COUNTDOWN: 10 things to know about Emirate Xaaron

In case you haven’t seen it yet, a rather exciting new toy reveal has just dropped!

Yes, we have a Generations Comic Edition 2-pack of Emirate Xaaron and Flame on the way, representing both characters who originated in the pages of the Marvel UK book in the 1980s! It’s especially noteworthy because neither of them has ever had proper toys before, which is very surprising in Xaaron’s case, considering he’s not exactly a minor presence during the series, either.

So, to celebrate, let’s look at 10 facts about Emirate Xaaron that everyone needs to know!

#10: He’s the leader of the Autobot resistance

The Transformers (Marvel UK) 1985 Annual, art credit: John Stokes

We first meet Emirate Xaaron during the 1985 Marvel annual in a story named And There Shall Come… A Leader set millions of years ago. Here, he is a member of the Council of Autobot Elders, engaged in a spirited debate about the ongoing assault by the Decepticons. Xaaron is the one who convinces his comrades to entrust control of their armies to a single warrior, that being Optimus Prime, thus paving the way for the Autobots to rise up. However, whether ‘Emirate’ is a council title or part of his name is unclear. After Optimus and many others are lost, the rest of the council votes to surrender to the Decepticons. Xaaron disagrees and manages to survive the ordeal, becoming the leader of an underground Autobot resistance movement despite countless years of Decepticon oppression. Though he is not a warrior, his skills are more down to his way with people than anything.

#9: He set up the Wreckers

The Transformers (Marvel UK), art credit: Ron Smith / John Burns

It was Xaaron who first created the fan-favourite elite Autobot commando team of the Wreckers, enlisting Impactor and his comrades to assassinate the Decepticon tyrant known as Trannis in the text story Cybertron: The Middle Years! The Wreckers would later play a pivotal role in the mission known as Operation: Volcano during the celebrated UK epic Target: 2006, and Xaaron would continue to oversee their operations for some time after.

#8: He’s a wily old buzzard

The Transformers (Marvel UK), art credit: Ron Smith / John Burns

Though adept at diplomacy and passionately respected by his troops, Xaaron’s approach is far from subtle. For one thing, he regularly rubs his friend and colleague Impactor the wrong way! This heavy-handed nature led to the Wreckers’ leader regularly describing Xaaron as a “wily old buzzard,” which were his last words to his commander before he died.

#7: His appearance is based on Megatron

Despite never having had a toy to his name (until now!) Xaaron’s design is loosely based on the appearance of the G1 Megatron figure and box art, with notable similarities between their head shapes and details and even the blocky shape of the Autobot’s chest lining up surprisingly closely. For this reason, it’s long been speculated that a Megatron toy of some kind could make a suitable base for a Xaaron release, with the irony being that his pack-in opponent Flame ended up as the one who received this treatment instead!

#6: His mouth is based on Iron Man

There’s one other noteworthy aspect of Xaaron’s appearance, however, and that is his mouth. It has a pair of distinctive ‘bars’ running between the top and bottom, which is seemingly a nod to the classic appearance of Iron Man on the page. It’s always been unclear just how this works, considering Xaaron can seemingly move his mouth in the traditional manner, but hey, it’s comics.

#5: He has two colour schemes

The Transformers (Marvel US) #61, art credit: Geoff Senior / Nell Yomtov

Despite being initially created for the expanded UK run of the comic, Xaaron was a rare instance of Simon Furman carrying a character over to his work on the US book once he assumed the writing duties there. Xaaron’s first US appearance was #60, and strangely enough, he now featured a very different all-gold colour scheme instead of the gold and silver mix UK fans were accustomed to. This was never explained in the story.

#4: We never saw Xaaron’s alternate mode in the comics

The Transformers (Marvel UK) #169, art credit: Robin Smith

One thing Xaaron is also famous for is never transforming. That doesn’t mean he’s without an alternate form, mind; it’s seemingly just been so long since he has transformed that he’s worried the process of doing it might kill him! There was speculation on the UK comic’s letters page for years about what Xaaron turned into (with one-time host Dreadwind even suggesting it was“somethin’ really wimpy – like a toaster”). Still, we did get an answer of sorts during the 2-part storyline Meltdown!, on which the new toy’s appearance is based. In that, Xaaron faces off against Flame’s tank form and decides he might need to turn into his ‘vehicular combat mode’, although he never fully makes it through the process. At least now we have one idea of what it looks like!

#3: He’s also appeared in IDW

The Transformers (IDW) #22, art credit: Alex Milne / Joana Lafuente

Though Xaaron will always be synonymous with the Marvel comics, he has also cropped up in other media, including both continuities of the IDW series. Here he was originally an Autobot legal advisor, though ends up on various adventures throughout the story, including being part of the Lost Light crew during More Than The Eye.

#2: He was taken over by Primus

The Transformers (Marvel) #73, art credit: Andrew Wildman / Stephen Baskerville

Towards the end of the initial Marvel run, Unicron is heading for Cybertron. Galvatron chases down Xaaron and eventually corners him, confessing to the Autobot that he secretly wants his help with defeating his master, leading Xaaron to recall an old myth of how the Transformers might prevail over the Chaos Bringer by uniting as one race. Galvatron coerces Xaaron into attempting to awaken Primus, their creator, who resides at the centre of Cybertron. When our hero is unexpectedly successful, Primus takes control of Xaaron’s body to have a physical form to communicate with his ‘children’.

#1: He was killed by Unicron

The Transformers (Marvel) #75, art credit: Geoff Senior / Nell Yomtov

Sadly, Xaaron, still inhabited by Primus, is killed in the resulting battle with Unicron after the planet-eater quickly dispatches his age-old nemesis! It means that the last time we truly see Xaaron alive is when he’s praying to Primus for assistance. Still, one could argue he ultimately gave his life for the good of Cybertron, helping to stave off the threat of Unicron by awakening their creator in the first place. Xaaron was always a hero since the beginning of the war and died as such.

So that’s our list!

TTFN

About Sixo

Transformers collector from the UK, collecting vintage G1/G2, CR/RID, UT & Masterpiece/3P. Find me at twitter.com/SixoTF or on YouTube at youtube.com/SixoTF

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