The Transformers Archive Skip to main content / Also skip section headers

[The Transformers Archive - an international fan site]
Please feel free to log in or register.

 
  • transformers toys
  • transformers comics
  • transformers cartoon
  • transformers live-action movies
  • transformers fandom
  • transformers forum

THE TRANSFORMERS: COMICS, BOOKS AND MANGA

IDW Publishing
(2005-now)
Devil's Due
(2003-2007)
Dreamwave
(2002-2004)
Club/Con
(2001-now)
Titan Books
(2001-now)
Marvel Comics
(1984-1994)
Japanese
Manga
Other Books
and Titles

MARVEL TRANSFORMERS COMICS GUIDE

Marvel UK nav: UK Intro | Story List | #1-10 | #11-20 | #21-30 | #31-40 | #41-50 | #51-60 | #61-70 | #71-80
#81-90 | #91-100 | #101-110 | #111-120 | #121-130 | #131-140 | #141-150 | #151-160 | #161-170
#171-180 | #181-190 | #191-200 | #201-210 | #211-220 | #221-230 | #231-240 | #241-250 | #252-260
#261-270 | #271-280 | #281-290 | #291-300 | #301-310 | #311-320 | #321-330 | #331-332 | Cover Images
Annuals: 1985 Annual | 1986 Annual | 1987 Annual | 1988 Annual | 1989 Annual | 1990 Annual | 1991 Annual
Other titles / G2: Action Force #24-27 | Specials & Collected Comics | UK G2 Intro | UK G2 #1-5 | UK G2 Annual

UK #251 - #260

| #251 | #252 | #253 | #254 | #255 | #256 | #257 | #258 | #259 | #260 |

#251 - "Skin Deep" Part 3 & "The Void!"

[cover]
Cover: Gary Erskine

Cover Date: 06/01/90

"Skin Deep" Part 3
Script:
Simon Furman
Pencils: José Delbo
Inks: Dave Hunt
Letters: Jim Massara
Colours: Nel Yomtov

Originally Printed In: Pages 12-16 of US Transformers #59, dated Mid November 1989.
Later Reprinted By: Transformers - Primal Scream [US version, Worldwide].

"The Void!"
Script: Simon Furman
Art: Staz [pseudonym for Stewart Johnson]
Letters: Glib

Later Reprinted By: Titan Books: Aspects of Evil [Worldwide].

"Skin Deep" Part 3

Synopsis: Hot Rod is able to injure Starscream on Earth, causing his personality to resurface. He then promptly surrenders to Scorponok. Meanwhile, on Cybertron Ratchet has teleported the explosives from the Ark to Megatron's base. Megatron tries to escape via a portal, but Ratchet tackles him and the base explodes. Meanwhile, the Earth-based Decepticons have retreated, with Prime reasoning that Starscream will cause dissent in the Decepticon ranks.

Errors: On page 4, all Ratchet's red is a kind of ruddy orange again. Hot Rod injures Starscream very easily.

Transformers featured [in rough order of appearance]: Optimus Prime, Mindwipe, Starscream, Weirdwolf, Hot Rod, Scorponok, Ratchet, Megatron, Bumblebee, Dreadwind, Grimlock, Detour, Jazz, Hyperdrive.

Notable Others: Zarak.

Review: Furman's first US arc is far from a masterpiece; in fact, in places, it's far from good. The conclusion is one of the better parts, though. Ratchet's sacrifice isn't especially emotional, but once again it's great to see the medic utterly on top of things, full of grim smiles, and with every detail covered. This is counterbalanced a little by the swift defeat of Starscream, however.

[*][*][*][*][*][*][*][0][0][0]

"The Void!"

Synopsis: In 2010, the Autobots are heading towards Earth via Hyperspace, fleeing the Decepticon-ruled Cybertron. Onboard, someone has sabotaged the guidance systems. To add to Kup's problems, Rodimus Prime has disappeared. The ship materialises too close to Earth, unable to slow down its flight, while Kup has deduced the saboteur is an Autobot.

Notes: This story takes place in the alternate future formed by the events of #205. The Autobots' discovery of this changed future, and Galvatron's dominion of Cybertron, happened in #224. As far as I can tell, the three Autobots killed are generics, though they do look similar to some of the early Pretender inner robots.

Errors: While some time's elapsed since #224, the Autobots seem to have accepted that time's sorted itself out in a most improbable way [where, exactly, did Galvatron come from?] with worrying ease. In the second panel on page 2, Rodimus' wing is missing. The given date [New Year's Day 2009] is an error, as the future segments of Time Wars take place in 2009.

Transformers featured [in rough order of appearance]: Kup, Red Alert, Rodimus Prime, Flak, Sidetrack, Sunrunner, Bigshot, Galvatron [flashback], Arcee, Doubleheader, Pincher.

Extras: A-Z covers Runabout and Runamuck.

Back-Up Strips:
Action Force - "The Lower Depths" Part 3
Combat Colin

Review: A good set-up for a murder mystery, though having some of the intricacies of this new future explained would be nice. As it is there's a feel of "Well, Galvatron's back, and has Cybertron. Deal with it!" which distracts a little too much. Staz' pencils aren't very atmospheric, but at least they didn't let Erskine draw it - his cover is one of the worst of the run.

[*][*][*][*][*][*][0][0][0][0]

#252 - "Yesterday's Heroes!" Part 1 & "Edge of Impact"

[cover]
Cover: Gary Erskine

Cover Date: 13/01/90

"Yesterday's Heroes!" Part 1
Script:
Simon Furman
Pencils: José Delbo
Inks: Dave Hunt
Letters: Jim Massara
Colours: Nel Yomtov

Originally Printed In: Pages 1-6 of US Transformers #60, dated December 1989.
Later Reprinted By: Transformers - Primal Scream [US version, Worldwide].

"Edge of Impact"
Script: Simon Furman
Art: Staz [pseudonym for Stewart Johnson]
Letters: Glib

Later Reprinted By: Titan Books: Aspects of Evil [Worldwide].

"Yesterday's Heroes!" Part 1

Synopsis: Optimus Prime is still upset by the death of Ratchet, which is causing him to reconsider the whole war. On Cybertron, the mood is more upbeat, with Grimlock, Jazz and Bumblebee revitalising the Autobot resistance.

Notes: Perceptor, Powerglide and Prowl are all listed as deceased. The deaths of Perceptor and Powerglide remain something of a mystery, though neither has been seen since the Underbase Saga. Prowl's will be revealed in #275.

Errors: The Micromasters! They're bloody huge - the same height as the Pretenders' robot modes! This is made even worse on page 6, when a more-or-less correct-size Red Hot is seen in robot mode, standing on a giant ambulance-mode Fixit. At the top of page 3, Quickmix' left forearm is missing. Landfill's red has changed to orange by the last page. I have no idea who that's meant to be with Fort Max in the Underbase flashback, but the only TF around when Starscream attacked him was Omega Supreme - who it isn't.

Transformers featured [in rough order of appearance]: Optimus Prime, Starscream [flashback], Fortress Maximus [flashback], Kup, Hot Rod, Scoop, Quickmix, Landfill, Bumblebee, Jazz, Grimlock, Fixit, Stakeout, Seawatch, Red Hot.

Review: Melodramatic and unengaging. Familiarity has desensitised me to many of Delbo's, erm, eccentricities, but the oversized Micros really grate here, as do the Star Wars cantina reject Decepticons. Prime's behaviour really does seem rather OTT - while Ratchet was clearly his friend, it somewhat devalues the character - has he never lost one before...? Considering he barely blinks following the Underbase saga, it seems a bit much.

[*][*][*][*][0][0][0][0][0][0]

"Edge of Impact"

Synopsis: Kup discovers Longtooth stooped over an unconscious Rodimus. Kup suspects him, but Arcee sets him straight. Meanwhile, the ship is still crashing to Earth, and it's full of Energon for the humans. Arcee fires the retro engines, and the ship crashes without exploding, but the saboteur is revealed to be Rodimus himself.

Errors: The Autobots, we are told, are running desperately from Galvatron's Cybertron. And they have, according to Arcee, 430+ troops, and enough Energon to give a shipload of it to Earth. Not exactly the retreat from Dunkirk, is it? If Kup has his suspicions, why head to the coolant room alone? It's unclear as to who actually fires the retros - it would seem to be Arcee, but how? The trajectory shown for the crash is unintentionally comical, making it look like the ship suddenly took a sharp left into the ground.

Transformers featured [in rough order of appearance]: Kup, Longtooth, Red Alert, Arcee, Red Alert, Flak, Quickmix.

Extras: A-Z covers Sandstorm and Scavenger.

Back-Up Strips:
Action Force - "The Lower Depths" Part 4
Combat Colin

Review: Due to the tight format, the revelation of the saboteur being Rodimus is probably played a little early, and this has a knock-on effect - Kup's paranoia is never convincing, and the "it's one of us" angle isn't really wound out to the extent it could have been. Staz' pencils also still look bare, not really providing the claustrophobic feeling that would compliment the story.

[*][*][*][*][*][*][0][0][0][0]

#253 - "Yesterday's Heroes!" Part 2 & "Shadow of Evil"

[cover]
Cover: Stephen Baskerville

Cover Date: 20/01/90

"Yesterday's Heroes!" Part 2
Script:
Simon Furman
Pencils: José Delbo
Inks: Dave Hunt
Letters: Jim Massara
Colours: Nel Yomtov

Originally Printed In: Pages 7-12 of US Transformers #60, dated December 1989.
Later Reprinted By: Transformers - Primal Scream [US version, Worldwide].

"Shadow of Evil"
Script: Simon Furman
Art: Cam S [Smith]
Letters: Stuart Bartlett [Annie Halfacree is erroneously credited]

Later Reprinted By: Titan Books: Aspects of Evil [Worldwide].

"Yesterday's Heroes!" Part 2

Synopsis: Grimlock, Jazz and Bumblebee are being reassigned to Earth. Their success on Cybertron has not gone unnoticed by Thunderwing, who dispatches Bludgeon, Stranglehold and Octopunch to kill them. Meanwhile, Prime lands the Ark on the moon, and sets out alone to brood. Hot Rod has a plan - to use a Guardian Mark V robot to get Prime out of his depression. However, the robot malfunctions, and really does start damaging the Autobots. Prime hurries back to save his troops.

Notes: Thunderwing has led the Cybertron-based Decepticons since Megatron's disappearance in #251 - his ascendance was shown in #242. The Mark V Guardian was never used because it was unreliable.

Errors: Why keep an unreliable Guardian robot on the Ark? Even if they would, there are all sorts of uses for the thing before now - say, sending it to Megatron's base with the explosives to keep Megatron busy. It looks like Brainstorm is standing behind Prime when he gets shot by the Guardian. The Decepticons storing fuel in giant canisters with "FUEL" written on them is bafflingly low-tech. Scoop's Autobot insignia is uncoloured right at the start. Highbrow is in his too-much-blue Yomtov scheme. Stranglehold has white on him - his chest and thighs should be flesh-coloured. Kup's toes are red as the Guardian decks him. As he confronts the Guardian in the last frame, Optimus' legs go white.

Transformers featured [in rough order of appearance]: Jazz, Bumblebee, Grimlock, Scoop, Landfill, Stakeout, Thunderwing, Bludgeon, Stranglehold, Octopunch, Cloudburst, Highbrow, Kup, Optimus Prime, Hot Rod, Brainstorm.

Review: Better than the first part. It's well laid out, and though Prime seems to be easy to sway, it reads nicely that he never really walked out anyway - it was more something he had to get out of his system briefly rather than follow through on. The biggest problem is Delbo's design for the Guardian, which is both ugly and ridiculous.

[*][*][*][*][*][*][0][0][0][0]

"Shadow of Evil"

Synopsis: Rodimus, driven insane by the Matrix, has decimated the Autobot force, but Kup still won't authorise lethal force, correctly guessing Rodimus is fighting the evil influence, Unicron, inside the Matrix. However, he is having little success. As reinforcements from Autobot City Earth arrive, Kup reluctantly agrees to try to kill Rodimus.

Notes: The Matrix became tainted by Rodimus' rage in #224, though it's possible Unicron had been lurking since his defeat during the events of Transformers: The Movie.

Errors: Nearly everyone's missing Autobot insignia, and when they do appear they're rarely rendered well.

Transformers featured [in rough order of appearance]: Getaway [deactivated by Rodimus Prime], Chainclaw [deactivated by Rodimus Prime] , Quickmix [deactivated by Rodimus Prime] , Rodimus Prime, Siren [deactivated by Rodimus Prime] , Red Alert, Kup, Arcee, Doubleheader [deactivated by Rodimus Prime] , Hosehead [deactivated by Rodimus Prime] , Longtooth [deactivated by Rodimus Prime] , Perceptor, Afterburner, Blaster, Strafe. There are several Transformers that either I can't recognise, or are unrecognisable: most of those in the bottom frame of page 1, whoever that is on the left of page 2, and whoever's thoroughly blown up on page 3. Given the last two parts, though, they could just be generics - especially as the crew of the Autobot ship numbers over 430.

Extras: A-Z profiles Scrapper and Seaspray.

Back-Up Strips:
Action Force - "The Lower Depths" Part 5
Combat Colin

Review: Interesting. While Kup's refusal to use lethal force is both stupid and frustrating, it's also very much in character, and to see Rodimus' inner self have such a devastating manifestation is very dramatic. Cam Smith's Transformers aren't pretty, but his heavy inks do lend grit to the storyline. The best part of the mini-saga so far.

[*][*][*][*][*][*][*][*][0][0]

#254 - "Yesterday's Heroes!" Part 3 & "White Fire"

[cover]
Cover: Stephen Baskerville

Cover Date: 27/01/90

"Yesterday's Heroes!" Part 3
Script:
Simon Furman
Pencils: José Delbo
Inks: Dave Hunt
Letters: Jim Massara
Colours: Nel Yomtov

Originally Printed In: Pages 13-18 of US Transformers #60, dated December 1989.
Later Reprinted By: Transformers - Primal Scream [US version, Worldwide].

"White Fire"
Script: Simon Furman
Art: Cam Smith
Letters: Stuart Bartlett

Later Reprinted By: Titan Books: Aspects of Evil [Worldwide].

"Yesterday's Heroes!" Part 3

Synopsis: As the Autobot Pretenders and Rescue Patrol bid farewell to Xaaron, Bludgeon's team infiltrate the base, and follow them through. The damage they did on their way means Xaaron is unsure where either group are. Meanwhile, Optimus Prime destroys the Guardian, and finds himself with a reason to fight on - to inspire others. Grimlock's group of Autobots, however, have materialised under Cybertron, unaware that their attackers are nearby, and stumble upon the sleeping form of Primus.

Notes: Primus being in rest at the centre of Cybertron is presumably a well-known myth.

Errors: The generic Autobot operating the Trans-time portal loses his Autobot insignia as Bludgeon kills him. Xaaron mentioning Primus for the first time in "many a year", and the subsequent conversation, really knocks the credibility of the story - it's actually something of a Furman trademark, and looks especially bad coming so soon after Optimus' reminiscences on Megatron, pages before he returns... On page 3, in the top right, Optimus' left leg goes white, and in the bottom-left his head design goes strange. Xaaron, thanks to Nel's ill-equipped crayon set, gets a yellow head from hereon in.

Transformers featured [in rough order of appearance]: Stranglehold, Bludgeon, Octopunch, Fixit, Grimlock, Jazz, Red Hot, Seawatch, Bumblebee, Xaaron, Stakeout, Optimus Prime, Hot Rod, Blurr.

Notable Others: Primus [sleeping].

Review: Rather rushed and anticlimactic. The Mayhems' sudden incision into the Autobase feels very poorly thought out, as does how exactly they end up in the portal. As mentioned above, the conversation about Primus feels silly, and Delbo really isn't up to the Primus splash page. Furman's US run still fails to find any consistent stride.

[*][*][*][*][*][0][0][0][0][0]

"White Fire"

Synopsis: Rodimus gradually makes ground on Unicron inside the Matrix. However, Kup removes the Matrix from Rodimus' chest, awakening him, before he can completely purge Unicron from the Matrix. Unicron will now be there waiting for him.

Errors: On the last page, Perceptor is missing his shoulder cannon, and Red Alert has Blaster's head. And the Matrix looks like a cake-tin with handles.

Transformers featured [in rough order of appearance]: Rodimus Prime, Arcee, Kup, Perceptor, Blaster, Strafe [deactivated by Rodimus Prime], Red Alert.

Back-Up Strips:
GI Joe: The Action Force - "Transit" Part 1
Combat Colin

Review: A fittingly dark conclusion, with a good noncommittal ending. The story itself is interesting, and once again while the dynamics of Cam Smith's Transformers aren't spot-on, he does lend the story a certain dark tone. The central concept of the Dark Rodimus arc is very interesting, and it's further proof of what Furman could do in this tight format when he wanted to.

[*][*][*][*][*][*][*][*][0][0]

#255 - "Perchance to Dream 1 - Prowl"

[cover]
Cover: Stephen Baskerville

Cover Date: 03/02/90

Script: Simon Furman
Art: Andy Wildman
Letters: Glib

Later Reprinted By: Titan Books: Perchance to Dream [Worldwide].

NB: For the colour Transformers strip, "Worlds Apart!" was reprinted. It was split into four parts and ran from #255 to #258. #255 contained the first half of #130.

Synopsis: Deactivated on the Ark, Prowl recalls how he chased the Battlechargers across America. Prowl loses his temper, and has to be restrained by Optimus Prime, as he's causing as much damage as the Decepticons. He stands down, but is unhappy about it - perfectly fitting the criteria of someone watching his dreams.

Notes: Ahh, Earthforce. There are several schools of thought as to where Earthforce fits. One version is that it simply doesn't, because Marvel UK were simply plugging the then-current European Classics range in the comic. Which is lovely. And for those totally devoid of imagination. Then there's the alternate future - at some point, this timeline diverges from the now-main US timeline. What exactly happens with Unicron, who will be mentioned in the Earthforce story in #261, is unclear. The other option is this stuff happens in the near-future, some time after #332. This can work with several stretches. The latter is my preference, but I won't be writing the guide as if that was fact, simply because it is an unpopular option.

The flashback in this issue takes place [off-panel] in #94. Prowl was deactivated during the Underbase Saga [the exact circumstances will be revealed in #268].

Errors: Lots of disappearing/reappearing insignia.

Transformers featured [in rough order of appearance]: Prowl [deactivated, and active in the flashback], Runabout [flashback] , Runamuck [flashback] , Optimus Prime [flashback] , Galvatron.

Letters Page: One Mark McNaughton writes in to inform us that Derek B's album "Bullet from a Gun" contains a couple of Transformer references. Dreadwind tells us Micromasters are, on average, 7ft. tall.

Back-Up Strips:
GI Joe: The Action Force - "Transit" Part 2
Combat Colin

Review: A superb character vignette, capturing Prowl perfectly, as well as instantly capturing the almost-amiable casual villainy of the Battlechargers. Wildman's art is simplistic, and he doesn't play to the strengths of black-and-white - this looks a bit like it's expecting a trip to an inker and then a colourist. However, he nails Prowl's expression on the final page. As well as this being a fine standalone, the framework is also intriguing.

[*][*][*][*][*][*][*][*][0][0]

#256 - "Perchance to Dream 2 - Ironhide"

[cover]
Cover: Stephen Baskerville

Cover Date: 10/02/90

Script: Simon Furman
Art: Staz [pseudonym for Stewart Johnson]
Letters: Glib

Later Reprinted By: Titan Books: Earthforce [Worldwide].

NB: For the colour Transformers strip, "Worlds Apart!" was reprinted. It was split into four parts and ran from #255 to #258. #256 contained the second half of #130.

Synopsis: Also deactivated on the Ark, Ironhide remembers how he managed to stop a terrorist siege, although the police nearly messed it up. It left him frustrated with humans, a feeling which impresses his watcher.

Notes: There's not a lot to peg when the flashback takes place. Ironhide's based on the Ark, under Optimus Prime. Most likely this is somewhere between #41 and #106.

Transformers featured [in rough order of appearance]: Ironhide [deactivated, and active in the flashback] , Galvatron.

Production Notes: The price goes up to 45p.

Letters Page: David Grew considerately writes in with the plot of the not-yet-printed in the UK "Primal Scream"... more astonishing, perhaps, is that Marvel UK printed the letter, with Dreadwind asking him not to give too much away for the American stories. Bit too late for that, eh? Mark Hallard also writes in with a totally unfounded TF:TM II rumour, for the "Pretender Exodus". Nice to know clueless rumours about a Transformers movie have been going round for years, eh?

Back-Up Strips:
GI Joe: The Action Force - "Transit" Part 3
Combat Colin

Review: Not as interesting as last issue, though Ironhide's given a nice base as a gruff, no-nonsense kind of a guy. The plot's just a bit blander, and Ironhide does seem a little unreasonable - it's not like he's working with the cops or anything. Staz works well in the black-and-white medium too - possibly because he never worked on the colour strips. Fun, but hardly vital.

[*][*][*][*][*][*][0][0][0][0]

#257 - "Perchance to Dream 3 - Sunstreaker"

[cover]
Cover: Art Wetherell

Cover Date: 17/02/90

Script: Simon Furman
Art: Andy Wildman
Letters: Stuart Bartlett

Later Reprinted By: Titan Books: Perchance to Dream [Worldwide].

NB: For the colour Transformers strip, "Worlds Apart!" was reprinted. It was split into four parts and ran from #255 to #258. #257 contained the first half of #131.

Synopsis: After finding Brawn to be unsuitable, Galvatron proceeds to Sunstreaker. The Autobot remembers how he and Jazz were checking out Megatron's first base on Earth, when his own lack of stealth allows Skywarp and Thundercracker to attack them. Skywarp takes out Jazz, and rather than get beaten up Sunstreaker turns and runs, taking the Decepticons close enough to US Army lines for the humans to attack the Decepticons. He walks off satisfied, oblivious to the human casualties. Galvatron watches this, and has found another Autobot for himself.

Notes: The flashback takes place during #5. Brawn was deactivated in #209. Sunstreaker was knocked out at some point since #175.

Errors: In the bottom-right frame of page 2, Sunstreaker's backpack goes missing.

Transformers featured [in rough order of appearance]: Brawn [deactivated], Galvatron, Sunstreaker [deactivated, and active in the flashback] , Jazz [flashback], Thundercracker [flashback], Skywarp [flashback], Megatron [flashback].

Back-Up Strips:
GI Joe: The Action Force - "Transit" Part 4
Combat Colin

Review: A superb little story. There's another faultless character snapshot of an underused Autobot, and this one's dressed in a dynamite little plot. Considering Furman's shown the "Autobot" in some Decepticons [Carnivac, and later on Scorponok], it's great that he doesn't baulk here going the other way, with the egocentric and selfish Sunstreaker superbly defined. Wildman's art again suffers from a massive lack of detail, but he gets emotion into Sunstreaker's face. Classic.

[*][*][*][*][*][*][*][*][*][*]

#258 - "Perchance to Dream 4 - Wheeljack"

[cover]
Cover: Jeff Anderson

Cover Date: 24/02/90

Script: Simon Furman
Art: Staz [pseudonym for Stewart Johnson]
Letters: Stuart Bartlett

Later Reprinted By: Titan Books: Perchance to Dream [Worldwide].

NB: For the colour Transformers strip, "Worlds Apart!" was reprinted. It was split into four parts and ran from #255 to #258. #258 contained the second half of #131.

Synopsis: Wheeljack remembers investigating the Decepticons' factory base, to find out about the technology used for Jetfire, when he's surprised by Ravage. After a brief tussle, he agrees to listen to Ravage, who offers him the secrets in return for Jetfire himself. Wheeljack plans to do this, but backs out. Back in the present, the memory has awakened him.

Notes: The flashback takes place after #40 [when the Decepticons abandon the factory base], but before #70 [Ravage will disappear the following issue]. This can actually be narrowed to happening most likely before #53, as Ravage refers to Jetfire as the Autobots' "newest recruit". It's probably, though, very soon after #40 as it's unlikely the base would be empty - Blackrock and the government, as well as both the Autobots and the Decepticons would be very interested to get inside.

Errors: The slash-marks to Wheeljack's face disappear straight away. Ravage's assertion that Jetfire broke his programming is erroneous, as Jetfire was a drone, and only received any programming to that degree when Prime brings him to life with the Matrix.

Transformers featured [in rough order of appearance]: Wheeljack, Ravage [flashback], Jetfire [flashback] .

Back-Up Strips:
GI Joe: The Action Force - "Going Under" Part 1
Combat Colin

Review: Smashing once again. Furman once again explores the inner demons and drives of an Autobot in a believable fashion, and Wheeljack's need to learn about new technology at almost any cost is well presented. The ever-suave Ravage works superbly as Wheeljack's desire, with the almost childish amiability of Jetfire playing his conscience perfectly. Staz' art generally works well, though in a couple of frames Ravage looks like a cross between Tony the Tiger and a sock puppet. But another solid hit for Furman, and some great background for a neglected character.

[*][*][*][*][*][*][*][*][*][0]

#259 - "Primal Scream" Part 1 & "Perchance to Dream 5 - Silverbolt"

[cover]
Cover: Andy Wildman

Cover Date: 03/03/90

"Primal Scream" Part 1
Script:
Simon Furman
Art: Geoff Senior
Letters: Jim Massara
Colours: Nel Yomtov

Originally Printed In: Pages 1-6 of US Transformers #61, dated Mid-December 1989.
Later Reprinted By: Transformers - Primal Scream [US version, Worldwide].

"Perchance to Dream 5 - Silverbolt"
Script: Simon Furman
Art: John Stokes
Letters: Stuart Bartlett

Later Reprinted By: Titan Books: Perchance to Dream [Worldwide].

"Primal Scream" Part 1

Synopsis: At the centre of Cybertron, an ancient mechanoid known as The Keeper. Grimlock refuses to acknowledge that Primus is real, and the Keeper retells the origin of the Transformers to prove it. Back at Autobase, Xaaron oversees work to finish the transfer, while Bludgeon's team continues to track their prey.

Notes: The origin was shown previously in #150. The Keeper is presumably a Transformer [well, a Child of Primus - his design hints that he may not actually transform].

Errors: Xaaron's got his yellow head again. Stranglehold now has pale blue and grey parts instead of flesh.

Transformers featured [in rough order of appearance]: The Keeper [first appearance], Fixit, Red Hot, Stakeout, Seawatch, Jazz, Bumblebee, Grimlock, Xaaron, Doubleheader, Stranglehold, Bludgeon.

Notable Others: Primus [sleeping, and his original form in flashback], Unicron [flashback].

Review: Glorious visuals from Geoff Senior [especially beautiful in the UK oversized format] disguise a slight plot. It's difficult to imagine the impact this must have had on US readers given that it was about three or four years since a decent artist had worked on the strip. The pencils and inks are among Senior's best work, and even Yomtov's lazy, flat colouring can't take the huge punch of the visuals away. The dialogue's great, especially the bullish Grimlock, but as epoch-making as the story might be for an American audience, it's hard to hide that it's a rerun for the UK reader.

[*][*][*][*][*][*][*][0][0][0]

"Perchance to Dream 5 - Silverbolt"

Synopsis: Galvatron's mind bug has malfunctioned. He rechecks the last transmission, from Silverbolt's memories. In the dream, Menasor attacks one of Blackrock's fuel plants, with the Aerialbots trying to stop him. Silverbolt struggles with his vertigo, and his neuroses about what the others would think if they knew. They're forced to form Superion, and the others hear about his fear in the combined mind. Silverbolt's rage leads to Superion trouncing Menasor, and endangering the plant workers. Galvatron, unable to find anything to cause the mind bug's problems, sets off to see for himself. However, his probe means Prowl, Ironhide, Sunstreaker, Wheeljack and Silverbolt are awake and ready, though.

Notes: This flashback's also a little hard to place precisely. Silverbolt hints that Superion is untested, but he's used in #90 on the Aerialbots' first mission, when he was the only one with a full personality. This isn't set before that, though. It must be just after, and Silverbolt means they need testing with all five full personality components. Presumably, then, the battle is between #90 and #91.

Errors: Both Menasor and Silverbolt get pupils in various panels.

Transformers featured [in rough order of appearance]: Galvatron, Menasor [flashback], Silverbolt, Skydive [flashback] , Fireflight [flashback] , Air Raid [flashback] , Slingshot [flashback] , Prowl, Wheeljack, Ironhide, Sunstreaker.

Extras: There was a free Transformers sticker with the issue.

Letters Page: Dreadwind claims Robert Louis Stevenson nicked the idea of Jekyll & Hyde from the Transformers.

Back-Up Strips:
GI Joe: The Action Force - "Going Under" Part 2
Combat Colin

Review: More of a missed opportunity, sadly. The combiner mind thing really deserves a lot more space than this, which is a shame. It's a nicely done story, with a good set-up for the conclusion, and it's nice to have John Stokes back onboard. Not bad, just not really particularly good.

[*][*][*][*][*][*][0][0][0][0]

#260 - "Primal Scream" Part 2 & "Perchance to Dream 6 - Galvatron"

[cover]
Cover: Geoff Senior

Cover Date: 10/03/90

"Primal Scream" Part 2
Script:
Simon Furman
Art: Geoff Senior
Letters: Jim Massara
Colours: Nel Yomtov

Originally Printed In: Pages 7-12 of US Transformers #61, dated Mid-December 1989.
Later Reprinted By: Transformers - Primal Scream [US version, Worldwide].

"Perchance to Dream 6 - Galvatron"
Script: Simon Furman
Art: Andy Wildman
Letters: Stuart Bartlett

Later Reprinted By: Titan Books: Perchance to Dream [Worldwide].

"Primal Scream" Part 2

Synopsis: The Keeper continues his tale, but is then killed by Bludgeon as the Decepticons arrive, having warned Bumblebee that Primus must not be awakened. The Autobots are thus unable to use their weapons for fear of a ricochet. Back on Earth, Scorponok comes under fire from his troops, who are upset that Starscream is allowed to rejoin the Decepticons after his previous attacks. This amuses Starscream, who is aiming to be as divisive as possible. Back in the heart of Cybertron, the Autobots are having little luck fighting Bludgeon's crew. However, Bumblebee begins to order a counterattack.

Notes: The origin story shows us the first Matrix holder [named as Prima in #293]. Starscream rejoined the Decepticons in #251, and tried to destroy the Decepticons in #207-210 and #248-251. He damaged Mindwipe specifically in #248.

Errors: Stranglehold gets his third successive colour scheme change, with a white chest and a green right arm. Misfire's very red all of a sudden. Starscream's face is white in the flashback, and blue in the present.

Transformers featured [in rough order of appearance]: Prima [flashback], Bumblebee, The Keeper [killed by one of the Mayhems], Grimlock, Bludgeon, Octopunch, Stranglehold, Scorponok, Mindwipe, Starscream, Misfire, Soundwave, Snapdragon, Slugslinger, Apeface, Jazz, Fixit, Stakeout, Red Hot, Seawatch.

Notable Others: Primus [sleeping], Unicron [flashback].

Review: Once again, Senior flexes his muscles to such effect that the story has little work to do. The dynamics and ultra-straight geometric designs are breathtaking, and even what could have been a dull little scene at Decepticon HQ crackles. The fight scene's well done, though the turning of the tide is a little unbelievable.

[*][*][*][*][*][*][*][0][0][0]

"Perchance to Dream 6 - Galvatron"

Synopsis: Galvatron confronts the Autobots. They put up a fight, but he's able to attach a mind control device to both Wheeljack and Prowl. Galvatron tells them he plans to unleash their dark sides, as seen in their dreams. However, the Autobots were shaming - they have learnt to ignore their baser instincts. They knock him down long enough to attach a device of their own, leaving him comatose and suffering his own nightmares.

Notes: This isn't the Galvatron seen in various stories from #78, and destroyed in #205. It's a fair conjecture, if you're following the "Earthforce comes after #332 " theory, that it's the alternate universe Galvatron introduced in #298. That said, there's nothing beyond neatness to suggest this - it could be any alternate Galvatron, though the above means an explanation for how another Galvatron got back to a decade or so before his creation. Sunstreaker's never heard of Galvatron - which points to him being off-line again well before the Time Wars.

Transformers featured [in rough order of appearance]: Wheeljack, Ironhide, Sunstreaker, Silverbolt, Prowl, Galvatron.

Letters Page: Dread Tidings switches to black-and-white.

Extras: The issue came with a Autobot Classic Heroes poster.

Back-Up Strips:
GI Joe: The Action Force - "Going Under" Part 3
Combat Colin

Review: A nice tidy conclusion. It lacks some of the verve of the vignettes, but ties things together nicely. The bluff never really convinces, but the way Galvatron is outsmarted is nicely done. The first Earthforce arc is a hugely promising piece of work overall, allowing some very good character spotlights, without ignoring the action quota.

[*][*][*][*][*][*][*][0][0][0]

 

To UK #241 - #250 | Comics Guide Index | To UK # 261 - #270 |
 
 
[the-hub.co.uk]
[transfans.co.uk]
[oneshallstand]
[unicron.com]
[counter-x.net]
[ntfa.net]
[allspark.com]
[transformertoys.co.uk]
[tfu.info]
[botchthecrab.com]
[obscure_tf]
[tfradio.net]
 

[TFArchive button]
Link graphics...

BOOKMARK US
Or in FF, hit Ctrl+D.