krpalmer: Charlie Brown and Patty in the rain; Charlie Brown wears a fedora and trench coat (charlie brown)
While I’ve indulged myself for several months with a bagatelle of a comic book pitting “Star Trek” (the animated series) “versus the Transformers” (the original cartoon), I can’t say I’ve had many impulses to check out further comics licensed from either property. In continuing to look at the “TF Wiki,” though, I did take slight note of another comic looking at a just-tangential “robot toy line of the 1980s,” enough that running into a comment suggesting it had continued on into an “edgy” take on things left me a little askance. One follow-up to that comment, however, did get my attention when I saw the claim the best of all the recent comics on the general subject remained “Incredible Change-Bots.”
More than just machines! )
krpalmer: (Default)
After waiting for months, then waiting for a few extra weeks after that, the first issue of the "Star Trek meets the Transformers" comic, news of which had broken through my usual detachment from the modern comics extending both franchises, was promised to arrive at last. I travelled to the closest comic shop and saw a lone issue left on the shelf; whether it had proved popular compared to the Mystery Science Theater 3000 comic I'd seen plenty of issues of a few weeks before or had been deemed not worth the risk of ordering many issues I don't know. After buying the comic and starting to read it I was a bit impressed there hadn't been any time wasted before the crew of the Enterprise encountered the Decepticons; by the end of the issue, though, I was wondering a bit about those comments tossed around these days about the relative ratios of price to content for North American comics and manga volumes. Whether the story would seem to get to "the good guys of both franchises get to understand each other and team up" with the same brisk pace when all the issues are collected in "graphic novel" format, I don't know yet; I can at least suppose we've avoided "the humans (and the alien crew members of the animated series) are reduced to in no time to the tagalong mascots of the Autobots," though. The greater risk, perhaps, just might be "supposing this modern take on something seen when young and impressionable should be somehow profound."

I'd noticed from the preview covers the Autobot lineup included a character not instantly recognisable with familiarity of the formative era the art is reproducing. (I'm inclined to say the Star Trek characters look just like their animated series art; on the other hand, the art of the animated series wasn't very complicated to begin with.) It only took a bit of looking around, however, to realise the female Autobot had been designed in recent years for what seems a steady stream of Transformers comics. Unfortunately, that looking also turned up some whiffs of the noisome mire that can seem to engulf any attempt to expand on "familiar casts." Even if "familiar casts" often seem associated with "familiar properties" these days, that shouldn't excuse the nastiness. In any case, though, in the comic itself there was a female Decepticon a bit more looking around turned up had come from the same stories, and before things were over for this instalment one of the few female Autobots "instantly recognisable with familiarity of the formative era" had also appeared.
krpalmer: (Default)
One recent item jumped out at me from the usual flow of reports on the Anime News Network, at first glance an unexpected stretch in what the site covers. There've been connections between the Transformers and Japan from the very beginning, of course, but I don't remember the site taking that much interest in them. Star Trek would seem that much further afield. Even so, though, the report the comic book company that now holds the license for both Transformers and Star Trek comics would be publishing a crossover between those two franchises did amuse me, in a way that cut through my usual thoughts of "I know about them; I'd just rather spend what time I have now on other things than trying to follow their modern flow of product." (Certainly, if not for that single unusual excursion, it might have been a while before I'd taken another look at the "Star Trek news" or "Transformers information" sites I do know about, when the bit of news might already have been buried in their own flow of reports.)
While waiting )
krpalmer: (anime)
A store opened in the area mall I understood to offer "Japanese design"; that at least piqued my interest. Wandering though it to get an impression of lots of inexpensive housewares on display, I reached a shelf of toys and thought "sure, the Transformers were from Japan to start with." Then, even as an expected name was popping up from stacks of trivia, I looked that much closer and realised what was actually in green text at the bottom of the familiar-looking packages.
An illustration within )
krpalmer: (apple)
An Apple news site linked to a old photo of Susan Kare, the bitmap artist most associated with shaping the on-screen look of the original Macintosh (although she was also later hired to design icons for Microsoft Windows 3). The link was promoted with the comment the picture was at a high enough resolution you could get a good look at details in the background of Kare's office, so I followed the link to the photo. Taking in the clutter behind Kare (who, sprawled back in her desk chair, did fill most of the frame), I first noted the artwork and design books, then looked at the upper left of the picture. All of a sudden, a different bit of 1980s trivia kicked in. A red toy robot on the shelf looked familiar; I could put a name to it at once as Inferno, the Autobot fire truck from the Transformers.
A feedback loop of history )
krpalmer: (Default)

Amidst a certain amount of contemplation towards an approaching tenth anniversary, I happened to notice on [ profile] incisivis's journal that today, the 8th of May, appears to be the date in 1984 that the first issue of the Transformers comic went on sale, and started trying to figure out if I could say anything about a twenty-fifth anniversary before the day ran out...
And here it is )
krpalmer: (Default)
Even with the Olympics getting under way, it still seems like the "silly season" is well upon us in terms of news. This morning, I saw an article in my Friday paper calmly discussing how a decision has been made that a Megatron toy who transforms into a realistic-looking handgun can now be imported across the border instead of being turned back by customs. I suppose I just feel a mild happiness for the person who had first hoped to import the toy, even if I never had a Megatron Transformer of my own in my youth (or a Darth Vader action figure, for that matter); these days, with the exception of two transforming "Valkyries" from the Macross anime that I got a while back, I guess I'd feel too self-conscious ordering an expensive "toy." On the other hand, when a line of Transformers toys was widely available a little while ago that included a Megatron who transformed into a stylized "zap gun," I indulged myself in getting one of them.

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