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Can the Autobots stop Starscream from ruling all of Cybertron? No. Because like Ultra Magnus, he 'cant deal with that now', because for once, he's not the traitor.
Just outside the temple at Simfur, Arcee and her crew contemplate their next move in saving their friends. Crosshairs suggests that they split into two teams; one to head back to Trypticon and cause a diversion, while the rest take on the rescue. Strongarm, Breakaway and Wingblade volunteer for the former, while Armorhide agrees to take a team to provide cover for the rescue party.
Down at the temple, Starscream marvels at what he has achieved. He looks over the crowd, seeing them not gathered out of fear or displaced loyalty, knowing no matter their previous allegiance, they will all bow before him as the new leader of Cybertron. He addresses the crowd, quickly putting down the efforts of their previous leaders, and how he has returned to rebuild Cybertron for them. All he asks is that they swear allegiance to him and his cause, to which the entire crowd readily does.
After that, he explains the purpose of the prisoners shackled to the All Spark; the five of them will give their sparks to reactivate the cube, and restore Cybertron to its former glory. Elita-One pleads with him to stop, calling his plan insane. But Starscream is resolute in his actions, and with the push of a button, the five "criminals" are terminated. Their spark energy is stored and, with another flick of a switch, Starscream activates the new All Spark... Only to find its not working.
Starscream has little time to contemplate why it has failed, before he realises he has bigger problems... Namely Dreadwing, who calls in his drones to surround the confused bot. Payload and Ramjet also show their true colours, siding with Dreadwing as he explains his actions. He saw the data from Frenzy, and decided he wanted it for himself. He brags about the size of his forces, and how easy it was to form this little coup. Starscream quickly rebukes, calling Dreadwing a novice and regretting ever saving him. However, Dreadwing doesn't let it faze him and orders his drones to sieze him and his remaining followers.
Arcee and the rescue party watches from the outskirts in disbelief; their job has just become a little harder. Clocker and Crosshairs theorize that the master switch must be at Trypticon, and perhaps Breakaway can deactivate it. Arcee makes her move, using her rifle to take out the fake All Spark with a mighty explosion. Dreadwing is not pleased, sending Ramjet and the drones to deal with the new intruders. Crosshairs and Armorhide hold the line, and Ramjet nearly runs the latter through before Crosshairs decapitates him.
Meanwhile, back at the temple, Starscream has had enough. He's furious that he let his lust for power blind him, as it did Megatron, and goes on the offensive. With the help of Thundercracker and Stockade, he takes out numerous drones before his commander notices Dreadwing is escaping. Starscream leaves the clean up in his subordinates hands and goes after the traitor, taking a surprised Divebomb along with him. Admiring the valiant efforts of the Autobots fighting below, he intercepts Wingblade's message to Arcee about deactivating the drones. His path clear, he searches Trypticon until he finds the traitor.
On board a starship, Dreadwing plans to escape to the atmosphere and reactivate the drones. His plans are put on hold as Starscream throws Divebomb onto the front of the ship, before blowing him to smithereens. He cripples the ship before boarding, threatening to kill Dreadwing before the ship crashes. Dreadwing states he only did what Starscream never had the bearings to do to Megatron, but Starscream is not swayed. Below them, Arcee pulls her team out of Trypticon to avoid the collision.
However, Dreadwing has one final ace up his handless sleeve... As the ship tumble sout of control, he activates the Space Bridge before teleporting away from the enraged Starscream. His screams of the traitors name are cut short as the ship collides, the ensuring explosion turning the Decepticon city into nothing but a smoldering crater before it's absorbed into the wormhole. Trypticon has fallen, and Starscream is gone.
Outside the city limits, Arcee and her crew observe the destruction. She notes that this could be the turning point in the war, but knows that if Starscream survived the explosion, he could turn everything around again. She vows to find him... And judging from the sight of the Thundercracker speeding away from the scene, she's not the only one.
Far away from Cybertron, on Mars, The disused Space Bridge antenna activates. The remains of the starship (As well as the explosion) comes crashing through the wormhole, obliterating it. While this happens, a confused but very much alive Dreadwing emerges. He marvels at his miraculous escape... Just long enough for Starscream to sneak up and tear his spark core out. The traitor addresses him as "Lord Starscream" before he finally goes quiet.
A damaged Starscream takes a moment to think about all that has happened. Dreadwing is dead, but his plan (Or possibly his followers) have failed. But he knows there are allies back on Earth, and he knows they will join with him. He will have his rule... No matter where it may be.
(Numbers indicate order of appearance.)
"You can't be serious! Let us go and we can help each other. They'll never follow you!"
-Elita-One tries one more desperate plea for mercy.
"Silence! Take comfort in knowing that your last actions will have saved so many of us. This is what you deserve."
-Lord Starscream rejects aforementioned plea for mercy.
"No... I'm in charge."
-Elita-One and Starscream.
"Who cares? I'm alive, I still func—"
-Dreadwing and Starscream, bringing the G1 goodness.
- None yet identified
- Whereas issue 1 had continued the grand tradition of Transformers fiction confusing galaxies with solar systems, Starscream's closing monologue in this issue, where he states that he has allies "scattered across the galaxy", keeps in line with Optimus Prime's opening monologue from the movie.
- Strongarm is shown without his battle mask, and he has a gaping hole in the side of his face.
- A Decepticon with a single optic alerts the others to the position of Arcee's team (and is killed immediately after by Arcee herself). This character was apparently called Vortex in the script but was jokingly dubbed Snitchotron by Chris Mowry.
Items of note
- Features the Transformers: Mosaic "More Than You Can Chew".
- Crankcase, Elita-One, Grindcore, Signal Flare, and Warpath——— Killed in the resulting power surge upon the activation of the new All Spark Cube.
- An unidentified character (Vortex or Snitchotron)——— Fatally shot by Arcee.
|Specifics: RI cover|
- Cover A: Starscream and others flying in space above Earth; art by Alex Milne & colors by Espan Grundetjern.
- Cover B: Starscream and the burning AllSpark; art by James Raiz & colors by Kieran Oats.
- Incentive Cover RI: Starscream photo cover.