1984 – 1987
So many cartoons, so many memories, so many moments, so many inspirations that turned a tiny spark of creativity into the huge bon fire that has helped me choose the path that I am on today. How do I choose which one to kick off this blog?
Obviously, if you took a look at the title, you know exactly where I plan to start. But first here were some of the other contenders:
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Voltron, 90’s style X-Men (aka Jim Lee style), Bugs Bunny, Batman: The Animated Series, He-Man, Thundercats, Chuck Jones, Jack Kirby, Whilce Portacio, Super Mario Bros, and Who Framed Roger Rabbit?
This was just a small sampling. I have a good 10 pages of topics (movies, people, comics, tv, etc…) that I hope to write about in the future. But I chose to start off with the old school Transformers, the original, Generation 1 or G1 as some fans like to call it.
Looking back, the animation of this show was not the best, the stories were somewhat forgettable, the human characters were…bleh… Many critics called it a 30-minute commercial and you could really tell the toy came first. So why did I choose Transformers to begin this blog?
To answer that, I go to July of 2007. A group of over 50+ people (Mostly Seattle Southsiders, myself included) came together and filled up the entire back row and then some of Lincoln Square Cinemas, which is the most bourgeois theater I have been to, to watch the live action Transformers movie. This was all organized with an email chain that ran some 120+ messages.
Nostalgia and memories of the original Transformers was the foundation of how this group of people came together. This same fondness is what has kept the Transformers franchise alive and thriving, with what seems like hundreds of Transformers spin-offs, toys, comics, and reboots, some 25 years after the original cartoon. It’s one of the few animated series I know of that has crossed generations. To this day, I know plenty of aunties and uncles, and parents that call any large toy or cartoon robot a “transformer”.
It’s easy to admit now, but yes, Transformers: Generation 1 really was a weekly 30-minute commercial for toys. I know I had my share of them and there are plenty of folks who collect them. But for many, Transformers: Generation 1 is like a time machine that takes them back in time to their childhood. It doesn’t matter that the animation wasn’t tight, or stories weren’t well told, or characters weren’t all that deep. All that mattered was that they were entertained, they were happy, and they were inspired.
That’s why 50+ people, some who hardly knew anyone in the group, organized via email to fill up the entire back row and then some of Lincoln Square Cinemas.
That is the true Art of Transformers: Generation 1
That and cars and planes turning into robots was pretty tight as well =)