If memory serves I was planning to return to the Super Powers Collection this round, but during a recent Saturday Night Showcase, I featured the cartoon miniseries Sectaurs: Warriors Of Symbion. When my friend Sean posted that the toys the show was based on had mini-comics I looked into it and found a website that carries the old mini-comics, the fan site Sectaurs.com. It seemed like a good idea to add this to the lineup of mini-comics along with Masters Of The Universe/Princess Of Power, Super Powers Collection, Atari Force, and the Dreamwave Transformers mini-comics.
For those of you who missed that, the Sectaurs toyline takes place on the planet Symbion, where a group of scientists accidentally set free a virus that mutated the entire planet. (And you wonder why some people fear science?) The people are turned into bug people and the local bugs into giant insects they ride called Insectoids, to whom they are psychically linked or “telebonded”. The Insectoid toys were actually puppets the figures could ride (except for a few non-ridable Insectoids that had other features), thus giving them a sense of life which is not bad for a riding beast in a fantasy/semi-science-fiction toyline. The story features two sides (of course), the good guys of the Shining Realm led by Dargon and the villains of the Dark Domain led by Spydrax, who seeks the lost science of the ancients, kept in a place known only as The Hive.
The Sectaurs mini-comics are similar to the Super Powers toys. Each figure has his own comic showcasing his adventure that demonstrates their character and talent. Today we’ll start with the leader of the good guys, Prince Dargon, and his Insectoid, Dragonflyer.
Sectaurs: Dargon And Dragonflyer
PRODUCED BY: Coleco
no credits that I can find, which is a shame, yet typical for mini-comics. Masters Of The Universe and Dreamwave’s Transformers are kind of a fluke that way.
Read along at Sectaurs.com and let’s get started:
The story starts as Dargon and Dragonflyer chase after a dumb kid who tries riding an Insectoid he isn’t telebonded to and that he doesn’t know how to ride. Then the saddle breaks and the kid nearly falls to his death. You thought riding a wild horse was bad, try to imagine it at 100 feet skyward. He’s lucky Dargon catches him. The “young spawn” thought if he could tame the animal he would be like Dargon and the other defenders of the Shining Realm. We saw someone like him back in the miniseries, but that kid was smart enough to be telebonded to his Insectoid before trying to ride him at 10 stories up!
Dargon returns to his patrol when he hears a sound coming from the Deserted Forest and has Dragonflyer go in to investigate. The Insectoid tries to warn him of danger he senses (insert Spider-Man reference here) and he narrowly avoids a trap set by a different kind of insect people who live in the forest and rush to attack them as they land. At least until they realize it’s Dargon and apologies on both sides are given. They are the Thornets (a combination of hornets and the thorns around the forest I would wager) and Spidrax has kidnapped their king. It’s one of those Mondays.
One pose for the reader later, we check in with Spidrax and his crew, with the captured king. Spidrax plans to turn the king over to his leader, Empress Devora (who wasn’t in the miniseries but is in the mini-comics and the short-lived Marvel series) where he will be ransomed back to his people, although Spidrax is hoping to enslave all the Thornets because he’s sort of a jerk. This is a reason nobody invites him to their parties unless he threatens them.
Then Dargon swoops in on Dragonflyer and yoinks the king away. Apparently Mantor, one of the other good guys, did know of them and told them all about Prince Dargon and the Shining Realm. See, this is what happens when you fall asleep during staff meetings, Dargon. The other Thornets rush in to attack but Spidrax, declaring he won’t be denied his prize or the Empress’ favor, takes of on Spiderflyer, his Insectoid…and I’m just noticing the naming here. Dargon. Dragonflyer. (Just a couple of letters switched.) Spidrax. Spiderflyer. I wonder if this is a trend or something that comes with the leaders? I’ll have to remember to check that for future installments.
Spidrax manages to destroy Dargon’s “vengun” (a gun that shoots venom darts instead of bullets…probably not lethal because guns are only good for kids if they don’t kill), but Dargon’s broadskall (which is totally not a sword except that it is) cuts his venom-tipped whip in half. So no guns, no swords, but whips and shields are okay? You can kill someone with a whip you know, or at least cut the skin open and do some major damage. But there’s the Thornets, who can fly without mounts, and their “skallthorns”…I don’t know what a “skall” is but a brief online search didn’t bring up anything insect related. Yet we have skall shields, broadskalls, skallthorns…I know I’m missing something somewhere. Anyway, Spidrax escapes and Dargon knows to pay more attention to the daily briefings of other races living next door to them.
I’m sorry there are no credits because the story is quite good for 19 pages of two-to-three panels. It’s not easy to fit a decent story in so small a space, but this comic does it well. I think the benefit of focusing on one hero and one villain plus a few neighbors and minions helps. It does a good job of setting up the world and showcasing Dargon’s character, talents, weapons, and steed. Nice job, guys. Next time I will return to the Super Powers DC Universe but I will be returning to these minicomics in the future. There are nine more to go, which also follow the character focus route, including one for the Hive playset. So there’s more fun on Symbion to come. Just don’t bring a magnifying glass on a sunny day. Some of them have flashbacks.