the cartoon sucked. the animated movie is a minor masterpiece. the Bay movie rocked. the G1 comics are awesome. most particularly Furman's stuff. END!
Yeah the comics are the holy grail, but the cartoon is a lot of fun. Not because of the plots (which were frequently stupid) or animation (which was frequently cheap), but the characters are so memorable - the voice actors really do try their very best to transcend the material.
The animated movie is half great, half average, with just enough stupid in there that it doesn't feel entirely disconnected from the cartoon.