Soundwave was the Decepticons communications officer and one of Megatron's staunchest supporters, is the true eyes and ears of the Decepticons. Stationed high in the upper atmosphere and capable of processing millions of data streams at once, he is fully capable of taking over communications on a planetary scale. Whenever He or his master needed a deed done, Soundwave would leave it to one of his minions, trusting them to serve the Decepticon cause. His known minions were Ravage, Laserbeak, Rumble, Ratbat, Buzzsaw, Beastbox and sometimes Howlback.
Soundwave is voiced by Frank Welker (who is also famously known for his voice of Megatron) in Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen and Transformers: Dark of the Moon. In the 2018 film Bumblebee, he is voiced by Jon Bailey.
Thousands of years ago on Cybertron, Soundwave stood by Megatron's side on Unification Day, when a new era of Cybertronian government was ushered in that saw the planet ruled by two bodies—Megatron's Defense Force, of which Soundwave became a part, and Optimus's Science Division. Megatron's lust for power soon led him to claim dominion over Optimus, however, and Soundwave was silently present when Megatron summoned Optimus and made this declaration.
Some time later, Megatron came under the influence of The Fallen, who sought to be freed from the sarcophagus that was his trans-dimensional prison. To this end, Soundwave was assigned captaincy of the newly built spacecraft Nemesis, which would take the sarcophagus across the galaxy to find the world on which The Fallen had built a Star Harvester millennia beforehand. Soundwave and his crew left Cybertron with The Fallen's sarcophagus just before the outbreak of the war.
Soundwave appeared unknown to the Autobots. New Tricks He commanded a small Decepticon cell, based out of Mars' moon Phobos. While nominally under the command of The Fallen, The Fallen was merely in contact with the Decepticons and currently incapacitated. This left Soundwave free to do his own thing...
After thousands of years of searching the stars, Soundwave's Nemesis detected the faint energy signature of the AllSpark, which had been jettisoned from Cybertron in their absence. Unfortunately for them, so did the Ark, an Autobot spacecraft that had also left Cybertron after the Nemesis and which was teleporting around space and time via a space bridge. The Ark materialized partially within the Nemesis, the intersection of their molecules crippled both ships. While the Ark teleported away, leaving a temporary space bridge portal lingering in its wake, the Decepticons managed to set the Nemesisdown on a barren moon. For the first time, The Fallen, recognizing the space bridge as the technology of his people, spoke directly into Soundwave's mind, directing him to take the Decepticons aboard the smaller ship Longshot and follow the Ark through the portal. Complying, Soundwave's crew found themselves hurled into the future, appearing in the vicinity of Earth in the year 1961 alongside the Ark. The Autobot craft proceeded to crash on Earth's moon, and Soundwave quickly determined to keep humankind from plundering the treasures it contained: mysterious pillars that he had his crew set about removing from the ship and stockpiling.
Unfortunately for Soundwave, humanity detected the crash of the Ark upon the Moon, and a "space race" began between the United States of America and the Soviet Union to be the first to reach the Moon. The Soviets were first to send probes that photographed the moon's surface: in 1963, their Luna 4 captured an image of the pillars as they were being moved. Dark of the Moon Realizing the necessity of infiltrating the ranks of humanity in order to control the flow of data, Soundwave had the Pretender kill and replace Spetsnaz agent Alisa Morozov in 1964; then, in 1965, as the Soviets' Luna 6was in flight, he sent her to Soviet Research Station Oktober to massacre the scientists awaiting data the probe would send back. Convinced by the Pretender that Humanity could be subverted towards their ends, Soundwave struck a deal with the sole surviving scientist, Voskhod, to curtail further Soviet moon missions. In the process, the Pretender also learned that both America and Russia allegedly had a Cybertronian in their individual custodies, but Soundwave dismissed them as rumors, preferring to focus on the trail of the AllSpark and the Star Harvester.
Realizing that a captive American secret agent, Bill Simmons had escaped from Research Station Oktober during the Pretender's attack, Soundwave spent two months scanning information lines in search of him, eventually discovering him when he returned to North America and made contact with his superiors. Although the Pretender failed to finish him off, Soundwave had at last learned of Simmons's well-hidden organization: Sector Seven. Convergence chapter 3 In 1969, he monitored the launch of their Ghost 1 craft, believing it to be of greater importance than the Apollo 11 moon mission, but his guess proved incorrect: Thanks to Soundwave's being distracted, astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin were able to carry out the first brief excavation of the Ark. Incensed by his failure, Soundwave grew even more determined to find a mole within the American space program, and he set Ravage to find prospective candidates. He found a NASA accountant named Gould and tapped the stock market to provide enough financial persuasion for the human to manipulate the NASA budget to halt moon missions from 1972onwards.
Soundwave spent the rest of the 1970s recruiting more human pawns to prevent the Ark from being rediscovered. Eventually, in 1979, deciding that everything was secure, he and his crew departed Earth on the Longshot to reconvene with The Fallen back aboard the Nemesis, but with no space bridge portal to teleport them, the voyage took something in the vicinity of fourteen years. A brief talk with The Fallen yielded information: in Soundwave's absence, Megatron had visited the Nemesis, on the trail of the AllSpark. Soundwave realized that his leader must have been one of the Cybertronians in captivity on Earth, and immediately departed to return to the planet, putting most of his crew in statis. Before leaving, he presented The Fallen with one of the pillars from the Ark; after he left, The Fallen used it to finally free himself from his sarcophagus.
One of his goals was to find the location of the Tomb of the Primes. The aging SeekerRansack knew it but would only tell it to The Fallen. Strangely unwilling to put The Fallen and Ransack in touch and oddly preferring to personally know the location of the key to a monstrous superweapon himself Back-to-Back, Soundwave turned to the dormant Seekers instead. He directed Grindor to Las Vegas to carve up one such Seeker for its "memory tree". He refused to explain the reason why to Grindor. When NEST showed up, Soundwave appeared contemptuous of them and their whole species, noting Transformers owned this world long before mankind. To Grindor, he simply said to get the memory tree to him and not get captured.
Later, on The Fallen's orders, he directed Ravage to find Skids and Mudflap, find out what they knew about The Fallen's plans and who they'd told it to, and then terminate them. When Ravage had cornered Mudflap, Soundwave talked through him and attempted to interrogate the Autobot; this failed, with Mudflap not even being bothered about who Soundwave was. While the hit was a bust, Soundwave ensured the base was bugged. As a result, he discovered Sideswipe distrusted the twins.
During Soundwave's return voyage to Earth, Decepticon forces under the command of Starscream had arrived on the planet and freed Megatron, only for both the Decepticon leader and the AllSpark to be destroyed in battle in Mission City. Soundwave returned one month after his leader's death, but detoured briefly to investigate a space-time anomaly on Mars. There, he discovered a jury-rigged space bridge created from one of the Ark's pillars (created by Thundercracker), the remains of Dreadwing's, an imprint of Frenzy's body, Aand a message from Starscream that informed him of the recent events on Earth. Soundwave immediately made contact with Starscream, who had just finished battling Wreckage, and ordered him back to the Longshot to awaken the rest of his crew from stasis. Dispatching what few crew members were currently active to begin searching the planet for the Star Harvester, Soundwave assumed the form of a satellite and took up orbit around Earth.
As the search continued, Soundwave re-established contact with his many human pawns, including Gould's son Dylan, who had inherited his father's role as Decepticon liaison.Earth's upper atmosphere, Soundwave received a transmission from Wheelie, who was following Mikaela Banes and instructed him to obtain a surviving shard of the AllSpark in her possession. He found a satellite transmitting a conversation between N.E.S.T. and the United States military. Latching onto and hacking into it to listen, Soundwave overheard Theodore Galloway mention another shard of the AllSpark in storage at Diego Garcia, and of Megatron's burial in the Laurentian Abyss.
Formulating a plan, Soundwave waited until it would be nightfall on Diego Garcia, then ejected Ravage (who was equipped with Scalpel and the microcons comprising Reedman) to Diego Garcia to steal the shard. Once they had stolen the shard, they reunited with a quadrio of Constructicons and managed to resurrect their leader.
Soundwave remained in space, tapping into the satellite he had found. When Megatron decided to reveal the Transformers' presence on Earth after killing Optimus Prime, Soundwave issued the mobilization order to the waiting troops on the Nemesis. As the Decepticons streaked toward Earth, Soundwave tracked down Ron and Judy Witwicky in Paris. He called Judy on her cellphone, demanding to know where Sam was, which Judy dismissed as a prank call by a pervert. This allowed the Decepticons to track them down and capture them to use as bait for Sam.
When the CIA discovered that Sam was in Egypt, Soundwave relayed the information to the Decepticons. During Operation: Firestorm, Soundwave blocked the satellites covering the Egyptian area, making things appear normal. General Morshower was unconvinced though and got other local informants to know what was happening at the pyramids
Months after the battle in Egypt, Soundwave detected Ravage was alive and active, and was furious someone else was ordering his pet around. TMonitoring Earth, he observed Alice's attempt at flight and subsequent termination by NEST. Buzzsaw, who he'd dispatched to Kingdom Petrochemicals to investigate Ravage's status, reported back that there were non-NEST humans poking around there, so Soundwave sent in Ratbat, Rumble and Beastbox to attack. Surprisingly the humans were a match for the Decepticons, and Soundwave moved in to take direct action, however at that point the Autobots arrived. Soundwave destroyed Breakaway, but when the human forces pulled out, so too did Soundwave. To his surprise, he found he wasn't able to track where the departing humans had gone.
Ravage was reactivated by Buzzsaw, allowing Soundwave to access his memories. Acting on one memory, he sent Buzzsaw to help Strike Team Ursa while he rendezvoused with Ravage for an examination. When Strike Team Ursa triggered defenses, Soundwave warned them to withdraw. They did, but ran into Ironhide and Sideswipe, and Soundwave was forced to come to their aid. Unfortunately, Optimus Prime was also on the way, and Soundwave was no match for the Autobot leader. He tried to suggest it would be advantageous for them to let him go, but Optimus took him into custody. Soundwave was secured and put on a plane bound for Odessa, Texas, however the plane was shot down by Buzzsaw, and then Bumblebee's team had Dirt Boss and Soundwave's minions to contend with as well. Soundwave tried to get Ravage to free him, but the cat's free will was overridden by an external force. In the end, Soundwave was too much trouble and Bumblebee let the Decepticons have him back.
Soundwave tracked Ravage back to the Initiative base in California. After sending the other Decepticons in first to test the base's defenses, he moved in himself, only to find that the foe he faced had an army of brainwashed Transformers. He somehow escaped them and proceeded to the NEST base in Odessa. He led the Autobots to the base's location, though he "neglected" to tell them about the brainwashed Transformers, but the base was gone, leading to the conclusion it was somehow mobile. Tapping into traffic cameras, he traced the base to Oregon. When they got there and began the assault, Soundwave was snootily dismissive of the Autobots' combat banter. While the Initiative was distracted, Soundwave was able to reactivate Ravage and send Reedman to attack Initiative head Carter Newell. When Newell tried to flee with the AllSpark, Soundwave ordered Buzzsaw to assist Optimus Prime in pursuing him. It was only after everything was over that NEST discovered that the Initiative databanks had been mysteriously picked clean...
Adopting a new body, Soundwave then took up residence at Megatron's base in Namibia When Arcee, Elita-One and Chromia discovered Shockwave's Driller in the Adirondack Mountains, Soundwave was present to jam their communications and then send his minions to attack them. Rising Storm #3 With Elita-One leaving to warn the Autobots about Shockwave in person, the other two were surrounded by Soundwave and his animals. They chose to sacrifice themselves using a powerful bomb, though Soundwave managed to escape the explosion and return to Namibia and the Decepticons now planned to alert Optimus Prime to the Ark's presence on the moon so he could revive Sentinel Prime with the Matrix of Leadership for them.Laserbeak visited the incapicitated Megatron in Africa, and informed the ex-tyrant that Optimus had discovered an Ark fuel cell at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant, and had recovered the body of Sentinel Prime and five of his Space Bridge Pillars. Megatron decided it was time to eliminate loose ends in their plan, so Soundwave sent Laserbeak to further draw out the Autobots by killing many of their human contacts, including Jerry Wang.
Meanwhile, the disguised Soundwave was "given" by their human ally Dylan Gould, the one human they did not kill, as a gift to Sam Witwicky's new girlfriend Carly Spencer. He was used as a car to transport Carly to Dylan's party. During the party, Sam and Carly tried to leave, only for Soundwave and Laserbeak to reveal themselves, and the sonic warrior took Carly hostage. Gould explained his relationship with the two Decepticons while Soundwave sadistically used his tentacles to mentally torture Carly, and the pair forced Sam into finding out the Autobot's plan for a counter-attack.During the Decepticon occupation of Chicago, Soundwave took several Autobots prisoner until Gould stated that things had gotten personal and the Autobots needed a lesson of respect, and Soundwave happily concurred: "No prisoners, only trophies". He and Barricade began by executing Que. He then selected Bumblebee to be his victim and dragged him forward, pushing him onto the body of his fallen comrade. He then told the Autobot to turn around as was about to execute him, when he was distracted by Wheelie and Brains' sabotage of a Decepticon aircraft carrier, raining fighters onto the battlefield. Bumblebee took advantage of this small slip of opportunity and punched Soundwave as they battled through the chaos, causing him to drop one of his guns. Evading Soundwave's sonic cannon blasts, Bumblebee eventually blasted part of Soundwave's leg, causing him to drop his remaining gun, and he lunged at the Autobot. Bumblebee then delivered the final blow by throwing an uppercut to Soundwave's torso and shooting Soundwave fro, within his chest, blowing apart his head, and casually flipping his body over to the side. Soundwave s remains were presumably taken away for study by KSI.
When Viviane Wembly was abducted by Hot Rod, she remarked that her captor had better be a famous Transformer, like Shockwave or Soundwave, perhaps unaware that both Deceptions were deceased. Hot Rod retorted that he was more impressive than either of them.
Soundwave also briefly appears in the 2018 film Bumblebee, serving as one of Megatron's lieutenants. He is shown ordering the Decepticons to attack the Autobots and later ejecting Ravage from his torso to attack Optimus Prime.