An announcement & some Transformersness you might be interested in ...

First off, I've decided at the end of this year I'm deleting my old Robotech Comics Universe website. I've been paying something like $8 a month for years to keep it banner free, and finally just couldn't do it anymore -- I'm so busy with so many other things that I doubt I'll ever get around to updating it the way I want to, and it's basically become me paying a monthly fee to do nothing with it. So now there's ugly banners all over it, and really, I can't stand to see it like that, either. Thus, come January, I'm taking it out behind the shed and putting a bullet in its head. If you have any requests for documents from there you'd like to still see on the 'net for future generations, I'll gladly post them up here and stick them in the "Posts Worth Reading" section for posterity.

Speaking of preserving things for the future, have you heard about the Transformers Classics line coming later this year? Hasbro's taking a lot of their classic Transformers characters, the ones from the first three years of the line (through the 1986 animated classic Transformers: The Movie) and doing up nice modern toys of them without all the ridiculous gimmickry that Transformers toys have kind of suffered from the past few years. No more half-baked homages here, either -- no, they're saying outright that these are supposed to be the exact same characters from 1984-1986. Newly redesigned figures of the real Optimus Prime, Bumblebee, Megatron, Starscream, and so on, rather than the watered-down versions from Transformers Armada and its sequels.

Anyway, one of these characters they're redoing is Jetfire, who if you remember was originally a VF-1S Super Valkyrie toy, licensed to Hasbro by Bandai -- in short, Skull One with a new red & white paint job and Autobot stickers on it. For the cartoon they completely redesigned him and called him Skyfire, but if you looked hard enough you could tell that the design was still strongly influenced by the original Valkyrie design. Today, got a hold of a photo of the new toy. I think you'll find it interesting.

Swing-wings, FAST packs, and head lasers, oh my! Half Valkyrie, half the cartoon Skyfire design, all pretty cool to my ROBOTECH & Transformers-loving eyes.


  • Not that much of a Macross fan... but would be a nice counter-part to my period Jetfire. Definately nice and definately interested.

    By Anonymous Cyc, at 25 July, 2006 17:45  

  • The story of Transformers's creation is as interesting as Robotech's in its own way. In fact, you could actually consider the original Transformers to be the Robotech of toy lines...because what Hasbro did was take left-over overstocked toys from several unrelated Japanese toy lines, throw them all together, and write a new story around them. That's why the original Transformers toys came in several different scales—they were actually several different toy lines.

    And it just so happened that one of those toys was the original Macross Super Valkyrie—apart from the Deluxe Insecticons, the only Transformers toy made by Bandai.

    When Hasbro commissioned a Japanese anime studio to make a TV series based on their toy line, they had to redesign the cartoon character, since they didn't have the license to do animated Macross stuff, Harmony Gold did. (And also, they would have wanted to try to avoid Japanese fan confusion, especially since the Transformers episodes would end up being dubbed into Japanese and shown on Japanese TV too.)

    The funny thing is that Transformers was so popular in Japan that the Japanese studios went right on making Transformers anime seasons after the American company stopped commissioning them. Transformers actually went on for three complete TV series and an OAV before fizzling.

    The Japanese Transformers shows only revived after the American revival Beast Wars was dubbed into Japanese and shown over there. (In a strangely ironic turn of events, Beast Wars was kiddified for Japanese consumption just as much as if not more than Japanese anime imports that get shown on TV over here--they even went as far as changing the gender of one of the characters.) There were several more Japanese Transformers shows made over there, while Beast Machines was being made over here...and in a further irony, after Beast Machines, the American company started importing and redubbing the Japanese shows.

    Robotech seems downright simple by comparison, doesn't it?

    By Blogger Chris Meadows, at 25 July, 2006 18:19  

  • There were other Bandai toys in the Transformers line. Roadbuster and Whirl were also Bandai. All of the toys mentioned, Jetfire, Roadbuster, Whirl, and the deluxe Insecticons were originally toys made by Takatoku, and all anime licenses. Notice that none of them are in the show as they are in the toys.

    By Blogger Ginrai, at 25 July, 2006 21:11  

  • No way!, the Robotech Comics Universe site is really great for the Robotech comic fans! It is really a shame that it will be deleted; can't it survive at least with banners or something. Still, a lot of thanks for its existence!.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 25 July, 2006 21:16  

  • Hey, like I said, if you think there's any specific super-important data on Robotech Comics Universe that needs to be preserved on the interweb for all eternity, let me know via comments or e-mail or something, and I'll hammer out some sort of revision and it'll be here henceforth. I've already flagged a few pages that I'll definitely be revising in some fashion and archiving here at the blog -- the big long publication list, probably the original 1985-1998 comics timeline, and some (if not ALL) of the general overviews of the series. The "putting the poor thing out of its misery" imagery was a little harsh; it's more that I'm planning on transmuting it into material for the blog than actually killing it for all eternity. That FORM of the site is going away, but selected material from it will live on here.

    By Blogger Jonathan, at 25 July, 2006 21:52  

  • I really hate to see the Robotech Comic Universe go away. They're aren't a lot of any active Robotech comic book-related websites listed on the search engines these days. Please keep it up and have it updated whenever possible.

    By Blogger Adm. Lisa-Hayes Hunter, at 31 July, 2006 08:29  

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