Friday, May 8, 2009

25 Years Since Everything Changed

I'm not quite as old as Kup (in my warm-up sketch, above) but today I feel it a little.

Today marks the twenty-fifth anniversary of the debut of Transformers. A quarter of a century ago, #1 of Marvel's limited series featuring the robots in disguise was released. I read of this with great interest - the news item popped up on various Transformers-related internet forums I visit, so it was hard to avoid - but I was about to let it slide without marking it. I'm just too busy to pop in a DVD (or preferably, ex-rental VHS) of the 86 Movie. Nor do I have the time to tinker around with any of my toys, or prise open any of the rapidly-multiplying pile of new, unopened figures I'm accumulating by the day.

And then I realised what I'm so caught up in doing that's preventing me from spending time with my robot chums. All I had to do was take a second and clock what was happening under my nose.

I'm drawing the splash page for an upcoming Transformers comic that I wrote.

Me: Drawing. Writing. Transformers.

The kid who didn't manage to get his own shape-changing toy robot until 1986, but who made and remade Lego effigies of Jazz and Optimus prime, and started spinning his own tales of giant alien robots in blank copybooks, filling them with lovingly-crafted scrawls of Bumblebee and Starscream...that little fella got to do it for real when he grew up.

Except by loving Transformers so much and dedicating himself to telling his own stories about them, and drawing them reflexively; OBSESSIVELY, over and over again, he never had to grow up.

I've said before that Transformers has ruined my life for the better, and it's true. They've been with me through so much, and though not in a conscious way, I've depended on them and been comforted by them many, many times, and not always in the distant past. And knowing the potential for a lifelong connection to a world where nothing is as it seems, it really spins my wheels to think that some kid might pick up something I've been lucky enough to have drawn for Transformers, and want to copy it and draw it for himself. Because that kid was me - is me - and yet now I've been given the keys to the chocolate factory, and have been gifted the chance to tell stories that can "Light Our Darkest Hour."

So it's Happy Anniversary, Transformers. Except now, I'M Transformers too. Until That Day, Til All Are One?

For me, it all ready is.

You've Been Nicked.


Denyer said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Denyer said...

Ahhh... you've convinced me to pre-order, damnnit. Wasn't going to touch anything more AHM-related after having seen most of the main series and read the way it's being marketed. Feels like a mess rather than a launching point for an ongoing.

Twenty-five years. The time does fly. Hope you're around and contributing for lots of it to come.

Nick said...

You too, Den'! Your website is a part of this mushed-up dessert we enjoy too, and your posts on the IDW boards are guaranteed good readin'! Maybe you'll get to play in the sandbox in an official capacity sometime; I know I'd like to see it.

Glad I grabbed a sales-spike with that doodle! I fully understand and appreciate the position you and others feel they're in with the books right now, but I think (hope) I've avoided the 'continuity patch' vibe people fear with these 'Coda' stories, and have delivered a direct follow-up to Spotlight: Kup that seems to organically flow from it. It all remains to be seen, obviously, but if you enjoyed my last Spotlight, I do reckon this'll be one for you too.

David said...

Sweet I loved Spotlight: Kup. I have spent the last few weeks watching Transformers G1 and Headmasters on DVD during my planning periods. I have started Masterforce. I'm also looking forward to the two sketches you are working on.

a w e n g said...

hey Nick, hows it going? Hope all is good.

I would like to post a request if its alright. From your Maximum Dinobot run, one of the things I was so Syched & looking forward to see is your rendition of the Monsterbots in robot form since they debut. Sadly we didn't get to see that, only in silhouettes. Would you mind posting your version of Repugnus, Grotesque and Doublecross in full view? Just felt like its incomplete. lol.

I hope this request is not constraint by any of Hasbro's/Idw regulation, etc. of most of all you don't mind sir. Thank you

Moondog said...

That is possibly the geekiest post I've ever read.
Kudos sir.

Kurisama said...

Hey Nick!

Mate, reading this post was like reading my own exact thoughts (only my guess is that u were a much better drawer-er-er than I was at that age, and well now, too - i guess, lol.)

Hit very close to home. I salute u, sir!

*Raises energon shot glass*

Synapse said...

"ruined my life for the better". LOL. Man, you rock ;)

And yeah, I'm SO glad AHM is finally coming to an end, but I'm even happier as we'll be getting more Nick Roche writing ;)

Take care.