Welcome one and all to a series of threads intended for serious, intelligent discussion about various "big idea" topics in the Transformers franchise and fandom. Please note, things might get pretty heavy handed, so if you're not really in the mood for that, come back later, we understand. Tonight's topic comes from the fiction. Death is not something you would expect as a major theme in a property based off a toy-line, but ever since the 1986 animated movie, characters in Transformers are killed off on a seemingly daily basis. Recent major examples include: -Jazz died in the first live action movie, Optimus in the second. -Starscream and Blurr kicked the bucket (for good it looks like) in season 3 of Animated. -Ironhide was killed off in issue one of IDW's new ongoing comic series. -Others that I'm sure people will remind me of in the topic. So the question we are posing here is: is it too much? Does having so many deaths in the fiction diminish the impact of them? What kind of message does character death en-masse (IE: '86 movie) send to young fans? Should Hasbro back off on this for a while? Do these deaths seem more like cheap ploys to tug at the heartstrings and excuses to not have characters around for a while than actual important parts of the story? Some things to keep in mind while discussing: -While primarily aimed at kids, Transformers does have a war setting, and in all war, casualties will happen. Thus, we are not looking at the deaths of background characters and grunts, only main characters. -While Beast Wars had quite a few deaths, they were-for the most part-handled in a mature way. To put it short, each death was important. -Death for Transformers has always been ambiguous. Characters do not always stay dead, and even when they do, their consciences seem to be able to carry on. This might be an aspect of the fiction which makes death as a whole less impactive than in other series. There you have it, let the discussion begin!