Pretenders are weird. As such, it makes sense that the most appropriate fiction involving them would come from the Japanese, who have a strong track record of churning out some of the weirdest things in the world. I'm referring, of course, to Transformers: Super-God Masterforce, the Japanese cartoon that followed the original G1 series and featured the Pretenders, the Junior Headmasters, the Powermasters and (squee!) the Seacons. The show happily embraces the whole robots-become-people thing and doubles-down with kids-become-robots. Plus, the Seacon Tentakil seems far more appropriate in a Japanese context. (Because, you know: the Japanese have a thing for tentacles.)
Happily, the Destron (Decepticon) Pretenders featured in Masterforce, who in the show are said to have taken the form of demons, have all just gotten a serious upgrade in the Archive! Here they are listed first by their English names followed by their Japanese designations.
Yesterday I drove with a couple Transfan buddies to CybCon 2008, a small Transformers convention in Tacoma, Washington. CybCon is run by Greg Gaub, one of the few people whose Transformers site has been online longer than mine. Back when I first started the Transformers Box Art Archive in 1998, I was using Gaub's animated "spinning logos" throughout. (You know, back when animated gifs on the internet were actually cool.) Anyway, I brought home quite a substantial haul, and I thought it important to share the details with you, because you never know when this information could save your life!
If you were to observe the bed in which Dollface and I nightly rest our weary bodies, you would see that it is perfectly situated between two street-facing windows. What you might not be able to see without peering behind the sleigh-style headboard are our two silent guardians, frightening away unquiet spirits, warding off ill will, protecting us from prying eyes. Our Pretender Gargoyles!
For those of you who aren't aware of them, Pretenders were a completely idiotic concept introduced in 1988 for reasons that escape me. In short, the gimmick is that there are tiny Autobots and Decepticons inside these organic-looking outer shells. They're in disguise, see? No one would ever suspect that a giant bipedal iguana-man, or a giant insect-man, or even a 20-foot tall human in a space suit were actually Transformers! In reality, the shells are stupid-looking, the little robots inside suffer from extremely poor articulation and often do not really resemble any kind of actual vehicle at all, and no humans were ever deceived by the giant iguana-man. So in general, I don't collect Pretenders. However, we return to the two mystery-bots that stand vigil while we sleep...
Wow, an update. Will wonders never cease?
Let's see, first the new additions. Because I am worthless slag, and do not promptly respond to emails, there were several people who edited the Scorponok scan. I decided to go with the one by Beige Zarak, who skillfully repaired and completed the foot, including the removal of the Hasbro logo. Thanks to everyone else who contributed an edit: Ted Colley, Shaun Martens, Vicken, Hoist's Garage and Bobby.
Let's welcome back Paul Heal from his vacation from cyberhell. He rejoins us with two new edits, of course: Bomb-Burst and Submarauder. Naturally, both can be found in Latest Additions. Ah, the home-stretch is so invigorating.