TRAPPED! Alone on a strange world, the crew of the Lost Light struggle against an unknown enemy—but what does this have to do with SHOCKWAVE’s master plan? Answer: everything. Meanwhile, OPTIMUS PRIME finds an old friend in the Dead Universe!
And Prowl insults Ravage
Underwater, outerspace, aftermath. Boy, there's a lot of stuff going on. The Necrotitan boomed, the mini-nites swarmed, Cyclonus is doomed, and all for the sake of my own rhymes. Though something really is up with Cyclonus. Did John Barber and James Roberts deliver on all fronts this issue? Maybe. Are we moving in full-on Infinite Crisis? Possibly.
Crossing universes, everything is connected, the Ammonites turn out to be pretty cool (well, it is their in-pack issue after all). The tones shift adequately and appropriately between the different sets, but actually all maintain the established darker undertones to them, which is good for a sense of continuity.
Quick! We need a re-cap!
I think I figured out what worked in this issue. The settings are clearly fine, we're all expecting them by now, and there's not too much stalling. But the dialogue is better. A lot better. The interaction between characters, interrupting each other, arguing, the whole thing - it's working, it feels like a cast.
Or a family - Daddimus!
Interesting. There are so many revelations, reveals, twists and turns that I almost got tired of them on the first couple of reads. It felt crammed. And yet.. I enjoyed it, I like just how devious Shockwave is, and his treatment of Megatron. I like Magnus commanding the Lost Light. I even like the very little happenings in the Dead Universe. Onwards!
Oh wow. How many artists again? Nick Roche, James Raiz, Livio Ramondelli, Atilio Rojo and Robert Gill - five. Five art styles. Two for the Lost Light, two for Cybertron, one for the Dead Universe. I don't mind them as much as I did with chapter 2, Rojo and Gill blend well together, I have no clue why Raiz and Roche did two parts for the same thing (well, I do, but still), though.. they fit the tones, really well, too. And Ramondelli's Dead Universe is definitely dark, I'll give you that.
Darkness, darkness everywhere
With so many artists, just one colourist - even if it is Josh Perez - would not have been enough, so I'm glad to see a second: Romulo Fajardo Jr. There's definitely a different texture to some of the colours, if I've spotted the pages right, but they still manage to work with Perez' already established stuff. Good to see wide-spread damage, after the Necroboom (my word).
Oh anothe-- VA-KOOM
And good to see Gilberto Lazcano on letters again, too! Some good work in terms of giving voices where needed, and not getting in the way of the action with sound effects. I appreciate that in lettering. A shout out to Raiz' cover, which is stunningly powerful, and Casey Coller's main cover, too!
Thoughts Spoilerish ahead
It was fun. I said above, I got annoyed at all the reveals crammed into one issue, but then reread them all and couldn't stop chuckling. I almost want Barber and Roberts to leave Megatron in his current state, before it all goes combiner-shaped again. Dialogue has picked up, action has picked up, pick this one up.
Will this actually happen..?
Five artists and two colourists? Could be very very bad. But it wasn't! Sometimes it feels a little odd, especially with the final pages and the later Shockwave moments, but it didn't stop me from having a good read. I'd rather it were toned down again next time, though (I know I know, time constraints). NEXT!
STARSCREAM UNDER FIRE! The all-new, all-redesigned, all-leader-of-the-planet STARSCREAM makes his move! Will he stand up for CYBERTRON, or fall under SHOCKWAVE’s onslaught? Meanwhile—the Lost Light receives a desperate call from help from an old friend!
His fabulous, sassy move
PREVIOUSLY, in the reviews: People in the Dead Universe, people on Cybertron, people on the Lost Light! Orion Pax, Starscream, Ultra Magnus! Got it? Got it! (!) But, on the other hand, the Roll Call page has shifted, and that's a nifty little placeholder, actually, giving a sense of the different scenes and their cast.
Dead people in the universe?
John Barber and James Roberts keep weaving the tale of this previously unknown prophecy telling of the advent of a Dark Cybertron, with cyclopses, titans, comets and the such. So it all makes sense. Or does it? I'm not sure how far I can buy into a long-standing legend that has never really been heard of before, though.
I like what they're doing with Rattrap, even the very explicit reveals about his character or potential ulterior motives. What I also like is the Magnus-driven plot aboard the Lost Light, pointing to a different use of his character, now that all the layers have been sliced off. And Brainstorm is still great.
The plot is actually unexpected at this point, I was not anticipating the Necrotitan's involvement so soon, nor was I expecting its aftermath so quickly. I am extremely intrigued by what on earth is Shockwave planning, that's for sure. Will we ever know?
I feel a lot better about the artwork in this issue, even if it is the same two artists: James Raiz for Lost Light Scenes, Atilio Rojo for Cybertron scenes. The latter's linework looks much better, inexplicably, since last week's issue, and there are some brilliant shots of some (sigh) 'old friends'. Raiz really works well with Magnus and Brainstorm, and the inks don't look as dark as previously, though it can get a bit cluttered at times.
Where we're going, we don't need no chairs
I was going to say something about the colours and how they work with the lines but HOLY HOTPANTS BATMAN. Josh Perez takes splash and spreads to new levels, and you'll see what I mean when you read it! The colours are good all over, but those scenes are ridiculously good. Tom B. Long is equally impressive in his lettering, and never gets in the way unless needed. But when he is, he adds some great personality to the noises and sounds.
Wait for it...
As I said, the two different styles work a lot better for me in this issue, for some reason. Maybe it's the script transition, maybe it's the colours, maybe it's the tone getting darker, but whatever it is, it works. Make sure to check out Nick Roche's cover B for some added goodness, too.
Thoughts Spoilerish ahead
It's getting there, oh is it getting there. We're finally clocking into what might be happening, we get some good action out of it, the characters are being set.. and yet, it feels like we're going back to previous Barber-isms. We'll have to see how it all plays out, but I am not impressed or surprised at the final pages, nor at the big event of the issue. Hm. I like it, but I'm annoyed at it, too.
Well put, Arcee
The art seems to blend better for me, and Perez' work on the two styles definitely contributes to that. I'm glad we only have two artists this time round, and I'd rather this were the case from here on. I have a feeling this issue will only pass readers' judgement once we see how the aftermath evolves.
ZERO INITIATIVE! As RODIMUS PRIME urgently struggles to comprehend the what, why, and wherefore of SPIKE WITWICKY, GALVATRON, JHIAXUS, and a DARK MATRIX creature, and specifically how they contribute to the final dissolution of time, space and everything in between! Unless NIGHTBEAT and BUMBLEBEE can shake loose some answers, the future—is cancelled.
Oh and Starscream shows up, I guess
We've had adventures in time and space, we've had Hot Rod become Rodimus Prime, we've had Bludgeon dying his death, Galvatron fighting Ultra Magnus - it is now time to start dragging them all together, into the final arc of Transformers: ReGeneration One. This is it, people. This is the actual end. Again.
Aw, he looks so sad
Simon Furman at the helm (duh) we get a story that ties together the events of the past arc and Issue Zero, attempting to neatly place everything in its own space, while still making sense of the whole. More or less. It's good to get back to Spike, actually, and his resentment towards Cybertronians, and I am interesting to see if it will play any actual impactful role in the plot to come.
"SAY THAT TO MY FACE!"
Though at times the dialogue and interaction between the two 'main' characters, Bumblebee and Nightbeat, can feel a bit G1esque at its most childish, the older readers will definitely enjoy some of the references, even if not direct ones. And by 'main' I mean the ones teased in the solicits, as Rodimus still takes the spotlight.
Gee, kids! What fun we'll have!
Furman does a really good job with Rodimus, especially by using the characters around him to help flesh out his newfound leader personality and the burden of responsibilities that come with it -- and then he garbles the gurgling waters by throwing in all the plot elements he needs from Zero Space in the final two acts of the issue. Buckle up. It gets bumpy.
Guido Guidi is still going strong, though with some very marked differences between the opening pages and the rest of the issue. We get to see a variety of styles and poses, all about different cast members, organic, mech and both together, which is always good, and the final page is something magnificent. But after this issue, the one word that to me describes Guidi's work is FACE. He loves giant faces. He really really does.
Stephen Baskerville does some good stuff with Guidi's pencils, and works on finishes in the later pages. He's a master chameleon, adding just that little touch of his own to his blend-in inks. And of course, JP Bove glistens again with his amazing colours, as we've seen in Issue Zero. I'll stop before going into full-on gushing.
Oklahoma has never looked to beautiful. Sorry Oklahoma.
Chris Mowry on letters does a brilliant job too, completing but not covering the action, and helping out with the character's voices. The artistic team on the issue does a really good job of working with the script, and it always knocks up the enjoyment of the story. And don't miss out on the covers - Geoff Senior and Guidi dazzle once again!
Thoughts Spoilerish ahead
As a first issue of a final arc it does all it needs to do, and does it well. We may be getting tired of the 'beginning of the end of the beginning of the..' trope, but hey, it's true, and at least this is the *actual* end. The dialogue can be a bit.. Furmanesque, including Furmanisms, but it's what I've come to expect.
The art is always brilliant, from pencils to inks to colours to letters, and really helps deliver a comic that could feel very out of place in the newer readership. I am actually really intrigued as to what is to come, and will be looking forward, trepidantly, to next month. You coming along?
THE DEAD UNIVERSE! ORION PAX—the ’bot who was once OPTIMUS PRIME—joins RODIMUS and the crew of the Lost Light in a desperate bid to outmaneuver SHOCKWAVE—by returning to the legendary Dead Universe! Meanwhile, BUMBLEBEE faces down the biggest—literally biggest—threat he’s ever seen on CYBERTRON!
After the setting up and minor reveals in DC#1, it's time to get things going. But first - We get another brief 'Previously' page, which while nice (and bit melodramatic), did not feel as necessary this time round. We'll see if it becomes customary, and if it overstays its welcome in the next issues. The Roll Call page was nice, on the other hand, even if just to convey a sense of the cast, and its major players.
Drama! Excitement! Exclamation marks!
While Bumblebee/Goldbugfire and the Auto/Dinobots stand around on Cybertron not doing much, Orion Pax and his crew now aboard the Lost Light concoct their plan to approach the Dead Universe, to which we've been introduced for so long now it feels like that relative you always dread at family reunions - though Brainstorm seems fascinated by it.
Unsurprisingly, to be fair
It seems as though the dialogue has picked up again, and it may or may not be more of Roberts' words than Barber's this time round. But it does feel welcome. The two writers manage to approach the characters of Orion and Starscream in a good, more nuanced way, giving us a better look at what might be happening below the surface.
..that also works
It is gaining some momentum, and we're developing a much better sense of what is at stake and what may happen, with the focus shifting to other characters than the ones we're all execting (though I worry about falling back onto the same ones eventually) - but I feel it'll work a lot better in TPB format than as a single issue.
Now, the artwork. I'm having some trouble making my mind up about this. I welcome the introduction of new names into the franchise, and it's good to see variation between different styles. But having three artists (Raiz, Rojo and Ramondelli) with very different styles in the same story does not convince me as much. They all do an impressive job, though Rojo's faces can seem a little off in proportion, but I feel as though Raiz and Rojo could've been swapped, with the latter on the Lost Light and the former, darker style, on Cybertron.
Though that is a gloriously dark Starscream
The colours, however, are Perez' usual goodness. They play really well with the sources of light and shadows in the panels, and the two different art-styles, without jarring with Raiz' darker or Rojo's lighter lines. Ramondelli, as usual, colours his own art, and does an equally good job in terms of tone and mood setting. The new letterer, Gilberto Lazcano, is intriguingly light-touched, and I would like to see more from him in the future.
Red meets orange, in dim light
The three styles work by themselves, with some shining moments for each, but I have a hard time deciding whether I like their juxtaposition or not. I have nothing to complain about the colours, and even though I chose not to show any Ramondelli images in the review, his work is good and definitely well suited to the tone of that part of the story. The cover by EJ Su is also excellent!
Thoughts Spoilerish ahead
The story seems to be gaining its ground, and seeding some future plot elements nicely. It still reads as a bit jumbled though, even if just because of the sheer scale of the cast and settings for the action to take place. I'm fully confident, though, that by next month, once this and RID have had a chance to settle, we'll be back to the usual, expected greatness.
There's a prophecy with PUNS!
The confusion is not entirely helped out by having so many artists work on different parts; even if it does make clear where we are, the styles don't always work with the tone. The colours, on the other hand, always suit the style. I am curious to see what will happen as this goes on, and if it is to be the new standard to differentiate settings.
Seibertron.com user and toy reviewer chuckdawg1999 offers us a look at one of the later Constructbots, and part of the Thrilling 30th thirty collector's figures: the mighty Predaking himself! Does it pass the test, or get slain in its attempts to replace its Beast Fire and Voyager incarnations? Watch the video below to find out.
chuckdawg1999 wrote:At first I was hoping this would be a new direction for the Constructbots line but ended up being more of what we've come to expect. Although it has a new transformation, at the core it's the same figure as any other Constructbot. I do like the look and think this is better than some Predakings we've gotten I can only recommend it if you find it at retail.
Popular toy reviewer peaugh has now uploaded reviews for Transformers Generations 30th Anniversary Deluxe Goldfire and Dreadwing. These two are redeco/remolds of the previously released IDW style Bumblebee and Megatron respectively. Check out the reviews embedded below.
We just can't keep them down! After yesterday's news with the galleries of in-hand images, we have now been alerted that YouTube reviewer peaugh has posted videos of Generations Skids and Waspinator. Will Skids' shoulder issues be raised? Will Waspinator be able to stand without falling to pieces? Check the videos out below, and leave a comment in in the Energon Pub discussion!
Here's a video review many of you have been waiting for, the highly anticipated Transformers Generations 30th Anniversary Voyager Class Rhinox! Reviewer Pax Cybertron has managed to snag an early release and uploaded a review to YouTube, which we've embedded below for easy viewing. Rhinox will joint Doubledealer, a redeco/remold, of previously released Generations Voyager Blitzwing mold. Enjoy the review found below.
With Cybertron reborn, the Dinobots have made their way to the surface. But now, the war has returned and the Dinobots are caught in the maelstrom. With old allies joining the battle, can the Dinobots take back Cybertron?
We've seen this before..
One issue left till the end of the series, and Mike Johnson has finally upped his writing game. Following directly from Mairghread's Scott arc from the previous two issues, we step right in where we left, with the Dinobots, Chromia and the other survivors back on the surface.. waiting for something to happen, apparently.
We get a much better look at Chromia and some of the other secondary characters, like Zoom, Firestar and the background nameless ones we encountered in the series so far. There isn't that much in terms of actual characterisation, but we do get some nice shots (both artistically and personality-wise) of the minor cast.
Decisive Chromia takes charge
Johnson has a much better sense of dialogue and narration in this issue, uses captions very sparely and gives some good directions for the story to tie up with the events of Prime: Beast Hunters and Predacons Rising. We might even see something bigger by the next issue, I suspect.
It's nice to finally see the series gain proper speed, but it's disappointing that it's so late in the game, with only one issue left before its end. It would've been nice to span a bit more around the cast, including more page-time for Chromia, Firestar, Zoom and even Blackout. And I'm not sure if this is Guzman on editing or Johnson on writing, but there's a glaring mistype on the final page that made my English grad self wince.
Agustin Padilla works alone this time, and still manages to keep his style a lot cleaner that earlier issues. There are some strange proportion issue later on in the comic, mostly to due with character's facial expressions, as has happened previously with Padilla's linework. But overall, I have very little to complain about. Some great panel-work as well, especially with the more action-packed scenes.
A dark tone, you say?
Priscilla Tramontano is still on colours, and she really does play around with the tonal contrasts. The colouring really suits the style of the story, and you still get a much lighter look when the surface of the planet is concerned (stars! skies!). Tom B. Long seems to have toned down the lettering in recent issues, but it makes a comeback in this one, with some excellently executed speechbubble sounds.
SHKOWs, SHKOWs everywhere
What could have been a very hard to make out issue in terms of dynamic panels, action scenes, fights and a lot of bot bashing actually turned out to be fairly clear to follow, with clean cut shapes where needed and good colouring assist, though there are some dips in the work this time round.
Thoughts Spoilerish ahead
A much better blend of action and narration, possibly also due to Johnson not using the caption monologue as much. The issue is still not as engaging as the series started out to be, but it's definitely building up quite a bit to its end, next month, and fans of the animated series will enjoy some plot points in this one.
The high number of fight scenes may have made the comic hard to follow, had the artistic team not done such a good job between well-defined linework and colours, separating background and foreground nicely. Really looking forward to the next, though sad it has finally gained momentum so close to its end.
THE END OF EVERYTHING! SHOCKWAVE makes a move millions of years in the planning—an ultimate plan to remake Cybertron and destroy both the Autobots and Decepticons! Bringing together the casts of the hit MORE THAN MEETS THE EYE and ROBOTS IN DISGUISE for the first time in two years!
It begins, again. After endless teasing, the two wordsmiths get together and concoct their galactic goulash. For the first time since Death of Optimus Prime, John Barber and James Robert reunite to set the stage to their Dark Cybertron event, crossing over both RID and MTMTE titles - and a lot more.
The 'Previously' section was a nice touch, I admit, re-using panels from previous issues spanning the two series up to now, and helping to bring readers back up to speed after the various character-focused RID stories slowing the pace. The 'Prologue', seen previously, is also still really good, though it messes up some previously established continuity.
He's almost swoon-worthy..
There is story advancement of course, but a lot of it almost gets lost in gathering the plotlines and making sure everything lines up together. Starscream is pretty glorious/fabulous, but doesn't do much; Optimus Prime Orion Pax keeps being misnamed and is troubled with recapping and exposition, and feels a little out place.
I'll just sit here and brood, sagely
As a set-up issue, it does what it has to. The expanded cast are all a bit corollary, and feel as though they're dragged in to remind us they're all involved. Some of the dialogue seems a little off, too, but I'm definitely curious to see were all this leads to - especially thanks to the final four pages.
The artwork is superb. From Brendan Cahill's Prologue, to cameos by Livio Ramondelli and Andrew Griffith in Previously, Phil Jimenez' layouts are gorgeously finished off by Griffith's own approach, and the result is stunning. Plus, there are plenty of splash pages and double-page spreads for everyone's eyes to be dazzled.
I mean, come on!
Add the colours to the already amazing mixture, and sparks fly. JP Bove's skills shine with Cahill's style in the Prologue, and Josh Perez does some ridiculously splendid stuff on the interiors - watch out for the multiple skies. Tom B. Long on lettering delivers once more, playing with some established techniques used in both MTMTE and Monstrosity.
Something BIG is coming
The final effect is reminds me of a Peter Jackson or James Cameron film, with stunning visuals, dazzling effects, wide-sweeping mouth-watering eye-candy. Nice to see Jimenez on some Cybertronian work, and Griffith and Perez really do help his style. It's a gorgeous book, if a little thin on story.
Thoughts Spoilerish ahead
As the first issue, preparing everything that's to come (including the actual not-so-subtle hints in the book) it's not bad - but it's not amazing either. It's a decent read, bringing back some plotlines that were almost abandoned, and merging them more or less successfully. Definitely want to read more, but mostly because of what this issue lacked in.
Oh, the dialogue
On the other hand, I loved the multiple hands working on the artwork, from pencils to colours via finishes and letters. There are some amazing splash pages and spreads, and I enjoyed the differences between the prologue and the main story. Here's to the beginning of a long, dark winter - let's hope it picks up from here.
. ½ out of
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