Transformers 'Ongoing' #4 Reviewed

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Transformers 'Ongoing' #4 Reviewed

Postby Blurrz » Tue Feb 23, 2010 2:15 am

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Mix Transformers comics and exalted news administrator tigertracks_24 and you've got one very entertaining review. Check out Transformers Ongoing #4, as the drama and action continue this week...

“If there is one thing the history of evolution has taught us it's that life will not be contained. Life breaks free, expands to new territory, and crashes through barriers, painfully, maybe even dangerously.”

“No, I'm simply saying that life, uh... finds a way.”

-Dr. Ian Malcolm, Jurassic Park (by Michael Crichton)

“Megatron acted as if the humans were beneath his attention. But he couldn’t have exterminated them even if he wanted to. Life will find a way.”


-Thundercracker, Transformers Ongoing #4 (by Mike Costa)

As you can see, Dr. Ian “Thundercracker” Malcolm, has been doing some deep thinking during his recovery on Earth. He studies the plants, the buildings, the weather, and of course, the television signals. He’s trying to find a greater purpose for himself, and the Transformers on the planet. After making an ultimate sacrifice that finds him to be the enemy to some of his brothers (‘All Hail Megatron’), he looks to the future, and what it might mean for himself and his fellow Decepticons. For some reason, Skywatch seems to be able to find a lot of Transformers that were able to move and transform to hide, but could not find the remains of Thundercracker as he had some epiphanies laying, crawling, and rusting in the streets of the Decepticon demolished New York City.

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“But the Autobots were in hiding, too. The humans took away their victory, just as they took away my war.”

“So we fell in behind the only one who can lead us. The cheat. The fast-talker.”


As Thundercracker narrates his version of the story, another piece of the story is getting unfolded from the more omnipresent point-of-view. Swindle and his Decepticons and Hot Rod and his Autobots, make final preparations to their ship for the trip off of Earth. Their tentative alliance seems to be taking both groups in a direction that before was unheard of in the Transformers war.

And here we have an interesting set of relationships happening. We get to start to see a side of Hot Rod that we had not really seen before, he’s showing he’s more than a little conceited. Of course, a certain bot knows it, and is playing on this part of him.

"I just want you to know we see what you’re doing. Your followers, and me... We see your destiny. You know what they’ve started calling you? Rodimus Prime."


-Swindle


And to make matters worse, after his appearance in Bumblebee #2, Ultra Magnus makes his way to this Autobot group, still a dually appointed officer of the Tyrest Accord, etc., etc., and he is not happy with Hot Rod and Swindle’s arrangement. Magnus and Swindle have more than a little history, and this leads to...won’t spoil it for you.


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The Transformers are 'transforming' in a way we have not really seen before, and it drives this issue, and the next few to come. It leads to conflicts of old ‘tried-and-true’ ideas and alliances, and leads to...unknown, uncharted ways of thinking and being for our favorite characters.

All this leads up to what looks to be a very exciting issue #5 next month! Do you still care about Transformers Ongoing? No. Yes. I hope so. It is getting better. When read alongside the other two books, we are seeing quite an interesting interweaving of stories that when read individually are fun, and interesting, but when read together, they really are creating a wonderful story in this IDW-verse.

For the record, I still don’t like Don’s art as much as I do Nick Roche’s (Transformers Last Stand of the Wreckers). I think I like it better than Chee’s (Transformers Bumblebee) though. Each book has a nice style to it, but Don’s really, really is a stretch as it is much more of a new direction when compared with the other two styles. I could get on board with the intricate looking bodies, and panels everywhere, but the faces, and heads, they still seem to bother me a little too much. I have gotten used to them though, so I can start paying attention more to the story, and worry less about my dislike, and uncomfortableness with Don’s designs of faces and heads in this series.

It does seem that the writing and the art do head nicely in the same direction as we see the Transformers making changes in new and interesting ways in Transformers Ongoing #4. One can then see why Don might have tried to adapt a new style, as adapting and transforming old habits seems to be the theme here by Costa. But...
“Yeah, but your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they didn't stop to think if they should.”


-Dr. Ian Malcolm

I’m sure Mike and Don did think if they should change our Transformers, even if we don’t think so. I’m interested in their direction, hopefully, it will continue to intrigue us.

Thanks to IDW Publishing and Seibetron.com for the ability to read this issue a day early, and review it for our community. I love the Transformers comic book mythology, and while I am always a bit cautious with all the reboots, and new ways, looks, etc., I still enjoy a good story, good art, and Transformers, and IDW is still allowing us to do this, even if it is not exactly what you or I would like to see, or read happening.

Pick this issue up. It gives us some very good insights into Mike Costa’s writing direction (which he also talks a little about in a column in the end ‘letter’s page’ of this book). And I would say it makes a pretty big impact tremor for the whole Autobot and Decepticon IDW future.

“That is one big pile of s***.”


Nah, it’s not, in fact, I am quite sure you will enjoy this book much, much more.



Transformers Ongoing #4 is due to be released this week in comic stores everywhere! You can see our coverage of the five-page preview here!

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Credits:
Written by Mike Costa
Art by Don Figueroa
Colors by J. Brown
Letters by Robbie Robbins
Associate Editor, Denton J. Tipton
Editor, Andy Schmidt


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Re: Transformers 'Ongoing' #4 Reviewed

Postby Savage » Tue Feb 23, 2010 4:01 am

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I'm with you on the art. Aspects of it are growing on me in this series. The body designs mostly. Except for a few that still look off to me. It's the overly complex faces that bug me.

The story seems to be progressing well, and I do like where things seem to be headed, with alliances and divisions. I'm really interested to see where this goes, especially with Magnus in the mix now.
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Re: Transformers 'Ongoing' #4 Reviewed

Postby Chaoslock » Tue Feb 23, 2010 6:13 am

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I didn't imagine I can't identify a bot, but: Who's the yellow guy on the "Rodimus Prime" pic?
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Re: Transformers 'Ongoing' #4 Reviewed

Postby Tigertrack » Tue Feb 23, 2010 7:08 am

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I believe the 'yellow bot' is Stunticon Dragstrip... :CON:
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Re: Transformers 'Ongoing' #4 Reviewed

Postby Tigertrack » Tue Feb 23, 2010 7:12 am

Motto: "A good head and a good heart are always a formidable combination."
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Savage wrote:I'm with you on the art. Aspects of it are growing on me in this series. The body designs mostly. Except for a few that still look off to me. It's the overly complex faces that bug me.

The story seems to be progressing well, and I do like where things seem to be headed, with alliances and divisions. I'm really interested to see where this goes, especially with Magnus in the mix now.


Totally agree with your thoughts. The new dynamic that Magnus is bringing is excellent. And after what Hot Rod, Rodimus Prime did to him... well let's say it's about to get even more so.

I was also surprised with Prowl in this one. I guess, I did not think he would stick with Rod's group or believe in Rod's ideals quite so much.
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Re: Transformers 'Ongoing' #4 Reviewed

Postby Prime Evil » Tue Feb 23, 2010 7:26 am

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tigertracks 24 wrote:I believe the 'yellow bot' is Stunticon Dragstrip... :CON:


But he doesn't have a purple head like Dragstrip. I too can't believe I cannot ID a TF in this comic. I don't hate issues 1-3, but I've yet to be wowed. I feel that the first 3 seem just super Emo to me and I really am disappointed, but this issue looks to be better. And I hate to knock on an artist style, especially Don's work, but in this case of evolutionary style, I'm just not feeling it. I can't get the emotions from the faces like I used to. I was re-reading my TPB Stormbringer last nite and it just made me miss Don's old style so much. I'm kinda sad that we won't be seeing that again. For me, it IS bout the faces and looks. Not body design.
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Re: Transformers 'Ongoing' #4 Reviewed

Postby dragons » Tue Feb 23, 2010 9:31 am

looks good but the art looks littel choppy from the previous issues i dont have any issues from this set so here goes is that octane helping thundercracker out of the ruble.?


im all for movie verse style its nice sometimes but most of the time you cant make out bot face experssion in soem panels there not getting close enough to there faces to find out what there feeling next new transformers series i would like to if they sick with movie verse style make the bots into baystle bots but give them g1 faces best of both worlds, g1 faces combined with movie style bodies sounds dumb.
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Re: Transformers 'Ongoing' #4 Reviewed

Postby Hairball178 » Tue Feb 23, 2010 9:34 am

I think he's "generic background character who gets blown away by a Decepticon in this or the next issue".
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Re: Transformers 'Ongoing' #4 Reviewed

Postby Tigertrack » Tue Feb 23, 2010 9:36 am

Motto: "A good head and a good heart are always a formidable combination."
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Hairball178 wrote:I think he's "generic background character who gets blown away by a Decepticon in this or the next issue".


dragons wrote:looks good but the art looks littel choppy from the previous issues i dont have any issues from this set so here goes is that octane helping thundercracker out of the ruble.?

faces are getting ok its hard to tell what the emotion on there faces are they dont get close enough sometimes to tell.


That is indeed Octane.
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Re: Transformers 'Ongoing' #4 Reviewed

Postby Ultra Magnus » Tue Feb 23, 2010 9:55 am

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Love the Jurassic Park References. In fact, I'm going to watch that tonight.

8)

And, I am STILL a supporter of Don's new art style. Josh's stuff has really come a long way, but Don's stuff is really, really cool. I wonder if this story will endeavor to explain the Seekers' alt-modes...
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Re: Transformers 'Ongoing' #4 Reviewed

Postby Prime Evil » Tue Feb 23, 2010 10:09 am

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Ultra Magnus wrote:I wonder if this story will endeavor to explain the Seekers' alt-modes...


The funny thing is, I think I'm the only one that doesn't care that these bots and cons have changed their body types. I'm pretty down with having the look go from EJ Su's F22, to AHM F-15/g1 look, and now back to the F22's again. I look at it like a change of clothes. It's the faces that I dislike.
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Re: Transformers 'Ongoing' #4 Reviewed

Postby Darth Bombshell » Tue Feb 23, 2010 10:12 am

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Blurrz wrote:“Yeah, but your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they didn't stop to think if they should.”


You have to wonder whether or not anyone at IDW had this in mind when they decided to start the ongoing.

Blurrz wrote:
“That is one big pile of s***.”


Nah, it’s not


Yeah. Yeah, it is. And from the look of things, it ain't about to get any better anytime soon.
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Re: Transformers 'Ongoing' #4 Reviewed

Postby Dead Metal » Tue Feb 23, 2010 11:33 am

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Chaoslock wrote:I didn't imagine I can't identify a bot, but: Who's the yellow guy on the "Rodimus Prime" pic?

Maybe it's Swindle? He got mentioned quite a lot in this review.


Ah Jurassic Park, I would rather read a comic based on that than this. But I do think it's rather interesting that TC's getting some character.

So, how did Spike Miss Thundercracker but get so many others?
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Re: Transformers 'Ongoing' #4 Reviewed

Postby Tigertrack » Tue Feb 23, 2010 11:34 am

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Darth Bombshell wrote:
Blurrz wrote:“Yeah, but your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they didn't stop to think if they should.”


You have to wonder whether or not anyone at IDW had this in mind when they decided to start the ongoing.

Blurrz wrote:
“That is one big pile of s***.”


Nah, it’s not


Yeah. Yeah, it is. And from the look of things, it ain't about to get any better anytime soon.


Just so you know DB, Blurrz didn't write those in, I wrote those quotes in the review to further reference Jurassic Park.
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Re: Transformers 'Ongoing' #4 Reviewed

Postby Tigertrack » Tue Feb 23, 2010 11:36 am

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Dead Metal wrote:
Chaoslock wrote:I didn't imagine I can't identify a bot, but: Who's the yellow guy on the "Rodimus Prime" pic?

Maybe it's Swindle? He got mentioned quite a lot in this review.


Ah Jurassic Park, I would rather read a comic based on that than this. But I do think it's rather interesting that TC's getting some character.

So, how did Spike Miss Thundercracker but get so many others?


Nah, Swindle is easy to tell he is Swindle, he has his visor, and he was also in hiding when Magnus came so as to not be arrested again. Whoops, he came out of hiding, and whoops, he wants Swindle in custody...

But the yellow bot in that frame is not Swindle. I still say it is Dragstrip, you just can't see the purple part of his helmet/head. Stunticons are referenced quite highly, and anyone looking at the cover for #5, knows why we are getting more impact tremors...
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Re: Transformers 'Ongoing' #4 Reviewed

Postby Tigertrack » Tue Feb 23, 2010 12:02 pm

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Other theories on the yellow bot appear to be Sandstorm. He's supposed to be in Rod's crew too.
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Re: Transformers 'Ongoing' #4 Reviewed

Postby Tirade » Tue Feb 23, 2010 1:46 pm

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tigertracks 24 wrote:Other theories on the yellow bot appear to be Sandstorm. He's supposed to be in Rod's crew too.


This speaks volumes about the art style. The current form is a muddled mess. At this point, I'd take Wildman over Don's movie-verse style. His alternate covers have looked nice. Look at the Wreckers comic. Why can't IDW stick with that style? That's beautiful work there (both art and writing).
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Re: Transformers 'Ongoing' #4 Reviewed

Postby Tigertrack » Tue Feb 23, 2010 1:53 pm

Motto: "A good head and a good heart are always a formidable combination."
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Tirade wrote:
tigertracks 24 wrote:Other theories on the yellow bot appear to be Sandstorm. He's supposed to be in Rod's crew too.


This speaks volumes about the art style. The current form is a muddled mess. At this point, I'd take Wildman over Don's movie-verse style. His alternate covers have looked nice. Look at the Wreckers comic. Why can't IDW stick with that style? That's beautiful work there (both art and writing).


I agree, we should be able to tell which of the characters this is supposed to be without debate. I guess since he is not running in fear, we can assume it's an Autobot. Since Sandstorm was in the list of names of bots in issue #1 (I think), it definitely would make sense to be him, but having it be Dragstrip works too. Dragstrip, however, is moer Mirage like, and has 2 wheels per forearm, so I guess he's out.
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Re: Transformers 'Ongoing' #4 Reviewed

Postby Chaoslock » Tue Feb 23, 2010 2:39 pm

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tigertracks 24 wrote:
Tirade wrote:
tigertracks 24 wrote:Other theories on the yellow bot appear to be Sandstorm. He's supposed to be in Rod's crew too.


This speaks volumes about the art style. The current form is a muddled mess. At this point, I'd take Wildman over Don's movie-verse style. His alternate covers have looked nice. Look at the Wreckers comic. Why can't IDW stick with that style? That's beautiful work there (both art and writing).


I agree, we should be able to tell which of the characters this is supposed to be without debate. I guess since he is not running in fear, we can assume it's an Autobot. Since Sandstorm was in the list of names of bots in issue #1 (I think), it definitely would make sense to be him, but having it be Dragstrip works too. Dragstrip, however, is moer Mirage like, and has 2 wheels per forearm, so I guess he's out.


My best guess is Scoop (heavy tire on his shoulder), but the picture lacks the orange, and Scoop doesn't have a helmet.

Or maybe Sureshot?

...

This art style still needs the nametags.
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Re: Transformers 'Ongoing' #4 Reviewed

Postby Darth Bombshell » Tue Feb 23, 2010 2:41 pm

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tigertracks 24 wrote:Just so you know DB, Blurrz didn't write those in, I wrote those quotes in the review to further reference Jurassic Park.


Regardless of who said it, it really doesn't disprove my original point.
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Re: Transformers 'Ongoing' #4 Reviewed

Postby Prime Evil » Tue Feb 23, 2010 3:12 pm

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Chaoslock wrote:
tigertracks 24 wrote:
Tirade wrote:
tigertracks 24 wrote:Other theories on the yellow bot appear to be Sandstorm. He's supposed to be in Rod's crew too.


This speaks volumes about the art style. The current form is a muddled mess. At this point, I'd take Wildman over Don's movie-verse style. His alternate covers have looked nice. Look at the Wreckers comic. Why can't IDW stick with that style? That's beautiful work there (both art and writing).


I agree, we should be able to tell which of the characters this is supposed to be without debate. I guess since he is not running in fear, we can assume it's an Autobot. Since Sandstorm was in the list of names of bots in issue #1 (I think), it definitely would make sense to be him, but having it be Dragstrip works too. Dragstrip, however, is moer Mirage like, and has 2 wheels per forearm, so I guess he's out.


My best guess is Scoop (heavy tire on his shoulder), but the picture lacks the orange, and Scoop doesn't have a helmet.

Or maybe Sureshot?

...

This art style still needs the nametags.


My next guess was going to be Scoop as well. I personally really do not think it's Dragstrip since we have seen him in the previous issues and we were able to tell that it was then, Dragstrip.

See, this is why I dislike this artstyle. I can't tell one bot from the next.
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Re: Transformers 'Ongoing' #4 Reviewed

Postby RK_Striker_JK_5 » Tue Feb 23, 2010 8:01 pm

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Great... but there's still no chance in hell I'm buying this.

The art... sucks. It's muddled and confusing. I'm still pissed that the old pre-AHM series were ditched. It's vastly preferable to what's going on now.
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Re: Transformers 'Ongoing' #4 Reviewed

Postby GEEWUN » Tue Feb 23, 2010 9:25 pm

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Re: Transformers 'Ongoing' #4 Reviewed

Postby Galvatron X » Tue Feb 23, 2010 10:26 pm

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Ya know, I really like the art overall, and I know many people dont...but why does every friggin TF have to have that little "chin music" goatee (see cover 4A)??
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Re: Transformers 'Ongoing' #4 Reviewed

Postby Mechabreaker » Wed Feb 24, 2010 2:31 am

Motto: "The only good Decepticon is a deactivated Decepticon."
Weapon: Gatling Cannon
I really like this story. I've stated before that Mike Costa's writing is some of the best writing I've seen since the Furman "-ation" series runs, Costa's writing is certainly a step up from McCarthy's horrible writing, and I am definitely going to my local comic shop to pick this one up. It's about time that Thundercracker is getting an interesting characterization instead of being one of Megatron's patsies.
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Counterpunch wrote:I'll go into the street and slap someone's momma for a Leader-1 repaint.


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