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Prime Directive (IDW) issue 3

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They have arrived.


In 1924, Captain Witwicky is held in the Psychopathic Institute for the Long-Term Insane (no, really. That's what it's called). He keeps raving about a war that will come to our world.

In 1935, one of the First Seven is shown the new Hoover Dam, including the new cryoblocks for Ice Man. The old man is retiring soon, and wants one last look at the cube. An aide asks if the old man believes that more of them will come. He does, saying that it's not a matter of "if", but "when".

In 2003, Sector Seven makes an attempt to secure N.B.E.-02 at his Virginia landing site, but ten minutes after landing, he is already gone. Realizing that the highway is nearby, the agents inform their superiors that the target is mobile. Heading for their mobile command center, the agents realize that N.B.E.-02 scanned a 1978 Chevy Camaro, then Transformed.

In Tranquility, Ron Witwicky is showing his young son Sam his family legacy: the personal effects of Archibald Witwicky. Sam is not very impressed, and Ron takes his dismissal of Captain Witwicky's successes very poorly. In St. Louis, Bumblebee gains access to the internet and looks up "Extraterrestrial sightings". Captain Witwicky's claims immediately attract his attention.

Meanwhile, Agent Simmons has been brought in to oversee the capture of N.B.E.-02. Simmons has a box containing energy similar to that given off by the Cube. Realizing that N.B.E.-02 is searching for the Cube, Sector Seven plans to set a trap for the N.B.E. when he detects the energy signature. Simmons is confident, saying that they've been preparing for this for over a century, and that nothing can possibly derail their plans.

Nothing except for Starscream, Blackout, and Barricade, that is, who just arrived on Mars and are eager to kill something...

Featured characters

(Numbers indicate order of appearance.)

Autobots Decepticons Humans


  • None yet identified.

Items of note

  • On the highway, the alternate modes of Generation One Optimus Prime, Ironhide, Trailbreaker and Robots in Disguise Scourge can be seen.
  • According to colorist Josh Burcham, the people depicted on the walls of the Sector Seven base in Richmond, Virginia, in addition to Robert Oppenheimer and William Hayward Pickering (who are both identified by the dialogue), are supposed to be Frederick Sanger, Jack Kilby and artist Don Figueroa himself. Apparently Don views himself as looking like a young Michael Keaton.
  • Before Bumblebee uses the computers in an internet café to access the internet, he watches the owner drive off in a car that looks like a cross between a classic Volkswagen Beetle and a New Beetle (artist Don Figueroa seems to have a problem with realistic car models), a nod to Bumblebee's G1 alternate mode.
  • Bumblebee uses a search engine called "Shwiggle", a parody of Google (and also an nickname for colorist Josh Burcham used by his uncle). It also has an additional function called "I feel Shwiggly". That actually sounds kinda disturbing.
  • The songs Bumblebee plays on his radio feature lyrics that are similar, but not quite identical to those of existing songs, possibly to avoid licensing issues. The original songs are:
    • Waiting (For a Girl Like You) by Foreigner
    • I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For by U2
    • Who Are You by The Who
  • Uh. How exactly does contact with Megatron grant precognition to Captain Witwicky? His vision of the coming war includes the exact automobile forms of Jazz, Ratchet and Starscream, a century before they exist.

Covers (4)

Let's see what you can see...

This article is in need of images.

Specifics: alt covers

all by Don Figueroa

  • Cover A: Bumblebee
  • Cover B: Uncolored sketch of page 2, in reverse
  • Cover RI: Uncolored sketch of cover A
  • Retailer Exclusive: Uncolored sketch of Barricade and Blackout


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