I just watched the episode "Darkest Hour," the finale to Transformers Prime's second season. And at the end, all I can say is "What?" Immediately following that, I began to cry and curl up in a little ball, hugging my stuffed Eeyore like he would suddenly run away from me.
'Cause, you know, Peter Cullen voiced him too.
This episode was amazing, but it pretty much horrified me. The writers said that anyone who dies in the series would remain dead, and it scares me to know that Optimus may not come back. I know that Optimus is "just a fictional character," as many of my non-Transformers friends have told me before, but he really isn't. He, the Autobots, and (in my opinion) Peter himself stand for hope, freedom, and love. With Optimus gone and Team Prime split up, I feel pretty numb.
This episode has also made me think about Peter Cullen himself. I think it's because I sometimes have a hard time separating voice actors from their characters, and so when Optimus died, it felt a little like Peter died as well for me. This made the episode easily twenty times harder to watch.
At this year's BotCon, I was lucky enough to be at the Peter Cullen panel. And I'm glad I was. The things he said will stick with me for the rest of my life. Just some of the advice he gave there: "Don't give up. Success is measured by how far you bounce back after you hit rock bottom. Never give up on your friends, never give up on your country, and most importantly, never give up on yourself." I remembered this when I felt like giving up at university because it felt like no one cared about me, like if I fell off the face of the Earth that no one would even notice. But I remembered this and realized that even if he never really knew I existed, that he most likely wouldn't want me to quit school just because I was having a rough time. And because of this, I am still getting a quality education at my university.
Peter, if you're reading this, I want to thank you. Thank you from the very bottom of my heart. You're a class act and truly have a beautiful soul. I have nothing but tremendous respect for you. All the best to you and your family. Thank you.