no memory of the situation and thanked Denny.
In Lockout, after purchasing a roller coaster for the scrapyard, Denny reflected on how insignificant humans seemed alongside their robot friends. When Steeljaw's Decepticon team took over the scrapyard and trapped the Autobots outside using a subsonic field, Denny and Russell managed to fight back using the scrapyard's resources. Though Denny was recaptured by the Decepticons, once the Autobots had succeeded in regaining access to the yard and Denny helped reclose the stasis pods, he felt more useful in the Autobots' ongoing fight.
In Similarly Different, after his snoring kept Russell awake, Denny tried to fix up an RV for his son to sleep in, but only succeeded in destroying the RV. He and Russell later managed to fix up another vehicle and celebrated with some disco.
In Ghosts and Impostors, the pair returned to the scrapyard soaking wet after a disastrous camping trip. However, Russell seemed to get a laugh when Denny showed their "water proof tent" and then they went inside to dry themselves up.
In Battlegrounds, Part 1, while the Autobots went to rescue Sideswipe and Strongarm from the Decepticons, Denny and Russell kept themselves busy organizing the scrapyard's sock of bicycles. They were almost captured by Fracture, but instead were saved by the timely arrival of Optimus Prime, whom they accompanied to the battleground near Crown City to cover up for the Autobots with their battle against the Decepticons.
In Battlegrounds, Part 2, Denny and Russell attempted to persuade a police officer to evacuate the area and eventually succeeded just before the battle ended. Denny and Russell went to inform Bumblebee's team about emergency crews arriving at the site. They all headed back to the scrapyard where Strongarm and Windblade complimented Denny, Russell, and Fixit for capturing Fracture. All of the Autobots decided to stay on Earth and on Bumblebee's team.
In Overloaded, Part 1, Denny played Go Fish with Fixit and witnessed Mirconus take away Optimus's granted power. They had to deal with the fallout after the GroundBridge exploded, and when Overload invaded the scrapyard, Denny, Russell, and Fixit had to run for cover. After they were filled in on Overload's history with Bumblebee in it, they seemed to look strangely on Bumblebee's new behavior.
In Overloaded, Part 2, while cleaning up, Denny watched Russell throw trash at Fixit's head.
In Metal Meltdown, Russell showed Denny his new trophy case from past adventures they had with the Autobots. Denny and Russell helped deal with the security guards at the steel mill when the Autobots tracked Saberhorn there. They dressed up as security guards and told the real ones that they were "changing shifts". When Russell was taken hostage by the Decepticon, Bumblebee made sure Denny was safely out of harm's way. Despite not getting a souvenir, Fixit soon informed them about Saberhorn was imprisoned on the Alchemor.
In Suspended, despite the destruction of his collection of gnomes at her hand, Denny attempted to help the others encourage Strongarm when she became demoralized. Though an attempt to give her some confidence using the scrapyard's systems went badly, Denny and Fixit later helped her go to the aid of some bird watchers trapped by fire. Denny, Fixit, and Grimlock warned Strongarm about the gnomes as she got back her Decepticon Hunter. However, Strongarm stated she was a professional as no gnomes were harmed.
In Brainpower, Denny bought a collection of vintage toasters for Russell's college fund, but sadly Grimlock sat on them. He later when with Russell as they helped Fixit deliver the cure after Grimlock gained super-genius from a Cybertronian data cylinder and they hid behind Grimlock's leg as he was facing the Decepticon Simacore in a battle of wits.
In Misdirection, Denny witnessed as Russell performed a magic trick with a coin in front of him and the Autobots. Later, Denny, Russell, and Fixit were captured in a subsonic force field when Steeljaw managed to infiltrate the scrapyard. However the trio witnessed Strongarm fight Steeljaw and were soon rescued by her.
In Bumblebee's Night Off, when Bumblebee had to stake out a Rear Axle concert, Denny was unfortunately unable to go as he had a prior appointment with Crackpot Carl, who he had to reschedule twice. Russel was sent to accompany Bumblebee instead and they returned from the show with a T-shirt for his dad. Denny was ecstatic that the shirt was dirty from spilled concert snacks when he received it.
In Impounded, when Bumblebee and Strongarm got themselves impounded during a chase, Denny and Russell had to go and rescue them. While his son disabled the lot's security measures and distracted its guard, Denny sawed off the boots keeping the Autobots stationary. The four of them then drove out without being noticed.
In Portals, when Soundwave escaped the shadowzone, Denny, Russell and Fixit donned some makeshift armor and tried to fight the Decepticon as well as they could. Their first attempt ended in failure. However, Bumblebee, then observing from the shadowzone, was inspired to formulate a plan of his own after seeing the clash. Denny was made to distract Soundwave long enough for Fixit to regain access to the GroundBridge, allowing Bumblebee to return to normal space. Afterwards Denny succeeded in whacking Soundwave back into the shadowzone using his crane.
In Decepticon Island (Part 1), when they obtained a lead regarding the colony of Decepticons, the Autobots headed to the harbor to try and infiltrate the Decepticon base. Denny and Russell stayed on shore with Fixit. Though mostly the entire team participated in the raid, included Bumblebee's old friend Ratchet, Denny had his doubts whether a handful of Autobots had any chance of winning against an entire army of Decepticons.
In Decepticon Island (Part 2), while the two humans were preparing disguises in case anyone turned up, Fixit left them to try and free the Mini-Con slaves in the base. The Autobots wound up being victorious, and the Decepticon crisis finally came to an end. Though many Autobots decided to head back to Cybertron, Bumblebee, Grimlock, Strongarm, Sideswipe, Drift, Jetstorm, and Slipstream were not among them; instead this team decided to stay behind to set up a permanent base of operations on Earth. Before speeding off, Bumblebee assured his human friends that the junkyard would always be another home to them.
Season 2 1/2
In Strongarm's Big Score, when Strongarm wanted to take Fixit with her on a mission, Denny and Russell volunteered to operate the command center. It was a disaster, culminating in them accidentally bridging the team to the scrapyard instead of Mount St. Hilary.
In Mini-Con Madness, Fixit later gave them training so they'd be able to work the command center as revealed.
In Mighty Big Trouble, Denny and Russell were present when the Autobots returned from Egypt with a high energy pulse generator. The pair had to take cover when the scrapyard was invaded by hostile Mini-Cons and then a group of Decepticons arrived and abducted Fixit, Jetstorm and Slipstream. It turned out the Decepticons were working for Starscream, who used the captured Mini-Cons as leverage to take Bumblebee prisoner.
In Mini-Con Madness, Denny and his son helped fill in Optimus once he arrived and worked the command center while the rest of the team went in search of Starscream.
Season 3: Combiner Force
In King of the Hill (Part 1), Denny played cheerleader at Russell's championship football match.
In King of the Hill (Part 2), when Russell became discouraged because the opposing team had a kid who was able to block his kicks, Denny gave him a pep talk and Russell was able to return to the game and help win it.
In Defrosted, Bumblebee annoyed Denny by searching through the scrapyard for his Decepticon Hunter. While the rest of the team were on a mission, Denny and Russell had to cover for Fixit, who had becoming addicted to a handheld game.
In Blurred, during another mission, Drift borrowed a jet boat from Denny.
Denny is a collector of a lot of items that he stores in his scrapyard as he refers to them other than "junk". When he was in his youth, he was an avid fan of the band called Rear Axle, along with Bumblebee. Denny was quite surprised to not only have his son stay by him while Russell's mother was away in Copenhagen, but to have Autobot alien allies stay at his scrapyard. Denny has shown from time to time to be a helpful human ally along with Russell in keeping the Autobots under low profile through uses of numerous disguises with different names.
When he is in disguise, Denny acts more extensively which sometimes fools other humans from discovering the Autobots. He has gone as far as to work with Fixit in making Decepticon Hunters for the Autobots which proves he is capable of building Cybertronian weaponry and makes him more than just reliable for the team. As a parent, he keeps in mind about protecting and looking out for Russell especially when it comes to missions in the field. He also provides Bumblebee some parenting advice for his inexperienced team in some occasions.
- Denny's shirt attire is a little similar to a shirt that Max Tennyson from Ben 10 would be seen to wear.
- Denny has similar traits to Cade Yeager in Transformers: Age of Extinction.
- They're both single fathers struggling to raise their child.
- They're both inventors.
- They both like to collect old unique items.
- They can both act a little immature at times.
- Both their kids wants them to do something, other than inventing and collecting old junk, that will actually make them money.
- Denny's relationship to Bumblebee is similar to Cade and Optimus Prime's relationship in Age of Extinction.