Punch/Counterpunch is a fictional character from the Transformers series introduced in 1987, a Transformer with dual identities: the Autobot side Punch and the Decepticon persona Counterpunch.
Transformers: Generation 1
Punch is a heroic Autobot. Is also is the evil Decepticon Counterpunch. He sometimes forms part of the Wreckage combiner.
Generation 1: Punch, the Autobot, transforms into Counterpunch, the Decepticon, to infiltrate enemy installations. Cool-headed, a robot of few words, reveals little of his true self to either side. Maximum car mode speed: 160 mph. Uses twin mortar launcher in Autobot mode, photon cannon in Decepticon mode.
Timelines: As the explosions roar and laser bursts slam into armor plating, Punch remains cool and aloof. It's a characteristic that his fellow Autobots envy during this time of war. However, buried in his processors deep below this false aura of composure, lurks a rampant paranoia with which the Autobot spy is in constant conflict. Recently this paranoia has become so intense that when in infiltration mode, Punch has started to black out due to immense fear. When he reboots he finds that he has no recollection of how he has completed the mission, but is always thankful that his Counterpunch persona has seemingly pursued the objective on its own.
Generations:The double spy known as both PUNCH and COUNTERPUNCH had been deep undercover for so long, even he had begun to question his true allegiance. After millions of years, the false history of his undercover persona had been burned into his datatracks, becoming indistinguishable from his true memories. Eventually, PUNCH and COUNTERPUNCH had each come to believe that the other was a disguise. After a ruthless squad of Decepticons discovered his dual identities during a raid on an Autobot base, he was savagely beaten, labeled a traitor, and left to rust. However, thanks to a talented medic from the planet Paradron, he was saved. But only by removing the damaged components of his PUNCH form—including the barriers between PUNCH and COUNTERPUNCH’s mental processes. Reborn as a single entity, COUNTERPUNCH seeks to uncover the truth of an identity hidden within two conflicting sets of memories. His brutality has been tempered by a constant struggle between the Decepticon he thinks he is, and the Autobot he thinks he may be.
Punch’s only appearance in the original Transformers animated series was in "The Rebirth", the three-part story comprising the entirety of the show's fourth and final season. His minimal screen time prevented any use of his split-personality characterization within the series. When the Decepticons attacked Autobot City in 2007, Punch spotted the Decepticon Clones breaking into the city under cover of the firefight; donning his Counterpunch guise, he followed them in under the pretense that Galvatron had requested he check up on their progress. When the clones rebuffed his aid, he told them to watch out for his Autobot counterpart, and left... promptly switching back to Punch and attacking them. The clones double-teamed him and he was mauled by Pounce and knocked unconscious, allowing them to steal the object of their mission – the key to the Plasma Energy Chamber. The key was subsequently used to open the chamber briefly, and the energy released blasted it and a group of Autobots across the galaxy, but, unaware of this, Optimus Prime ordered Punch and the Autobot Clones to scour Cybertron for the key, only to have them report back unsuccessfully a short time thereafter.
Punch got much more screen time, however, in Transformers: Headmasters, the Japanese-exclusive animated series that supplanted "The Rebirth"'s position in continuity on the other side of the Pacific. In this series, Punch's function as a double agent was his key role, as he frequently brought the Autobots essential information on the Decepticons' plans from within their camp. However, he lacked the split-personality of his American biography, and was an Autobot through-and-through, even occasionally forgetting to switch modes or taking on the wrong one at a given time, and displaying only the most rudimentary ability to dupe and bluff others.
When Punch first appeared, it was clear he had already established himself within the Decepticon camp as he reported to Fortress about Scorponok's plans for a coronation on Earth's moon. Later, when the Autobots picked up an SOS signal from the planet Sandra, he alerted them to the fact that the Decepticons had done the same.
When Galvatron apparently agreed to attend peace talks with Spike Witwicky, Counterpunch was shocked to discover that the Decepticon leader was still on Chaar while he appeared to be on Earth at the same time. After Punch alerted the Autobots, it was revealed that Sixshot was masquerading as the Decepticon leader on Earth, thereby preventing the Decepticons from getting too extensive a head start on their plan to plunder other planets of their energy. Accompanying the Decepticons into space as Counterpunch, Punch was later able to inform the Autobots of the location of a Battle Beast on the planet Darhos who had information on Scorponok's weak spot.
Soon thereafter, with both factions back on Earth, Punch was appointed the task of finding out what Galvatron planned for the energy stolen from the various planets. Only just managing to bluff his way out of an awkward conversation with Galvatron, he soon resorted to the most basic of spying techniques – listening through an air vent as Galvatron revealed his plan to merge his body with the Earth itself. The Decepticon leader also voiced the fact that his head was his weakest point, and with this information, the Autobot Headmasters were able to defeat him.
Punch later reported on Scorponok's ascension to the position of Decepticon emperor, but when the Decepticons returned to Earth after a trip to Planet Master, Punch was left with no information to give – after Punch had disembarked Scorponok, the massive Decepticon had vanished before he could even turn around. Subsequently, however, he was able to report on Scorponok's movements across the globe, though he was not in evidence at the final battle at the North Pole.
Counterpunch combines with his fellow Wreckers to form Wreckage.
Counterpunch was announced as a member of the fifth Transformers Subscription Service at BotCon 2016.
Punch/Counterpunch's Classics counterpart later appeared in Transformers: Timelines, where the split personality feature of his American bio was taken to new heights. A Cybertronian who was discovered to have a rare Transformation cog capable of allowing him two robot modes, he is an enigma in that both his Punch and Counterpunch identities believe themselves to be the true personality in charge of their body while believing the other to be an act created to fool the Decepticons or Autobots, respectively.
In the text story "Truth We Make", Counterpunch attempts to commandeer their body and convince Punch that he is a falsehood, and that his past as an actor in the city of Harmonex is pure fiction, such a city never even having existed. He also commandeers Punch's body for a time, leading to his eventual arrest by the Autobots Suppressor and Firecracker after his role in the destruction of Athenia. However, this proves to be part of a gambit to bring fellow Decepticons Crash Test, Killswitch, Wind Sheer, Skyfire, and Rotorbolt into the base from which Punch has been operating.
Despite Counterpunch "killing" Punch in a dreamlike encounter, Punch later seizes control of their body and attacks the Decepticons, only to be badly damaged and left for dead. Recovered by Impactor, the two are repaired on Paradron by a process that removes most of the Punch components but leaves the resulting Counterpunch uncertain of his true identity. Adding to his confusion, Impactor recalls the supposedly fictional city of Harmonex, and in fact had been there. Counterpunch was then recruited to join a motley new crew of Wreckers, forming a limb of the Combiner Wreckage.
- Generation 1 C-111 Punch/Counterpunch (1987)
- A new mold. Turns from one robot into another robot or car.
- Timelines Deluxe Punch/Counterpunch (2010)
- A remold of Universe Deluxe Sideswipe. A Transformers Collectors Club exclusive.
- Generations Combiner Wars Deluxe Counterpunch (2017)
- A remold and recolor of Generations Combiner Wars Deluxe Wheeljack. Turns from robot to car or becomes a limb of a Combiner Wars style combiner. Comes with a sword and hand/foot/gun. Part of the fifth Transformers Subscription Service collection.
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