Optimus Prime is the real villain?

I have never been a huge tv watcher and still don’t watch very much by myself. However I have 2 sons who enjoy watching tv, specifically anything involving super heroes. There is a lot of selection out there for them to watch. Marvel has its own set of cartoons from the X-Men to Avengers. DC comics has Batman, Green Lantern and the Justice League and then there is everything else. Most of this stuff I watch with them to get an idea of what they are watching but also to monitor the violence factor. It is some what amusing to see how it varies from show to show. There are actually some shows that focus on story line and entertainment value then violence. I imagine that some of these shows are written with parents in mind (kind of like Sesame Street). This definitely makes some of them worth watching for parents (particularly fathers who read these comics and watched the cartoons when they were young).


The story lines and entertainment in most of the shows is quite good. There are quite a few elements of the discussion of morality and why they are fighting for the causes they are. What struck me was that the show Transformers Prime seemed to me the most conflicted of all shows. When you hear about what the back story is to why the war between the Decepticons and the Autobots even started you really have to question who is the bad guy and the good guy. The story is that Megatron is a Spartacus type character who fights as a gladiator for the people. He eventually wants to be political and return the power of the council to the people. The council disagrees with this and empowers Optimus Prime to fight of Megatron.

The story continues that the people (Transformers) back Megatron and eventually over throw the government but not with out there being so much damage to their home world (Cybertron) that it dies. The government supporters flee, this is the Autobots and go to earth. They tell the people of earth that they are refugees and seek an alliance. A bit later the Decepticons come earth and never really show themselves to the locals and instead want to harvest Energon from the planet. They are instead attacked by the Autobots who want to deny them this energon and the war more or less continues. In fact there have been a couple of episodes where Megatron tries to leave or atleast have some kind of truce.

I could continue on this subject, but it seems to me that while the Autobots are portrayed as the good guys I think it is a bit more nuanced then that. The two sides are essentially fighting for the same thing they both want Cybertron restored and try to do it in their own way. This is why this show is so good, there are multiple levels of thought built in to it. I wonder whether the show writers did this intentionally or whether it was an accident. All the seasons of Transformers Prime can be found on Netflix.


2 thoughts on “Optimus Prime is the real villain?

    • It’s amazing how good some of the modern day cartoons have gotten. I think it is because they know that adults watch them too. Oyeah and it is likely they are written by people with kids.

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