Insecticons


 

G1 Cartoon Background -

The Insecticons were an addition to the Decepticon army towards the end of Season 1 of the G1 cartoon.   The three Insecticons were named Bombshell, Shrapnel, and Kickback.  They came to Earth aboard a Decepticon Escape Pod before the Ark crashed to Earth.  They stayed hidden on prehistoric Earth by creating insect alternate modes.  The Insecticons had strange distorted voices and speech patterns.


The first time they were shown, they were stalking villagers in Bali.  They would hide in the water to attack boats.  Bombshell swims under a boat and rises to the surface, sending the boat and the man inside flying.  Shrapnel emerges from the water and fires a laser blast from his pincers at another boat. Bombshell and Shrapnel eat the cargo of the small fishing boats as Kickback watches. Kickback leaps off of a tree to another boat and sinks it.  The Insecticons hear the survivors talk about a farm, and the trio plans to attack the farm to eat the crops.  The Insecticons were the first Transformers in the G1 continuity to be able to eat organic food.  The three Insecticons transform and fly out of the water to the farm.  While the Insecticons are investigating the farm, Megatron and a few Decepticons arrive in the swamp and find the Insecticon base (very loosely considered a base, more of a hive).  The Insecticons find that the farm is to their liking and they transform into beast mode to attack.  The farmers scatter and the Insecticons eat the farm’s crops.  During the Insecticons’ feast, a farmer is so frightened that he abandons his combine.  It continues to plow out of control.  Kickback kicks it away with his powerful rear legs and it explodes.  The Insecticons transform into robot mode when they see Skyfire approaching with the Autobots.  As the Autobots reach the farm, the Insecticons fire on them with fireballs.  The Insecticons’ attacks aren’t powerful enough to harm the Autobots.  The Autobots prepare for a quick battle since they outnumber the Insecticons.  The three Insecticons work together to create an army of clones which overwhelm the Autobots.  The new clones work together to fight the Autobots.  They fire a laser at Brawn, hitting him in the chest.  The Bombshells fire missiles at Windcharger and Bumblebee, making them scatter.  A Kickback attacks Skyfire by kicking him to the ground.  The Insecticons rush at the four Autobots and Spike, forcing them to retreat.  The Insecticons follow the fleeing Autobots into a corn field.  The Autobots are trying to hide while they wait for reinforcements.  Shrapnel fires a sphere from his hand that sprays shrapnel across the field.  The battle comes to an abrupt end when Megatron arrives on the farm to recruit the Insecticons into the Decepticon army.  The combined forces attack the Autobots in the cornfield.  At the last minute, the rest of the Autobots reach the farm.  Sideswipe and Sunstreaker leap into the air and tackle Shrapnel and Kickback.  Megatron orders the Decepticons and Insecticons to retreat to an oil refinery.  The Decepticons and Insecticons realize they are being chased by Skyfire.  The Insecticons break off from the Decepticons and fight Skyfire.  Kickback fires on Skyfire, but it doesn’t seem to be powerful enough to damage him.  Bombshell and Shrapnel attack while in beast mode and clamp onto Skyfire’s wings.  He is saved when Wheeljack flies into the air and shoots the Insecticons with his shoulder rocket.  Kickback knocks Wheeljack out of the sky.  The Autobots continue to track the Insecticons.  Shrapnel is able to use one of his abilities to take control of Sideswipe and Sunstreaker’s motor functions.  They are still aware of everything, but they can’t control themselves in vehicle mode.  Trailbreaker breaks Shrapnel’s control with his force fields.  Optimus Prime throws Brawn at Shrapnel so he could attack the Insecticon.  Brawn rides Shrapnel as the Insecticon tries to shake the Autobot off of him.  He isn’t able to, but Kickback kicks Brawn off of Shrapnel.  The Insecticons disengage from the Autobot battle and meet up with the Decepticons at the oil refinery.  The Insecticons are hungry, so they bite a hole in a oil tanker  and drink it’s oil.  Skyfire knocks the Insecticons off of the oil tanker.  Then the rest of the Autobots reach the oil refinery and battle the Insecticons and Decepticons.  Shrapnel fires a shrapnel grenade at Optimus Prime, Brawn, and Wheeljack.  They dive into the water to avoid damage.  Storm clouds move in and Bombshell sends a probe into the sky.  It causes more lightning which the Insecticons use to charge themselves up.  Shrapnel knocks down Wheeljack and Trailbreaker with an energy blast, then targets Optimus Prime.  Bumblebee transforms and charges at Shrapnel.  Shrapnel fires over and over, but it has no effect on Bumblebee.  Bumblebee’s tires insulated him from the electricity.  Wheeljack rides on top of Sunstreaker to attack Shrapnel.  He damages the Insecticon with his shoulder blaster.  Optimus Prime uses Brawn and Ironhide as roller skates and shrugs off an electrical blast from all three Insecticons.  Optimus Prime fires on the Insecticons and damages them.   Trailbreaker sees that Bumblebee and Spike are surrounded by Insecticon clones.  He uses his force field to disrupt Shrapnel’s control and the clones disappear.  The Insecticons end their alliance (for now) with the Decepticons and retreat after Optimus Prime throws an oil tanker at Megatron.


Off screen, Megatron and the Insecticons work out their differences.  When Megatron and the Decepticons steal a piece of energy creating equipment, they create a base in a desert valley.  After the Autobots attack, the Insecticons arrive to provide assistance to the Decepticons.  Shrapnel shoots Mirage in the back to defend Skywarp.  Kickback watches Optimus Prime and Megatron square off, before they can engage one another, Kickback shoots Optimus Prime in the chest.  Cliffjumper tries to shoot Shrapnel out of the sky but misses.  Then Shrapnel transforms into robot mode and fires on Cliffjumper, his accuracy is as bad as Cliffjumper’s.  Shrapnel continues to shoot his weapon at Cliffjumper, but he jumps to avoid each blast.  Shrapnel hits the Electro Cells and they start to explode.  The Autobots retreat so the Electro Cells won’t be in jeopardy anymore.  After the battle,  the Insecticons guard their own supply of Energon Cubes.  They don’t notice a cloaked Mirage stealing the cubes.  The Insecticons fly to the Decepticon base assuming that the Decepticons were the ones who stole their Energon Cubes.  While Megatron and Starscream are shooting at Mirage, the energy blasts wind up hitting rocks near the Insecticons.  The Insecticons think that the Decepticons are attacking them.  The Insecticons transform into beast mode to attack the Decepticons.  The Decepticons fly into the air to fight the Insecticons.   Skywarp shoots the three Insecticons with his blaster.  Kickback uses his powerful legs to kick Skywarp out of the sky.  Shrapnel unleashes his shrapnel bomb on the Decepticons but Mirage is hit with a metal fragment.  Mirage falls to the ground and the Insecticons stand over him.  Shrapnel wants to kill him, but Bombshell says he has other plans.  Bombshell transforms into beast mode and injects Mirage with a Cerebro Shell, causing him to be controlled.  Bombshell transforms back into robot mode and orders Mirage to stand up.  He orders Mirage to fire his shoulder launcher at Skywarp.  As the battle continues, Mirage remains under Bombshell’s control.  Mirage damages Thundercracker with his rocket.  Megatron sneaks behind the Insecticons and is about to fire on Bombshell.  Both sides accuse the other of stealing their Energon supply.  Bombshell assumed that the Decepticons stole their Energon because they found the Decepticon insignia that Mirage left on the ground.  Megatron makes Bombshell realize that Mirage has been manipulating them.  Bombshell and Megatron reaffirm their alliance.   Bombshell is about to shoot Mirage with plans to kill him.  Megatron won’t let him.  He wants to use Mirage as a tool to finish the Autobots.  Mirage leads the Autobots into an Ambush.  When Bombshell’s hold of Mirage starts to fade, he wants to shoot Mirage.  Ratchet saves him by scaring the Insecticon away with his blaster.  When Ratchet examines Mirage, he finds the Cerebro Shell and removes it.  Mirage’s freewill is restored.  The Autobots are victorious when the Electro Cells are destroyed, and the Decepticons are forced to retreat.


Bombshell reprograms and upgrades a human made robot named Nightbird.  Once Bombshell is done with her, she is able to fight the Autobots.  Bombshell, Megatron, and Starscream watch as Nightbird fights and defeats the Autobots.  Bombshell wishes they stole more of Dr. Fujiama’s (the creator of Nightbird) creations.   Starscream predicts that Bombshell’s upgrades will make Nightbird burn out but Bombshell defends his work.   After Nightbird is defeated in battle, the Decepticons and Bombshell attack the Autobots to get the data chip.  Brawn shoots Bombshell causing him to drop the chip.  The battle ends when Starscream betrays the Decepticons by using his null rays to deactivate Nightbird.  

The Insecticons remain separate from the Decepticons.  They try to live on their own in the wild.  The Insecticons make a hive in a forest and start eating the trees.  This reinforces the fact that they are able to ingest organic food in addition to Energon.  Inside of their hive, they plan another food run, they are starving.  Bombshell explains that they are eating entire forests but are still hungry.  It seems that while they are able to consume organic material, it doesn’t satiate them like Energon would.  They transform to look for another forest to eat, this time, a red wood forest.  While they are eating the massive trees, a forest ranger discovers them and contacts his colleague who was already with the Autobots.  The Insecticons continue to feast on the redwood trees as Hound, Beachcomber, and Bumblebee approach.  Shrapnel unleashes a grenade at the Autobots, and Hound dodges it in vehicle mode.  The other two Insecticons transform into robot mode.  Bombshell praises Shrapnel for his assault on the Autobots.  Bombshell takes to the air and starts firing energy blasts at Bumblebee.  Bumblebee hides in the forest to escape.  Shrapnel is about to shoot Beachcomber and Hound, but Bumblebee rams into the Insecticon with his shoulder.  Even though it looks like the Autobots have the upper hand, they decide to retreat.  Kickback tries to use his legs to make a massive log roll onto the Autobots.  Shrapnel and Bombshell see he can’t do it alone and help.  The log rolls down the hill towards the Autobots and destroys everything in it’s path.  The Autobots try to escape by following a stream.  The Autobots are trapped when the stream turns into a waterfall.  The log rolls over the Autobots and they fall off the waterfall.  The Decepticons approach the Insecticons after watching their victory.  Megatron tells the Insecticons about a power plant near by that can cure their hunger.  He wants the Insecticons to perform a task after they feed, but he won’t tell them what the task is.  The ravenous Insecticons will do anything for energy and agree, even though they don’t know what Megatron’s task is.  Megatron soon tells them that he wants them to siege Iron Mountain and steal a combat computer for him.  Together, the Insecticons and Decepticons travel to the Nova Power Plant so the Insecticons can feed.  While Megatron and Soundwave fight the Autobots, the Insecticons enter the power plant to feed.  Bombshell eats a hole in the outer wall so the Insecticons can go inside of the power plant.  They start to eat the reactor and all of it’s energy.  This causes the Insecticons to grow exponentially.  With their new power, they plan to betray Megatron (again....).  Soundwave was listening in on the Insecticons and when they discover him they attack.  Shrapnel (who is now substantially taller than Soundwave) restrains Soundwave so Bombshell can insert a Cerebro Shell into the Decepticon’s head.  Soundwave is now under Insecticon control.  The Insecticons return to the reactor and continue to feed.  When they are full, they burst out of the reactor chamber and Bombshell quickly notices Ironhide and Wheeljack climbing electrical towers.  The Insecticons transform into insect mode to fight them.  Shrapnel shoots an electrical beam at the tower which Ironhide is climbing and it starts to crumble.  Bombshell shoots Wheeljack’s tower, damaging it’s structural integrity.  Kickback then uses his strong legs to kick the tower down, sending Wheeljack falling to the ground.  Ironhide soon falls as well.   The Autobots retreat back to their headquarters to repair the wounded and the Decepticons continue to fire at them until they are out of range.  Now that the Insecticons are “invincible”, Megatron plans to use them to gather the combat computer from Iron Mountain.  The Insecticons are unstable because of the energy they consumed.  They may explode.  While the Insecticons and Decepticons fly to Iron Mountain, they listen in on Megatron telling Soundwave that he plans to destroy the Insecticons after the mission.  When the Decepticons and Insecticons attack Iron Mountain, they receive more resistance than they expected.  The facility has a significant and powerful defense system.  The automated defenses fire cannons at the Decepticons and surround the base with a force field.  Shrapnel is amused when Megatron is knocked to his feet by one of the automated cannons.  Bombshell starts to feel strange, the unstable energy inside of him is preparing to explode, he has no clue that he is in danger.  Shrapnel uses his beetle horns to disorient the automated cannons.  He reprograms them to attack the Iron Mountain facility.  The Autobots arrive to save the Insecticons and protect Iron Mountain.  Megatron orders the Decepticons to steal the facility’s computers while the Insecticons battle the Autobots.  Shrapnel fires his blaster at a rock formation above the attacking Autobots.  It causes a rock slide and traps the Autobots.  The Insecticons cheer when they think the Autobots are defeated.  Once Megatron and Soundwave complete their mission by stealing all of the information inside of Iron Mountain’s computers, Megatron orders the Decepticons to attack the Insecticons.  All of the Decepticons except Megatron and Starscream were implanted with Cerebro Shells and are under Bombshells command.  Before Megatron and Starscream can attack, Bombshell fires Cerebro Shells at them.  Starscream is hit, but Megatron catches it. Megatron throws the Cerebro Shell to the ground and steps on it.  This inflicts Bombshell with a debilitating head ache.  Megatron is about to fire his fusion cannon at Bombshell, but Optimus Prime tackles him to protect Bombshell.  If Megatron hit Bombshell with his cannon, Bombshell would explode, possibly killing everyone in the facility.  While Optimus Prime and Megatron are rolling around in the dirt, the Insecticons transform and fly into Iron Mountain.  They want the data for themselves.  Bombshell orders the mind controlled Decepticons to fire their weapons at Optimus Prime and Megatron.  Megatron and Optimus Prime form a very brief truce.  Together, they use Ratchet and Wheeljack’s serum to prevent the Insecticons from exploding.  Megatron uses his fusion cannon to make the Insecticons scatter.  The Insecticons are in pain from the unstable energy they absorbed from the Nova Power Plant.  Shrapnel fires his blaster at Megatron and sends him crashing through a wall.  Optimus rushes to help Megatron up.  Optimus Prime gets an idea on how they can stop the Insecticons.  Megatron transforms into gun mode and Optimus Prime loads the cure into him.  Optimus fires Megatron at Bombshell, preventing him from exploding.  Kickback transforms and grabs Soundwave.  He tries to kick a hole in the wall so he can escape.  Optimus fires Megatron at him and cures him.  Shrapnel remains the only one who is going to explode.  Lightning strikes Shrapnel that came in from the hole that Kickback made.  Shrapnel feels that he is able to defeat all of the Autobots and Decepticons himself.  He shoots lightning at Optimus Prime.  Optimus is damaged and drops Megatron.  Spike saves the day by climbing up Shrapnel’s body and throws the serum inside of Shrapnel’s chest.  Shrapnel still detonates, but the explosion is significantly smaller. Once the Insecticons are cured, they shrink to their regular size. Bombshell shoots an energy beam at Shrapnel and he reforms.  The Cerebro Shells implanted in the Decepticons are all deactivated.  The Insecticons transform into bug mode and fly away with the Decepticons chasing them.


The Insecticons lead a swarm of their clones to a farm in Asia.  They are driven by their never ending hunger for food.  The farmers seem to have some familiarity and recognize the Insecticons.  After consuming all of the crops, they move on to another farm, this time in the United States.  Kickback flips a tractor over with his legs.  Shrapnel fires a laser blast from his mandibles at a different tractor and it explodes.  Bombshell tells the other two Insecticons to stop playing around and start eating.  The Autobots seem to take their time to engage the Insecticons.  Tracks attacks the Insecticons with his shoulder rocket and the Insecticons scatter.  Shrapnel fires back with an energy blast that burns Tracks.  Warpath fires his cannon at Kickback, but the Insecticon is able to avoid all of his attacks.  Bombshell and Shrapnel work together to attack Huffer.  Their combined attack makes the small Autobot fall to the ground.  The team of Autobots are overwhelmed by the swarm of Insecticons.  The transform and retreat.  After the Insecticon Swarm eats as much as they can hold, they go to the Decepticon Undersea Base to turn the organic food into Energon.  Megatron seems to welcome them and is glad to see them (Despite the fact that every time he tries to ally himself with the Insecticons, they double cross him with the exception of the time that Bombshell helped modify Nightbird).  Megatron creates a chamber that will drain the Energon that they created from organic matter.  While the Insecticons are inside of the chamber, they complain that it is too slow.  Skywarp brings the Insecticons a few Energon Cubes as payment.  The Insecticons are disappointed with the small amount of Energon they are getting.  They were expecting a lot more.  Megatron explains that the energy transfer process eats up a lot of energy.  Thrust flies to the Insecticons to give them a message from Megatron.  Megatron wants the Insecticons and their clones to stay in a valley until the Decepticons can steal an experimental insecticide from the Autobots.  Thrust is a little brusque and rude, but he makes it clear that Megatron is trying to help them by keeping them corralled until he can prevent the Autobots from harming the Insecticons.  The Insecticons don’t believe him and think Megatron is out to get them.  They also think Megatron is trying to hide something from them.  They send Thrust away and Shrapnel shoots him with a laser.  Thrust flies away to escape.  The Insecticons decide to not listen to Megatron’s warning.  They transform into insect mode and take to the air.  They rally their clones to leave the valley that they were feeding in.  The Insecticons and their clones fly to the valley where the Morphobots were planted.  Megatron thinks that the Insecticons are there to help him, but they just want more food.  All of the Insecticon clones were devoured by the Morphobots when the clones try to eat the Morphobots.

After staying hidden for a while, the Insecticons return and ally themselves again with Megatron.  The Insecticons have regained their ability to clone themselves after the Morphobot incident with Megatron’s help.  The Insecticons overtake a city for a meal and Megatron watches in the  The Swarm of Insecticons levels the city, leaving nothing but the rubble of destroyed buildings.  Kickback and Shrapnel are eating the remains of some of the buildings.  The Autobots attack and the Insecticons try to defend themselves.  Prowl fires on the Insecticons with a blaster from his vehicle mode.  As the other Autobots open fire, the Insecticons try to hide by digging holes in the ground.  Tracks falls off the road and discovers a cavern Optimus Prime and Tracks transform into vehicle mode to engage the Insecticons.  The Insecticons are spreading through the city and destroying more and more of it.  Megatron leaves the battle with Shrapnel.  They go to the Space Bridge.  Optimus Prime wants to use it to go to Cybertron, so Shrapnel rips off the control panel and escapes into the ground.  The Insecticons are able to shake the Autobots from following them.  They find their way to a garage and Kickback eats parts of a car.  The Insecticons are caught by Ramjet, Megatron, and the Autobots.  When they try to retrieve the control panel, it is damaged beyond repair.  The Insecticons tried to eat it.

(to be continued later to include Transformers the Movie)

Marvel G1 Comic Background -

The Insecticons were a group of Decepticons that stayed on Cybertron after Megatron left to pursue The Ark.  Their ranks included Shrapnel, Bombshell, and Kickback.



While on Cybertron, Shrapnel was an officer in a communications hub which was in Polyhex, a city on Cybertron controlled by Decepticon Straxus. He learns of an Autobot spy named Scrounge, and even though Scrounge gets away, Shrapnel tracks him down captures him, and brings him to Straxus where the other Insecticons acted as his soldiers.  After Straxus rips off Scrounge’s arm, he orders Shrapnel to bring him to a holding cell.  When Blaster escapes from Straxus’ Smelting Pool, The Insecticons pursue Blaster and The Autobot Resistance.

After an unsuccessful test of The Space Bridge, Shrapnel talks back to Straxus.  Straxus threatens to use Shrapnel as the next test subject for the space bridge, a task that would be fatal.

The Space Bridge is eventually made fully operational and The Insecticons come to Earth and take more Earth looking alt-modes.  On the 4th of July, Bombshell stalks a man named Ricky Vasquez, who is a dam worker.  Bombshell shoots Ricky with a Cerebro-shell and gains control over him.  Bombshell then shares control with Megatron and explains that Ricky is the chief engineer of the dam and they are going to use him in another plot to drain energy from Earth.  To prove Bombshell is in total control of Ricky, he orders Ricky to clean him using nothing but his tongue..  Inside the dam, the Insecticons stay in insect mode which is much smaller than their robot modes (See Mass Shifting) and when The Coneheads are unable to defeat The Aerialbots, the Insecticons are ordered to join the fight by Megatron.  They are defeated and Bombshell hides on Silverbolt, hitching a ride back to The Ark.  Bombshell injects Optimus Prime with a Cerebro-Shell, but because Optimus is so powerful, Bombshell can’t control Optimus, he can only monitor his thoughts.  When Optimus goes to use The Creation Matrix, Bombshell is able to duplicate the program and gives it to Megatron.

 

 

 

 

 

IDW Background -

(coming soon)

Abilities -

The Insecticons had numerous abilities beyond the typical Decepticon. In the Marvel Comic, they were able to mass shift to be the same size as Earth insects. Bombshell is able to fire a cerebro shell which has the ability to control someone's mind. Between the cartoon and the comic book, it was demonstrated to effect both organic and inorganic creatures. Shrapnel is able to deploy a shrapnel grendade and fire powerful electrical attacks from his pincers in bug mode. Shrapnel can also take control of other Transformers, but only their motor functions, not their mind. Kickback has powerful legs in bug mode

Toy Reviews

Titans Return Kickback
CHUG Skrapnel (aka Shrapnel)
CHUG Bombshell


Back to Top