Transformers UK: Issue #91

Story: Heavy Traffic (Part 1)
Back-up strip: Spitfire and the Troubleshooters
Cover date: December 13th, 1986
Price: 30p
Script: Bob Budiansky
Artwork: Don Perlin (story) Phil Gascoine (cover)
Rating: Art / Story


Synopsis:

By Adam Hogg

Motormaster could really get some points on his license for this!!

After her shocking re-introduction last issue, Circuit Breaker and her government sponsor Walter Barnett now analyse the video recording of RAAT's recent success. On screen are the seven Autobots who inadvertently travelled across the space bridge from Cybertron (see issue 69). They had been unprepared for hostilities and easy prey for Circuit Breaker's team. She points out how the robots were moments away from crushing the military vehicles sent to investigate them before RAAT intervened. But Barnett is not so sure - it looks more to him like the robots were attempting to communicate! Nevertheless RAAT had swooped down and released electrical foil which disorientated the Transformers. Troops had abseiled down and placed a magnetic pad on the head of each robot. Circuit Breaker then joined the fray and releasing 300,000 volts that simultaneously homed in on each pad - immediately rendering all seven inoperative. After loading them on to flatbed trucks they were transferred to RAAT's secret headquarters, all in a total of 46 minutes.

Barnett is a little concerned about the excessive use of force but the results appear to speak for themselves. Circuit Breaker adds that she was hired by Triple I to stop the robots - and her plans make no allowance for seemingly non-hostile ones. Barnett insists that her dedicated is well appreciated by his superiors and she has earned herself a cash bonus. Circuit Breaker decides it's time to educate Barnett in her ways, she lives only for the destruction of all robots - and he can keep his cheque. As she departs to continue her work, she passes the mounted faces of the Cybertron seven - a grim reminder of her personal vendetta against Transformers.

A world away at the Ark, Ratchet is treating Optimus Prime for an open wound he sustained in the Limbo dimension (see issue 100). Unknown to the pair the tiny insect form of Bombshell is watching (having sneaked into the Ark last issue). He sees Prime's wound as the perfect opportunity to plant one of his mind-controlling 'cerebro shells' and manoeuvres unnoticed. The shell quickly makes its way up to Prime's brain module and takes root - but for some reason it fails to take control and the most Bombshell can do is monitor the Autobot leader's thoughts. With his wound repaired, Prime heads to Wheeljack's lab where the technican has been installing a chemical tracker in Skids. The device should allow him to follow the fuel trail left behind by Blaster, and hopefully lead to the Cybertron seven. Prime is still suspicous of Donny Finkleberg (the human who supplied the information) and insists that he accompany Skids on his mission. Donny will hear none of it but becomes more co-operative once Skids relieves him of his $25,000 cheque from Triple I (as payment for his services as Robot Master). The deal is that Finkleberg can have his money on completion of the mission, and it seems he has little choice but to agree. Bombshell however, sees another opportunity and this time plant a homing device inside Donny's wallet, hoping to lead the Decepticons to him.

Skids and Donny depart and Prime turns his attention to the Aerialbots. Following the near disaster at Hoover Dam their minds have been blanked, ready to be reprogrammed and given life by Prime's Creation Matrix. Unknown to the Autobot leader, Soundwave is eavesdropping via Bombshell's cerebro shell, and intends to tap the Matrix when it is released. As Prime gives the Aerialbots life at the Decepticon base the Stunticons are simultaneously born!

Later on a rain-soaked highway, Skids and Donny have a definite fix on the Cybertron Autobots when they witness a crash. A woman has careered off the road and into an electrical pylon. Skids immediately transforms and goes to her aid - leaving the selfish Donny to complain about getting soaked! Shortly after this noble act makes the TV news as reporters interview the woman. It reaches Walter Barnett who starts to believe there could be some truth in the theory that not all robots are evil, but in Circuit Breaker's eyes there is just another robot loose that she has to hunt down! Megatron also sees the broadcast and decides that the Stunticons can make amends when they eventually catch up with Skids and Donny. The quintet are duly dispatched to find them.

A few hours later and Skids and Donny still travel the long highway, and the weary protests that he needs to stop at a motel and sleep. As the pair pull up at a suitable establishment, Skids asks Donny to press the shutdown button on his dashboard so he too can benefit from a period of downtime... The next morning the motel car park is surprisingly full with four sports cars and a truck, but Donny doesn't seem to notice as he reactivates Skids and they hit the road again. They soon finding themselves stuck in a traffic jam and someone behind them is not as patient! It is the Stunticons storming through and ramming cars off the road! Skids is trapped and has no alternative but to radio Prime for help - this is the perfect job for the Aerialbots! Suddenly the Stunticons transform as terrified humans flee from their cars, including Donny as they close in on Skids!

******

Comments:

The shutdown button on Skids' dashboard is a very suspect idea. It appears that Skids cannot activate this button it himself, and no reason is given to why he needs to be shutdown anyway! To advertise it to Donny seems like asking for trouble. Aside from that, its great to see the Stunticons in the comic for real this time. It is just a shame that we have such a dodgy explanation of how they were given life, with Megatron intercepting the Creation Matrix via Bombshell's cerebro shell planted in Prime! It seems unlikely that Matrix energy should be picked up as though it were a radio signal, and how come Prime didn't realise?

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