Simon Furman

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Simon Furman
Simon Furman at NordCon 2010.jpg
Born Simon Christopher Francis Furman
Nationality British
Area(s) Writer, Editor
Pseudonym(s) Chris Francis
Notable works
Transformers, Death's Head
For the chess player, see Semyon Furman.

Simon Christopher Francis Furman is a comic book writer, particularly associated with of a number of notable Transformers comics for Marvel UK, Marvel US, Dreamwave, and most recently, IDW. He also wrote the final episode of the Beast Wars: Transformers cartoon, the Transformers Ultimate Fan Guide, and several convention exclusive comics and novellas.

His first published work appeared in 1984 in Fleetway's weekly comic, Scream! issue 3, writing the opening episode of "Terror of the Cats". He currently writes Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Transformers for Titan Magazines in the UK and the US Transformers comic line published by IDW.

He has also used the pseudonym Chris Francis on occasion, most notable when editing Marvel UK's Transformers to keep his role separate from writing some of the stories.

Career[edit]

Furman invented an origin story for the Transformers that involved an ancient struggle between the colossal godlike creator, Primus, and his counterpart, the colossal godlike destroyer, Unicron. The latter was borrowed from the Transformers movie, where he appeared with no given backstory (a conflicting origin for Unicron later came in the third season of the original Transformers cartoon series). According to Furman's origin story, The Transformers were a creation of Primus as a warrior race who were to be the last line of defence against Unicron. This origin differs from the third season of the cartoon series, where the Transformers were originally created to be robot servants of the alien Quintessons, who often sold them to other races.

Aside from the creation myth, mythological underpinnings can be found in several of his stories such as the Matrix Quest storyline, where the Autobots and Decepticons search for the Creation Matrix, a powerful object constructed by Primus.

Furman's Transformers: Generation 2 plot-line in 1993 introduced the characters Jhiaxus and Liege Maximo, one of the first Transformers. Liege Maximo had killed the first Prime to steal the Matrix and claimed that the Decepticons descended from him. Since Transformers Generation 2 was cancelled after 12 issues, the Liege Maximo storyline was concluded in the convention exclusive novella Alignment.

Over ten years later, Furman was brought in by the now-defunct independent comics publisher Dreamwave to write some of its Transformers comics, including "The War Within", a six issue prequel set on Cybertron before the Autobots and Decepticons took their battle to Earth. It spawned two sequels – "TWW: The Dark Ages" and "TWW: The Age Of Wrath" (uncompleted). His work on the Armada and Energon titles were also received better than the anime series from which they were based on. Furman was to have continued on with Dreamwave, but its contentious closure resulted in the premature end of the Energon and The War Within titles.

Furman's convention exclusive novella/comic serial, The Omega Point, includes an apocalyptic End of Days scenario for the Transformers, and a quest by one of the heroes to ask for help in the land of the dead.

Simon Furman still collaborates with regular Marvel UK Transformers artist, Andrew Wildman, as WildFur Productions.[1] Their most recent collaboration was on the Macromedia Flash online, interactive comic The Engine: Industrial Strength, which they produced with UK New Media expert Adam Jennings.

Away from Transformers, Furman wrote a Doctor Who audio adventure for Big Finish. The Axis of Insanity features the Fifth Doctor, and was published in 2004. He also contributed a number of stories starring Judge Dredd to the DC title Judge Dredd: Lawman of the Future, as well as one-off stories to Dredd's home title 2000 AD.

Furman is currently writing a new continuity of "Generation 1" Transformers comic books for IDW Publishing. Furman likes to tell his stories realistically with maps helping out his locations.[2] Furman often focuses his stories on responsibility.[3] He also wrote a Maximum Dinobots mini-series in 2008.[4]

Furman is also widely known as the co-creator and chief writer of Death's Head. Originally created as a "throwaway character" for use in the UK Transformers series,[5] the character instead received his own series of stories in various comics, becoming a staple of Marvel UK comics in the 1980s and early 1990s.

Furman's other work at Marvel Comics includes a 2-year run on original Alpha Flight comic book series (where he served as the final writer on the series), a concurrent Northstar mini-series featuring the Alpha Flight team member, a run on Marvel's RoboCop ongoing series in 1991, and the 2006 Annihilation: Ronan mini-series which tied into the Annihilation crossover.[6] In 2006, he returned to writing Death's Head, after a Marvel.com poll contest helped revive the character (now branded Death's Head 3.0) and was thus given a 5-issue storyarc in the Amazing Fantasy anthology series.[7]

In June 2007, he began writing Terminator 2: Infinity, based on Dynamite Entertainment's Terminator 2 license; he produced a sequel, Terminator: Revolution.[8] In the United Kingdom, he did original strips for the first two volumes of Titan Magazines' Transformers Comic UK title, as well as contributing to the strips for Titan's Torchwood magazine.

On 9 April 2011 Furman was one of 62 comics creators who appeared at the IGN stage at the Kapow! convention in London to set two Guinness World Records, the Fastest Production of a Comic Book, and Most Contributors to a Comic Book. With Guinness officials on hand to monitor their progress, writer Mark Millar began work at 9am scripting a 20-page black and white Superior comic book, with Furman and the other artists appearing on stage throughout the day to work on the pencils, inks, and lettering, including Dave Gibbons, Frank Quitely, John Romita Jr., Jock,[9] Doug Braithwaite, Ian Churchill, Olivier Coipel, Duncan Fegredo, David Lafuente, John McCrea, Sean Phillips and Liam Sharp,[10] who all drew a panel each, with regular Superior artist Leinil Yu creating the book's front cover. The book was completed in 11 hours, 19 minutes, and 38 seconds, and was published through Icon on 23 November 2011, with all royalties being donated to Yorkhill Children's Foundation.[9]

Bibliography[edit]

Comics work includes:

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ "wildfur productions". Wildfur.net. Retrieved 26 December 2010. 
  2. ^ "Simon Furman creating history Q&A". TFormers.com. Retrieved 14 October 2006. 
  3. ^ Singh, Arune (19 October 2006). "Simon Furman keeps rollin out with "Transformers" at IDW". Comic Book Resources. Retrieved 16 February 2007. 
  4. ^ Furman Talks “Maximum Dinobots”, Comic Book Resources, 9 December 2008
  5. ^ Furman, Simon (2006). "Freelance Peacekeeping Agent Open For Business (or how Death's Head came to be)", Death's Head Volume 1, Panini Publishing, ISBN 1-905239-34-3
  6. ^ Furman on Ronan The Accuser, Newsarama, 17 February 2006
  7. ^ Pniccia on Death's Head 3.0 & Amfan Things to Come, Newsarama, 21 November 2006
  8. ^ "Furman on Making Dynamite's Terminator Revolutionary". Comic Book Resources. 20 October 2008
  9. ^ a b "Kapow! '11: Comic History Rewritten On The IGN Stage". IGN. 14 April 2011
  10. ^ "Guinness World Records at Kapow! Comic Con". Guinness World Records. 9 April 2011

Bibliography[edit]

External links[edit]