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How Michael Bay's first Transformers film ruined an epic Megatron cameo in Bumblebee

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Dec 20, 2018, 9:48 AM EST

Bumblebee, besides being the first Transformers movie to be critically-acclaimed since...well, forever, has also made many fans newly optimistic about a franchise dominated by a vision set by director Michael Bay. With Travis Knight at the helm of Bumblebee (and potentially its sequel depending on its box office numbers and the director’s availability), the new Transformers universe has raised plenty of questions — one of which being “How does Bumblebee fit in with the other films’ continuity?” Thanks to the absence of one famous robot, fans now have their answer.

Bumblebee includes a scene set on Cybertron, the Transformers’ home planet. It shows off plenty of G1 (based on the first iteration of toys) Autobots and Decepticons while displaying a world fans have only seen snippets of in the franchise’s modern-day movies. But there was no archvillain. There was no Megatron.

According to io9, that’s because Knight wanted to stick within the Bay-verse. "I had this whole thing boarded where we’re where we see Megatron and he comes in like Sauron, just blowing s**t up and laying waste to everything," he said. "However, we then realized in this world, Megatron is currently frozen on Earth, as seen in 2007's Transformers, so that was out."

Megatron exists in the world of Bumblebee...he’s just frozen over at the Hoover Dam, where he was moved to after his discovery in the Arctic Circle back in the 1800s by Shia LaBeouf's great-great-grandfather. The original Transformers movies are weird, ok?

“So even though I really wanted to see G1 Megatron on the battlefield at the fall of Cybertron, I couldn’t do it,” Knight explained. “But I wanted to fit as much of this G1 stuff I loved in there, and so I put my favorite characters in.” Pushing these boundaries without rewriting history means that the creative team is still eyeing this franchise as one with a future — so don’t be surprised if Knight’s continuity scrutiny comes into play sooner rather than later.

Fans can fail to see Megatron themselves when Bumblebee opens Dec. 21.