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TFW2005 Interviews Mairghread Scott

Posted on 03-22-2013 at 02:31 AM by ORIO under Site Updates
Mairghread-Scott-Pic
We recently had the opportunity to speak to writer Mairghread Scott. Mairghread is not only a scribe for episodes of the Transformers Prime TV series, but she recently co-wrote IDW Publishing's Rage Of The Dinobots mini-series and their upcoming Beast Hunters comic. Not to mention, she's the first woman to write a Transformers comic book. Mairghread was nice enough to answer our questions about working on Transformers Prime, writing the Transformer comic books, and touches upon the villain Ser-ket.

The Beast Hunters comic will be on shelves May 22nd, 2013.

Many thanks to TFW staff for help with the interview and Mairghread for taking the time out to chat with us! You can check out the full Beast Hunters comic book press release HERE. Click the title bar to read the full interview!

1. Hi Mairghread! First off, thanks so much for taking the time to talk with us here at TFW2005.com. Can you tell our members a little bit about yourself and how you landed the gig of working with the Transformers?

Sure, Iím a freelance animation writer and my day job is working for production on Transformers Prime the TV Show. Itís where I got my first script and it has been my home base ever since. As far as the comic is concerned, Mike Johnson invited me to join him on Rage of the Dinobots. Heís a fantastic writer who worked with us on Prime before and knew how badly I wanted to get into comics. Since he had the comic book chops and I was already immersed in the Aligned continuity we were a natural pairing to work on Rage. After thatÖ well we made no secret about wanting to continue the stories we were telling and, thankfully, our editors at IDW and the good folks at Hasbro agreed to let us keep going.

2. What do you do when you're not writing stories about giant robots punching eachother? Are there elements of your real life that you draw influence upon for your stories?

Mostly I read comics and cross-stitch, but I am always trying to do new crazy things that I think might be useful later on (much to the chagrin of my husband, who insists Iím going to get myself killed). Iíve done everything from flying trapeze to pole dancing, kung fu to parkour and itís all helped with my work. Writing the Ser-ket/Grimlock fight in issue 3 of Rage involved a lot of thinking back to my armored sword fighting lessons with the SCA (theyíre medieval reenactors). I wanted Ser-ket to be a two-weapon fighter, but in real life they rarely beat sword and shield fighters like Grimlock, so I tweaked her weapons to be a sword and electric scourge instead of two swords. It made it a lot more believable that she would get Grimlock to drop his guard and giving her that goal in battle made the fight a lot more interesting than just having them randomly hack at each other.

3. You're the first woman to write a Transformers comic. How does that make you feel and what do you think you bring differently to the table of other comic book writers?

Well, you definitely feel like there are more eyes on you, but Iíve got a really great writing partner in Mike Johnson and thatís reassuring. The only thing I think I do deliberately as a female writer that might be different is to include women in my stories in a very Ďnormalí way. Female comic book readers (i.e. me when I read comics) are looking for female characters to be there, be well written and not be treated like a big deal. In a lot of ways Transformers is the perfect brand for that. Female Transformers characters donít dress provocatively, they arenít just love interests and no one questions if theyíre fit to lead/defeat because of their gender. Ser-ket lost because she was a villain. Arcee is on Team Prime because earned her spot. End of story. The more I can do to build on that for all comic fans, the better.

4. What can you tell us about the upcoming Beast Hunters comic from IDW Publishing?

The new comic features the same great Dinobots we had in Rage, but weíve jumped forward in time and the Dinobotsí mission to protect those still left on Cybertron has turned them into accidental leaders for the largest Autobot settlement still on the planet. The only problem is that being great commando fighters and being great civic leaders are two very different things. Weíre hoping to expand the Prime universe and explore that tension as the Dinobots protect their followers from threats both external and internal. Grimlockís always claimed that he could do a better job than Optimus and Mike and I are determined to test that theory.

5. On top of writing the upcoming Transformers Beast Hunters comic, you've also wrote a few of the television episodes of Transformers Prime including "Hurt", "Orion Pax part 2" and more. How does writing the cartoon differ from writing a comic book?

Itís a very different set of muscles. We pack a lot of story into an episode of the TV Show, but you have to trim and tighten even more in the comic. At the same time, you can go a lot deeper into the mindset of your characters. Youíd never tolerate that much voice over in a TV show, but in a comic, with so few images to communicate emotions, it because a crucial window into our characterís thinking.

6. Is the Beast Hunters comic meant to tie in directly with the show or does it exist on it's own yet in the same continuity? For example, does it take place before/during, or after the show?

Beast Hunters, the comic, takes place during the same time frame as the show, but in a very different locale. Since the show is so tight-knit we thought it best to build on our own cast of characters with the goal of bridging into the show rather than trying to insert another story line with the showís main cast. But when our two trains collide, itís going to be explosive.

7. Will you be writing anything for the Beast Hunters show this upcoming season? Or will you be mainly focused on the comic?

With our animation schedule, the writing for this season of the TV show ended quite a while ago, but I did write an episode this season. I do still write for animation, which is why Mikeís tag teaming with me is so invaluable. By switching off every couple of issues, weíve been able to focus on more projects while still giving the comic the consistency it deserves.

8. Beast Hunters is said to be the last season of Transformers Prime. Will you be continuing the story of Transformers Prime through the comic after the show has ended?

We very much hope to do that, but only time and the popularity of the books can really tell. I think we can all agree though, there is a lot of story still left in the Prime continuity. I just hope we get the chance to explore it.

9. Transformers Prime has a rich backstory that the cartoon sometimes only hints at. Will you be filling in any of the blanks, for example the history between Bulkhead and Breakdown?

While itís always interesting to explore the past of TF Prime, there are so many stories we want to tell in the present, it would be a shame to do too much retrospection. But, that said, weíre gearing our stories to be readable no matter how much TF lore you know, so when characters have history together, youíll bet weíll talk about it.

10. With Rage of the Dinobots you had four issues to tell the story, while Beast Hunters is an ongoing series. How does the writing process differ for an ongoing, and might we see more self-contained stories or short arcs?

Our goal is to write a series of short arcs (2 issues is our ideal), that build on each other without being too linked-in. Weíre definitely still making a comic thatís going in a specific direction, but we were thrilled that Rage brought in new Transformers fans and we want to keep TF Beast Hunters as a comic thatís both a great Transformers story and a great gateway for those new to the Transformers world. Our motto is that all you need to know about Transformers to read Beast Hunters is that it has robots who turn into things. There are a lot of great easter eggs for readers who know more, but thatís our goal.

11. How much freedom is Hasbro giving you with this series? Have you got carte blanche to use any characters you want, or have they advised that certain characters or plots are off limits as they have their own plans for them.

Other than being asked not to spoil any of the awesome plot twists in the TV show (which we totally agree with), weíve been given a pretty free hand. There are definitely characters and concepts that Hasbro has encouraged us to explore, but weíre much more likely to be given something to play with than to be told something is off-limits. Iím sure if we proposed something off the wall thereíd be an objection, but itís been a pretty smooth ride so far.

12. Rage of the Dinobots featured two new characters to the Transformers Prime universe. Ser-ket and Backbite. These two have more than a passing resemblance to two of the Beast Hunter predacon toys: Ripclaw and Skystalker, respectively. Were these two characters intended to be the toy characters initially? Or were you unable to use the names of them at the time?

It was definitely a conscious choice to model Ser-ket and Backbite after the toys you mentioned, but it didnít make sense for us to use the actual toy characters. Ser-ket and Backbite are related to Ripclaw and Skystalker, but we canít say how officially yet. Keep asking; one day all will be revealed.

13. The Beast Hunters toyline comes with its own prequel story told on the instruction sheets. Canon-wise, does your Beast Hunters comic book series tie into it or is yours a unique prequel series of its own?

n/a Itís a good question, but I donít have a good answer for it that doesnít get too spoilery. Sorry guys.

14. I'm a huge Dinobot fan. More specifically, Grimlock. I even have a tattoo of him. Which of the Dinobots are your favorite? And which one is the most fun to write?

You have to post that Grimlock tattoo. Thatís something Iíve got to see. Iím a huge Slug fan. Heís so not a morning person, a people person or a particularly nice person but he is my favorite character - probably for those reasons. Itís always fun to write a curmudgeon.

15. Will you be attending Botcon this year?

You know it. Right now Iím just trying to decide if Iíll cosplay or not. Of course, with my schedule, making an Arcee costume is a bit of a pipe dream, but hope springs eternal.

16. Thanks for your time Mairghread! We appreciate you reaching out to the fandom like this!

No problem. Iím also available on Twitter at @MairghreadScott and tumblr at www.tumblr.com/blog/mscottwrites I hope we make it onto peopleís pre-order list and fans can feel free to drop me a line if thereís anything else they want to know.
Views: 3,158
Josh
First woman to WRITE a TF comic anyway

Respect to joana and priscilla!
[Wing_Saber-X]
She seems like a fun kinda gal.
ORIO
Quote:
Originally Posted by Josh View Post
First woman to WRITE a TF comic anyway

Respect to joana and priscilla!
You're absolutely right. Fixed that. That's wasn't what I meant to write lol
Josh
Quote:
Originally Posted by ORIO View Post
You're absolutely right. Fixed that. That's wasn't what I meant to write lol
Suuuuuuuure! xD
Alooulla
Im just very happy to see female transformers appearing in comics again..I missed them in FoC itself.
Dormamu
I have that same sweater. I think I'm going to need to spend less on masterpieces, and more on wardrobe pieces.
shroobmaster
Well she sure has the enthusiasm for the project, but I seriously hope she learned from Rage of the Dinobots because I found everything but the last issue quite a drag. And getting better on the last issue is a positive sign but doesn't guarantee anything.
Sumner Sturgeon
Quote:
Originally Posted by shroobmaster View Post
Well she sure has the enthusiasm for the project, but I seriously hope she learned from Rage of the Dinobots because I found everything but the last issue quite a drag. And getting better on the last issue is a positive sign but doesn't guarantee anything.
I think it had a lot to do with the fact that she was confined to just those 4 issues story-wise, and she even points that out in previous interviews regarding the Beast Hunters ongoing. The improvement of issue 4, along with her enthusiasm and the fact that she'll have less time constraints makes me confident that her work for the new comic will be pretty good, if not great.
madhatprime
I have to say, I would love to have a conversation with this person. She seems interesting
This is amazing to me:
Quote:
I’ve done everything from flying trapeze to pole dancing, kung fu to parkour and it’s all helped with my work. Writing the Ser-ket/Grimlock fight in issue 3 of Rage involved a lot of thinking back to my armored sword fighting lessons with the SCA (they’re medieval reenactors)
jettyfire
Yeah you go girl. Awesome love the episode she wrote Stronger and Faster
Stygian360
I can't be 100% certain, but it seemed like she hinted at the idea that Dinobots may "collide" with the toon Beast Hunters show. Granted, this season is shorter than the average so there may not be time to do so, but perhaps they'll get shoehorned in, in an 'everything and the kitchen sink' last hoorah kind of way. Please by the holiest of holy Primus!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by jettyfire View Post
Yeah you go girl. Awesome love the episode she wrote Stronger and Faster
I don't think that was her. I think that was another female writer.
MegaHavok
God you put a woman in the equation and everybody becomes 12 again...
I met Mrs. Scott AND HER HUSBAND once and they were both extremely nice people
Fairlady_Z
Great interview! All the Transformers comics have been awesome of late. I've been looking forward to the Rage of the Dinobots TPB in May, but now I'm even more excited. Being a female comic book reader, issues of women in comics and female characters have always been important to me, so I'm glad to see Mrs. Scott involved in the franchise and being part of an ongoing with Beast Hunters. I really liked how she talked about incorporating her own martial arts knowledge into the fight scenes. It's something I try to do with my own writing as well. Ser-Ket sounds like a character I'm really going to like. I also can't wait to see the Dinobots in a leadership position, I laughed out loud at the thought of Grimlock having to learn to be diplomatic. It also fits in with the theme of RID and MTMTE where characters who haven't been seen as leaders before are having to step up to the plate. I like that. It makes a welcome change from the status quo of Op and Megs. I would love to meet Mrs. Scott at a convention someday. And I hope the Beast Hunters comic gets to continue the Prime universe even after the final cartoon season ends.

Is Mrs. Scott's first name pronounced Mary or Margaret?
shroobmaster
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sumner Sturgeon View Post
I think it had a lot to do with the fact that she was confined to just those 4 issues story-wise, and she even points that out in previous interviews regarding the Beast Hunters ongoing. The improvement of issue 4, along with her enthusiasm and the fact that she'll have less time constraints makes me confident that her work for the new comic will be pretty good, if not great.
By all means I hope that you're right, I'm just saying it doesn't actualy guarantee anythign so I still hesitate a little to say I'm hyped for it.

I DO love Mairghread Scott and Mike Johson's Prime episodes, Out of the Past and Hurt are my favorite episodes of the entire thing. I really hope they do something sweet with Beast Hunters comic.
Sumner Sturgeon
Quote:
Originally Posted by shroobmaster View Post
By all means I hope that you're right, I'm just saying it doesn't actualy guarantee anythign so I still hesitate a little to say I'm hyped for it.

I DO love Mairghread Scott and Mike Johson's Prime episodes, Out of the Past and Hurt are my favorite episodes of the entire thing. I really hope they do something sweet with Beast Hunters comic.
Of course-- I'm cautious in my optimism as well, it just makes good sense to be. Nevertheless, I'm still excited for what might be; I can't help myself, haha.

And yes, same here. For that same reason, I'm also looking forward to Mairghread's episode of Beast Hunters later this season.
Smasher
Good interview, Orio.

I haven't read the Rage of the Dinobots yet as I get everything in TPB form now.
But so far RID and MTMTE are incredibly good so I'm really looking forward to getting it.
ORIO
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smasher View Post
Good interview, Orio.
Thanks, I can't take all the credit. Shin, NIBM and Sol pitched in with questions for her too.

edit: that's also the best user title on TFW.
moreprimeland
One of the BEST TFP interviews ever...excited to see..and read...the spoilers she's hinted about for the future of both the TV series and the comics. Mine's on preorder for sure.
Autovolt 127
She sounds like a fun lady to hang around with.
Stygimoloch
Haven't read any RotD yet, so I don't know how it turned out, but this premise has me intrigued... kind like RiD, but set in the Prime-verse. I'll buy it when it comes out, here's hoping its good!

Great interview BTW, and it's interesting she mentions when the comic and TV worlds combine... possible hint? Maybe.
kaijuguy19
She does sound like a pretty fun person to meet with. Maybe we may see the Dinobots in TFP soon if what she said about the comic and show eventually coming together is true.
Captain
both comic and the episodes she wrote were solid. I liked them a lot and will keep buying TF: Prime. Creative mind and I'm happy she is writing comics I enjoy.
TrueNomadSkies
Quote:
Originally Posted by MegaHavok View Post
God you put a woman in the equation and everybody becomes 12 again...
I met Mrs. Scott AND HER HUSBAND once and they were both extremely nice people
Hhah nice try, but we're pretty much still all manchildren here.

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