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Member Since: Sat May 17, 2008
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Iron Man Unit 007

Subj: Re: Review of RODIMUS PRIME marvel UK
Posted: Sat Dec 19, 2015 at 06:31:06 am EST (Viewed 524 times)
Reply Subj: Re: Review of RODIMUS PRIME marvel UK
Posted: Fri Dec 18, 2015 at 07:54:49 pm EST (Viewed 2 times)

    In the comics, Rodimus was for the most part in control and was a good leader. Sure there was the fact that he still had to fill Optimus Prime's shoes and those are big shoes but Rodimus was more then up to the task.

I would disagree with this description.

Rodimus was almost entirely wracked with self doubts during his long run as leader in the UK series. There are so many more examples of his doubt than there is of his ability as a leader.

These doubts started immediately after the events of TFTM in the story 'Wanted: Galvatron Dead or Alive'. He (decisively and pragmatically it has to be said) puts an reward out for Galvatrons capture or death, however upon discovering that Galvatron is alive and well in the past is filled with guilt for not destroying Galvatron when he had the opportunity to do so.

Upon discovering that Deaths Head has taken his contract and travelled back in time to kill Galvatron, Rodimus literally has his head in his hands with pain and grief about the collaterol damage his decision will likely cause - something he probably should have been aware of when he first put out the reward for every mercenary in the galaxy to hunt the Transformers greatest and most powerful villain.

In another scene in the same story in which Rodimus evades an ambush by a Decepticon hunter-killer team with a well placed and tactically brilliant ambush of his own, but then admonishes his own troops because they had just terminated 'six sentient beings'.

This is all evidence that Rodimus struggles to balance his compassion for living beings with the practicalities of being a leader and winning a war. He is in turn admonished by Kup about the importance of acting decisively in battle if they are to avoide thousands of innocents dying.

Rodimus inability to make a decisive decision and stick to it then means that he has to travel to Earth 1987, leaving the Autobots of 2007 leaderless at a time when the Decepticon army is in resurgence and against the advice of his most trusted advisors.

Rodimus accepts that the whole mess on Earth (where literally millions of humans are at risk from Galvatrons volcano based power generator) is a direct result of 'critical errors of judgement' on his behalf, and in the end he even manages to foul up his attempts to fix the whole thing, ending up transported back to the future before he can stop Galvatron and leaving the Ultra Magnus and Goldbug of 1987 along with a human female to stop the most deadly Transformer of all without his assistance.

With Galvatron still on the loose and about to destroy a large part of the Earth, what does Rodimus do upon being unceremoniously returned to the future? You would think that he would go immediately back (we know that he has the time travel technology to do this), but no - he does literally NOTHING about Galvatron for TWO YEARS! Its like he completely forgets that the most evil and deadly Transformer of all is rampaging around in the past on a planet largely unable to defend itself!

Later, in 'Legacy of Unicron' Rodimus cancelling of his earlier deal makes him a target of assassination by Deaths Head himself and costs the lives of several good Autobots along the way.

In that story Rodimus monologues about the burden of leadership, his inability to end the stalemate that the war has become, and yearning for 'simpler times'. When ambushed and beaten by Deaths Head he considers simply giving up and accepting death. He later has a resurgence of confidence however, accepting that as Matrix holder he is perhaps the only one who can stop the Decepticons.

Upon escaping he then goes full circle and once more offers Deaths Head a financial reward (despite all the worry and angst that caused him the last time), this time in order to kill Cyclonus and Scourge. Yet more evidence of the inconsistancy og Rodimus thoughts and actions. Of course this doesnt go to plan and Deaths Head ends up killing Shockwave and installing Cyclonus and Scourge as joint leaders of the Decepticons instead.

The removal of Shockwaves infinately logical mind as leader of the Decepticons results in a massive all-out attack by Cyclonus and Scourge (although under the influence of Unicron) intended to reduce both sides to just a few survivors.

Rodimus goes to the planet Junk to stop Unicron but ends up berating himself once more because he is unable to stop Unicron without killing all of the people he went there to save (the Junkeons), claiming "all I've done is make mistakes" and even considers cancelling his attack on the Junkeons despite the fact he knows that they will continue to attack and kill his Autobots.

In 'Space Pirates' Earth 1987 is still dealing with Rodimus inability to decisively and perminantly deal with Galvatron (now released from his volcanic tomb), and his presence in the past along with Cyclonus and Scourge (two enemies that Rodimus also failed to deal with) liteally leads to a crisis that puts all of existance at risk (the time rift). This rift causes the destruction of Quintessa in 2007, which in turn causes the Quintessons to attack Earth and Cybertron 2007 in search of a new home, destroying many good Autobots.

Rodimus investigates the loss of contact at Autobot City and is robbed of the Matrix resulting in him becoming Hot Rod once more, but far from this being a disadvantage it is this conversion that actually brings about victory because the loss of his raw power means that he once again has to rely on his inventiveness and never-say-die attitude, and ultimately defeats the Quintasson with a sneaky underhand trick (as was always Hot Rods modus operandi).

In 'Time Wars' the crisis caused by the time rift - and Rodimus long failure to stop the Transformers responsible for creating it - leaves him with the unenviable choice of either travelling once more into the past or saving his Earth which is about to be sucked dry by the Decepticons of that era.

This is now 2009 and two years have passed since Rodimus made any attempt at all to stop Galvatron, who is ultimately the source of all of the problems that now threaten all of reality. It was after all the presence of Galvatron in the past that lead to that eras Shockwave brainwashing Megatron, who subsequently kills Cyclonus whose death 20 years before he is due to be created tears a rift in time and space.

Once again Rodimus travels back in time but is unable to stop Galvatron, and the crisis is ultimately ended only by the return of Optimus Prime, the assistance of one Decepticon (Shockwave) who returns the corpse of Cyclonus to the void, and the sacrifice of another (Scourge) who throws himself in.

In the end its difficult to see what good - if any - Rodimus does at all. All he does is seem to create more problems, never solutions, and 'Time Wars' (which was the result of several years of storytelling involving the cast of TFTM) is the end result of literally years of Rodimus being unable or unwilling to stop Galvatron - who as a future Decepticon has to be considered Rodimus direct responsibility.

Thats not the end of the calamity though. In 'Aspects of Evil' when the Autobots of 2009 return home after the Time Wars, they find themselves in an altered time line in which Galvatron is alive and well and ruling Cybertron. This costs Blurr his life. That whole time line is a result of Rodimus failure to stop Galvatron once and for all during the events of TFTM or in the four years that followed - several of which he spent doing literally nothing.

Later in that story we have an episode that once again shows that Rodimus is perhaps much more effective as Hot Rod as he stops an entire Decepticon attack and takes on Shockwave single handedly, beating him (as he puts it) through 'blind stupidity' by using the illogical nature of his actions to dumfound Shockwave who is of course governed entirely by logic - a course of action that Rodiums would be simply incapible of doing.

Rodimus last appearences in the UK series occur in issues 251-254 where it is revealed that he has become corrupted by the essence of Unicron, who is only able to do this because of the doubts and fears that Rodimus is plagued by. This results in Rodimus murdering several of his own Autobots and ultimately ends in yet another stale mate in which it is suggested that it is unicron who is left with the upper hand.

A little long winded, but that is essentially a digest of all of Rodimus Primes significant stories in the UK comic series. There are some continuity headaches in some of these stories, and it may be possible to put some of the blame on tardy writing (probably the most obvious explanation for Rodimus completely forgetting about Galvatron for a whole two years).

Taken on face value however it is difficult to give Rodimus much credit as a leader. He acts inconsistantly or indecisively time and time again and set in motion a chain of events that cost the lives of many, nearly destroys the entire universe, costs the Autobots of 2009 Cybertron, and ultimately his legacy in the UK comic is that he ends up a refugee floating in space with nothing more than a rag-tag bunch of Autobots left and with Unicron perhaps more powerful than ever.

    He also still had the weakness that if the Matrix is not in him or near him he will revert rather quickly back to being Hot Rod in both body and mind.

The events of the UK series as above if anything make out Hot Rod/Rodimus to be much more effective as a warrior than he ever could be as a leader.

    Now here's my problem with that: if Unicron permanently reforms Megatron into Galvatron then why doesn't the Matrix permanently change Hot Rod into Rodimus?

Different powers I expect. Rodimus is changed by the matrix - the power that Unicron uses is 'something else'. There is an inconsistancy that in the comics Optimus Prime does not seem to get any stronger or weaker regardless as to whether he has the Matrix or not.

    Rodimus for the most part led wisely and well in the UK comics, he wasn't the picture perfect/cookie cutter leader that Optimus was. I felt he was a better character for that.

Well theres far more evidence of Rodimus folly and mistakes than there is of any decisive victories or examples of leadership - in fact I cannot recall a single instance of action by Rodimus that could be clearly stated to be a straight forward success, unlike optimus who almost always made the right decision first time.

That 'weakness' does however make him a more interesting character in many ways. You referred to Optimus as the 'Captain America' of the Autobots. This is probably quite accurate as both exhibit an almost infalable history of action and decision making, however I personally list John Walker as my favourite Captain America for exactly the same reasons I like rodimus - it is their weakness rather than their strength that makes them heroic and relatable.

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