Transformers UK: Issue #143

Story: Spacehikers (Part 1)
Back-up strip: Headmasters: Brothers in Armour (part 2)
Cover date: December 12th, 1987
Price: 32p
Script: Bob Budiansky
Artwork: Jose Delbo/Frank Springer (story) Martin Griffiths/John Burns (cover)
Rating: Art / Story

First appearance: Sky Lynx, Selani


Synopsis:

By Adam Hogg

The Autobots are stunned when four human children disembark the captured Blast-Off!

Several hours before the conclusion of last issues story, Sky Lynx soars through warp space towards the Earth. A sudden return to regular space confirms his presence in our solar system, but although pretty ordinary looking as far as Sky Lynx is concerned, it can hardly be any worse than the place he left!! A flashback to Cybertron reveals Sky Lynx as a fearsome warrior who certainly took down his fair share of the enemy, but 50,000 Vorns of war is enough to grate anyone. When his old buddy Wheeljack had called him recently, Sky Lynx jumped at the chance to aid his cause...

As the Earth gets closer up ahead, Sky Lynx soon tracks onto the Ark, but stays out of range for the moment. While Inside, Grimlock and the Dinobots have assembled on the bridge, where Wheeljack continues to track the "Mode Lock" thought to be attached to their fugitive, but no sign of Blaster yet. Wheeljack explains that the device is not so effective in space, but Grimlock just want results not excuses. Meanwhile a few thousand miles away orbiting the Earth, the Decepticon warrior Blast Off is now the wearer of the Transformation impairing "Mode Lock", while inside him are four children, and Blaster in his cassette deck form. Enjoying the dream of Space flight, the four are having the time of their lives. Suddenly a warning light begins to flash unnoticed, while Blaster explains to the children the basics of the Transformer's conflict on Earth, and why it is now up to him to confront Grimlock and insist he step down for the good of the Autobot cause. The kids are impressed, when suddenly Jed notices the Ark out of the main window (which of course is where we left off last week).....

The Ark dwarfs the tiny shuttle by comparison, and unleashes a volley of fire as it gains rapidly, in a scene not to dissimilar to the opening of the original Star Wars film! The terrified children are sure that Blaster can save them again as he takes control of Blast Off to manoeuvre around the barrage. Back on the Ark's bridge, Grimlock has spotted Blast Off and drawn only one conclusion - Blaster has teamed up with the Decepticons!! Wheeljack is also surprised by the sight, Blaster was a rebel but he never truly believed he was a traitor! Meanwhile Blaster realises the struggle is futile, and has stopped Blast Off in an attempt to end the pursuit peacefully. The children are shocked that Blaster is about to surrender, and Sammy suddenly grabs Blaster and throws him out of the airlock - he saved them and now he can save the Autobots too!! As Blaster spins through space, a huge claw reaches out from below the Ark and swallows the tiny craft as it passes. Inside, the Autobots with weapons drawn have Blast Off surrounded. Eventually the four children emerge, and Wheeljack convinces the Dinobots that they don't present any danger...

Back outside, Blaster transforms before trying to figure a way into the Ark, while unnoticed Sky Lynx still remains soars in the distance. A television satellite just might be a chance, and using his powerful radio controls he rides the Satellite using its stabilising Rockets to propel himself towards the Ark! Back inside, Wheeljack leads the four nervous children on a tour, insisting they have nothing to worry about. Robin though is cold, and Wheeljack curses himself for forgetting the needs of humans, and especially children in this environment! The quartet stand inside a chamber which soon kits them out in Spacesuits, and not forgetting Robin's teddy either (haha!). The suits are temperature regulated and carry 2 hours worth of air. Suddenly Slag interrupts - commander Grimlock wants the see these slime squirts....NOW!!!


Synopsis 2:

By Steve Bax


The Autobot Targetmasters try to repel a Decepticon attack against the botanical centre known as the Nursery.

At Lord Zarak's headquarters in the Nebulan capital Koraja, Vorath has made a discovery. He tells his commander about a transmission he has picked up from the Autobots of planet Earth! The world is unknown to Nebulan science and Zarak orders his subordinate to continue monitoring. Meanwhile he has more important matters to see to, like visiting his hated foe Galen to gloat over recent victories. He enters the detention cell and finds his daughter Llyra standing before the unconscious Galen (who is trapped in some kind of energy vine). The man she once loved is now the most hated being on Nebulos, and she sheds a tear for him. Zarak orders Krunk to reactivate Galen... and slowly he returns to consciousness.

The prisoner sees his former girlfriend and orders Zarak to tell her the truth that he has done nothing wrong - but Llyra simply storms out, denouncing Galen as a liar. Zarak is satisfied, he has robbed Galen of his love, liberty and power, and soon he will demand the death penalty at his trial. Galen has a word of warning for his nemesis - that he is becoming drunk on power and will end up imperilling the very planet he wishes to save. Zarak doesn't want to listen, but at the back of his mind he knows Galen speaks the truth.

Suddenly he gets word that Autobots have been sighted at the Nursery, and so Zarak mobilises Scorponok and the Terrorcons for an immediate assault. At the scene, the female senior called Selani welcomes the Autobots and their Nebulan allies and thanks them for agreeing to safeguard the facility (safeguard!, isn't them being there just asking for trouble?). It has provided medicines and food for the Nebulan people for millennia and now seems to be under threat from the Decepticons. Suddenly the battle cries of the approaching Terrorcon horde fills the air and Zarak orders them to attack the apparently defenceless Autobots.

******

Comments:

Zarak is starting to become aware of the change in his personality that has resulted from his bonding to Scorponok. Up until now he has been too blinded by power to realise and it takes a few home truths from Galen to plant the seeds of doubt. Ironically Scorponok has become a non-entity since bonding and now stands around doing nothing while Zarak calls all the shots. The same can be said for Headmasters generally but the Zarak/Scorponok example more so. Obviously its easy to see what Zarak is getting out of this partnership, but I can't see many advantages for Scorponok as things stand.

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