This week sees the release of issue #4 of Beast Wars The Ascending (the tumultuous conclusion). Series artist Don Figueroa, as many of you know, bowed out with issue #3, leaving Guido Guidi the not inconsiderable task of wrapping up this epic four-parter. A cast of, well, many, two worlds on the brink of total and utter destruction and 22-pages packed with battle action. It was a lot to ask, but I’m pleased to report Guido rose to the challenge magnificently, turning in (in my humble opinion) his best Transformers artwork to date. There really is a whole lot going on in this issue. On Cybertron Shokaract prepares to ascend to what he believes is a higher plane of existence, but (unknown to him) it will actually spell his total and utter obliteration, his ‘sacrifice’ heralding the return of the Transformers’ ultimate nemesis: Unicron. Trying to stop this happening are Big Convoy, Lio Convoy (and the Pack) and, from afar, Magmatron (who’s currently trapped in a timeless limbo). Following this so far? Good. Their efforts are hampered by Shokaract himself (who’s powered up to the max on Angolmois energy) and Shokaract’s heralds: Antagony, Thrustor, Hellscream, Max B and Hardhead. Then, on prehistoric Earth, the assembled Maximals and Predacons face off against Rartorata, Elephorca and Drancron, with Razorbeast battling alongside them (and, at the same time, battling the Angolmois corruption that threatens to consume him). Phew. Suffice it to say, the action starts on page 1 and doesn’t stop until page 22. And inbetween there’s triumph, torment and tragedy aplenty. No one is guaranteed to survive (and many don’t) and no happy endings are assured. In fact, as so often happens, the ending is also a beginning. Those who know their Beast Wars will be pleased the final scenes on page 22 (I hope!). Anyway, Beast Wars The Ascending #4 lands in stores on Wednesday Jan 9th (US) and Jan 10th (UK), and you can check out Don’s (sniff) cover by clicking on the image below. For details of all IDW’s Transformers titles visit their site here.


30 Responses to BEASTS SHOT (#4)

  1. Cool, now if only my subscription for this series has actually meant I received issues 2 and 3 I’d have been more excited. Time to try to hunt down another supplier. Ah for the days when there were actual comic shops around these parts.

  2. Mike Moran says:

    I am so bummed that Don is no longer drawing for us but Guido is awesome and I love your storytelling Simon.

  3. Best First says:

    I’m actually really looking forward to Guido’s slant on this – especially aftre seeing his Megatron in the BW Source Books… can we assume a follow up series based on the comments about the final scenes?

    On another note don’t suppose there is any news about Devestation 4?


  4. Bass X0 says:

    So this also sets up Beast Machines then?

    Mmm…. yeeeessss….

  5. B-W says:

    Although I expect such words will fall on deaf ears (blind eyes?), might I recommend AGAINST setting up new stories with every supposed ending? I’ve seen way too many stories end up stopped in mid-tracks by having cliffhangers that were left hanging when the company folded, the series was canceled, or a contract wasn’t renewed (I’m still rather steamed about learning that the Big Finish line of Tomorrow People audios will never resolve the cliffhanger set up this past April!).

    Let your endings be endings! That doesn’t mean you can’t pick up threads if/when you get another series pick-up. But this trend of never actually concluding a story when a mini-series ends is getting quite worrisome!

  6. Simon, your writing is AWESOME as always! I have a question, though: Any chance in the future of seeing a WHEELIE Spotlight? I think that’d rock and you da man to make it work! Peace!

  7. bassbot says:

    we saw wheelie in Spotlight: Prime, maybe that’ll be it… heh.
    Anyhow, Simon, cannot wait for this, i’ve always loved BW’s and your take has been fresh and made me care for the characters i didn’t really know.

  8. Wade says:

    Read it and…

    Aw, Simon, how could you?

    My new favorite BW character…

    Very touching scene though.

  9. Jazzblack says:

    Did somebody at IDW annoy Don? Is that why he has quit doing work for IDW?

  10. Rat Convoy says:

    Hoping that the Beast Wars series will continue. A series chronicling the rise of Megatron and his attempts to invent the transformation-lock virus and how he grew to hate his organic mode so much would be seriously cool, especially if we get to see more of The Pack and Grimlock.

  11. JUAN J. MUÑOZ says:

    Could someone please tell me why did Mr. Don Figueroa isn´t drawing Transformers “anymore”?

  12. Best First says:

    Don talks about his reasons for taking a break from TFs here:

    after reading the interview please make sure to read the comments from Don and IDWs editors – there is no intrigue or conspiracy here, he has just been drawing TFs as a fan and then a pro for an awful ong time and decided it was time for a change.

  13. Chris N says:

    “there is no intrigue or conspiracy here”

    Exactly the sort of thing somebody trying to cover up some intrigue or conspiracy might say! We’re onto you, Besters.

  14. Galmorzu says:

    Fantastic. I really loved it. I can’t believe you killed off Wolfang, but I really loved it, right up to the last panel. You totally need to keep B’Boom around, though.

    So (SPOILERS):

    Does this mean you can have a pre-Beast Machines story with the entire BW crew from the show? They don’t remember what happened anyway, so you could technically have Primal working alongside the Convoys for a period of time.

  15. Ralph Burns says:

    I was entertained by this issue.

  16. Black Bumblebee says:

    I noticed that you got a little annoyed by the comments on the IDW boards. Please don’t let the criticism get to you. You’re the best at what you do.

  17. simon furman says:

    BB, thanks for the words of support. Normally I have the hide of a rhino when it comes to such negative comments, but that one caught me at a low ebb or something. Upwards and onwards…

  18. simon furman says:

    I really think Don had just overdosed on Transformers. Given the amount of work he was doing and the amount that was going into every page (including numerous retro-designs and so forth) it’s not surprising he was feeling a little burned out. It’s easier for me as a writer to have a change of pace from time to time (Torchwood, Turtles et al), but Don was pretty much just doing Transformers.

  19. simon furman says:

    And just because the end of The Ascending kind of sets up Beast Machines, it doesn’t necessarily mean we’re done with Beast Wars. All sorts of stuff could (and must) have happened inbetween Meg arriving on Cybertron and Primal & crew getting over their amnesia or whatever.

  20. simon furman says:

    Wheelie. Hm. Never say never…

  21. Chris N says:

    Ah. So Spotlight Wheelie will be a Thunderball homage?

  22. Galmorzu says:

    (some spoilers ahead)

    Simon said it. The fact that our classic BW cast doesn’t remember anything before Beast Machines (other than running and screaming) means that there are countless stories that can be told. Primal et all can team up with the convoys as they lead an offensive against Megatron. There can be a whole war. The mutants can get involved from Earth and do something to cause Megatron to HATE organics (thus, giving his change of heart some actual reason behind it). All that needs to happen is that by the end of it all, Megatron flushes out Primals crew and picks them all off. Memory whiped, and we’re on to Beast Machines.

    It’s all awesome stuff, and from this fan Simon, you did a heck of a job with Ascending. The final scene with our late hero was quite sad and touching, as was the final moments of Prowl with Snarl. All I have to ask for in another sequel is that Wolfang somehow survives (pretty please?), B’boom returns to kick some tail, and Magmatron becomes one of the “good guys” to save the planet. Or at the very least, as many Cybertronians as he can.

    And as an aside, how is Tas’ Kid dead? He was torn in half, but wasn’t Silverbolt and especially Waspinator dismembered many times? At worst, he’d be in stasis lock (not that I particularly care to see him come back, just saying).

    Again, from me, I thought Ascending was great, and I really, truly hope to see more of the BW-verse in the future.

  23. Cakir says:

    >And just because the end of The Ascending kind of sets up Beast Machines, it doesn’t >necessarily mean we’re done with Beast Wars. All sorts of stuff could (and must) have >happened inbetween Meg arriving on Cybertron and Primal & crew getting over their >amnesia or whatever.

    Now this is the story I’ve been waiting for.

  24. Coptur says:

    Well there is endless time to use between BW and BM i’ve always said that.
    i myself have finished an idea/story set between this time ready for the tf mosaic, but i hit a wall when some one told me that the mosaic can only be one page but i think i can condense it … oh and i do need a artist any offers Andy Wildman perhaps lol !?!

    The story feature the Autorollers pitted against the non tv show Vehicons during and after the events of the Ascending, searching there true leader. i am a where Autocrusher is seen in issue 4 of the ascending but if you’ve seen the bw2nd you would know the auotrollers don’t get affected by angolmois seeing as they were in close contact with it, when they had to mine it for galvatron, his appearence in this scene it actually quite useful.

    oh simon what was the final death toll in ascending or won’t we find out until the next mini series!?

  25. Galmorzu says:

    I’m interested in a final, official death toll as well.

    Who’s dead-dead, and who’s dead but recoverable.

  26. MatthewHessey says:

    Just got (and read) the issue, almost wish I hadn’t so that I could keep saying to myself “He didn’t die, you never read his death, he’s not dead!” But seriously, it was another good issue, it was especially nice to have Mr Guidi doing the drawing, although Don will be missed, I felt Guido did a really good job with the issue. Especially the last panel of the ‘Earth’ crew. Optimus Minor in particular. So, here’s hoping for another BW series soon.

    By the way, Simon, have things quitened down for you yet? Or do I need to wait a while longer?

  27. Dawfydd says:

    Simon, just got issues 3 & 4 through: Abso-fragging fantastic! Given the ending, I look forward to seeing where the next BW series goes.
    It’s sad to hear about Don leaving, but he truely went above and beyond in the amount of work he put into the various TF titles over the years. Hope he enjoys success in his future endevours. Guido’s fill in work was aces though. Between this and EJ needing time off of Devastation, I’ve been impressed by the ability of IDW’s TF artists to step up and fill in…

  28. Jazzblack says:

    Like a drug that last issue of the ascending, like a drug, I need more….

    Good work Mr Furman.

  29. HEDGESMFG says:

    Mr. Furman,

    Your work has been a keystone to what’s made the transformers mythos so interesting to me for years. While I suppose I felt the limitations of a 4 issue miniseries may have hurt the epic potential of the story a little… your work and continuity patching here is still ‘greatly’ appreciated. On one hand… if this is it and we never get another mini-series between this and the start of Beast Machines… so be it. You’ve filled in the gap and it’s pretty clear what follows next…

    On the other hand, I would pay good money to see it happen and the ensuing conflict. Megatron’s tyrannical rise just begs for character development and while we do know the ending, that wouldn’t make the series any less interesting to read. Heck, an appearance and perhaps proper use of someone like Cryotek (similar to how you adapted the other 3H characters) would make it even better… as ‘he’s’ a Predacon who should get some official recognition. Plus, heck, everyone else that survived in Razorbeast’s camp is still on earth! Maybe now we can know how Waspinator actually made it back to Cybertron!

    Please keep this in mind as you pursue future story ideas!

  30. Cerebros says:

    Mr. Simon Furman,

    I must say, I LOVE the Beast Wars books! My one concern, as shared by others, is that Beast Machines is part of this continuity. I’m concerned that this seems to be the case as that is such a highly controversial show and that the premise is very harsh for the main characters who were captured. I’ll also be happy if The Ascending is the last series we get for the fill-the-gap details between this and Beast Machines. If it’s not the last series, I hope there are at least five to six more stories before Beast Machines. I do have two questions for you regarding the timeline, though.

    1. If The Maximal Elders are the original G1 guys, how did they survive to be around in BW?
    The BW show follows events from the G1 show and Ironhide and Prowl’s bodies perished when the mosoleum went into the sun in Dark Awakening. Also, it looked like Silverbolt was critically wounded by Blast Off in Rebirth 3. The only thing I can think of is that Prime went to Vector Sigma to revive them in new bodies. Since Unicron was destroyed in the Movie, this places their deaths in the same timeline, and Unicron’s back during the Ascending.

    2. Since it seems highly likely that it’s part of continuity, will Beast Machines be EXACTLY the same as the show, or will it differ? Isn’t it possible that some of the other characters escaped Megs’ attack? I mean the Autobot shuttle was SHOT DOWN by Megatron’s forces before they crashed after he arrived during The Ascending. Since it was shot down, I don’t see how it would make sense if Primal and his crew were hanging out with the BW2 and Neo characters.

    I’m ecstatic that we’ve finally got BW comics!


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