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THE TRANSFORMERS: COMICS, BOOKS AND MANGA

IDW Publishing
(2005-now)
Devil's Due
(2003-2007)
Dreamwave
(2002-2004)
Club/Con
(2001-now)
Titan Books
(2001-now)
Marvel Comics
(1984-1994)
Japanese
Manga
Other Books
and Titles

MARVEL TRANSFORMERS COMICS GUIDE

Marvel US nav: US Intro | Story List | US #1-10 | US #11-20 | US #21-30 | US #31-40 | US #41-50 | US #51-60
US #61-70 | US #71-80 | Comics Magazine | Transformers Universe | Transformers the Movie | Headmasters
G.I. Joe and the TFs | US G2 Intro | G.I. Joe #138-142 | G2 Special | US G2 #1-6 | US G2 #7-12 | Cover Images

Transformers Universe

| #1 | #2 | #3 | #4 | Collected Edition |

Transformers Universe #1

[cover]
Cover: Herb Trimpe
Cover Date: December 1986

Writer: Bob Budiansky
Inkers/Embellishers: Ian Akin & Brian Garvey; based on model sheets by Marvel Productions.
Art Director: John Romita
Colours: Nel Yomtov

Later Reprinted In: Transformers Universe [US], Transformers Universe Vol. 1 [UK].

Contents: This issue contains profiles for Air Raid, Astrotrain, Beachcomber, Blades, Blaster, Blast Off, Blitzwing, Blue Streak [sic], Bombshell, Bonecrusher, Brawl, Brawn, Breakdown, Broadside, Bruticus, Bumblebee, Buzzsaw, Cliffjumper, Cosmos, Dead End, Defensor, Devastator, Dirge, Divebomb, Drag Strip [sic], Eject, Fireflight, First Aid, Frenzy, Gears, Grapple and Grimlock. Each profile detailed the subject's Allegiance, Subgroup [if applicable], Function, Debut [if applicable], Motto, Profile, Abilities and Weaknesses, as well as giving a drawing of the subject's robot and alternate mode or modes.

Notes: The mottos and text aren't simply plagiarised from toy tech specs - Budiansky wrote the original text for most of the tech specs up until around 1988, with the profiles retained in-house by Hasbro, Marvel and Sunbow as resources - it simply took until 1986 for the idea of putting them in a comic to come along. Budiansky has extended most of the profiles. This is the first time that Broadside [in America, at least - he made his debut in the UK in #85, a couple of months previously] and Eject appear in a Transformers comic.

Production Notes: Each issue of this four-part limited series was priced at $1.25.

Transformers Universe #2

[cover]
Cover: Herb Trimpe
Cover Date: January 1987

Writer: Bob Budiansky
Inkers/Embellishers: Ian Akin & Brian Garvey; based on model sheets by Marvel Productions.
Art Director: John Romita
Colours: Nel Yomtov

Later Reprinted In: Transformers Universe [US], Transformers Universe Vol. 1 [UK].

Contents: This issue contains profiles for Groove, Headstrong, Hoist, Hook, Hot Spot, Hound, Huffer, Inferno, Ironhide, Jazz, Jetfire, Kickback, Laserbeak, Long Haul, Megatron, Menasor, Metroplex, Mirage, Mixmaster, Motormaster, Octane, Omega Supreme, Onslaught, Optimus Prime, Outback, Perceptor, Pipes, Powerglide, Predaking, Prowl, Ramhorn and Ramjet. Each profile detailed the subject's Allegiance, Subgroup [if applicable], Function, Debut [if applicable], Motto, Profile, Abilities and Weaknesses, as well as giving a drawing of the subject's robot and alternate mode or modes.

Notes: This is the first time that Inferno, Metroplex, Outback, Pipes and Ramhorn appear in a Transformers comic. Optimus Prime gets two pages, and Jazz gets a Cybertron mode illustration.

Transformers Universe #3

[cover]
Cover: Herb Trimpe
Cover Date: February 1987

Writer: Bob Budiansky
Inkers/Embellishers: Ian Akin & Brian Garvey; based on model sheets by Marvel Productions.
Art Director: John Romita
Colours: Nel Yomtov

Later Reprinted In: Transformers Universe [US], Transformers Universe Vol. 1 [UK].

Contents: This issue contains profiles for Rampage, Ratbat, Ratchet, Ravage, Razorclaw, Red Alert, Rewind, Rumble, Runabout, Runamuck, Sandstorm, Scavenger, Scrapper, Seaspray, Shockwave, Shrapnel, Sideswipe, Silverbolt, Skids, Skydive, Sky Lynx, Skywarp, Slag, Slingshot, Sludge, Smokescreen, Snarl, Soundwave, Starscream, Streetwise, Sunstreaker, Superion and Swindle. Each profile detailed the subject's Allegiance, Subgroup [if applicable], Function, Debut [if applicable], Motto, Profile, Abilities and Weaknesses, as well as giving a drawing of the subject's robot and alternate mode or modes.

Notes: This is the first time that Red Alert [in the US, anyway - he appeared in UK #15 back in 1985], Rewind, Sandstorm [again, US only - he appeared in UK #85 in 1986] and Sky Lynx appear in a Transformers comic.

Transformers Universe #4

[cover]
Cover: Herb Trimpe
Cover Date: March 1987

Writer: Bob Budiansky
Inkers/Embellishers: Ian Akin & Brian Garvey; based on model sheets by Marvel Productions.
Art Director: John Romita
Colours: Nel Yomtov

Later Reprinted In: Transformers Universe [US], Transformers Universe Vol. 1 [UK].

Contents: This issue contains profiles for Steeljaw, Swoop, Tailgate, Tantrum, Thrust, Thundercracker, Topspin, Tracks, Trailbreaker, Trypticon, Twin Twist, Vortex, Warpath, Wheeljack, Wildrider and Windcharger, plus an appendix featuring Transformers The Movie characters Arblus, Arcee, Blurr, Galvatron, Hot Rod, Kranix, Kup, Quintessons, Rodimus Prime, Scourge, Sharkticon [sic], Springer, Ultra Magnus, Unicron, Wheelie and Wreck-Gar. Each profile detailed the subject's Allegiance, Subgroup [if applicable], Function, Debut [if applicable], Motto, Profile, Abilities and Weaknesses, as well as giving a drawing of the subject's robot and alternate mode or modes.

Notes: The Transformers The Movie profiles omit Abilities for Arblus, Arcee, Quintessons and Sharkticon, plus Weaknesses for Blurr, Cyclonus, Galvatron, Kup, Springer, Ultra Magnus, Wheelie and Wreck-Gar. This is the first time that Steeljaw and Tailgate appear in a Transformers comic.

Transformers Universe

[cover]
Cover: Ian Akin & Brian Garvey

Date: July 1987

Contents:
Material from: -
Transformers Universe #1
Transformers Universe #2
Transformers Universe #3
Transformers Universe #4

Production Notes: Several profiles were edited from the original mini-series, and Eject, Inferno, Pipes, Rewind, Sandstorm, Steeljaw and Tailgate were omitted for reasons unknown. With an introduction from Jim Salicrup.

Review: A solid and indispensable resource. The stable character models allow a better view of characters, and a sounder comparison, than the rather flashy poses in Dreamwave's less accomplished More Than Meets the Eye series. Most of the profiles are also superbly written, with highlights being Bluestreak, Blades, Buzzsaw, Dirge, Grimlock, Laserbeak, Mirage, Omega Supreme, Prowl, Red Alert, Ratchet, Shockwave, Skids, Smokescreen and Streetwise. The only letdown is the TF:TM appendix, which is shoddy and rushed, and it's hard to believe they're written by the same person. It really feels like Budiansky just watched TF:TM and sketched down what he saw, and the allocation of profiles to Arbulus and Kranix is a terrible idea. The low point is Arcee, defined entirely by her relationships with Hot Rod and Daniel.

Overall, though, the Transformers Universe is a must-have for anyone contemplating a fanfic, and a fine way of reading about the basics of most of the more popular Transformers.

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