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- 1 Beast Wars
- 2 Transformers: Universe (2003)
- 3 Transformers: Universe (2005)
- 4 Transformers: Cybertron
- 5 Transformers: Generation 1
- 6 Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen
- 7 References
The original Tankor started out as Rhinox, a character from the Beast Wars television series. He first appears in Beast Wars as Rhinox, but later becomes Tankor in Beast Machines. Rhinox transforms into a Rhinoceros, as Tankor he turns into a Cybertronian Tank.
As Tankor, he is a Vehicon General who was in charge of the Tank Drones. His tech specs portray his unintelligence as a ruse he uses to make his enemies underestimate him. Tankor's motto is word for word the same as that used on the Generation 1 Dinobot Grimlock, but he seems to have more of a connection to The Incredible Hulk.
Unfortunately for the Maximals, Megatron broke free of his bonds in transwarp and arrived on Cybertron ahead of them, taking over the planet. When the Maximal survivors inside the Autobot shuttle reached Cybertron, it was shot down by Megatron's forces and landed on the planet. The Maximals were chased by Megatron's Vehicon drones, who threw canisters of Megatron's transformation-freezing virus at them. All those Maximals whose bodies had been altered during the Beast Wars were transformed back to their original bodies and frozen in their beast modes. Rhinox and Silverbolt, however, had their sparks captured by Megatron.
Megatron used Rhinox's spark to give life to one of the original three Vehicon generals: Tankor. As Tankor, Rhinox was a simple-minded powerhouse who never felt any emotions other than rage. His spark remained dormant inside of Tankor for some time, conscious and aware, but never capable of reaching the surface. It wasn't long before Cheetor and Rattrap discovered that their former comrade was trapped inside the technological titan.
Each of the three original Vehicon Generals had their own personalized command codes; Tankor's was: "Tankor Pulverize!!!"
In one episode, Optimus Primal, still unaware of Tankor's prior identity, used his spark telepathy to convince Tankor that Megatron was his enemy, and to join the Maximals. Megatron countered by deleting Tankor's memories of the events and blocking any further attempts to contact Tankor's mind (Mercenary Pursuits).
After the Maximal Rattrap attempted to interface Tankor's CPU, Tankor regained the blocked memories of his time as Rhinox. Optimus Primal chose not to forcibly undo Megatron's Vehicon reprogramming of him in fear that would make the Maximals no better than Megatron. This proved to be a mistake as Tankor remained with the Vehicons, now with Rhinox's genius and memories. Tankor hid the new knowledge of his identity from his fellow Vehicons, and continued to act like the old Tankor in their presence.
While Tankor agreed with Megatron's ideal Cyberton, he saw the partially organic Megatron as unfit to lead it, preferring himself as its ideal leader given his pure technological make-up and his experiences as both Maximal and Vehicon (Rhinox expressed a similar view when he was reprogrammed as a Predacon in the Beast Wars Series) and planned to overthrow Megatron. Tankor reprogrammed the Diagnostic Drone to only obey him so it could retrieve the Key to Vector Sigma, which could purge all organics from Cybertron, like the Maximals. Then he manipulated the Oracle to send false visions to Optimus so that the Maximals would find the Plasma Energy Chamber and use it to destroy Megatron. Tankor was killed at the end of the first season of Beast Machines when he was going to destroy Megatron but it was revealed that all Vehicons were hard-wire programmed with fail-safes that prevent them from harming Megatron. It was revealed that Megatron knew of his deception all along. When he was killed, Tankor became Rhinox again and rejoined the Matrix, forgiven for his crimes as Tankor.
In the US he was voiced by Paul Dobson prior to the re-awakening of his prior memories. After that, he was voiced by Richard Newman using Rhinox's old voice, although on occasion he used his Tankor voice to deceive the Vehicons.
According to DVD commentary by Bob Skir, Tankor's character was influenced by the Incredible Hulk.
Tankor would make a very surprising cameo appearance in Dreamwave's Transformers: Armada Comic. With Optimus Prime having disappeared to an alternate dimension devastated by Unicron. As Jetfire attempted to locate him through Spacebridge links to other dimensions, one of these clearly shows Tankor.
Tankor appeared in the 2006 TransformersCon voice actor play. Voices in the play were performed by a variety of volunteers and the actual voice actors attending the convention. In this play various Transformers from different timelines and realities were swept up in a repeat wave and transported along with Unicron to Earth. The Transformers included the original Tracks, Ariel, Cosmos and Megatron, Beast Wars Tarantulas, Robots in Disguise Sky-Byte and Beast Machines Tankor. Eventually the Transformers were able to learn that the death of Unicron in 2005 was what created the repeat wave. They defeated Unicron by tricking him into transforming and using up his power, then using the Key to Vector Sigma program (which Tankor had brought with him) to tap into the power of Vector Sigma itself, and through it the Autobot Matrix of Leadership. With Unicron severely drained the various Transformers faded back to their original timelines. Before returning to his timeline Tankor thanked his Autobot ancestors, telling them it was an honor to work with them.
- Beast Machines Tankor (2000)
- Like many of the Beast Machines figures, the toy of Tankor bore only as passing resemblance to the animation model on the television series. Furthermore, though the toy was named "Tankor" and said so on its box; the instructions oddly misspell his name as "Tankorr." A later toy meant to represent the Tank-Drones resembled Tankor's animated incarnation more closely.
- Beast Machines Happy Meal Tankor
- There was also a Happy Meal toy of Tankor available from McDonalds which resembled his appearance on the series. In some countries this figure was released in different colors.
- Beast Wars Returns Tankor
- In the series, Tankor and his Drones looked identical. In Japan, the Tankor mold was altered to more closely resemble Tankor's show appearance.
Transformers: Universe (2003)
A veritable powerhouse, Tankor is one of the strongest of Unicron's evil generals. Unfortunately, he is also the dumbest. Has a unique partnership with his fellow Decepticon, Obsidian. Serves as the muscle in this deadly duo and will instantly flatten any enemy who choose to ignorantly cross his path. His sole purpose is to demolish everything and anything that stand's in his master's way. Served the Predacon leader-turned Cybertron despot, Megatron, before overthrowing him at the bidding of his partner, Obsidian. After being transported away to the farthest reaches of the universe to do Unicron's bidding, he was easily convinced to serve his new, more powerful master, Tankor utilizes all of his awesome weaponry to keep dissidents in line. He wields a flamethrower in tank mode, while head mounted energy lasers top off an assortment of heavy weaponry in robot mode. He heavily relies upon his partner for guidance and instruction. Separating him from Obsidian, who serves as the brain to his brawn, is the most effective way of taking advantage of his low intelligence and thus besting this formidable opponent.
Although 3H Enterprises losing the license would forestall the conclusion to the Universe storyline, an explanation of sorts would be found in issue 8 of the Transformers Collectors Club magazine Cybertron/Robots in Disguise, where Optimus Prime told the tale of how Unicron's forces were defeated in one last battle by Optimus Primal's forces, as Unicron disappeared due to the black hole opened in Transformers: Energon. Here Tankor returned as a Decepticon in the ranks of Unicron’s army. According to his tech spec and appearances in the comic book series, this was a Tankor from a parallel universe were Tankor never recovered his memory and so was not killed. Apparently Jetstorm was restored as Silverbolt for there was also an Obsidian, but no Strika because Tankor was still active. Obsidian therefore made Tankor his new partner and together they overthrew Megatron and ruled Cybertron themselves. Unicron, impressed by their ruthlessness, abducted them from their own dimension. Impressed in turn by Unicron's massive power, the two agreed and became his servants.
This Tankor more closely resembled the Tankor toy than the CGI Tankor. He has massive firepower and durability, but he still relies on Obsidian as the brains of their partnership. In the final battle between Unicron's Army and The Children of Primus,
Tankor was bested by a surprising foe - Rhinox, resurrected by Optimus Primal as his lieutenant, giving Rhinox a chance to face his darkest demon, Tankor.
- Universe Tankor with Obsidian
- Recolors of the Beast Machines toys.
Transformers: Universe (2005)
The name of Tankor was used again in Transformers: Universe as a Micromaster Autobot who turned into a locomotive, and was part of a US release of the Japanese Sixliner team. He has not appeared in any official fiction.
According to the story with Sixtrain Red Mode, the Sixtrain turns red and becomes more powerful when empowered by a piece of the Maxtix.
- Universe Micromaster Tankor (2005)
- He is a recolor of the original Micromasters Alan and Altan. Tankor came with the head and rifle for Rail Racer.
- The Micromaster Railbots were released in Cybertron packaging in European countries, as they didn't have the Transformers: Universe line.
The name was used yet again in the Transformers: Cybertron line as a Mini-Con aligned with the Autobots who turned into a tank. He was a repaint of the Mini-Con Wreckage. He came packaged with Cybertron Shockwave. Neither has appeared in any official fiction.
After the Unicron Battles, many Mini-Con choose to remain on Earth in hiding and separate from the ongoing conflict between the Autobots and Decepticons. Tankor, with other Mini-Cons, hid among the armed forces of Earth so that they could protect the humans from Shockwave and the Sky Attack Team. The desire to protect human life is nearly an obsession for Tankor; he exists solely to prevent the damage inflicted by Shockwave and his aerial companions. The return of the Transformers to Earth has forced them once again to take sides in a larger conflict.
- Cybertron Tankor (2005)
- Shockwave and Tankor were included with the Decepticon Mudflap as a promotional item at Target Stores in 2006.
Transformers: Generation 1
Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen
Little is known about this Decepticon. His colors are a homage to Beast Machines Tankor.
Tankor attacked the Alamo, and was countered by a team of Autobots including Rollbar.
- Revenge of the Fallen Legends Tankor (2009)
- This Legends-only toy is a Decepticon and a recolor of Brawl.