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Author Topic: Beast Wars and misc Transformers comic material  (Read 383 times)

Offline Silver Shocker

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Beast Wars and misc Transformers comic material
« on: February 05, 2021, 01:23:42 PM »
Dude, real talk. I just picked up the first issue of Transformers: Beast Wars by the writer of IDW's Ghostbusters, and on the first page we see the Tripredacus Council and learn Beast Wars Megatron's original name, and I'm reading this [Jason Aaron's Avengers] instead.
I saw the previews for that. Hot take,but I don't think they crashed on Earth this time around.

"I am a warrior. Let the battle be joined." (So close to the return of the Beast Wars Dinobot in cartoon form. As BW Megatron said "Sooo close"

I'd call that out as bullcrap, but actually there are several iterations of TF which feature the Beast Transformers on planets other than Earth, and the original Beast Wars had a few tricks to throw people off ("One moon now?)

That crap about the Nemesis having a Transwarp drive and a Fusion Cannon capable of killing a god easily was some bush league writing though - I choose to not think less of the great Simon Furman and assume the original plan to salvage the Transwarp cells from either The Ark, the Darksyde, or one of the Spider's many lairs, and that the finale got rushed for time. And I know it was because they cut them returning G1 Megatron's spark and putting the Transwarp cells into Shuttle Omega Delta and cut a cameo by Ramjet, Dirge and Thrust on board the Nemesis). In fact, diving into the Wiki page for the finale reveals that they had to condense an entire fourth season into a two parter when it didn't get a fourth season - and it shows, epic as that finale was - and they were specifically told to give the Maximals a definitive ending (Beast Machines wasn't in the works at the time). Plus I don't have to think worse of Furman because the wiki reveals that Furman's job was to handle the G1-specific material while showrunner Bob Forward handled all the Beast Wars-specific material - in particular Dinobot II.

I did skim the second scene of the comic, and Dinobot insisting on not killing those who can't defend themselves as dishonorable is an interesting take, but technically most of the character deaths in BW were indirect and Dinobot never killed anyone, so it gels. 

Also while I'm on the subject, I don't care what the official canon says - Inferno and Quickstrike aren't dead. The Preds came back from just being blown into separate parts countless times (Waspinator especially) and Inferno came back from far worse. Infact almost the entire Pred cast in the S3 Premeire work together to do this (a crowning achievement for those scrappy underdog Predacons as far as I'm concerned).  And Tarantulas and Ravage WERE alive in the comic continuations.

Oh and while I'm on the subject I HATE the idea of adding newly original Maximals and Predacons to the book when you could just as easily add Tigatron, Airazor, Inferno and Blackarachnia right off the bat. My brother and I had about forty BW toys when we were kids. We would buy them for each other as birthday and Christmas gifts and raid the clearance isles for them and I still didn't get a dragon Megatron, BW Silverbolt or a Scorpinok (I do have the McDonalds Transmetal version - yay me  :rolleyes:), and I didn't get a Blackarachnia until the new Kingdom one arrived in the mail this week - by the Matrix, it's robot mode is perfect. You can even apply blast effects to the spider legs to replicate the machine guns from the show.  :D. So I KNOW you have enough characters. And why create a female version of Bat Optimus Primal and a new snapping turtle Pred when Sonar is canonically female and Snapper exists?

Oh, and while I'm gushing about the toys - I want Thrustinator SOOO BAAAD!

There's also a lot of other really nifty Beast Wars and Beast Machines figures aimed at the collector's set: Strika, Obsidian, pre-Earth Protoform X aka Rampage, Darksyde Waspinator, Two different pre-Earth versions of Tarantulas, the recolors of Terrorsaur (I had Lazorbeak - who was purple - and the Transmetal one; I was happy with them) and Pre-Transmetal Tarantulas look fantastic. ~If I had a million dollars.... And if only Alpha Strike from Transformers Cyberverse got a proper figure. Also OMG there's a figure of Clobber. We wants it!

I'm shocked there isn't a show-accurate BW Scorpinok yet - The original toy isn't much better than the Red Doublepunch recolor OR the Yellow Sandstorm recolor. If that gets a Kingdom remake, that'll be another one for the collection for sure. If the official promo art for the toyline, he may very well be getting one (his claw can be seen off to the side) along with Polar Claw of all characters.

While I'm on the subject, a Beast Machines question for my fellow Beast Era fans - who do you think Strika and Obsidian should have been? ("We've been duking it out with two of the best strategists in military history") My answer? Cyclonus and Scourge. Both characters were cool in their own right and Strika made it into Transformers Animated and Cyberverse and was done well in both, and both of them appeared in the comics many times over, but having those two in the show instead of people we've never heard of would have a real feather in Beast Machines' cap.

Shockingly, the extended lore doesn't retcon Strika and Obsidian into any preexisting characters - which is shocking considering they retconned Sentinel Zeta Prime into the G1 cartoon and fans are convinced Ultra Magnus or Ironhide was Dion from "War Dawn" Hasbro denies it. "You thought it was a more famous G1 character - but it was me, DION!". The episode of Energon that didn't get dubbed ("Return, our Scorpinok", aka "Scorpinok's Scars") - which I have in fact now seen in subtitled form, and it was indeed quite good and important to the plot - all but said Energon Scorpinok was repurposed from Armada Thrust - they even had the same voice actor in the dub!

Checking the wiki, apparently Obsidian was going to be called Blitzwing. Ok, see then you can make it Soundwave and Blitzwing. I would have loved for it to be Soundwave and Shockwave, but he did in a cut scene from the animated movie (his appearance in the third season was an animation error).

Due to BW's considerably light presence in the franchise compared to G1-inspired content, it always fascinates and excites me whenever characters from it or Beast Machines pop up elsewhere in the franchise, and I compiled a truly enormous amount of fun trivia about it's place in the greater franchise, but it would make this post enormous, so I'm going to include a few small highlights:

- The Japanese dub of Beast Wars, among many extensive alterations to the script and voice track, made a brand character out of the Predacon ship's computer, Navi (derived from Megatron asking for "Navigations), who took part in multiple coups, and in a very goofy, fanservice-filled manga, Tarantulas made her into a Predacon by giving her a body, which turns into a dolphin How neat! (the manga, despite the amazing crossovers features in it, is far less narratively interesting than you'd think - the whole thing is a dream)

-The Japanese dub of Beast Machines spoiled the identity of all three of the initial Vehicon Generals by giving them the same voice actors and mannerisms as the characters who were turned into them.
-Tankor was, unsurprisingly, based on the Hulk (TANKOR PULVERIZE). Silverbolt is based on Batman. (specifically, BW Silverbolt is an oldschool Adam West style, while Beast Machines Silverbolt is "The Dark Knight)

-Waspinator has a Go-Bot based on him called Buzzerbot, which turns into a motorcycle.

-There's a Robots in Disguise 2015 iteration of Waspinator that appears in the mobile game. I like his design.

-In the extended lore, Transmetal Waspinator (and yes, I own the toy) is used to represent Starscream in Waspinator's body.

-Quickstrike inspired the design for the Transformers: Dark of the Moon character Darksteel (the character designer did this because he's a fan of snakes)

-The mobile games TF: Forged to Fight (a fighting game) and Earth Wars (a strategy game) have an enormous number of characters from across the TF franchise to unlock, BW included. Primal (and here), BW Megs, TM1 Cheetor, Dinobot, Dinobot II Waspinator, (and here too) Rhinox,   Scorpinok Tarantulas Blackarachnia, and Tigerhawk are in it, and many of them look good if not fantastic. Unfortunately, Megs isn't one of them - he's based on the 10th anniversary action figure.

« Last Edit: May 27, 2021, 07:52:11 AM by Silver Shocker »

Offline Silver Shocker

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Re: Beast Wars and misc Transformers comic material
« Reply #1 on: February 15, 2021, 10:43:09 AM »
I have finished Beast Wars #1 and am in the mood to talk comics again.

First off, a more direct response:

I saw the previews for that. Hot take,but I don't think they crashed on Earth this time around.

I have the answer for you:

Spoiler: ShowHide
Incorrect. It's definitely Earth, very much as it appeared in the original cartoon. This time around they allude to (but do not directly state) the hidden purpose of the Golden Disc, and also the Energon crystals are still here. We also see the "two" moons. And in the interview in the back of the book, they outright say the floating island will be featured in the book.

Other neat stuff:
-Rhinox being depicted as Primal's steady hand, giving him advice and encouragement.
-Rhinox and Rattrap being named as such before they get to Earth, which is an odd departure from the show.
-The funniest bit from the comic is a bit where Rattrap, being Rattrap, bashes Primal only to be told the comm's still on, then he says "Ah scrap." The funny thing there is tv show Rattrap wouldn't give a scrap and would say that kind of thing directly to Primal's face anyway. The other Maximals saying "Shut up Rattrap" was literally a running gag in the show.
-Waspinator looking like a combination of his Dawn of Future's Past design and Wasp from Transformers Animated, which I like. Also he talks in his buzzing style before getting the Wasp form.
-The inside of the Axalon looks absolutely nothing like it does in the cartoon. This bothers me far more than it probably should.
-Waspinator is the helmsmen on the Darksyde. This amuses me for some reason. One possible reason is that according to the TF Wiki, in the cartoon Waspinator never once made a successful landing while in Beast Mode, either being attacked first or transforming first.

The book is, in a way that justifies its $5.99 cover price, chock full of extras in the back. Including every variant cover, concept art, a text-based afterward from the editors and two different interviews chock full of juicy tidbits, such as:

-When jettisoning the Status Pods, Protoform X's pod can indeed be seen making an early bird cameo. Nice touch.
-Dinobot's initial falling out with Megs will be different than in the cartoon.
-The floating island and the Vok will be in the very first arc (In fairness, in the cartoon pilot I seem to recall they spotted some Vok artifact or another to be attended to later)
-Burnham (the writer) admits to being a Johnny-come-lately, watching the show for the first time on streaming, which directly resulted in him getting the gig.
-He also directly addresses why Nyx and Skold are here. He wanted characters who didn't already exist in the lore so us fans would have no way of knowing ahead of time what will happen to them. Burnham also claims having a female Maximal early makes up for having Blackarachnia show up later. I once again call bullcrap because A) BA was a Maximal protoform and could be introduced from the start if they wanted, as a Maximal OR Predicon. 2) Airrazor could be brought in early, especially given her limited screentime in the original cartoon and the fact that she's getting a new toy in the new toyline alongside BA  and 3) Sonar is canonically female in IDW lore, and Sonar also turns into a bat. Since Sonar is a Transmetal 2, you could have used this exact same design and just called the character Sonar.
-The artist confirms Skold (a snapping turtle Predacon) was directly based on Snapper from the toyline, and that Skold is a female and is also based on Strika from Beast Machines.
-The concept art shows the vehicle forms for the Cybertron designs for the Maximals, but not the Preds. Not sure why, since neither use their alt-forms.
-In the comic version, Megs and the Preds bomb all of the other docked Transwarp vessels to prevent them being pursuit, thus providing a greater explanation for the Axalon being the only ship available to chase them. Nice touch.
-So far, there's no hint that Tarantulas is anything but loyal to Megs. But in fairness, Tarantulas being treacherous didn't drop in the show until, if I recall correctly, at least halfway through S1 ("Spider's Game", the episode that introduced Inferno and ends with Tarantulas claiming "This planet is doomed" and that he wanted an escape ship)

Offline HarryTrotter

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Re: Beast Wars and misc Transformers comic material
« Reply #2 on: February 15, 2021, 11:04:11 AM »
I got around to the first issue. By the time they scan for alt-forms,I figured it was probably Earth.

Predacon council members are named,Im pretty sure thats a first.
Waspinator was a Titan pilot in the IDW comics,so that might be a reference to that.
Also,this being IDW,I hope it doesn't get canceled before time. That why I fear commiting to it.
''Even our origin stories have gone sour.''
Jon Farmer

Offline Silver Shocker

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Re: Beast Wars and misc Transformers comic material
« Reply #3 on: February 15, 2021, 11:08:26 AM »
Waspinator was a Titan pilot in the IDW comics,so that might be a reference to that.
Good to know.

Predacon council members are named,Im pretty sure thats a first.
If nothing else, they were named in the convention toyline, and in the Beast Wars Sourcebook, which did do the write up as if the guys from the toyline and the guys from the cartoon were the same guys. The name "Tripredacus Council" being dropped more than once in the cartoon did imply that their names would indeed be Ramjet, Sea Clamp and Cicadadon (though again, pre-alt-modes. Though then again, in TFA Bumblebee and Wasp were named such before coming to Earth, so I guess it's arbitrary).
The Magnaboss Council were treated the same way in the Sourcebook and Dawn of the Predacus (and Ironhide indeed makes a cameo in this issue)

Megatron co-opting the name of the original did get a nod in The Agenda Pt2 ("You have his name, but not his army") but it does feel appropriate (the Tripredacus described Megatron as "Shrewd, but a rogue"), and an infamous Gee-Oner in the fandom who hated Beast Wars and got referenced in the official product more than once insistently called BW Megs "The Imposter" or "The Pretender" or such.
« Last Edit: February 15, 2021, 11:12:44 AM by Silver Shocker »

Offline Silver Shocker

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Re: Beast Wars and misc Transformers comic material
« Reply #4 on: February 25, 2021, 03:45:14 AM »
Gotta gush about this:

David Kaye, the voice of Beast Wars Megatron, did a read of the dialogue or Megs in the first issue of the IDW comic, while recording a podcast, and it is glorious, Yesssss...,.

He also did a fairly decent Tarantulas to set up the speech, and he did a good job at voicing two members of the Tripredacus Council (he seemed to not realize it was two different characters, and one of the other guys doing the read was going to interrupt him but stopped because he was clearly so into it. The character Kaye was reading for was Cicadadon, who was voiced by Scott McNeil in the cartoon - I think Kaye meant to be doing the second one who talks - Sea Clamp, who was voiced by Cheetor's VO with a higher pitched, raspier voice than the others)

His voice sounds a bit different - not as hammy or oafish as in the cartoon, more sinister and calculated - which may be due to 1) the fact that this IS 25 years after he first voiced the character and 2) not an official production, but it could also be because 3) The context of the material doesn't particularly lend to the take on Megs that he usually heard in the BW cartoon. Also the cough at the end following the end of the speech doesn't sound the same as the original cartoon, but I appreciate that he went for it anyway.

In any case, it was a real treat to hear.  :)