CGC Registry

Marvel's The Transformers


Set Type: Transformers (1984)
Owner: AlphaPrimeIan
Last Modified: 10/11/2019
Views: 491

Rank: 1
Score: 5380
Leading by: 4
Points to Higher Rank: N/A

Set Description:

This is where it all started for me...

Due to the monetary windfall that resulted from the partnership of Marvel and Hasbro for the relaunch of the G.I. Joe brand in 1982, these two companies decided to renew their nuptials (and refill their coffers) with the introduction of another epic toy franchise.

In late 1983, early 1984, they utilized the uber-successful three-prong marketing approach which they devised for G.I. Joe. Begin with a Marvel Comic book which was distributed across America, pair the comic with a half-hour animated program constructed by Sunbow Productions that would air every weekday afternoon, and all the while utilizing the more traditional modes of advertising (magazine ads, television commercials, trade show displays, etc.) for an all-out media blitz. Using this tragedy of marketing strategies, the new brand’s success was inevitable. For the past 30 years, Hasbro’s Transformers brand has made hundreds of companies who’ve licensed their Autobot and Decepticon characters rich beyond imagination.

But what exactly happened behind the scenes at Marvel Comics all those years ago to get the ball rolling? Who were the creative types that struck the initial spark that would eventually turn into this scorching toy line; a brand simply overflowing with characters that reside in toy rooms all around the world? Is there a kid on the planet Earth that doesn’t recognize Bumblebee or Optimus Prime or planet Cybertron? Yet how many of those children know exactly where those names came from?

In the winter of 1983, Marvel Comics Editor-in-chief was handed the reins to develop the back-story and characters for the Transformers franchise by Hasbro. EIC Jim Shooter, in an act of good faith, delivered the project to writer/editor Denny O’Neil who was coming off his revolutionary 1970s run on DC’s Green Lantern/Green Arrow and who made his bones at Marvel by scripting and ending many of their flagship titles (ASM, Daredevil, and Iron Man). O’Neil chose to work on Transformers because the pay for the Marvels toy tie-in projects was usually larger than that of standard comic book fair.

However, it appeared that O’Neil didn’t “get it”.

His Transformers back-story and the characters he rendered were deemed unacceptable to Shooter, for even though he paid O’Neil for the project, the writers’ entire draft was scrapped with the exception of a few lingering details that remained. The most important of these details was that the heroic Autobots noble leader was named Optimus Prime.

So then, on Friday, November 18, 1983, at Marvel Headquarters on the weekend before Thanksgiving break, Jim shooter ran through the corridor that divided Marvels editorial offices desperate to find someone to recreate and develop the first series of Transformer characters over the weekend. A project that had to be completed by Monday morning. Shooter had taken it upon himself to draft an eight page treatment that delineated to his chosen writer the conical back-story of the Transformers and couldn’t wait to unload it onto the desk of a willing writer.

As Bob Budiansky recalls, he was the third or fourth choice to tackle the project. Upon asserting to Shooter that he could finish the job by Monday morning, the staffer wrote like a man possessed. In two short days Budiansky rendered all of the Transformers biographical information, authoring those iconic “Tech Specs” (technical specifications) profiles for what would become the first wave of Hasbro's Transformers. Other than retaining Denny O’Neil’s moniker for Optimus Prime and perhaps Prowl as well (it’s unclear if Shooter or O’Neil came up with the name for the Autobot strategist too). However, it was Bob Budiansky who named almost all of the 28 original Transformers and fleshed out their character traits.

Although he essentially functioned as the eminence guise of the Transformer universe, Bob is largely unrecognized for rendering these personalities and most of the other Transformers who occupy a hallowed place in “Generation One” cannon. Regarding his approach to authoring the original 28 Transformers Tech Specs, Bob states, “I knew that there was a certain use of language, a certain style of combining words and sounds in their writing that appealed to me... Drawing from my knowledge of comic books, science fiction, and my engineering background (I have a B.S. in civil engineering), I came up with jargon that I hoped would lead a pseudo-scientific, cool sounding veneer to the characters.”

And he nailed it on the first try. Then again, so did Shooter. For if we carefully review the eight page treatment that the EIC handed to Bob to use as a template when drafting his biographies, readers will be stunned speechless to find that all of Shooters words and ideas have been followed with surgical exactitude these past 30 years, whether in movie theaters, on the small screen, or in the four-color pages of comic books. What was originally slated to be a mere four-issue comic book miniseries sprawled into something unearthly; a licensed property with an entire universe all its own. What follows is the first paragraph of the original treatment. Nothing has been changed or altered in 30+ years.

“Civil war rages on the planet Cybertron. Destruction is catastrophic and widespread and yet no life is lost. None, at least in the sense that we know life, for the inhabitants of Cybertron are all machines. There is no life on Cybertron save for mechanical, electronic, creatures. As mankind is first among the organic denizen of Earth, intelligent, sentient robots are the dominant species on Cybertron. Even the planet itself is one vast mechanical construct. Perhaps there was once a real world upon which Cybertron was built on, into, under, and through until no trace of the original planet can be found, but the original of the planet is unknown, lost in an antiquity. Similarly, it is unknown whether the robotic life of Cybertron was originally created by some mysterious, advanced, alien race in the dim, distant past, or whether these strange metallic beings somehow evolved from bizarre, basic life forms beyond human comprehension.”

“What is certain is that sentient, robotic beings of Cybertron are destroying one another.”

Mark W. Bellomo (taken from IDWs Transformers Classics, Vol.1)
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All covers finished scanned in March 17/13. My books are also on My Slabbed Comics under AlphaPrimeIan. Also see my "Transformers (Marvel) Complete Set."
comic_category_sm Set Typecomic_presented_sm Best Presented

Slot DescriptionCert #GradeScore
Transformers 1 0990049079 9.9150 Shop eBay
Transformers 2 1287390007 9.888 Shop eBay
Transformers 3 0969705005 9.880 Shop eBay
Transformers 4 0764872011 9.880 Shop eBay
Transformers 5 1316525009 9.888 Shop eBay
Transformers 6 0912374008 9.850 Shop eBay
Transformers 7 0957908017 9.850 Shop eBay
Transformers 8 0004767032 9.850 Shop eBay
Transformers 9 0956407006 9.850 Shop eBay
Transformers 10 0190823030 9.850 Shop eBay
Transformers 11 1097023026 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 12 1078028019 9.839 Shop eBay
Transformers 13 1052070005 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 14 0957919025 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 15 0159032018 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 16 1040131013 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 17 0633600034 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 18 0715162025 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 19 0197336030 9.940 Shop eBay
Transformers 20 0177754008 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 21 0957912010 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 22 0901977014 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 23 0957911008 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 24 0957912016 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 25 0957919010 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 26 0957955024 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 27 0957919003 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 28 1059678007 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 29 1056112018 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 30 0155708017 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 31 1059673006 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 32 0079006009 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 33 0795942003 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 34 1018200010 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 35 1010548006 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 36 1018200011 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 37 0931461016 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 38 1059678013 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 39 0957960029 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 40 1059683015 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 41 0957931007 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 42 0957931005 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 43 0795977008 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 44 0795977009 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 45 0965733001 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 46 0965733002 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 47 0795977011 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 48 0957960004 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 49 0178120024 9.835 Shop eBay
Transformers 50 0957931009 9.850 Shop eBay
Transformers 51 0931461022 9.850 Shop eBay
Transformers 52 0795977015 9.850 Shop eBay
Transformers 53 0969631008 9.850 Shop eBay
Transformers 54 1012187015 9.850 Shop eBay
Transformers 55 0957931012 9.850 Shop eBay
Transformers 56 0178120027 9.850 Shop eBay
Transformers 57 0965733013 9.850 Shop eBay
Transformers 58 1198484001 9.850 Shop eBay
Transformers 59 1497175025 9.850 Shop eBay
Transformers 60 1055075002 9.850 Shop eBay
Transformers 61 1059666007 9.880 Shop eBay
Transformers 62 0181066011 9.880 Shop eBay
Transformers 63 0956750001 9.880 Shop eBay
Transformers 64 0185968006 9.880 Shop eBay
Transformers 65 0196666015 9.880 Shop eBay
Transformers 66 1059681002 9.880 Shop eBay
Transformers 67 0196666016 9.880 Shop eBay
Transformers 68 1093702018 9.880 Shop eBay
Transformers 69 1052995001 9.880 Shop eBay
Transformers 70 0986658016 9.880 Shop eBay
Transformers 71 1052995002 9.8160 Shop eBay
Transformers 72 1075041001 9.8160 Shop eBay
Transformers 73 1031085008 9.8160 Shop eBay
Transformers 74 1027809009 9.8160 Shop eBay
Transformers 75 1027809010 9.8160 Shop eBay
Transformers 76 0188679017 9.8160 Shop eBay
Transformers 77 1024352021 9.8160 Shop eBay
Transformers 78 1126735008 9.8240 Shop eBay
Transformers 79 1057659010 9.8240 Shop eBay
Transformers 80 0188678001 9.8320 Shop eBay

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