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The Burden Hardest to Bear

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Matrix burden 2

You found me beautiful, once.

Overwhelmed by the burdens of leadership, Rodimus Prime doesn't care too much when the Decepticons steal the Matrix of Leadership away from him.

Japanese title: "The Mission Way Too Heavy"

Detailed synopsisEdit

At dawn, the people of Japan are awakening to do their daily tasks: fishing, going to shrines, and sword practice. Then, the Decepticons show up to cause random trouble.

Devastator begins harassing a few fishermen, but is chased off by Broadside. Astrotrain tries to ram a train head on (real smart) only to have the Aerialbots drive him away. Bruticus and Defensor fight it out, when Cyclonus and the Sweeps arrive, but are driven off by Rodimus, Kup, and Sky Lynx. However, instead of thanking the Autobots for saving many lives, the government of Japan is very upset, saying that the Autobots frightened people and ruined business (thankless bipeds). When Marissa Faireborn arrives and brings more problems to Rodimus, the Autobot leader loses patience, transforms, and drives off. Kup explains that Rodimus is merely strained under the burden of command, much like Optimus Prime was in his early days as leader, and Marissa decides to follow him, to let him have someone to talk to.

Matrix burden 1

Galvatron takes the brown acid.

Meeting up on the highway, however, the two are attacked by Wildrider and Dead End, who knock Marissa into a lake and force Rodimus off a cliff. When they inspect Rodimus, they find the Matrix. Realizing that Galvatron will be really happy, they steal it and return to Chaar. In his throne room, Galvatron inserts the Matrix into his cannon, but instead of making it even more powerful like he had hoped, visions of the Ancient Autobots (including Optimus Prime himself) seep out of the barrel and demand that Galvatron return the Matrix. Galvatron orders Scourge to destroy the Matrix, believing it better to be destroyed if the Decepticons can't have it. Scourge, however, inserts the Matrix into himself, and becomes more powerful - but at a startling price.

Meanwhile, the Autobot leader wakes up, to learn that he's reverted to Hot Rod. Springer and Ultra Magnus argue that they should go after the Decepticons, but Hot Rod feels that the Matrix isn't worth it, and jets off. Real smart idea, Roddy. On Chaar, Scourge challenges Galvatron, defeating him and Cyclonus. Scourge leads the Decepticons in an attack on Earth, with Galvatron and Cyclonus in pursuit. On Earth, Hot Rod, while watching a martial arts class, gets some perspective, and realizes that he needs to get the Matrix back. He tracks down Scourge, and manages to defeat him, reclaiming the Matrix and becoming Rodimus Prime once more. Galvatron and Cyclonus find a less powerful, and very frightened, Scourge. And they are none too happy with him...

As the Decepticons retreat, Rodimus realizes that he must deal with his missing part, as have those who came before him. Kup reminds him that no matter who carries the Matrix, he will retain that part forever.


Original airdate: November 19, 1986

Production number: 700-114

Written by: Michael Charles Hill


"He done blowed up real good."

Wildrider, master of grammar

"Let's waste this dinkus!"

Wildrider, again, master of grammar


Cyclonus, doing his Megatron impression

"I wish to see the look on Scourge's face as I demolish him!"

Galvatron, anxious to bust that ass

Cyclonus: We’re too late Galvatron. Scourge has already launched his assault.
Galvatron: He doesn’t know the meaning of the word assault. But he’s going to leeaarrnn.


Kiss it good-bye, Scourge.

Galvatron: O, Scourge?Where are you Scourge?Scourge?
Scourge: Mighty Galvatron, oh…no!Galvatron, you don’t understand!
Galvatron: Understand what?!
Scourge: It wasn’t my fault…it was the Matrix.
Galvatron: The Matrix… (transforms)then this too is the fault of the Matrix! (blasts Scourge)


Animation and/or technical glitchesEdit

  • When Wildrider transforms as they steal the Matrix, he has an Autobot logo on his chest.
  • When Rodimus is reverted back to Hot Rod, he's still occasionally drawn using Rodimus Prime's character model.
  • For some reason, the EDC letters on Marissa Faireborne's shoulder has been replaced with "AOC".
  • When Galvatron is about to put the Matrix in his cannon, Bruticus and Devastator are shown to be the same size as Galvatron.
  • When Hot Rod regains the Matrix, he sticks it into his chest without opening a compartment for it.
  • Optimus Prime is shown among the ancient Autobots, but he is colored completely blue.
  • At one point it looks like Galvatron has five o'clock shadow.
  • At one point, Galvatron's logo is colored red by mistake. (WHEN will this error stop popping up? WHEN?!?!?!?!)

Continuity errorsEdit

  • The episode "Masquerade" highlights oil-slicks to be Breakdown's schtick — however, in the car chase with Marissa Faireborn, it's Wildrider who drops one.
  • In "War Dawn", set nine million years ago, we see the start of the Third Cybertronian war, which makes Rodimus' "few dozen millenia" comment a little off. Like, "by a factor of over seven hundred" little.

Transformers referencesEdit

  • When Galvatron inserts the Matrix into his cannon, he says "Now, all shall become one, under Galvatron!"
  • Yes, Optimus Prime is among the Ancient Autobots. And yet his voice wasn't heard.

Real-world referencesEdit

  • Scourge becoming more powerful and agressive by the Matrix is how steroids affects people.


  • While the episode order can vary, it's a little funny that the episode about Rodimus finally getting used to being leader of the Autobots was followed by the episode in which Optimus returns to replace him. Unless you're in Japan, that is.
  • When Scourge starts mutating, at one point it looks like he's crying.
  • When Galvatron is about to put the Matrix in his cannon, Devastator is shown in his Generation 2 color scheme.
  • Speaking of which, this is the last appearance of Devastator.
  • Also, the last appearance of Springer. Despite the important roles he played in both the movie and some of the episodes, there were none about him.
  • Galvatron claims that the Matrix has eluded the Decepticons for years, even though it's only 2006 and he had possession of it during 2005 in Transformers the Movie.


(separate by commas and link each one so a page can be created for it if it does not already exist)

External linksEdit

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