|Marvel U.S. > Issue #36|
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|Marvel UK > Issue #143–144|
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A group of children are caught in the cross-fire of inter-Autobot politics.
Sky Lynx arrives in our solar system, answering a plea from old friend Wheeljack for help in overthrowing the current Autobot leader Grimlock, obsessed with locating and imprisoning Blaster, to the exclusion of fighting the Decepticons. When Blaster is located giving four Earth children a joy ride in the incapacitated form of Blast Off, the Ark immediately opens fire. To save the kids, Blaster orders Blast Off to stop and be picked up by the Ark, but one of the children tosses Blaster out an airlock to ensure that Blaster is not captured.
With Blast Off safely incarcerated on board the Ark, the children are discovered, and Wheeljack sees to their needs. Grimlock holds a trial, accusing the children of aiding a traitor, and sentences them to execution. This is a ploy to bring Blaster out into the open, but as the children are made to "walk the plank" into deep space, Sky Lynx rescues them instead.
When Sky Lynx enters a meteor shower too dangerous for the Ark to navigate safely, Grimlock leads the Dinobots outside to pursue the rogue Autobot. Meanwhile, Blaster successfully makes it inside the Ark, where the other Autobots practically beg him to take command of the Autobots from Grimlock. However, when the Dinobots surround Sky Lynx, Blaster surrenders to the Dinobots in order to ensure their safety.
- Originally published: January, 1988
(Numbers indicate order of appearance.)
- Jed's exposition about how Blaster controls Blast Off due to Allan putting the mode lock on him is in a Transformer style word balloon.
- On, page 7, Sammy opens Blast Off's airlock and throws Blaster into space, yet (sadly) neither he nor his friends are killed by explosive decompression.
- On the very next frame on page 7, Blaster emerges from Sky Lynx's airlock, not Blast Off's. (It's apparently pretty easy to get all those transforming space shuttles confused.)
- On page 18, Wheeljack reports that Sky Lynx has entered a meteor shower. Since the rocks are not within Earth's atmosphere, this is an inaccurate term. The rocks should ideally be referred to as "meteoroids" or, even better (given their size), "asteroids."
- Blaster surrenders largely because the Spacehikers' vacuum suits only had two hours worth of air, and it's about to run out. However, the kids are inside Sky Lynx, and later issues show the kids riding around inside him with no need for suits. This inconsistency is not explained.
Items of note
- References to other Transformers continuities/issues: This issue starts several hours before the end of the previous story, "Child's Play".
- Apparently Blast Off's vehicle disguise goes so far as to incorporate an airlock accessible from inside himself.
- Apart from the mode-locked and incommunicado Blast Off, this issue features no Decepticons.
- The show on the TV set in panel 7, page 9 is Sledge Hammer!, which also had a brief (two-issue) tie-in comic book published by Marvel.
- Although Grimlock says he doesn't intend to kill the children, he doesn't seem to do anything that would prevent them from getting killed, should his suspicion that Blaster will come to save them prove wrong.
- This issue establishes Sky Lynx as a Triple Changer of sorts, changing from space shuttle to dino-bird to lynx without ever splitting into two components as his toy does. The dino-bird mode still retains the four-legged undercarriage; this would not be the case later.
- Amongst the Autobots seen aboard the Ark are several one panel cameos by characters not previously seen in the US comic including Twin Twist and Sandstorm. Neither of them appeared elsewhere in the US Generation One comic, and in the UK comic both were established as members of the Wreckers operating from Cybertron and thus could not have been part of the Ark's crew.
- The plot threads of this issue are left hanging for some time. We don't find out what Grimlock does with Blaster until issue 41, and the fate of Sky Lynx and the Spacehikers isn't revealed until issue 44. This is at least partly due to the need to introduce new toylines; the issues in between feature all the new characters from the Headmasters miniseries coming to Earth, and the introduction of the Pretenders and Powermasters. The time is also used to deal with Goldbug's faction of Autobots (shuffling most of them off to limbo for a good half-dozen issues themselves), and to give us the completely tangential story "The Big Broadcast of 2006!" ... with all these characters, is it any wonder Budiansky began to burn out?
- UK readers had an even longer wait, as the gap also featured UK exclusive plot threads focusing on Rodimus Prime and Unicron in the post-movie era, Galvatron loose on present day Earth and Ultra Magnus and the Wreckers operating out of Cybertron, plus the Christmas story "Stargazing", meaning the Blaster/Grimlock storyline isn't continued until issue 174 and Sky Lynx doesn't show up again until issue 178. (Although the order was shifted slightly so "The Big Broadcast of 2006" came later.)
- In Grim Grams for issue #143, Grimlock discusses plot points in the UK annuals while expressing his dislike for a Dinobot Combiner, and shoots down a letter supposedly from Stylor to correct a typo which rendered Gort as Grot, saying he prefers the way Grot sounds.
- The UK issue 143 features Transformers A-Z for First Aid and Frenzy
- In Grim Grams for UK issue #144, Grimlock kindly corrects the spelling mistakes caused by some poor Mum's typewriter, attempts to explain some of the dumb stubbies mistakes in the Headmaster back-up stories, and again expresses his extreme distaste for the idea of a Dinobot combiner.
|Specifics: UK cover|
- U.S. issue 36 cover: Sky Lynx to the children's rescue by Frank Springer
- UK issue 143 cover: A giant claw about to grab Blast Offl by Martin Griffiths
- UK issue 144 cover: Grimlock leaping/falling feet first from the Ark by Barry Kitson and Robin Bouttell
- None yet identified.