Beginning on Easter Day will be an eBay listing to commemorate the 30th anniversary of Transformers.
I am Bagging and Boarding 30 copies of the Convention Variant cover of Transformers Regeneration One #100. Each of the backing boards will have a sketch on the back. The 30 issues will be divided into 6 releases of five. There will be five sketches of Optimus Prime. Five sketches of Megatron – ya get the idea- then Ultra Magnus, Galvatron. RodimusPrime and Bludgeon. The Optimus Prime sketches begin on Easter Day at 8pm UK time and runs for seven days.
The idea behind this is to not only commemorate the 30th anniversary but to enable those who can’t get to UK conventions that I am attending to be able to get a copy of the comic and a sketch. Those of you who have seen me at conventions know that I do sketches but there are, needless to say, many Transformers and comic conventions that I won’t be at. Below are the five Optimus Prime sketches that constitute this release. Its pot luck as to which bidder will get which sketch but that’s part of the fun.
As you will see below I have decided to donate all the proceeds from the fifth winning bidder to the Make-A-Wish foundation. this is my favourite charity and the one that we support as Draw The World Together. Anyone not familiar with the activities of DtWT click the link and take a look. We don’t have a lot of time or facility to do much with DtWT these days so it is nice to be able to raise a bit of money for the charity.
S0. set your alarm for the start of the bid and cross your fingers.
The FINAL issue of the long running Transformers Comic Book Series.
Thirty years in the making, this is the final issue of the storyline that began way back in 1984.
This particular cover is a Limited EditionConvention Variantand is an homage to the first issue of the UK Transformers comic.
The cover is Signed by the artist, Andrew Wildman with Silver Pen.
The comic is Bagged and has a Board Back with an Original Sketch of Optimus Prime by Transformers artist Andrew Wildman.
This book is one of only five ‘Optimus Prime Sketch’ releases.
The top five bids will each receive one of these special 30th Anniversary pieces. Sketches may vary in pose as they are original and well, ya know what artists are like.
This series of five ‘sketch board’ books is part of a total of 30 releases to commemorate the 30th Anniversaryof the classic Transformers series. Over the next few months there will be a MegatronEdition. An Ultra MagnusEdition. A Galvatron Edition. And culminating in Rodimus Prime and Bludgeon Editions.
That is just five sketches of each character.
due to the rarity of these releases bidding starts at just £10 this will also help ensure that a good donation is made to the chosen charity. Details below.
For further information about these releases visit andrewwildman.net
All proceeds from the fifth winning bid will be donated to the Make-A-Wish foundation who grant Magical Wishes to Children and Young People who are fighting life-threatening conditions.
Some of you may have heard the Transmissions Podcast where – among many other things – they discuss Transformers Regeneration One #100. Its always interesting to hear what readers and aficionados make of the work one does. They really get under the skin of the whole issue with story, art etc. They mention right at the end that I am going to be saying more about my thoughts and feelings around Transformers. And I will. As much as they discuss the content of the book and also acknowledge the fact that we all had a chance to say something in the extra pages that the book had, they don’t discuss what we said. Maybe at some point they may or maybe that will be covered elsewhere. For those of you who have not read any of that extra material, below is my piece. Slightly different from what you will have read in the book though. This is the unedited piece. Hasbro asked for some changes to be made to what I had written before it went to publication. Some of you may spot them. I am happy with the changes that they asked for but I thought it might be interesting to show exactly what I wrote, grammatical errors and all…
As you will see, as far as I am concerned it is all very great to read, enjoy and discuss all the events of the story but with Transformers there is definitely More Than Meets The Eye.
It Never Ends?
There we are then. That’s it. All done and dusted.
It seems amazing that we ever got to this point. This comic book that has – in one form or another – been there for so long. As many of you will know I first drew Transformers back in the dim and distant 1988. at the time I was working on whatever anyone was throwing at me. I was young(ish) and had a growing family to feed. At that time Transformers was just another paid gig. It very rapidly became more than that as it became the thing that opened to the door to Marvel Comics. Once in that door Transformers suddenly became a victim of Marvel’s decision to not do toy books anymore. No matter, I was in and had the opportunity to move through the ranks at Marvel and the pleasure of working on some of the characters that I had grown up with such as Spider-Man and the X-Men. Those jobs came and went but after all these years it is still Transformers that comes knocking at the door. When something is that insistent and becomes for many the thing that defines you it is always worth having a look under the hood. See what’s really there. What is it about this book that it seems to have attached itself to me?
Then I saw it;
When IDW asked me if I wanted to do some interior art for a Transformers book I said no. When they asked me what it would take to get me to do some interior art for a Transformers book I pondered the question and responded that I would only do it if I could work with Simon and if we could have the opportunity to do something that really had some weight to it. Out of this and Simon’s parallel conversations with IDW the idea for RegenerationOne was born.
I am going to break the flow here to give out a few acknowledgments. We have gathered a great team together for this journey. Guido has done a great job stepping in when I had to step away, JP Bove’s interior colours have perfectly captured that synthesis of being a bit like the old stuff but definitely new and fresh and I think now stand alongside the amazing Mr Nel Yomtov for the amount of uninterrupted output of pages. Jason Cardy’s cover colours have given cinematic impact that have pulled readers in like a movie poster outside your favorite multiplex. Stephen Baskerville, what can I say. A consummate professional. No matter what I throw at Stephen he unfailingly does his thing and makes these books look the way they ‘should’. As for the words, well a huge acknowledgment to Jim Shooter and Bob Budiansky for creating this beast. Without them we wouldn’t be here. We may well be creating a book about battling robots but for sure it wouldn’t be this one. And lastly, Simon Furman. My long time partner in crime. The man who not only brought me into the Transformers hold but who, as a result of that opened the door to many a subsequent opportunity. Thanks Mr F, my acknowledment and respect to you.
So there we were. The idea to finally complete the Transformers story was not only an opportunity but a privilege. What needs to really be gotten here is that this book is the conclusion of the definitive Transformers storyline. Let me just emphasise that. THIS book is THE CONCLUSION of THE DEFINITIVE TRANSFORMERS STORYLINE. It is not possible to over emphasise that. Back in 1983 something huge that has become part of popular culture began. At Marvel Comics Jim Shooter and Bob Budiansky wrote a treatment for Transformers. There was nothing before that other than some ill defined toys. That treatment became the Marvel Transformers book and that storyline – the definitive one – fell silent in 1991, reared its head again in 2012 and the no kidding, final conclusion of that whole storyline is what you now hold in your hands.
But what really makes this concept resonate and give it its longevity is the fact that this is NOT a book about robots. quite the opposite. The term ‘robot’ was first used in the 1921 play ‘R.U.R. Rossum’s Universal Robots’ by the Czech writer, Karel Čapek. But these were human clones devoid of emotion. Transformers are if anything the opposite of that. They are sentient beings. They may be mechanical in their structure but they contain very human emotions and concerns. They are also from one source, The Matrix (later called The Allspark). This original singular source is what binds them and gives a unifying purpose to their lives. These themes are key to the popularity of Transformers in that it is an expression of much of what defines us as human beings. It has its roots in Hinduism, Buddhism, Enlightenment, Pantheism and subsequently many themes of Modern Philosophy. And that is what made me want to do this book. That is why we love it. A book about cool robots? yes, but about so much more. Its about us. About you and me. About the human condition. Its about separation, loss, pain, conflict and the pursuit of unification and oneness. Throughout its long life its always been there in that now familiar mantra; ‘Till All Are One’.
So there we are. The end. The End? They always said ‘It Never Ends’ and for Transformers that seems to be true. But for the Original Transformers storyline/continuity it very definitely has. Issue 100 of that seminal book final hit the stands on Wednesday 19th March. A very significant day for all those legions of people who, over the last thirty years, have enjoyed the ups and downs of the world of Autobots and Decepticons. After the hiatus of some twenty years it was a privilege to be involved in the continuation of The Transformers (not sure when the The was dropped) With the IDW book, Transformers Regeneration One. When it all finally ended I thought it would be great to write a piece about what it has been like for me to be involved in the book. After all, for many it is who I am. But rather than write one final farewell – which I did for issue 100 – I thought I would get some thoughts down as and when they occur. This is the first of those;
For me it started out as just another comics gig. A book that I knew nothing about and that only felt like a stepping stone onto other books. I wanted to draw Superheroes. This is something that I have mentioned in many interviews and Q&As. I was happy to be working for Marvel Comics but I didn’t want to do toy books. I wanted to draw Spider-Man and all the other characters that I had grown up with. At that time I guess I had been reading comics for, say, 20 years. When I consider that that was about 26 years ago it really does create context. Transformers have been a part of my life for longer than Marvel had at that point. Transformers has been there for all but a couple of years of my professional life as a comic artist. Its fair to say that without Transformers I would probably be yet another casualty of the big comics crash in the mid nineties. Many of us working in the comics industry back then were hanging on by our fingernails as we saw title after title get cancelled. Same happened to me. My final book for Marvel was the final issue of Force Works. I felt like it was unfinished business at Marvel but it was time to get out as the empire crumbled around us all. That is when I moved – sideways I guess – into Computer Game design and TV concept work and storyboarding. Things have been great for me in those areas but it is as a result of working on Transformers for Marvel and more recently for IDW that has enabled me to have a presence at some amazing conventions and that is great. So Transformers, it was very definitely time to move on. Time to draw a line under that work. But I salute you. Without you I wonder what life would look like now.
It’s the end of an era. After 30 years and 100 (or so) somewhat interrupted issues, the founding/grounding Transformers saga reaches its epic conclusion.
(#100 in a four-issue limited series!) hits the stands this
Wednesday (March 19th)
, and one way or another it is, definitively, the end. Storylines years in the making are wrapped up as the full extent of the threat to Cybertron (or is that Cybertrons?) is revealed. Of course, I’m not going to spoil anything here. Just to say that this is a conclusion not just to Regeneration One, but to the whole 100 (or so) issue saga. Seeds of this were sown waaay back, and while the substance of the overall threat has become more all-encompassing in the intervening years (between when the original series finished back in 1991 and RG1 starting up), the basic premise is what I was always pushing towards…