History (Pre-Beast Wars)
The Razor's Edge (2007)
In the Transformers Collector's Club's exclusive prose story, Airazor's original name is revealed to be Wing Saber. In the story, a routine reconnaissance mission goes wrong when Wing Saber was captured by the Predacon torture master known as Steelgrave. Despite his array of fiendish devices and Bond-villain mentality, Wing Saber was able to elude Steelgrave and fight her way through his henchmen before retreating to her cloaked star ship, the Chromia 10. Although she escaped, Wing Saber bore the physical and mental scars from her encounter with Steelgrave for some time.
Later, she was assigned to rendezvous with a pair of Maximals named Crossblades and Stiletto for a new mission. In violation of the Pax Cybertronia, a group of Predacons had been attacking the J'kozian sector and set up a troop manufacturing factory on the conquered world of Nibari. Holographically posing as barmaids, the trio inebriated most of Steelgrave's troops into stasis lock before proceeding into the factory, with the intention of sabotaging it. Their infiltration was cut short by a raid on the factory by the native Nibari population, led by an native fighter named Ritash. Wing Saber's group was forced to divert their mission in order to keep the organics from being completely slaughtered. They managed to avoid multiple casualties, until the true leader of Steelgrave's Predacons made his presence known--the G1 version of Megatron.
Wing Saber's crew retreated with all due haste, taking Ritash with them. A reassessment of the situation was clearly called for, which caused them to come up with a new strategy. After a review of the history records, Wing Saber decided that the frequent quotations of "No Known Weaknesses" overlooked Megatron's infamous arrogance, and that was what they needed to exploit. The crew of the Chromia 10 challenged Megatron to combat in full view of his subordinates, forcing him to agree in order to save face.
During the ritualized combat, Crossblades noticed that Megatron was nowhere near as invulnerable as history records indicated, and sensing a ruse, the Maximals concentrated their firepower on Megatron's chest: this revealed "Megatron" to be little more than an exo-suit run by his ex-lieutenant, a female former Decepticon-turned-Predacon named Flamewar. With Flamewar revealed, and the drone troopers brought under the control of Ritash and his rebels, Nibari was well on its way to being freed and rebuilt.
Dawn of Futures Past (2006)
In the Botcon exclusive comic book "Dawn of Futures Past", which revealed what occurred on Cybertron before the start of the Beast Wars series, it is shown that Airazor (whose chasis was a feminized version of the 2004 Slugslinger figure from Transformers: Energon), then called Wing Saber, was the pilot of a star cruiser called the Chromia-10 (a homage to her Japanese numbering of C-10).
She was commissioned by Maximal security officer Unit-2 (her future lover Tigatron) with piloting the ship to chase after Megatron's band of Predacons, who had stolen two valuable Golden Discs and a ship called the Darksyde. While chasing the ship (alongside Optimus Primal's crew in the Axalon), they are attacked by Laserbeak and Buzzsaw, agents of the former G1 Predacon Divebomb (who wanted Megatron to escape with the discs). While they manage to put up a good fight, the Chromia-10 is severly damaged, and its occupants fatally wounded. The Maximal later called Rhinox manages to remotely transfer their sparks into two empty protoforms on board the Axalon, but in the process their memories of their former lives were lost.
She first appeared (voiced by Pauline Newstone) in the season 1 episode "The Spark", where her damaged stasis pod is found by Rhinox and Cheetor, who guard it while Rhinox tries to get it back online and keep her spark from fading, using Cheetor's as a jump-start. When the Predacons Terrorsaur and Waspinator arrive to claim the pod, Cheetor and Rhinox buy time for the process to complete, and are nearly injured in the fight. The tide is turned when Airazor arises from the pod, taking the form of a peregrine falcon. She then joins Primal's team as their second flier, allowing her and Primal to evenly match the Maximals and Predacons in terms of air support.
She also began to form a bond between herself and Tigatron, to the point of the two becoming romantically involved. She was present at most of the bigger battles of season one, such as a fight with the Predacons on a mysterious flying island built by an alien race. She and Tigatron also helped the other Maximals regain their senses after the Predacons stole the Axalon's rectifier coil, forcing them to remain in beast mode, which caused them to regress to their animal instincts.
She was also present when the Maximals and Predacons entered into a truce so they could prepare for the attack by the same aliens (called the Vok) who created the flying island and seeded the planet with false energon deposits, as part of an experiment. She and Rattrap end up capturing Blackarachnia (who had downloaded the mind of Tarantulas) and force her to make adjustments to a stasis pod, converting it into a ship to be piloted in order to destroy the aliens' main weapon (which was disguised as a second moon). Optimus Primal pilots the ship, but discovers it is rigged so he cannot escape. He destroys the construct, but at the cost of his own life.
This in turn causes a quantum surge to bathe the planet in strange energy, turning Megatron, Tarantulas' body, Rattrap, and Cheetor into Transmetals, while killing Terrorsaur and Scorponok and leaving Airazor, Tigatron, Blackarachnia, Rhinox, Waspinator, and Dinobot unscathed (this was the year Airazor's Transmetal figure was released). Later, she and Tigatron decide to head off and search for the remaining stasis pods, but remain in contact with the rest of the Maximals. While in a strange valley, they come across a weird-looking plant, which turns out to be a Vok device that snared them and shot them into space after turning them into energy. Cheetor, who had arrived while looking for them, was too late to save them.
In the third season episode "Other Victories", the Vok merged the captive Tigatron and Airazor into their emissary, Tigerhawk, to use as a weapon against Megatron, whom they deemed an unnecessary variable in their experiment. The sparks of Tigatron and Airazor, now merged, followed Tigerhawk to Earth, where he destroys the Darksyde and sends the Predacons scrambling. He ends up captured by Tarantulas, who is hinted at being a descendant of the 'spawn of Unicron', and is subjected to a process where the Vok influence is exorcised and absorbed into Tarantulas, which destroys his body, and triggers a self-destruct sequence in the lair.
Cheetor (now a Transmetal 2), arrives in time to get Tigerhawk's body out of the collapsing lair, and when they are a safe distance, the merged spark of Tigatron and Airazor enters Tigerhawk, making him "whole" at last. In the two-part series finale "Nemesis", Tigerhawk sacrifices himself in an attempt to slow down the onslaught of the Decepticon warship Nemesis, which had been commandeered by Megatron.
3H Enterprises/Botcon Comics (2000/2001)
After the Beast Wars ended, Tarantulas, presumed destroyed, returned in a new, undead form that was fueled by his new Vok powers. The remaining Vok assembled warriors to end this threat, creating Primal Prime and giving new Transmetal bodies to the extant sparks of Airazor and Tigatron, who had split after Tigerhawk was destroyed.
After awakening a stranded stasis pod containing Ramulus, opening a second pod triggered an ambush by Tarantulas's band of Predacons, including the now Transmetal 2 Spittor, Iguanus, Razorclaw, and a reborn Transmetal 2 Ravage. Airazor immediately saved Tigatron's life, knocking Spittor aside before Tigatron would have unwittingly come in contact with Spittor's body, covered entirely in cyber venom. This maneuver left her vulnerable to Ravage's gunfire, which knocked her out of the air.
The battle ended catastrophically, and Ramulus, Airazor, and Tigatron were forced to carry a critically-wounded Primal Prime back to the Ark after Tarantulas ripped the Matrix of Leadership from his chest. As Airazor and Tigatron conferred with the seemingly absent Vok, Airazor experienced great pains due to her battle wounds. But before she could explain, the Ark was under attack by Ravage and the Predacons (Due to 3H Productions' loss of the Botcon license, "Primeval Dawn", the story Airazor appears in, was never completed.
It is worth noting, however, that Airazor was not present in the subsequently-placed "Wreckers" storyline. "Wreckers: Finale Part II" even has Tigatron awkwardly not answering Rattrap's query as to where Airazor is now. It is unclear for certain what happened to her in the interim).
The Beast Wars Sourcebook states a different future for Airazor, where in an alternate reality, after Tigerhawk's body was destroyed, the two sparks contained within split, regaining their individuality. The Vok then proceeded in bestowing upon Airazor a new Transmetal form utilizing a blank protoform. It is unconnected to the 3H Enterprises fiction.
Fun Publications Prose Fiction
In the Transtech stories published by the Transformers Collector's Club (which spun off a proposed Transformers toy series by Hasbro called "Transtech"), Airazor (in her Dawn of Futures Past form) became a resident of Axiom Nexus at an unknown point in time. Axiom Nexus is a community made up of Transformers from different realities, where they could live until they could gain a pass to use a warp gate to return to their native dimensions.
She joined the offworlders' Freelance Police Legion (a volunteer-based group) and also forged ties with their parallel organization, the Axiom Nexus Security Administration, run by the planet's native Cybertronians, the Transcendent Technomorphs. Airazor eventually received authorization as an inspector in the Security Administration, giving her the rare status as an officer for both police forces in Axiom Nexus. Despite her official status, Airazor still enjoyed her vices, and was a frequent customer of the Widow's Cafe Cybertronian at the edge of the Heap, owned and run by the female Autobot Crystal Widow (whose toy is a repaint of Beast Machines Blackarachnia), who became a close friend of Airazor.
Airazor was involved in the first detaining of the G1 Autobots Jackpot (an Action Master) and Hubcap, in the prose story "Gone Too Far", after the assassination of the G1 Decepticon Action Master Gutcruncher sent Axiom Nexus into chaos. She and an officer named Stungun stood guard over the duo while awaiting Security Commander Cheetor's arrival. As is often the case with fembots, she had absolutely no tolerance for Jackpot's sweet-talk. Upon his arrival, Cheetor dismissed Airazor to keep an eye on three "units of interest" who had recently come through Processing Central (which takes place in the prose story "Transcendent").
He casually suggested she recruit some freelancers as well to keep the surveillance less official, since it was technically out of their jurisdiction. Her departure served a double purpose, leaving a viable exit for the lowtech Autobots to flee and draw out the real assassin for the Security Administration. Once the Decepticon mobster Black Shadow (who turned out to be the assassin) and his pretender shell were deactivated, Airazor swooped in and took Jackpot into custody again immediately. Despite his claims of having found a real connection, she was thrilled when Commander Cheetor expedited his departure to his home universal stream.
Shortly after her promotion to inspector, Airazor had many an occasion to drop in on her old friend Crystal Widow at the Widow's Cafe. It was hardly a social call, however, as the Security Administration had been requesitioned by General Demolishor of the military police to conduct a series of investigations into some courier murders and the theft of unauthorized TransTech technology. One of Crystal Widow's regulars, Escargon, had been pegged for the matter. Airazor tried to execute a quiet arrest, but General Demolishor's attention span and flair for the dramatic turned it into a decidedly loud raid of the premises. Demolishor also executed Escargon on the spot while Airazor was attempting to gain custody of the suspect.
In his zeal, however, General Demolishor hadn't thought to check if Escargon had the stolen property before shooting him dead. Sure enough, a thorough search by Airazor appeared to turn up no traces of the property on his person. Dejected, General Demolishor turned his frustrations on the clientelle, particularly on several "mechanoids of interest" (the GoBot characters Small Foot, Road Rage, Pathfinder, Bad Boy, and Treads) who had arrived around the same time as Escargon.
With the help of some quick legal jargon, Airazor managed to talk Demolishor out of doing further damage to the bar or Crystal Widow's customers. After he departed, Airazor explained the seriousness of the situation--Escargon had stolen a set of transit passes, official letters for TransTech black ops work that allowed unmolested access to any transwarp platform facility--literally a "Get Out of Axiom Nexus Free" Card.
General Demolishor was not so easily deterred, though, and soon wound up battling Crystal Widow and the GoBots in the Heap until Airazor and Commander Cheetor arrived with members of the Security Administration. The general was quickly halted when Cheetor told him he had informed Commander Megatron personally about the issuing of these unauthorized transit passes, and the fact that Demolishor had lost them. Because the Heap was outside of Security Administration jurisdiction, the collar officially went to Airazor as a representative of the Freelance Police Legion.
As Demolishor was being led away, Commander Cheetor requested a private word with Airazor. In no uncertain terms, he very loudly did not say he knew she had swiped the passes while frisking Escargon, and did not tell her to make sure the passes were handed over to the GoBots. Reluctantly, Airazor did as she was not ordered to do and gave up both her meal tickets.
Airazor's first figure was released in 1997 as part of the second wave of Beast Wars figures. Before her release, the toy designers decided to make her a female Transformer (along with Blackarachnia) in order to diversify the character selection (strangely, when Takara released her in a two pack with the Predacon Insecticon, it was as a male character, except in the Beast Wars manga). Her figure was also part of a wave that dropped the spring-loaded transformation gimmick. The figure was also released in a darker, metallic paint job and packaged with a VHS tape of the first two episodes of season two of the cartoon series (the same was done with the Predacon Razorclaw).
In 1998, she was given a deluxe Transmetal figure, with a "vehicle mode" in the form of two pontoons that fold down from her wings, making her the equivalent of a seaplane. In robot mode, the chromed beast-mode backplate can fold around it for a "shield" mode. Some early releases of the Hasbro Airazor have much more lavender-hued chrome than the normal blue of later versions.
The Japanese version of this toy has the yellow plastics replaced with a bright orange and the opaque white replaced with a translucent white plastic, and was available single or in a two-pack with the Predacon Fuzor Quickstrike. The mold was later repainted in 2000 as part of the "Fox Kids" assortment of deluxe Transmetal repaints (along with Rhinox, Tarantulas, Cheetor, Rattrap, and Waspinator), and was also available as a Jafcon exclusive in Japan, in a 3-pack with Rattrap and Cheetor. The Transmetal Airazor mold would later be repainted and retooled in 2003 as part of the Transformers: Armada series.
Airazor's gender in the Hasbro line is due to Beast Wars story editors Bob Forward and Larry DiTillio's insistence. The original Airazor toy wasn't developed with a specific gender in mind, but the two writers wanted a larger female presence in the show, and the Airazor toy seemed as good a choice as any. They requested the change early enough that the toy's packaging bio could have its pronouns changed to female. The later Transmetal version of Airazor was the first American-released Transformer mold created to represent a female character (but not the first female character released--that honor belongs to the Botcon 1994 exclusive character Nightracer).
In the Japanese dub of Beast Wars, Airazor was turned into a boy as a means to hopefully increase toy sales. For the TV series, his relationship with Tigatron was played off somewhat differently to avoid complaints of homosexuality. Tigatron was presented as a samurai retainer with protective feelings towards his young ward; their closeness addressed in a "brotherly" sort of way. Despite that, there was still enough innuendo left over for the gender-bending to become unsettling.
The Japanese script's near-relentless "jokey" tone didn't help, and there was simply no way for the dub team to get past the sequence in "Other Visits (Part 1)" when Airazor and Tigatron stare into each others' eyes while holding hands and slowly leaning in for a kiss. In that instance the dub team had male Airazor fully "come out" and begin to express his affection for Tigatron just before the two of them were abducted by the Vok. Japanese magazine editors, responding to letters from confused young fans, gently explained that "some people are just like that".
In the case of the Beast Wars Metals manga, however, Airazor's female gender was retained, as was her romantic relationship with Tigatron. This was due to the fact that Airazor's Transmetal toy was likely the first Transformer toy designed to intentionally represent a female character, and there was never a manga for the original Beast Wars cartoon in Japan, so the comic's backstory could be whatever writer/artist Shōji Imaki wanted it to be (The manga itself has numerous irreconcilable differences from the show's events right out of the gate).
Though Airazor's gender was "restored", her personality underwent an overhaul, no longer resembling her tough, tomboy-ish Western characterization. Since Japanese entertainment for young boys apparently does not include female warrior characters in Transformers (Arcee was made a secretary in the original G1 manga), Airazor was reduced to a helpless damsel in distress with a subservient and single-minded devotion to her "Tigatron-sama".