Challenge of the GoBots

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Challenge of the GoBots
Challenge of the GoBots.jpg
Directed by Ray Patterson (Supervising)
Arthur Davis
Oscar Dufau
Volus Jones
Don Lusk
Rudy Zamora
Alan Zaslove
Starring Lou Richards
Arthur Burghardt
Frank Welker
Bernard Erhard
Bob Holt
Marilyn Lightstone
Sparky Marcus
Leslie Speights
Morgan Paull
Phil Hartman
B.J. Ward
Brock Peters
Peter Cullen
Country of origin United States
No. of episodes 65
Executive producer(s) William Hanna
Joseph Barbera
Joe Taritero
Patrick S. Feely
Producer(s) Kay Wright
Lois Hanrahan
Running time 30 minutes
Production company(s) Hanna-Barbera Productions
Original channel First-run syndication
Original airing October 29, 1984
September 16, 1985
(regular series)

Challenge of the GoBots, or GoBots: Mighty Robots, Mighty Vehicles, is an American animated series produced by Hanna-Barbera, based on the Gobots toy-line released from Tonka.[1][2] The show originally debuted in animated form as a five-part miniseries, which aired in syndication from October 29 - November 2, 1984. A regular series followed the next year, premiering on September 16, 1985 as part of the new weekday/weekend morning programming block called The Funtastic World of Hanna-Barbera. The series was later rerun on the USA Cartoon Express.


GoBots dealt with two opposing forces of transforming robots from the planet GoBotron: the heroic Guardians and the evil Renegades. The Guardians were led by Leader-1 while the Renegades were led by Cy-Kill. The characters rarely had guns, instead shooting energy blasts out of their fists. The female robots on the series, such as Crasher, were built like the males, but with some distinguishing female features. The GoBots' origin as organic beings accounted for the presence of genders among the robots.[3]

The series generally focused on a small number of robots from each faction (Leader-1, Turbo, Small Foot and Scooter vs. Cy-Kill, Fitor, Cop-Tur and Crasher), who were virtually ever-present, with other characters seeming to rotate in "guest-star" roles. GoBots had no clear divide between the two factions. The characters (as well as the toys) had no identifying insignias or markings to indicate their allegiance, although it was clearly indicated on the packaging. Likewise, there was no commonality of design within each faction. The only 'theme' to a side was that anything that turned into a 'monstrous'-looking robot or vehicle was a Renegade. Clips from the show were used in Errol Morris's Fast, Cheap and Out of Control.[4]


In the series' backstory, set thousands of years ago on the planet GoBotron, there lived a race of human-like beings known as GoBings. Civil war erupted on the planet when the power-hungry terrorist group known as the Renegades arose, led by a madman dubbed the "Master Renegade", who waged war against the peaceful Guardians. When a Renegade sabotage operation inadvertently resulted in a gigantic asteroid colliding with GoBotron, the natural disasters that resulted from the asteroid's impact pushed the GoBings to the verge of extinction. However, the genius who became known as the "Last Engineer" saved his people, taking his experiments to replace parts of his own body with mechanical substitutes to the ultimate extent and transferring the GoBings brains into large robot bodies known as "GoBots". The GoBot forms possessed an additional ability; after being run through the device named the Modifier, the GoBots' bodies were able to transform into other vehicles. His work done, the Last Engineer intended to retreat to a pre-prepared workshop elsewhere in the galaxy, but the Master Renegade stole his ship and escaped in his stead. The Last Engineer placed himself into suspended animation beneath the surface of GoBotron, while above, the war continued to rage between the Guardians and the Renegades, now all encased in GoBot shells.

In the last quarter of the 20th Century, the planet Earth became involved in the conflict between Leader-1's Guardians and Cy-Kill's Renegades. During one of these battles, one of Leader-1's lieutenants, Turbo, became severely damaged. Unwilling to let his friend and teammate die, Leader-1 began his quest to find the legendary Last Engineer. Leader-1 found the person he believed to be the Last Engineer, but Leader-1 had unwittingly released the Master Renegade (though he did repair Turbo to gain the Guardians' trust). The Guardians later found the true Last Engineer, who was instrumental in frustrating the alliance between Cy-Kill's Renegades and the Master Renegade. The Master Renegade later escaped the custody of the Renegades, and plagued both factions, notably attacking the UniCom colony of New Earth.



  1. Battle for GoBotron (1)-
  2. Target Earth (2)-
  3. Conquest of Earth (3)-
  4. Earth Bound (4)-
  5. The Final Conflict (5)-
  6. It's the Thought That Counts -
  7. Renegade Alliance -
  8. Time Wars -
  9. Terror in Atlantis -
  10. Trident's Triple Threat -
  11. Lost on GoBotron -
  12. Cy-Kill's Shrinking Ray -
  13. The Quest for Roguestar -
  14. Ultra Zod -
  15. Sentinel -
  16. Cy-Kill's Cataclysmic Trap -
  17. Speed is of the Essence -
  18. Genius and Son -
  19. Dawn World -
  20. Pacific Overtures -
  21. Forced Alliance -
  22. Invasion from the 21st Level Pt. 1 -
  23. Invasion from the 21st Level Pt. 2 -
  24. Doppelganger -
  25. Scooter Enhanced -
  26. Tarnished Image -
  27. Cold Spell -
  28. Crime Wave -
  29. Auto-madic -
  30. Renegade Rampage Pt. 1 -
  31. Renegade Rampage Pt. 2 -
  32. Search for the Ancient Gobonauts -
  33. Gameworld -
  34. Wolf in the Fold -
  35. Depth Charge -
  36. Transfer Point -
  37. Steamer's Defection -
  38. The GoBot Who Cried Renegade -
  39. The Seer -
  40. Whiz Kid -
  41. Ring of Fire -
  42. Cy-Kills Escape (1)-
  43. Quest for the Creator (2)-
  44. The Fall of GoBotron (3)-
  45. Flight to Earth (4)-
  46. Return to GoBotron (5)-
  47. Destroy All Guardians -
  48. Escape from Elba -
  49. Fitor to the Finish -
  50. Clutch of Doom -
  51. The Third Column -
  52. A New Suit for Leader-1 -
  53. Renegade Carnival -
  54. The Gift -
  55. Nova Beam -
  56. The Last Magic Man -
  57. Braxis Gone Bonkers -
  58. Inside Job -
  59. Element of Danger -
  60. Mission: GoBotron -
  61. Et Tu Cy-Kill? -
  62. The GoBots That Time Forgot -
  63. The Secret of Halley's Comet -
  64. Guardian Academy -
  65. Quest for New Earth -


Production credits[edit]

DVD releases[edit]

On May 17, 2011, Warner Archive released Challenge of the GoBots - The Original Mini-Series on DVD in region 1 as part of their Hanna–Barbera Classics Collection.[5][6] This is a Manufacture-on-Demand (MOD) release, available exclusively through Warner's online store and[7]

On May 6, 2014, Warner Archive released Challenge of the GoBots- The Series, Volume 1 on DVD in Region 1.[8] The 3-disc set features the first 30 episodes of the series.


The Japan-made cartoon Machine Robo: Revenge of Cronos was released in France as a sequel to the American series. The show was dubbed to take place in the future and Fitor, Screwhead, and Cy-Kill have reformed.

A big-screen version of the series Gobots: Battle of the Rock Lords was released in 1986, one month before The Transformers: The Movie.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Solomon, Charles (March 21, 1986). "3 Animated Films: Good, Bad, Ugly". LA Times. Retrieved 2010-09-06. 
  2. ^ Robots take control of boys' market; manufacturers, retailers look for ways to keep category on right track. Playthings; November 1, 1985; by Gilligan, Eugene
  3. ^ "Living: Hot Toys with a Special Twist". Time. October 1, 1984. Retrieved 2010-09-06. 
  4. ^ Bellomo, Mark (2010). Totally Tubular '80s. Krause Publications. p. 90=93. ISBN 1-4402-1282-1. 
  5. ^ "Challenge Of The Gobots: The Original Miniseries : DVD Talk Review of the DVD Video". Retrieved 2012-10-20. 
  6. ^ "Challenge of the GoBots DVD Review - IGN". 2011-06-09. Retrieved 2012-10-20. 
  7. ^ "Challenge of the GoBots - Date, Cost and More for WAC's DVD of 'The Original Mini-Series'". 
  8. ^ 'The Series, Volume 1' DVD Release Announced

External links[edit]