Anyone who grew up in the 1980s remembers the Transformers. And because of that fact, many of us have grown increasingly bewildered by how little the live-action films resemble the cartoon and toys we loved so much. But, the upcoming movie Bumblebee seems set to change all of that. For the first time since the 1987 animated epic movie — Transformers: The Movie — we’re getting a Transformers movie that looks like a Transformers movie. Most reboots and sequels rely on nostalgia to a certain extent, but the nostalgia in Bumblebee is more potent because, for a certain kind of ’80s kid, it feels like this aesthetic has been bafflingly withheld by the people behind the Transformers movies. In other words, why hasn’t this always been the approach: just make a live-action version of the damn cartoon!
Thankfully, Bumblebee seems like it will quickly erase our fuzzy memories of the previous Transformers films. But, which thing are we most nostalgic about? Here are six huge things from the newest trailer and in your Autobot heart, you know make your inner child the happiest.
6. Starscream and Shockwave
When the action in the trailer mentions an “army” of Decepticons, we briefly get a shot of Shockwave and Starscream. And they look exactly like your old toys of these guys did! Everybody remembers that Starscream was the high-pitched guy who turned into a plane and was Megatron’s jerky right-hand-robot. But if you don’t remember Shockwave, he was the guy who stayed behind on Cybertron, and the toy version of him transformed into a purple ray gun. He also has one eye, making him more like a classic sci-fi robot than pretty much any of the other Transformers.
5. Triple Changers
Most Transformers can change from a robot and into something else. But the triple-changers can go from one kind of vehicle to another kind of vehicle, to robot mode in a second. Usually, this means they can do a land vehicle as well as something that flies. The most notable Transformers capable of this was probably AstroTrain: a Decepticon who transformed into a space shuttle and, you guessed it, a train, too.
4. The Planet Cybertron
It’s the home planet of the Autobots and the Decepticons! A planet populated ONLY by living machines! Even Star Trek never had anything this cool! Also, Cybertron pretty much looks exactly how it looked in all of our old storybooks and in the cartoons. YES!
3. Bumblebee is a VW Bug Again!
This one is pretty obvious, but as everyone already knows, in the 2007 reboot version of Transformers, Bumblebee turned into a Camero, probably for product-placement reasons. Now, he’s an awesome VW Bug. Thank god. This would be the most nostalgic thing in the new trailer, but of course, it’s somehow not.
2. Truly Old School Optimus Prime
Oh man! Peter Cullen, perhaps the most famous and simultaneously underrated voice actor has been playing Optimus Prime since the dawn of time. And even though he’s also been doing the voice since the first 2007 Michael Bay movie, this is totally different. Why? Well, because this is arguably the first time Optimus Prime looks like Optimus Prime since the ’80s. In the new trailer, there are two glimpses of old-school Optimus: one in hologram form, talking to Bumblebee, and another, presumably chilling on Cybertron.
1. Soundwave Ejecting Cassette Tape Transformers
The most impracticable Transformer was also the best one: the Decepticon who turned into a boombox. We’re talking about Soundwave, the guy who shot out cassette tapes that turned into smaller robots. Absurdly, the most famous two cassette tape robots he possessed were also robot animals. Laserbeak and Ravage are, respectively, a robot bird and a robot wildcat. But, they are disguised as cassette tapes, that seem to live perpetually inside of Soundwave’s tape-deck body, until needed. Why was it necessary for the cassette tape robots to be transformed into tapes? Why not even smaller objects? People genuinely thought Bumblebee was a real car and Optimus was a real semi-truck. No one ever thought Soundwave looked like a real boombox, nor did anyone think Ravage and Laserbeak (or Rumble) looked like real tapes. So what was the plan here? Worst Decepticon ever, right?
Wrong. Soundwave and his ejecting tape-minions are one of the things everyone loved about the ’80s Transformers because it was so absurd. Relevantly, Soundwave has to say “Ravage, eject,” in the most roboty-robot voice you’ve ever heard before unleashing these guys on the world. Which rocks. For all these reasons, his inclusion in the new Bumblebee trailer is awesome. Let’s just hope his appearance in the final movie is more than a cameo.
Bumblebee is out in theaters on December 21, 2018.