DJD Tarn: Who’s This Transformers Character and How It Inspired Hackle of Rolamaton

DJD Tarn from Transformers: More Than Meets The Eye (IDW comic series) is kind of a unique character, and as multi-faceted a villain as you might find.

DJD Tarn: official sketch by IDW artist Alex Milne

The official sketch by IDW artist Alex Milne

The main reason I became fond of him as I read the MTMTE issues was that he didn’t sound like a completely evil person — he sounded more like a person who suffered so much that he grew hungry for all he’s never had in life, and became unable to see anything else, including his own empathy (which is still there, although it doesn’t really work to stop him from wronging others).

DJD Tarn maskless in an interpretation by Luana Spinetti aka RoboMommy on DeviantART

My friend artist Luana’s interpretation of Tarn’s face (DeviantART)

In fact, Tarn’s the leader of a dangerous sect (the Decepticon Justice Division, or DJD), overzealous himself in his idealization of Megatron and his teachings, and borderline fanatic (or is that fanboy?) when it comes to all things Megatron and the Decepticon cause.

Over the time, I developed a real attachment to the character, and I cried when I read about his fate in MTMTE #55. Tarn is by far one of my favorite characters in the Transformers franchise, second only to Hot Rod/Rodimus Prime.

Why DJD Tarn Inspired Hackle

Hackle Glisser is a character with a critical role in the Rolamaton storyline, because (MILD SPOILER) he was the killer of a certain Robocitan‘s parent.

However, as it happens so often in Rolamaton, Hackle gets a chance at redemption in the Robocitan community.

Hackle of Rolamaton: inspired by DJD Tarn

Hackle from Rolamaton & Darkseal from Planet Electronia/The Gearshift Family

The inspiration/homage lies in the fact that Hackle, like Tarn, was the leader of an attack team and he was zealously devoted to his cause (IAR); also, like Megatron in Tarn’s case, Hackle is tied to a popular character in the Rolamaton storyline.

My decision to include a homage to DJD Tarn derives from a discussion I had with a close friend who also helps me with Rolamaton artwork. She has motherly feelings for Tarn, and wishes he had a chance at redemption in the IDW storyline, so I decided to include a “representation” of Tarn in Rolamaton and one in Planet Electronia / The Gearshift Family, which she pretty much co-authors idea-wise.

I have to say I’ve never been happier to oblige. Having Hackle in the Rolamaton continuity makes me happy, too, as a Tarn fan.

Looking Forward to the DJD Tarn Toy by Mastermind Creations

Mastermind Creations’ Kultur is the unofficial Tarn DJD figure that became popular among Transformers fans.

If you haven’t seen it before, this is my favorite review (by emgo316):

Kultur is definitely a good toy, and although the face behind the Decepticon insignia mask is not the right one (it was based on another Transformer’s, Roller), it’s similar enough to Tarn’s actual face that I really don’t mind it.

I would love to add this toy to my collection, budget allowing, before the end of 2021.

Over to you: if you know IDW’s Transformers MTMTE, who’s your favorite character? Have you thought about buying the toy? Did they inspire a character of yours?

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