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Battle Beneath the Ice

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Battle Beneath the Ice is a UK storybook set in Generation One continuity.
Bbti

Uh, guys? I hate to be the one to tell you this... But you're above the ice. Better luck next book cover.

Battle Beneath the Ice is notable for being set in the time before The Transformers: The Movie, and is set in late 2000.

Vital Statistics

ISBN 0-552-52402-6
Writer: Dave Morris
Illustrator: Nik Spender (painted)
Pagecount: 47pp

Major characters:

Originally published: In the UK by Corgi Books, 1987

Synopsis

Jeff Grey, Bill Gordon and Neil Travers are traveling to Antarctica, where two of their fathers work at the Federation of Western Europe's oil fields. When they arrive at Fossil Point Station however, they discover Jeff's father was called away by a discovery at the nearby drill site.

The three catch a ride on a transport plane, where Jeff encounters the Autobot Hot Rod, in storage and being transported to the same location. They bond over a mutual admiration for Hot Rod's mad driving skillz and a love of the Gus Gopher Show. When the plane is shot down, they find themselves stranded in a deadly blizzard, only to be rescued by the benevolent City-Dwellers.

The City-Dwellers' leader The Watcher takes them on a tour of the city, showing off its many technological marvels, before taking them to meet the excavation team Jeff's father is on (which is only just now reaching the city's entrance).

The Combaticons appear on the surface, investigating the wreckage. Apparently, it was Blast Off that destroyed the plane. Slingshot and Skydive go to fight them while Hot Rod and the humans continue their tour.

While exploring an illusion-room, they are approached by the Decepticon Ravage, who informs them the City-Dwellers shot down their plane, not the Decepticons. Their guide intervenes and is shot by Hot Rod's weapon, which only affects robots. The City-Dwellers plan to study the aggressive instincts of humans, Autobot and Decepticons in order to program them into themselves and conquer Earth.

Jeff suggests Ravage substitute his recording of the Gus Gopher Show for the footage of the Aerialbots and Combaticons fighting. Ravage likes the idea; it's sneaky!

When the City-Dwellers upload the 'combat data' into their robotic brains, they are instead reprogrammed to act like wacky cartoon characters. The invasion foiled, the Decepticons are reluctantly allowed to depart under a flag of truce, leaving Hot Rod wondering what could be accomplished if Autobots and Decepticons could work together without a common enemy.

Continuity

  • Because it is explicitly set in the intermezzo prior to the movie, this story is generally accepted to occur within cartoon continuity (or some version thereof). The characterization of the Aerialbots is notably cartoon-ish.

Comments/Notes

  • Battle Beneath the Ice was also the name of an episode of the Centurions cartoon series, a contemporary of Transformers which also had a toyline produced by Hasbro.

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