Science Fiction website Suvudu has posted an interview with Alex Irvine. Alex is the author of the just released Transformers Exiles novel. This a sequel to the first novel, Exodus, which is in continuity with War For Cybertron and Transformers Prime. Read on to learn more about Alex and how he approached fan favorite characters like Optimus Prime and Megatron.
Click the title above to read the full interview and then share your thoughts on the 2005 Boards. Shawn Speakman: Hi Alex! You’ve written two tie-in novels for Transformers — EXODUS and EXILES. How did you get the chance to work on one of the most recognized franchises on the planet?
Alex Irvine: Well, that was thanks to Tricia Pasternak. I’d worked with her on an Iron Man novel and (memory fails) a couple of other things. When the Transformers project rolled around she asked me if I was interested…and of course I was. Then I had a bunch of conversations with Michael Kelly and the rest of the cool cats at Hasbro, and off we went.
SS: Where do these books fit in with the chronology of the movies and how much liberty were you given since they were prequels?
AI: I had a lot of liberty within the broader parameters of Hasbro continuity. In Exodus, my mandate was essentially to tell the history of the civil war and tie it to the portions of the story presented in the War for Cybertron video game. Transmedia! But within that framework, I could do anything. I wanted Optimus to believe what Megatron was preaching initially, so that when Megatron betrays his own principles it’s a real shock to Optimus, and leaves a scar that never quite heals. Exiles continues that story and also tees up some things that you might see in the coming season (or seasons?) of Transformers: Prime.
(By the way, speaking of Megatron: for those Suvududes of either sex who do not follow the NFL, the Detroit Lions receiver Calvin Johnson is nicknamed Megatron.)
SS: What kinds of things will Transformers fans learn if they read EXILES?
AI: They will learn about lost Cybertronian colonies—including Velocitron and Junkion; some of the history of the Thirteen; and how Optimus deals with betrayal when he has to confront the fact that one of the Autobots is a spy for Megatron. Also there are cool fights. They might see a kind of bot that is very rarely seen, and they will certainly learn something interesting about the origin of Junkion. And did I mention the…? Oh. I can’t mention those.
SS: Got a favorite Transformer? And I have to know, do you own him in toy form?
AI: Starscream! And yes, although my son Ian took him apart a while back and we never did find all the pieces. So he has transformed into something else.
SS: An age-old question: Can Optimus and Megatron ever settle their differences and become friends again?
AI: I envision the two of them on the porch of the Home for Aged Star-Faring Cybertronians in Iacon, sipping Maccadam’s and…by which I mean no. I think that Megatron would never let it happen. He’s too resentful about Optimus becoming the standard-bearer for the movement Megatron created, and he’s also never going to get over Optimus being named Prime.
SS: You are always busy with something. What are you currently working on and when will we be able to see it?
I’m putting the finishing touches on my Star Wars novel right now. It’s due to come out at the end of next year. I would tell you the title, but I’m still fiddling with different ideas. I wrote the novelization of the Tintin movie that’s coming out this Christmas; the book is out November 1. That was a great excuse to dig back into Tintin comics. I’m trying to teach the baby to say “Blistering barnacles!”
Also I am working on a couple of different game development projects, one of which will go live in January. And I’ve got three novels on the boil. I’m hoping to finish one of them by spring, but I don’t know which one.
SS: Thanks Alex!
AI: Thanks Suvudu