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Sparkplug (Armada)

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The name or term Sparkplug refers to more than one character or idea. For a list of other meanings, see Sparkplug (disambiguation).
Sparkplug is a Mini-Con from the Armada section of the Unicron Trilogy continuity family.
Sparkplug-AR-DVD

HERE I COME TO SAVE THE DAAAAY!

Sparkplug is a good-natured, energetic young Mini-Con who through the fates of war has become partnered with Optimus Prime, leader of the Autobots. Through this and his heroic actions, he's become something of a leader to his fellow Mini-Cons. He is also one of the few Mini-Cons to advocate siding with the Autobots. While most Mini-Cons view the differences between the Autobots and the Decepticons with apathy at best, Sparkplug is firmly aware of what those differences mean to Mini-Cons. He's seen the way Megatron treats Leader-1 compared to the way Optimus Prime treats him. Given the choice, Sparkplug gladly prefers the Autobots.


Japanese name: Prime
Polish name: Liderus
Ukrainian name: Stepselyu (Штепселю, "Plug")


Fiction

Armada

Cartoon continuity

Soon after arriving on Earth, both the Autobots and Decepticons detected a Mini-Con signal located in the Grand Canyon. The Autobots were at a considerable disadvantage during the inevitable confrontation due to the Decepticon strength in numbers and the fact they had to protect their human passengers. But with the help of the kids, Optimus Prime managed to find the Mini-Con panel, whose occupant turned out to be Sparkplug, Optimus Prime's old Mini-Con ally and friend. Together, they Powerlinxed, activating Optimus's powerful Maximum Blast, which sent the Decepticons into retreat. Comrade

Dreamwave comics continuity

Having miraculously avoided capture by Cyclonus and Demolishor Armada #1, Sparkplug was instrumental in helping the Air Defense Mini-Con Team free his Mini-Con brethren from their initial imprisonment by the Decepticons (by getting strapped to a rocket pack by Runway and drawing fire from the laser-based security system). Armada #2 After the escape ship broke up and crashed on Earth, he was with High Wire, Grindor, and Sureshock when Rad accidentally reactivated the Mini-Cons. Armada #3

Later, he convinced the Space Mini-Con Team to help rescue Rad, who was himself strapped in a space mine in a mine field surrounding the Mini-Con moon base. Armada #10

In the Arctic soon after, when one of the escape pods from the Moon Base had been tracked there, he powerlinxed with Optimus Prime, without holding back power, in order to stop Cyclonus, who'd been driven mad by the Destruction Mini-Con Team because they were overloading him with their power). Optimus then confronted Sparkplug, asking why he'd held power back even though the two trusted each other. Sparkplug explained the lore about their power and that it could save or destroy the universe, only to discover Optimus had mysteriously vanished. Armada #13

Sparkplug accompanied the dimension-traveler, Over-Run, and Comettor in Over-Run's travel pod to find Optimus (who had been sent to a Cybertron about to be eaten by Unicron), and was upgraded along with Optimus by the Mini-Con Matrix. Worlds Collide He was last seen standing with Optimus after the Chaos Bringer had been dealt a crippling blow by the Mini-Con Matrix. The End

Transformers Playstation 2 Game

He is Optimus Prime's Mini-Con partner. You can run him over!

Timelines

With the Unicron Singularity forcing the evacuation of Cybertron, Sparkplug and a number of Autobot leaders were summoned to the Iron Hope, where Ultra Magnus dispatched them across the galaxy to locate the lost Autobot colony worlds. Sparkplug was given command of the Valiant and sent to the Betelgeuse region. Force of Habit

Toys

Armada

  • Optimus Prime with Sparkplug (Super, 2002/2003)
Japanese ID Number: MC-01
Sparkplug transforms into a Lamborghini Diablo sports car. His robot mode bears a passing resemblance to the Generation One Autobot Bumblebee's cartoon model. He was only available with his larger partner Optimus Prime. The Takara release made a minor change to Sparkplug's deco, giving him medium-gray windows rather than the dark purple of the Hasbro version.
This mold was redecoed to make Atlas and Drop-Test.
  • Prime Super Mode (Mini-Con, 2003)
The August 2003 issue of TV-kun magazine in Japan included a special promotional "powered up" redeco of the Sparkplug toy in green. Also included was a little cardboard roadway and punch-out "targets" of various Decepticons for him to knock over.
According to the brief Transformers section of the magazine, Sparkplug takes on this coloration when the other Mini-Cons give him their strength. When Powerlinxed to Super Optimus Prime in this mode, he causes Prime's cannon to fire a powerful energy blast that takes the shape of Sparkplug's robot mode.
  • Powerlinx Optimus Prime with Corona Sparkplug (Super, 2003)
For the "Powerlinx" redeco of Optimus Prime, the original Sparkplug was retooled into a Cybertronian sports car with roof-lights and given a gold-chrome finish. (This finish seems to be a lot more durable than the chrome found on the Transmetal toys, being very resistant to flaking.) It is the only part of the set that was retooled, possibly because the yellow parts of Sparkplug are on their own mold tree (i.e., there are no other yellow-plastic parts to Super Optimus Prime), meaning an easy change to make.
This mold was used to make Chrome, Synapse and Road Rebel.
  • Battle for the Matrix (Multi-pack, 2003)
Released on "Black Friday" (the day after Thanksgiving), this K-Mart store exclusive bundled together Super Optimus Prime, Sparkplug, Jetfire, Comettor, the Adventure Mini-Con Team and (oddly enough) Longarm. This release of Sparkplug is identical to the original; out of the entire set, only Optimus received a deco change.
Optimus Prime with Sparkplug

Energon

  • Optimus Prime and Overload with Corona Sparkplug and Rollout (Multi-pack, 2004)
Part of a very large CostCo exclusive set, this release of Corona Sparkplug is near-identical to the original release, despite the extensive color changes made to Optimus.


Notes

  • Sparkplug's robot mode design appears to be an homage to G1 Bumblebee's cartoon model, with a similar head, "pipe" biceps, hood-feet and roof-chest. Well, and being yellow. His own cartoon model kind of downplays the similarity of the noggin. The Dreamwave comic changed his head design practically every issue, with some being more Bumblebee-esque than others. Some people think he looks like Sunstreaker due to his exotic car mode and his roof chest.
  • Due to bad American dubbing of Armada, Sparkplug has been called Leader-1 several times through the course of the series. In fact, the first episode he appeared in, EVERYONE was calling him Leader-1. Talk about an identity crisis.
  • It was noted that in the episode "Decisive Battle" Sparkplug had spoken to protect Optimus from Megatron, and had ever since to be the only episode where he spoke in. Boy what a mouth full!

External Links

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