Friday, February 23, 2007

What Might Have Been - Part 3

I hope you've been enjoying the scripts posted this week. I'll have a few more comments during these installments, done as before in [bracketed italics], since these two drafts were especially rough (I'd barely started work on Part 4!). I'll also have some closing comments at the end.  (Links for Part 1 and Part 2, if you missed them)

Transformers: A Continuation
By Mark Baker-Wright

Part 3

(Picture: Fortress Maximus fighting Galvatron. Cosmos, Huffer, Brawn, Powerglide, Seaspray, and Warpath scattered around, trying to help Fortress Maximus)
Caption #1: A lot has happened in the past couple of days.

Caption #2: Fortress Maximus, with the help of Spike Witwicky, returned to operational status only to fight Galvatron moments later. That time, Fortress Maximus defeated Galvatron. Then, after returning to the Ark, Fortress Maximus fought Megatron, and again defeated him (sort of). Fortress Maximus, with the help of some recently revived Autobots, is fighting Galvatron once again. Megatron is about to join the battle.

Caption #3: See a pattern forming here?


(Picture: Warpath looking on as Fortress Maximus and Galvatron fight)
Warpath: Look at us. Just standing here, watching while our new leader fights for his life to save the Ark. Fortress Maximus helped give us back our lives...


(Picture: Warpath transforming into tank)
Warpath: Can we do less?


(Picture: Galvatron w/target sighted on him [Warpath's point of view])
Warpath: Hey! Decepticon!


(Picture: Galvatron looking up)
Galvatron: What?


(Picture: Cannon blast hits Galvatron, explosion. BLAM!)


(Picture: Galvatron still standing. Looks at Warpath)
Galvatron: So, this little gnat of an Autobot thinks he can defeat Galvatron? Ha! How foolish!


(Picture: Brawn w/Cosmos and Powerglide)
Brawn: C'mon Autobots! Let's show this Decep what we're really made of!


(Picture: Galvatron hit from all sides)


(Picture: Seaspray shot from blast from off picture)
Voice (off picture): Leave my brother alone!


(Picture: Fortress Maximus looking around)
Fortress Maximus: No! It can't be!


(Picture of Action Master Megatron. Similar pose to first shot of Action Master Prime in issue #80)
Megatron: Yes! It can! It is! Megatron is back!


(Picture: Windcharger, w/Beachcomber behind, aiming at Megatron)

Windcharger: But not for long, Megacreep!


(Picture: Windcharger fires! Battle resumes. Autobots caught in middle by Megatron and Galvatron.)

(Scene change: Ratchet in repair bay)
Ratchet (thought to self): I hadn't planned on releasing this Autobot until the others were more adjusted, but he's the only one who can really help defeat Megatron.


(Picture: Life support pod w/nametag: "Omega Supreme")

(Scene change: Back to battle. Fortress Maximus surrounded by minicars w/Galvatron and Megatron on either side)
Fortress Maximus: Fight on, my brothers! We still outnumber the Decepticons! We can still defeat them!


(Picture: Galvatron fires at Brawn, barely misses)
Brawn: Whoa! A little too close for comfort!


(Picture: Powerglide transforms into plane)
Powerglide: It's time to kick some Deceps' tails!


(Picture: Megatron firing and gloating)
Megatron: Ha! You pathetic Autobots actually think you stand a chance! I'm more powerful than ever before! Nucleon has made me invincible!

Voice (off picture): Oh!?!


(Picture: Omega Supreme aiming at Megatron. Omega Supreme is almost twice as tall)
Omega Supreme: Shall we find out just how invincible?


(Picture: Megatron shooting several shots at Omega Supreme. No effect.)
Megatron: No! You won't defeat me again! No!


(Picture: Galvatron fighting Autobots. Watching Megatron and Omega Supreme)
Galvatron: (thought) Hmm. This new Autobot seems more than a match for my "younger" self. Perhaps I'd better back out to decide a way to best defeat this new threat.


(Picture: Galvatron flies away, Autobots still shooting. Megatron sees Galvatron's action)
Megatron: No! You can't leave me here alone!


(Picture: Megatron flies off, as well. In another picture, the Autobots gather around Omega Supreme.)
Brawn: I've never seen Megatron so scared of anything! What did you do to him Omega Supreme?

Omega Supreme: Megatron and I have met once before.* Of the eight Decepticons in his party, only he and one other survived.

Caption: *See Marvel US issue #19. How's that for good memory?
Fortress Maximus: Well, I'm certainly glad you showed up when you did. We weren't doing too well in that battle.

(Picture: Powerglide, a bit battered up, in robot mode)
Powerglide: Well, let's get back into the Ark. Doc Ratchet has some work to do.


(Scene change. New Jersey. Decepticon Headquarters. Still in a state of disrepair following the Decepticon Civil War of Marvel US issue #73)


Caption: Elsewhere

(Picture: Starscream in headquarters, has found something important)
Starscream: At last! I've found it! After our rather "surprise" landing on this planet, I knew I'd need to come here to heal, to plan an attack on the Earth, and to find this....


(Picture: Starscream's Pretender Shell in a storage closet)
Starscream: My Pretender Shell! I left it behind when Primus took us to Cybertron. Now, with its power, defeating the Autobots will be much easier.

[I intended to put a scene here, but never got around to writing it, where Ratchet tells Fortress Maximus that his link with Megatron is now severed, due to the completion of the nucleon's work. Also, as to why Starscream is alive and kicking, I'll explain that a bit more at the end. All he cares about is that he's alive.]


(Scene change: Back to the Ark. Huffer approaching Fortress Maximus and Ratchet)
Huffer: I don't know how to tell you guys this, but you messed up the Ark pretty bad. I don't see how we'll get it back together.

Ratchet: Maybe we won't need to. I've just finished repairing the long range sensors, and I detect an Autobot vessel coming towards Earth. We may be able to use it to get home.

[This was intended to be the Autobots making good on their promise to return the Neo-Knights to Earth. However, if this project had continued, I might have chosen to omit this dialogue, and have the return of these Autobots be a surprise, if and when I brought
them back at all.]

Huffer: Well, that may be. But the Decepticon threat to Earth still exists, and we need a base from which to fight them. The Ark is in no position to protect us.

Fortress Maximus: Perhaps I can help.


(Picture: Fortress Maximus surrounded by other Autobots, except Ratchet, in wide open field)
Caption: Later

Fortress Maximus: This looks to be a good spot.


(Picture: Fortress Maximus transforms to city mode, while head transforms into Cerebros, with appropriate caption explaining. A second picture would depict Cerebros pointing to the city)
Cerebros: In this mode, Fortress Maximus can serve as your headquarters while we wait for the Autobot ship to arrive. [This dialogue would have been changed if I had chosen not to mention the ship earlier. FM would have remained as the Autobot's new base for some time regardless.]


(Picture: Gasket and Grommet drive up)
Caption: As Cerebros speaks, two vehicles drive out of the city...


(Picture: Vehicles combine to form Cog)
Caption: ...and transform into one robot.


(Picture: Cog)
Cog: Although I'm still Fortress Maximus, in this mode you can call me Cog.


(Picture: Seaspray pointing to Cerebros)
Seaspray: But I thought he was Fortress Maximus!


(Picture: Cog and other Mini-Cars, focusing on Warpath and Cosmos)
Cog: This is Cerebros. He is controlled by Spike Witwicky, a human to whom I am binary bonded. Our minds are joined in our Fortress Maximus mode.

Warpath: Weird!

Cosmos: So what are we waiting for! Let's get in and try it out!


(Picture: As the Mini-Cars enter the base, focus on Cog and Omega Supreme)
Caption: As the rest of the Autobots enter Fortress Maximus' base mode, Cog stops Omega Supreme to talk to him.

Cog: Omega Supreme, with the rest of the Autobots setting up headquarters here, the Ark is left unprotected. I need you to protect the Ark while Ratchet revives the remaining Autobots.

Omega Supreme: I will protect the Ark with my life, commander.


(Scene change: Starscream, now in Pretender shell, at Decepticon Headquarters. Seated at controls for sensors)
Caption: Elsewhere

Starscream: Soon I will be ready to strike the Autobots' heart, the Ark. I can only assume that Ratchet, if he survived the crash, is reviving the Autobots still inside. I must make sure not to underestimate my enemies as I have done in the past.

Voice (off picture): That is fortunate, Starscream.


(Picture: Starscream looking up)
Starscream: What? Who?


(Picture: Galvatron and Megatron)
Megatron: Because it would be a terrible mistake for you to underestimate us!

End of Part 3


Transformers: A Continuation
Part 4


(Scene: Inside the Decepticons' New Jersey Headquarters. Megatron, Galvatron, and Starscream [in Pretender shell] are examining Decepticon repair bays)
Megatron: I must say, you surprise me, Starscream. To think that most of these soldiers were deactivated at your hand. I would not have thought you capable of such a feat.

Starscream: Yes, Megatron. At the time, I controlled the powers of the Underbase and used them in an attempt to destroy all the Transformers. I would have succeeded if not for Optimus Prime's intervention.*

Caption: *See Marvel US issue #50


(Picture: Megatron putting Starscream in his place)
Megatron: And if not for my intervention, you would still be a tangled mass of circuits in Earth orbit.* I suggest you remember that, and weigh your loyalties accordingly.

Starscream: Yes, commander.

Caption: *US issue 57


(Picture: Megatron looking at bays, talking with Starscream. Galvatron should be visible in the distance, looking on.)
Megatron: Under the command of Scorponok, these Decepticons were allowed to lay here gathering rust while a civil war developed. Now, with so many of the Decepticons on Cybertron, I need these warriors more than ever. We need to start revival processes.

Starscream: If I may, commander, most of this base was destroyed in the recent battle. We have neither the resources nor the equipment to begin to revive these Decepticons.

Megatron: Until recently, I shared a mental bond with the Autobot surgeon, Ratchet. Apparently, both of us were revived by a substance called nucleon. I also know that the Autobots still have quantities of this nucleon, for they were using it to revive their comrades. We need to obtain some of this nucleon for our own uses.

Starscream: But how, Megatron? How?

Megatron: You are impatient, Starscream. That is why you will never lead the Decepticons. Wait and see. I have a plan.

[I see that Galvatron never says anything at all in this scene, despite being present. I probably would have revised the scene to include him better in a future draft.]


(Scene change: Northern Pacific Ocean. Seaspray, in hovercraft mode, traveling on water)
Caption: Off the west coast of Canada.

Seaspray (thought to self): This is great! I almost never got any assignments on Earth before! It always seemed like such a waste. They made me change my nice, Cybertronian form into this Earthen shape, and then I never got to use it!


(Picture: Rear view of hovercraft as Seaspray speeds by)
Seaspray (thought): I'd better not waste any time, though. I've got a mission to do. When we Autobots repaired the Ark and used it to become spaceborne, we left some equipment behind in Oregon.* We need that equipment if we are to repair our ship enough to even use it as a base, let alone get off the ground!

Caption: *See US issue #38


(Picture: Seaspray disappears in distance)

(Picture: Shockwave, in gun mode, follows)

And that's as far as I got. Where'd Shockwave come from? I'll get to that later....

You may have already noticed that I've ignored UK continuity in these scripts, as at the time I wrote them, I'd never seen them. I've also commented that G2 (Generation Two) hadn't even been considered a possibility at this time. Most of what's here still would have held up, with some modification, though. The biggest plot point that would have been difficult to dovetail into G2 would be Fortress Maximus' "why didn't I check?" bit in G2 issue #2. Indeed, that "checking" forms the entire starting point for my plot. Being a responsible Autobot, I don't see how Fortress Maximus could have avoided it. In fact, we know that he had to go back to the Ark to return the large Fortress Maximus body, seen deteriorating in storage there in the G2 comic. Why wouldn't Fortress Maximus have bothered to check for suspicious activity at that point? However, I think even this could be dealt with if I wanted to.

For future plans, Megatron would have been able to get a large enough supply of nucleon to revive the Decepticons in storage in New Jersey, while the Autobots would continue to revive more of their number in Canada. Shockwave would have succeeded in thwarting Seaspray's efforts to salvage any technology from Mt. St. Hilary, and would have used the equipment himself to set up his own base of operations from which to make life complicated for both groups of Transformers.

Starscream doesn't realize it yet, but he has also been doused with nucleon, enabling his survival. He would soon become an Action Master, but would lose the ability to control his Pretender suit in the process. I assume that Shockwave simply survived the crash, although he would logically conclude that he would need to lay low for a little while to assess the current situation after the unexpected arrival on Earth (especially if he witnessed the crazed Galvatron of Marvel US #79). He would eventually have to steal some nucleon to become an Action Master himself, in an effort to gain enough power to combat the already nucleon energized Megatron and the powerful-enough-without-nucleon Galvatron. The minicars and Omega Supreme would eventually lose their transforming powers, and I'd toyed with the idea of having at least one be stuck in vehicle mode. Most likely Seaspray. (Since most of THESE characters weren't Action Master toys, I figured I could get away with that!)

If I needed to dovetail with G2 (which I repeat, had not yet been created when I wrote these drafts), MUCH later, a cure for nucleon would be found, and the Transformers would regain their Transforming powers (actually, I probably would have eventually gotten around this anyway). Megatron would eventually be thought destroyed, and all the other Transformers would either be destroyed or go back to Cybertron. Megatron, though badly damaged, would remain on Earth, unknown to everyone else, to plot a return to power, eventually resurfacing in G.I. Joe to be turned into a tank. (Max's "why didn't I check?" could then refer to THIS incident, rather than the end of the US series)


Here is a list of Autobots and Decepticons not yet seen that I deemed available for rebirth in this series (when you see parentheses around a group name, assume that I mean all the individual members of the team, unless I specifically state otherwise). In almost all cases, they would have at least temporarily become Action Masters, despite the fact that no Action Master toys existed for the bulk of the characters:


Autobots:

MiragePerceptorHound
(Protectobots)BluestreakGrapple
HoistJetfireSmokescreen
Tracks(Technobots)


Decepticons:

Ratbat(Seacons)(Predacons)
OctaneAstrotrainBlitzwing
BuzzsawLaserbeak(Terrorcons)
IguanusThundercrackerSkywarp
(Stunticons)(Combaticons)(Constructicons)1
RumbleFrenzy
1 The Constructicons were the only group that would have gotten stuck in Merged form as an Action Master. This was to keep in line with the fact that Action Master Devastator was actually made as a toy.

I hope you've enjoyed this look at what might have been. I'll be back next week with regular blogging.

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