Some things in the past happen.
Optimus and a team of Autobots, along with the Autobots of the past, take a "Time Bridge" to Earth of the past, way before the Autobots saved the planet, and the rest of the Universe from the black hole: the Unicron Singularity, but this time, in the past; though Vector Prime of nearly the beginning of time and the past warns that the evacuation is only delaying the inevitable; the black hole will expand beyond Cybertron and eventually consume everything. He says he must recover the galactic map that was stolen from him by Megatron, and Optimus assigns Jetfire with both Hot Shot and Overhaul of the past to accompany him while he and Scattorshot of the past search Earth for the missing Landmine of the past.
Meanwhile, on Earth, Coby of the past rushes to the garage of Mr. Standen of the past, looking for tools to help repair "that giant robot". Standen is there, and Coby says he's going to "mine for gold". Standen, amused, lets Coby borrow the tools, plus his ATV. Coby then uses the ATV to help pull Landmine out of the impact crater he left when he fell to Earth. Introductions are made, and Landmine meets Coby's brother of the past, Bud, and their friend of the past, Lori. Landmine sits down so Coby can do some repair-work...
Elsewhere on Earth, Optimus tells Scattorshot of the past to scan an Earth vehicle, before the humans of the past learn their secret. He spies a billboard with what might be a war-movie advertisement on it and scans the vehicle from that: a half-track tank. Optimus is dubious, thinking that scanning this kind of tank is Decepticon property, but Scattorshot gets suitably lippy and the two drive off.
In outer space, Megatron of the past, along with Starscream of the past, arrive in an asteroid field, guided by the stolen map to the location of one of the past Cyber Planet Keys. Megatron breaks open the largest asteroid, only to find nothing. He's about to crush the map in anger, but Starscream interrupts, reminding him that the map itself is ancient, and that the universe is constantly moving. Megatron muses that some adjustments need to be made, but then the Autobot strike team arrives. Vector Prime and Jetfire tackle Starscream while Overhaul and Hot Shot pile on Megatron. They put up a good fight, but even two-to-one, the Autobots are unable to take down the Decepticons.
Back on Earth, Coby finishes up repairs on Landmine's arm, while Lori and Bud polish him up. Landmine asks if everyone on Earth is as kind as these three, and Lori admits probably not, but most. Elsewhere, a forest ranger and a crowd of people look over the giant footprints Landmine left behind, and begin searching the woods. The kids realize that people are now looking for them, and realize they need to hide Landmine quick...
Elsewhere, Optimus (in truck mode) overhears a pair of humans discussing how a "bigfoot" was found nearby (news travels fast, huh?). He thanks the two humans for the information and drives off.
Elsewhere, a military jet is scanned by a Decepticon of the past, Thundercracker. He spies Landmine, being chased by rangers, and launches a barrage of missiles at the Autobot. The resulting fires send the rangers fleeing, but Optimus Prime arrives on the scene! Thundercracker lands and fires on Optimus, but can't take the heat, so he leaps to the air. Optimus follows in his flying form, and the two play cat-and-mouse in a nearby canyon until Thundercracker warps away, laughing.
The kids realize that there are people trapped in the fire. Prime sucks up water from the lake, and converts to super mode, using his cannons to spray water into the air that puts out the fire. The human think it's simply raining, and walk away happy.
The other Autobots arrive on the scene, and more introductions are made. Vector Prime summons the Recon Mini-Con Team of the past, who scan their alternate modes from Coby's spilled books and magazines. The fate of the universe is discussed, plus the Cybertronian civilians in hiding on Earth, and their need for a base of operations.
Jolt and Vector Prime realize that the image on Lori's rock-band t-shirt is that of the Omega Lock, one of the keys to stopping the black hole. Vector muses that if that pattern is appearing on Earth, then maybe one of the Cyber Planet Keys is here...
And so our story ends...here.
Original airdate: ???
Written by: ???
(Numbers indicate order of appearance.)
"Just one question... are you standard or metric?"
"You know, I never really thought about it."
- —Coby & Landmine
"A tank?! Are you trying to draw attention to us?!"
"As opposed to a firetruck with giant cannons? Yeah, 'cuz that blends in so well with the scenery. Where'd you go? Oh, there you are, I didn't see you for a second! Huh. A tank is perfect! No parking tickets, they'll all get out of my way, and I can get up to sixty miles per hour on rough terrain!"
"Yes... but a fire truck is bigger."
- —Optimus and Scattorshot discuss their alternate modes' disguise value
"Bigfoot in platform shoes?"
- —Random witness to the footprints Landmine left behind
"I appreciate the information. It's been real, gentlemen. Have a nice day!"
- —Optimus Prime
"How can we help, too? If the Earth is in danger...?"
"Not if, when!"
- —Lori & Scattorshot
Jolt: Um, where are we, anyway?
Lori: This is Earth.
Jolt: Ooh-hoo-hoo! Earth!
Coby: You know it?
Jolt: Never heard of it.
Animation and/or technical glitches
- When Landmine is flexing his recently-repaired hand, the support strut for his right arm's shovel-half is actually phasing through the shovel.
- A running error throughout these early episodes (well, early-continuity) is that characters have blatant Earth-alternate-mode kibble on them before they scan an Earth alternate mode. Scattorshot and the Mini-Cons scan theirs this episode... and Landmine won't get his for quite a few more (in continuity, of course).
- Several land-based Autobots fly under their own power in robot mode in Earth's atmosphere, which really isn't something they repeat often.
- Optimus uses the old catchphrase "robots in disguise" when telling Scattorshot to hurry up and scan an alternate mode.
- The military jet scanned by Thundercracker is referred to as "Oceanic Flight 815", after the doomed airliner from the TV series Lost.
- Thundercracker hoots "Time to git 'r' done!", the catchphrase of popular hick-comedian Larry The Cable Guy.
- This is a "lost" episode, created to fill the full run of 52 episodes, due to the first two episodes of the Galaxy Force series being mooshed into a single one ("Fallen") for the Cybertron run, for a more exciting opener. It's nothing more than a straight dub of the second Galaxy Force episode, so several of its scenes were already seen by viewers in "Fallen."
- Nobody gets improsoned.