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IDW Transformers: Robots in Disguise #31 (Dawn of the Autobots) Review

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Robots in Disguise #31 (Dawn of the Autobots) Review

Tuesday, July 29th, 2014 5:37PM CDT

Categories: Comic Book News, Reviews, Site Articles
Posted by: Va'al   Views: 25,430

Topic Options: View Discussion · Sign in or Join to reply

Ding-dong
(Spoiler free-ish)



Synopsis
MINDBOMB! The humans have access to a CYBERTRONIAN mind—but whose is it—and why do they want it? OPTIMUS PRIME and GALVATRON race for answers, as JAZZ faces the consequences of his last trip to Earth.

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Robots in Disguise #31 (Dawn of the Autobots) Review
*That* thing


Story

We're on Earth again, still, once more, with humans and Decepticons seemingly on one side, and an Optimus Prime-led team on the other, taking a moment of respite and recalibration since last issue's kerfuffle and almost cover-blowing blow-up. And we get to look at some of the cast's members' past experiences, both further back and closer to the now.

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Robots in Disguise #31 (Dawn of the Autobots) Review
Uh.. yes.. sorry


The narrative did not do too much for me, this time round. It felt too much like the moment to regroup, something that has been complained about previous iterations of the comics - and that work well as a trade, less so as a monthly. The character building, on the other hand, was very mcuh appreciated, and goes some way to explain the distended storyline in the issue, and I am particularly fond of John Barber's Soundwave vision.

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Robots in Disguise #31 (Dawn of the Autobots) Review
I just.. I..


The dialogue is also quite good, with some excellent chemistry between the Autobot team, some mixing, some clashing (and a great moment with Kup and Optimus); even Jazz' internal narration, though some parts feel a little overly drawn, works overall with the 'new' character he's being given in the story - and sets his voice up nicely for the rest of the issue, too.

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Robots in Disguise #31 (Dawn of the Autobots) Review
Awright


Prowl, Optimus, the EDA, Jazz, Devastator, Galvatron -- everything keeps coming back to the Witwickys, one way or the other, and not usually in a good way for our favourite team(s) of Cybertronians. But as much as Barber's revisiting of previous plots to comb the knots is a good strategy, I'm not sure my interested is too piqued with the conclusion of this issue. Though having said that, I realise that pointing it out means it piqued something.. More below.

Art

I still really like seeing different artists working together on the same issue, and in this particular case, personal perspectives, with Andrew Griffith lining the present-day twists and turns, Guido Guidi dealing with troubled Jazz and his broken track and Brendan Cahill donning the purple for some Soundwave/Con flashback time (and some cheeky reference material).

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Robots in Disguise #31 (Dawn of the Autobots) Review
Looking.. Unique, there, Galvatron


Colourists Josh Perez and Joana Lafuente do an exquisite job a making the transitions work and stand apart as needed, building on the three different styles present in the issue. Perez has a nice palette of grittiness to contrast Lafuente's multitoned sections, especially the Decepticon flashback with its focus on what everyone (most) really covets.

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Robots in Disguise #31 (Dawn of the Autobots) Review
Lettering fun!


Tom B. Long has quite a good amount of fun on this issue, with Galvatron's idiosyncratic and melodramatic style: soundwords and effects abound, and there are many individual voices to play around with. The covers also show this, with Jetfire and D.O.C. on the main Griffith/Perez one, a stunning melancholy Jazz by Casey Coller and Joana Lafuente, and Generations Arcee (!) art by Phil Jimenez and Romulo Fajardo Jr (thumbnail).


Thoughts
Spoilerish ahead

I am still very pleased with Barber's approach to Soundwave, making him into one of my favourite characters in the RID ongoing, fleshing out background and current environments - and on some aspects, Prowl too, after my concerns with the Bombshell incident pre-Dark Cybertron. Jazz, unfortunately, felt more of an interlude with chance to smoothen out some crinkles from the story as we knew it.

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Robots in Disguise #31 (Dawn of the Autobots) Review
To next month!


As I mentioned above, there are some elements plot-wise that are looking similar to a number of other stories told in the franchise, and I do hope that is not the case for the series - as I know what the creative team are more than capable of. The read is not bad, by any means, though, and is still definitely worth picking up for a (beautiful) look at some Jazz, Soundwave and general bots.

. :CON: :CON: :CON: ½ out of :CON: :CON: :CON: :CON: :CON:
Credit(s): IDW Publishing, Va'al
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Re: IDW Transformers: Robots in Disguise #31 (Dawn of the Autobots) Review (1594728)
Posted by ZeroWolf on July 29th, 2014 @ 6:07pm CDT
Another good review va'al, so who exactly is leading the decpticons? Soundwave keeps getting more development, it seems so far from what I've read and learnt that Soundwave lets Galvatron think he's in charge. Hopefully picking this up in the next day or so, I'll be able to add my thoughts then
Re: IDW Transformers: Robots in Disguise #31 (Dawn of the Autobots) Review (1594731)
Posted by Neurie on July 29th, 2014 @ 6:16pm CDT
interesting use of Scoop in that issue
Re: IDW Transformers: Robots in Disguise #31 (Dawn of the Autobots) Review (1594756)
Posted by SKYWARPED_128 on July 29th, 2014 @ 7:55pm CDT
The comic's not about Arcee?

Strange, seeing as the toy the comic comes with is Arcee, and shows her on the cover.
Re: IDW Transformers: Robots in Disguise #31 (Dawn of the Autobots) Review (1594842)
Posted by Va'al on July 30th, 2014 @ 2:55am CDT
The toy/covers have been a little bit randomised, to be fair, ever since they started matching them up. I think only the first couple were really synced up. :-?

However, Arcee does feature for at least a scene, which is more than can be said for the Skywarp issue. :D


I have an addition to the review, but it contains some spoilers and will wait for later in the week to post it.
Re: IDW Transformers: Robots in Disguise #31 (Dawn of the Autobots) Review (1595275)
Posted by 1984forever on July 31st, 2014 @ 6:00am CDT
I love the way the Transformers remember that they are alien robots and not humans. For that reason alone MTMTE should be cancelled so RID can come out 2x a month.
Re: IDW Transformers: Robots in Disguise #31 (Dawn of the Autobots) Review (1595283)
Posted by ZeroWolf on July 31st, 2014 @ 6:28am CDT
1984forever wrote:I love the way the Transformers remember that they are alien robots and not humans. For that reason alone MTMTE should be cancelled so RID can come out 2x a month.

I'm not sure how you can say that I mean when the bots talked to each other they acted like humans this goes back as far as the original toon. Plus personally I much prefer MtMtE as I love the interactions and humor. What did you think the bots and cons did when they weren't fighting? Being social isn't a human trait you know ;)
Re: IDW Transformers: Robots in Disguise #31 (Dawn of the Autobots) Review (1595357)
Posted by 1984forever on July 31st, 2014 @ 11:06am CDT
ZeroWolf wrote:
1984forever wrote:I love the way the Transformers remember that they are alien robots and not humans. For that reason alone MTMTE should be cancelled so RID can come out 2x a month.

I'm not sure how you can say that I mean when the bots talked to each other they acted like humans this goes back as far as the original toon. Plus personally I much prefer MtMtE as I love the interactions and humor. What did you think the bots and cons did when they weren't fighting? Being social isn't a human trait you know ;)

One of the problems that I have with IDW is that the Transformers are too human. I've heard them say that they have internal organs, they were itchy, etc. RiD seems too be moving away from that by having Jazz say that "Starscream was a bag of rusty bolts" instead of saying he was full of crap.. and having Thundercracker say the Decepticons were watching like " an ardurian Roc", which no one on Earth knows what that is.

An adult Transformers is not one where the characters sit in bars, play drinking games and debate nonsense. A true adult Transformers is a G1 based (real continuity) Transformers where the characters wage war using military strategies. RiD is as close as it gets right now, so this means that we need more RiD and less MTMTE.
Re: IDW Transformers: Robots in Disguise #31 (Dawn of the Autobots) Review (1595371)
Posted by ZeroWolf on July 31st, 2014 @ 11:52am CDT
1984forever wrote:
ZeroWolf wrote:
1984forever wrote:I love the way the Transformers remember that they are alien robots and not humans. For that reason alone MTMTE should be cancelled so RID can come out 2x a month.

I'm not sure how you can say that I mean when the bots talked to each other they acted like humans this goes back as far as the original toon. Plus personally I much prefer MtMtE as I love the interactions and humor. What did you think the bots and cons did when they weren't fighting? Being social isn't a human trait you know ;)

One of the problems that I have with IDW is that the Transformers are too human. I've heard them say that they have internal organs, they were itchy, etc. RiD seems too be moving away from that by having Jazz say that "Starscream was a bag of rusty bolts" instead of saying he was full of crap.. and having Thundercracker say the Decepticons were watching like " an ardurian Roc", which no one on Earth knows what that is.

An adult Transformers is not one where the characters sit in bars, play drinking games and debate nonsense. A true adult Transformers is a G1 based (real continuity) Transformers where the characters wage war using military strategies. RiD is as close as it gets right now, so this means that we need more RiD and less MTMTE.

To be fair, strategies are only being used by two characters, Prowl and Soundwave. You put them in MtMtE then that would be more your liking. Plus in MtMtE have used terms that you would like, such as the time Megatron knocked Trailcutter's intake chip permanently online. Besides what's so wrong with alien beings acting in a way that we can sorta relate to.

Guess what I'm trying to haphazardly say is that MtMtE and RiD have two different styles, so they can tell two different stories. No one forces you to read either, and for me I'm glad that they did it this way ( though trying to catch up on tpb is expensive!) more of IDWs G1 universe can be explored this way.