Transformers: Generation 1
Generation 1 Rumble box toy
The first toy for Rumble was originally released in an earlier Takara toy line called Microman. In cassette mode, the toy was able to fit inside the body of Cassetteman (who would later become Soundwave). When the line was imported to the U.S. as Transformers, the toy was released in two different colors as different characters—Rumble and Frenzy.
Rumble's colors changed over the course of Generation one, originally being red (leading to confusion as Frenzy was blue) in the original toyline and Marvel comics. The cartoon made Rumble the blue robot instead. Dreamwave comics, IDW comics, and even the recently released Alternators toy all represented Rumble as a red robot. The Japanese dub of the original Transformers series switched Rumble and Frenzy's names around so that their cartoon appearances would match the colors of their toys.
His personality in both Marvel Comics and in the animated series was described as being a basic street punk. He was always ready for action and eagerly carried out Megatron's orders. He can cause earthquakes with his piston-like arms.
According to X-Entertainment Rumble was one of the cult icons Transformers cartoon, but often people confused his toy with that of Frenzy.
Rumble's Marvel Comics appearance would use Rumble's red color scheme. Because black coloring in those days usually involved darker inking and dark blues, Rumble ended up looking like a blue robot with red limbs. The same problem happened to Skywarp, who looked almost identical to his cohort Thundercracker because of it.
According to Marvel's Transformers comics, Rumble and Frenzy are brothers. Rumble was one of the Decepticons that originally attacked the Ark and subsequently crashed to Earth. Reconfigured into the Earth mode of a microcassette, he participated in many of the early battles against the Autobots (even being defeated by a robo-suited Buster Witwicky at one point in the U.K. comics). Unfortunately, he accompanied Megatron in his raid against the Autobot base, summarily getting deactivated by Omega Supreme along with Starscream, Skywarp, Thundercracker, Frenzy and Buzzsaw. It would be a while before Rumble was seen again, being freed in U.S. issue #41.
Although he was seen being deactivated by the Underbase-powered Starscream, Rumble would not appear again until the Transformers: Generation 2 series, where he, along with many of the original Decepticons, would be restored to prominence by Megatron's return. He would battle both the Autobots (taking out Hot Rod at one point) and Jhiaxus' second generation Cybertronians. As he was not seen to be killed, it is assumed he survived.
Rumble is often partnered with Soundwave, along with other cassette Decepticons Ravage and Laserbeak. Because of his coloration on the original cartoon, he is sometimes identified as Frenzy, as the color schemes for Frenzy and Rumble were actually transposed.
Throughout the animated series Rumble was perceived as tough and full of firepower, but his fellow Decepticons, being much larger, were significantly more powerful. He gave the weaker Autobots, such as Hound, Mirage and Bumblebee hard times on the battlefield, due to their lack of warrior-like capabilities, although in one episode, Hound beat the tar out of Rumble during a huge Autobots/Decepticons battle. Due to his small size and average intelligence, he displayed a Napoleon complex and often tried to prove his loyalty to Soundwave and Megatron through tough talk and destructive tendencies.
Rumble debuted in the series opener "More Than Meets the Eye Part 1", being used by Soundwave and Starscream to destroy a power station with his piledriver arms, and later to cause a large wave that would allow the Decepticons to create Energon cubes at a nearby dam. He battled and defeated Hound underwater, although the Autobot would get his revenge later on. Rumble appeared regularly throughout the series, although he rarely had major roles, and was usually called on to create tremors with his arms (such as in "Enter the Nightbird" or "Attack of the Autobots").
He was defeated by Sludge in "S.O.S. Dinobots" when his attempt at generating an earthquake was thwarted by Sludge's own.
One of Rumble's missiles damaged Red Alert in "Auto-Berserk", plunging the Autobot into a paranoid stupor.
In the episode "Sea Change", Rumble was humiliatingly turned into a tree through magic.
He was sent by Megatron to steal the cars that would become the Stunticons in "The Key to Vector Sigma part 1".
One of Rumble's most prominent appearances was in the episode "A Decepticon Raider in King Arthur's Court". Warpath, Hoist and Spike Witwicky were battling Starscream, Ramjet, Rumble and Ravage in England. Low on power, the Autobots and Decepticons discovered a magical stone formation called the Dragon Mound and were transported back to the year 543 AD. Although Starscream attempted to take over a castle and build a new empire with himself as lord, the help of local knights and a wizard refueled the Autobots, who defeated the Decepticons. After defeating a dragon who nested in the Dragon Mound the Autobots and Decepticons and returned to their own time where they rejoined the fight in modern-day England. Here, Rumble ended up in a jousting contest atop his "steed" Ramjet.
Rumble appeared in The Transformers: The Movie, cutting off the Autobot communications alongside Frenzy, Ravage and Ratbat, before battling their Autobot counterparts. During the leadership debate aboard Astrotrain (after Megatron had been unceremoniously set adrift in space) Rumble and Frenzy were deployed when the Constructicons insulted Soundwave's leadership ability (Rumble: "Hey! Nobody calls Soundwave un-crasamatic!)" (uncharismatic)). When they tried to form into Devastator, Rumble and Frenzy used their piledriver arms to shake the giant into his component pieces.
Rumble also appeared during the beginning of the third season in "Five Faces of Darkness," but disappeared shortly thereafter.
In the Japanese anime Transformers Headmasters, Rumble made sporadic appearances along other cassettes. He was first seen in the fourth episode of Headmasters, just after Soundwave is re-built as Soundblaster.
Rumble appeared in the 1986 story and coloring book The Lost Treasure of Cybertron by Marvel Books.
In the third series, he and Frenzy inadvertently wrecked Shockwave's attempts to study the Seeker clones that Megatron had used to conquer Cybertron.
When the Ark crashed to Earth in 1984, Rumble was among the Decepticons on board. Battling the Autobots repeatedly, they were eventually defeated by a combined human-Autobot alliance. They were to be taken back to Cybertron, but were sabotaged by rogue elements of the U.S. military, who wanted to build weapons using Transformers technology. Unable to do this, they began to control the Transformers themselves. Rumble was among the Transformers who briefly fell under the control of the terrorist, Lazarus.
Rumble would not appear until the second miniseries, War and Peace, when both sides were lured to the wilderness in Alaska by a mysterious beacon. Both sides battled until the arrival of a force led by Shockwave and Ultra Magnus, who defeated Megatron and arrested all present as war criminals. Desperate to save their own necks, Frenzy and Rumble both joined up with Shockwave and were assigned by him to guard the badly damaged Megatron. They failed as Starscream was able to dump Megatron's body in space (reminiscent of his fate in the 1986 movie). They were then sent by Shockwave on a critical mission—reviving the Stunticons.
They were later co-opted by Starscream and headed to Earth with him, along with Soundwave, Skywarp, Thundercracker and the Combaticons. They defeated most of the Autobots still on Earth, but were themselves attacked by Sunstorm. After Starscream defeated him (with aid from the Autobots) he returned to his base to find Soundwave, Rumble and Frenzy acting oddly. The reason why would soon become clear—Megatron had returned, backed by the Predacons, and Soundwave had been taking orders from him all along. Any further tales of Rumble would never be told, as Dreamwave went bankrupt.
Rumble also appeared in Dreamwave's Transformers/G.I. Joe series, as one of the Decepticons allied with Cobra. Reconfigured with the alternate mode of a hand grenade, he was sent to help Cobra forces losing to Grimlock and Roadblock, quickly turning the tide of battle with his piledriver arms. He was defeated when Bumblebee and Scarlett were able to destroy his piledrivers with a hand grenade. Rumble was subsequently helpless when the ground around him, weakened by his earthquakes, collapsed into the sea. Not only does Rumble have an intense hatred of humans, calling them "meat", but he and Frenzy are described as brothers in this continuity as well.
Devil's Due Publishing
In the G.I. Joe vs. the Transformers comics printed by Devil's Due Publishing, Rumble was one of the Decepticons discovered by Cobra in the Ark, although they were reactivated later than the others. Frenzy was reprogrammed by Cobra Commander to follow his orders. Destro used a newly purchased Soundwave, Rumble, Frenzy, Ravage, Laserbeak and Ratbat along with stolen Cybertronian technology to attack a military base—only to be ambushed by the newly formed G.I. Joe.
There is an interesting art error here. Rumble appears to get shot through the eye and killed while under Destro's command, yet he is among the Decepticons who break free next issue (and is clearly identified as Rumble by Soundwave). This leads to the possibility that it was intended to be Frenzy, not Rumble, who was killed, and an art error led to their color schemes being mixed up. In any case, Rumble would soon be killed, crushed by Storm Shadow's S.N.A.K.E battlesuit while chasing Destro.
Rumble made his first appearance in the main IDW continuity in issue 1 of The Transformers: Megatron Origin miniseries, introduced as an energon miner; he already has his piledriver arms here, presumably for mining. Captured by the guard of the Senator after Megatron's riot at the energon mine, Rumble and Frenzy convinced the unwilling Megatron to help them escape. Breaking free (as the guards didn't know about his piledrivers) and incapacitating the guards, the three fugitives took the ship underground, unaware they had attracted the attention of Sentinel Prime. After getting involved in underground bloodsports in Kaon, Rumble and Frenzy have become awed by Megatron's violence and charisma, and have been shown as loyal acolytes staying by his side. After Soundwave offered Megatron the use of advanced weaponry, Rumble and Frenzy were modified to be able to work with him. This allowed them to be smuggled into the Senate, were they helped eradicate the senators, free the Decepticon prisoners, and raiding the armory.
Rumble appears in the Generations 2011 issue #2 "The Fierce Fighting on Planet Nebulos" where he is among the Decepticon forces who ambush the Autobots on Nebulos.
In the show Robot Chicken, a sketch is shown involving two meteorologists stumbling upon Soundwave, but they cannot take the obsolete stereo seriously as they take Rumble (in cassette mode) and mess around the film, killing Rumble.
- Generation 1 Rumble (1984)
- A cassette robot based on a Microman toy. Bundled with Ravage.
- Generation 2 Gobot Rumble (unreleased)
- An unreleased Go-Bot toy. This mold was later redecoed into Robots in Disguise Side Swipe and Universe Silverstreak.
- Alternators Rumble (2006)
- The first Alternator to be initially created as a Decepticon, Rumble now transforms into a Honda Civic Si. He retains his piledrivers in robot mode, and retains his original toy colors of red and black.
- Music Label Rumble & Frenzy (2008)
- Rumble and Frenzy transform into functional headphones that work with Music Label Soundwave or any portable media device.
- Reveal the Shield Scout Rumble (canceled)
- An all-new mold of Rumble, which transforms into a tank. The figure was among an entire wave of figures canceled from their international release, but it made its way into the Japanese United line.
- United UN-20 Scout Rumble & Frenzy (Takara Tomy) (2011)
- The Japanese version of the Reveal the Shield Rumble & Frenzy figures by Takara Tomy bundled in one package.
The Japanese name for the Decepticon Scrapmetal is Ramble, the Japanese name for Generation 1 Rumble. When the human Coby converts one of the Rambles into a mech body, he goes by the name Coby-Ramble, or Cobybot in the U.S.
According to an interview with producer Tom DeSanto published in issue #15 of the Transformers Collectors Club magazine, the original lineup pitched for the Decepticons in the live-action Transformers film was Megatron, Starscream, Soundwave, Ravage, Laserbeak, Rumble, Skywarp and Shockwave. Rumble did not make it to the final list; Frenzy did instead.
Rumble appears in Transformers: Nefarious #1, set months after the events of the 2009 film. He is depicted a blue robotic rhino minion of Soundwave.
This Rumble is an alternate good version of the Generation 1 character from the BotCon exclusive "Shattered Glass" comic, in which the Decepticons are on the side of good and the Autobots on the side of evil. Presumably like all Decepticons of his world, he is heroic and opposed to the evil Autobots.
Rumble appeared as a member of Megatron's forces in the "Shattered Glass" story. He was captured and set to be executed by the Autobots.
Rumble appears as one of Soundwave's Mini-Cons in the novel Transformers: Exodus.
In the 2010 video game Transformers: War for Cybertron, Rumble appears in the Autobot campaign, where Optimus Prime and his team must defeat Soundwave to save Zeta Prime. Rumble is one of Soundwave's minions alongside Laserbeak and Frenzy. As a reference to the original G1 incarnation, he uses the catch phrase, "First we crack the shell, then we crack the nuts inside!" once ejected into battle. The first phrase of his catch phrase "First we crack the shell" is also the name of an achievement/trophy. It involves the player getting smashed by Trypticon's hand as he falls down in Chapter 10.
In Fall of Cybertron;the sequel to War for Cybertron, Rumble once again appears as one of Soundwave's cassettes. While you play as Soundwave in the final level you can eject Laserbeak and Rumble to fight off the Autobots. He also pops up in the background throughout the game.
- Prime Revealer Deluxe Class Rumble (October 2012) While this version of Rumble is based on his original G1 self, this Rumble transforms into a blue boy racer, resembling a Honda Civic or a Volkswagen Golf coupe.
Fall Of Cybertron Rumble with Ravage(Early 2013) Can eject from Soundwave or Soundblaster
- The animated movie guide, Page 289, by Jerry Beck, 2005
- Seibertron.com - Rumble
- Furman, Simon (2004). Transformers: The Ultimate Guide. DK Publishing Inc. p. 28. ISBN 1-4053-0461-8. Search this book on
- Classic Transformers: Volume 1, Page 57, by Justin Eisinger, Bob Budianski, Andrew Steven Harris, 2008
- http://www.x-entertainment.com/articles/0773/[permanent dead link]
- Simon Furman (w), Guido Guidi (p). "Generations 2011" The Fierce Fighting on Planet Nebulos 2 (2011), Japan: Takara Tomy
- Schroeder's collectible toys antique to modern price guide by Bob Huxford, Sharon Huxford, 1995
- TFW2005.com - Music Label Rumble & Frenzy
- TFW2005.com - United Frenzy and Rumble Images
- Figure King Magazine, March 2011, page 129
- Alexander C. Irvine (2010). Transformers: Exodus - The Official History of the War for Cybertron. Del Rey Books. ISBN 978-0-345-52252-8. Search this book on
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