Autobot Prowl shooting a weapon on a spaceship in The Transformers animated series
Movies - TV
Why The Transformers Movies Left Out A Famous Classic Autobot
The Autobot Prowl has yet to appear in a “Transformers” film, despite a consistent presence in the comics and cartoons, because of a creative decision in 2007’s “Transformers.”
Part of the original 1984 toy line now known as “Generation One,” Prowl transformed into a police car and had one of the most striking character designs of the Autobots.
Prowl was a huge player in the contemporaneous Marvel comics written by Bob Budiansky, and he even assumed command of the Autobots after Optimus Prime was incapacitated.
A Transformer with a police car vehicle mode does appear in the “Transformers” movies — but it's not Prowl, and that redundancy is the reason for his absence.
In a 2007 post on, “Transformers” co-writer Roberto Orci revealed he and co-writer Alex Kurtzman opted for another character similar to Prowl instead.
Orci wrote, “A Decepticon in disguise as a police vehicle was too good to pass up for ‘TF-1,’ so no Prowl in this one.” This Decepticon transformed into a Ford Mustang police car.
The Police Car Decepticon was ultimately named Barricade, and during his debut in the 2007 “Transformers,” he’s last seen chasing the Autobots down a highway before disappearing.
The mysterious vanishing of Barricade made him very popular, as fans were left to speculate about his fate, and it prompted his return in “Dark of the Moon” and “The Last Knight.”
Barricade’s enduring presence in the movies means that Prowl's redundancy also remains. There’s no need to have two characters transform into the same car and confuse audiences.