Comics and entertainment news website Comic Book Resources also wanted a piece of the Tom Scioli/John Barber pie, and add themselves to the list of interviews about the upcoming IDW Publishing Transformers vs. G.I. Joe series, set to debut in May, with Free Comic Book Day. Read on below for some snippets and more preview pages from the free issue, and head here for the whole interview.
CBR News: John and Tom, aside from the obvious implications of the title, what exactly is "Transformers vs. G.I. Joe" all about?
Tom Scioli: We're pretty close to figuring that out ourselves. So far it looks like each issue is going to be a complete "Transformers vs. G.I. Joe" epic that, when taken together, will add up to a multi-chapter mega epic. We've got a really good plot going. Figuring out the tone is the next big challenge. How serious, how funny, how topical.
I did a couple of passes, color thumbnail comics in a style similar to [Scioli's creator-owned series] "Satan's Soldier." In those tests, the tone ended up being in the neighborhood of [Scioli's other creator-owned series] "American Barbarian" and "Satan's Soldier." John is bringing a 21st century version of Classic '60s Marvel tone. I think we'll really nail it down when we find a tone that isn't "AmBarb," isn't '60s Marvel, isn't Alan Moore, isn't Frank Miller, but a tone that is "Transformers vs. G.I. Joe" -- a tone that is unique and specific to the demands of this particular story.
What's it about? Change or die. It's about a big universe where people build crazy, wild, awesome things and use them to kill each other. I'd like to shepherd the characters to a place where they don't want to kill each other anymore, but I don't know if they'll ever get there or not.
So far, the script for this first issue, which we're close to finishing, is the best thing I've ever worked on. I've spent more hours per page on this than anything I've done before, and the results are better than I could've imagined.
John Barber: Yeah, what Tom said. I came into this with a certain idea of where we were heading, and we've wound up somewhere way, way, way better.
The basic idea of the series is that the G.I. Joe team has been fighting COBRA for some time, but just when they think they've defeated their foe, everything blows up to the next level -- and the Cybertronians arrive.
We'll see the origins of our heroes; we'll see first meetings and secret pasts. This is the ground floor of an astounding new reality, here.
Tom, your style is very cosmic and Kirby-esque in nature, so is it safe to assume "Transformers vs. G.I. Joe" will be on a grand, cosmic scale?
Scioli: "Transformers" is a grand, cosmic thing to begin with. "G.I. Joe" is a heightened, sci-fi, 20 minutes into the future version of military adventure. Today's military technology is sci-fi by any reasonable definition, so it does kind of push things in that direction.
Early drafts were extremely serious, hard sci-fi, with absurdist touches and pitch black dark humor. John's brought a little more of a sense of adventure and fun to it. We're folding all of that stuff together and hammering it into what feels like a real, breathing universe from which we can pluck any story we need.
Barber: I think it's fair to say "grand and cosmic" yeah -- maybe "expanding" is another good word.
Merging two major properties like these is something IDW is clearly not taking lightly. How did this idea get started, and how long has it been in development?
Scioli: Months, it seems. When John first floated the idea, I started getting the wheels turning, even before it was confirmed as a thing. I can't help it. I used to fight that urge. Don't work on that, there's no point. I decided not to fight it. If your imagination goes somewhere you'd rather it not, don't fight it, let it happen and see where it goes. So I didn't fight it.
To make this as good as it needs to be, I couldn't wait to get the final okay before I start working. Doing this story one issue at a time just wasn't going to work, so even though I wouldn't advise working on a job you don't yet have, I don't think I'd have gotten the results I wanted if I figured the story out in issue-long chunks, one bit at a time. I knew from past experience, for best results I had to envision what I wanted my entire run to be and then figure out the story as a whole, before I even started work on Issue #1. It's foolishness, but the kind of foolishness you need to create great art.
Barber: At IDW, we'd been interested in doing a "Transformers"/"G.I. Joe" crossover series for a while, but it had to be the right thing. It had to be something really unique and interesting, not just some sort of a cash-grab. 2014 is the 30th Anniversary of "Transformers" and the 50th Anniversary of the original "G.I. Joe" line, so it seemed like we had to do something. But we've got existing comics universes that are pretty clearly not set in the same world. We were trying to figure out what would work and not just feel, well, inessential.
Then Tom emailed in out of the blue, and I'm a big fan of Tom. We started talking about another thing, about Tom doing a cover for another series -- and one day I just thought of Tom doing "Transformers" and "G.I. Joe." So I emailed him, and he was interested -- and I kinda inserted myself into the proceedings as co-writer, which is me kinda staying out of the way and then trying to steal the glory later
Paramount has just released their first Transformers: Age of Extinction IMAX poster! The poster features Lockdown with what we assume is his ship in the background, as seen in the previous teaser trailer. According to MTV UK the ship is called the Nightship.
Transformers: Age of Extinction staring Mark Wahlberg, Nicola Peltz, Jack Reynor, Kelsey Grammer, Stanley Tucci, T.J. Miller, Titus Welliver, Li Bingbing, Peter Cullen, and more hits theaters everywhere on June 27th! Check out the new IMAX poster below:
Site sponsor Robotkingdom has provided us with some nice in-hand images of the Asian market exclusive Specialist: Autobots three-pack. This set features reissues of Classics Mirage, Universe 2.0 Ironhide, and Universe 2.0 Hound with Ravage, all of which sport shiny new metallic paint jobs. Click here to visit Robotkingdom's pre-order page.
Shout! Factory has uploaded a new Transformers: Rescue Bots music video to promote their soon to be released Transformers: Rescue Bots Heroes on the Scene DVD. The DVD is scheduled to release on March 18th, click here to pre-order.
Check it out embedded below:
Join Chase, Heatwave, Blades and Boulder—the Autobots' best rescue team—for five adventure-filled episodes! Along with their human friends, the Burns family, the Rescue Bots go undercover to protect the quiet, little town of Griffin Rock from danger!
Welcome to the latest edition of the Seibertron.com Twincast / Podcast! This episode features your host and idol of millions, Counterpunch, along with regular cast Rotorstorm, Scotty P, Seibertron, and even a little bit of Jon 3.0 sandwiched in the middle.
Episode 88 "Marky Mark and the Transformers Bunch" is available directly and in our RSS Feed and should appear on iTunes within 24 to 48 hours of this news post.
The full blown flag wavin', dino slashin', Wahlberg actin' Age of Extinction trailer has hit the airwaves. While we break it down for America, follow along with the excellent gallery of still images right here on Seibertron.com
The Comics department didn't get all of the Livio Ramondelli fun - he stopped by the Twincast as well! We ask the questions everyone always wanted to ask, and have a ton of fun along the way. After you listen, be sure to check out Livio's Website and Deviantart Page for all the latest. Plus, post any questions you might have for Livio right here in this topic, and be sure to check out Va'als written interview with Livio as well.
Just in time to not be relevant, we discuss the Masterpiece Bumblebee silhouette and ponder what the final product might look like. We accidentally guessed a few features correctly, it's pretty rad.
Straight from the butt butt, Brawn and Starscream have arrived to confuse our shelves once again. Will the Twincast be flying high with these releases, or having them grounded?
Grimlocks everywhere! Hope you're ready for a whole bunch of Dinobots this summer, as we get to see one of the first exclusive releases for the Age of Extinction toyline in the Grimlock Evolution 2-Pack.
Got a question for the Twincast? We take all of them, we just don't take them all seriously! Leave a question in the Ask the Twincast thread and, if it makes the cut, it may get read and answered on the show.
Don't forget, the show only gets better if you tell us how. Drop us a review on iTunes and be sure to tell us what you love, what you hate, and what you want to hear!
TOGETHER AT LAST! The crew of the Lost Light and the survivors of CYERTRON get a brief moment of calm as they take stock of who’s survived DARK CYBERTRON this far. But things get worse—the final fate of the DEAD UNIVERSE reveals a nightmarish link to the greatest threat the universe has ever faced!
Are we ready for this? I think not. We have all the casts merging, clashing, bashing and - just hanging. Because why not. Everything in Dark Cybertron seems to have been leading up to this particular issue, or at least this issue as a means of resolution for the major plot points. Does it deliver is the question here, really. Well, read on.
..go on, tell us MOAR
We get some excellent dialogue and laundry hanging with, in no particular order, Megatron, Arcee, Prowl, Windblade, Chromedome, Prowl, Ultra Magnus, Ratchet, Brainstorm and Prowl. In fact, there are a lot of questions that are starting to get a glimpse of a potential answer. And Prowl gets into a lot of discussions, with a lot of other characters, about everything he's done since the Death of Optimus Prime.
Except the Greenicons, they like him
What felt a bit odd was the pacing of all that is going on against the backdrop, between some very laid-back moments - excellent for characters to show their natures - and some more tense ones - see above. But a lot of the scenes are taking place during one, long speech by Shockwave, given to Galvatron. It's exposition. But it's long-needed, long-wanted exposition. And most importantly, it's answers.
Feels as much here, too
Do we get all the answers? No. But we do get some answers, and an exceptionally good set-up for the next big two issues coming up. We look more into Megatron, Arcee, Chromedome, Windblade, Prowl, *especially* Prowl and Shockwave. What didn't work amazingly, for me at least, was the discordant pacing. A lot of things are happening at the same time, and the time is very diluted between the things happening.
While there is still a double art team, with Livio still smoking up the Dead Universe happenings, Alex Milne makes his return on part of the issue - and things are looking very, very good. Brendan Cahill also does an exceptional job on the his pages of the issue (especially with the panelwork!), and Brian Shearer's inks top it all off magnificently, paving the way for the colour magic.
Yes, this page again. Because.
We saw Josh Perez' work in the making with the double page spread the other day, but the rest of the issue is just as beautiful. Ramondelli also gives a really nice touch to the colouring hues in his sections of the book, with a lighter palette as we approach the end of the darkness.. or do we?
Do I need to say anything else?
Tom B. Long is back on letters, and even though the work in this one is subtle, it works witha everything else that is going on. Special mentions go to the three absolutely stunning covers, A by Casey Coller and Joana Lafuente, B by Phil Jimenez and Romulo Fajardo Jr, and the incentive Milne and Perez - in the thumbnail!
Thoughts Spoilerish ahead
So, the question was: does it deliver? Yes. Yes it does. Action, lack thereof, plot, developments, characters, dialogue and most especially artistic endeavours all conflate into one giant, ominous, cyclopic purple instance - and yet the actual storm has yet to really hit. I'm not sure the next chapter will leave us intact, at this point.
Want to find out what Shockwave's actually been up to? Want to see what Megatron thinks of himself and Cybertron? Hear what the Dead Universe bots are going on about? Actually get some answers? Read this issue. It's only-just-not perfect, but you will read this issue. Go on. We'll be here. Waiting.
We are proud to present the newest Seibertron.com galleries: The Loyal Subjects Transformers! These charming little vinyl figures are fully licensed products, produced by The Loyal Subjects. These chibified figures sport very accurate G1 heads and designs, some even featuring electronics and voice clips! They're poseable, too! (Electronics and sound clips will be featured in wave 2, which we reported on here.)
Without further ado, on to the main event. Click on any of the pictures below to be taken to the galleries where you can fully enjoy them. When you're done, come on back to the forums and share your thoughts with us!
Shanghai GM has revealed a new Chevrolet Trax Transformer from the upcoming Transformers: Age of Extinction. The full article, which is in Chinese, can be found by clicking here. If the character will actually be featured in the film or if this is just a marketing tie-in remains to be seen. However, Seibertron.com member mirageandjazz1197 has pointed out that several Chevy Trax in various colors were spotted with Galvatron back during the filming. We've mirrored the images below:
Video from the early filming courtesy of YouTube user aaaaaaacvf:
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