Text from Hasbro's Transformers website at http://www.beastwars.com/figures/
In 1984, while consumers were worshipping at the altar of the Cabbage Patch Kid doll, another toy line made its quiet debut, only this time it was in the action figure aisle. No one could know that in time, this brand would have its own set of rabid collectors, desperate parents, toy clones, a television series, an animated movie, a death, and a rebirth. And no one could know that this rebirth would also be a revolution of sorts, as the newest technologies brought this toy and its story to amazing new life. Of course, the toy line is The Transformers - an action toy with its foundations in Japanese animation and for some, Japanese toys themselves.
It is no coincidence that The Transformers line has lived to reach its 15th year. While 15 years is no small achievement, with the infinite variability in design, the versatility of the writers who continue to breathe life into the story, and with the enthusiasm of children of all ages, it is not hard to believe this line is one of the top ranking toys in the world today. In its current embodiment as Beast Wars, detailing the saga of two warring factions of robots on a prehistoric Earth, the spirit of The Transformers is as alive today as it was during its introduction in 1984.
To witness the impact The Transformers have made on the industry and in pop culture, just take a step back and look at their history. After the first few years of the toy's life a television cartoon series was created, detailing the adventures of these robots as they brought their intergalactic war to Earth. The Autobots, led by Optimus Prime, and the Decepticons, led by the diabolical Megatron, used the Earth as the battleground for their destructive conflict. This soon led to a theatrically released animated movie, introducing a whole new group of heroes and villains. After the cartoon series ended, the toy line continued to offer new and innovative transforming schemes through the late 1980s. Headmasters, Targetmasters, Powermasters, Micromasters are just a few examples of the chapters which made their way into the continuous storyline, now solely being told by a comic book series. The comic ended in due time, as well as the line's first generation of toys. After a rebirth of the line with Generation 2 in the early 1990s, the newly merged Hasbro Toy group, consisting of long-time toy manufacturers Hasbro and Kenner, created the Beast WarsÂ®. Two new factions, Maximals and Predacons, continued the struggle for supremacy begun by their ancestors centuries earlier. A new computer-generated animated series, created by Mainframe Entertainment, successfully dominates its time slot, and now cartoon fans watch with unblinking eyes as cutting-edge technologies bring this saga to life in a whole new way.
What does the future hold for The Transformers? One can only guess, but know this: through technology and imagination The Transformers will continue to surprise and entertain with limitless configurations. As we rush into the 21st century, remember the slogan that started it all in 1984 for The Transformers...they are more than meets the eye!
This article was published in TRANS-FORUM #8 (January 1999) by the owner of SEIBERTRON.com
Text downloaded from http://www.homeusers.prestel.co.uk/primus/
The following "rumors" have come to light on the topic of the Bench Press Transformers comics. Bench Press has put their comics on hold indefinitely while Hasbro talks to Marvel Comics about taking on the license once more. Whether this would be for the Beast Wars comic only is still unclear.
Another source is claiming that Behnch Press never actually had the license and it was more wishful thinking. I'm sure that Bench Press were in discussion with Hasbro, but they have now opted to use Marvel instead.
Although this would of course prevent some wonderful titles from Bench Press, it would allow the Transformers story to continue in the correct continuity if Marvel does get the deal. Will Simon Furman write them though? This is the question on everyone's lips.
Hasbro says they have no "preview" information available. It does sound like Marvel will be printing the comics if they do ever come out.
Editor's Note (2003): This is actual news that was swirling around the Internet before the big Transformers sites existed like transfandom.com, tfw2005.com, tformers.com, and SEIBERTRON.com.
This article was published in TRANS-FORUM by the owner of SEIBERTRON.com
Message from Bob Forward (10/21/1998). Text downloaded from http://www.beastwars.net.
As you may have heard, Season Three will be the last season of Beast Wars edited by Larry and myself. I sincerely hope this won't detract from the enjoyment of the series. We've had three great seasons and worked with a lot of really terrific people at Mainframe and Hasbro. We've met hundreds of Transformers fans and appreciated their input and support. All in all, we can hardly complain.
I can assure you that the change is nothing personal and we are not taking it that way. Hasbro has new plans for the series and it was felt that taking an entirely fresh approach with a new creative team would be the best way to handle it. This is very common in the animation industry - I myslef have been hired to replace excellent story editors for precisely the same reason. Larry and I are actually looking forward to some time off. The characters had become so real to use that I, for one, often found myself dreaming about them. In the cartoon industry this is known as "time to get off the show".
Never fear, you will not be left with an unresolved "cliffhanger" ending. Though the news comes too late to tie up all the threads, Simon and I are revising our season finale to be an actual closure of the current Beast Wars series. This will give the new show - whatever it may be titled - a "clean slate" from which to start.
Please give the new series a chance. Although I am not privvy to the storyline, it should certainly look spectacular and will most likely be excellent in its own right. After all, it will be animated by the fine artists at Mainframe and will no doubt continue to draw upon the rich history and traditions of the Transformers.
Larry and I feel privileged to have been at least one small part of that history, and hope that you will enjoy watching Season Three as much as we enjoyed working on it. You were all truly part of our inspiration.
'Till all are one -
This article was published in TRANS-FORUM by the owner of SEIBERTRON.com
Written by Michael Jenkins
In the history of all the entertainment mediums of fiction, the issue of mortality has always questioned the level of credibility - the reflection of reality - that any work of fiction produces.
In some works, such as satire, the issue of credibility is completely thrown out the window; the only reflection of reality is the subject which satire ridicules in its colorful and often humorous formats. So in the case of satire, the characters that we indulge in every morning in the newspaper comics are not bound by the issue of mortality; Charlie Brown will forever be known as the little boy, as he and his crew were created decades ago. As a contrast, many fictional entertainment mediums strive on continuum, in which mortality pays a crucial part. In countless numbers of novels and television shows, we are exposed to "alternate realities" that must be as believable as the creators can make them so that the audience comes back wanting more of the unexpected - a loose and distant derivative of the primal demand to stay alive. In these alternate realities, people and things are born, grow and die; relationships begin and end; people get along or fight; and decisions are made and carried out, for better or worse. Though these worlds are truly fictional, we enjoy them because they are strangely realistic - and we can somehow relate to and admire the characters in these worlds.
As for the Transformers, there is no strong continuum beyond the premise of them being sentient robots that can change their form as a tactical in battle. There are four or more alternate realities through which fans around the globe experience the "Robots In Disguise." It started in America in the early eighties in a morning cartoon series. But it soon spread to another medium; the comic book. Marvel Comics produced the TRANSFORMERS comic book series that reflected on events that occurred on TV, but the stories in no way paralleled. In the comics, Laserbeak, Buzzsaw, and Ravage (Soundwave's cassettes) could talk unlike they could in the cartoon series. Ratbat talked as well, and even led his own barrage of Decepticons. Shockwave was a sworn enemy to Megatron and wrestled the Decepticon leader for power on occasion; that was in the comics. On the TV show, Shockwave was one of Megatron's most devoted followers. The TRANSFORMERS comic ran rampant with flesh-slug humans that got the upper hand or some such. The Cybertronians met G.I.Joe and Spider-Man. None of these events would dare happen on the TV show (except for that one episode that featured an elusive Cobra Commander). How could anyone say what actually happened or not with two different story lines going at the same time?
Apparently, this question was not an issue, because the UK released its own comic books series, which remained true to the TV show even after the movie and the television show's demise. The Japanese TV show continued to thrive long after the US stopped, deciding to change events and characters, and ignoring what occurred in the Transformers: Movie.
Unfortunately for the Transformers, there is no George Lucas to patrol what happens to the Autobots and Decepticons and their home planet of Cybertron; thus the numerous story lines. Freelance writers and fans (like myself) have even written stories that continue events, but no one monitors what happens and what shouldn't happen. Timothy Zahn could not make a move with his Thrawn Trilogy unless Lucas approved. Can this be a part of STAR WARS world success? So many people have so many ideas as to what direction the Transformers should take, and the Transformers have yet to reach fans on all mediums, as STAR TREK and STAR WARS have. There is no question the graphic novels, video games, role playing games, sin-off TV shows and even movies would sell and play as excellent PR for Transformers, if done correctly. But substance must be brought to them, a sense of reality. Mortality and continuum seem to be two of the crucial fibers in securing and substantiating an alternate reality.
Though the mortality rule would help make the Transformers' universe a little more realistic and dramatic, not many fans argue with the numerous reincarnations of Optimus Prime and Megatron, two of the most recognized Transformers worldwide. Prime himself may be the most recognized Transformer in close to the almost two decades of the world's exposure to the Robots In Disguise.
Optimus Prime is extremely popular; he has up to seven different action figures in America to date claiming his name and fans were passionately displayed with his demise in the 1986 release of "Transformers: The Movie". As a result of the fan uproar, the creative staff of the TRANSFORMERS television show decided to coo the crying fans by returning Optimus to life, thus making the movie production team's major theme in the feature-length film "Cybertronians are mortal also" almost obsolete.
Megatron, on the other hand, possesses a different track record. Though he too is fairly popular, and has an equal number of action figure reincarnations (I include Galvatron), he did not cause any uproar with any death. Throughout the television series, the Imperial Decepticon Leader was notorious and uncanny for escaping death (much like Captain Kirk in STAR TREK). He pulled an ultimate bout of uncanny luck eluding ultimate oblivion when Unicron "slave-named" him Galvatron. The only reason why Megatron seemed so different was because of the damage caused to his mental circuits in the molten pit in which he was hurled into by Rodimus Prime. Overall, Megatron once again escaped death, and to this day suffices as leader of the "Decepticons (at least by American standards).
The credibility of mortality in these cases is fairly acceptable, due to excellent storytelling. A lot of story lines kill off characters, only to anti-climatically bring them back to life (thus being a major cop-out). Marvel Comics is notorious for killing off characters and then bringing them back with the typical "alternate universe", "time travelling", "oh I got out in time" mumbo-jumbo. It has happened so much (G.I.Joe screamed it) in the Marvel Universe that when you see a character killed off these days, you don't mourn because the character will pop up again in due time. But most fans seemed to have swallowed the bullet when Spock, Scotty and even Captain James Kirk escaped death to pop up in the 24th Century with Picard and crew. Fans did the same when Emperor Palpatine came back in the present accumulative of three times after his death in Return of the Jedi (due to a convenient plethora of Dark Side clones). All in all, the mortality rule can be bent a little with good storytelling. Megatron is not immortal, he just seems that way because of his tactical genius and sheer luck, and "relentless resilience". Prime is not immortal either, though I would personally like to see a better story that explains his return.
Where did the Cybertronians originate? Were they created by the sophisticated technology of the Quintessons; are they the children of the god-like Primus; are they the spawn of the super-computer Vector Sigma; did Unicron play a role in their creation; did the Liege Maximo play a part; or does the ultimate truth of Creation lie in all of these previous theories? How do the Cybertronians reproduce? Do they asexually do so in some form of soma-mitosis; do they extract key parts of their circuitry and build a unique personality matrix with the help of another Cybertronian; do they use the Matrix of Light to bring life to a lifeless machine; do they present the lifeless machine to Vector Sigma who grants life to that machine; or are all of the previous just the many examples of how Cybertronians reproduce? The two main questions of origination and reproduction have been major questions in Transformers continuum. Perhaps the origination of the Transformers does not have to be known, since we are not too sure of our own. Some fans may have adopted one of the "belief systems" and do not want there to be a definite, which could rule out the one they selected. But it can be argued that the creators of the Transformers universe are the ultimate gods and have say in what is true and what is not. The reality of the Transformers universe, and it depth is still fairly undeveloped and shallow. There are no definites, no true answers. So the next time someone asks you "How does Megatron shrink when he transforms into his gun mode?" you can't really boast the true answer because there is no true, official answer.
In one story line, Primus reigns supreme as the entity that created the phenomenon of the Cybertronians. In another, it is sequentially the Quintessons, Vector Sigma, and the Matrix of Light. So which one is right?
The phenomenon of enjoying a concept or group of characters is dependent on the world in which they exist, and how real that world is. One cannot enjoy something they cannot take seriously. Without realism, the concept or group of characters are naked and won't survive long in the cold. Many would argue that it is not enjoyable to watch others make that world in front of them, that perhaps the Transformers are better off without continuum. Who knows how the Transformers universe will substantiate, if it ever does. Perhaps it will evolve into a role playing experience where there is a book of rules and the audience makes their own adventures. Or will it become as tightly chronological as STAR WARS, or a little looser like STAR TREK. In my humble opinion, continuum will help secure a sense of reality in the Transformers universe, a reality which fans will most likely appreciate. Spanning out into different entertainment mediums will then be accomplished more successfully, bringing more attention to the Transformers.
Originally published in TRANS-FORUM #7 (July 1997) by the owner of SEIBERTRON.com
The Internet has become the fastest, most innovative way of transferring information from one place to another. It has also become a vast resource of almost any known hobby or trivial fact.
Within the Internet lie what are termed as "web pages", which are locations in Cyberspace where documents exist. These documents are found one of two ways, either by an Internet address or through various search engines provided by the Internet browser, such as America Online or Yahoo!.
Web pages pool together information regarding certain topics and are placed in a document-like format for viewing purposes. The web pages consist of text, pictures and sound documents which pertain to many topics. With a click of a button, you could be viewing a short clip from one of your favorite episodes of the Transformers, courtesy of the web page's owner.
These web pages have collectively united the fans of STAR WARS, BATMAN, and the Transformers by providing a space for fans to "hang out" in Cyberspace without having to travel to yearly conventions at a pricey cost.
The Transformers themselves are involved in the web pages of many individuals. One such owner of two Transformers web pages, Benson Yee, created what is now known as the Beast Wars HomePage due to its extreme popularity amongst Transformers fans.
The Beast Wars Transformers HomePage (http://acweb.com/ben/bw/) is a vast hub of Beast Wars information. Included in the web page are sites with information about the cartoon (which contains downloadable images and sounds from the cartoon series), pending information on the Beast Wars comic book series, the most recent information regarding the Beast Wars toys and release dates, and a discussion area where one can discuss his or her opinion about various Beast Wars interests.
Benson has expanded his Transformers web pages to a new web site dedicated to the newest phase in the Autobot and Decepticon history titled the Machine Wars (http://www.acweb.com/ben/mw/)! While this page remains limited in size because of the Machine Wars recent debut, it has all the information one could need. One can download images from the box art as well as facts about the toys themselves. Among the sections to visit on the web page is a discussion page as well, where you can discuss with other Machine Wars fans about your opinions.
Trans-Forum International has become the "physical" form of what exists in Cyberspace for the Transformers. Most of the images and many of the topics begin their life on the Internet before ever seeing the light of day in Trans-Forum International.
If you get a chance to "surf the net," make sure you stop by and view the Transformers home pages maintained by Benson Yee. If you would like to find out more about Benson Yee, please read the autobiography on his web site or e-mail ben at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ben, thank you very much for providing the excellent pool of information on your Beast Wars and Machine Wars homepages. Without people like yourself, Trans-Forum would be a weak form of Transformers media. With your help, it has become one of the largest Transformers newsletters in the world.
Trans-Forum International has done what no other Transformers newsletter has done before. It brings the readers full color images and graphics of the Transformers in each and every issue. Images of everything from the cartoon series, the comic books, Japanese cartoons, the catalogs and many other sources are displayed proudly on every page. However, none of this would be possible without the aid of the Internet and several other computer aids.
Through the Internet, images can be downloaded to a personal computer with a click of a button. These images and much, much more are available and readily accessible thanks to the Internet.
One may ask, "How are the images duplicated from the original sources to computerized images displayed in CyberSpace?"
The answer is rather simple. A computer tool called a "scanner" is able to convert real images to computer images in a matter of minutes. A scanner works in a similar fashion to a photocopy machine. Within seconds, images are scanned from the original document into the computer where one can do just about anything with that image.
With the continued support of Trans-Forum's subscribers, I plan to purchase a scanner (as well as my own personal computer versus using my parents' PC this fall. Utilizing a scanner, I can contribute my own artwork or my own Transformers nostalgia to the pages of Trans-Forum.
Some of the things I would like to share with Trans-Forum's subscribers are images from the Transformers record album, the movie CD soundtrack, a Japanese Transformers catalog made by Fumihiko Akiyama, a comic on which I am currently working, artwork from the comic book series, the Arcee mini-comic from the model kit, and many more items (just to name a few).
Written by Raksha, the plumed serpent
You hear a great deal about "heroic Autobots." That label is pushed on the toy boxes, in the comics, and in numerous voice-overs in the cartoon. In other words, someone wants to make absolutely sure you buy into this notion and accept the labeling, without even examining the situation for yourself. Makes it much easier for them to tell their story, if they present half the characters as simpleminded "designated good guys," and the other half as simpleminded "designated bad guys." Never mind that nothing is ever that clear-cut. Let's strip all the labels and the prejudices for a moment, and take a look at what's really going on.
Consider Cybertron, in the so-called "Golden Age" that was shown in "War Dawn." I'll remind you that it was the *Autobots* who labeled the era the Golden Age; something tells me the Decepticons had a very different perception. After having fought off the Quintessons a few million years earlier, in a struggle where the major advancement could only have come from the Decepticon side (being designed as war machines, after all, in contrast to the "domestic" Autobots), the two groups must have settled down to an initial peace, perhaps on originally equal footing. But by the time "War Dawn" rolled around, probably after several cycles of war and peace, the Autobots were clearly in control of the planet, and the Decepticons were in the minority. Probably their talents and warriors' natures were considered something out of Cybertron's barbaric past by the ruling class, and so they were more and more crowded out into being second-class citizens on their own homeworld. Finally a leader arose who wouldn't stand for it anymore, and struck back.
Megatron himself is one of the most heroic individuals I have ever encountered in life or fiction. He stood up against almost insurmountable odds and inspired his followers to rise up against a powerful opposition that felt the Decepticons were somehow morally inferior, and had done their best to keep them suppressed and restrained all these years. He has the ability to make his vision a reality. He cares enough about the future of his species and his planet to go against the status-quo, no matter *how* much his enemies malign him for it, and no matter how much propaganda is spread against him. He never accepts defeat, no matter how many times he faces devastating setbacks -- because he believes in his dream, and he has the strength of character and the dedication to his homeworld and to his Decepticons to bring his goals into existence, no matter the odds.
Much of the Transformer story that we know, is pure propaganda -- all told from the Autobot and human perspective. There's the insidious notion that this perspective is, in some universal sense, the "right" one, forgetting entirely that there are other ways of interpreting the world, that are just as "right." To that end the Autobots among themselves are usually shown when they're being chummy and friendly with each other, and the Decepticons are usually focused on when there's some kind of internal squabble, giving a totally skewed picture of them. It's all designed to suck the viewer's sympathies in with the so-called "good guys" - leaving out entirely that the Autobots are just as much responsible, maybe more so, for the Cybertronian civil wars, and far less "heroic" as individuals or as a group. These guys are cowards and isolationists, happy to cling to their little planet and watch it slowly deplete itself of energy, and perhaps become easy prey for any strong alien fleet that happens to wander by - while the Decepticons were wanting to gather resources and strengthen the defenses, and then go out and spread the empire outward. But the Autobots thought this was "wrong," and as a result painted the Decepticons as these wantonly vicious and greedy beings who were bent on destruction for its own sake. That's the viewpoint that's always shoved across in the "official" work.
But even those biases can't obscure the fact that much of the propaganda simply isn't true. If you watch the Decepticons on the cartoon, see their interactions with one another, see Megatron's leadership and his relationship to his followers, and if you haven't entirely closed your mind with pre-set biases, or at least have ever stopped to consider the opposite perspective, you'll see that the Decepticons are a closely-interacting team, dedicated to a cause that will forge a better future for them and their descendants, loyal to one another and to their leader, and standing together against anyone who labels them "evil" and then feels justified in trying to wipe them out, simply because their outlook on the world differs from some arbitrary, currently-accepted social standard.
It's much easier to stay stagnating in place, than to reach for the stars. It's much easier to bow your head and act as you're "supposed to," according to others, than to stand up and follow your dreams in the face of all opposition. It's much easier to present yourself to the rest of the universe as a "designated good guy" in order to mooch fuel from the gratitude of other species, than to refuse to debase yourself like that and have the courage to be true to your own nature. *That* takes true heroism. (And, I will also say - it's much easier to accept a label without question, than to examine the situation critically and check out the facts for yourself.) And that's what the Decepticons are all about. Courage, loyalty to one another, and *honesty*. They make no pretences about who they are, regardless of who disapproves. They're willing to forge their own path. And they refuse to conform themselves to someone else's demands. Even with all the designated biases in place, if one looks at the situation objectively, their true nature comes through. And it's a far more admirable nature than that of their hypocritical and pretentious opponents. The *real* heroes of the story - are the Decepticons.
Originally published in TRANS-FORUM #6 (May 1997) by the owner of SEIBERTRON.com
The Hartman's BOTCON '97
Sponsored by: Jon and Karl Hartman with help from Gene Hallit and Pet Sinclair
Convention Experience: The creators and sponsors of the original BotCon '94 What to look for: Voice actors from the original cartoon series and from the Beast Wars, Stan Bush in concert, comic writer Simon Furman, comic artist Andrew Wildman, Hasbro, Mainframe Entertainment, art contest and auction of fan create material, a charity auction to benefit the Shriner's Hospital, dealer tables, and guest panels.
The Pros: Botcon 1997 appears to be the preferred convention of the two. Many guests scheduled for Botcon '97. The Hartmans are true fans of the Transformers themselves and are dedicated to bringing the convention "back to the fans." The great, professional, full color advertisements (one drawn by Andy Wildman just for the convention) have developed a good deal of excitement themselves. Great location for poeple out east. Best convention if interested in the workings of the Transformers.
The Cons: Botcon '97 may be bringing it back to teh fans, but at what cost? The convention may be shock full of exciting guests, concerts and other features but is it worth the pretty penny you'll spend here? Besides the fancy costs, New York City might not be worth the drive (or the time) for anyone out west. Not a great location for a majority of the country. Are the guests for real?
The Costs: $40.00 for regular attendance. $120.00 for regular attendance plus the fan appreciation banquet, concert with Stan Bush, and the theatrical showings of the Transformers: The Movie.
Men-In-Black's TRANSCON 2
Sponsored by: the Men-In-Black, Dennis Barger (president) Location: Rosemont, Illinois
Convention Experience: the sponsors of the successful Botcon '96 What to look for: Transformers dealers from around the world, a 24 hour video room, fan art showcase, custom figure, art, and diorama contests, panels and discussion groups, special surprise guests, two exclusive Beast Wars toys, charity auction to benefit the US Marine Corps.
The Pros: Transcon 2 may not have received all the fan hype of publicity that Botcon '97 has but it sure "plans" to pack a punch. Many surprise guests are advertised to come forth. The central and familiar location should be convenient for most Transformers fans. The fans may be attracted to TransCon2 over BotCon '97 just because of the simplicity behind the show. Best convention if interested in working on your Transformers collection.
The Cons: TransCon2 has done just that: made "plans" for many surprise guests. A lot of uncertainties just three weeks away from the convention's debut. We want specifics, not possibilities. As long as the dealers show, this will be a nice convention still. Many fans were displeased with the Men-In-Black's lack of organizational skills last year. Will this scare fans away this year? The black-and-white ads for TransCon2 are "cheap" looking and unprofessional compared to the BotCon ads.
The Cost: $35.00 for regular attendance.
This article originally published in TRANS-FORUM #7 (July 1997) by the owner of SEIBERTRON.com
Written by Dennis Barger
Do you remember the first time you saw a commercial for this really cool toy? Robots who changed into vehicles and back. There were the good guys, the Autobots, and the bad guys, the Decepticons, with the fate of the Earth rested in the outcome of their struggle. At least that's what you thought you said, but it was probably closer to "Omigosh that's so cool!"
Do you remember the joy you felt the first time you bought a Transformer? You just sat their, transforming it over and over, figuring out all the tricks, reading the tech spec over and over, until you knew it by heart.
Megatron? Thundercracker? Optimus Prime? And even Gears? It doesn't matter. You taped the show, collected the comic books, went and saw the movie the day it opened, and sat at the edge of your seat the whole way through!
It doesn't matter whether you managed to collect everything with the name Transformers on it or only had one special toy. Regardless, you are a Transformers fan and we have something for you.
The Men in Black, the people who brought you BOTCON '96, are inviting you to Chicago, IL this July 4th, 5th, and 6th for TransCon2, the Transcontinental Transformers Convention and "the best 'bot for your buck!"
For one pre-registration price of $35, you will receive an all access pass for the whole weekend, an exclusive convention toy, a convention T-shirt, and other exclusive convention merchandise. This includes the dealer room, 24 hour video room, fan art showcase and contests, panels and discussion groups by including special surprise guests. The Men-in-Black have secured two exclusive toys for this years show, one will only be available at TransCon2. Catch a special sneak preview of the convention toys on the Men-In-Black web site at http://www.htonline.com/Men_in_Black.
TransCon2 will be held in the Clarion Resort Rosemont, providing easy access to the City of Chicago during the July 4th weekend. The Rosemont Resort Clarion is offering a special rate of $69 per night for convention attendees. Only 200 rooms are available, so register early by calling 800-221-2222 or (847)297-1234 and tell them that you are registering for the Men-in-Black's TransCon2. The Clarion Resort Rosemont is just a free shuttle ride from Chicago's O'Hare International Airport.
This is just minutes from the Chicago Comicon, one of the country's biggest comic book conventions, featuring every comic book imaginable, and then Men in Black are attempting to arrange free shuttle service between the two conventions. Always wanted that hard to find Transformers title? If you can't find it at the Chicago Comicon, you'll never find it.
Also, the 4th, 5th, and 6th is the world renowned Taste of Chicago weekend, a city wide food festival featuring food from Chicago's diverse cultural make up.
TransCon2 will also see the return of the Toys 4 Tots Charity Auction. Exclusive exclusive convention items, rare Transformers toys, and other Transformers items will be auctioned off at the end of the weekend, with proceeds going to the United Marine Corps Toys 4 Tots Charity, to purchase toys for the needy children of the Chicagoland area, "Because every kid deserves a little Christmas." The generosity of Transformers fans is already well known, as last years auction raised nearly $6,000.
TransCon2 will be the first major show of the year devoted to the Transformers, bringing together collectors and fans from around the world. All the hottest Transformers, and all the best trades will be taking place at TransCon2 first. Don't miss out on that last piece to your collection, or a favorite old memory from the past. Why wait for another convention when you can get it at TransCon2 first?
For more information, you can reach Men-In-Black via e-mail at MIB141@aol.com.
And remember, TransCon2: "better 'bot for your buck!"
This article originally published in TRANS-FORUM #6 (May 1997) by the owner of SEIBERTRON.com
Beast Wars will return for a tentative thirteen new episodes for a fall 1997 second season. It is unknwon at this time which characters will be in the show.
What did everyone think of episode #21 titled "Possession" starring the Decepticon Starscream? I felt it was very well done and stayed true to Stascream's original character. I was a little disappointed that his old form wasn't featured (other than for a brief moment), but hey, Galvatron and Unicron were mentioned which further cemented the ties between the original Transformers and the Beast Wars.
How about the season finale two parter titled "Other Voices"? This is what the whole season has been boiling down to and I thought it was worth the wait!
The Unicron form which the Alien entity portrayed was awesome! The voice was even similiar to Orson Welles' Unicron voice from the Transformers: The Movie. I thought it was kind of cool that the Aliens found this "file" of Unicron is Optimus Primal's memory banks from the episode "Chain of Command". Unicron truly did make an everlasting presence upon the Transformers. I wonder what ever happened to Unicron's head after the Technobots were created by Grimlock prior to the Rebirth trilogy.
The Blackarchnia/Tarantulas situation is certainly original. I'm assuming that Tarantulas must have the more powerful mind of the two (reference to "Other Voices" Part 2). I can't wait to see how this is resolved next season.
And speaking of next season, how about that awesome cliffhanger at the end of "Other Voices" Part 2? I thought Megatron was going soft in the last few episodes, but he pulled off one of the coldest, most evil moves I've ever seen by trapping Optimus Primal in the stasis pod. Worse yet, he was mocking Optimus Primal during his final (?) moments. Let me hear your feedback on Optimus Primal's situation.
This article was originally published in TRANS-FORUM by the owner of SEIBERTRON.com
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