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Grudge Match!

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I mean, who would have thought Hasbro would go and use the name Divebomb?

Dinobots vs Predacons! Nuff said?

Generation One (Marvel UK) > Issue # 135 - 136
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Marvel UK issues #135 - 136

Writer: Simon Furman
Pencils: Jeff Anderson
Inks: Baskerville
Letters: Annie H
Colours: Steve White

  • Originally published: 10th-17th October 1987; Cover date ("off sale") 17th-24th October 1987


In Calusa, Florida O'Connor's Circus is performing when it is attacked by the Predacons. They charge through the main tent and the side shows, causing chaos all round. However Divebomb is not taking part, even though he was the first to admit his boredom.

Up on the big dipper track Divebomb thinks that scaring a few humans may be fun but isn't what he joined the Predacons for. He wishes for challenges worthy of the team, like Optimus Prime Prey! and Megatron Gone but Not Forgotten!. He contemplates returning to Cybertron, but this would prevent the others from forming Predaking. But what really eats at him is wondering about a foe who escaped - what happened to the original Divebomb?

Now called Swoop, the original Divebomb has recognised his old foe in a news broadcast about the Predacon attack. Swoop tells Sludge that it's the Decepticon who stole his name, but Sludge responds that Swoop has always said Divebomb was dead and the insult avenged. Swoop determines to settle things once and for all. Sludge wonders why Swoop is concerned by ancient history, but Swoop cannot say, as he told lies about the event and doesn't want to admit who saved him. Instead all he says is "The point, Sludge, is... is... he's still usin' my name!"

Note: The story What's in a Name? in The Transformers Annual released that year, takes place between panels at this point and tells the true story of what happened.

Later Divebomb is flying over swamps when he is attacked. He immediately recognises his old foe and they fight. Divebomb wonders if Swoop ever did tell the truth about their last fight and knocks Swoop from the sky. On the ground it is the Dinobot who is stronger. But both combatants are disappointed when the other four Predacons appear, declaring that they look after their own. They start beating up Swoop, though Divebomb himself wants no part of it. Swoop thinks things can't get any worse...

But it does. The other Dinobots arrive, also looking after their own. Grimlock knocks down Razorclaw with one kick and battle rages between the Dinobots and Predacons. Swoop is depressed and Divebomb taunts him, asking what will happen when he tells them the truth of what happened when Swoop tried to reclaim his original name. He threatens to do so now and Swoop declares he will kill the Predacon first. Divebomb is overjoyed and the two take to the skies to resume their battle.

Grimlock is also taunting, telling Razorclaw how the Predacons have proved weaker than expected. Sludge will keep going until he wears down Rampage, Slag is only softening up Tantrum and will soon turn on the heat, Snarl is demolishing Headstrong with his tail, leaving only Swoop and Divebomb. Razorclaw rises, transforms and attacks Grimlock, but is soon subdued.

Once again Divebomb proves superior in the sky and Swoop wonders what to do. Then he sees Grimlock and suddenly comes up with a plan. Swoop dodges Divebomb's missile so it instead just misses Grimlock. The Autobot leader picks up his sword and clips Divebomb's wings. Swoop lands, thinking how he's almost certainly sent Divebomb to his death and silence.

Divebomb realises what is happening and tells Grimlock he is being used and that Swoop has done it before. Grimlock is intrigued and asks what happened before. Meanwhile Swoop wonders if he isn't just making the same mistakes as before, relying on others then covering his tracks with lies.

Grimlock plays his trump card - he already knows about the battle on Cybertron, including about Optimus Prime. As Autobot leader, Grimlock has access to Prime's unlogged reports, but as a Dinobot Grimlock looks after his own and refuses to expose Swoop. Grimlock is about to crush Divebomb with a boulder, when Swoop charges up and declares he doesn't want others fighting his battles for him.

Shortly afterwards, the Dinobots watch as the Predacons limp away. Swoop explains that this way it will wipe the slate clean. And he now volunteers to tell the truth about the battle on Cybertron.

Razorclaw hands Divebomb a blaster and tells him he can quickly take out Swoop and scarper. But Divebomb responds "And where's the fun in that?" He never wanted the help of the other Predacons and could have killed Swoop many times but didn't. Because he's now having fun on Earth as his playmate is back and this is a battle he'll win in his own time.


Items of note

  • The story was inspired by a casual line in The Icarus Theory in which it was stated that Swoop's name on Cybertron was Divebomb. This was almost certainly written in ignorance of the Predacons in an era when even the Marvel UK office had very little info about future toyline developments, but now provides the basis for a conflict between the Dinobots and Predacons.


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