When I first started writing this arc I really did intend to have Ultra Magnus, Springer and Kup change Rodimus’ mind and make him work with Optimus. When I finished #121 I didn’t find it very satisfying so I completely changed it so Rodimus was actually the one who changed Ultra Magnus’ mind. It worked out better in the long run not only for this particular story but for Rodimus/ Hot Rod’s characterization as well. In the first panel of #123, I tried to convey that in Rodimus’ mind he was still Hot Rod trying desperately to get Optimus’ approval.
Nothing really of note to mention for the Peanut Gallery panels…the one that stands out from my memory is the one for #121 when Hot Shot says he learned the word ‘dammit’, which was my reference to the 1986 animated Movie when the swear words were such a big deal to parents. Since the Peanut Gallery panels for the other two were pretty much things mentioned in passing I think it’s definitely apparent that at this point I really started focusing on the overall story and not just the punchline.