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Nanosec (episode)

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This article is about an episode of Transformers Animated. For the supervillain the episode is named for, see Nanosec.
TFA Nanosec flee

Sure was nice of Sumdac to make a prototype suit that already had a supervillain look to it.

Bumblebee's self-proclaimed title as "fastest thing on wheels" is threatened by Nanosec, a super speedster crook on a deadly mission that could destroy all of Detroit.

German Title: "Die Turbodüsen" ("The Turbojets")
Japanese title: "Time for the Trap" (罠の時間 Wana no Jikan)


TFA Nanosec Bumblebee Nino Sexton

"Bumblebee, put your doll down." "It is an ACTION FIGURE, Prime!"

During a nighttime fireworks display, a small-time thief named Nino Sexton takes advantage of the distraction to pull a heist not far from Detroit's boardwalks. He eludes the easily bamboozled police drones, but makes the mistake of trying to steal the not-so-easily-bamboozled Bumblebee for a getaway car. Bumblebee toys with the crook for a bit, showing off his speed, but Bulkhead arrives and tells him to knock it off. As they argue, Sexton tries to leave, but Bulkhead stops him with his wrecking ball—which cracks apart the boardwalk, sending all three plunging down. The two 'bots hit the water while Sexton hangs on desperately to a shattered board. He is saved in the nick of time by Optimus Prime, who turns him in to the police.

Meanwhile, in Professor Sumdac's private lab, his attempt to construct a servo for Megatron fails, as Megatron knew it would. The Decepticon says that Destronium is necessary to build parts of sufficient quality, but Sumdac responds that the only available Destronium is a small amount synthesized on Earth.

TFA Nanosec Bumblebee turbo boosters

"Bumblebee, give me my jetpack back right now!

The next day, Prime reprimands Bulkhead and Bumblebee, then says that Bumblebee will spend the day working with Prowl and Bulkhead on using his head instead of his thrusters. This upsets Sari, who has been looking forward to sharing with 'Bee one of her dad's latest prototypes: a set of turbo boosters. Bumblebee's all too eager to get them attached, but Ratchet absolutely nixes the idea. Sari protests that her dad's equipment is perfectly safe.

Across town, a technician reports to Professor Sumdac that there are problems with the new turbo-blade cyber suit as the test subject hurtles helplessly around the test track. Sumdac resignedly asks for the design specs so he can work out the bugs. Once the suit is perfected, it will increase human speed and reaction time a thousandfold. Megatron insists that the Destronium take priority, but Sumdac notes that the available sample is too unstable; transporting it from across town would leave it useless—or worse, highly explosive—unless it could be delivered in under ten minutes. He notes that nothing is that fast, but Megatron eyes the display of the plans for the cyber suit.

Shortly, Nino Sexton is informed that someone has posted his bail, though the police drone has no info on who it was. Bemused, he walks outside, where a delivery drone hands him a package "from a friend." Nino opens it to find the cyber suit.

In traffic, Bumblebee refuses to slow down and blend in. He points out that a riderless motorcycle hardly blends in either, so Prowl generates a holographic driver, but Bumblebee still refuses to cooperate—until a traffic jam forces him to do so. When a group of police vehicles speed by, Bumblebee takes the excuse to put on his own police roof light and do some "blending".

TFA Nanosec Prowl awesome

Ninjas are AWESOME!

The police turn out to be responding to a sudden rash of thefts by a hyper-fast Nino Sexton. Just after one theft, a teller comments in shock that the money vanished in a nanosec. Nino overhears and decides he likes the name. He eludes the police easily, then encounters Bumblebee. This time, Nanosec gets away, and Bumblebee can only marvel at his speed. However, for all his speed, Nanosec finds his big bags of loot rather heavy, and he pauses to catch his breath—only to be confronted by Prowl. The crook soon escapes, but Bumblebee's had time to catch up. He's still not fast enough to overtake Nanosec before the speedster zooms through a railroad crossing with a train closing in fast. Losing his nerve at the last second, Bumblebee slams on the brakes but gets stuck on the tracks. Bulkhead manages to grab the train in time to save 'Bee from getting crushed and holds it long enough that his buddy can get out of the way.

As Nanosec rejoices in his escape, he is contacted by Megatron, who is using a strobing signal that can only be detected at ultra-high speeds. Megatron offers Nanosec a substantial reward—$50 million—for delivering the Destronium. As a downpayment, he provides an ATM code that delivers a large amount of cash out of Isaac Sumdac's private bank account. All he has to do is get the Destronium from the lab to Sumdac Tower within ten minutes.

At the Autobots' base, Bumblebee continues to try to beat his speed record, but to no avail. As he begs Ratchet to give him the turbo booster upgrade, Nanosec heists the Destronium from Sumdac Labs. Prime arrives to announce Nanosec's latest activity and location, and commands everyone to roll out to capture the villain. A dejected Bumblebee thinks it's impossible, but Sari holds up the Key and says there might be a way.

TFA Nanosec Bumblebee no control

Don't drink and drive, kids!

As Nanosec races into town, Prime stops him with a spread of negative-friction lubricant, but once he lassos the criminal out of the puddle, Nanosec's speed allows him to turn Prime's grappling lines against him. Prime calls for back-up, so Sari activates Bumblebee's newly installed boosters with the Key. Prime finally manages to catch Nanosec by his legs, but Bumblebee rockets into him, out of control, allowing the villain to escape. 'Bee and Sari nearly zoom off the edge of a half-built bridge, but Prime's line catches them. Even so, it's a struggle for the Autobot leader to hold them, so 'Bee throws it in reverse. This gets him away from the drop, but otherwise doesn't help much.


Better hope Hot Shot doesn't find this.

Down the road, Ratchet uses his magnets to catch Nanosec, then checks the container he was carrying. He quickly realizes the danger involved—if the Destronium detonates in its current state, it could wipe out half of Detroit. Then Bulkhead notices Nanosec, whose hood has come off, now has grey hair when he used to be a redhead. Just then, Bumblebee rockets by, still out of control and now in reverse, again knocking Nanosec free to resume his delivery. Ratchet suggests Bee switch to robot mode, which is a MUCH bigger help. Prime catches up and orders Ratchet to disable the boosters, but there's no time; Nanosec has to be caught and stopped NOW. Prime tells everyone to roll out—without any vehicle mode modifications, thank you. As they proceed, Bulkhead wonders if the Destronium turned Nanosec's hair white, but Prowl responds that loss of hair color in organics is a sign of aging. Realizing what's going on, Bumblebee activates his boosters (which are apparently under control now) and races after Nanosec, using his head AND his thrusters. Once he catches up to the slowing speedster, 'Bee easily zaps the Destronium out of his grasp and rolls off with it. He then taunts the criminal into pursuing him at top speed until Nanosec becomes literally too old for this stuff and collapses.

TFA Nanosec Bumblebee flight

And they say bees can't fly...

By this time, the Destronium is very near its flash point, and according to Ratchet, the only safe place to take it is the upper atmosphere. With a two-stage boost assist from Bulkhead and Prowl, Bumblebee manages to use his thrusters to take the Destronium high enough and chuck it away before it explodes. Ratchet and Prime then slow him down and cool him off during his reentry. As the media cover Nanosec's arrest and the averted disaster, Prime congratulates everyone on a job well done, and Prowl even offers to race Bumblebee back to the plant, but 'Bee says he and Sari will walk.


Featured characters

(Numbers indicate order of appearance.)

Autobots Decepticons Humans


"I'm kinda new to this planet, but I believe you're supposed to pay for those things before you run off with them."

Optimus Prime holding Nanosec after he robs the warehouse

"Couldn't I just ask your Autobot friends to help?"
"NO! not wish them to see me in this weakened state."

Megatron tells Isaac Sumdac the absolute truth, for once. Sort of.

Bumblebee: "Turbo boosters! Suh-weet!"
Optimus: "You're not actually thinking of hooking these things up to yourself, are you?"
Bumblebee: "Oh, of course not! I was gonna ask the doc-bot to do it for me."
Ratchet: "Have you got your processor up your exhaust port? These things are untested, incompatible—"
Sari: "And totally wicked fast!"

—Bumblebee gets a few mixed signals.

"I ain't nobody's errand boy...uuunless the price is right!"

Nanosec hustling Megatron

Prowl: "The point of this exercise is to blend into your environment."
Bumblebee: "Oh, right! 'Cause nothing says 'blend' like a motorcycle driving itself."
Prowl generates a hologram of a policeman driver for himself
Prowl: "Happy?"

—Houston, we have Mustache Man sighting.

"Word of advice: Super speed doesn't equal super strength."

Prowl tells it like it is.

"You know, there might be another way to get that turbo booster upgrade."
"But, Prime's orders—"
"Were to catch Nanosec. He didn't say HOW."

Sari plays the little devil on Bumblebee's shoulder.

"What is this stuff? Are you nuts?"
"Negative friction lubricant (transforms) and technically, I'm nuts, bolts, and armored plating."

-Optimus Prime schools Nanosec.

Bumblebee: "You ROCK!"
Sari: "No, YOU rock!"
Bumblebee: "No, YOU rock!"
Sari: "No, YOU rock!"
Bumblebee: "I said YOU rock!"
Sari: "I said YOU rock!"
Bumblebee: "YOU rock!"
Sari: "YOU rock!"

—Mercifully, the exchange ends here.

"Transform and roll out! (to Bumblebee) In your ORIGINAL vehicle mode!"

Optimus Prime

"How do you suppose this Nanosec fellow got hold of my experimental turbo suit?"
"I suspect it was an inside job."

—Delightfully layered-meaning dialog between Professor Sumdac and Megatron

"Race you back to the plant?"
"If it's all the same to you, I think we'll walk."

Prowl and Bumblebee


  • In the Japanese version, it was aired as the ninth episode.

Continuity errors

  • Prof. Sumdac seems woefully dim about his own creation, stating that nothing could be fast enough to bring the Destronium across town in time, right after talking about the turbo suit. However, as the suit has just been shown to have problems, perhaps Sumdac is instead exercising some sensible caution by not even considering using it.
  • Ironically, judging from the position of the train at the time Bumblebee stopped on the tracks, he would have made it if he'd kept going.
  • Comparing Megatron's directions to a map of the Detroit-Monroe area, he seems to recommend taking a primarily north-south route, which seems to be the shortest distance. However, Prime says Nanosec's taking I-94, the east-west highway, which would require a substantially longer route. Even given his super speed, why would Nanosec make it harder on himself to make the 10-minute deadline? (It's possible's route doesn't use highways, meaning more traffic lights, but the map's semi-fictionalized, so it's hard to tell. And why would Nanosec care about traffic lights anyway?)
  • Apparently, news spreads as fast as Nanosec can run. No one seems to be around to hear him say he likes the name after he hears the teller use the word, yet within a few hours, Prime and Sari somehow know his name as well. Maybe he quickly put up some P.R.?
  • Sumdac claims that the Destronium has to be delivered quickly, or it will become too unstable. Yet Ratchet says moving the substance at high speed is what makes it volatile. So it was a lose-lose situation from the beginning. Perhaps Megatron needs to run a few more self-diagnostics before he starts his galactic conquest gig again...
  • What would Megatron actually do with the destronium, even if he got it, without letting Sumdac know about it? He needs help to get his body back.

Animation errors

  • As Bumblebee is about to go over the closed bridge, just before he goes into reverse, the Key is stuck in his ignition...and also depicted hanging from its lanyard around Sari's neck.
  • When the police drone tells Nanosec to freeze, its caterpillar treads are still moving.
  • When the Autobots arrive after Bumblebee stopped Nanosec, Ratchet's hood is white instead of red.

Transformers references

  • Bumblebee's battle mask bears a striking similarity to the toy-face of the original Generation One Bumblebee toy.
  • Sumdac's new police drones, first seen (sort of) in Total Meltdown, have been adopted by the Detroit police department. They still need to work out some bugs.
  • Prowl can project a hologram of a police officer riding him...and the hologram has a mustache.
  • Although this may not be intentional, Sari finding a loophole in Optimus's orders is similar to Blackarachnia doing the same with Cheetor in the second episode of Beast Machines.

Real-world references

  • Going by the semi-fictional map Megatron provides, Sumdac Tower appears to be near the interchange of I-96 and State Highway 39, while the lab with the Destronium is somewhere near the suburb of Berlin, just east of I-75. For comparison, the robot plant shown in "Transform and Roll Out!" is on the lakeshore in Monroe, about six miles further southwest.


  • This is the first time Bumblebee uses his battle mask.
  • This is also the first time we see Bumblebee's rocket boosters. He loses them during atmospheric reentry, but he gets them back in the second season—just in time to have some fun with race cars.
  • In the previous week's episode, "The Thrill of the Hunt", Ratchet repaired his war wound—the exposed circuitry on the dorsal side of his left forearm—when he installed his EMP generator, regained from the bounty hunter Lockdown. Only a few shots in this episode provide a view of that part of his arm, and most of them show it as whole. However, the one good view available—after the Destronium theft, when Bumblebee is begging Ratchet to install the boosters—distinctly shows the war wound still present. It's possible he's left the generator unattached so he may continue to remember the circumstances of its loss "for those who can't," as he puts it.
  • In this episode, Bumblebee tries to be responsible, while Sari is the one who opts for breaking the rules. Wow. That's a role reversal from previous fictions.
  • Isaac Sumdac is still using Megatron's hand as a chair. For a fleshling, he's got brass.
  • Bumblebee ran Nanosec, already slowed enough to make them equal, into old age on purpose for no apparent reason. That is COLD.
  • So, why would a negative friction lubricant cause Nanosec to slow down? Wouldn't it make him keep going?
    • Try running on a frictionless surface and see how easy it is.
      • I think it's the fact that if he had already built up speed, he'd have simply fell, but still slid across it.
  • Apparently when Bumblebee has his mask on, his eyes are part of the mask.
TFA Bumblebee (Ready For Lift-Off)00:45

TFA Bumblebee (Ready For Lift-Off)

Pause when he says "Ready for lift-off"?

Thanks for helping me... pull myself together.

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