The Decepticons uncover the Crystal of Power in Peru, and the Autobots resurrect Skyfire to stop them.
- Japanese title: "Incaic Jewel"
- Russian Tv dub title (6th channel): "Схватка на вершине" ("Battle on the top")
While patrolling a refinery, Trailbreaker and Brawn spot Thundercracker and Starscream stealing steel. The Decepticons get away with the loot by collapsing the refinery behind them. The Autobots report back to Optimus Prime, who is puzzled about the Decepticons’ motives. The Autobots launch a Sky Spy to home in on any Decepticon activity, and the satellite picks up strange energy readings in the Peruvian Andes.
There, the Decepticons have followed an Incan legend to an ancient temple that rests on a shaft leading deep into the Earth’s core, capped by the Crystal of Power. With the metal acquired by Starscream, the Decepticons have fashioned a weapon frame to accommodate the crystal. Laserbeak spots the Sky Spy, and Megatron tests the weapon by blowing the satellite out of the sky. The metal, however, proves inadequate and melts with exposure to the raw energy unleashed from the Earth’s core. Starscream tries to shift blame to Thundercracker for the faulty metal, but Megatron blames them both and has them stay behind at the temple while he soars to a nearby mining town to find replacement metal.
The nearby Peruvian mining town is abuzz with the sudden show of power from the ancient temple. A reactionary elder proclaims that long-forgotten gods have come back to punish them, but her more level-headed granddaughter, Luisa, realizes that someone must have uncovered the fabled Crystal of Power.
In the Arctic, Sideswipe and Wheeljack are jackhammering through the ice to resurrect the fallen warrior Skyfire. The massive jet emerges from the ice and transforms into robot mode. Wheeljack immediately assigns him to fly back to Autobot headquarters to pick up Brawn and Windcharger before heading down to the Andes mountains.
In short order, Skyfire is in the Andes, closing in on the Decepticons. Windcharger and Brawn skydive from the jet, tangling with Soundwave and Reflector while Skyfire goes to investigate the strange energy readings from the Incan temple. While the smaller Autobots are able to hold their own against Megatron’s lieutenants, the Decepticon leader proves too powerful for them and they scatter. Windcharger desperately calls for Skyfire to return while Brawn bites off more than he can chew in the form of an angered Megatron.
Skyfire zooms in to the rescue and gracefully airlifts Brawn and Windcharger from the thick of Decepticon danger. Skyfire quickly returns to the Ark to pick up some reinforcements and streaks back to Peru. He deposits the Autobots near the mining town to take care of Megatron while he goes to investigate the Incan temple.
The Autobots stop Megatron, Reflector and Soundwave mid-raid, with Brawn having the ball-bearings enough to swipe Megatron’s arm cannon and blast the Decepticon leader with his own weapon! Laserbeak steals back the weapon and Megatron swears vengeance. He has gathered a metal strong enough for the Crystal, and requests that Skywarp come to retrieve it, adding further insult to Thundercracker and Starscream who are left guarding the temple.
A stray blast during the battle nearly drops an electrical tower on top of Luisa, but she is saved by Spike and Bumblebee. Luisa quickly explains that these "evil creatures" have stolen the Crystal of Power. She leads Bumblebee and Spike to a secret entrance in the temple. Soundwave detects their presence, and dispatches Ravage to follow them.
Meanwhile, Thundercracker spots Skyfire skulking about the temple. The Decepticon warrior is torn; if he blasts Skyfire, Starscream is likely to take all the credit. Conversely, if he lets Skyfire destroy the Crystal-based weapon, perhaps Starscream can take the blame. Starscream overhears Thundercracker plotting, and blasts Skyfire. He then blackmails Thundercracker to do his bidding, lest Starscream reveal to their leader just how uncertain Thundercracker’s loyalties can be.
The Decepticons load up their stolen steel with Skywarp's help and depart. To cover their exit, Megatron blasts a nearby mountain, creating a deadly rockfall that threatens the mining town.
The Autobots use their firepower to reduce the falling boulders to pebbles, saving the village. Meanwhile, Megatron returns to the temple, where he successfully tests a new weapon frame that can handle the power of the crystal. Bumblebee, Spike and Luisa surreptitiously arrive in the temple, spotting the inert form of Skyfire. Spike starts repairing the fallen warrior, just as Ravage pounces. Bumblebee tries holding off the Decepticon jaguar while Spike works as fast as he can.
The rest of the Autobots arrive at the temple, but Megatron pins them down with devastating firepower from his weapon frame cannon. The Autobots are able to outflank Megatron, and the tide of battle is turned by Skyfire, freshly repaired by Spike. Skyfire strafes the weapons frame, destroying it and unleashing the power of the mountain. The Decepticons retreat, and Thundercracker takes fleeting pleasure in seeing Megatron and Starscream fail.
That night, Wheeljack caps the fire stream with a new invention that can contain the power that the crystal formerly held in check. The Autobots celebrate their victory while Bumblebee and Spike drive Luisa back to the mining town, where she promises to introduce Bumblebee to her brother’s convertible, Juanita.
Original airdate: December 22, 1984
Production number: #700-06
Written by: Douglas Booth
(Numbers indicate order of appearance.)
"Looks more like stealing to me… and I'm talking steel!"
- —Brawn, confronting Starscream and Thundercracker with a horrible pun.
"Awww, hexagonal nuts!"
- —Trailbreaker, after he and Brawn totally fail to stop the Decepticons.
Starscream: "Don't blame me. Thundercracker swiped defective steel, not I. It was his fault."
Thundercracker: "You lie, Starscream."
Megatron: "SILENCE YOU FOOL!" (Punches Thundercracker right off the top of the pyramid)
- —Starscream, showing that Seeker camaraderie once again. Remarkably, Megs doesn't even doubt Starscream's word. Is he really that stupid?
"It's cold enough to freeze the ailerons off a titanium moosebot!"
"Wrong again, you dipstick tapedeck!"
- —Brawn to Soundwave after the Decepticon declares that Skyfire is afraid to fight.
"Prepare for oblivion!"
- —Soundwave to Brawn while the Autobot's back is turned.
"Now that was a kick!"
- —Brawn, after blasting Megatron with his own cannon.
"Have a good time playing crystal-nurse, Screamer!"
- —Skywarp, being a jerk
"I'm too darn big to sneak around like this."
- —SkyFire, trying to be a spy
"Fate, schmate. It isn’t over yet, Megabum!"
- —Trailbreaker, after Megatron prematurely gloats of imminent victory.
"This is what separates the Autobots from the robot chickens!"
"Ain’t no one calling me a robot chicken!"
- —Ironhide and Brawn, referencing Robot Chicken years before the Adult Swim show.
"Kiss your magnofusers goodbye, Autobots!"
"You'll pay for this, Skyfire!"
"Guess again, Megatron!"
- —Megatron's focus on Skyfire allows Optimus Prime to throw him from the temple.
For our friends, a little going away present.
"What’s the matter, fearless leader? You and Starscream look real geeky!"
- —Thundercracker being a jerk.
"Does he have to make that awful thunder noise? I've got a headache!"
- —Starscream proving that he actually has something in his head.
Animation and/or technical glitches
- At the start of the episode, when Brawn confronts Starscream and Thundercracker, the Decepticons' colours are switched.
- When Skyfire strafes the crystal-powered weapon, he momentarily has Skywarp's colors.
- The Rhino DVD version of this episode uses a number of erroneous takes as the basis of its remastered animation. As a result, the DVD introduces several coloring errors that were not present in the broadcast version. For example, Trailbreaker is colored a solid red (like Ironhide and Sideswipe) in his introductory shot. When Skywarp mocks Starscream for having to guard the Crystal, he is colored like Thundercracker. When Starscream and Thundercracker carry Skyfire’s inert form, the Autobot jet has Skywarp’s colors, and as Megatron addresses Starscream, the latter has Thundercracker's colors. The broadcast version has correct colors for all these shots. (See illustration)
- When Starscream presents the weapon to Megatron and puts the crystal in, his Decepticon insignia is red. Huh?
- When Megatron follows Starscream and Thundercracker out of the pyramid after leaving Skyfire in, his Decepticon emblem disappears for a moment.
- In the battlefield scene between Soundwave and Reflector versus the other Autobots, the Autobot lasers are coloured purple.
- When Skyfire swoops over Soundwave and Reflector and destroys their stone bunkers, both the lasers hitting their targets and the explosions are missing, so it appears the walls just fall apart.
- When Skyfire is about to destroy the cannon, it already appears to be melted to slag.
- The Incans apparently built temples with steps large enough for Transformers to use.
- Skyfire was left for dead and mourned in his previous, debut appearance in "Fire in the Sky". Why do the Autobots return to his resting spot to dig him up out of the ice for a quick ride?
- In order to do the above, the Autobots drive from the United States to the North Pole to dig up Skyfire so he can fly them down to South America. Think about that for a minute.
- Luisa evidently can teleport.
- If the Autobots can fly, why does Brawn need rescuing when he's running from Megatron? Why doesn't he just fly away?
- This episode references "Fire in the Sky", the previous (and first) episode that Skyfire appeared in.
- This is the only episode to play on Thundercracker's uncertain loyalties, a trait called out in his original bio. It's also one of the few episodes in which he displays his sonic powers, and even then, only when Starscream whines about the "awful thunder noise" he's making as they fly away. His sonic powers are also mentioned in "Heavy Metal War", where Megatron uses them after gathering all the Decepticons' powers.
- The Transformers visit Peru, an ancient Incan temple, and a mining village where everyone speaks heavily accented English.
- The title of this episode may be a reference to the Grateful Dead song of the same name.
- The crystal is apparently located in the sole Mayan temple in Peru.
- Starscream is depicted having a dozen rockets within hidden chest compartments. Despite only appearing in this episode, the feature was immortalized in toy form for Starscream's Robot Masters incarnation through clip-on accessories, and again as part of his Masterpiece figure, this time actually incorporated into the figure.
- Megatron can apparently pick off the Sky Spy from the temple to the atmosphere but can't shoot Optimus Prime with his weapon from 30 feet in front of him.
- Soundwave conceals a tricorder-like scanning device in his left wrist.
- Brawn has a retractable claw that can extend in his car mode.
- Brawn humiliates Megatron with his own fusion cannon. Ironically, Brawn gets killed with the same weapon later.
- Brawn also gets shot in the chest by the fusion cannon in this episode and gets up without a hint of damage.
- The episode marks perhaps the only time when Megatron is shot by his own gun....
- Starscream calls Thundercracker a traitor. Isn't that the pot calling the kettle black.
- Luisa's name is never spoken in the episode.
- Starscream is actually referred to by the nickname "Screamer" in this episode, something which also occurs in "B.O.T.".
- The chapter stops for this episode on the Rhino DVD include: Opening / Stolen Steel / It's Skyfire / To The Mining Town / Visiting Decepticon / Invention Works
- This is the second episode to feature the following three elements: Skyfire, green crystals,and shafts of said crystals leading to the Earth's core. The first being "Fire in the Sky".
- For seemingly no reason at one point in the episode, Optimus randomly starts patting Skyfire on the nosecone. Good doggy...jet...thing.
- At one point Spike says that he has no idea if he can repair Skyfire, since he's unfamiliar with Cybertronian circuitry. And yet, he repairs him...That boy must either know more than he thought, or he commands the power of deus ex machina.
- During the final battle at the temple, as Skyfire makes a strafing run at Soundwave and one of the Reflector trio, the Reflector bot can be seen holding a Shockwave gun. Either Shockwave has come to Earth for the duration of this episode and can now mass shift or Reflector has been shopping at RadioShack.
- When mumbling that Skyfire would be a more valuable Decepticon than both Starscream and Thundercracker, he seems to be unaware that Starscream dropped Skyfire with one shot.