Way back in 1985 The animated cartoon The Transformers introduce an all female squad of Autobots (it is heavily suspected that they were trying hard to bring in girls to watch the show) The problem is that Hasbro did not make any toys initially or they would have really brought in the girls…
These females were:
- Elita One: Leader, former girlfriend of Optimus Prime (I did not make this up). Her original name was Ariel. Transforms into a Cybertronian pink race car.
- Chromia: Second in command, tough as nails. Transforms in a light blue Cybertronian min-van (again I do not make this stuff up)
- Firestar: Soldier, practical and unprepossessing. Transforms into a red Cybertronian El Camino (I couldn’t make this up if I tried!)
- Greenlight: She was not given a name until 25 years later and it is unknown what she transforms into but she is Green (green = greenlight…. do not know what to say)
- Lancer: She shared the same fate as Greenlight, she was unnamed for 25 years, with unknown alternate mode and she was orange with purple.
- Moonracer: She was the bubbly little sister type and transformed into a light teal colored Cybertronian sports car.
Created for the 1986 The Transformers: The Movie:
- Arcee: A pink and white female soldier , She did not make it into the comic book but in the cartoon she became a headmaster with Daniel Witwicky as her human partner. She was also Beast Wars Rattrap‘s “great-aunt”. (I ain’t lying to you, just reporting the facts) She was not given a decent toy until 28 years had passed. In 2014 she finally got a fantastic G1 inspired toy. (I am proud to have bought her and she stands among other re-imagined transformers from the movie.)
In 1996 the Beast Wars saw two female transformers:
- Airazor: She transforms into realistic looking falcon in brown and yellow and her robot mode looks female. (I have this toy but Rhinox on the same shelf fell over and broke her leg off, the part is still missing, I found her gun across the room)
- Blackarachnia: She turns into a black widow spider. Her toy mode does not look female at all and it was not until a bit later that she got a female looking toy in the Transmetal sub-line in 1999 and then in 2000 as part of the Beastmachines line she got one of the most impressive and gorgeous looking toys I have ever seen (I had to have this toy, she really is wonderful looking.)
In 2007 Transformers Animated reintroduced two old favorites to us and some new females as well:
- Blackarachnia: similar in look to her Beastwars counterpart but different enough to be her own bot. She was originally Elita-1 (it is unknown if she was Opimus’s girlfriend in this alternate reality) but she was bit by a spider and she became one. She transforms into a black widow spider in purple, black and gold. Her toy is very female looking and very stunning (I have this one and I am very happy with her)
- Arcee: She transforms into a magenta and white Cybertronic “rocket car,” (notable as the first version of the toy that actually looks like the original Arcee’s character in both robot and car but since she is not that character it really does not count)
- Strika: transforms into a multi-wheeled heavily armored battle tank and she is very chunky so to speak and her toy is exactly like her appearance. She is the consort of Lugnut (again, I could not make this stuff up if I tried!)
- Red Alert: She transforms into a red and white Cybertronian ambulance. She was suppose to be Ratchet in the series but was changed during the creative process and later included with a new name (Ironically Ratchet was suppose to be female in the original G1 comic but was switched as well)
- Sliptream: a female seeker that is a clone of Starscream. She is purple and teal. Each of the clones represent one of Starscream‘s personality aspects although it was never been told which one and it was on purpose (fans repeatedly ask to the annoyance of her creators)
2009 live action film Revenge of the Fallen gave us three different beings, one old favorite and one new and the third who is an homage to another character but never made it into the film.
- Arcee: She is back but she does not look like her old self at all, she turns into a motorcycle, or I should say three motorcycles. Although not mentioned in the film sources have identified the three as Arcee, Chromia, and Elita-One (Elita-One has also been named Flareup with a separate toy)
- Alice: This character is a take on the pretender sub-line of G1. She aggressively goes after Sam then tries to kill him and transforms from stunning human female to transformer decepticon war machine.
- Fracture: A Wal-Mart exclusive redeco of Classics Mirage (a Formula racer concept car), extensively painted to resemble the GoBots character Crasher, right down to her pink face and black “domino mask” from the cartoon.
2012: Transformers Prime brought back two favorites:
- Airachnid: Based on Blackarachnia and just as evil, she transforms into a helicopter and she can employ her helicopter blades as spider legs while in her robot mode.
- Arcee: This time around she is blue and a motorcycle.
2014: IDW publishing turned out a few different females:
Windblade: the first officially fan-created Transformer ever, the result of Hasbro‘s “Fan-Built Bot” initiative program that had two polls on Hasbro‘s official website. fans helped determine her character and some of her physical traits (her Japanese motifs weren’t an option but a choice by the design team).
Nautica: Although she did not get a toy she was still in the comics, she turns into a purple submarine.
Chromia: 29 years later and she is back with a decent toy. Although her robot mode is similar she was given the form of a Cybertronian canopied motorcycle.
2015: Transformers: Robots in Disguise brought out a new female character:
- Strongarm: Transforms into a blue and white police car, she is new to the job and looks up to Bumblebee.
So we come to the end, Transformers has always been a boys toy, it has been mostly focused for boys, but occasionally we see a girl get in there and the love for these girls endures, I for one hope to see more in the coming years. (I have missed the odd one here or there but I covered the main ones)