Thursday, July 3, 2014

TF Spotlight: Trailcutter in "The Reluctant Specialist!"

07.03.2014 – Transformers Spotlight takes a closer look on Trailbreaker err… Trailcutter. The energon guzzling fuel inefficient Autobot from the Generation One. You know that Autobot that Spike and Sparkplug hangout during the second part of ‘More Than Meets The Eye’ story arc in the original series?

Yup that black Toyota Hi-Lux 4x4 with a camper? For those who did not recall this Autobot shame on you. But for those looking forward to hear about the character aside from being just ‘I want to have him in my collection’ Trailcutter is one interesting Autobot aside from having that forcefield generator.

He’s actually one of the original Autobots who went with Optimus Prime on a space mission that ended in a tragedy 4 million years or so. In the comic book universe published by IDW Publishing this Autobot now known as Trailcutter is more than everyone wants to have to bolster their Modern G1 collection.

In Transformers Spotlight you get to see more about Trailcutter than meets this eye. The story so far is connected to the IDW Publishing regular series ‘Transformers: More Than Meets The Eye’ and it continues the adventure of the startship Lost Light who left planet Cyberton in search of the legendary Transformers known as the ‘Knights of Cybertron.’

Trailcutter was part of the crew who joined his fellow Autobots in this journey (the story takes place between ‘Transformers: More Than Meets The Eye’ issue #5 and #6).

In this Spotlight Trailcutter helps Chromedome, Brainstorm, and Highbrow with the repairs of the ship after hitting an asteroid. Rodimus Prime gives the commendation for the three while Trailcutter drowns himself in disappointment at Swerve’s bar. Whirl comes in and finds out what’s bothering him and tries to get Rodimus’ attention for not being awarded with a ‘Rodimus Star’ (that has an image of the Captain of the Lost Light). It’s a tongue n’ cheek story from James Roberts trying to explain why he’s no longer ‘Trailbreaker’ anymore but calls himself ‘Trailcutter’ because it sounded cool as Whirl would obliged.

This gives a back story and explanation to the name change (in reality the name is not available to claim a trademark) and it works at how that came about. At the same time the humor was fun as the artwork done by Matt Frank with those quirky facial expressions. In those days of Simon Furman and Andre Wildman you don’t see this kind of situations like watching a sitcom in space, which featured transforming robots as the characters.

Since you’re reading it right that they are traveling in space their vehicle mode are based from planet Cybertron thus explains why Trailcutter’s form is different from the toy that was recently released by Hasbro in the Deluxe Class assortment. But the character featured IS Trailcutter in his glorious robot form, but differently represented in IDW comic books as per his previous Marvel and Dreamwave published iteration.

James Roberts certainly extract the characters personality in each panel and Whirl is quite the impressive one. Not that the Decepticon known as Shockwave won’t even have that kind of humor. Of course this is Trailcutter’s shining moment for taking out Lockdown and a bunch of Deluxe Insecticons who nearly stole the artifact that would lead them to the ‘Knights of Cybertron.’ This shows Trailcutter is not just an Autobot with a gimmick namely a ‘forcefield’ and ‘magnawheels’, but a cheerful with a lot of creativity to deal such adversity like playing mind games with a very dangerous bounty hunter.

Overall it was a fun story that featured one of the original characters from the classic Transformers cartoon. James Roberts expands Trailbreaker to Trailcutter and at the same time keeping the character in the rear view mirror celebrating the TRANSFORMERS brand’s ‘Thrilling 30.’

This Transformers Spotlight issue was released in 2013, and was also packaged in the Deluxe Class Trailcutter figure from Hasbro with a cropped version of the RI (Retailer Incentive) cover for the Generations toy line.

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