James Roberts wrote:(21) The last part of 'Remain In Light' is accompanied by a new four page short story. #CountdownTo21
James Roberts wrote:(20) The story's working title was 'Stronger Hearts Than Mine Lie Empty', after a Ballboy song: #CountdownTo21
James Roberts wrote:(19) Play before reading (thanks to Tumblr's face-of-vos for reminding me of its beauty): #CountdownTo21
James Roberts wrote:(18) "I've never bought into the notion of Primal infallibility. I think that sometimes, God gets it wrong." #CountdownTo21
James Roberts wrote:(17) At the end of the Lost Light's journey... another Morrissey song. I make no apologies. #CountdownTo21
James Roberts wrote:(16) The prose story is called 'The Sound of Breaking Glass', and it takes place in-between the events in RiL Pt 5. #CountdownTo21
James Roberts wrote:(15) Another piece of music to accompany the end of 'Remain in Light'. #CountdownTo21
James Roberts wrote:(14) "Welcome aboard." #CountdownTo21
James Roberts wrote:(13) Pt 5 of 'Remain in Light' was always going to be called 'There Is A Light That Never Goes Out'. Then everything changed. #CountdownTo21
James Roberts wrote:(12) Lucent en tenebris #CountdownTo21
James Roberts wrote:(11) "I'm sorry." "Thank you for trying." #CountdownTo21
James Roberts wrote:(10) Part 5 of 'Remain in Light' is subtitled 'This Calamitous Life' #CountdownTo21
James Roberts wrote:(9) There are spoilers on Page 1 and almost every page thereafter. I've never squeezed so many story beats into one issue. #CountdownTo21
James Roberts wrote:(8) The next in the MTMTE Listen Before Reading series (a classic best played on headphones) #CountdownTo21
James Roberts wrote:(7) 'Braindeath', 'Aequitas', 'speakeater' and 'ignite' are all words you'll find in next week's MTMTE. #CountdownTo21
James Roberts wrote:(6) "You wouldn't even SPEAK to him!" - a line that did not survive the final draft of issue 21's script. #CountdownTo21
James Roberts wrote:(5) "He must've gone through the portal..." #CountdownTo21
James Roberts wrote:(4) Remember: MTMTE #22 is all flashback. Chronologically, the last page of #21 is followed by Dark Cybertron. Just saying. #CountdownTo21
James Roberts wrote:(3) Tomorrow, two years after leaving Cybertron... contact is made. #CountdownTo21
James Roberts wrote:(2) MTMTE 21: Three goodbyes, one hello. #CountdownTo21
James Roberts wrote:(1) I've waited 2 years to play this to you. If your heart doesn't melt at 1:26, you and I are through #CountdownTo21
PAGE 1: After the events from Rage of the Dinobots, was it easy to start an all new ongoing like this and run with it?
MAIRGHREAD SCOTT: Mike and I had always hoped for an ongoing to come out of Rage; the world is so rich it seemed a shame not to explore it. Of course, there is a significant time jump from the mini-series to Beast Hunters so that we can (eventually) bring in the cast of the TV show. That made picking out exactly when and where to start a bit of a challenge, but this has been a really fun story to write over all.
PAGE 2: How scarred are the Dinobots from their experience in ROTD? Has the current situation on Cybertron forced them to change much and adapt?
MAIRGHREAD SCOTT: I wouldn’t say the Dinobots are so much “scared” from their time in ROTD as liberated by it. They have a chance to build a life on their terms at the end of Rage. Issue 1 is about what their new roles are in society and how they’re coping. Of course, there are always challenges to face, but I think the Dinobots are definitely moving forward rather than falling back.
PAGE 3: Considering his position now, is Grimlock the one facing the greatest of challenges from everyone else on the planet? Even though most are struggling to survive more than he is?
MAIRGHREAD SCOTT: Grimlock is dealing with the hardest part of being a leader: that not everything is in your control. Since he’s a ’Bot striving for control as much a possible in his personal life (Remember his problems with his Dino-mode in Rage?), any problem he can’t immediately solve is really difficult for him to cope with. And since he runs the last real city on Cybertron, there’s a lot he’s not going to be able to solve.
PAGE 4: Are you finding the challenge of writing an ongoing series as opposed to a mini-series more vigorous or demanding than what you may have initially believed?
MAIRGHREAD SCOTT: On the contrary, I am first and foremost a long-format writer. I’m always looking to explore every nook and cranny of continuity. Although I love the cleanliness of a single arc mini-series, it’s the month-by-month floppies that let me really dig in to all of Cybertron’s forgotten corners.
This is it. The beginning of the end. The pieces are all now in play and Transformers: Regeneration One #91 kicks off the climactic confrontation(s) that will, like dominos falling, culminate with the shocking, searing uber-battle that is issue #100. In the meantime, #91 goes on sale this week, Wednesday May 15th (officially anyway… it was released to digital buyers a week early… or on time… and we knuckle-dragging print ‘n’ paper folk are behind a week… I don’t know. Anyway…), and as usual I present my delve into the darker recesses of the brain that produced it (ie. mine) with the pure and simple aim to tantalise and torment. BUT, should you prefer to read #91 with wide, agog, clear-of-potential-spoilers eyes, then abort now. Okay, so the first chunk of “Destiny”, our third RG1 arc, kicks off a certain amount of aftermath from the shocking events of Scorponok’s dark reign, as you’d expect, and a certain amount of rumbles of the gathering storm that will rock Cybertron and the Cybertronians to their very core (and yes, I mean that quite literally). Just about everyone is now either on Cybertron or en route to Cybertron, with a wide and complex set of festering motives. There’s Bludgeon and his nomadic group of Decepticons, armed with a WarWorld and a whole heap of Matrix-powered clone war machines, coming back to even several raw and burning scores, and Galvatron (displaced from an alternate future), determined to have what he most desires, and was denied in his own timeline — total domination of Cybertron (and in his way a certain ‘Cybertron’s Greatest Warrior’). And meanwhile, Hot Rod (acting C-in-C on Cybertron in Optimus Prime’s absence) has concerns more close to home on his mind, and a restless populace about to let him know exactly what they feel about his current scheme to reunify them with their distant (and feral) ancestors. It’s an incendiary situation about to combust in spectacular fashion, especially as one key player (so far not on the board) ramps up his involvement. Phew… and if you think you know where all this is going, think again. We’re about to toss in a huge and entirely unexpected curve-ball mid-arc, which will throw a bunch more stuff into the cauldron that is RG1 (and shatter a fair few pairs of trousers in the process). News of that soon! In the meantime, RG1 #91 hits stores in a mere two days, and you can view the official IDW preview here. Trust me, we are at the top of a really big rollercoaster, and the plunge downhill starts now…
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 18, 2013
GREGG BERGER AND FLINT DILLE TO APPEAR AT TFEXPO 2013 IN WICHITA, KANSAS!
Following last year’s success, TFExpo returns to Holiday Inn at Kellogg & Rock Road in Wichita on August 3rd, 2013 with two brand new guests!
Fans will no doubt remember Gregg Berger’s iconic performance as Grimlock not only in the G1 Transformers cartoon, but also last year’s immensely popular video game “Transformers: The Fall of Cybertron”! Gregg also contributed several other voices to Transformers, including Skyfire, Outback, and Long Haul. With a career spanning more than four decades, Gregg has lent his talents to many other programs as well, including G.I.Joe, Garfield and Friends, Duckman, and many, many more! Gregg will be making appearances and signing autographs throughout the day.
As a story editor and writer for both Transformers and G.I.Joe, Flint Dille was instrumental in crafting the stories of the characters we’ve loved for most of our lives. A writer and designer of video games and interactive novels, Flint recently returned to the world of the Transformers as co-writer of IDW’s digital comic “Autocracy”, as well as its current sequel, “Monstrosity”! Flint will be hosting a Writers Workshop at TFExpo 2013, as well as speaking and making appearances throughout the day.
This year, TFExpo is pleased to announce its very first EXCLUSIVE TOY UPGRADE SET! When a shuttle emerges from the far reaches of the galaxy, a new hero is born! NEBULA STARSHIP is ready to take the fight into the depths of space! This toy upgrade set includes a new head and wings to attach to your existing toy. This set will be given to everyone pre-registering with the TFEXPO ALLIANCE at the Ultra and Premium Levels. (PLEASE NOTE: The TFExpo Exclusive Toy Upgrade Set is an aftermarket accessory, intended to enhance the enjoyment of your toy. It is neither created nor endorsed by Hasbro, Inc. or Takara Tomy.)
Visitors to TFExpo 2013 will enjoy not only our guests and toy upgrade set, they’ll be able to shop in our Dealer’s Room, and enjoy presentations in our Panel Room throughout the day! Other daytime events will be announced as we draw closer to the show.
Following up last year’s dinner party, TFExpo is pleased to host the 2013 Dinner and Script Reading Event! Choose from plated entrées including Prime Rib, Chicken, and Vegetarian options. Dinner entertainment will include an exclusive script reading by our Guest of Honor, Gregg Berger! Live music will follow. And each guest will take home SURPRISE souvenirs! Stay tuned to www.tf-expo.com for further announcements about this event. Seating is limited and you WON’T want to miss out!
REGISTRATION IS OPEN NOW—JOIN THE TFEXPO ALLIANCE TODAY! Visit www.tf-expo.com to register, and keep checking back for updates as we get closer to the show! Also don’t forget to “Like” TFExpo on Facebook and follow us on Twitter!
How do these two stories tie in to the existing IDW "Transformers" continuity?
"Spotlight: Bumblebee" thematically ties in with what's happening in "Robots in Disguise" right now. "RID" is about Bumblebee's fall; "Spotlight: Bumblebee" goes back to his rise. It's very much a part of the ongoing comic book continuity of the "Transformers" comics we publish. You don't have to have read any of the other comics, but if you have, you'll see where it fits in to the ongoing tapestry.
"Fall of Cybertron" is part of the continuity of the video games and the "Prime" television show and the novels. The comic actually also leads in to our comic book series "Transformers Prime: Rage of the Dinobots," which bridges the gap between the game and the TV show.
You've also got a lot of cool stuff happening in your "Transformers" ongoing series, "Robots in Disguise," with a massive storyline reaching its payoff this spring. What's been going on in that title and what can fans expect in the next few months as Megatron plots his revenge?
Since issue #1 of "RID," we've been trying to establish a new status quo -- a difficult-to-maintain, tense, post-war peace. The idea has been, from the characters' points of view, to move past war -- to try to live together in some sort of harmony.
As you might guess, Megatron doesn't want that. He wants the old status quo -- he wants war, and he wants to win that war. It's a battle not of Autobot versus Decepticon, but of old versus new.
His plan, though, is big and brutal. The action gets bigger and bigger and just when you think it's as nightmarish as it can be -- it gets worse.
Q: We’re at the end of the TRANSFORMERS PRIME: RAGE OF THE DINOBOTS mini-series. How have you found the whole comic writing experience? Is there anything you’ve learned that you could use while writing an episode of TRANSFORMERS PRIME?
MAIRGHREAD SCOTT: It’s a different muscle, comics and TV, but it was a thrill to get stronger in another way. In comics, however much you streamline (a fight sequence, a dialog exchange), you can always streamline more and that’s a great habit for any medium. I will definitely cut with a deeper knife when I write TV.
Q: Would you say that you and Mike have achieved all of the goals that you set out for yourself in the telling of the mini-series?
MAIRGHREAD SCOTT: Never. There is always more to explore. We barely touched on the background of a lot of the Dinobots. We’ve only just set up the idea of living in this really cool world. What we did do was introduce some fantastic bad guys, hint at a whole new era of Cybertronian history, tell the fans who we think the Dinobots are, and tell a good story. That’s why I’m so happy about this new series, BEAST HUNTERS. With a longer series I think we can really show off the best aspects of this new world. Of course, that only happen is fans buy it, so make sure to pre-order, Dino-lovers!
Q: You’ve talked previously about the characters you liked writing for. Were there any that surprised you while the scripts were being written? Or did each one do what you thought they should do?
MAIRGHREAD SCOTT: I never knew how much I’d fall in love with Slug. It makes me feel curmudgeonly, but I love that he’s so grumpy because I almost never get to write someone like that. Even Ratchet is more of a team player than Slug. It was also a relief to write Sludge, who doesn’t have a ton of baggage. As much as I love the other Dinobots, Sludge is a breath of fresh air sometimes.
Q: Have you and Mike been keeping the other writers on PRIME fully aware of the events in the comic so they know the Dinobots continuity for when they appear on the series?
MAIRGHREAD SCOTT: Luckily, I work side by side with Duane and the other writers every day, so we are able to keep each other up to date. They know exactly where we are and where we’re going. But it’s very important for us to avoid PRIME chasing after us or us chasing after them. For now the Dinobots are all ours to play with and that’s just fine with me.
Q: What was the big highlight for you in the series? Is there any one scene(s) that stand head and shoulder above the rest for you?
MAIRGHREAD SCOTT: SPOILER ALERT FOR ISSUE 4! I love when Shockwave takes off Grimlock’s face. I really wanted it to have that Hannibal Lector feel and it came out perfectly.
Q: Have you had much of a chance to see how the fans have reacted to the mini-series and gauge their feedback?
MAIRGHREAD SCOTT: Yes. Actually, I'll take this moment to give a shout-out to the guys and gals at Moonbase 2. They did a great interview with us and it was a treat to talk with such big TF fans. Often, there’s this fine line of wanting to interact with the fans and giving them the space to work things out among themselves. If a fan tweets me (and you’re welcome to at @MairghreadScott), I’m always happy to respond, but I know I’d hate to post a critique on a board if I knew I was going to have to face down the author and get into a point-by-point debate every time I did so. Anyway it’s a long way of saying I stalk the boards but don't comment.
Q: If you weren’t a writer right now, do you know what career path you would have taken instead?
MAIRGHREAD SCOTT: Something a lot less fun. I can be anything by writing about them. Until Mad Scientists and Robotic Dinosaurs get their 401(k)s in order, I’ll stick to writing, thank you very much.
Q: Can we expect any more for you and Mike again on PRIME comics, if there should be any in the future?
MAIRGHREAD SCOTT: Actually, they just announced our new TRANSFORMERS PRIME: BEAST HUNTERS book! Order code from Diamond is MAR130375 so buy a bunch! Same great Dinos, now with more beasts and a new, super-accessible format that we’re very excited about. Keep your ears to the ground, TF Fans…
Q: Hi Michael! How is going there at Hasbro?
MICHAEL KELLY: Hello! Things are really busy here at Hasbro: lots of interesting things going on in our publishing department!
Q: The Transformers brand has been going from strength to strength these last few years. How much are you enjoying the comics that IDW are making?
MICHAEL KELLY: I think they are brilliant, and only getting better. The current series written by John Barber and James Roberts, Robots In Disguise and More Than Meets The Eye, are really breaking new ground. And not just in the dramatic aspects of the return to Cybertron and the political maneuvering, but also in the humor. I don’t recall laughing out loud as often as I do now when reviewing manuscripts. Both writers have really unlocked the inherent “humanity” of these characters, and I find it extremely entertaining. And that’s just the writing. Artists Andrew Griffith and Alex Milne complete the storytelling with their work, each providing the perfect characterizations, mood, and environment for their respective books. This team delivers.
Q: When you started out in your position as Director of Global Publishing, are any plans you made where you thought they would be now or have they been exceeded?
MICHAEL KELLY: Ha! Well, if you’ll allow me to paraphrase an old military saying, no plan survives contact with a bunch of creative people. What was important to me when I started managing Hasbro’s publishing business was to ensure that we were maximizing the talents of the creative people our publishers bring to the table. I made it clear to IDW from the start that I wanted them to push the envelope, to shove me out of my comfort zone. If you start with a plan that takes you from point A to point B, and stick to it no matter what, you may never realize that a side trip to C is really worthwhile. Mind you, that doesn’t mean I haven’t had to reel them back in from time to time: the integrity of the brand is always first and foremost. But you can’t stifle creativity from the outset; sometimes you have to let the story take you where it wants to go.
Q: You oversee the comics that IDW make for Transformers. Are you constantly surprised by what the material you are reading?
MICHAEL KELLY: Well, “surprised” probably isn’t the right word exactly, because I’m involved in development from the concept right through to production, so I always know where we are going. I would say that I’m constantly impressed by the ability of our creative teams: the editors, the writers, inkers, and colorists, who manage to tell new and compelling stories month in and month out. After 30 years of TRANSFORMERS stories, there’s always a risk of repetition. But these talented people keep finding new and unique situations for our characters to confront, and that makes for seriously engaging reading.
Q: Is there any IDW book that has been made that you feel stands head and shoulders above all of the others?
MICHAEL KELLY: I added our comics business to my overall publishing responsibilities about one third of the way into the All Hail Megatron run, so that series will always have a place on my list. Honestly, though, it isn’t an easy question to answer, because there’s such diversity in what IDW has done, and so much of it is interesting and entertaining for various reasons. But certainly Last Stand of the Wreckers looms large, and I enjoyed the digital project Autocracy for its unique view of Optimus before his ascension to Prime as well as its remarkable artwork by Livio Ramondelli. And I can’t say enough about how much I’m enjoying the current run of Robots In Disguise and More Than Meets The Eye. Those are both just plain fun.
Q: Have there been many instances where you’ve had to veto a story that IDW wanted to make?
MICHAEL KELLY: In all honesty, no. First of all, IDW has been a fantastic steward for our brands. I can rely on John Barber (and Andy Schmidt before him) and all the guys on the team to present stories that are meaningful and faithful to the tenants of our characters, and to always have imaginative and innovative ideas. So much fun working with everyone at IDW.
Second, I don’t view it as my job to respond to an idea with a simple “yes” or “no.” Instead, if there is something that doesn’t quite fit, or maybe takes the story in a direction that may not work over the long run, I look at it as the starting point of collaboration with IDW and the creators. We develop what works, and we discard what doesn’t. In the end, I like to think we come up with a better result that drives the story forward. I’d be disappointed in myself if I just rejected something outright.
Q: Any favourite character arcs that have leapt out for you from the last 7 years worth of IDW stories?
MICHAEL KELLY: One of the challenges about writing for TRANSFORMERS, in my opinion, is that it can be easy to slip into simple character types. The nature of the underlying story lends itself to black & white comparisons, good vs. evil, honorable vs. deceitful, etc. What I enjoy most is when creators give genuine depth to the characters. Nothing is all good or all evil; everything has elements of both. So my favorite character arcs have always been the ones that show that inner conflict. I love what IDW and the creators have done with Thundercracker’s reflection and self-doubt, Bumblebee’s reluctant leadership, and even the inner struggles of both Optimus and Megatron. These are 3-dimensional characters, and I’m really pleased that the creative team embraces that, because the characters are at their most compelling when they are relatable.
Q: Are there any other Hasbro brands that IDW do comics of that really stand out for you?
MICHAEL KELLY: The first project that I managed from the very beginning was the re-launch of G.I. JOE back in 2008. That series, and in particular the COBRA books, have my fingerprints all over them. I’m immensely proud of what we did together on those books.
And just wait until you see the new My Little Pony comics. Sheer awesome.
I can’t comment on the Dungeons & Dragons and MAGIC The Gathering comics IDW produces, because the creative process for those is managed by my colleagues at Wizards of the Coast. But I hear great things, which doesn’t surprise me given the people involved.
Q: In overseeing all of the comic’s material that you do, what is greatest challenge is making sure everything is right for the different brands?
MICHAEL KELLY: The real challenge comes in keeping the various continuities within each brand straight. At any given time, I’m reviewing as many as 4 different TRANSFORMERS continuities and 3 separate G.I. JOE continuities. So it takes a lot of attention to detail to ensure that I’m not carrying one storyline over into another. It isn’t hard to fall into the trap of “hey, didn’t that guy die in issue 7?” Keeping all of that in line takes a lot of real estate in my brain. But so far I haven’t had the problem of wondering why Pinkie Pie isn’t planning Bumblebee’s birthday party. Though come to think of it, that would be an epic party.
Q: Where do you see things with the Transformers brand a few years down the road?
MICHAEL KELLY: There are so many stories still to tell in this franchise; I mean it when I say we are just getting started. We’ve got a great thing going on in IDW’s interpretation of our Generations line, and of course we’ve got a ways to go before Regeneration One wraps up. I expect a lot of twists and turns there. And remember, we’ve only scratched the surface of the PRIME continuity, which has a lot of rich storytelling still waiting to be discovered. We’ll start to see a lot more from that storyline in 2013 and onward.
Q: Michael, thanks for taking the time to do this Q&A. The last thing I wanted to ask was, out of all the Hasbro properties, which one would you personally like to bring into comics, which currently aren’t being published?
MICHAEL KELLY: Well, I’d be tipping my hand if I gave a direct answer to that question. Let’s just say that we’ve got a lot of things in the works right now, at various stages of development. Keep an eye out; you never know when we’ll be announcing the next big thing from Hasbro publishing.
News Categories: View All Categories, 3rd Party News, Auctions, Book News, Cartoon News, Collectables, Collector's Club News, Comic Book News, Company News, Contests, Editorials, Event News, Game News, Heavy Metal War, Interviews, Knock Offs, Media, Movie News, People News, Podcast, Press Releases, Reviews, Rumors, Sightings, Site Articles, Site News, Sponsor News, Store News, Toy News, Transtopia