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- Sideways is an Autobot, a Decepticon, and an agent of Unicron in the Robots in Disguise continuity, the Unicron Trilogy continuity family, and the Robot Masters portion of the Generation One continuity family.
Sideways is the consummate con-artist. He is misleading and deceitful in everything he does, and he lives for the look of shock and betrayal on his victims' faces when they realize he's played them for fools. When the displaced population of Planet X allied themselves with Unicron to avenge themselves on Gigantion, this treacherous nature made him the perfect robot to pull off the ultimate act of treason - an attempt to sow confusion between Autobot and Decepticon to prevent them from uniting to oppose his dark master.
We're still not quite sure what the heck he actually is.
- Japanese name (Micron Legend / Robot Masters): Doubleface, yeah, knowing that is his name and get surprised when he turns traitor...
- Japanese name (Galaxy Force): Noisemaze
- Polish name (Armada): Krętacz
- Hungarian name: Mellékút ("Detour")
- Russian Cybertron name: Otshelnik (Отшельник, "Hermit")
Sideways first appeared as a beam of light from the sky striking a large Earth city near the Autobot base. An enigmatic warrior, he appeared to side with the Autobots, helping Hot Shot by watching his back during a confrontation with Scavenger. When asked to reveal himself, he transformed, his rider quickly splitting and becoming a helmet that covered his entire head. He claimed to be Sideways, a drifter who just wandered into the conflict. While he gave the human kids Billy and Fred rides in cycle mode to keep them entertained, Hot Shot and Red Alert as well as Rad and Alexis were suspicious of the motorcycle's motives, especially his close attention to the Mini-Cons.
In the following battle, Megatron faced Sideways and Hot Shot alone, and managed to force the Mini-Con panel Sideways had (apparently) found out of his grasp. As the Decepticon leader began to warp away, both Autobots grabbed onto Megatron and all three were teleported to the Moon. To Hot Shot and Megatron's surprise, the Mini-Con panel was a fake, made to convince Megatron to retreat so that Hot Shot, spurred on by Sideways' encouragement, could defeat the Decepticons once and for all. Though both robots fought well alongside each other, with Sideways' expressing concern over Hot Shot's well-being, he eventually betrayed the young Autobot, by striking a deal with Megatron. He would pretend to be Megatron's hostage and in exchange, no matter what, Hot Shot would turn over the Star Saber sword. At first, Hot Shot did follow through, but reneged at the last moment by calling the Mini-Cons back to him. Sideways suddenly attacked Hot Shot, knocking the Star Saber out of his hands and kicking it to Starscream. He switched Mini-Con heads, revealing his allegiance to the Decepticons. Hot Shot was savagely beaten by the Decepticons, who stopped short of destroying him on the advice of Scavenger, who teleported the young 'bot back to the Autobot base. Once Sideways' loyalty to the Decepticons seemed to be confirmed, he began manipulating them and playing them against each other to suit his mysterious goals.
One of these goals was the replacement of Megatron as Decepticon leader after a series of significant losses. Sideways sowed the seeds of rebellion within the Decepticon ranks, subtly turning Starscream against Megatron and convincing Megatron of Starscream's imminent treachery. The situation came to a head when the two Decepticons fought outside their base, but Sideways then realized Megatron would never execute Starscream for his insubordination, exposing an ever-constant weakness within the Decepticon command structure. After the battle, Sideways mused that this weakness would come back to haunt Megatron one day, and would be his ruin. Fortunately though, this incident somehow served to solidify the Decepticons as a unit, giving them much greater morale and cohesiveness, and achieving Sideways' aims of giving neither faction in the conflict a clear advantage.
Shortly thereafter, Sideways tried to hack the Autobot base computer, only to encounter the children attempting to destroy the equipment to stop Sideways. He transported them to a digital universe, where they saw the coming of two new combatants. He tried to threaten them into handing over the Street Action Mini-Con Team, before the kids realized that as this wasn't real, he could not harm them. Sideways then apologized to an unseen master, shortly before the children escaped the digital universe, chased by an unknown entity.
The Decepticons began to distrust Sideways, suspecting he was not what he seemed, and realized he was manipulating everybody in the unit. Caught out by Thrust and the other Decepticons while communicating with his unseen master, Sideways panicked and attempted to escape, but not before he was confronted by Megatron and sliced in half with the Star Saber sword. Sideways simply reformed each time, reconnecting his parts and absorbing laser blasts from the other Decepticons. Megatron, in fury and disgust, hacked Sideways to pieces and he was seemingly destroyed... or so they thought. Sideways had entered trans-phase mode, rising in the form of a twisted nanite creature before the Decepticons' eyes, declaring that the Star Saber sword and Skyboom shield were merely toys to him, as he was near-invincible. He said there were millions of Mini-Cons left to be found, and challenged Megatron to see who would find them first, before flying off to parts unknown.
After his "demise," he would return frequently on computer screens through trans-phase mode to continue his mysterious goals. He convinced the Decepticon Thrust to secretly betray Megatron, and gather the three legendary Mini-Con weapons - the Star Saber, Skyboom shield and Requiem Blaster in order to revive the planet-eater Unicron.
As Unicron revealed himself to the people of Cybertron Sideways himself was revealed to be a puppet of Unicron, and ultimately was destroyed by the Requiem Blaster, wielded by Optimus Prime in a battle in Unicron's core.
Sideways made his return two decades later, as a faction-swapping agent that chose to manipulate those who'd recognize him in secret. He latched onto Starscream, who had no memory of the Unicron Battles, and manipulated him into obtaining the Omega Lock.
This goal, however, was never to be accomplished. While on Gigantion, the Planet X duo got caught up in a battle between Starscream and Galvatron. This resulted in the two, along with Starscream, being blown into another dimension. They all seemed to get along quite well. Somehow.
Sideways and Soundwave were later seen together back in normal space.
As mentioned in the Planet X biography, servitude of Unicron eventually drives one to insanity or loss of self. Sideways seems to be suffering from this effect during the Cybertron story.
Nobody seems to remember Sideways for some reason. You can chalk that up to the Unicron Singularity. Yoink! (The Ask Vector Prime forum on Transformers.com notes that Sideways was preserved by Unicron's dark power after Armada.)
Dreamwave Armada comics continuity
Sideways was first seen working on a secret desert rocket site, guarded by Skywarp and Wheeljack, which was designed to launch a laser system in orbit. After the rocket was launched, he returned to Cybertron, and was present for the battle against Unicron... though what exact role he played in it is unknown.
(The Dreamwave "More Than Meets The Eye" profile book for Armada did list Sideways as a mysterious ninja, and a herald to Unicron. It is suspected that he was simply functioning as a sleeper agent in the mainstream DW Armada comic.)
Robots in Disguise
- Sideways vs. Axer (Mega multi-pack, 2002)
- The first Sideways toy is a yellow and black redeco (and minor retooling, from changes made to the mold for a Japanese Microman version) of Road Rocket, transforming into a Yamaha GTS1000A racing motorcycle with a light-up rear wheel suspension/buzzsaw weapon. He came packaged with Axer in a Wal*Mart exclusive two-pack.
- Despite being a character placed in a different continuity, he has been established to be the same Sideways as the character from Armada. Both on-package bios describe him as a "conscientious, ninja-like warrior" who is "mysterious and silent." Years later, Takara publicity materials for their Robot Masters line confirmed that Robots in Disguise Sideways is the same character as their Robot Masters Doubleface toy.
- Sideways w/ Rook and Crosswise (Super-Con, 2002)
- Japanese ID number: MX-01
- The second toy of Sideways was released in 2002 in Armada, transforming into a Cybertronic motorcycle, and was the first larger Armada toy to come with two Mini-Cons; Rook and Crosswise. Each Mini-Con could form a new head for Sideways, as well as reveal a faction sigil behind his clear-plastic chestplate in that mode. Their individual and combined robot modes were designed to act as riders when Sideways is in vehicle mode. His tailpipes become arm-mounted Powerlinx-activated pressure-launch missile launchers.
- Two variations of the Hasbro version of the toy exist. The first variation features the opposite Mini-Con heads revealing their intended faction logo. This was due to an error in the television series' animation which depicted Crosswise as the Decepticon head and Rook as the Autobot head. Hasbro made a running change so the toy reflected the series' faction alignments. The second variation changed the salmon on Crosswise to a more Decepticon-like purple. This toy was also released in the Japanese Micron Legend toyline as "Doubleface" shortly afterwards, featuring a color scheme on the cockpit of the bike that was closer to the anime appearance.
- In November of 2003, US Toys "R" Us stores (and other big retailers) had special bonus pack Max-Con (Deluxe) toys, which came with a single bonus Mini-Con attached to the card over their sticker, for less than the price as a normal Max-Con during Toys "R" Us' post-Thanksgiving-day sale. Like Blurr, Sideways could come with one of the Destruction Mini-Con Team members: Buzzsaw, Drill Bit, or Dualor and in another pack containing Highwire, Sureshock, and Grindor.
- It should be noted that the...armpit?...joints are extremely tight, making it nearly impossible to transform him, especially into motorcycle mode. Because of its tightness, some molds can have the plastic covering the metal strip break, rendering the arm loose.
- Doubleface (Robot Master, 2004)
- Japanese ID number: RM-19
- Doubleface, a purple, gray, and yellow redeco (and minor retooling, from changes made to the mold for a Japanese Microman version) of Road Pig, was released in Japan in 2005, transforming into a Harley-Davidson Electra Glide touring motorcycle with electronic light-up tailpipe/"blaster" weapon. It featured a fixed Decepticon logo, and was the second and last appearance of this character in Japan as of 2006.
- There is a minor variation to this toy; though both versions feature an "electronics warning" on the robot mode's butt, some versions use a clear-plastic sticker, while others have the text tampographed there.
- This mold was also used for Robots in Disguise Axer. It was planned for use in Generation 2 as Soundwave, but that toy never saw release.
- Sideways (Deluxe-Class, 2005)
- Japanese ID number: GX-01
- The third toy of Sideways released in the US was in the Cybertron toyline. Sideways in this line is a black and orange alien spacefighter with Cyber Planet Key-activated faction-switching ability (Autobot to Decepticon) and pop-out blades built into his battle shield. The toy features a translucent face with his signature horns. He comes with a Planet X style Cyber Planet Key; the US version has the Cyber Key Code "dj51" tampographed on the back.
- This toy was released in Japan as Galaxy Force Noisemaze, and no mention was made of a relationship to Doubleface / Sideways.
- This mold was also used for the Japanese DVD-exclusive Noisemaze Mass-Production Version and Universe Ratbat. The colouring scheme was changed from orange-and-black to violet-and-off grey, and the allegiance shields became Decepticon replacing Autobot and Predacon replacing Decepticon.
- A few times in the show, while he was on the Decepticons, he is seen wearing his Autobot head instead of the Decepticon. Right.
- According to "Ask Vector Prime", Cybertron Sideways is the same as Armada Sideways. But yet, he acts nothing like his Armada counterpart. If Sideways was in fact being controlled by Unicron, then it is possible that this is his "true" personality.
- The gimmick of his Mini-con heads appears to be an homage to the Headmaster technology.