At Botcon this year, I walked into the Dealer room right as it opened and, at the very first table I hit, found one of my favourite G1 toys, Doubledealer, for a very good price. Though he was positively caked in dust and a good portion of his stickers were scratched and peeled, he was only missing his chest plate. He still had both of his Powermaster partners, and they were in greate shape.
I swooped him up, brought him home, and ordered some Reprolabels for him. This weekend I finally got a chance to strip off his old stickers, clean him up, and apply his shiny new repro stickers.
This was my first encounter with Reprolabels and I can not possibly praise them enough. Something you can’t really see from the photos is the glossy, textured surface of the stickers themselves. It really brings a lot to the figure.
As soon as I had him shiny and newly stickered I presented him to my wife, who, of course, has never seen nor heard of Doubledealer. Viewing the toy’s shoulder symbols, “He’s an Autobot!”, she proudly exclaimed.
I then make a change in Powermaster partner and a quick transformation: “Wait! Now he’s a Decepticon. …That’s tricky.”
Tricky indeed. I always liked Doubledealer. The idea that he and his two Powermaster partners had this tremendous scam going on made for some great fiction. It’s a great trick but, unless you play it with impeccable forethought, a trick that only works once. He didn’t show up in the Marvel US comics, but the Marvel UK comics spotlighted him in issue 228, “(Double) Deal of the Century!”
His Dreamwave “More Than Meets The Eye” entry actually takes the scam to a complex new level by stating that only Doubledealer himself knows of his duplicitous nature. In their version, Skar is a devout Decepticon, Knok is a dedicated Autobot, and neither knows of the other’s existence or of Doubledealer’s other robot mode. That would definitely make for some intriguing plotlines, but sadly his bio is the only place Doubledealer made an appearance in the Dreamwave continuity. This leaves the implications of this web of deceit to our imaginations.
Doubledealer’s weakest fiction use is his most recent. In the IDW continuity Doubledealer isn’t a Powermaster, has only one robot mode, and is passed off as a traitor to the Autobots and a mere plot device. He is then — big surprise! — apparently killed off when his Decepticon allegiance is discovered. *sigh* Despite all indications to the contrary, I want to hold out hope that this means he will eventually return in his G1 form. Wouldn’t that be grand?
Come on, IDW, prove me wrong. I dare you.