Okay, I know. You see my name, you see me writing another Transformers post, yeah, I get it. But just bear with me, alright?
Michael Bay’s Transformers franchise has had its fair share of plot holes, many of which go as far back as the first film from 2007. But what if I told you the worst film in the entire franchise had shoehorned in something big enough to fill the gaping void that was the Transformer’s largest plot hole?
“What is that plot hole?” you may find yourselves asking. In simple terms, it’s the villain problem. In each film, Megatron or his underlings attempt to find a device or ancient relic that has the potential to create ultimate power for Megatron’s dastardly plots. Each film also establishes that Megatron’s plots are unique to these films…or do they? Let’s start with Transformers (2007).
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Part One: Transformers (2007)
Welcome to a time from our past. iPhones were just barely a thing. The Xbox 360 was one of the largest gaming consoles in the world (emphasized by its product placement towards the end of the film). And the Autobots and Decepticons have arrived on Earth, seeking an ancient relic that has the power to turn Earth’s technology into new Transformers for Megatron (Hugo Weaving) to use to conquer the universe. Or, at least, that’s what the film wants you to think.
In Transformers (2007), the Autobots arrive on Earth with the assumption that Megatron’s plan was to use the AllSpark, one of Cybertron’s greatest relics that gave each Transformer life, to build a Decepticon army that has the strength to take over all of the known Universe. But, at no point in the entire film did Megatron actually state this was his goal. The only thing Megatron is concerned with is getting the AllSpark, which solidifies the assumption made of his plans in the minds of the audience and the human characters within the film.
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Truth is, this was never once shown that this was Megatron’s true motive. So what was it? More on that in a bit.
Part Two: Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen (2009)
Arise, Megatronus Prime! No, I don’t mean Megatron. In the Transformers canon, Megatron took the name of one of the Thirteen Primes, the Transformers’ original leaders in ancient days. Megatron took the name of Megatronus Prime, one he believed was stricken from history due to him being the forgotten Prime. In reality, Megatronus Prime wasn’t The Forgotten, he was The Fallen (Tony Todd).
Okay, so now you know the origins of Megatron’s name. So, now let me tell you who Megatronus was.
Megatronus Prime was a member of the original Thirteen Primes, Transformers created by Primus (essentially Transformers God) to combat his greatest foe: Unicron (if Primus is God, Unicron is the Devil). Unicron corrupted Megatronus, and Megatronus turned on his brethren, causing them to seal him in a tomb in an alternate dimension and dub him The Fallen. In the film continuity, the Primes sealed away a mystical key of great power to hide it from any Transformer who had ill intentions, and self-sacrifice to protect humanity and their descendants.
The Fallen rises again, the events of Revenge of the Fallen happen, and Megatronus Prime is destroyed by Optimus literally tearing his heart out and his face off.
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The Fallen’s motivations in the film seemed simple enough, right? He wanted to drain the energy of the Earth’s sun to turn into Energon (the Transformers’ lifeblood). This process would kill all of humanity, thus fulfilling The Fallen’s revenge…right? Wrong. Someone as powerful as The Fallen would never stoop so low as to utilize his revenge against something like humanity. No, The Fallen wanted revenge on Primus himself.
But how could he achieve this? Through Megatron. It’s established in the film that Megatron went to Earth in Transformers (2007) on a mission to retrieve the AllSpark but failed. Upon reporting to The Fallen, his master, Megatron was informed of a new plot to get Energon: The Star Harvester that The Fallen initially attempted to use in 10,000 BC.
Part Three: Transformers: Dark of the Moon (2011)
One of the Transformers fandom’s favorite films in the entire franchise, Dark of the Moon has its own fair share of plot holes, likely the largest ones in the entire franchise.
According to the film, Megatron agreed to meet up with the then Autobot Leader Sentinel Prime (Leonard Nimoy) on Earth. There’s the plot hole, right? How would Megatron know to reunite with Sentinel on Earth if Megatron didn’t know where to go to find the AllSpark? The writing in the film doesn’t suggest this, but it didn’t have to, as Revenge of the Fallen already established that Megatron was sent to Earth after the AllSpark.
The plot in Dark of the Moon involved Sentinel Prime using his invention, The Space Bridge, to bring Cybertron to Earth, with Sentinel believing that Megatron intended to enslave humanity in order to rebuild the planet. Megatron likely believed this plan as well, since it is reasonable to assume that The Fallen ordered Megatron to do so. It’s important to assume as much to fill the plot hole the way it needs to be done.
Alright, so what’s this gigantic revelation?
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Part Four: Transformers: The Last Knight (2017)
Oh, The Last Knight. One of, if not the most, controversial film in the entire franchise. The film had so many plot threads that it didn’t know what it wanted to do with them. Optimus turning evil for a space sorceress, Megatron gathers a team of Suicide Squad members to destroy the Autobots, the major subplot of Marky Mark traveling to England to learn he is a descendant of King Arthur (the eponymous Last Knight), there was so much going on in this film that it’s kind of hard to make sense of it all. But there was one tiny aspect of the film that is guaranteed to fix all of the previous films’ plot holes.
The answer is…Unicron.
In The Last Knight, Quintessa’s (Gemma Chan) goal was to siphon the power of the hidden Unicron to rebuild Cybertron, which she had brought back to Earth following its decimation in Dark of the Moon. She confirmed to Optimus and the audience that Unicron was, in fact, the Earth itself. This plot line was shoehorned in, having been appropriated from the fan-favorite cartoon series Transformers: Prime which introduced the concept that inherently links Earth and Cybertron together.
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Part Five: Unicron’s role
Alright, here are the answers to each film’s plot holes. In Transformers (2007), Unicron willed the AllSpark to Earth. He told The Fallen where the AllSpark was, who in turn sent Megatron to Earth to retrieve the AllSpark. He also told Megatron to make an agreement with Sentinel Prime to reunite on Earth with the AllSpark and the Space Bridge so they can use Earth’s resources to rebuild the planet together.
In truth, The Fallen intended to use the AllSpark to revitalize Unicron and bring him back to life. He also intended to use Sentinel Prime’s Space Bridge to bring Cybertron, the physical embodiment of Primus, directly to Unicron so he may destroy Primus once and for all. However, Sam Witwicky used the AllSpark to kill Megatron, destroying the AllSpark, and forcing The Fallen to revert to Plan B: The Sun Harvester.
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Upon Megatron’s resurrection, The Fallen gave him the mission to acquire the Matrix of Leadership and to kill Optimus Prime, the last of the Thirteen Primes, so that The Fallen can use the Matrix to use the Star Harvester to drain the energy of the Sun and turn it into power, thus reviving Unicron. But Sam Witwicky used the Matrix to revive Optimus, who in turn destroyed The Fallen.
Then, with Megatron unsure how to continue, the Decepticons ultimately chose to lead the Autobots to Sentinel Prime, with Megatron’s new goal to use humanity and Earth’s resources to conquer Cybertron once and for all. Until Optimus murdered both of them, bringing a seeming end to the conflict once and for all.
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The whole original trilogy was Megatron following the orders of The Fallen to begin the process of restoring Unicron, with the oblivious Autobots managing to stop him at every turn. It’s worth noting that I believe Megatron had absolutely no idea the Earth was Unicron, as Megatron’s hatred of humanity and Earth was painfully obvious. I doubt he would have chosen to bad-mouth the Earth if he knew it was truly Unicron.
Part Six: Conclusion
So, there you go. The Last Knight was able to tie together all the previous films, save for Transformers: Age of Extinction (2014). To be honest, Age of Extinction doesn’t have much to do with the overarching story of Unicron. Sure, Galvatron (Frank Welker), Megatron’s reincarnation, planned to use the Seed to cyberform Earth to build another army, but it wasn’t his story so much as it was Lockdown’s (Mark Ryan).
Either way, Unicron’s goals and those of his herald, The Fallen (who can be argued to be the first Terrorcon) were large enough to fill the gap between the three original films, and I’ve finally put them all together.
But what does this mean for the future of the Transformers? Time will tell once the release of Transformers: Rise of the Beasts confirms the Terrorcons’ plot and how the film affects the overall timeline of the franchise.
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