Tear Jerker / Transformers Armada

  • All of Starscream's inner-thoughts in "Crisis". He didn't want to harm the earth and he didn't want to fight Optimus. By the end of the episode, his former human friends were nearly wiped out and he's at least partially responsible for the death of Optimus. Looks like no matter which universe you're in, it sucks to be Screamer.
  • Starscream's suicide-by-Megatron. It wasn't Dinobot levels of dramatic, but it was getting there. Their last talk certainly helps bring on the water-works.
    Starscream: I tried to gain favor from you. But nothing was ever good enough. No matter how many battles I fought, you always found fault. Then I saw how Optimus treated his men, and I realized he was a leader of integrity. Unlike you.
    Starscream: None of that matters now. You must listen, do as Optimus says and join forces with the Autobots, or else every last one of us is doomed! Please sir... do it for me...
    • Just to drive home the tragedy here, in the Japanese version, it's more clear that Starscream turns off his sword and that he allowed Megatron to finish him to make the point that infighting was pointless. Made even WORSE that prior to this in the Japanese dub, Starscream called Galvatron the "ultimate fighter". It certainly seems Starscream could've won the duel, but sacrificed himself for the greater good.
    • That wasn't even the most heartbreaking part. The worst part is when they inform the children, and seeing their individual reactions Especially Alexis. I BAWLED.
    • How about the way Starscream's Minicon partner Swindle (who Starscream ejected so he wouldn't share the same fate) reacted, he just stands there, in the silence and asks Optimus if there's any hope of Starscream being alive. It's the way he beeps that really hits you in the gut.
      • The truly touching thing was that Starscream was desperately trying to get Megatron to do the right thing, even if cost him his own life. He made a point how he remembers that a very long time ago he made an oath to Megatron and knows that he could never bring himself to break that oath by striking down Megatron.
    • In the following episode, when Megatron talks about Starscream, it may well the only time any Megatron has ever shown any Starscream some respect.
  • Optimus Prime's death. (It's Optimus, of course he dies at least once.)
    • What got me with Optimus's death in Armada was Jetfire's reaction, the screams and then his discovery that all that was left of Optimus was his faithful Minicon holding his Matrix.
    • Sparkplug was what did it for me too. He didn't seem to know what was going on, just that he had to hold on to that thing.
    • How about the fact that unlike other versions? This one wasn't triumphant and nor did it look heroic.... he just.... turned to dust and that's it for him.
  • Galvatron sending himself to his own demise, knowing that if he lived the war would continue and Unicron would arise again. This show's got a high body count, but they make every one count.
  • After the final battle with Unicron at the end of Armada, Optimus is alive, floating in space. He sees the Matrix floating nearby and thinks to himself that he isn't worthy of wielding it, much less of being a leader anymore.
  • Hotshot's beating in "Credulous". He was trying to save Sideways from Megatron's wrath and when he does, he was hit with a rough case of reality. Sideways kicks the Star Saber away from Hotshot and it lands in front of the then-evil Starscream. Hotshot is clearly ashamed and does not save himself from Demolisher and Cyclonus.