Tag Archives: Bob Budiansky

Maximum Spike – The Transformers Issue #38 – 1988

The issue opens on the crew of Transformers that were leaving Nebulos at the end of the 4 Issue Mini-series Transformers Headmasters. The leader, Galen, is the head of Fortress Maximus and he has ordered his people and the Autobot refugees on Nebulos to leave the planet in search of Earth to answer a distress call that was sent by Goldbug (Back in Issue #37). They left for that reason and also so that the Decepticons would follow them and leave Nebulos alone. Nebulos had experiences 10,000 years of Peace until the Autobots showed up and the people became suspicious and afraid and eventually right back to their warring ways. One person in particular, Lord Zarak even went so far as to call upon the Decepticons for help in ridding Nebulos of the Autobots.

On the flight to Earth Brainstorm has made some major adjustments to Fortress Maximus. He has doubled Fortress Maximus’ size and quadrupled his fighting power. This was at the behest of Galen. Galen, who was the leader of the World Watchers, citizens of Nebulos charged with keeping the peace on Nebulos. The citizenry quickly turned against Galen when he choose to site with the Autobots and allow them to live on Nebulos. Then, he later underwent bio-engineering to change his body to be able to transform into the head of Fortress Maximus. Galen lost the love of his life, Llyra, the daughter of Lord Zarak because she believed the lies that her father had told about Galen. Later when she realized the truth and went to Galen, Galen lied to her to protect her.

All of this war and fighting has changed Galen, and not for the better. He is driven to end the war with the Decepticons at any cost. His compassion is all but gone at this point. He has become cold and distant as well as a bit ruthless. The strain of keeping it together when the world changed overnight has gotten to him and his team is feeling that as well.

This issue is the first time that the words “Binary Bonded” are used to describe what has happened to the Nebulans and the Transformers to create the Headmasters. We also see that the editors fixed the mix up between Gort and Stylor. These guys now have the correct names.

When Fortress Maximus and his new enhancements are complete we are introduced to a new Autobot, Cerebros. Fortress Maximus is too large to have Galen as his head anymore so Galen is now the head of Cerebros who then becomes the head of Fortress Maximus. Another one of those Transformers who is just created despite having not life from the Creation Matrix. Fort Max is now truly a titan. He transforms into a fully functioning battle station. Cerebros is the same size as the rest of the headmasters. Galen puts on his helmet and transforms into the head of Cerebros, which in turn transforms into the head of Fortress Maxmimus. Galen can feel the awesome new power emanating from Fortress Maximus. Power that, I feel, is going straight to his head and changing him even more.

On Earth we are presented with a scene of utter destruction. Sparkplug Witwicky’s garage and home has been completely destroyed. A car pulls up and out jumps a young man with blond hair, he looks very much like Buster Witwicky but is older. This is Buster’s brother, Spike. Our very first introduction to Spike! I always liked him int he cartoons and wondered why they went with Buster as a character in the comic books. Spike runs past the police line and starts searching the rubble for his father. Luckily, Sparkplug Witwicky is a tough old bird. He spent a day trapped under the rubble but was alive and well. The garage was destroyed by Ratbat and the Predacons who were looking for Buster and Goldbug plus the rest of the Throttelbots.

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