Transformers Ongoing issue #17 is packed with plenty of action...I suggest grabbing it Wednesday if you’ve been interested in the series at all. There’s a huge WTF moment at the end of this issue that will have you begging for more, or calling foul. I suggest grabbing this purely for the significance of that particular moment in Transformers history.
Alex Milne does a really nice job of adding his uber-detailed art to the series in this his second full issue of the series. He sticks with Don’s designs, but still manages to add a few of his own tiny additions to the designs and resurrect long lost members of the early Earth Autobot cast to put his stamp on the series. Alex keeps the chins (goatees?), but manages to lose some of the facial and body details that were hard for some readers and critics to accept from Don.
Writer Mike Costa works to create what can seem to be best called the penultimate issue. The lead to the end (of this arc anyway). And this issue has plenty to offer as the issue that happens along the way to the end. Has he gone too far? Has it taken too long? Was it worth the wait of 17 issues? Good questions to think about.
Here comes some spoiler-y plot from the issue, without giving away too much!
As we saw last issue...the newly Shockwave upgraded Megatron returned to Earth and smacked the Ultra Magnus led Autobots in their collective face plates as they tried to turn with tail between legs and make their escape off of Earth. More of Megatron’s plots are revealed this issue and he really wants a piece of Optimus Prime, absolutely sure that Optimus and his fellow warriors didn’t explode, get deactivated, or get lost at sea on their way back from ‘the International Incident’ as has been suggested due to their absence.
Optimus obliges him, showing up, as Megatron knew he would with his group of warriors ready to take Megatron into custody.
Of course, this wouldn’t be Transformers if Megatron didn’t have some sort of trap involved. His goal: the humiliation of Optimus Prime before ultimately destroying him.
We find out Megatron has placed the captured Earth Autobots in a most precarious situation. Battered, trapped, and low on energy, Bumblebee and company have been placed in the middle of a school’s playground and who is there with guns pointed on them? Just some of the humans with ‘Megatron guns’ being fed a bit of misleading, mind-warping propaganda. Itchy trigger fingers, a huge crowd of gawkers, police, and very nervous Autobots are in a situation just waiting for some sort of ignition. Enter Jazz, and Spike who have been dispatched by Prowl and Optimus Prime to go try to help their brethren escape this horrible situation. The police choose to be very unhelpful, and we get our match strike...
Megatron boasts a lot to Prime about ideals and values, and Prime’s weakness for protecting life, even if that life seems to be on the edge of destroying him. The irony of Prime’s belief and how humans‘ perceive these robots is what Megatron looks to escalate, and use to destroy Prime’s faith, before destroying his body. Not just killing him, but utterly DESTROYING him.
Optimus Prime and his Autobots are held at bay from attacking Megatron by a gun pointblank in Ultra Magnus’ face, if Prime does not let things play out the consequences for Ultra Magnus look to be fatal. This situation leads to possibly one of the other more exciting points in the issue, and perhaps the series, besides the Jazz and Spike situation.
I’m going to leave off here with the plot spoilers. There is a small side story that works on finishing Brawn’s end of the story last issue where he was playing roughly with Starscream, who was playing very roughly with Thundercracker, and leaves us yet another piece of unfinished business to finish next issue, or in the near future.
This issue is mostly an enjoyable and fast read. The art is really well done, and the writing takes us to some points with characters both Autobot and Decepticon that many of us would not have predicted we would be talking about. While never perfect, this issue hits a memorable high, perhaps that some predicted, but that will ultimately change the face of perception for very many players.
Thanks for reading. I hope I encouraged you to keep trying with this series, and I hope you part with some of your hard earned dollars to pick this up tomorrow. I know some will still find this Transformers iteration to be subpar, and not worth the money due to this or that, but I found this issue to be entertaining, and fun, with as I said, some really cool (or sucky) surprises.