|Specifics: Toy and cassette mode|
- "From the secret files of Teletraan II: In the days of Megatron, Decepticons developed the art of espionage, using cassette technology. Their first cassette, Laserbeak, could fly undetected into any Autobot stronghold, record information and then return to base. Then the Decepticons decided to increase their spying abilities with Ratbat. As a bat, Ratbat can hide in crevices that Laserbeak can't reach, and he's especially effective in tunnels, caves or in the darkness of space. Ratbat records from the Autobots' most carefully guarded secrets. The Autobots had no choice but to strike back with these Decepticons techniques of stealth, building a force of cassette Transformers of their own, with Blaster as their guardian. They constructed Ramhorn, the rhino who can use animalistic force if cornered, and Steeljaw, the lion who can crawl through the foliage of any alien world, to sneak up on Decepticons. They also bolstered their cassette force with Rewind and Eject, who can transform to robot mode and use more conventional fighting force techniques."
- ―Narrator in the Secret Files of Teletraan II
Laserbeak is a follower, not a leader. In fact, he can often be found perched atop the shoulders of either Soundwave or whoever leads the Decepticons at a particular time. He can be utterly depended on to complete any mission that he is assigned.
Laserbeak is also an interrogator, though he is rarely depicted in that role, more often seen (or rather not seen) as a spy, roosting on some obscure perch, playing voyeur and eavesdropping on Autobot conversations. His backpack features two ruby-powered independently-targetable lasers that he uses to torture his subjects with. He's a coward, though, and when his ruby supplies run low, he transforms from ruthless condor to squawking chicken.
- "Megatron, sort of complimenting Laserbeak, but mostly insulting Starscream"
- ―The Transformers: The Movie [src]
- Preliminary name: Slazer
- Japanese name: Condor
- French name (Canada): Vautour (Vulture)
- Hungarian name: Lézercsőr
- Italian name: Gufo ("Owl")
- Portuguese name (Portugal comics): Lança-Laser
- Portuguese name (Brazil comics): Bicolaser
- Russian Tv dub name (6th channel): Lazernik
- Chinese name (Taiwan): Léi-shè Yīng (雷射鷹, "Laser Hawk") / Léi-shè Nǐau (雷射鳥, "Laser Bird")
- Chinese name (China): Jiguang Niao (激光鳥, "Laser Bird")
Marvel Comics continuity
Laserbeak was among Megatron's attack party which attacked the Autobots aboard the Ark, crashing on Earth 4 million years ago. When the Autobots and Decepticons were revived in 1984, Laserbeak was given the alternate mode of a red cassette tape. He aided the Decepticons in their building of their new base, constructed of parts from Harrison Nuclear Power Plant, and joined in their attack on Sparkplug Witwicky's auto repair shop, where he got shot in the face by Optimus Prime.
Though Laserbeak can speak, he stopped displaying this ability around the time that Shockwave arrived to reverse the Autobots' seemingly final victory over the Decepticons in a desperate last stand at the Ark. During Shockwave's rule, he sent Soundwave (with Laserbeak stowed) to infiltrate Blackrock Aerospace Plant Number One, where they were carried inside in cassette deck mode by plant workers Ferdy and Gabe. Once inside, the two quickly sieged the plant's controls and enslaved its workers. Laserbeak served many functions during the Decepticons' occupation of this plant, such as squawking, heating up the workers' pizzas, and delivering recorded messages to the human military poised outside. Laserbeak later accompanied Soundwave and a few of the other cassette-tape Decepticons to aid their impostor Optimus Prime's ambush of the Autobots, though all of them were easily defeated once the real Optimus Prime was restored.
When Megatron and Shockwave both went missing for a time, Soundwave took charge of the Decepticons and despatched Laserbeak to spy on a group of Autobots searching for the rogue Dinobot Slag. He ultimately provided some inadvertent assistance to the Autobots, as Jetfire shoved him into Slag's jaw, leaving him somewhat singed.
Unlike the Seekers, Soundwave, Laserbeak, and the other animal cassettes remained more loyal to Megatron than to Shockwave, and so when the former Decepticon leader was discovered in a coal mine, they arrived swiftly to refuel and reclaim him. One of Megatron's first acts upon returning to the Decepticons was to attack the Ark while seemingly all of the Autobots were attacking the Decepticon base, and he took the the Seekers and all of the cassette Decepticons (minus Ravage) with him. Unfortunately, the Ark was now defended by the newly-built Omega Supreme. All of the attacking Decepticons except for Laserbeak and Megatron were obliterated, and it was only thanks to the wounded Laserbeak that he and the Decepticon leader escaped with their lives. When they returned to the Decepticon base, Laserbeak perched not on Megatron's shoulder, but Shockwave's, silently acknowledging their true leader. Shockwave rebuked Megatron for his poor command, but Megatron surprised him with a rationalization for his actions. As Shockwave again submitted to Megatron's leadership, Laserbeak exchanged perching positions, signifying the transfer of command.
When Galvatron travelled back in time and defeated Megatron it was once again Laserbeak who signified the transfer of Decepticon command in this manner. After Galvatron returned to the future Laserbeak promptly dug Megatron out from under the ruins of Galvatron's weapon and perched on the restored Decepticon commander.Years later, after Ratbat had assumed command in the absence of both Megatron and Soundwave, Laserbeak served as his right hand bird in his plan to hypnotise humans into giving them fuel. When Buster Witwicky managed to break the hypnotic control, the two cassettes were forced to flee from an angry mob. Later, the Decepticons ambushed the Autobots on the Moon while Grimlock and Blaster were dueling for leadership. Laserbeak counted Jetfire among his victories, but he and the others were called back to their ship to retreat once Blaster and Grimlock disabled its guidance systems.
Ratbat's troops soon met up with Scorponok's troops, which resulted in a Decepticon civil war. Laserbeak and the others were called off the attack, however, when it was revealed that the civil war was instigated by Starscream to divert attention away from his grab for the Underbase. After a false start, an unprecedented Autobot/Decepticon alliance was formed to stop Starscream, and Laserbeak was assigned to a team headed by both Fortress Maximus and Soundwave. Confronting the Underbase-enhanced Starscream in Buenos Aires, Laserbeak met his doom.
In 2009, one possible future saw the Decepticons with control over all of North America and only a handful of Autobots and humans to oppose them. During a last-ditch Autobot/human raid on their New York stronghold, Laserbeak was instrumental in diverting Crossblades, first disabling the Autobot and then ordering his comrades to blow him out of the sky.
When Megatron reactivated on Earth and began building a power base again, Soundwave naturally returned to his side, and Laserbeak naturally came with him.
Laserbeak was the first of the cassette Transformers. Prior to his arrival on Earth, Laserbeak had less of an avian shape, resembling instead a stylized jet with an ovoid silhouette and a hooked nosecone. He still transformed into a cassette, which is kind of strange when you consider his "carrier" transformed into a lamp-post and not necessarily any device that played cassettes. But anyway, this Laserbeak often carried out spy missions, able to sneak into places the larger Soundwave could not manage, including Iacon, the Autobots' headquarters. There, Laserbeak learned of the Autobot mission to seek out new sources of energy away from Cybertron, which prompted a Decepticon interception mission in turn. This led to the whole lot of these spacefaring Transformers crashlanding on Earth and taking a four million-year dirtnap in the heart of a spastic volcano.
In the year 1984, the Transformers were awakened by volcanic activity, and Laserbeak was reformatted with terrestrial aesthetics in both robot and alt-mode. His alt-mode was an audiocassette, while his robot mode was that of a vulture. His missions, though, were largely unchanged, and he continued to serve as a spy.
Laserbeak was the first Decepticon to tangle with Autobots on Earth when he was dispatched by Soundwave and Megatron to chase down two snooping Autobot spies, Hound and Cliffjumper. The Autobots tried to scurry away, splitting up so that Laserbeak couldn't follow both of them. He had the last laugh (or squawk) on them, as he launched one of his laser cannons to follow Cliffjumper remotely while he continued to hound Hound, at least until Cliffjumper gas-bombed it.
After Megatron was accidentally sent to Cybertron following an early space bridge test Laserbeak and Rumble were present to greet Megatron on his return. Laserbeak perched on Megatron's arm, signifying Megatron's resumption of command of the Earthbound Decepticons.
On a later assignment, Laserbeak investigated the prognosis of an ailing Optimus Prime and took the opportunity to blast the fallen leader in his open chest cavity. This exacerbated the damage and made the Autobot mission to find a replacement cosmotron for Prime of great priority.
Laserbeak and Buzzsaw discovered the city of Sub-Atlantica on the bottom of the ocean floor, which led to an uneasy alliance between the Sub-Atlanticans and the Decepticons, and the subsequent attack of both parties on Washington, D.C.
One of Laserbeak's greatest claims to fame was that he was partly responsible for the Battle of Autobot City in 2005. By that point, the Decepticons had succeeded in conquering Cybertron, but the Autobots retained two of its moons and a large force on Autobot City. Laserbeak was dispatched to spy on Moonbase One, where he overheard Optimus Prime order a supply ship to acquire Energon for an upcoming assault. Laserbeak took the information back to Megatron, who hijacked the shuttle and used it to attack Autobot City. Megatron was left to rot in space by Starscream, and reformatted into Galvatron. However, Laserbeak was no longer able to perch on his leader's shoulder or arm. Also, that bureaucrat Ratbat was usually sent on the spying missions after this point. Laserbeak has been feeling unfulfilled ever since.
Then again, who'd want to perch on the shoulder of a madman who is known to blast more of his troops in 4 minutes than the Autobots had in 4000000+ years? It got so bad that when Motormaster and Swindle threatened mutiny, Laserbeak sided with the would-be rebels. (He sure has guts considering his courage rating is a mere 2.) The fact that Laserbeak was with the mutiny may have led to Cyclonus becoming desperate enough to seek aid on Torkulon. In any case, the mutiny never happened, even though Galvatron's sanity remained debatable.
Call of the Future
Laserbeak has some involvement during the search of the investigation team. He finds the Autobots at the Geothermal Plant, finds the UFO, and tells Megatron of Starscream pilfering some energon cubes.
Dreamwave comics continuity
After Optimus Prime became the new Autobot leader, Laserbeak did a spying mission, where he saw the Autobots preparing starships for evacuation. Megatron was unconcerned, however, as he had other plans. Unfortunately, Starscream shot a bridge holding Megatron and Prime, sending them to their presumed destruction. Laserbeak was then manhandled by Starscream's personal henchmen and had all the information within him forcibly downloaded, all at Starscream's orders. This is why Starscream will never be Decepticon leader, as he doesn't know how to get Laserbeak to perch on him. Megatron eventually returned and put Starscream in his place. Sometime later, Megatron vanished in a Space Bridge accident, and control of the Decepticons split into several smaller factions. Laserbeak and the other Cassettes remained with Soundwave, under the command of Shockwave in the primary Decepticon faction.
After the crash of the Nemesis, Laserbeak was reactivated on Earth in 1984 and fought alongside the Decepticons in that pocket version of the greater war. Believed dead after the explosion of the Ark II, Laserbeak and most of the other Transformers were in fact salvaged and reprogrammed by the human named Lazarus. The remote-controlled Laserbeak was sent on a mission of destruction with several other Cybertronians before Megatron broke free and restored autonomous control to his Decepticon brethren. When Shockwave later arrived on Earth and defeated Megatron, Soundwave allied himself and the Cassettes with Shockwave until they returned to Cybertron. At that point, Starscream made a proposal that they return to Earth (now virtually free of Autobots) and take control of its fuel resources. Soundwave agreed, and he brought Laserbeak and the other Cassettes back with them to Earth. After briefly tolerating Screamer's leadership, Megatron mercifully returned and reassumed control of Laserbeak and the Decepticon forces on Earth.
Devil's Due G.I. Joe vs. the Transformers comics continuity
Laserbeak was one of the many Transformers recovered from the crashed Ark by Cobra. He was repaired and retrofitted by Doctor Mindbender, who proudly displayed him, Soundwave, and his fellow Mini-Cassettes to Destro. Laserbeak was released by Soundwave, along with Rumble, Frenzy, Ratbat, and Ravage, during an attack on the SPS Center. Laserbeak managed to escape the first wave of G.I. Joe defenders and enter the building, gunning down Gung-Ho and Clutch. Shortly afterwards, he was decapitated by Snake-Eyes. His body was taken into custody by the Joes.
The Beast Within
When the Beast formed, Starscream ordered the Seekers to attack the behemoth. Laserbeak, thinking that he was a Seeker, joined them, and was smacked along with Skywarp and Thundercracker, blowing up as a result. He blew up real good.
IDW comics continuity
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Much later, Laserbeak was employed by Soundwave to remotely spy on Bludgeon in 1984 but was knocked out in the skirmish. He was later buried by a volcanic eruption, but dug out a year later by a mysterious group of humans. He was chained up in the Skywatch headquarters along with Ravage and reprogrammed to seek out the other Transformers. Needless to say, he was very pissed.
On his first mission out with Ravage, however, the pair's signal from Skywatch was blocked by Soundwave.
At some point, Laserbeak hooked up with Soundwave and joined Megatron's forces. He helped destroy some human jets.
Timelines:Dawn of Future's Past
At the end of the great war most Decepticons granted amnesty simply retired and vanished from public life. So too would have been the fate of Laserbeak if not for the intervention of the Predacon Divebomb . Divebomb granted Laserbeak, Buzzsaw, and Ravage a new lease on life, rebuilding them into members of the new faction of Predacons.
Predacon Megatron's theft of the Golden Disk was closely watched by Divebomb, who sent Laserbeak and Buzzsaw to ensure Megatron and his rogues reached their destination. Their ship intercepted the Axalon, pummelling it with missiles. Before it could come back for another pass, it was fired upon by the Chromia 10, giving the Axalon enough time to restore enough power to return fire and completely destroy Laserbeak and Buzzsaw's ship, with the pair inside. He's in the Allspark now, trying to perch on Primus' shoulder.
- Frenzy & Laserbeak (Cassette 2-pack, 1984/1985)
- Originally a Microchange "Micro Cassette Robo Condor", Laserbeak transforms into a microcassette that can fit into the tape door of the Soundwave and Blaster toys. He was released in a two-pack with Frenzy in the U.S. and Europe. His chromed thruster-blaster add-ons have some slight mold variations to them, like several other early Transformers toys.
- Condor (Cassettron, 1985/1986/1987)
- Japanese ID number: 20, D-60, D-105
- Laserbeak (AKA "Condor") was available by himself in Japan. Like all Japanese cassettes, he came with a clear tape case to be "stored" in. He was re-released in Japan in 1986, and again in 1987.
- Soundwave (Decepticon, 2003)
- Japanese ID number: TFC-10
- Laserbeak was reissued alongside Soundwave in 2003, as part of Takara's Transformers Collection line and again in 2007, as part of the Transformers Encore line. The 2007 release had the orange on his stickers modified.
- Soundwave (6" Cybertron Heroes)
- Among the smallest of all Transformers, this toy is a tiny 1" wide rendition of his cassette form, though without the holes normally seen on tapes. Like the larger Soundwave figure he comes with, his design deviates somewhat from his true design, instead being black with red stripes. He also does not come with his jet pack.
- Laserbeak and Buzzsaw (Souvenir set, 2006)
- A redeco of the Energon Terrorcon Divebomb, Laserbeak transforms from a humanoid robot to a robotic bird of prey. He came with a pair of clear-blue blades that can combine to form a large energon weapon, plus a blue Decepticon-style energon chip. He was available only as a poly-bagged set with his mold-mate Buzzsaw, sold as an "at the show" souvenir set at BotCon 2006, limited to 500 pieces.
- This mold was also used to make the Terrorcon Blackout.
- Soundwave (Decepticon, 2007)
- Laserbeak was reissued alongside Soundwave and Ravage in 2007 as part of the Classics series.
- Though Laserbeak is portrayed as a normal audio cassette in the various fictions, his original toy was a microcassette. (Likewise, Soundwave's toy was a microcassette recorder, rather than the "stereo cassette deck" he's stated to be elsewhere.)
- Laserbeak snores when he sleeps. It sounds just like a little chainsaw!
- Laserbeak often can be seen carrying Starscream around, doing so in both "A Prime Problem" and "Starscream's Brigade".
- It's possible that Beast Wars Lazorbeak was intended to be a new form for Laserbeak. Lazorbeak's on-package bio reads, "Lazorbeak upholds his motto of believing the only good point he likes about the Maximals is their melting point," a reference to Laserbeak's original motto. Also, both use laser weapons which frequently run out of energy.
- Laserbeak is possibly the most effective Decepticon in the entire G1 cartoon. Some of his shining moments include defeating Optimus Prime himself and shooting Starscream out of the air ("A Prime Problem"), as well as chasing down both Hound and Cliffjumper, defeating Hound and leaving Cliffjumper to seek help ("More Than Meets the Eye, Part 1"). He also managed to infiltrate Autobot HQ multiple times, and the information he gathered was often central to Megatron's plans.
- A possible further testament to Laserbeak's efficiency (or cowardice) is his habit of perching on the shoulder of the current Decepticon leader (read: scariest person in the room). This is generally the most difficult place (in the leader's presence) for the leader to aim his weapons at.
- Laserbeak was part of the original Decepticon cast for the 2007 Transformers movie, but was cut along with Ravage when Soundwave was removed. As part of the Sector Seven ARG, a "file" of confirmed N.B.E. activity has Laserbeak changing from cassette mode to robot mode (while remaining the same size).