The Transformers #47
Marvel Comics (December, 1988)“The Underbase Saga” part 1: “Club Con!” WRITER: Bob Budiansky PENCILER: José Delbo INKER: Dave Hunt COLORIST: Nel Yomtov LETTERER: Bill Oakley EDITOR: Don Daley
The Decepticons turn their island spacecraft into a resort for humans. Naturally the Autobots suspect something, especially when Buster appears in their advertisement as the island’s “king”. Blaster goes to Sparkplug to help infiltrate the resort but Jessie talks her way into going instead. Together they find Buster and two offline Autobots who crashed to Earth centuries ago and contains a special message. Jessie’s “help” alerts the Seacons to their presence and they’re forced to leave without Buster or the Autobots but now aware the Decepticons have found something very important.
What they got right: Getting Jessie in a bikini. Just kidding. I do see Ratbat, being a business-minded robot, using a business as a cover, odd as a resort may be. We see Starscream is back to form but treating Ratbat differently than he would Megatron. (Comic Megatron wouldn’t come up with this scheme. Cartoon Megatron might have, though.)
What they got wrong: One of the Battlechargers (in Yomtov’s quick blue shading so I can’t tell which) is part of Blaster’s training team. That’s a mistake I usually see in the cartoon. The rest are mostly minor logic errors but I would be remiss not to bring them up. Why does Buster have a human-sized room if he’s chained up and would need a Transformer to remove the chain? How did anyone know that Raindance and Grand Slam ended up in a pirates chest and how? And why would humans go to a resort run by robots when as early as last issue we saw that human hates robots in this continuity? Finally, considering the actions the robots (mostly Decepticons but RATT and III have only recent agreed there’s a difference) have taken, declaring themselves a “sovereign nation” with a king Barnett and Forsythe know were kidnapped by the Decepticons, why haven’t they sent in their own investigation or declared their attacks an act of war and gone after the “nation” anyway?
Recommendation: A strange but interesting start to the four part “Underbase Saga” that will reach to issue #50, so that make this an important issue at least. It’s not a bad start to the event.