It was the summer of 1986 and the Autobots and Decepticons were on the big screen in their own animated movie. What I had already seen had been fairly shocking, but things might have been about to take a turn for the worse.
You might remember that Spike and Bumblebee were on one of Cybertron’s moons. What they didn’t know was that they were directly in the path of Unicron and he was ready to consume anything in his way.
I had to watch helplessly as Moonbase Two was destroyed and the ship carrying Bumblebee and Spike were sucked into the maw of Unicron.
In the opening sequence, Unicron had destroyed an entire planet and its civilization. There had been one survivor and he met a horrific end much later.
To be devoured by Unicron was to meet your end. The movie had made that more than obvious.
However, there was some hope that Spike would be spared; he had a son. He might have a slim chance of surviving this situation.
I couldn’t say the same for Bumblebee. No one, not once during the entire film, mention him. No one seemed worried about him. No one seemed to care.
Then something happened; the Autobots were battling Unicron from the inside and we finally, finally found Spike and Bumblebee. But they were in a dire situation.
The pair were suspended above a vat of acid and they were about to be dropped in, where they would dissolve and die. Daniel, Spike’s son, found them. He was the only one who could stop what might happen next.
Although Daniel was able to use his exosuit to shoot down the cover to the vat, Spike and Bumblebee had already been dropped.
So did my heart. I had seen Ironhide, Prowl, Ratchet, and worst of all, Optimus Prime die; was I going to see the same for Bumblebee?
I wanted to scream.
A moment later, we heard Spike’s voice. He was alive and standing atop the vat. With him were Jazz and Cliffjumper.
And so was Bumblebee.
He was alive. Somehow, Bumblebee had done the impossible: he had been through the gullet of Unicron and survived.
That was the moment that I wanted to burst into tears, but not for the reasons I had earlier. I was happy. Bumblebee had lived; he managed to tough it out and did what a lot of other Autobots had been unable to do. He lived. He survived. He was a survivor.
In the years after the movie, I took this fact to heart; if Bumblebee could survive Unicron, there was nothing out there that I couldn’t handle. If Bumblebee could do it, so could I. He might not have looked particularly tough, but he’s always had a cast iron streak of pluck in him, which has helped him get through a lot. You might knock him down, but Bumblebee is just going to get right back up, brush himself off and keep going. The little guy doesn’t quit.
Which is why he’s not only been my first crush, but my inspiration. If he can keep going, no matter the odds, then I can do no less.