01717: Transformers Non-Controversies

In a chat conversation with a friend today, I was reminded of the quirky debate that is summarized as FIRRIB. It's the argument about the "proper" colors for Decepticon minions Frenzy and Rumble. Due to an error in the US cartoon, their colors were accidentally switched, and thus the greater confusion. Even though the original toys and comic book stories featured Frenzy as red/black and Rumble as blue/purple, those who take the cartoon as the most important piece of canon out there consider the classic rule "Frenzy is Red, Rumble is Blue". And it's something that Transformers fans continue to argue about with the US cartoon often cited as the reason for their argument.

That leads to another weird Transformers fan term - GEEWUN, which is a mocking way to pronounce "G1" or Generation 1. This talks about extreme fans who only accept the G1 franchise as the "true" Transformers and thus reject all other versions of Transformers. It's a bit silly given how much the Transformers franchise has grown over the years with its different incarnations and one can't just limit themselves to one toyline. Sure I admit that I love the G1 era more than most, but that doesn't mean that I never gained a healthy respect for later shows like Beast Wars and Transformers Prime.

Beast Wars triggered another weird fan slur - "Trukk not Munky" - which is another insult for fans who reacted quite negatively to the cartoon when it first came out. The insistence that Optimus must always be a truck and not a gorilla (hence "munky") is just one of the many forms of rejection for the new. But the Transformers franchise is a living, breathing thing that continues to evolve over the years in an attempt to find new ways to expand to new audiences. But they still find ways to pay tribute to us longer term fans in one way or another.

Every fandom has more than its fare share of arguments. There will be those that try to limit the fandom to only certain subsets of the franchise that they love and they will argue significantly with those that disagree with their views. It's a nasty side effect of being brought into contact with the likes and interests of others thanks to the internet and one that we continually learn to live with.

As for me, I do love Generation 1 toys more than all and I do allow myself to be suckered into buying toys that tap into this side of the fandom (such as the Transformers Generations line of toys). But I'm not entirely closed to new toys of interest as long as I have the money for it.

Oh, and Frenzy is blue, Rumble is red. Seriously.