'Decepticons, Rise Up!' Transformers Ongoing #7 Reviewed

Transformers News: 'Decepticons, Rise Up!' Transformers Ongoing #7 Reviewed

Tuesday, May 25th, 2010 1:12PM CDT

Categories: Comic Book News, Reviews
Posted by: Tigertrack   Views: 67,051

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“Decepticons, we’re under attack! Scramble!”

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And so we have the next STORY arc in Transformers Ongoing:

Decepticons are the main focus of issue number 7. Not the Earth-bound, homeless guys that were just mostly wiped out and captured last issue by the Skywatch and Autobot team up, no, this is the Decepticon group that fled to space at the end of ‘All Hail Megatron’.

Starscream, Bombshell, and Megatron form the bulk of who this book is about. Told from Megatron’s point of view, he is somehow omnisciently observing and narrating what is going on with his Decepticons while he is recovering/resting/imprisoned in some liquid (like bacta from Star Wars, I think). A blast to the head, again, from way back in AHM’s final episode put him in his current state. Where Megatron is contained is a mystery to us at this time, but based on statement’s made earlier in the issue by Spike’s father, it is alluded to that perhaps Megatron may be hidden deep in a Skywatch research bunker (sound familiar...like the ’07 movie?).

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General Witwicky to Major Witwicky:
”What do you think happens to your happy alliance when they see what has gone on in Section 82? You were personally involved in that.”


But no, if you read carefully, the excerpt explaining ‘the story to this point’ on the inside cover, we find out it is Soundwave who is diligently working to repair and recoup Megatron at the Decepticons’ new base. This does explain how to some degree Megatron knows details about the troops here, although how he is able to function to this degree, but not be able to command kind of causes an itch in my brain.

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Speaking of the troops, the Decepticons are gathering on an asteroid (think Charr in Season 3 of G1), fighting for survival against one another for energy, as more and more refugees from the war make their way to where the AHM cons fled to.

A couple of things:

There are a multitude of comparisons one can start making between the beginning of this arc, and the previous arc. Told from the leader’s point of view mainly, we have Optimus Prime struggling with how to lead his team when they no longer needed to be soldiers anymore in the first arc, and now we have Megatron reflecting on his faction’s status, and how his leadership is needed to right the Decepticons now, more than ever, and organize the soldiers for the next thing. Megatron as the narrator of this issue, reflects on his leadership style and Optimus Prime’s, how one shall fail, and one shall be triumphant (guess which is which).

It’s interesting to juxtapose the Autobot and the Decepticon soldiers at this point, as well. In the first arc, we saw how the Autobots struggled with their leader surrendering, and choosing and following new leadership. While there were questions of who should lead next and how, the Autobots for the most part kept civil with each other making the choice to be proactive (Hot Rod), or reactive (Bumblebee). Now that the Autobots are all back together under Bumblebee, they may feel less distress, and more organized. No longer do they have to worry about hunting their own to be allowed some semblance of freedom, or allying with former millenium long enemies. No longer do they have to worry about being hunted by their own faction brothers, or by the humans. Where this Skywatch and Autobot alliance takes us will be interesting, but the Autobots are in a much better position than previously. Well done Optimus, just as planned...

However, on the flipside, we have the actual losers of the war that happened during AHM, the Decepticons. They don’t quite handle being without their leader, Megatron, as peacefully as the Autobots did.

The Decepticons are being newly lead by Starscream, who believes the Autobot matrix has chosen him to be the new leader of the Decepticons. He struggles with maintaining his power, how to control the Decepticon troops, and of course, his next step--very similar to Bumblebee’s trials as Autobot leader at the beginning of his tenure.

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The Decepticon front liners are having problems of their own. Similar in ways to the Autobot rank and file situation, the cons hunt one another for energon, as Razorclaw looks on proudly, not for the sake of protecting themselves from a third party threat like the humans, as the Autobots ‘had’ to, but to self-govern, and punish the weak, or the rule breakers. Bombshell states to Starscream that this works well, this culling of the herd to make it so only the strongest survive, a statement one would never hear coming out of any Autobot’s mouth--except maybe Grimlock.

Bombshell to Starscream:
”No that problem has sorted itself out, as I thought it would. The population reached a critical level, and now it’s self-governing through cannibalism. Resources will remain stable now, recycling back into the system.


Nice to hear the Decepticons are so ‘green’. Yes, you read that correctly, cannibalism.
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Starscream:
”Cannibalism is not an acceptable solution, I need functioning soldiers!”


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The Decepticons have major issues. Their ‘generals’ (Shockwave, Soundwave...) are doing their own things, supporting their faction in more behind the scenes ways. The Decepticon warriors are destroying each other, and they seem to have no leadership that they care to recognize, or that can organize them.

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Is Galvatron coming soon?



There is hardly an Autobot in this issue, although Optimus does meet General Witwicky, to try to help Spike to further his position that the Autobots are willing to help, and are peaceful.

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The human element is still a main factor in Ongoing as the Witwicky’s argue over whether the Skywatch and Autobot alliance is beneficial, and whether the higher level government officials have reasons to accept it.

Spike gives the Autobots props (finally), having outreasoned his father and gaining his support:

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ART:

Don Fig is off for the next few issues, and E.J. Su (Spotlight Prowl) has taken over. I was interested in EJ’s art when it so contrasted Don’s Ongoing style when we saw it in Spotlight Prowl. EJ’s got a new look to his ‘stuff’, as said before basing things more on Classics, or classical versions of toys, rather than Don’s new designs, or his own designs as we saw him do in INFILTRATION.

While it is yet another interesting juxtaposition, I have an issue I would like to bring up.

Why the new styles by Don and now EJ? Why are they so different? It’s like night and day, one super-detailed and smooth, another very linear, boxy, and much less detailed.

I never believe my opinion is better than anyone else’s, but I also wonder why are there all of these, for lack of a better term, ‘shadows’ on the characters that look like camouflage? I’m not sure if it’s the penciler or the colorist who put them in, but I am [bold]NOT[/bold] a fan of what they do to the characters’ looks. I think it is meant to be shine vs. dull, but it seems way too...contrived? Unnatural? I think that perhaps a more realistic use of shadow, or a texture could show this with much more effectiveness.



Overall, this looks like an interesting new start for the next story arc. Written similarly so that we see relationships between the Decepticon’s situation, and the Autobot’s situation, we are taking the next step. Where is it going? Will the Autobots ever become confident, and decisive? Will the Decepticons recover and find their way back to Earth, or Cybertron, and start the war anew? Will the pace of stories pick up quicker than the last arc, or are we in for the same lengthy slow build with the Decepticons that we had in the first arc with the Autobots? If we have a Starscream mini, we may be in for the same ride...

Check out the five page preview, and pick up your issue tomorrow, if you are so inclined.

LAST NOTE: Denton Tipton says his goodbyes to Transformers comic editing in the letter's page at the end.
Credit(s): IDW Publishing
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Re: 'Decepticons, Rise Up!' Transformers Ongoing #7 Reviewed (1078539)
Posted by The Legend on May 25th, 2010 @ 2:17pm CDT
G2 Starscream?
Re: 'Decepticons, Rise Up!' Transformers Ongoing #7 Reviewed (1078563)
Posted by paul053 on May 25th, 2010 @ 3:28pm CDT
tigertracks 24 wrote:I never believe my opinion is better than anyone else’s, but I also wonder why are there all of these, for lack of a better term, ‘shadows’ on the characters that look like camouflage? I’m not sure if it’s the penciler or the colorist who put them in, but I am NOT a fan of what they do to the characters’ looks. I think it is meant to be shine vs. dull, but it seems way too...contrived? Unnatural? I think that perhaps a more realistic use of shadow, or a texture could show this with much more effectiveness.


Totally agree. It does look like camouflage. Even if they remove the pencil/border line, it will still look like camouflage and it makes the characters look dirty, too. Totally not a good way to represent 'shadows' by this way since shadows don't go on spots like that unless you are standing beneath a tree.
Re: 'Decepticons, Rise Up!' Transformers Ongoing #7 Reviewed (1078564)
Posted by DTR69 on May 25th, 2010 @ 3:29pm CDT
Is that acid storm, sitting with what appears to be sunstorm, Thing is acidstorm is camoflagued. That has to be the pencilist as the shadows have drawn in outlines, a colourist would have to have some balls to shade in like that then add his own pencil lines to excentuate them, unless they have had some discussion on the matter. If anything I think the drawn in lines around the shading confuses the matter, if it is shading just the change in shade is enough, keeping it suble is the key, the lines suggest an actual change in colour rather than change due to lighting. I thought the given rules were black lines represent physical edges and anything within them are guverned by light and colour, so outlining them gives them some actual physical presence. Would a flag have black lines where the colour changes, or would i be a straight change as the surface is flat and it is a cuntinuation of surface. So the style of shading and the way it has been tackled are both up for question.

I think the people who are slating Don's art should be a little more specific. The art is great artwork, and he is very talented, and to put lesser art above it is not right. Yes you are entitled to hate it and feelthat it does not represent the characters in question. He has tried to take g1 back to the drawing board, and he has acheived that. To some he has drawn some doggy dodo, but he has drawn it very well. This new artwork has again tried to show transformers in a different light, and in a different light they have done, but not very well. You are all entitled to like this more, but to say this is some how superior artwork to Don's is a mistake. It is much truer to the G1 style we are used to, but it's a poor attempt.

I think to experiment is kool, but it's almost as if they are using Transformers G1 ongoing as a guinea pig. This artwork should have never got released on 2 accounts. Don't artwork is so radically different that it's not just a style change, the actual form has been revamped. The new artwork should take on the new form but in there own style. It's like watching batman the movie, and having batman in the new black rubbery sculpted suit, then in batman 2 having him run around in grey spandex.

Why did Don change the style of transformer if it wasn't going to be an ongoing look. Any artist working on this series should be drawing the new stye of transformer, in there own drawing style, if they alter the look slightly, thats up to them, but to change the style of transformer altogether is rediculous. Is the next artist gonns draw them all as armada characters. WHere's the consistency?
Re: 'Decepticons, Rise Up!' Transformers Ongoing #7 Reviewed (1078590)
Posted by MYoung23 on May 25th, 2010 @ 4:38pm CDT


How did they forget that Bumblebee was upgraded?
Re: 'Decepticons, Rise Up!' Transformers Ongoing #7 Reviewed (1078668)
Posted by Darth Bombshell on May 25th, 2010 @ 9:04pm CDT
Pop quiz, folks: what do Del Rey/Lucas Books and IDW have in common?

Answer: Both have put out products this week that prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that they don't give a flying fignut about their respective fanbases.
Re: 'Decepticons, Rise Up!' Transformers Ongoing #7 Reviewed (1078686)
Posted by Darclipto on May 25th, 2010 @ 9:51pm CDT
Wow... that art work is god awful. :SICK:

That's what people get though. They pissed and moaned about Don's and so they crapped this out.
Re: 'Decepticons, Rise Up!' Transformers Ongoing #7 Reviewed (1078699)
Posted by YoImLegend on May 25th, 2010 @ 10:34pm CDT
This style was spot-on perfect for spotlight: prowl. My gut says that it's not going to work for the main series, but I guess I'll have to wait until tomorrow to make a true stand on it.

I dunno... part of me wants to yell out "HELP US GUIDO!" but the other part is just telling me to pipe down and give it a chance.
Re: 'Decepticons, Rise Up!' Transformers Ongoing #7 Reviewed (1078712)
Posted by lowman_x on May 26th, 2010 @ 12:24am CDT
Spoke to EJ and he said that this was the only issue he was doing so for everyone who is all "BLEURGH!" about the art, you can rest easy.

I'm liking the style (but the chopping and changing of art styles is a bit off-putting - pick one and stick with it IDW!) and I find EJ's movements and characterisations of the characters easier on the eye than Don's mind-blowing details and Guido's Sunbow style. EJ eludes to details and draws his TFs like "real" robots with pneumatic hosing and joints and stuff with just enough attention to those robotic details without taking away from the character (though the shadow/damage thing seems a little overdone here compared to Spotlight: Prowl). Don's is too complicated for my tastes for the TFs (though I do think it's awesomely done) and I find Guido's too simplistic.

Mind you, this is just my opinion and opinions are like a-holes... everyone has one and sometimes they're sh*tty. :P
Re: 'Decepticons, Rise Up!' Transformers Ongoing #7 Reviewed (1078729)
Posted by DTR69 on May 26th, 2010 @ 3:01am CDT
MatchTheyIgnite wrote:This style was spot-on perfect for spotlight: prowl. My gut says that it's not going to work for the main series, but I guess I'll have to wait until tomorrow to make a true stand on it.

I dunno... part of me wants to yell out "HELP US GUIDO!" but the other part is just telling me to pipe down and give it a chance.


In spotlight prowl the shaded forms were more fluid, and I think th ecolourist has a bit to blame here as the conrasting coloursused are too much, plus the black edges, it should just be light grey and then a slightly liughter grey, not dark grey then light grey plus a black border. `And as the shapes use so much straight lines, you could be forgiven they are objects.

There is an almost cubist look to the whole thing, are me gonna see it go all twisty and curvy but with straight lines, a side profile with the whole face showing but with the other eye floating in mid air.

The wh0ole thing should of been proofed. We are being treated like guinea pigs.
Re: 'Decepticons, Rise Up!' Transformers Ongoing #7 Reviewed (1078780)
Posted by Tigertrack on May 26th, 2010 @ 7:12am CDT
As I said about Prowl and was confirmed on TFW's thread, EJ is going for a Mike Mignola (Hellboy) style. I just don't think it worked here.

EJ is not the artist for #8 though. Shame it's human heavy, and I think this style fits quite well with his human related story parts.
Re: 'Decepticons, Rise Up!' Transformers Ongoing #7 Reviewed (1078841)
Posted by Vectorshot on May 26th, 2010 @ 9:38am CDT
I think that the main reason they changed artist at the beginning of this series was because MOST of the characters within this issue were not subject to Don's new design ideas. I would even dare to bet that when Don get's back on board as far as pencils he will have made some changes to his style. I think that the first G1 ongoing story was used as a testing ground for his new art style.
Re: 'Decepticons, Rise Up!' Transformers Ongoing #7 Reviewed (1078853)
Posted by Prime Evil on May 26th, 2010 @ 9:55am CDT
Man, all this gripe about artistic styles. I can tell A LOT of you weren't around in the early 90's when artist styles were NOT part of a house style. Sad that people can't appreciate different looks. I did NOT like Don's stuff, but never did I ever say he should change. I remember reading the X-Men's Xtinction Agenda and we had Jim Lee, Rob Liefeld, and Jon Bogdanove. The three artist could not be more different. And I read it for the STORY. I love Jim's work, getting used to Rob's and wasn't a fan of Jon's, but I still read it and loved the story.

I say to EJ, keep on doing what you're doing. It's so much easier for people to critic then do themselves. I know my friends in high school changed styles often due to the fact that they either got bored with a look or just wanted to progress their style.
Re: 'Decepticons, Rise Up!' Transformers Ongoing #7 Reviewed (1078861)
Posted by Tigertrack on May 26th, 2010 @ 10:01am CDT
Prime Evil wrote:Man, all this gripe about artistic styles. I can tell A LOT of you weren't around in the early 90's when artist styles were NOT part of a house style. Sad that people can't appreciate different looks. I did NOT like Don's stuff, but never did I ever say he should change. I remember reading the X-Men's Xtinction Agenda and we had Jim Lee, Rob Liefeld, and Jon Bogdanove. The three artist could not be more different. And I read it for the STORY. I love Jim's work, getting used to Rob's and wasn't a fan of Jon's, but I still read it and loved the story.

I say to EJ, keep on doing what you're doing. It's so much easier for people to critic then do themselves. I know my friends in high school changed styles often due to the fact that they either got bored with a look or just wanted to progress their style.


Indeed, but the characters did not change their overall look as much as these did.

I never said he needed to change, I just would like to know why they are making some of the choices they are.

If the story were really good, then we could probably forget the art, but it's not.

Who wrote the X-Men stuff? Claremont, or someone else, I can't remember.
Re: 'Decepticons, Rise Up!' Transformers Ongoing #7 Reviewed (1078862)
Posted by The Legend on May 26th, 2010 @ 10:06am CDT
lowman_x wrote:(but the chopping and changing of art styles is a bit off-putting - pick one and stick with it IDW!)


I like to see a change in art often. I'd be happy for a new artist to take over every 3-4 issues now we have an ongoing.
Re: 'Decepticons, Rise Up!' Transformers Ongoing #7 Reviewed (1078866)
Posted by Prime Evil on May 26th, 2010 @ 10:09am CDT
tigertracks 24 wrote:
Indeed, but the characters did not change their overall look as much as these did.

I never said he needed to change, I just would like to know why they are making some of the choices they are.

If the story were really good, then we could probably forget the art, but it's not.

Who wrote the X-Men stuff? Claremont, or someone else, I can't remember.


I understand the whole BB thing. He went from a VW to a Camaro and back to VW again. Yeah, that's wrong and up to the editors to let the artist know crap like that.

I also do have the slight problem about the cerebro shells. I haven't read the issue yet, but apparently Bombshell is just now creating them? Is this correct? If so, then the editors need to go read IDW Blaster Spotlight that was out less then 2 years ago. C'mon people. It's not like you have 10+ years history going on.

And yeup, it was Claremont. During his gazillion year X-Men run. LOL!!
Re: 'Decepticons, Rise Up!' Transformers Ongoing #7 Reviewed (1078867)
Posted by Tigertrack on May 26th, 2010 @ 10:11am CDT
The Legend wrote:
lowman_x wrote:(but the chopping and changing of art styles is a bit off-putting - pick one and stick with it IDW!)


I like to see a change in art often. I'd be happy for a new artist to take over every 3-4 issues now we have an ongoing.


The art's cool, but it does make it hard to get 'used to' a series. Change is fine, but I need reasoning for camouflage looking coloring. It just does not look right, as dirt or shadows.

Sure it could be trying to make them look like they are diseased, or in poverty, in hard times or what not, but I'm not sure it works for robots, and with these color choices.

Small gripe.

Big gripe, the next issue is all about Spike...more humans taking over Transformers. :P
Re: 'Decepticons, Rise Up!' Transformers Ongoing #7 Reviewed (1078868)
Posted by Prime Evil on May 26th, 2010 @ 10:12am CDT
The Legend wrote:
lowman_x wrote:(but the chopping and changing of art styles is a bit off-putting - pick one and stick with it IDW!)


I like to see a change in art often. I'd be happy for a new artist to take over every 3-4 issues now we have an ongoing.


I like the change in artist as well, probably not as often as you. :) But for like every 7-10 issues would work for me. But I'm not against 6 issues though.
Re: 'Decepticons, Rise Up!' Transformers Ongoing #7 Reviewed (1078870)
Posted by Prime Evil on May 26th, 2010 @ 10:15am CDT
tigertracks 24 wrote:
Big gripe, the next issue is all about Spike...more humans taking over Transformers. :P


NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!! :cry:
Re: 'Decepticons, Rise Up!' Transformers Ongoing #7 Reviewed (1078871)
Posted by Tigertrack on May 26th, 2010 @ 10:22am CDT
Prime Evil wrote:
tigertracks 24 wrote:
Indeed, but the characters did not change their overall look as much as these did.

I never said he needed to change, I just would like to know why they are making some of the choices they are.

If the story were really good, then we could probably forget the art, but it's not.

Who wrote the X-Men stuff? Claremont, or someone else, I can't remember.


I understand the whole BB thing. He went from a VW to a Camaro and back to VW again. Yeah, that's wrong and up to the editors to let the artist know crap like that.

I also do have the slight problem about the cerebro shells. I haven't read the issue yet, but apparently Bombshell is just now creating them? Is this correct? If so, then the editors need to go read IDW Blaster Spotlight that was out less then 2 years ago. C'mon people. It's not like you have 10+ years history going on.

And yeup, it was Claremont. During his gazillion year X-Men run. LOL!!



Yeah Starscream gets angry at Bombshell because he is 'sidetracked' from answering their energy needs by creating these cerebro control devices, which are HUGE, and look like Bombshell's alt mode. One might suppose that he is refining the ones that he used in Spotlight Blaster, I suppose.

Re: 'Decepticons, Rise Up!' Transformers Ongoing #7 Reviewed (1078874)
Posted by Prime Evil on May 26th, 2010 @ 10:34am CDT
Well, I'm still looking forward to this issue as it's Decepticon centric. It's just the lil details of continuity that continue to distract from the overall story telling. I know for me at least, the art is not going to be a problem. I just wish I knew what the heck is up with the TF editor over there at IDW.

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