Origin of the term
Exactly how the term came to be so widely accepted is unknown - it was never used in the cartoon or the comics, and yet even when the fandom was young it was the term of choice to describe the Decepticons jets. One piece of evidence for its use during the time of the original series was a JCPenney catalogue, which referred to a jet as a "Seeker". In the original Marvel Comics run of the Transformers comic book, however, a reference is made in issue #17 to a group of Decepticon jets on Cybertron as "Hunter-Seekers", but it is worth mentioning that these Cybertronian jets bore little resemblance to the pre-Earth alternate forms of the Decepticons jets in the Sunbow television show and that they were never officially referred to by this designation in the original run of the comic or its immediate successor, Generation 2.
The term Seeker received official recognition from Hasbro in 2006 when it was mentioned in the tech spec for Transformers: Titanium Thundercracker.
Transformers: Generation 1
They are less commonly referred to as Skyraiders (on Generation 2 European packaging and in U.K. Generation 2 Marvel Comics), Jetron (in Japan), and simply as the "Decepticon Planes." They are led by Starscream. On Cybertron, the Seekers transformed into an approximately pyramidal shaped aircraft/spacecraft (sometimes referred to as Tetrajets in this form). Judging from both the cartoon and the movie, the Seekers were a large force and were basically the Transformer equivalent of an airforce. However, originally only six were named and brought to Earth; on Earth, they transformed into various jet aircraft, most notably an F-15. The term 'Seekers' essentially refers to these six members.
The original Seekers from Generation 1 were Starscream, Thundercracker, Skywarp, Thrust, Ramjet and Dirge. The latter three were given the name of 'Coneheads' by fans because the character models from Generation 1(G1) had a unique shaped head, so that the jet fighter nose cone pointed straight up instead of back. (In addition, the body of the Coneheads' cartoon models were more accurate when compared to the toy, with shorter, cowled thighs which were less articulate.)
In recent years, a Japanese store named E-hobby released a new Seeker toy called Sunstorm, in reference to a scene in the 1984 cartoon's pilot which featured an orangish yellow jet. Sunstorm was also featured in the Transformers comic series by Dreamwave Productions.
Unidentified Terran Seekers
Another source of additional Seekers was the unnamed Decepticons used in the earliest portions of the first season of the cartoon. In order to give them a generic appearance, most were colored a periwinkle-like color (presumably a middle ground between the blue used on Thundercracker and the lavender used on Skywarp) and black, with white and red wing stripes (similar to Starscream and Thundercracker), and a silver chest (also shared by Thundercracker and Skywarp). In the original 3-part pilot, an unknown number of these Decepticons were drawn in order to balance the uneven number of Autobots (18 released as toys, plus at least 1 extra) and Decepticons (10 released as toys, minus Buzzsaw and Frenzy, plus the 3 Reflector robots) in fight scenes, similar to the large number of G.I. Joe Grunts and unnamed Cobras used in the first 2 G.I. Joe mini-series. These grunt characters were made into PVC figurines called simply "Decepticons" or "Decepticon Air Warriors". No toy based on the original 1984-85 Decepticon Planes, nor any later Starscream-based transforming toys has been produced to date.
It is commonly believed that these extra jets were destroyed in a mine explosion caused by a bomb placed by Sparkplug and Bumblebee at the end of "More Than Meets The Eye", part 2. However, with the gross color errors in the original series, they may still exist as background Decepticons.
Additionally, in the episode "Divide and Conquer", three unique Seekers with bright coloring resided on Cybertron with bodies appearing mostly green, blue and yellow appear in the episode, appropriately called "Rainmakers" by Bluestreak. A toy redeco of Classics Starscream, named Acid Storm,is a camo green with yellow highlights in robot mode. He is said to be part of the Rainmakers, and could be the green one seen in "Divide and Conquer". Sunstorm is not the second of the "Rainmakers" as he is orange and the "rainmaker" is a lemon yellow.
Transformers: Generation 2
|Alternate Modes||Formula one racing car (never seen)|
Slipstream was the name of one of the Mini-Cons featured in the Transformers Armada PS2 game. She is a member of the Gold Mini-Con Team. Once combined to the player's character, she becomes a glider pack that allowed for flight. She looks like the Mini-Con Swindle.
|Alternate Modes||Jet/Throwing Star|
In Transformers: Cybertron, a large force of Decepticons freed by Starscream were ordered to turn into Seeker Ships to scour the Earth. These ships were oval shaped, and nothing more than an amalgam for genetic robots and had nothing to do with any prior "Seeker" units.
In Transformers Animated the Seekers are clones created by Starscream using fragments of his Allspark shard to give them life. Each clone personifies an aspect of his personality: cowardice (Skywarp), arrogance (Thundercracker), sycophancy (Sunstorm) and pathological dishonesty (which unofficially resembles Ramjet). In addition, a female clone (Slipstream), who wishes not to explain her origin, is among the clone army. While Slipstream remained on Earth, Skywarp and Thundercracker ended up drifting in space. Both Sunstorm and Ramjet were captured and brought to Cybertron. All the clones are voiced by Tom Kenny, except Slipstream, since she is a female clone, her voice was provided by the voice-actress Tara Strong.
- Main article: Skywarp#Transformers Animated
- Main article: Thundercracker#Transformers Animated
- Main article: Sunstorm (Transformers)#Transformers Animated
- Main article: Ramjet (Transformers)#Transformers Animated
|Sub-group(s)||Starscream Clones, Female Transformers|
|Function||Air Sub-Commander (2nd Class)|
|Motto||"If there's anyone I hate, It's Starscream."|
|Alternate Modes||Futuristic Harrier jet|
|Japanese voice actor||Atsuko Tanaka|
|Japanese voice actor||Tara Strong|
In the Transformers Animated series, Slipstream is the name that was given to the female Starscream clone. Like the rest of the clones, Slipstream embodies a part of the original's personality, though what part that is has never been elaborated upon. In spite of being created by Starscream, Slipstream has zero respect towards him and is as vindictive in personality.
Slipstream first appeared in "A Bridge Too Close" 2-parter, having just been brought online by a piece of Starscream's Allspark fragment. Blunt and scathing, she was quick to point out to her clueless "parent" how the other Starscream Clones represented their creator's egotism, cowardice, sycophancy and deceit. When asked which part of Starscream she represented, Slipstream replied "don't ask." Though she joined Starscream in his attack on Megatron, she incited him at every turn, questioning his battle strategies, and citing his failures at destroying Megatron. When Starscream was beheaded by a Headmaster unit, Slipstream was first of the remaining clones to instantly side with Megatron, telling Starscream "Any leader has to be an improvement over you." Slipstream and the clones then participated in the fight against Omega Supreme. Although Slipstream's strategy to aim for the giant Autobot's legs was partially successful, in the end she and the other Decepticons were no match for his firepower.
Unlike her clone brothers, Slipstream went into hiding until she briefly returned in "Endgame Part 1". As Optimus Prime tested his new jet pack, Slipstream mistook him for Starscream and attacked him. But after shooting him down, Slipstream realized her mistake and left the scene as one of the nine active Decepticons on Earth still on the loose. The others are Soundwave, Waspinator, Blackarachnia, Laserbeak, Ratbat and the Constructicons.
Prior to the creation of these clones, Starscream created two decoy clones when Megatron placed a bounty on his head in the episode "A Fistful of Energon". The first clone, an exact duplicate of Starscream (but with light purple colors) named Clone #3370318, displayed his cowardly personality and was captured by Lockdown. The second clone named Clone #2716057, who had similar colors to that of Sunstorm, attempted to plot a scheme with the Autobots before being locked in stasis cuffs by them. Both clones were brought into an abandoned warehouse where the Autobots and the Decepticons were about to battle each other until they realized that the clones were rigged with explosive devices. As the Decepticons fled, Prowl successfully disposed of the clones by launching them in the sky with his first Samurai armor.
According to Derrick J. Wyatt, there were also two Starscream clones that had color homages to Dirge (to embody Starscream's greed - only appeared as a recolor of Activators-class Starscream in cyan and yellow shades) and Thrust. While Dirge's was used for a toy, Thrust's has yet to be shown.
Transformers film series
'Revenge of the Fallen Seeker
|Alternate Modes||F/A-18F Super Hornet|
|Series||Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen|
There are two types of Seekers in the movie continuity; one is closer to the G1 depiction and the other having an origin that ties with the very first Transformers.
Reign of Starscream
In Reign of Starscream, Starscream is described as a 'Seeker'. The writers would later clarify that these Seekers refer to an elite unit (akin to commandos or special ops) under the command of Starscream. Like G1; most of them share the same body type. Among them; Starscream, Thundercracker, Ramjet and Skywarp. Dreadwing was apparently not considered good enough to be a part of Starscream's team and this is part of the reason for Dreadwing's betrayal shortly after Starscream's return from Earth.
Revenge of the Fallen
In Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, the Seekers are an ancient group of Transformers with the ability to leave Cybertron, teleporting to new locations to find stars which could be used to power the Allspark. Among these Seekers is the elderly Jetfire, a Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird and originally a Decepticon who, tired of destruction, later chose to side with the Autobots. It is unrevealed what the fate was of the other seekers, however, an unspecified number are confirmed as being still on Earth. Wheelie recognizes the alternate mode of several and is able to provide the locations of those within the US. Jetfire, in stasis in the Smithsonian Institution, is the closest and thus the one that is chosen to be investigated. Ransack, an Albatros D.III biplane is also one of these ancient Seekers. Others include a Ford Model T, a Consolidated B-24 Liberator, Lockheed F-104 Starfighter, and a NYC Hudson locomotive. During the course of the movie, Sam's group tracks down Jetfire who has defected from the Decepticons and has become a "mercenary doom-bringer." Jetfire allies himself with Sam and his group and aids them in their search for the Matrix of Leadership. Jetfire later takes part in the final battle, killing Mixmaster and Scorponok before he sacrifices himself to give Optimus his parts and the power he needs to defeat and kill the Fallen. Ransack appears in the movie novelazation where he confronts Jetfire and is killed by Jetfire stepping on and crushing him.
Much like the "Energon" Seeker, this version is a single character. He is a black and purple Decepticon jet who looks like Skywarp. Seeker is among the playable characters in the 2009 Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen video game by Activision.
|Alternate Modes||Cybertronian Jet Fighter|
|Series||Transformers: War for Cybertron|
|Japanese voice actor||Jessica Straus|
The Seekers appear in Transformers: War for Cybertron. The main Seekers are Starscream, Thundercracker, and Skywarp. Slipstream appears as an unlockable character, alongside Arcee. The Seekers appear in the novel Exodus. The Seeker Starscream appears in Transformers: Prime.
In Shattered Glass mirror universe the Seekers are a trio of evil Autobot cars rather than Decepticon Jets.
- ↑ http://www.transformersontheshelf.com/sitebuilder/images/JC1984-2-782x1144.jpg
- ↑ http://www.cliffbee.com/reviews/mb2.php
- ↑ Now that I've got your attention...; Derrick J. Wyatt: "Right now none of the clones have individual names, mostly because they are just fragments of the original Starscream's personality. There are no plans to change that for the time being. The color schemes are obviously homages to all the original seekers, so in some ways I do think of them by their original G1 names. I did Thrust and Dirge colors too, but we didn't end up using them in the show. Those colors are sort of the basis for the Activator figure."
- ↑ Boltax Blog - Slipstream
- ↑ Jim Sorenson & Bill Forster (August 15, 2009). Transformers Animated: The Allspark Almanac. Idea & Design Works Llc. p. 83.. ISBN 978-1600104879.
- ↑ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iqUnSuhQ0Ok
- ↑ TRANSFORMERS ANIMATED ACTIVATORS - DIRGE
- ↑ http://www.tfw2005.com/transformers-news/video-games-17/official-images-from-transformers-revenge-of-the-fallen-game-167565/