Bumblebee appears to mark a shift in tone for the Transformers movies. It looks more light-hearted and kid-friendly. The titular Autobot star, a playful mute who speaks through radio soundbites, embodies the qualities of a loyal puppy more than it does an intergalactic hero.
But this is still Transformers, and the latest Bumblebee trailer recognizes that. Familiar robo-faces from both sides of the Autobot/Decepticon conflict pop up here, including a brief appearance by Optimus Prime himself.
A string of underwhelming movies has left Transformers with an image problem. Bumblebee shifts course, embracing the vibe of ’80s and ’90s kid-befriends-alien-thing classics like Batteries Not Included, Flight of the Navigator, and (of course) E.T.
It’s definitely winning us over.