Rung was an established psychotherapist as far back as six million years ago, in the times of Nova Prime, making him one of the few identified survivors of that era. Rung is a quiet, unassuming guy always in the background but he's managed to meet almost every post-war surviving Autobot. Rewind has called him a historical constant.
Rung was created for IDW's Transformers Continuity. He is first written in the Wrecker Story: Zero Point that was published in Transformers: Last Stand Of The Wreckers TPB. He was first seen in IDW's The Transformers issue #22 by writer James Roberts and editor Andy Schmidt. The name "Rung" is a reference to Carl Jung, founder of analytical psychology. The mention of "Rungian analysis" is a further play on this. In an interview Alex Milne stated he modeled Rung's appearance on actors Brent Spiner and David Hyde-Pierce.
Major Story Arcs
Last Stand of the Wreckers
Rung did a psychological evaluation of Impactor before his trial for unlawful executions. He ended up being physically assaulted and threatened with extreme violence if he tried 'putting ideas' in Impactor's head. In the end, Rung was left questioning whether Autobot High Command shared the blame for Impactor's crimes for turning a blind eye to the robot's growing psychopathy.
Rung later performed a pre-mission psych-screening on new Wreckers Rotorstorm, Ironfist, Pyro, and Guzzle to estimate if they were suited to be put on the Garrus-9 case. He noted Rotorstorm's dual personality, Pyro being a apotheosis sufferer who were known for sacrificing themselves, Rotorstorm as an extreme sufferer of apotheosis and that he was suppressing his own personality for a copy of another's, and Guzzle as having personality flaws but no real psychological flaws. Rung declared them cleared for mission.
With Ironfist, he was impressed by his enthusiasm and knowledge, but not by his actual combat experience and mentality. Rung advised against Ironfist's participation, but changed his conclusion when he received 'unsolicited advice' from an undisclosed party.
Rung later treated the shell-shocked Autobot Flattop. He discovered Flattop was a survivor of the Babu Yar atrocity. What pushed him over the edge this time was an encounter with the Shimmer. Rung tried to rationalize the appearance of Shimmer, but Flattop died in his office.
Kup is one of Rung's oldest friends, and asked him to examine Springer after he was left him in a coma. Rung believed that a certain emotional triggers could cause Springer's subconscious to force his spark across the zero point. Rung asked Roadbuster to read Wreckers: Declassified datalogs in hopes that the memories would have some effect.
Rung was among the survivors of Cyclonus's attack on Kimia Facility. He and the others drifted in a cramped escape pod for some time until they were rescued by Arcee.
After Cybertron was reborn in the wake of the D-Void's defeat, Rung joined Rodimus's crew on the Lost Light in search for the Knights of Cybertron. Before he could get on the ship, his arm was detached by a wildly flying Cyclonus. While getting his arm repaired by Ratchet, Rung was choked by an irrational Whirl. The psychiatrist managed to get him to release his grip when he reminded Whirl that he would go back to prison, forever, if he didn't stay in line.
When Skids joined the crew, Rung informed him of their quest to find the Knights of Cybertron. Rung later had a close call with a Sparkeater, but was saved by Skids. It was assumed the Sparkeater would go after the brightest Autobot, therefore Rodimus used Rung to lure the Sparkeater and defeat it.
Rung tried to help the newly-returned Fortress Maximus. Maximus was tortured by the Overlord and caused his mental state to break down. Maximus later snapped and went on a rampage gunning down Autobots that reminded him of Overlord. During his rampage Rung and Whirl were both taken hostage. Rung tried to reason with Maximus. While recording and broadcasting via a microphone in his thumb, Maximus noticed it and he tore Rung's thumb off.
Maximus believed the issue was due to Prowl's delay in sending help to Garrus-9, instead of Overlord's torture. Rewind played a holo-image of Overlord torturing Maximus causing him to freeze up and crumbled to his knees. Rung comforted him and the hostage situation ended.
Unfortunately, a shot from Swerve meant to disable Fortress Maximus, hit Rung in the head. A memorial service was later held for Rung. Surprisingly, Rung's spark and brain module survived and the medical staff believed he might pull through. Red Alert came to see the comatose psychiatrist. Believing that Rung's near-death was a result of the recording he had played to Rung, the paranoid security officer said he couldn't tell anyone else the truth he'd discovered that the voice was Overlord's, who was strung up and sedated in the bowels of the Lost Light.
After Rung's head was rebuilt, Rewind decided that they could help repair the psychiatrist's brain by telling him a story. He assembled a group of Autobots linked to the events and tried to kick-start Rung's brain. With no success he tried again, with the same results. Unwilling to give up he then tried a third time with a new group of Autobots. Rewind checked Rung's vitals during the story and found no mental signs. Noticing Rewind was on the wrong track, Skids tried a simpler idea. Rung had met so many Autobots but left little impact on them, he deliberately got his name wrong several times, and an irritated Rung immediately said his name was "Rung. Forever."
After being fully repaired he assisted Brainstorm in repairing the holomatter avatars to be more effective and reflect the Autobot's inner psyche. He later joined Swerve, Skids, Tailgate, Rewind, Cyclonus, Whirl, and Ultra Magnus to Hedonia, where he had to help drag an unconscious Magnus back home. It was then that he remembered what Red Alert had told him before his 'accident', and he reported it to Rodimus.
Powers & Weaknesses
Rung is highly intelligent and has the ability to link to other Transformers' minds. Unfortunately for all his smarts Rung is not a strong fighter. He has a microphone in the thumb of his right hand.
- Allegiance: Autobot
- Sub Group: None
- Function: Psychiatrist
- Alt-Modes: Unknown
- Color Schemes: Peach/White
Rung was referenced in the unofficial Transformers novel written by James Roberts.