Transformers issue 75 is here and twice as big as normal. Got love the extra content. Especially when it has such a great writer behind it. So lets find out what happens when Unicron reaches Cybertron. But first, lets check out this cover!

Transformers_75_Yoshi

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Taking up most of the cover is the face of Unicron as he is holding up the planet Cybertron and pours out our main cast of Transformers directly into his mouth. The image should convey a sense of defeat and hopelessness, but some how I don’t get that. The story inside does that exceedingly well, just not the cover. Written on the cover above the logo, “Double-Sized All-Out action anniversary Issue.” Along with, “The End?! …Or The Beginning?” which gives one holding the cover some hope about the plight of the Transformers.

Transformers_issue75_coverWe open up issue 75 with Transformers fleeing for their lives as Unicron begins to claw at the planet ripping it apart. Unicron then begins to eat handfuls of the planet and comments on how good it tastes.

Transformers_issue75_UnicronXaaron, pleads with Powermaster Optimus Prime and Scorponok to calm their troops and bring them together to battle Unicron. Even Xaaron himself puts up a fight and for a moment confuses Unicron, only to be killed by him in the end.

Transformers_issue75_XaaronGalvatron, who believes like Primus that the only way to bring down Unicron is if everyone is united, must provide some inspiration for the Transformers. At full power he attacks Unicron, but is batted away like a fly. But this does provide the inspiration needed and soon the whole planet of Cybertron is fighting against Unicron. Here, Scorponok makes his last stand. The Neo-Knights also get involved, thought Circuit Breaker remains in shock.

Transformers_issue75_GalvatronThe battle doesn’t it look good. It never did. But backup arrives with the Ark and the Autobots onboard revived by the Nucleon. Grimlock uses the ship in away to punch Unicron across the face.

Transformers_issue75_ArkThis whole time Powermaster Optimus Prime has been struggling to keep his Powermaster bond from coming apart. Asking, begging, to hold out just a little bit longer. Suddenly the Creation Matrix Arrives with Thunderwing. Together they confront Unicron, but Thunderwing is torn apart.

Transformers_issue75_MatrixUnicron Transforms into his planet mode and readies to eat Cybertron. Then Unicron is blasted by Circuit Breaker, who is so enraged that she pours every last bit of energy she has into the blast. This allows Optimus Prime enough time to get the Matrix and together he flies into the mouth of the planet. Unicron is overtaken and explodes.

Transformers_issue75_Prime

Sometime later, after the battle, Battletrap and runabout are on Cybertron. Runabout goes to Check out some movement he sees int he shadows and is quickly pulled underground by a claw. HI-Q sees the bot devoured.

Transformers_issue75_Runabout

My Thoughts On This Issue

My god this was a good issue. A heavy issue. A deep issue. For sure it was worth the cover price then and worth the current going price now. No doubt.

Starting with the cover, I can’t figure out what the anniversary is they are referring to. Maybe someone out there reading this can clue me in, but it seems like it should have been called something like, “75th issue spectacular.”

From page one, I got lost in this story. What I mean by that is that I forgot I was reading a comic book and I was just totally absorbed into the goings on within. Not since the ‘Man of Iron‘ story line have I been this captivated by a Transformers story.

Something my review does not speak to is the total and absolute disrepair and hopelessness I felt as a reader as a result of the Transformers facing such a monolithic opponent . With all the scenes of Unicron ripping into and eating the helpless planet of Cybertron, the heartless killing of so many helpless Transformers. The scene where the most logical of Transformers, Shockwave says, “I am 100% certain that Cybertron, and every Transformer on it, is doomed!” hit me gut wrenchingly hard. I knew that this issue would change everything.

Transformers_issue75_ShockwaveEven the death of Scorponok hit me hard. I was not expecting that for one moment. I was not expecting to be so touched by it. This issue was just filled with heartache. I tip my hat to you, Simon Furman. You got me to care about characters I originally didn’t.

Transformers_issue75_ScorponokI can’t help but think that during the writing of this issue, Simon Furman must have known that the comic was going to be canceled. Maybe I’m wrong here. It just seems like with so many deaths and so many Transformers coming back in one issue,it feels like he is getting ready to wrap this up. As a reader in the 80s, they might have been clueless to this. But as a reader now, its fun to guess when Simon Furman might have know the end was coming.

Marvel’s Transformers comic could have ended here, and I would be okay with that. But, lucky for us we still have a few more issues. So what did you think of issue 75? Do you have any insight I might not have? I’m going crazy wondering what’s going to happen next.

Transmission Letters This Issue.

Transformers_75_TransMissionsDear Transmissions,

Fanstastic! Superb! Chilling! Passionate! Frightening! TRANSFORMERS #72 was out of this world! I kept nagging the owner of my local comic store to find out when this issue was coming out, and i’m glad I did. This story has reached a new high – Decepticons vs, Deception, Optimus Prime finally getting some backbone! Top-notch work! The art-work, the story, they’re by far the absolute best i’ve seen in these pages. I’m on the edge of my seat in anticipation of what will happen next! I actually felt the intense closeness of the sewer way when Galvatron was chasing Xaaron. I felt like a cornered fox! Top-notch again! If there was an emmy for comics, TRANSFORMERS would deserve it. I’m excited about what the Dinobots will do, what galvatron will do, what Prime will do, what Unicron will do, and what I’m going to do to pass the time until next month! The big #75 is comic up, and I have a feeling it’s going to kick some tail! I want it now! I know I sound hyper and I am! I can’t wait to find out what this will all lead to! to heck with Twin Peaks; Everyone should read this series.

Ken Sapp, Jr.

Dale City, VA

We agree totally, but we’re afraid this letter definitely merits a loud “Nurse the screens!”

Dear Transmissions,

I just have one question I need answered, and I hope you can answer it. My question is this – is issue #75 going to be the last issue of TRANSFORMERS? The reason I ask is that a friend of mine told me that Nth Man, G.I. Joe and TRANSFORMERS were soon to be canceled due to lack of sales. At first I didn’t believe hime, but now that Nth Man is gone, I’m a bit worried. I certainly hope this is not so, as over the last two years TRANSFORMERS has become my favorite book, and I will miss it al to if it goes.

Antonio Hall

Caruthersville, MO

Okay, We’re not going to pull any punches with this answer. First off, no – issue #75 is NOT the last issue of TRANSFORMERS. If we have our way, it will reach and pass #200! But, and it’s a big but, our position is beginning to look on the slightly shaky side. We’ve done pretty mcyh all we can on our end, making the stories better and giving you a great regular art team, so the rest is up to you! Get your friends to start reading the book, and badger your local comic shop to stock TRANSFORMERS if it doesn’t already. Basically, get people to see all the good things happening here, and we’ll be around for a few years yet!

Dear Transmissions,

God, Shockwave is a boring old twit, isn’t he? Scorponok was right; the job of leading the Decepticons needs fire and spirit. It hardly bears thinking about, but if Shockwave became Decepticon leader he might actually get something done! All things considered though, I’d rather see a Decepticon leader who’s a bit uncertain about whether he’s doing the right thing or not than some megaprocessing clod who can’t sen feel the most basic of emotions – anger! Interesting side plot developing here with Galvatron and Xaaron in Cybertron’s sewer system; I’d love to see this one given some more space. I’m sure we’ll see this tied up in issue #75 (Gack! Please don’t kill everyone!). Speaking of Primus, I was thinking (Shocker, eh?) that for the pomposity afforded him, he really has been a rotten god. What a deadly inheritance he’s left his children – forcing them to pick up the task of destroying Unicron, in effect discharging his own personal responsibility in the matter. It also seems odd to me that while Unicron is a totally evil creature, he always seems to do a little good through his actions. In #67, he gave the Auobots the chance they needed to fight back by taking Galvatron, and in the movie his assault on Decepticon-controlled Cybertron allowed the Autobots to retake their home world. Is this some statement about the inseparability of good and evil? The tension’s building-and we only have three issues till it snaps!

The Muse of Mecha

Portland, Or

Do our visual receptors lie, or is this an intellectual letter on the Transmissions page? Whatever next?! Seriously thought, O Muse of Mecha (shame about the name!), you do raise some interesting points. The Decepticons really do start to “get things done” after the Unicron war, but under whose leadership? You’ll have to wait and see! As for Primus, we hope you now see that his actions were well intentioned (in a goodish sort of way), and that the Transformers were created not to carry the buck for him, but to carry on after him. As for Unicron doing some good, we feel this is completely unintentional on his part! By the way, have you snapped yet?

Dear Transmissions,

I’m a twenty-year-old TRANSFORMERS fan and have been following the comic since way back in 1984. I really like the Wildman/Baskervill art, and Simon Furman is doing an outstanding job with the scripting. I thought TRANSFORMERS # 72 was pretty good, but will Scorponok and Shockwave put aside their differences now that the Neo-Knights have entered the battle? The Neo-Knights are the first super hero team to debut in the TRANSFORMERS comic and I think they are MARVELous! Will they get their own series? By the way, the cover of #72 was awesome!

Jeff Steele

Jackson, MS

Dear Transmissions,

TRANSFORMERS #72 was incredible! Shockwave, Starscream, and Ravage are three of my favorite characters. Please do not kill them again. The Neo-Knights are HOT! I never much liked mutants, but I love ‘em in TRANSFORMERS. It’s always good to see Circuit Breaker back. Simon Furman is becoming one of my favorite writers, and Andrew Wildman is the best artist TRANSFORMERS has ever had and probably ever will! So until Unicron double dates with Galactus, make mine Marvel!

Ed Ball

Columbus, GA

Wow! Two “thumbs up votes for the New0Knights in one batch of letters! Actually, judging by the way we’ve read, several of you are beginning to war to our resident robot hunters. The actual name, Neo-Knights, has gotten a cold to indifferent reception since we asked your opinion, so here’ what you can do. Now that you’ve seen them in action, jot down a new name for the team and send it in to Transmissions. If we actually use the name you suggest (no promises here; we might just decide to stick with the Neo-Knights tag)m we’ll send you a copy of the Death’s Head graphic novel, “The Body in Question” (by Furman and Senior) by way of a thank you!

Dear Transmissions,

I LOVE TRANSFORMERS< so you can just tell Rob Tokar (issue #70 to stick his head (and his opinions) in Galvatron’s particle cannon (preferably when Galvatron is in a bad mood!).

Tanya Dean

N.S.W., Australia

It was a joke. Y’know, Rob Tokar, editor of TRANSFORMERS, writing in and saying he hated….sigh!

Dear Transmisisons,

The reason i stopped buying TRANSFORMERS was the art! Yuck! Nothing personal, but I stopped reading until I saw issue #70! Andrew Wildman is WID! I tell you, I love that man, that man answered my prayers! He gave TRANSFORMERS a whole new meaning, Actually, I love the whole creative team: Simon, Andrew, Stephen, Rick, Nel, Rob and Tom (well maybe not Tom!). Hoping you like my drawing!

Eric Allard

Quebec, G2e 1T4

We liked it, and here it is. But will Tom like it?! (check it out!>>)

Ads This Issue.

Youseph

The host of the YOSHICAST and TRANSMISSIONS Podcast. Transformers enthusiast and comic book collector.

This Post Has 14 Comments
  1. Here is the answer to your anniversary question: back in the day, every 25th issue (with the exception of issue 25 itself, was considered an anniversary. Look at every 25th issue of Action Comics or Spiderman as an example.

    Yes, I think Simon even mentioned that he thought this would be the end. It might have been in the UK comic (which again duplicates US stories whilst adding more)

  2. I think this was the ‘defining’ issue of the entire Transformers issues. This is the one that those who have stayed with it for this long – recall most fondly. And it’s usually the one that fetches the most on Ebay. Simon Fuhrman does an amazing job tying together the last 74 issues – and raises the stakes appropriately. The next 5 issues are still solid, but I agree with what you wrote – that Fuhrman saw the writing on the wall. And as a result, he chose to definitively ‘end’ the series instead of hold out hope and try to end on a cliffhanger. Great summation of this issue. I’ve been looking forward to your review of this.

    1. I can’t help but think how funny it I that he was trying to end the series without giving the reader hope when you have Generation 2 and Regeneration One that have picked up where issue 80 left off. Then again, maybe that’s why they where able to continue.

  3. To be fair, I think whilst Simon knew it ‘could’ well be the end, there was some hope that it wasn’t going to be – at many convention appearances, he’s spoken of what ‘might have been’ if they’d been given the chance to carry on (IIRC I think he kinda had enough plot / ideas to get through to the #100 landmark, which he ironically reached with ReGeneration One) and most of that made it in to either #76-80 or RG1’s 80.5 – 100.

    Given the chance, the Neo-Knights ‘quest’ to find The Last Autobot would have taken longer than the three issues it did, the Decepticon forces would have had more worlds to invade (potentially encountering something akin to Jhiaxus from either G2/RG1) and more could have been made of the Autobots being stranded on a ‘dying’ Cybertron.

    Given that Simon was then able to take all these (and more) dangling plot threads and pretty much wrap it up in about three issues, and it still read pretty damn well, speaks volumes of the man and why so many of us love his work to this day. Right up to the end, here in the UK, there was hope just a month before ‘the end’ as our bi-weekly #330 told us of a relaunch in #333, which I guess suggests that there was some hope that even if Marvel US wasn’t going to carry things on, Marvel UK might bring their guy home and keep things going – of course, #332 brought us the sad news that the relaunch wasn’t to be and so it was all ‘over… finished!’

    Except of course… ‘it never ends!’ 😀

  4. Hey Yoshi I’ve been waiting for you to finally get to issue #75 and review it. First off Sean is correct in that back in the 80’s Marvel celebrated every 25 issues with an anniversary issue, I’m not sure if they still do it today but I’m sure it was a pretty easy cash grab for them back then. Now onto the issue, personally I liked the cover and although I missed Andrew Wildmans fantastic art I think Geoff Senior did a pretty good job on this double sized issue. I’m sure he had to work overtime to get this issue done, on a side note Geoff Seniors art has really grown on me over these last few years, I must be getting wiser in my old age(haha). Anyway I really enjoyed this issue and it still stands as one of the best TF issues ever published and it has many iconic moments that I still remember, specifically I remember the image of Prime sacrificing himself while flying headfirst into Unicron’s mouth while holding the Matrix in his hands. The other unforgettable image is Scorponok laying mangled on the ground with Prime reassuring him that he did a good job as he expired. I could keep going but I think you get the idea of how enjoyable I found the issue. Lastly I think the official cancellation notice to the readers is going to appear in the letters column in the next issue or two but I’m sure Furman knew that the books end was quickly approaching. What’s ironic is that back then The Transformers comic was probably selling tens of thousands of copies but the policy back then was once a book dropped under sales of 100k it was usually cancelled. In today’s market if the TF books sold what it did in the 80’s they would be one of the top books in the industry!! Gotta run but you might get a laugh that as I right this post my son has his Transformer toys littered all over the living room floor and he is watching an episode of the G1 cartoon. Good parenting if you ask me!!! Sorry for the super long post and I hope that you and the rest of the Transmissions crew are doing well and once again congrats on the exclusive cover, it’s well deserved and makes me proud to have guest hosted with you guys many moons ago. Later Yoshi.

    Tom Proscia

    1. So true about sales! But kids read more back then. One reason is internet, video games and the like (well, that’s more than one reason, but you know what I mean) You see, as a kid, baseball cards and comic books sold MUCH more than today because kids had less choices. Kind of like how “go to your room” was a punishment because kids didn’t have game systems, internet, etc in their room (of course, being sent to one’s room usually meant mom would be upstairs soon to spank you, but that’s another story…)

      Actually, comics today are probably read by as many adults as kids. It’s a different world now then 30 years ago. Kids are more spoiled in some ways (and some can DEFINITELY use a good helping of those spankings if you ask me!) Not all of it bad, but they definitely have access to more. I’ve seen baseball cards for sale (I actually didn’t know they were still made), but I don’t know of one kid who buys them, and my work involves being around kids (as a youth sports photographer) so I can take a fair sampling survey of kids’ interests. It is usually videogames and social media (that’s why when I was a kid, writing to the TF character (in the UK comics) was so cool-we had no social media!)

      Actually, that reminds me of something else, the UK comics had something called “Stock Exchange” where one could swap toys. One actually gave their address to do this. Even pen pal requests-you could have a boy or girl write to you so you could be pen pal friends. Now, it would be a DEFINITE no-no for a kid to give his address and ask for contact! Like i said, a different world! (In case you are wondering, I didn’t do the stock exchange-my parents lavished me with the toys, and also, it was mainly for UK readers as shipping is much more expensive, and would take much longer for me)

    2. Hey Tom! Good to hear from you again! Thanks for taking the time to comment. It’s a good issue and I can totally understand your excitement waiting for me to review it. It would have made a good ending, but I’m said their are only a small few comics left to review.

      Get yourself to TFCon this year buddy!

          1. It’s a shame you live so far away-I enjoy your thoughts so much that I’m half-tempted to lend you mine! Well, what then? Dreamwave’s comics?

  5. Hey Yoshi,
    Great review. This is the absolute high point of the G1 Marvel run. IMHO this Unicron battle is actually better than what we got in Transformers: The Movie. Regarding your musing about whether Simon Furman knew the end was near, he answers your question in one of his replies in the Transmissions letters page in this issue:

    Okay, We’re not going to pull any punches with this answer. First off, no – issue #75 is NOT the last issue of TRANSFORMERS. If we have our way, it will reach and pass #200! But, and it’s a big but, our position is beginning to look on the slightly shaky side. We’ve done pretty mcyh all we can on our end, making the stories better and giving you a great regular art team, so the rest is up to you! Get your friends to start reading the book, and badger your local comic shop to stock TRANSFORMERS if it doesn’t already. Basically, get people to see all the good things happening here, and we’ll be around for a few years yet!

    And I gave you my recollections of this time in the comments of your review of Issue 70:

    I can tell you that at the time 14 year old me in 1990 absolutely saw the end of the series coming. Transformers was off the air for a while now. The toys had become Action Masters and didn’t even transform anymore. No one I knew cared about Transformers anymore except me. The comics were the last hold out for Transformers, and it was building up to an epic face off with Unicron in issue #75. I was actually expecting #75 to be the final issue.

    I was surprised and pleased by #75’s letter page that had a note from Simon saying they weren’t cancelled… yet. But it also had a plea to get people to buy more issues because they were on the bubble. Unfortunately with no marketing budget and no Internet to spread the word, that plea went unanswered, as we all know.

    See, being an old timer with clear memories of G1 can come in useful sometimes! 🙂

    My memory seems to still be holding up!

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