IDW Transformers Version 2.0 "A Bold New Era" Ongoing Discussion

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Re: IDW Transformers Version 2.0 "A Bold New Era" Ongoing Discussion

Postby Dark Ops » Fri Jun 04, 2021 5:17 pm

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There's good and bad about the series for me. First, my take on the bad:

I liked the direction of IDW v1 because it went to new places. The war finally ended. The same war we've been rehashing in one way or another since 1984. There was a new dynamic. New combinations, variations, and permutations on character interactions. And then v2 switched from something so new and forward-looking back to "Day One: Megatron Was Grumpy". And then killing off a fan-favorite from the prior series to make what seemed like a mean-spirited point was... well, it was certainly a start.

And then there's the fact that we know what's going to happen: the big picture is old. When it goes to the two leaders talking, we mostly know what they're going to say. Or at least the gist of it. It's foregone conclusion. This was not done any favors by the criticism of the Siege cartoon, which was again, a storm of cliche. Just one wrapped in portentious declarations and more pauses than a Pinter play.

That said... Inside the larger framework, there are some interesting ideas. I just wish we'd see more of it! This War of the Threefold Spark. Exarchon. The big players there. That The Companions elicit that kind of reaction from battle-hardened 'cons? There's a story there. The side stories with Hound and company trying to evacuate the planet's organic refugee population. Cyclonus and the demons in his mind. Offworld diplomacy and how Cybertronians interacted with the larger galactic community. Give us more of those, please. The list goes on, but Megatron and Prime dull it by comparison because we already know what's going to happen. Because we've seen them do it before. It's simply going through the motions, and it pulls out a lot of energy from what had been building up.

I don't think the talking is the problem. I liked Ironhide going over things with the security team, and spending time one-on-one with people like Javelin. I liked Wheeljack and crew trying to problem solve the moon. Geomotus geeking out about seismic disturbances in the Rust Sea. Glyph and Tap-Out on their mission. Nautica being excited and Road Rage being security.

To me the biggest problem is that the focus shouldn't be on Megatron and Prime. We know that story.
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IDW Transformers Annual 2021 Review

Postby Mr.MicroMaster » Wed Jun 09, 2021 9:09 am

The Last of Her Kind
A Review of Transformers Annual 2021 by Mr. Micromaster

Spoilers Ahead
Editor's Note: Yes, as you saw in the title above this review is not authored by who its news posting says, but instead by guest reviewer Mr. Micromaster. With that out of the way, let's let him get to it. Thanks, Mr. Micromaster!

Overall, this book is an incredibly fun read with excellent art. If you have not been enjoying the current ongoing series you may want to pick up Transformers Annual 2021 because it has some of Brian Ruckley’s best overall writing in the series so far. Alex Milne as always delivers with the art.

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Speaking of Milne’s art, lets talk about it first because it's just superb as per usual. The action scenes feel dynamic and well done. You can really feel the emotion on the characters faces especially, Lightbright's. John-Paul Bove’s excellent coloring helps Milne’s art feel different than his work in the previous IDW Transformers continuity. The lettering by Jake Wood is pretty good overall. One minor gripe with the lettering is that after Airachnid's introduction, most of a panel showing her new design is taken up by speech bubbles that maybe could have been moved around to show more of the art.

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Ruckley’s writing is on point for this issue. The character moments are excellent this issue and everyone gets their chance to shine. Scattershot has a particularly epic moment where Thunderwing tries to intimidate him and Scattershot just is not having any of it. There are many other well written character interactions, including one where Lightspeed and Lightbright have a great moment together about what it is like to be a City Speaker. Another fun example is the interaction between the Technobots and Bludgeon which I found quite humorous. There is also an implied history between them. Probably one of the most interesting interactions is between Lightbright and her titan Lodestar, you can really feel that they have a deep connection.

The conversation between Lodestar and Vigilem is rather interesting. The two are starkly different, Lodestar is content with the present where as Vigilem longs for the glories of the past. In this respect Vigilem and Thunderwing are quite alike. In the past Thunderwing was a mighty figure during the expansionist days of Cybertron but now he is relegated to the backwater that is Hexagon. He is also someone who loves to hear the sound of his own voice, as Strafe puts it. Airachnid is a nice inclusion and even though she is on the cover I forgot about her, so her appearance came as a nice surprise to me. Here she is cast as a mad scientist which is an interesting take on the character.

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The story is overall very engaging and kept me invested throughout. I never once checked my phone or opened another tab while I was reading. The emotional core of the book is Lightbright and Lodestar. We see their bond and how they're hesitant to hunt down and potentially kill another Titan. The ending is quite the gut punch, as while our heroes escape the clutches of Thunderwing and his cohorts, they do not escape tragedy.

Verdict
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This annual is all around excellent. The writing, the art and the coloring are all top tier. That is not to say it is perfect. The fight between Lodestar and Vigilem should have gotten a bit more page real estate to truly invoke the sense of Lodestar's struggle to defeat Vigilem. The characters and concepts introduced in this issue were very fun to read about, but in an issue that feels like a side-story, without follow-up it ultimately will not matter, so here is hoping we pick back up on the threads introduced in the near future.

Final Score
. :BOT: :BOT: :BOT: :BOT:
out of
:BOT: :BOT: :BOT: :BOT: :BOT:


This issue is out today, and you can pick it up at the Seibertron.com eBay store or at your local shop, check here to find the closest shop to you.
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Re: IDW Transformers Version 2.0 "A Bold New Era" Ongoing Discussion

Postby D-Maximal_Primal » Wed Jun 09, 2021 7:38 pm

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Love me some Technobots. From what I've heard, this was actually a pretty enjoyable story, I'll have to give this one a go
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Re: IDW Transformers Version 2.0 "A Bold New Era" Ongoing Discussion

Postby Mr.MicroMaster » Mon Jun 14, 2021 8:41 am

D-Maximal_Primal wrote:Love me some Technobots. From what I've heard, this was actually a pretty enjoyable story, I'll have to give this one a go


Same the Technobots are one of my favorite combiner teams. They have a lot of great moments in this issue.
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Re: IDW Transformers Version 2.0 "A Bold New Era" Ongoing Discussion

Postby Dark Ops » Mon Jun 14, 2021 10:38 am

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This story kind of goes to what I was saying earlier about how IDW 2.0 has some nifty ideas, but you need to take the story away from Prime and Megs. They kind of drag the rest of the 'verse down around them. Ruckley can write a good tale, good action, good dialogue and characterizations, but Prime and Megatron seem less like characters and more like caricatures anymore.
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Re: IDW Transformers Version 2.0 "A Bold New Era" Ongoing Discussion

Postby ScottyP » Tue Jun 15, 2021 1:09 pm

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Dark Ops wrote:This story kind of goes to what I was saying earlier about how IDW 2.0 has some nifty ideas, but you need to take the story away from Prime and Megs. They kind of drag the rest of the 'verse down around them. Ruckley can write a good tale, good action, good dialogue and characterizations, but Prime and Megatron seem less like characters and more like caricatures anymore.
I think the improvement in the action scenes for this issue is almost all on Milne. No way to prove that, but the fact that it's suddenly fun to visually read makes me think this.
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Re: IDW Transformers Version 2.0 "A Bold New Era" Ongoing Discussion

Postby Rodimus Prime » Fri Jun 18, 2021 3:33 pm

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I think Transformers media needs to get away from Prime and Megatron altogether. Or at most keep them as background characters others talk about or refer to. I hate to say it, but they're getting old as the focal points of every story. It's like everything happens to them, and everyone else is just window dressing or a prop. The lore is full of interesting and colorful characters, as the previous IDW stories showed us, why can't we have more of that?
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Five Page Preview of IDW Transformers #31

Postby ScottyP » Tue Jun 22, 2021 1:29 pm

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Among the pair of new Transformers comics available tomorrow is Transformers #31 which kicks off the series' "Lord of Misrule" story arc. The solicitation brief for this issue says to expect some adventure with Perceptor and Jumpstream, and is copied below.
Optimus Prime's Autobots are starting to fray. They need energon and supplies that they just don't have access to. But Perceptor has a plan-if he can supercharge Jumpstream's teleportation powers, the Autobots will have all sorts of new access to Cybertron. Of course, that relies on the experiment going right and things can never be quite so easy...

Check out the preview below and look out for this book digitally, at your local comic shop, or on the Seibertron.com eBay store tomorrow.

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Re: IDW Transformers Version 2.0 "A Bold New Era" Ongoing Discussion

Postby Bounti76 » Tue Jun 22, 2021 2:42 pm

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I'm getting IDW 2005 Brainstorm vibes from this version of Perceptor.
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Re: IDW Transformers Version 2.0 "A Bold New Era" Ongoing Discussion

Postby AllNewSuperRobot » Wed Jun 23, 2021 4:22 am

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Maybe this series would work better as prose? They're just not really doing all that much with the visual medium.
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IDW Transformers #31 Review

Postby Mr.MicroMaster » Wed Jun 23, 2021 11:25 am

Into the Thick of It
A Review of Transformers #31 by Mr. Micromaster

Spoilers Ahead
Editor's Note: Yes, once again and as you saw in the title above this review is not authored by who its news posting says, but instead by guest reviewer Mr. Micromaster. With that out of the way, let's let him get to it. Thanks, Mr. Micromaster!

Transformers #31 is pretty good, the writing is good and the art is even better, it's great in this book. If you have not been enjoying the current IDW ongoing this issue probably will not change your mind, especially since this is another one of those issues that is pretty much all talking but it is probably the best execution of it.

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Strongarm, Master of Foreshadowing

Let’s start with the story of this issue. As I mentioned beforehand this issue like many issues in this series is a lot of talking but this is by far the best execution of that story format. This is probably because it is not just one conversation happening but a variety of different conversations which pick back up on various threads from past issues, and their absence has been an issue in the past. It also has a new thread with a relatively new character in Jumpstream.

Picking up on the older threads provides several nice moments in this book. The opening text crawl of the book reveals it has been 40 cycles since the end of the last issue, which is about a month and ten days, give or take. The issue picks up right where TF #30 left off with Provoke who was one of the ghosts that Cyclonus was seeing, and it turns out she is actually alive and has been in stasis for nearly two mega-cycles (nearly two thousand years). This leads to a nice scene between Cyclonus and Flatline with some emotive facial expressions from artist Anna Malkova. Another welcome moment is the catch-up scene between Ultra Magnus and Optimus, which also serves to fill the reader in as well.

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I'm back!

Sideswipe and Bumper are also back in action in this issue after taking a beating in issue #20. There is a fun moment between Bumper and Sideswipe where Bumper asks Sideswipe for an opinion on his new arm. There are also several interactions with Jumpstream and Preceptor in his lab that give you a better sense of who these characters are in this universe.

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Looks like Scrounge has some competition

Now on to the art. Malkova’s art as per usual is good and is complemented nicely by David Garcia Cruz’s colors. Malkova’s faces are pretty expressive, for example, you can really see the sadness on Cyclonus’ face and the insanity dripping from Sunstorm. Her cityscapes are impressive as well. Angel Hernandez’s art is also good though personally I prefer Malkova’s art. I will say though that Runamuck’s proportions seem off, but Hernandez’s art does shine in the alternate Cybertron. Jake Wood’s lettering is good as per usual and no obvious issues stuck out.

You can find full credits for Transformers #31 in our Vector Sigma Database entry for this issue

Verdict
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Overall, I enjoyed this issue. For me there were enough significant things happening in this issue to keep me interested throughout. I am legitimately interested to see what happens in the next issue.

Final Score
. :BOT: :BOT: :BOT: :BOT:
out of
:BOT: :BOT: :BOT: :BOT: :BOT:


This issue is out today, and you can pick it up at the Seibertron.com eBay store or at your local shop, check here to find the closest shop to you.
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Re: IDW Transformers Version 2.0 "A Bold New Era" Ongoing Discussion

Postby ScottyP » Wed Jun 23, 2021 8:53 pm

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This is going to look weird following the review on the front page, but again, I didn't write the review. Moving on.

The first half of this issue might have been, character-wise only, some of the strongest stuff in the run. With all the follow-up to various disparate plot threads, I thought it was leading to them coalescing in some cool way.

Instead the later part of the issue had an insultingly stupid twist to bring back a villain known only through reference and allusion, who we also learned isn't even a Cybertronian earlier in the issue.

Everytime I see hope, something else jumps in and further cements my opinion that this book is really bad. If there isn't a new writer after this arc, I'm dropping the main TF book from my pull list which is really hard to do as a collector. Only happened once before in late '09, was back in by mid-2011 for that huge turnaround so maybe they've got another one in 'em.
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Re: IDW Transformers Version 2.0 "A Bold New Era" Ongoing Discussion

Postby Mr.MicroMaster » Wed Jun 23, 2021 9:41 pm

ScottyP wrote:This is going to look weird following the review on the front page, but again, I didn't write the review. Moving on.

The first half of this issue might have been, character-wise only, some of the strongest stuff in the run. With all the follow-up to various disparate plot threads, I thought it was leading to them coalescing in some cool way.

Instead the later part of the issue had an insultingly stupid twist to bring back a villain known only through reference and allusion, who we also learned isn't even a Cybertronian earlier in the issue.

Everytime I see hope, something else jumps in and further cements my opinion that this book is really bad. If there isn't a new writer after this arc, I'm dropping the main TF book from my pull list which is really hard to do as a collector. Only happened once before in late '09, was back in by mid-2011 for that huge turnaround so maybe they've got another one in 'em.

I definitely agree with you the first half of this issue is probably the best part. While personally I liked the plot twist at the end I understand where you’re coming from and if the plot twist falls flat next issue it will be a dud in my opinion. Honestly while I have been enjoying this book lately there have definitely been moments where I thought about dropping it. I agree with you honestly changing writers would not be a bad thing for this book. You could give Ruckley a Galaxies style book where he could tell smaller more contained stories I think he’d be great at that.
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Re: IDW Transformers Version 2.0 "A Bold New Era" Ongoing Discussion

Postby ScottyP » Thu Jun 24, 2021 10:56 am

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^ Yeah I feel like Escape is touching more on the kind of story he wants to tell. Cybertronians interacting with dozens of alien species and the consequences of war removing that element from their culture is a neat thought, and I think he wants to get more into it, but as ANSR said above:

AllNewSuperRobot wrote:Maybe this series would work better as prose? They're just not really doing all that much with the visual medium.
The kind of story I suggested may also work better as prose. Though the stuff early on with Rubble going through that market-like area gave plenty of material to visually digest too, so who knows.
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Re: IDW Transformers Version 2.0 "A Bold New Era" Ongoing Discussion

Postby AllNewSuperRobot » Thu Jun 24, 2021 12:07 pm

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Plenty to digest, sure. But it's not really as dynamic or interesting as it could or should be. I dug out and re-read issue one, the other day. In comparison to Infiltration #1, it really lacks a visual punch.
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Re: IDW Transformers Version 2.0 "A Bold New Era" Ongoing Discussion

Postby shawnmct » Thu Jun 24, 2021 2:14 pm

I loved this issue. I'm still constantly confused, as I think the series is tackling too many plots at the same time, but it's still really enjoyable.

It really looks like they're setting up a version of Sunstorm's Dreamwave arc. Which is one of my favorite arcs in all of Transformers, and why Sunstorm is one of my favorite characters.

I love Perceptor being front and center, but dislike the near cavalier attitude he's been displaying towards safety. But, he's still there.

How the end twist is executed will determine how I feel about it. Definitely caught my attention, though. I imagine we're about to get A LOT of backstory.

Also, during that 'universe jump' (my best description of Jumpstream's trip), what's with the black seeker?

Fun questions, now it will depend on what the answers are!
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Re: IDW Transformers Version 2.0 "A Bold New Era" Ongoing Discussion

Postby Rodimus Prime » Thu Jun 24, 2021 5:05 pm

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AllNewSuperRobot wrote:Plenty to digest, sure. But it's not really as dynamic or interesting as it could or should be. I dug out and re-read issue one, the other day. In comparison to Infiltration #1, it really lacks a visual punch.
So would that be the fault of the writer for not setting/describing the scene well enough or the illustrator for not executing said description?
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Re: IDW Transformers Version 2.0 "A Bold New Era" Ongoing Discussion

Postby D-Maximal_Primal » Thu Jun 24, 2021 6:42 pm

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I like that Perceptor. For some reason, I am hearing Star Wars Bad Batch Tech when he talks. Plus the yellow eyes are sharp looking
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IDW Transformers #32 Review

Postby Mr.MicroMaster » Wed Jul 14, 2021 9:16 am

Luckily, Nothing Came of It
A Review of Transformers #32 by Mr. Micromaster

Spoilers Ahead
Editor's Note: Yes, for a third time and as you saw in the title above this review is not authored by who its news posting says, but instead by guest reviewer Mr. Micromaster. With that out of the way, let's let him get to it. Thanks, Mr. Micromaster!

For the most part I have been enjoying the Transformers ongoing consistently since issue #20. Unfortunately, I found this issue to be rather disappointing. Personally, I was hoping this issue would reveal more backstory to Exarchon, but alas last issue’s plot twist was honestly disappointing thanks to this issue.

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Action Master Bumble Bee Jetpack not included

Now let’s brighten up this review by talking about the only real positive of this book. That being the art. In the same vein as last issue, Anna Malkova and Angel Hernandez are on art duty for this issue. While Hernandez’s art style is not my favorite, he still delivers a plethora of dynamic action scenes in the beginning half of the book. The latter half of the book is drawn by Malkova who knocks it out of the park. David Garcia Cruz kills it on coloring with his colors working great with both Malkova and Hernandez art. Jake Wood’s lettering as always is done competently and doesn’t interfere with art.

You can find full credits for Transformers #32 in our Vector Sigma Database entry for this issue

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Cyclonus seeking help to escape this lackluster book

I found the plot to be utterly lacking this issue. I felt like first half of this issue with Jumpstream could have been shortened to two or three pages, as it really didn’t amount to anything all that special or interesting. I feel like these pages would have been better spent exploring the ramifications of Jumpstream “cross overing” or more time with Cyclonus and Provoke. Something I had been enjoying about this series was its nice character moments, but this issue lacked those. I feel like the first half of this issue didn’t allow the rest of it to breathe.

Verdict
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Unfortunately, the audience didn’t.

The plot this issue lacked anything to make it feel special or standout. This issue really felt like I was just reading banal dialogue rather than reading an enticing Transformers story. For me there was maybe one and half interesting moments from this issue. I also found the plot twist at the end of book rather unnecessary and uninteresting. The only saving grace of this issue is the art. Malkova and Hernandez did excellent and dynamic work this issue. I am hoping next issue will better than this one, it definitely sounds more interesting in the solicitation.

Final Score
. :BOT: :BOT: ½
out of
:BOT: :BOT: :BOT: :BOT: :BOT:


This issue is out today, and you can pick it up at the Seibertron.com eBay store or at your local shop, check here to find the closest shop to you.
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Re: IDW Transformers Version 2.0 "A Bold New Era" Ongoing Discussion

Postby AllNewSuperRobot » Wed Jul 14, 2021 9:31 am

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Rodimus Prime wrote:
AllNewSuperRobot wrote:Plenty to digest, sure. But it's not really as dynamic or interesting as it could or should be. I dug out and re-read issue one, the other day. In comparison to Infiltration #1, it really lacks a visual punch.
So would that be the fault of the writer for not setting/describing the scene well enough or the illustrator for not executing said description?


Weird that today was the first time a reply alert for this thread appeared :-?

Not knowing the illustrator's prior work, if they are new to the business or not. If it is the former, I would put it down to a lack of story boarding/scene setting by the writer.
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Re: IDW Transformers Version 2.0 "A Bold New Era" Ongoing Discussion

Postby Moody magpie » Wed Jul 14, 2021 12:17 pm

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Is it worrying that I'm enjoying the Transformers/MLP more than the current ongoing series? Come back James Roberts all is forgiven!
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Re: IDW Transformers Version 2.0 "A Bold New Era" Ongoing Discussion

Postby Windsweeper » Wed Jul 14, 2021 4:45 pm

I've just read this issue and actually enjoyed it.
The alternate world/future piqued my curiosity. Interesting to see Skywarp as an army builder though it's a shame the exclusivity of his Siege mold prohibits picking up a few of the figures.

Nice to see Powerglide make an albeit short appearance and Black Jack among the rebels.

I like Flatline's portrayal so far. He's not a stereotypical, sadistic, evil doctor. He seems to care about his patients.

Not a fan of Exarchon so far but that's because I don't like seeing Megatron enthralled.

I liked the mention of Nucleon and it's effects on Bumblebee's rebels as I loved the Actionmasters growing up.

It's a shame the reviewer didn't enjoy the issue but each to their own.
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Re: IDW Transformers Version 2.0 "A Bold New Era" Ongoing Discussion

Postby ScottyP » Wed Jul 14, 2021 9:29 pm

Weapon: Battle Blades
AllNewSuperRobot wrote:
Rodimus Prime wrote:
AllNewSuperRobot wrote:Plenty to digest, sure. But it's not really as dynamic or interesting as it could or should be. I dug out and re-read issue one, the other day. In comparison to Infiltration #1, it really lacks a visual punch.
So would that be the fault of the writer for not setting/describing the scene well enough or the illustrator for not executing said description?


Weird that today was the first time a reply alert for this thread appeared :-?

Not knowing the illustrator's prior work, if they are new to the business or not. If it is the former, I would put it down to a lack of story boarding/scene setting by the writer.
I know nothing if Angel Hernandez's career before Transformers, but TF 2019 #1 was his first work for TFs. He peaks early, goes away for a long time, then returns to draw the end of 31 and most of 32.

His parts of 32 are a sloppy mess. Spotlight: Thundercracker level bad art. Heart of Darkness level bad. Lumpy characters in wonky settings participating in clumsy action.
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Re: IDW Transformers Version 2.0 "A Bold New Era" Ongoing Discussion

Postby D-Maximal_Primal » Thu Jul 15, 2021 7:01 pm

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I say this as someone who reads the wiki entries just to keep up, I have no interest in actually buying the main book (except the annual, I will discuss after this), I like the sounds of Exarchon. And that twist from the end sounds great. Exarchon is a breathe of fresh air that was needed, a real threat and a unique one at that. I like the idea of him being the true big bad and not Megatron, especially since Megatron kinda really sucks.

Now, the annual: I actually bought the annual, courtesy of Seibs, and it's my first actual book I bought of the new continuity. I plan to get Galaxies 1-6, but I'm still salty they didn't do those 6 together in a trade and bundled them with 6 other issues from the ongoing or something like that.

anyway, annual: I got it because Lodestar is cool, Milne was on art, Thunderwing, Bludgeon, Dirge, and Airachnid were antagonists, and Computron at long last shows up in something! I will admit, I liked the story, and I really did like the Technobots. The 1 thing I didn't like was the pacing: the fight between Lodestar and Vigilem was hardly a fight, and Computron appeared but barely. It feels like those big moments got less screen time then they should have.

Outside of that, I enjoyed it. I will enjoy reading it some more too
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Re: IDW Transformers Version 2.0 "A Bold New Era" Ongoing Discussion

Postby Mr.MicroMaster » Sun Jul 18, 2021 7:23 pm

Windsweeper wrote:I've just read this issue and actually enjoyed it.
The alternate world/future piqued my curiosity. Interesting to see Skywarp as an army builder though it's a shame the exclusivity of his Siege mold prohibits picking up a few of the figures.

Nice to see Powerglide make an albeit short appearance and Black Jack among the rebels.

I like Flatline's portrayal so far. He's not a stereotypical, sadistic, evil doctor. He seems to care about his patients.

Not a fan of Exarchon so far but that's because I don't like seeing Megatron enthralled.

I liked the mention of Nucleon and it's effects on Bumblebee's rebels as I loved the Actionmasters growing up.

It's a shame the reviewer didn't enjoy the issue but each to their own.

I am glad you enjoyed it even though I couldn't. However I do agree with you that was nice to see Powerglide and the rebels being action masters was one of the more interesting things from the book.
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