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This article is about the original version of Optimus Prime. If you were looking for other versions, see Optimus Prime
Hero Overview

Freedom is the right of all sentient beings.
~ Optimus Prime's motto


Autobots, transform and roll out!
~ One of Optimus Prime's most famous quotes


One shall stand, one shall fall.
~ Optimus facing Megatron in The Transformers: The Movie.

Optimus Prime, originally known as Orion Pax, is the main protagonist of the Transformers franchise.

He is the leader of the heroic Autobots, sworn protectors of humanity and Cybertron, and battles against the menace of the Decepticons and their evil ruler Megatron. Optimus Prime's main disguise has tended to be a large truck and he is generally seen as one of the most powerful Autobots on Earth.

Optimus Prime is voiced by Peter Cullen who also voiced the character in the live-action film series and the character in the Transformers: Prime animated series. He has also been voiced by Garry Chalk in other incarnations.

Personality

Cartoon

Optimus is a very brave and strong leader who fights with equal compassion and power, valuing all life and unwilling to bow down to tyranny or terror. He has an undying commitment to leadership and peace and sees violence only as a last resort. He is straightforward, wise, and upbeat. He believes in the good of everyone, not looking down on humans and other beings as lesser, like Megatron does.

He also dislikes rap music, putting him at odds with other Autobots such as Blaster or Jazz. Optimus also has a sense of humour to him, often making silly jokes and bad puns, although this can leave him when the situation demands it. Optimus is secretly plagued by self-doubt and pacifism that makes him a reluctant warrior.

Comics

Optimus is a brave, and inspirational leader, able to rally others under his leadership. In his youth he was arrogant and reckless, which led to him misjudging the Underbase situation on Cybertron. Optimus would suffer self doubt many times. The strain of the war affected his mental state, even being willing to sacrifice a shipful of Autobots, including himself, to defeat Megatron once and for all. After the plan failed Optimus regretted having stranded the Decepticons on Earth, but channelled that regret into defending his new home. Optimus showed himself as a kind and charismatic figure, always open to offer the hand of friendship to humanity, refusing to use the Creation Matrix to create beings with only the capacity to kill. He could even persuade the likes of Scorponok to ally with him against a greater threat. 

Powers

Being a Transformer, Optimus Prime can transform into a Kenworth K1000 cab over truck. With this, he can go at extremely fast speeds. He usually wields an ion blaster, a rifle that can shoots lethal explosive rounds and/or a barrage cannon, another rifle that shoots warheads filled with 3,000 pounds of TNT. He also has several melee weapons, such as energon axes, dual retracting swords, and hooks. He can also lift over 2,000 tons. In his chest is a mystic talisman, also known as the Autobot Matrix of Leadership and the Creation Matrix, carried by all Autobot leaders. When Optimus transforms, his cab turns into an ion blaster and his trailer disconnects, forming a combat deck. This deck supports a mobile battle station and headquarters armed with assorted artillery and beam weapons that fire automatically.

Quotes

There's a thin line between being a hero and being a memory.
~ Optimus Prime
Sometimes even the wisest of men and machines can be in error.
~ Optimus Prime
Megatron must be stopped, no matter the cost.
~ Optimus Prime before battling Megatron.
Nor was I. But one day, an Autobot shall rise from our ranks and use the power of the Matrix to light our darkest hour... Until that day… till all are one.
~ Optimus Prime's prophetic last words, before passing the Matrix to Ultra Magnus.
Optimus Prime: "You destroy everything you touch, Megatron!"
Megatron: "That's because everything I touch is food for my hunger. My hunger for power!"
Optimus Prime: "No! I am going to end your hunger once and for all."
~ Prime and Megatron in "More Than Meets The Eye".
We must have courage. We can't ignore the danger. We must conquer it.
~ Optimus Prime in "More Than Meets The Eye".
As the earthlings say, "Fat chance fathead!"
~ Optimus Prime in "The Ultimate Doom".
Hang onto your dreams, Chip. The future is built on dreams. Hang on.
~ Optimus Prime to Chip Chase.
Do not forget what you've learned of our past, Rodimus. From its lessons, the future is forged.
~ Optimus speaks to Rodimus Prime from the Matrix.
Now light our darkest hour.
~ Optimus Prime cures the Hate Plague by unleashing the wisdom within the Matrix.
I have the manifolds to stand up for those who cannot stand for themselves.
~ Optimus to Megatron, Transformers: Devastation.
Let us never forget our primary purpose - to spare this world from the scourge we have unwittingly unleashed upon it!
~ Optimus Prime in Marvel's the Transformers
Of course, I'd been fooling myself! Giving up isn't the answer! Giving up is never the answer! When it came to the crunch, did Ratchet just give up, shirk his responsibilities? No - he fought on, even though it cost him his life! And how do I honour his selfless sacrifice? I give up, I crawl away to wallow in self-centred misery! Well, no more! I will honour Ratchet's sacrifice - no, I will honour every Autobot who has fallen by fighting on - with all the strength and wisdom I possess! And I will not falter - until the tyranny of the Decepticons is an at end!
~ Optimus Prime recovers his spirit, Yesterday's Heroes.
I know I am asking much, my Autobots, but hear me out before you decide! All our lives we have been bred to fight, to struggle, to never give ground. It's ingrained in us! But that's with a normal enemy, a foe in our league! Unicron is neither! It's difficult to believe a single foe exists that we cannot vanquish through earnest effort and guts, but Unicron is powerful beyond measure, a fallen god! To stand a chance we must do the most difficult thing of all -- nothing! This surrender is not an act of cowardice on our parts... it requires the greatest courage of all! Will you stand with me, help me see it through?
~ Optimus Prime, "Surrender"

Trivia

  • Total Film Magazine named Optimus Prime the 30th greatest movie superhero of all time.
  • Optimus Prime is approximately 9 million years old, at least.
  • Optimus has been mentioned very publicly in global affairs in recent years. A 2008 Canadian Armed Forces operation in Afghanistan was named “Op Timis Preem,” in (an obvious but not publicly admitted) homage to the Autobot leader. It was an extremely successful operation, taking out key Taliban leaders and some Taliban infrastructure. While the Canadian military didn’t directly cite Optimus Prime as a reference for their mission, British Prime Minister Gordon Brown was much more blatant about his Optimus love in 2009. After speaking on the radio about toys his children received for Christmas, he said he hoped he could meet Optimus Prime because “he seems to be able to solve most of the problems.”
  • For Optimus voice, Peter based it on his late brother Larry Cullen's voice.
  • There are huge statues of Optimus in China.
  • In State Games, Optimus has "Prime" being used as his surname, with no special connotations. After "Prime" was said to be title of those who carried the Matrix, this comes across as anomalous. 
  • Optimus Prime, Bumblebee and Spike Witwicky are the only main characters to appear in all of the seasons (especially the first and final episode) of the G1 cartoon.

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See Also
Battleship Heroes | G.I. Joe Heroes | Jem and the Holograms Heroes | My Little Pony Heroes | Transformers Heroes | Transformers Cinematic Universe Heroes | Transformers G1 Heroes | Transformers Prime Heroes | Transformers: War for Cybertron Trilogy Heroes

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Autobots
General
Optimus Prime | Bumblebee/Goldbug | Arcee (G1) | Jazz (G1) | Ironhide (G1) | Wheeljack | Ratchet (G1) | Hound (G1) | Prowl (G1) | Sideswipe (G1) | Sunstreaker | Blurr | Mirage | Skids | Hoist | Tracks | Windcharger | Blaster (Steeljaw, Ramhorn, Eject, Rewind) | Red Alert | Smokescreen | Trailbreaker | Bluestreak | Beachcomber | Inferno | Huffer | Rodimus Prime | Grapple | Ultra Magnus | Skyfire | Sky Lynx | Cliffjumper | Kup | Brawn | Tailgate | Gears | Outback | Metroplex | Sandstorm | Cosmos | Omega Supreme | Perceptor | Springer | Broadside | SeaSpray | Pipes | Warpath | Wheelie | Wreck-Gar | Sentinel Prime

Dinobots
Grimlock (G1) | Slag | Sludge | Snarl | Swoop
Aerialbots
Silverbolt | Fireflight | Slingshot | Skydive | Air Raid | Superion
Protectobots
Hot Spot | Groove | First Aid | Blades | Streetwise
Technobots
Scattershot | Lightspeed | Strafe | Nosecone | Afterburner
Headmasters
Fortress Maximus | Highbrow | Chromedome | Hardhead | Brainstorm

Cartoon exclusive
Alpha Trion | Elita-One | Chromia | Firestar | Moonracer

Comics exclusive
Scrounge | Impactor | Emirate Xaaron | Wreckers (Roadbuster, Topspin & Twin Twist, Whirl) | Primus | Getaway | Nightbeat | Siren

Humans
General
Spike Witwicky | Sparkplug Witwicky | Daniel Witwicky

Cartoon exclusive
Carly Witwicky | Chip Chase | Rauol | Astoria Carlton-Ritz | Marissa Faireborn

Comics exclusive
Buster Witwicky | Jesse | G.B Blackrock | Joy Meadows | Susan Hoffman | Cindy Newell

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