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Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee

Transformers News: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee

Saturday, December 28th, 2013 8:20AM CST

Categories: Comic Book News, People News
Posted by: Va'al   Views: 27,966

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Mairghread Scott, the writer for the upcoming Windblade comic that will introduce the fan-made character, has taken to her Tumblr to expand on some of the issues relating to Windblade being the only other female character in the IDW universe/continuity (as BH Chromia and Firestar are part of Aligned): she will be a cisgender woman in her own right, not a creation like Furman's Arcee. On this point, she also discusses IDW/Furman's take on Arcee, and the preparation she's undertaking to be as inclusive as possible in the new comic. Read some of the posts below, and head here for more!


gorgynoid wrote:Hey congrats on the new comic! I voted for a lady robot like 50 times on that poll. I really hope you're ignoring (or retconning) Jhiaxus "making" ladybots out of guybots. Peace, and have a great Christmas!


Thank you for voting 50 times. Don’t do it during any kind of real election, but thanks for doing it here. ;) I don’t want to spoil anything, but I would like to assure you that Windblade is not female by accident, or by force, or against her will, or just for kicks. That’s not how it works for biological women on Earth and that’s not how it’s gonna work on Cybertron. Anybody has a problem with that, you know where I am.


mryarra wrote:I am SO excited about how the Windblade comic is looking right now, and the creative team. There is a sore lack of ladies in the IDW verse and Windblade herself looks like she could make a really interesting character. Also, just as a heads-up, "biological woman" is considered to be a pretty transphobic term, and so really isn't a good way to refer to people.

Dang it, good point!

Okay, Internet…please, please know that I am doing all in my power to talk about the gender of non-reproductive alien robots in the most respectful terms possible, but it can get really tough. (ex. Is Arcee a transgendered woman even though she was made female against her will?).

The term “genetically female” seems wrong because they don’t reproduce (so don’t pass on genes) so I chose “biologically female” to convey the same sense in a more accurate way (ie most fans would say TFormers are alive, even though that is also debatable in science).

I have since been informed, by people wiser than I, that the technical term for Windblade would be a cisgender woman so I’m going to go with that unless someone knows a better term, or we can agree to invent one. Regardless, know that I am doing all in my power to make this character and her story something all TF fans can enjoy and celebrate together. My goal is always maximum inclusion, so should I stick my digital foot in my mouth again, please let me know so I can correct myself.

Til All Are One,
Mairghread
Credit(s): Mairghread Scott
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Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1537998)
Posted by welcometothedarksyde on December 28th, 2013 @ 10:34am CST
Does anybody else hate Windblade already? Her design sucks, and her story sounds way overthought
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538002)
Posted by Neurie on December 28th, 2013 @ 11:07am CST
Am I the only one who has always found that forcing sexuality on to robots has always just been a little tasteless?

I mean, sure it makes them more relatable to a target audience which traditionally was boys and now is a little more cross gender, but essentially these are robots who do not reproduce so there fore would be more asexual like worms, virus' or amoebas?

Robots have no need of sense of sexual identity even with self awareness they just are.

I'll still read the comic, but for me the sexualisation and focusing on gender takes me out of these stories. If I wanted love stories and exploration of deep issues relating to relationships there in I'd go read a Terry Moore book.

Im sure the writer will do a good job, just hope it doesn't alienate the installed fan abse whilst trying to reach out to new ones.
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538004)
Posted by dedcat on December 28th, 2013 @ 11:13am CST
Can we just go back to fighting robots, please?
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538007)
Posted by MGrotusque on December 28th, 2013 @ 11:22am CST
I think this Windblade character is pretty silly looking. I also dislike the name. In honesty.....i care very little if at all about this contrived character.
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538010)
Posted by dragons on December 28th, 2013 @ 11:31am CST
Not fan of kabuki war paint on her face like to see what she transforms into besides war paint on her face like her
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538015)
Posted by cybercat on December 28th, 2013 @ 11:55am CST
Everything I hear about Windblade just wounds my expectations. But I see a lot of what I'm thinking echoed here, so I'm gonna go ahead and say it.

I don't like the geisha makeup. First, because geisha.

Second, because, with Drift, we already pillaged Asian culture. There are other awesome Earth cultures we could borrow from--Britain's Boudicca for one, Joan of Arc, and yeah I know those are European, but I'm sure if I can name 2 off the top of my head, others can provide Native American, South American, African, etc, other Warrior Women. Why go back to the same well again when there's so many other fun options?

A seeker geisha with swords, I'll be honest, sounds like the worst kind of SparkleSue. And I say this as someone who writes fanfic. If she does turn out, as someone here suggested, to be a Knight of Cybertron, it's just TOO MUCH SPARKLE.

CC, can't handle the sparkle.
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538016)
Posted by Va'al on December 28th, 2013 @ 11:59am CST
Neurie wrote:Am I the only one who has always found that forcing sexuality on to robots has always just been a little tasteless?

I mean, sure it makes them more relatable to a target audience which traditionally was boys and now is a little more cross gender, but essentially these are robots who do not reproduce so there fore would be more asexual like worms, virus' or amoebas?

Robots have no need of sense of sexual identity even with self awareness they just are.

I'll still read the comic, but for me the sexualisation and focusing on gender takes me out of these stories. If I wanted love stories and exploration of deep issues relating to relationships there in I'd go read a Terry Moore book.

Im sure the writer will do a good job, just hope it doesn't alienate the installed fan abse whilst trying to reach out to new ones.


Sexuality and gender are not the same thing. And I feel this is a little late to the party, with Furman reintroducing Arcee to the IDW verse in the way he did. The issue has been there, but everyone has conveniently ignored it, it seems to me.

Also, Scott did point out and acknowledge that these are non-reproducing individuals, and she does talk about the asexuality perspective of the whole issue here.

Including and reaching out to a wider audience, on the other hand, cannot harm the franchise or the comics! :D

Oh, she also pointed out that this is all a discussion about the character that informs, rather than shows up in, the comics:

@seibertroncom ;) Not planning to draw a chart about it in-story, but I'm trying to try to get it right when I speak to fans.
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538018)
Posted by Va'al on December 28th, 2013 @ 12:02pm CST
cybercat wrote:Everything I hear about Windblade just wounds my expectations. But I see a lot of what I'm thinking echoed here, so I'm gonna go ahead and say it.

I don't like the geisha makeup. First, because geisha.

Second, because, with Drift, we already pillaged Asian culture. There are other awesome Earth cultures we could borrow from--Britain's Boudicca for one, Joan of Arc, and yeah I know those are European, but I'm sure if I can name 2 off the top of my head, others can provide Native American, South American, African, etc, other Warrior Women. Why go back to the same well again when there's so many other fun options?


The design is a bit of an issue, and I'm not entirely sure who came up with it. But I think a lot of positive things can be done even with a character that offer some problematic issues of representation, no?
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538022)
Posted by craggy on December 28th, 2013 @ 12:18pm CST
I'm still disappointed that the writers haven't taken the opportunity to throw out our binary gender idea completely. These are alien robots, and gender and race could be defined in quite different ways for these beings. I imagine that things like alt modes, any special abilities, whether a bot retains the same colouring all the time or alters it over the years and through reformattings, compatability with mini-cons or the various 'Master types, propensity for combination and even things like eye-colours or the ways they process information would make for far more interesting ways of categorising the species rather than "girls = boobs, guys = everyone else".

Thankfully James Roberts has done plenty in this regards, albeit not necessarily under the umbrella of "gender", by having concepts like Point One Percenters and Load-Bearers, etc, as well as more cultural than "genetic" concepts like Monoformers.

That said, I'm certainly interested in seeing what they do with Windblade. She does feel a little "Ms. Drift" at the moment, but I'm hoping to be surprised.
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538025)
Posted by Flashwave on December 28th, 2013 @ 12:43pm CST
Oh Primus, this is what we're up in arms about? We've gone from "Why sre their girls in Transformers" to "What do you call a girl in a race of machines that are BUILT?" This is why people stop readfing the comics... Just call her a girl if that's who she is supposed to be, and get on with it. And lets not go lambasting the designers for tripping over words that are "Politicaly Correct", please?

craggy wrote:I'm still disappointed that the writers haven't taken the opportunity to throw out our binary gender idea completely. These are alien robots, and gender and race could be defined in quite different ways for these beings. I imagine that things like alt modes, any special abilities, whether a bot retains the same colouring all the time or alters it over the years and through reformattings, compatability with mini-cons or the various 'Master types, propensity for combination and even things like eye-colours or the ways they process information would make for far more interesting ways of categorising the species rather than "girls = boobs, guys = everyone else".

Thankfully James Roberts has done plenty in this regards, albeit not necessarily under the umbrella of "gender", by having concepts like Point One Percenters and Load-Bearers, etc, as well as more cultural than "genetic" concepts like Monoformers.

That said, I'm certainly interested in seeing what they do with Windblade. She does feel a little "Ms. Drift" at the moment, but I'm hoping to be surprised.


This, although I suspect any kind of gender labelling is related more to the base design rather than the altmodes themselves. "-masters", "-Pretenders" and "-Minicon" seem more like upgrades, you could make a sound argument about the Minicons but the rest. On the other hand, Someone who turns into a truck is probably always going to turn into some kind of truck, and not back pedal to becoming a scooter or suddenly scan a jet. There's gotta be some kind consistency, possibly relating to their spark as much as anything else (Golly, I sound like a Functionalist... but any extremist has to start from some kind of truth)

Personally, I find myself subscribing to a theaory that "gender" for a Cybertronian is exactly like a stereotype: They didn't even know what it was until they discovered a trend on other planets as well for the men to generally be the stronger and the females were generally the lighter and tighter shapes

But what do I know?

=====
And I'd like to remind everyone of one small point about Windblade:
"We" designed her. By comittee, the fandom picked the alt, the faction, the gender, and coloring I think? So before we go labbelling, remember this is a product of the fanbase more than almost any other transformer.

have we even gotten a bio out of Windblade yet or are we just drawing conclusins on her being a MarySue
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538028)
Posted by Va'al on December 28th, 2013 @ 12:49pm CST
Some good points there, actually.

I'll add this thing to that: We didn't 'design' or choose the apparent Asianesque features, hence my question earlier. :-?

And no, no Windblade bio as yet. It'll probably come out in the comic, with the comic.
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538029)
Posted by Megatron Wolf on December 28th, 2013 @ 12:56pm CST
man windblade is turning out to be the worst idea to date, might even be worse than bayformers. And i dont see why its so hard to introduce genders to a robot race, lets see theres natural evolution, a glitch in the creation matrix or what ever being item or thing creates transformers in that continuity, a random line of code that takes hold or if you want to go spiritual do the balance thing, male female good evil that stuff. Stop having to be so politically correct its a damn comic book and toyline aimed at people who dont give a rats ass they just want robots fighting robots. Heres a good one someone created female transformes to be assassins, they look the way they do so they can be faster, more agile and can hide better plus you have the "wow factor". when the target sees one they wont attack right away they'll sit there and wonder "what the hell are you" giving a perfect opening to finish the job. Or we can just do it like the old days & just throw in female robots & new characters without explanation and accept it as normal. On another note she needs to lose the facepaint, just doesnt look right.
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538031)
Posted by Sabrblade on December 28th, 2013 @ 1:03pm CST
*sigh*

It's thread like these that make me wonder if Seibertron is slowly turning into the next TFW2005. >:oP
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538035)
Posted by Dagon on December 28th, 2013 @ 1:15pm CST
Sabrblade wrote:*sigh*

It's thread like these that make me wonder if Seibertron is slowly turning into the next TFW2005. >:oP



The thread about this on TFW is pretty wild at times.

However, I'm pretty sure that people are still allowed to like or dislike things as they find them to their liking or not.

Personally, I am with the side that is already bored with this character, months before she even makes an appearance. Nothing about Windblade hits any of the buttons for what I like in characters, and it's not a female or fembot or anything thing. She could be cool, but I'm not really interested.
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538039)
Posted by SW's SilverHammer on December 28th, 2013 @ 1:24pm CST
You know the problem here is IDW screwed themselves over with the Frankenstein created woman plot line, as counterpunch eloquently put, it threw a monkey wrench it mythos. There is this concept in fiction referred to as the suspension of disbelief, all IDW needed to do, quite honestly, is say there are lady robots, and guy robots, and just go with it.

Now reading the article its saying she's cisgender, which is a concept where the person identifies their gender with their outward appearance, to oversimplify it. basically meaning theres no woman trapped in a mans body or anything like that, instead they're a man because they were born with the male anatomy. So in this instance it means windblade associates her gender with here outward appearance, almost like allot of the people bitching over internet have wanted transformers gender concepts to be established. Again the problem with windblade right now isn't that she's a strong independent woman or what ever trope you want to through in, its instead its that the moment she's a walking plot hole in IDWs continuity.
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538040)
Posted by Sabrblade on December 28th, 2013 @ 1:30pm CST
It baffles me that fan are whining about this fan-built poll winner. She's what the fans wanted, so people are essentially whining about Hasbro/IDW giving the fans what they want. :roll:
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538041)
Posted by MINDVVIPE on December 28th, 2013 @ 1:33pm CST
All I need to do is take one look at that face and I know I will never ever care for this character. Bye, Wingblade... Have fun being a boring, ugly, try-hard character concept. Byyee.
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538044)
Posted by RiddlerJ on December 28th, 2013 @ 1:46pm CST
I never understood how gender is such a complicated thing in Transformers. I agree with other people that claim since there is no reproduction, there's no need for different genders in the Transformers. They're all the same.

As for "more feminine" appearing TF's. That's just it. They happen to look more what could traditionally considered female so Elita-1, Chromia, et all could easily be running around the IDWverse without any big deal. If they want to refer to themselves a "he's" or "she's" that just a matter of personal taste.

It just seems like every attempt to explain this just complicates things further. Wouldn't the best way to be all gender inclusive would be to make it a non issue altogether?
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538049)
Posted by Va'al on December 28th, 2013 @ 2:39pm CST
Again, it was made complicated when Arcee was introduced as a deviation from the norm. And to identify the deviation, they chose female pronouns.

Again, genders have nothing to do with reproduction, and the binary concept of male/female is a non-concept. As craggy said, the whole gender thing could've been removed entirely by using factions, but the current Arcee already botched that plan.

The 'walking plothole' argument only works at the current stage of speculation, as Scott has already pointed out that Windblade's backstory will explain her existence alongside Arcee, as a woman. And 'cisgender woman' is, as pointed out above, 'just' a woman - but the latter is a type of language which is not well-accepted by people in the fandom and beyond who realise all the points made so far about genders and sexuality. No lambasting, no attacks, just a point that an author is making to become less exclusive, and fans helping her in that.

Which can only be a good thing.
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538060)
Posted by MGrotusque on December 28th, 2013 @ 3:04pm CST
Sabrblade wrote:*sigh*

It's thread like these that make me wonder if Seibertron is slowly turning into the next TFW2005. >:oP

What do you mean by this statement?
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538061)
Posted by Mirimus on December 28th, 2013 @ 3:04pm CST
Before anyone gets the wrong idea, the facepaint is not Geisha-inspired, its Kabuki, which is why it's so garish. I could understand some people being upset if it were truly Geisha.

In any case, I think we need to accept that, as a property that is meant to appeal to us as human beings, and have a high degree of longevity, every aspect of human nature is going to be represented in some fashion. We stick with those things we can relate to, and move away from those things we can't. Hasbro, IDW, and yes, even Paramount want us to stick around for as long as possible, so they simply can't ever make Transformers too alien. Hence, accents, psychological problems, biological correlations, and even gender are going to be represented. I'd rather just accept them and not have them explained with some inane plot.
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538067)
Posted by Mudwire on December 28th, 2013 @ 4:01pm CST
While I can't say I like the design of Windblade all that much, and, as another has stated, I would like to possibly see more cultures touched upon rather than the number of Asian culture based ones we've had, like Drift, Bludgeon, and Prowl from animated. Nothing against the culture, I'd just like to see some more stuff, perhaps something less people know about. However, I feel that the character of Windblade herself is in good hands, as the writer seems to be very learned. I think that's the right word.

Although, I do have to disagree with her when she says that, practically, Transformers are not asexual, mostly where she says that the voice being changed to a female would make the character feel changed. I say this is less a matter of what the character's gender may be, but rather just... Well, how they sound and what we're used to. If Megatron still had a male voice, but it was very high-pitched, it would feel equally as changed as if he had a female voice.

But, yeah, I feel like the writer knows what she's doing, overall. And now I wait for David Willis of Shortpacked to make fun of the people commenting here.
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538068)
Posted by Mindmaster on December 28th, 2013 @ 4:25pm CST
Here's more of what she has to say (quoted from her/her husband's account over at TFW2005). Please, for the love of God, no flaming. Please. I already have a headache from reading this thread as is.

Gotten a few asks about Windblade's "Kabuki" elements. This can't be answered in too much detail yet, but Windblade's markings do have meaning and are important to both her and her backstory. However, I have no intention of presenting her in any sort of stereotypical geisha or hand-over-her-mouth-anime-girl role. The first art Hasbro released has her with a rather deadly looking sword and a pretty grim expression. Also, she turns into a military jet, so I'm not really seeing her as a very kawaii character.

You can already read my discussion of what I think about Arcee's origin on my tumblr (also MScottWrites) and I think I've established that I don't intend for Windblade to originate from the same place. (Plus, I'm pretty sure John Barber would string me up by my toes if I did.) I don't want to address it more than that because...you know...spoilers, but I can say that I'm much more interested in writing new stories than ret-conning old ones.

Smart money would say IDW did not go to trouble they have to launch Windblade the way they're doing if she was going to be the only other fembot in all of TF continuity. Just saying.

As to how long we have, I'll be blunt: We've got a 4 issue mini-series that everyone is praying will become an ongoing, but, like every other comic, we have got to prove ourselves from Issue 1. That means we need pre-orders and A LOT of them. Not: 'I'll pick it up when I'm at my shop.' Not 'I'll borrow from a friend' if you want Windblade to keep going the ONLY way to do that is to get your store to pre-order it. Tell them to order lots of it and get your friends to pre-order too. If you don't have a story, BUY it on Comixology or a similar app, but encourage your friends who do have a store to pre-order and buy. I'll try to provide a little help when the official solicitation is released to make it easier on those new to the process.

In terms of how Windblade views other transformers and their genders: well, this is a bit spoiler-y, but she's not exactly going to be shocked that guy transformers exist and since they are all still robots, gender is still going to be a lot less pressing to them than it is to us. Also, you know, it's Transformers, so I'm pretty sure there are going to be more pressing issues for everyone than 'date night.'

Anyone looking for a tease in terms of the 'wrath' I mentioned. Hmmm... how about TFBH having murder, cannibalism, societal collapse, PTSD, and the (perceived) apocalypse itself? That I wrote 'Stronger, Faster' and 'Hurt' and can't even make it through a Rescue Bots episode without putting someone's life in danger. So, while I am shooting to make TF Windblade a little more hopeful than my normal work, danger and excitement should probably be expected.

Regarding a toy: I'm pretty sure Hasbro made some kind of announcement on this, but that's really their domain.

In terms of the poll that made Windblade, I've never been shown any numbers so I can't speak officially. Just from my own business sense, I'm not sure why a company would ask people to make the transformers they want to buy and then not go with the most popular option. But, as I said, that would be a question for toy.

Anyway, we're lining up some good interviews so keep your eyes peeled for more on the book itself, but these should answer some of the more specific questions floating around out there.
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538069)
Posted by craggy on December 28th, 2013 @ 4:26pm CST
Sabrblade wrote:It baffles me that fan are whining about this fan-built poll winner. She's what the fans wanted, so people are essentially whining about Hasbro/IDW giving the fans what they want. :roll:

no-one got to vote for that facepaint.

(putting aside the gender discussions, including the plot-hole-osity that introducing a female Transformer into current continuity might bring, some people have been complaining about the kabuki facepaint in particular and the overly Japanese-centric feel of the design in general. Now, one one hand I would question just how much you can really complain that a giant transforming robot from a toyline based on old Japanese transforming robot toys looks like a Japanese transforming robot, I do agree that there are plenty of other looks they could have went with, and this being supposedly a Fan's Choice Figure* it might have been nice to give the fans some choice in the matter)


*gonna bring up again that I wish they'd just done it the way the Star Wars Fan's Choice is done - let us vote on any character already introduced in the franchise to be made into a figure. People could have supported Devcon, or Scrounge, or Stampede, DAMMIT! :oops: or Tarantulas or whoever to get a new Generations figure, using an elimination bracket style setup.
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538070)
Posted by morphobots on December 28th, 2013 @ 4:35pm CST
Dear God, I am so sick of this getting thrown out every six months and the corresponding brouhaha that goes with it. All is not right with the world lest the Transformers depict more female characters, and when said female characters appear calamity reigns. Yes, females have been tokenized in the Transformers; because they are toys[i] which were aimed at 8-year-old boys who weren't old enough to care. To be honest, girls weren't even considered in the mix. That was the norm back then, although that is no excuse for exclusion and doesn't make it right. But it was never a grand plot to marginalize women, it was a business model for making money. We always seem to forget that the fiction does not trump the merchandise, it's only an ancillary to boost sales. The political climate has changed now, we've grown up (supposedly), and now the marketing and direction are different. Female fans are there, they want representation, hence Hasbro/IDW responds to increase sales, and in the most effective way possible by letting fans [i]choose what they want in a new character. You may say my view is callous/offensive/cynical, what have you, but that's business. If you think you're making some great political statement by injecting more female characters into a toy brand, or similarly by banning them for eternity, that's up to you. At its heart this is still commerce, not art (as much as we would wish otherwise), and if you don't like something about it no one's forcing you to spend your money on it.
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538074)
Posted by ausbot on December 28th, 2013 @ 4:48pm CST
Watch the Gobots, at least they knew how to treat Female transforming robots.
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538076)
Posted by Sabrblade on December 28th, 2013 @ 4:57pm CST
Mairghread Scott Answers some Windblade questions (via her husband's Tumblr)

Hey Tumblr TF Fans,

So Mairghread took some time to answer some questions a TFW2005 Windblade Fan Page. Thought I’d copy and paste them here in case any of you don’t read that board. Remember too you can always ask her direct at her tumblr mscottwrites.

And here are the answers I have so far:

Mairghread Scott: Gotten a few asks about Windblade’s “Kabuki” elements. This can’t be answered in too much detail yet, but Windblade’s markings do have meaning and are important to both her and her backstory. However, I have no intention of presenting her in any sort of stereotypical geisha or hand-over-her-mouth-anime-girl role. The first art Hasbro released has her with a rather deadly looking sword and a pretty grim expression. Also, she turns into a military jet, so I’m not really seeing her as a very kawaii character.

You can already read my discussion of what I think about Arcee’s origin on my tumblr (also MScottWrites) and I think I’ve established that I don’t intend for Windblade to originate from the same place. (Plus, I’m pretty sure John Barber would string me up by my toes if I did.) I don’t want to address it more than that because…you know…spoilers, but I can say that I’m much more interested in writing new stories than ret-conning old ones.

Smart money would say IDW did not go to trouble they have to launch Windblade the way they’re doing if she was going to be the only other fembot in all of TF continuity. Just saying.

As to how long we have, I’ll be blunt: We’ve got a 4 issue mini-series that everyone is praying will become an ongoing, but, like every other comic, we have got to prove ourselves from Issue 1. That means we need pre-orders and A LOT of them. Not: ‘I’ll pick it up when I’m at my shop.’ Not ‘I’ll borrow from a friend’ if you want Windblade to keep going the ONLY way to do that is to get your store to pre-order it. Tell them to order lots of it and get your friends to pre-order too. If you don’t have a story, BUY it on Comixology or a similar app, but encourage your friends who do have a store to pre-order and buy. I’ll try to provide a little help when the official solicitation is released to make it easier on those new to the process.

In terms of how Windblade views other transformers and their genders: well, this is a bit spoiler-y, but she’s not exactly going to be shocked that guy transformers exist and since they are all still robots, gender is still going to be a lot less pressing to them than it is to us. Also, you know, it’s Transformers, so I’m pretty sure there are going to be more pressing issues for everyone than ‘date night.’

Anyone looking for a tease in terms of the ‘wrath’ I mentioned. Hmmm… how about TFBH having murder, cannibalism, societal collapse, PTSD, and the (perceived) apocalypse itself? That I wrote ‘Stronger, Faster’ and ‘Hurt’ and can’t even make it through a Rescue Bots episode without putting someone’s life in danger. So, while I am shooting to make TF Windblade a little more hopeful than my normal work, danger and excitement should probably be expected.

Regarding a toy: I’m pretty sure Hasbro made some kind of announcement on this, but that’s really their domain.

In terms of the poll that made Windblade, I’ve never been shown any numbers so I can’t speak officially. Just from my own business sense, I’m not sure why a company would ask people to make the transformers they want to buy and then not go with the most popular option. But, as I said, that would be a question for toy.

Anyway, we’re lining up some good interviews so keep your eyes peeled for more on the book itself, but these should answer some of the more specific questions floating around out there.

'Til All Are One,
Mairghread


A four-issue mini-series, eh?

Ms. Scott is one of the most competent TF writers we've had recent years. Right up there with Roberts and Barber. I think we can all stand to have a little faith in her making Windblade a decent character instead of insta-condemning this thing to death well before it even gets off the ground. Remember, WE fans decided on this character so WE fans are being given what we want, here.

Don't like how the character looks? Fine, but don't try to ruin the look for those who do, as it's like you're trying to take the fun out of it. The above text already addressed her look and explained that there WILL be some importance to it that DOESN'T make her into either a cliche or a stereotype.

Think she's a Mary Sue? Um guys? She's a fanmade character! One that WE decided upon. Of course she's gonna seem a bit Sue-ish to some extent because that's the very nature of fanmade characters! How can a fanmade-turned-official character not seem Sue-ish in some way/shape/form? It's ridiculous to think that these kinds of characters wouldn't have something special to them. Why, every time we even get a new character they always have something special about them in order to sell us on the character. That's the very nature of how new characters are handled. It's no different from back in the beginning of the brand when we got the original 28 new characters back in 1984. Each one of those had something unique and/or gimmicky about them, and the method has continued to this day.
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538077)
Posted by Burn on December 28th, 2013 @ 5:02pm CST
Mindmaster = Speedy Gonzales ...
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538079)
Posted by Moonshot on December 28th, 2013 @ 5:17pm CST
Biological woman sounds like the correct term under the circumstances. Windblade may turn out to be fun, IDW Arcee is loads of fun.
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538080)
Posted by Va'al on December 28th, 2013 @ 5:29pm CST
Mairghread Scott, after the recent posts made on her take on the language used to describe her approach to Windblade and her thoughts on IDW's Arcee, posted earlier today, has answered a couple more fan questions. These were collected by Jason Enright (her husband) and posted on his Tumblr, but you can find them pasted below!

Hey Tumblr TF Fans,

So Mairghread took some time to answer some questions a TFW2005 Windblade Fan Page. Thought I’d copy and paste them here in case any of you don’t read that board. Remember too you can always ask her direct at her tumblr mscottwrites.

And here are the answers I have so far:

Mairghread Scott: Gotten a few asks about Windblade’s “Kabuki” elements. This can’t be answered in too much detail yet, but Windblade’s markings do have meaning and are important to both her and her backstory. However, I have no intention of presenting her in any sort of stereotypical geisha or hand-over-her-mouth-anime-girl role. The first art Hasbro released has her with a rather deadly looking sword and a pretty grim expression. Also, she turns into a military jet, so I’m not really seeing her as a very kawaii character.

You can already read my discussion of what I think about Arcee’s origin on my tumblr (also MScottWrites) and I think I’ve established that I don’t intend for Windblade to originate from the same place. (Plus, I’m pretty sure John Barber would string me up by my toes if I did.) I don’t want to address it more than that because…you know…spoilers, but I can say that I’m much more interested in writing new stories than ret-conning old ones.

Smart money would say IDW did not go to trouble they have to launch Windblade the way they’re doing if she was going to be the only other fembot in all of TF continuity. Just saying.

As to how long we have, I’ll be blunt: We’ve got a 4 issue mini-series that everyone is praying will become an ongoing, but, like every other comic, we have got to prove ourselves from Issue 1. That means we need pre-orders and A LOT of them. Not: ‘I’ll pick it up when I’m at my shop.’ Not ‘I’ll borrow from a friend’ if you want Windblade to keep going the ONLY way to do that is to get your store to pre-order it. Tell them to order lots of it and get your friends to pre-order too. If you don’t have a story, BUY it on Comixology or a similar app, but encourage your friends who do have a store to pre-order and buy. I’ll try to provide a little help when the official solicitation is released to make it easier on those new to the process.

In terms of how Windblade views other transformers and their genders: well, this is a bit spoiler-y, but she’s not exactly going to be shocked that guy transformers exist and since they are all still robots, gender is still going to be a lot less pressing to them than it is to us. Also, you know, it’s Transformers, so I’m pretty sure there are going to be more pressing issues for everyone than ‘date night.’

Anyone looking for a tease in terms of the ‘wrath’ I mentioned. Hmmm… how about TFBH having murder, cannibalism, societal collapse, PTSD, and the (perceived) apocalypse itself? That I wrote ‘Stronger, Faster’ and ‘Hurt’ and can’t even make it through a Rescue Bots episode without putting someone’s life in danger. So, while I am shooting to make TF Windblade a little more hopeful than my normal work, danger and excitement should probably be expected.

Regarding a toy: I’m pretty sure Hasbro made some kind of announcement on this, but that’s really their domain.

In terms of the poll that made Windblade, I’ve never been shown any numbers so I can’t speak officially. Just from my own business sense, I’m not sure why a company would ask people to make the transformers they want to buy and then not go with the most popular option. But, as I said, that would be a question for toy.

Anyway, we’re lining up some good interviews so keep your eyes peeled for more on the book itself, but these should answer some of the more specific questions floating around out there.

'Til All Are One,
Mairghread
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538081)
Posted by Sabrblade on December 28th, 2013 @ 5:32pm CST
Good stuff.

And like I said before:
Sabrblade wrote:Ms. Scott is one of the most competent TF writers we've had recent years. Right up there with Roberts and Barber. I think we can all stand to have a little faith in her making Windblade a decent character instead of insta-condemning this thing to death well before it even gets off the ground. Remember, WE fans decided on this character so WE fans are being given what we want, here.
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538085)
Posted by megatronus on December 28th, 2013 @ 5:59pm CST
Sabrblade wrote:Gahhhh!!!

Calm down.

Just. Calm. Down.
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538086)
Posted by Mindmaster on December 28th, 2013 @ 6:01pm CST
Burn wrote:Mindmaster = Speedy Gonzales ...


What can I say? When it comes to Transformers, I have no life.
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538087)
Posted by Sabrblade on December 28th, 2013 @ 6:01pm CST
megatronus wrote:
Sabrblade wrote:Gahhhh!!!

Calm down.

Just. Calm. Down.
I... was?

That "gahhhh" doesn't reflect how I felt in that post. I was serious, but not mad.
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538092)
Posted by Caelus on December 28th, 2013 @ 7:06pm CST
Irritated at the part about Transformers not having genetic material, given that "genetic material" simply consists of data providing guidelines for something's creation - which I believe has been repeatedly established to exist in Transformers in some form.

From there, how strange is it to think that Transformers would reproduce through dyadic sexual reproduction?

Mitotic Asexual reproduction yields poor diversification, and triadic sexual reproduction would be unnecessarily inefficient, though it would make perfect sense to me for Cybertronians to do any and all of the above, to adapt to the needs of the situation.

And considering Jhiaxus's master, Nova Prime, was obsessed with finding a way to reproduce Cybertronians independent of Cybertron and the Matrix, how does it not make perfect sense for Jhiaxus to experiment with replicating a reproductive mechanism used in other species? Or /maybe/ to recreate a system of reproduction lost in the fog of time?

So, I say bring out the female Transformers (and the feminine Transformers. And all the other possible permutations).

Reveal a population of female Transformers in diaspora, like Tolkien's Entwives, or reveal that all Transformers are actually capable of choosing their sex (they aren't human, after all, and can make substantial bodily modifications at will), and explore the cultural pressures/biases/assumptions that have led to a unisex population. Explore the ramifications of that revelation for the population - who chooses to become female, and is it okay for anyone, or are some Cybertronians ostracized for the choice? How are they treated as a whole? What about the ones who switch back and forth frequently? Or don't want to be either? And what do the distinct constructs of sex, orientation, and gender mean for a Transformer?

Being so very human, and so very alien, lends itself to some radical exploration of intergroup dynamics. If Cybertronian gender is innate and culturally defined (as in humans), but reproductive biology is fluid (unlike humans), that really mucks with social dominance theory on Cybertron.
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538093)
Posted by xyl360 on December 28th, 2013 @ 7:07pm CST
Doesn't the Kabuki facepaint just harken back to the G1 character Nijika, the robo-Geisha which Perceptor's consciousness temporarily inhabited in one episode? Everyone is freaking out about it, but I think it's just another G1 nod/fanwank, nothing to lose your shit over. I mean sure, it may not look great in our opinions, but I think they were just trying (yet again) to throw some "Geewun" love into the mix for us old school fans. No reason to totally rip them for it or wonder where it comes from. I don't think for a second that it's a "Japanese culture" thing. I think it's a straight up "hey, remember that "Nijika" character from the old G1 cartoon?" thing, and that's all. Of course, they're going to 'explain' it in the comics, but that doesn't mean anything. Hasbro designed it before any of the comic book writers even heard of it, and that includes the facepaint.

edit: To add, I believe that Drift came from the comics, but this character, Windblade, did NOT. It was created in that fan-poll for a new character/toy and with Hasbro's big idea of now trying to tie everything in the Generations toyline (of which this fan-built bot will be a member) into the IDW comics, we now have a red, female, jet, Autobot with a Kabuki face and a samurai sword.
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538099)
Posted by megatronus on December 28th, 2013 @ 7:32pm CST
Sabrblade wrote:
megatronus wrote:
Sabrblade wrote:Gahhhh!!!

Calm down.

Just. Calm. Down.
I... was?

That "gahhhh" doesn't reflect how I felt in that post. I was serious, but not mad.

Your original posts conveyed frenetic agitation. Glad to hear that wasn't the case ;)
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538101)
Posted by Sabrblade on December 28th, 2013 @ 7:49pm CST
megatronus wrote:
Sabrblade wrote:
megatronus wrote:
Sabrblade wrote:Gahhhh!!!

Calm down.

Just. Calm. Down.
I... was?

That "gahhhh" doesn't reflect how I felt in that post. I was serious, but not mad.

Your original posts conveyed frenetic agitation. Glad to hear that wasn't the case ;)
Tis one of the many banes of the Internet's inability to flawlessly gauge emotion. :-B
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538102)
Posted by datguy86 on December 28th, 2013 @ 7:50pm CST
I think we're all missing a vital point here. There's what Scott is attempting to do with the character, and what Japan will do to the character.

Ain't that right Arcee the Secretary and Airachnid the Stalker?

Ahhh, mostly just kidding.
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538104)
Posted by Sabrblade on December 28th, 2013 @ 8:01pm CST
datguy86 wrote:I think we're all missing a vital point here. There's what Scott is attempting to do with the character, and what Japan will do to the character.

Ain't that right Arcee the Secretary and Airachnid the Stalker?

Ahhh, mostly just kidding.
Japan already did something indisputably awesome with the character: Turned her into a Kreon. :lol:

Image
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538105)
Posted by Ultra Markus on December 28th, 2013 @ 8:03pm CST
worrying about whether this female autobot or any other female cybertronian can reproduce or
bringing up why the issues of gender is like splitting hairs, just the fact that they create a female character with feminine feelings and desires that interact with other male cybertronians whether it be windblade ,arcee or elita-1 is enough,(im not saying windblade has feelings i dont really know) i don't dig deep into the why or the what if they can get pregnant i don't really care and i certainly hope that a lot of people feel the same
even the creators of windblade aren't to concerned about it
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538111)
Posted by SW's SilverHammer on December 28th, 2013 @ 9:06pm CST
Sabrblade wrote:
datguy86 wrote:I think we're all missing a vital point here. There's what Scott is attempting to do with the character, and what Japan will do to the character.

Ain't that right Arcee the Secretary and Airachnid the Stalker?

Ahhh, mostly just kidding.
Japan already did something indisputably awesome with the character: Turned her into a Kreon. :lol:

Image


But it's adorable :D
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538112)
Posted by T-Macksimus on December 28th, 2013 @ 9:16pm CST
I'm glad I waited a while to chime in on this one.

First I'm going to start with "YES! Bring on Windblade!!!"
My reasons for this being that 1) many of you are hating this character already FOR NO GOOD REASON WHATSOEVER and anything that pisses off the rest of the fandom this badly is just something that fills me full of glee because... well, as you all know, I'm an ***hole and I take delight in anything that irritates the rest of you and makes you whine.

2)Regardless of whatever the rest of you may think (and I truly don't give a damn what you think) all of you... no... MOST of you are human beings and no matter how much you may hate the "human" element of these stories this is still a comic created BY humans FOR humans and human characteristics are what makes characters relatable in the first place. If all you seek is brainless bot-on bot violence you should seriously consider getting some counseling because dude, that's just f'd up! For real, you've got worse issues than I do.

3) So many of you are dripping with scorn and acid-tainted remarks when you honestly don't know the first thing about the character or the story. You haven't read it, NONE of us has gotten so much as a decent spoiler or even a hint of storyline for this mini-series and yet you are ready to crucify this character faster even than what I was with the TF4 production announcement. And that's saying something because I have been just DEATH on TF4 since the first day.

Seriously, I'm thinking that some of you are after my title of "Most Vociferous Jerk on Seibertron" with the way you are attacking this character. At least when I attack the movies, there's some history of crapiness behind them but poor Windblade hasn't even had a chance to fail on her own merits and, to be honest, I don't believe she will fail. I think that Scott knows exactly what she's doing and what she's getting into and many of you need to just shut up and let her do her job. She's spent enough time fishing in this sharkticon tank to navigate the waters, avoid the bottom-feeders and man-handle the voracious yet utterly mindless monsters that are foolish enough to try to bite her hand off.
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538116)
Posted by Seibertron on December 28th, 2013 @ 9:46pm CST
I hate seeing this discussion. Let me make it really simple for everyone. There are Transformers who have male appearances, speech, and mannerisms and there are Transformers who have female appearances, speech, and mannerisms. They don't reproduce in a method with which we are familiar. It's really that simple.

Some things are best left not overcomplicating.

To those of you who are all about Transformers needing to be genderless, Transformers would become a pretty challenging and boring concept to read about a bunch of genderless robots who much be referred to without words such as him, his, her, hers, he, she, etc. Not to mention if you got your wish, I have a feeling that you guys would be bitching up a storm if a genderless Optimus Prime had a female voice actor or some other non-manly voice.

I'll take my Transformers as hims and hers. And I don't need to put any more thought into than that sentence to enjoy a fictional universe based off a child's toy brand. Thanks.
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538117)
Posted by Ultra Markus on December 28th, 2013 @ 10:21pm CST
Seibertron wrote:I hate seeing this discussion. Let me make it really simple for everyone. There are Transformers who have male appearances, speech, and mannerisms and there are Transformers who have female appearances, speech, and mannerisms. They don't reproduce in a method with which we are familiar. It's really that simple.

Some things are best left not overcomplicating.

To those of you who are all about Transformers needing to be genderless, Transformers would become a pretty challenging and boring concept to read about a bunch of genderless robots who much be referred to without words such as him, his, her, hers, he, she, etc. Not to mention if you got your wish, I have a feeling that you guys would be bitching up a storm if a genderless Optimus Prime had a female voice actor or some other non-manly voice.

I'll take my Transformers as hims and hers. And I don't need to put any more thought into than that sentence to enjoy a fictional universe based off a child's toy brand. Thanks.

my thoughts exactly, never has sexuality had any part of transformers, male/female relationships sure but nothing more :APPLAUSE:
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538118)
Posted by warzon3 on December 28th, 2013 @ 10:27pm CST
I'm surprised by the hate on Windblade.

When I first saw the red, the sword, and the war paint, I immediately thought of Zealot from WILDCATS, which I thought was a pretty darn cool character. It sounds like she is going to be a badass, I just hope that doesn't make her flat as a character.
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538119)
Posted by Sabrblade on December 28th, 2013 @ 10:29pm CST
SW's SilverHammer wrote:
Sabrblade wrote:
datguy86 wrote:I think we're all missing a vital point here. There's what Scott is attempting to do with the character, and what Japan will do to the character.

Ain't that right Arcee the Secretary and Airachnid the Stalker?

Ahhh, mostly just kidding.
Japan already did something indisputably awesome with the character: Turned her into a Kreon. :lol:

Image


But it's adorable :D
"But"? We're in agreement that this Kreon is a good thing.


T-Macksimus wrote:Jerky Post of Awesome
Seibertron wrote:Simple Post of Awesome
:APPLAUSE: :APPLAUSE: :APPLAUSE: :APPLAUSE: :BOWDOWN: :BOWDOWN: :BOWDOWN: :BOWDOWN: ;)^ ;)^ ;)^ ;)^ 8) 8) 8) 8)

Image

It's posts like these that make me really wish we also had a "saluting" emoticon. :D
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538120)
Posted by Noideaforaname on December 28th, 2013 @ 10:30pm CST
Wow, a 4-parter? Neat! And here I thought Windblade was just going to be tossed in the background or something.

"Pre-order to show your love for a brand-new unknown character" seems a bit backward, though. Guess it's necessary for comics...

Sabrblade wrote:Japan already did something indisputably awesome with the character: Turned her into a Kreon. :lol:

I kinda hope a Windblade Kreon actually happens. She's getting a Deluxe and a whole mini-series, might as well throw in a Kreon as well (which really doesn't even require any new molds or anything).
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538122)
Posted by SW's SilverHammer on December 28th, 2013 @ 10:41pm CST
Sabrblade wrote:
SW's SilverHammer wrote:
Sabrblade wrote:Japan already did something indisputably awesome with the character: Turned her into a Kreon. :lol:

Image


But it's adorable :D
"But"? We're in agreement that this Kreon is a good thing.
It's posts like these that make me really wish we also had a "saluting" emoticon. :D


I hope someone makes that Kreon, Has/Tak, funpub, Noideaforaname; its to great (n' adorable) not to exist :lol:
Re: Additional Information on Windblade - Cisgender Woman, Inclusivity, Arcee (1538128)
Posted by Joetx on December 28th, 2013 @ 11:23pm CST
Sabrblade wrote:It baffles me that fan are whining about this fan-built poll winner. She's what the fans wanted, so people are essentially whining about Hasbro/IDW giving the fans what they want. :roll:


No kidding.

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Transformers Podcast: Twincast / Podcast #98 - Combiner Wars
Twincast / Podcast #98:
"Combiner Wars"
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Posted: Thursday, August 14th, 2014