Optimus Prime is a character that appears in the The Transformers television series.
Personality & Character
Optimus Prime began his life as a young robot named Orion Pax, a simple dock worker during the Golden Age of Cybertron nine million years ago, with a girlfriend named Ariel, and a best friend named Dion. At the time, a new breed of robot had recently appeared on the planet - ones with new robot-mode flight powers that made Orion idolize them. Unfortunately for Orion, when Megatron, the leader of these robots, approached him with inquiries about using one of the dock warehouses, Orion fell for the deception and he and Ariel were critically wounded when Megatron and his forces then attacked in order to claim the energy stored there. Searching for someone to help them, the time-displaced Aerialbots took Orion and Ariel to the ancient Autobot Alpha Trion, who used them as the first subjects for the new reconstruction process he had developed - rebuilding the frail Autobot frames into battle-hardy configurations.
With this reconstruction, Orion Pax became Optimus Prime, the first of the Autobot warriors, who took the mantle of leadership as the civil war against Megatron and Decepticons erupted, while Ariel was rebuilt into Elita One, the commander of the Autobot resistance on Cybertron.
As leader of the Autobots, Optimus headed up the Autobots' mission to search out new worlds with new sources of energy to revitalize the depleted Cybertron. However, shortly after its launch, the Autobots' craft was attacked by the Decepticon space cruiser and boarded by Megatron and the Decepticons. In the ensuing struggle, the g-forces of a nearby planet pulled both crafts down, and the Autobots' ship crashed into a volcano, thrusting all the occupants of the ship into emergency stasis.
Four million years later, in the Earth year A.D. 1984, a volcanic eruption jarred the ship's computer, Teletraan I back to life, and it reactivated the Decepticons, programming them with new Earth-based disguise modes. As a petty parting gesture, Starscream fired upon the Autobot ship, creating a landslide that knocked Optimus into the path of the computer's restoration beam, restoring him to life, and beginning the war anew on Earth.
Optimus was perpetually at the forefront of the action throughout the early years of the war on Earth, usually confronting Megatron, and, in some rare instances, being forced to team up with him for the greater good (or the lesser evil). He has suffered his fair share of battlefield scrapes, almost meeting his end when his vital cosmotron component was critically damaged by the Decepticon jets and Laserbeak , and suffering a severe - though unfair - defeat when Megatron challenged him to one-on-one combat while imbued with the different powers of all the Decepticons.
Generally, Optimus acting in a commanding role as part of larger battles and events, but played prominent and solo roles in a few, also.
In 1985, Megatron created a perfect duplicate of him, leaving the Autobots unable to differentiate between the two until the clone disregarded the safety of their human companion, Spike Witwicky, exposing the deception. Later in the same year, Optimus's fame and prowess led him to become the target of the demented big-game hunter, Lord Chumley, who sought his head to go along with his other rare trophies. Entering the hunter's estate alone, Optimus defeated all the traps and beasts lying in wait and brought Chumley to justice. The same year also saw Elita One captured by the Decepticons on Cybertron and used to lure Optimus there alone; although knowing it was a trap, he ventured in solo and was defeated by the Decepticons and nearly destroyed, until Elita's stasis-field powers froze time long enough for them to escape. Optimus was forced to seek out Alpha Trion to save the wounded Elita's life, and in the process, rediscovered his forgotten connection to his creator. When Megatron created the Stunticons, Optimus decided to have the Aerialbots created as a countermeasure, though Alpha Trion gave his life by merging with Vector Sigma to ensure their creation. For some reason, his memorial was also built 20 years before his death.
While under the leadership of Optimus Prime, the Decepticons succeeded in seizing control of all of Cybertron over the course of the next twenty years, forcing the Autobots to operate from their new city on Earth, and from two bases on Cybertron's moons. In the Earth year 2005, Optimus was stationed on Moonbase One, and dispatched troops to Earth to acquire energy for an upcoming strike on Cybertron. The Decepticons, however, got wind of the plan and attacked the shuttle, killing its occupants. Their scheme was to use the shuttle to stage a surprise attack on Autobot City; an attack which would have succeeded, if not for a distress call which summoned Optimus and support troops to Earth.
Optimus Prime foresaw that his final battle with his arch-nemesis was looming, deciding that the Decepticons must be stopped, no matter the cost. Optimus engaged in a massive assault, killing or wounding Megatron's most elite warriors, including Soundwave and all the Seekers (minus Starscream). In the ensuing battle with Megatron, Optimus Prime sustained fatal injuries, but not before nearly destroying Megatron, turning the tide of battle and forcing the Decepticons to flee. Despite the efforts of Perceptor, Optimus Prime could not be saved. Knowing his time had come, he passed the Matrix of Leadership, and with it leadership of the Autobots, into the hands of his old friend, the city's commander, Ultra Magnus. With his last ounce of energy, he muttered "'Til all are one," then died; his life-force becoming one with the ancient wisdom contained within the Matrix. When the young Autobot, Hot Rod, opened the Matrix within the body of the planet-eater, Unicron, Hot Rod was transfigured into Rodimus Prime, the new leader of the Autobots. As this process happened, Optimus's voice was heard once more.
Optimus Prime's body was entombed in a massive deep-space mausoleum with the many other fallen Autobots, but his corpse was desecrated by the Quintessons in 2006 when they reanimated it as part of an attempt to destroy the Autobots by using Optimus to lure their space fleet into a trap. However, the Matrix was able to purify Optimus of the Quintesson influence, and he got the other Autobots clear while he piloted his flagship into the Quintessons' detonator, triggering the explosion of a nearby sun.
Optimus was believed to have been destroyed in the explosion, but in reality, before the flagship impacted with the detonator, his body was recovered from the craft by two human scientists, Jessica Morgan and Gregory Swofford. As their ship departed, it was coated in solar spores released by the explosion of the sun. Jessica's father, Mark Morgan, loathed the Autobots, and his hatred only grew when an attempt by the Decepticons to steal a heat-resistant alloy he had developed resulted in Jessica being paralyzed. Swofford and Morgan reconstructed Optimus Prime's body in an attempt to use it as a delivery system for the spores, which induced hatred and madness, in order to destroy the Transformers. However, when they could not reanimate him, they used his body as a lure instead, bringing the Autobots to their lab, where they were infected. As this "Hate Plague" proceeded to spread across the galaxy, Sky Lynx--acting under the last official orders of Rodimus Prime before he was infected--retrieved a Quintesson, who fully restored Optimus Prime to life.
After being appraised of the situation, Optimus and Sky Lynx retrieved a half dozen Autobots who had been badly damaged, but were not infected with the plague. With the aid of the same Quintesson who restored him, they were repaired and reactivated. Optimus decided he needed to retrieve the Matrix of Leadership from Rodimus, as only in its wisdom could he hope to find a solution to the Plague. At this point, Jessica Morgan informed him of the heat resistant alloy, but also that it had been stolen by the Decepticons. Optimus led the other Autobots to Char where he convinced Galvatron to turn it over to him. Only he and Sky Lynx managed to escape infection and return to Earth. Coating himself in Morgan's heat-resistant alloy, Optimus forcefully reclaimed the Matrix from Rodimus. Journeying inside, he learned about the origins of the Plague from It and learned that only wisdom could destroy the Plague. Awakening, he unleashed the concentrated wisdom of the Matrix itself, which spread across the Galaxy and wiped out the Hate Plague. Afterward, Optimus resumed command of the Autobots.
Optimus Prime began to suffer visions following the release of the Matrix's energy, which foretold a great transformation for Cybertron. Events began with the Decepticons' theft of the key to the Plasma Energy Chamber, which forced Optimus to consult Alpha Trion within Vector Sigma, learning that the mega-computer had orchestrated events in order to restore Cybertron's Golden Age. However, under the command of Optimus Prime, the control of Cybertron was lost to the Decepticons. When the Plasma Energy Chamber was opened and threatened to drive Earth's Sun supernova, Spike Witwicky and the other organic Nebulans who had become involved in the conflict as a result of these events were able to drain off the excess solar energy and revitalize Cybertron, with the Autobots winning back control of Cybertron.
At an undetermined point in time, through unknown circumstances, Optimus Prime was upgraded into a Powermaster body, and began associating with a young (and annoying) human boy named Tommy Kennedy. Tommy enjoyed doing school reports on the history of the Transformers, and who better to educate him on that subject than Optimus? While Optimus Prime recounted the Autobots' first encounter with Nebulos, Tommy Kennedy decided that it would be awesome to be Optimus Prime's Headmaster, and instantly demanded this honor. However, after Optimus Prime's story was completed, the Autobot leader said it would be a lot of hard work, and very dangerous. Tommy chickened out. Optimus Prime dodged a bullet. After finishing a story, Optimus would often leave Tommy asking numerous questions only to inform him that they'd be answered another day before flying off into outer space. Some times, before leaving to attend intergalactic peace conferences, Optimus would keep Tommy entertained with educational music videos "The Touch", performed by Stan Bush.
Notes & Trivia