Transformers UK: Issue #80
Story: Target: 2006 (Part 2)
Back-up strip: Hercules
Cover date: September 27th, 1986
Script: Simon Furman
Artwork: Will Simpson (story) John Stokes (cover)
Rating: Art / Story
By Omega Steve
The Autobots are shocked by the sight of Jazz being held captive and tortured by Galvatron!
Jazz and Hound keep watch from a perceived 'safe' distance as the Constructicons work at a staggering pace, covering a crater with solar panels and building what looks like a giant laser cannon. The Autobots have no idea what the purpose of this structure is or why Galvatron would travel 20 years into the past to build it, but Jazz knows one thing for sure - whatever it is spells bad news for them! Having seen enough the observers prepare to return to the Ark, when suddenly Jazz is blasted square in the chest. Hound cradles the head of his fallen comrade as Cyclonus stands over him, blaster raised, and gratified by his victim's despair.
A short distance away, the peaceful countryside is disturbed by a ball of energy that manifests itself several metres above ground level. It is the Autobot's prototype space bridge and Ultra Magnus emerges from it, in pain and disorientated. Images of recent events on Cybertron appear in his mind and he remembers he has only 120 to locate Optimus Prime, before Operation: Volcano begins.
Nearby, Cyclonus continues to lay into Hound. He tells the Autobot how he once lay close to death until a being called Unicron recreated him, alas there will be no such reprieve for Hound. Ultra Magnus begs to differ, and a well-placed blaster shot disarms Cyclonus. As the Decepticon reels back he instantly recognises his attacker, and is confused as to how Magnus could have known of Galvatron's plan and followed them back in time. He realises there was no way, and this must be the Ultra Magnus of the current era - nevertheless his presence on Earth must be reported to Galvatron. Using a pause to his advantage, Cyclonus hurls Hound at Magnus and quickly transforms and escapes. A relived Hound is grateful for the save, but requires assistance to return to the Ark.
Back at the canyon, Galvatron acknowledges the problem Ultra Magnus could create, but thinks he has the solution. He reasons that if the Autobots could be made to attack in haste he could inflict on them a defeat so crushing, that they would not dare to interfere further.
At the Ark, Hound's injuries are treated by Grapple as he explains what happened to him earlier. Jetfire decides now is the time to act but Magnus advocates caution: They should first get to the bottom of what is going on and find out what has become of Optimus Prime. Jetfire disagrees, he has no time for this new arrival and for all he knows Magnus could be a part of all the weirdness that has been going on. As the Autobots argue, Smokescreen rushes in - they have a message from Galvatron! Jazz appears on screen hooked up to torture equipment and writhing in agony. Galvatron holds him prisoner - and if the Autobots want him back they can come and get him!
Cyclonus does not Jazz with him when he takes to the skies and yet Jazz is Galvatron's captive when we see him later. A possible explanation could be that Cyclonus pursued Hound into the forest some way from the solar weapon, whereas Jazz fell near it. So when he returned it was a simple matter to collect the injured Autobot. Good to see Ultra Magnus on Earth but will he lead the Autobots or not? He didn't seem interested this issue and said he had to concentrate on finding Prime and returning to Cybertron. On the letters page Grimlock pours scorn on the cartoon series for depicting him as an intellectual moron. We are told that the cartoon got it wrong and comics have it right, but future appearances in the US comic will confuse matters by emulating the cartoon. This issue also features the second of the new leaders free pull-out posters.