If you thought 12 July 2022 meant deals galore on Amazon Prime, think again. To the massive online community of Transformers fans, Optimus Prime Day is in full swing and it has a totally different meaning.

Way before Amazon turned Prime basically synonymous with deals, the term had a very different meaning for nerds everywhere.

According to fans, Optimus Prime Day (or Prime Day for short) marks the death of the beloved Transformer at Autobot City.

Just like the real meaning of Christmas shifted from celebrating religion, the winter solstice or family, to being all about presents, so too has the real meaning of Prime Day changed, Optimus fans say.

Fandom Invasion Cosplay Convention
Photo by Daniel Knighton/Getty Images

What is Optimus Prime Day?

For Transformers fans, Optimus Prime Day is a somber occasion commemorating the death of Optimus Prime in The Transformers: The Movie (1986). According to many fans, that was one of the best fights in Transformers history.

After a legendary show-off with Megatron, Optimus has been shot a few times and lay dying surrounded by the Autobots. In his last moments, he manages to pass on power before his eyes fade to black and his body turns from the famous scarlet and blue into a dull grey.

According to an urban legend, Optimus actually crumbles to dust in this scene, but there is no footage of this.

This is the first time Optimus dies in the franchise, so it hit fans particularly hard – even all these years later. The beloved character dies numerous times in the different Transformers properties, which helps to build the character’s lore (and add new toys to the growing list of merch).

Transformers fans reclaim Prime Day

According to Transformers fans, that’s the real meaning of Prime Day. Every year when Amazon announces their day of special deals, Optimus fans flood Twitter with memes to celebrate the holiday’s somber origins.

This is, of course, a spin-off of the popular discourse surrounding Christmas. After Thanksgiving, as Christmas deals and ads start pouring in, so do tweets reminding people that the true purpose of the holiday was to celebrate Jesus, or family, or the winter solstice (or all three at different times throughout history).

Fun fact: this is not a recent phenomenon. The first traces of Christians worrying about the secularisation of Christmas come from the mid-19th century when early advertising shifted to focus on Santa Claus and gift exchanging.

Grace Coolidge, Santa Claus, and children next to Christmas tree ca. December 1927
Photo by: HUM Images/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

A popular 1822 poem introduced the idea of gift-giving to the wider public and Christmas shopping quickly became a socially and economically important activity. A story by Harriet Beecher Stowe from 1850 already satirises the spreading concern about the “true meaning of Christmas”.

By the mid-20th century, satirists like Tom Lehrer were putting the trope to good use, with musical and literary parodies.

So, in a way, Optimus Prime Day is just the latest off-the-wall version of one of the oldest memes ever.

Does Amazon have any Transformers deals this Prime Day?

But on to more burning questions: does Amazon have any Transformers deals on Prime Day 2022? You can’t celebrate Optimus Prime without at least a bit of indulgence.

Yes. It looks like Amazon learned from previous years when Transformers deals were nowhere in sight on Optimus Prime Day.

This year, Amazon boasts a Heroic Optimus Prime Action Figure at just $17.29. Standing at 11″ in height, the Optimus Prime toy transforms from a truck into a robot and back again and seems to be sturdy enough to withstand long hours of play.

Additionally, you can get the two-pack with Optimus and Megatron for $2.20 more than the Dinobots Unite Optimus for $29.95. For younger fans, aged 3-6, Playskool has an $8.99 deal on the Energize Optimus Prime figure.

The best Optimus Prime Day memes

As we celebrate Prime Day, Optimus action figures in hand, Twitter users urge us to remember the true origins of this day – with a slew of memes.

Related Topics