Top 10 Best Transformers Series

VOICE OVER: Rebecca Brayton
Written by Alex Crilly Mckean

It's time to transform and roll out! Welcome to and today we're counting down our picks for the Top 10 Transformers Series!

For this list, we're taking a look at the best “Transformers” TV shows that have had a western release. We've based these picks on a mixture of fan-votes, popularity, overall quality, and our own personal preferences.

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It’s time to transform and roll out! Welcome to and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 Transformers Series!

For this list, we’re taking a look at the best “Transformers” TV shows that have had a western release. We’ve based these picks on a mixture of fan-votes, popularity, overall quality, and our own personal preferences.

#10: “Transformers: Rescue Bots” (2012-)

Who would have guessed that the “Transformers” could be fun and educational? Starting off on a more kid-friendly note, this spin-off follows a small group of Transformers known as the Rescue Bots, who assist a group of humans in stopping natural hazards and other non-world ending situations. Its gearing to a younger demographic will certainly veer hardcore fans away, but a show that teaches children about very real dangers under the banner of the Autobots is definitely worthy of praise. It must be doing something right: it’s the longest-running of any of its animated Autobot brethren.

#9: “Transformers: Robots in Disguise” (2000)

It’s not often you can say that a show just taking up time and space until another series is written good, but “Transformers: Robots in Disguise” managed to deliver. Serving as an almost alternate universe, this instalment shows the Autobots and their human allies battling against both the Predacons and the Decepticons, characters that went back to the very foundation of Transformers lore after other takes were used for the Beast Era. With mostly self-contained episodes, and fairly solid action and animation production, this venture proved to be an enjoyable viewing experience. When being translated over from its original Japanese, writers even added in some allusions to other “Transformers” programs. One thing is for sure: long-time fans will definitely appreciate this rad series.

#8: “Transformers: Energon” (2004)

When the Autobots and Decepticons battle for their version of fossil fuels, things get ugly! A direct sequel to “Transformers: Armada,” the story follows the Autobots and the rest of humanity as they join forces, focusing their efforts on finding the source of a Transformers power – Energon. Of course Megatron isn’t far behind, this time bringing the big guns in terms of the planet-sized Unicron! With the character models fully computer generated, this is one to check out for the stunning visuals alone!

#7: “Transformers: Cybertron” (2005-07)

Continuing with the trend of giving the Transformers the anime treatment, this series was released to the west as a sequel to “Transformers: Armada” and “Transformers: Energon,” despite being a completely distinct entity in Japan. Continuity issues aside, the animation was just as crisp and a lot more depth was given to each of the characters, especially in the form of the mysterious Vector Prime. Rounding off a trilogy of shows that wasn’t ever meant to be a trilogy, “Cybertron” certainly had more of an authentic feel than some of its predecessors.

#6: “Beast Machines: Transformers” (1999-2000)

“Beast Machines” might not have lived up to the awesomeness that was “Beast Wars,” but this controversial sequel certainly went in with guns blazing from the get-go. Awakening on Cybertron with no memory, Optimus and the Maximals are hunted by mechanical drones who operate under the orders of the planet’s new ruler, Megatron. This was definitely one of the darkest instalments in the franchise, with an overarching story filled with themes of balance, nature, and ascension. You have to give the creators props for taking a gamble on a much more adult oriented narrative, demonstrating that “Transformers” doesn’t have to be just kids stuff.

#5: “Transformers: Armada” (2002-03)

The seed that would eventually lead to “Transformers: Energon” and “Transformers: Cybertron,” this is the show that fully incorporated the anime style, bringing with it both vibrant and sharp action that fans could not get enough of. In yet another retelling, the Autobots and Decepticons’ battle lead to their eventual departure from their home planet, only this time in pursuit of creatures known as Mini-Cons, miniature robots with great destructive capabilities. Even though the show’s production was rushed and the animation could be full of errors, Optimus looks damn good kicking metal ass.

#4: “Transformers: Animated” (2007-09)

Don’t let the departure in style steer you away. This show is all kinds of awesome! After being awoken from stasis, the Autobots learn that the all-powerful, all-important, all-elusive Allspark is on Earth, along with a very pissed off Megatron. Re-treading old stories with a fresh look and plenty of modern humor, “Transformers: Animated” reaches a perfect balance of character, narrative, and fluid action. Plus the exceptional voiceover cast includes Tom Kenny as Starscream and Bill Fagerbakke as Bulkhead. That’s right, SpongeBob SquarePants and Patrick Star are both in a “Transformers” series!

#3: “Transformers: Prime” (2010-13)

“Transformers: Prime” not only mixed CG and 2D animation seamlessly together, but it also grabbed four Daytime Emmys! Once again, the Autobots and the Decepticons are at war with each other, but when Megatron comes back from deep space with a substance that can turn fallen machines into mindless zombies? That’s when this show hits its stride, becoming one of the most highly regarded in the franchise’s history. It also saw Peter Cullen and Frank Welker return to their iconic G1 roles as Optimus Prime and Megatron, respectively. Needless to say, fans were hooked!

#2: “The Transformers” (1984-87)

Despite all the cheesiness of the 80s layered into every episode, and the push to introduce as many new toys, err, we mean characters, each episode, the “Generation 1” series is indeed a classic and holds a special place in the hearts of true fans. The tale of the Autobots fighting for the freedom of all sentient beings against the infamous Megatron and his band of Decepticons is engrained into television history, and even after all these years it still holds up surprisingly well, both in animation and in action! And do we need to even mention that theme song?

Before our number one pick rises, here are a few honorable mentions.

“Transformers: The Headmasters” (1987-88)

#1: “Beast Wars: Transformers” (1996-99)

The first generation may have ruled the 80s, but our top pick goes to this 90s gem. This reimagining of the “Transformers” universe, which featured animal forms, quickly overcame early stumbles to become a love-letter to fans, and took the franchise to the next level. Crash-landed on a prehistoric Earth, the Maximals and Predacons battle it out while trying to find a way back to Cybertron. That is before encountering planet destroying aliens, and the dormant G1 spurring a desperate fight for the literal fate of the universe. With a strong narrative, great wit, higher stakes, and an excellent cast of fleshed out characters, Optimus Primal and an oh-so hammy Megatron gave us the war we were waiting for.
How the heck is Energon than RID 2001!?
At least The Transformers (1984-87) managed to make it to the second spot.