Marvel Comics continuity
Lord Zarak was a high-ranking politician of questionable morality and ethics. Though generally believing he worked for what was, in his own mind, the good of all Nebulos, he tended to be close-minded, dishonest, manipulative, self-aggrandizing, and excessively proud. He loved his daughter Llyra very much, but was a political rival of her young and idealistic lover Galen.
When the Autobots arrived on Nebulos, Lord Zarak became convinced of their sinister intentions -- even though he himself engineered some of the "evidence", such as causing Blurr to seemingly attack a crowd of Nebulans. Later, Zarak took more direct action, and used information gleaned from the Autobots to contact their enemies, the Decepticons, and inform them of Fortress Maximus's whereabouts.
When the malevolent Decepticon contingent led by Scorponok arrived on Nebulos, his mistake should have been obvious, but Zarak continued to claim he wanted nothing more than to make Nebulos safe. To that end, he convinced Scorponok of the advantages of the Headmaster process developed by the Autobots, and ultimately binary-bonding with the Decepticon leader. He soon found himself overwhelmed, first by the raw power at his command, and then by the force of Scorponok's personality, which he claimed was "reprogramming" him, causing him to act against his own will. After capturing the Autobot Headmasters and leading the Decepticons through a series of destructive battles, Zarak finally realized what he was doing, and with his last shreds of decency, freed the Autobots so that Nebulos might still have a chance.
The Autobots left Nebulos, and Scorponok ordered his Decepticons to pursue. In a battle within the caves of Mount St. Hilary, Zarak used his small size to pursue a potential human hostage into the deeper caves, where the larger Fortress Maximus could not follow. Zarak and Galen eventually came to fisticuffs, till Zarak used his mind-link with Scorponok to blast the ceiling over the human. Rushing to save the human, Galen was killed, to Zarak's delight. Unfortunately, the human then took control of Fortress Maximus, and the Decepticons were driven into retreat.
Zarak used his humanoid form on several occasions to operate discretely on Earth. He acted as the head of the Z Foundation, a Decepticon front operation on Earth designed to get humans to destroy the Autobots. He also acted as a "manager of talent" in the wrestling world, bringing in the Air Strike Patrol to take on the popular Roadhandler in the ring.
Though Scorponok dominated at first, it seems that ultimately, Zarak's mind also exerted influence. The bonding between Scorponok and Zarak seemed to have the unexpected side-effect of causing their minds to fuse into one composite being. It was Zarak who, in one last act of individual choice, nobility and self-sacrifice, freed Galen and the captured Autobot Headmasters so the Decepticons would follow them away from his beloved world. Their bonding may be part of the reason that Scorponok became more sympathetic towards the Autobot cause towards the end of the series, ultimately sacrificing his life against Unicron.
- Llyra: Daughter
- Blowpipe: Brother-In-Law
- Unnamed (possibly deceased) wife
- Voice Actor: Stan Jones
Lord Zarak was a vile dictator, the leader of the Hive, a group of telekinetics who have enslaved the population of Nebulos. While the Hive could not control Transformers as they could normal machines, Zarak nonetheless used his machines to capture and bully the Decepticons into supplying Headmaster and Targetmaster forms for the other ten members.
Zarak later rebuilt the Hive's underground city into the giant Headmaster body Scorponok, with a special suit that allowed him sole control over Scorponok. In the end, Zarak/Scorponok lost to Fortress Maximus and the Decepticons and Hive fled Nebulos. Conflict between Zarak and Galvatron for leadership was present.
Zarak talked in an almost monotone voice, showing little emotion and never anger. While he retained his body, he was never shown to walk without his Headmaster suit and may be a paraplegic. One eye was also always closed; he may be blind in it or missing it.
IDW comics continuity
Scientist Mo Zarak was the reclusive chairman of the Zarak Consortium, a front for an inner circle of maverick scientists called the Cranium. He was approached by Scorponok, a renegade Decepticon who ignored the Transformers' Code of Interplanetary Conflict, who conspired with Zarak and his team of scientists to create a new, enigmatic technology. Within the inner sanctums of the Cranium's labs, at least one fusion of Nebulan and Cybertronian technology was created in the form of a re-engineered Nebulan specimen.
However, this research was halted 29 stellar cycles ago when an Autobot peacekeeper, Ultra Magnus, infiltrated the Cranium and engaged Scorponok in battle. Zarak, worried that their work would be destroyed in the crossfire, was killed by friendly fire. Zarak's wounded, opened torso revealed he himself had been re-engineered with Cybertronian technology. Scorponok escaped, with a major headwound, through an artificial wormhole generator, but the fate of Zarak's corpse was not revealed.
- A first name, Mo, is given for Zarak in IDW's Spotlight: Ultra Magnus. No name other than "Zarak" is given to him in any other continuity. Whether Teletraan I: The Transformers Wiki considers this a retroactive addition to all versions of the character or relevant to only the IDW continuity depends—because we're children here—entirely on how awesome the new name is. The new name is hilarious, which is practically the same as awesome, so there.