Me Grimlock no like taggers!

Marvel U.S. > Issue #59
Previous Issue Next Issue
Marvel UK > Issue #249–251
Previous Issue Next Issue

Why would anyone EVER rehire Starscream?



Ratchet cares not for your maturation and wishes you were more like 1984.

Grimlock has never been one to mince words—only metal. No sooner is he reactivated that he goes right for the kill, tackling Megatron in his dino-mode. Still reeling from his recovery, though, he is easily dispatched by Megatron. The Decepticon laughs at Ratchet's meager attempt at treachery, but the surgeon taunts him back with the assertion that his little mindless engine of destruction, Starscream, isn't quite as perfect as he'd like.

Before he can push the issue further, Megatron is interrupted by Bumblebee, who manages to delay the fiend temporarily by blowing several neat holes in his chest. After catching up with Bumblebee and informing Jazz of the extent of his new Pretender powers, Ratchet takes off to deal with the situation on the Ark.

Meanwhile, on Earth, Starscream has begun to destroy Scorponok's Decepticons in the glorious name of Megatron. As Prime finally starts to wise up on everything that's been happening over the past few hours, Screamer sends his new, invincible Pretender shell to destroy the Autobot. At Zarak's bidding, the remaining Decepticons leap into the fray as well, only now on Prime's side.

The Autobot shuttle has successfully redocked with the Ark, but even with the full allotment of Autobots available, they are having little success disarming the bomb. Their prisoner, Blackjack, is less than helpful, as he says the timing sequence simply cannot be stopped once it's begun. Knowing that they'd be unable to escape the blast radius in time, much less evacuate all their wounded from the medical bay and stasis chambers, Kup continues working on the bomb in a desperate attempt to bypass the booby-traps and disarm it.

On Cybertron, Megatron removes the threat of the Autobots by tossing each of them out through the side of his fortress, one at a time. Bidding his Powermaster and Micromaster servants to go after the Pretenders and keep them occupied, Megatron devotes his time to searching out the missing Ratchet and whatever other little surprises the medic might have in store. At that moment, Ratchet is trying to make contact with the Ark, in the hopes of helping them with their little "exploding" problem.

The battle against Starscream is not faring very well at all, as he disables the last of the operational Transformers besides Prime and Zarak. However, one of his earlier victims, the Autobot Hot Rod, manages to regain his senses long enough to photon-blast Starscream's Pretender shell, and the impact is strong enough to send sympathetic waves of pain back to the owner. As Scorponok joins in, a circuit is completed, and suddenly Starscream's personality shell program gives way, just as Ratchet intended. The whiny coward is back, and he quickly assesses the situation and begs Scorponok for lenience and sanctuary.

In his fortress, Megatron catches Ratchet fiddling with the trans-time dimensional portal. Believing the Autobot is attempting to escape, he bats him aside and begins to gloat over the sprawled body that all his enemies will soon be dead. Ratchet corrects him, informing Megatron about the glitch he installed in Starscream's new software. Furthermore, as Megatron sees with his own eyes, Ratchet wasn't trying to escape, he was bringing the Ark's explosives to the fortress. Panicking, Megatron attempts to throw himself through the portal to safety, but Ratchet tackles him. Outside, the Autobots and Decepticons cease fighting as a sudden, massive explosion consumes the entire base, and apparently Ratchet and Megatron along with it.


Writer: Simon Furman
Pencils: Jose Delbo
Inks: Dave Hunt
Colorist: Nelson Yomtov
Letterer: Jim Massara
Editor: Don Daley
Editor-in Chief: Tom DeFalco

  • Originally published: Mid-November, 1989

Major characters

(Numbers indicate order of appearance.)

Autobots Decepticons Humans


  • None yet identified.

Items of note

  • In an interesting nod to future stories, Bumblebee calls Ratchet "the best surgeon this side of Hydrus Four!"
  • The fate of Ratchet and Megatron will be followed up on in US #69–70.
  • Transformers Universe profiles for the Seacons are found after the main story.
  • With issue #249 of the UK comic the cover logo changes from Action Force to G.I. Joe the Action Force. This had been explained as a merger between the European and American groups in a mini-comic given away with issue #245 and reflected a change in the toyline packaging.


Let's see what you can see...

This article is in need of images.

Specifics: UK covers
  • U.S. cover: Grimlock vs the Micromasters while Megatron approaches by Jose Delbo
  • UK issue 249 cover: Longtooth's secret by Mario Capaldi
  • UK issue 250 cover: Christmas celebration by Andrew Wildman
  • UK issue 251 cover: Red Alert and Kup by Gary Erskine

Ooohhh, sparkly!


Merry Christmas, everyone!


  • None yet identified.
Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.