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Raiders of the Last Ark

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Tannis development proceeding. Acquire headpiece, Staff of Ra, Abner Ravenwood, US.

A Decepticon attack on the Ark prompts the Autobots to activate the shipboard computer Auntie... which promptly threatens to destroy both sides.

Generation One (Marvel UK) > Issue # 18-21
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Marvel UK issues #18-21

Writer: Simon Furman
Art: Mike Collins, Jeff Anderson
Lettering: Richard Starkings; Aldrich (#19)
Colour: Gina Hart
Editor: Sheila Cranna

  • Originally published: May 18-June 29 1985


The Decepticons make their first attempt to overrun the Autobots and capture the Ark. Though the Autobots fight valiantly, Optimus Prime fears defeat is only a matter of time, unless the ship's defences can be activated. To that end, Prime leaves the battle and brings online Auntie, the ship's controlling AI. Megatron follows and is present when Auntie awakens... and brings the battle to a halt by magnetizing the ship's walls, leaving Autobot and Decepticon alike helpless. The damaged computer can no longer distinguish between friend and foe, leaving Prime and Megatron to plead their cases before it.

At the main battle site, meanwhile, Ravage and Windcharger alone are able to circumvent Auntie's magnetic field. With some reluctance, they team up and fight their way past a series of defences toward the computer core.

Prime explains to Megatron that Auntie will likely kill both sides; Megatron responds that he may be able to stop her, and begins building up power, drawing energy cross-dimensionally from a black hole. But before he can discharge it, Windcharger and Ravage burst in, engaged in combat with Guardian. While Windcharger handles the mechanoid, Ravage destroys Auntie.

Freed, Megatron decides it'd be a shame to waste all the energies he's accumulated. But before he can destroy anything, Windcharger uses his magnetic powers to blast Megatron out of the Ark and into the stratosphere, though he burns himself out in the process. The Decepticons retreat after their leader's exit, but Optimus knows it is but a short reprieve...


  • An opening recap of the Transformers' arrival on Earth shows Auntie computing that a suicide course into Earth is the only logical choice. In the original telling of that story, Optimus Prime reached that decision on his own.

Items of note

  • The Transformers are drawn straight off their toys, rather than the animation models that would become standard later on.
  • The Ark is here referred to as "the last of the great arks", implying a series of such vessels.
  • Like the previous two UK stories, this story's exact timing is unclear. It was originally printed between The Last Stand and The New Order when the Autobots and Decepticons were deactivated after Shockwave's arrival. It presumably takes place at some point during US Issue 3 or 4.

Covers (4)


18 cover


19 cover


20 cover


21 cover

    • UK issue 18 cover: Autobot/Decepticon battle, pencils by Mike Collins, inks by Jeff Anderson.
    • UK issue 19 cover: Optimus Prime and Megatron encounter Auntie, by Mike Collins and Jeff Anderson.
    • UK issue 20 cover: Windcharger and Ravage caught in the electric field, by Mike Collins and Jeff Anderson.
    • UK issue 21 cover: Megatron activates his anti-matter power, by Mike Collins and Jeff Anderson.


This is the only story from the UK comic that has never been reprinted in either the Collected Comics specials or the Titan Books collections but has been reprinted in IDW's Classics UK series in volume 1.


  • You know where the issue's title possibly derived from.

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