IDW Transformers Drift: Empire of Stone TPB Listing on Amazon.com

IDW Transformers Drift: Empire of Stone TPB Listing on Amazon.com

Monday, January 19th, 2015 5:33am CST

Category: Comic Book News
Posted by: Va'al   Views: 23,108

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Thanks to a new listing on online retailer Amazon.com, we have a confirmed release date for the collected trade paperback version of Transformers: Drift - Empire of Stone: June 16, 2015 (currently priced at $16.50). No artwork yet, but check below for further details, including what to expect from the extras by Shane McCarthy, Guido Guidi, Stephen Baskerville and JP Bove.

DRIFT RETURNS! After leaving the Autobots in disgrace, he's now alone, on a mission to clean up the darkest depths of the galaxy - until Ratchet shows up to try to bring him home! Also contains bonus content like creator interviews, behind-the-scenes info, an art gallery, and more!

Paperback: 132 pages
Publisher: IDW Publishing (June 16, 2015)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1631402692
ISBN-13: 978-1631402692

Credit(s): Amazon.com


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Re: IDW Transformers Drift: Empire of Stone TPB Listing on Amazon.com (1640828)
Posted by triKlops on January 19th, 2015 @ 10:17am CST
Got it in my preorder list now; thanks for the link folks!
Re: IDW Transformers Drift: Empire of Stone TPB Listing on Amazon.com (1642251)
Posted by Va'al on January 23rd, 2015 @ 3:31am CST
The second piece of iTunes via IDW Publishing comics news, sees the third issue of Drift being previewed in its own three pages of Empire of Stone horror - and Ratchet's cynicism. All mirrored below, ready for the full preview next week (And a Seibertron.com review, too). Check it out!

THE STONE ARMY! The secrets of DRIFT’S past become his present-day problems… and RATCHET’S none too happy about being dragged along!


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Re: IDW Transformers Drift: Empire of Stone TPB Listing on Amazon.com (1642253)
Posted by Hans on January 23rd, 2015 @ 3:53am CST
My favorite art team in the business :)
Re: IDW Transformers Drift: Empire of Stone TPB Listing on Amazon.com (1642266)
Posted by ZeroWolf on January 23rd, 2015 @ 5:15am CST
I wonder what the chances are that somewhere down the line liokaiser could appearance
Re: IDW Transformers Drift: Empire of Stone TPB Listing on Amazon.com (1642271)
Posted by SW's SilverHammer on January 23rd, 2015 @ 6:20am CST
Aw, it cut off the part where Hellbat was about to say, to ratchet and drift, "What is a transformer? A miserable little pile of secrets!"
Re: IDW Transformers Drift: Empire of Stone TPB Listing on Amazon.com (1642304)
Posted by Optimizzy on January 23rd, 2015 @ 8:47am CST
Im not a big fan of the art. I don't dislike it though, I just guess I've become a Roche fanboy.

I don't like Mccarthy's writing though. After Barber and Roberts I find him a little pedantic. It's better than previous outings though.
Re: IDW Transformers Drift: Empire of Stone TPB Listing on Amazon.com (1642308)
Posted by Nemesis Maximo on January 23rd, 2015 @ 9:02am CST
I havn't read any of the issues, but I almost feel like getting the TPB. As much as I dislike Drift, I love me some new villains. And since we have Gigatron and Hellbat, they may be worth McCarthy's reminding us of Drift's past over and over and over again.
Re: IDW Transformers Drift: Empire of Stone TPB Listing on Amazon.com (1643501)
Posted by Va'al on January 27th, 2015 @ 2:21am CST
In other IDW Publishing Transformers news, this last week of January also sees the third chapter in the new Drift miniseries, Empire of Stone, and the full preview can be found below! Head back here tomorrow for the Seibertron.com review, and let us know what you think in the Energon Pub.

Transformers: Drift—Empire of Stone #3 (of 4)
Shane McCarthy (w) • Guido Guidi (a & c)
THE STONE ARMY! The secrets of DRIFT’S past become his present-day problems… and RATCHET’S none too happy about being dragged along!
FC • 32 pages • $3.99

Bullet points:
Ties in directly to MORE THAN MEETS THE EYE!


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Re: IDW Transformers Drift: Empire of Stone TPB Listing on Amazon.com (1643510)
Posted by BumbleDouche on January 27th, 2015 @ 3:05am CST
Just guessing, but I think Gigatron had something to say about that last comment in the final panel
Re: IDW Transformers Drift: Empire of Stone TPB Listing on Amazon.com (1644056)
Posted by Va'al on January 28th, 2015 @ 2:40pm CST
Rock-Solid
(Spoiler free-ish)



Synopsis
THE STONE ARMY! The secrets of DRIFT’S past become his present-day problems… and RATCHET’S none too happy about being dragged along!

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Oh Ratchet


Story

We've arrived at the third chapter of the four-issue mini-series following Drift, after his exile from the Lost Light, and in case you hadn't noticed... Drift is an ex-Decepticon turned Autobot with issues, gone ultra good then riddled with guilt and in search of redemption - and the search leads him to a place from his past. Got it?

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Got it


What Shane McCarthy brings to the table in this issue, other than some usual Animated-esque-via-MTMTE Ratchet sass, is a fairly decent twist on the situation as it currently stands, despite some predictable behaviour from the characters involved. Though the plot may have seemed clear from early on, we get a slightly different look at it by this point.

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Ratchlock


So if you're expecting a complicatedly weaving plot entwined with multiple layers of social commentary, this is not your port of call. What we do get, though, is yet some great interactions between pretty much all characters involved, some fairly twisted motivations reminiscent of 'bad guys' already encountered in this development of the IDWverse, and some very nicely staged action.

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Care to tango?


What I am still waiting for, really, is a clue as to how all of Empire of Stone will impact not only More Than Meets the Eye, as the solicits keep telling us, but also the wider Transformers fiction established at this point - and this issue, in Hellbat and the Stone Army, possibly hints at it all, at last.

Art

If the action is greatly staged, as Guido Guidi and Stephen Baskerville have shown us in all collaborations so far, this issue really cranks it up a notch. There's a magnificent slow build of smaller to wider layouts as the action escalates, with some truly stunning full splash pages showing off the scale of what the characters are actually playing against.

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Oh. Ok


Not to forget the gloriously gritty look of the book, and the stark contrast with some much sleeker, cleaner visuals for the main background characters under Gigatron's so-called command. John-Paul Bove's colours make sure those are not traits to be missed, and we should revel in his marvellous deployment of pigmented layers.

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Indeed


With so much action still running through so much of the issue, and the interior monologues that Drift uses to narrate and expose the story, Tom B. Long's lettering has plenty of time and space to shine - though parsimoniously used, the touches add some good voicing to exasperated characters. Cover A is a wonderfully expanded and context-free panel from the issue itself, by Guidi and Bove, while Ratchet takes the spotlight in Sarah Stone's glorious variant - see thumbnail!


Thoughts
Spoilerish ahead

The main draws of this issue, and so far the series as a whole, come down to a handful of things: first, the seriously stunningly mapped out action sequences and fight scenes, thanks to the fantastic work of the visual team working on McCarthy's script. Every issue just looks absolutely stunning and almost tangible in its grainy stoneness.

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Ok, that got me


But the possibly even bigger incentive, and one that has taken me three issues to fully grasp (heh), is the development of the relationship between Drift and Ratchet, not only as a means for the former to come to terms with his own identity issues, but for both of them to grow from where they set out with that moment as Drift left the Lost Light crew.

. :CON: :CON: :CON: ½ out of :CON: :CON: :CON: :CON: :CON:
Re: IDW Transformers Drift: Empire of Stone TPB Listing on Amazon.com (1644104)
Posted by Optimizzy on January 28th, 2015 @ 4:45pm CST
Just read this issue. Under McCarthy, Drift is such a mary sue. He makes absolutely no mistakes in this book so far. Yeah, you could say stuff he did was dumb, but did it really affect him? He's says that this is all his fault but that comes across more like false humility to me. After all, he's "got this."

Of course, lying to one's self can be considered a fault...but when you get proven correct or justified each time I get bored.

I guess I'm spoiled under Roberts who fleshed this guy out considerably. Drift made mistakes in MTMTE and they were costly ones. He was a good character. Now...ugh. I'm going to read the last one because I'm insane like that, but Empire of Stone is just words and pictures to me. No heart.

But hey, if you're into that....
Re: IDW Transformers Drift: Empire of Stone TPB Listing on Amazon.com (1644140)
Posted by Samsonator on January 28th, 2015 @ 7:33pm CST
While I'm not loving this miniseries, I am enjoying the use of Gigatron. Almost makes me want to slap some Decepticon emblems on my RiD Megatron's shoulder pads...
Re: IDW Transformers Drift: Empire of Stone TPB Listing on Amazon.com (1644163)
Posted by Optimizzy on January 28th, 2015 @ 8:14pm CST
Samsonator wrote:While I'm not loving this miniseries, I am enjoying the use of Gigatron. Almost makes me want to slap some Decepticon emblems on my RiD Megatron's shoulder pads...


I can totally agree with that. Using "Gigatron" was awesome.
Re: IDW Transformers Drift: Empire of Stone TPB Listing on Amazon.com (1644287)
Posted by Va'al on January 29th, 2015 @ 1:58am CST
Optimizzy wrote:Just read this issue. Under McCarthy, Drift is such a mary sue. He makes absolutely no mistakes in this book so far. Yeah, you could say stuff he did was dumb, but did it really affect him? He's says that this is all his fault but that comes across more like false humility to me. After all, he's "got this."

Of course, lying to one's self can be considered a fault...but when you get proven correct or justified each time I get bored.

I guess I'm spoiled under Roberts who fleshed this guy out considerably. Drift made mistakes in MTMTE and they were costly ones. He was a good character. Now...ugh. I'm going to read the last one because I'm insane like that, but Empire of Stone is just words and pictures to me. No heart.

But hey, if you're into that....


Oh, there has definitely been a massive shift in characterisation, and I doubt the issues will ever peak over a 3.5 rating in my mind, but this third one in particular has done a little more to me about giving some of heart it was seriously lacking until now.

What he really needed, I believe, was to fail that rescue run-jump-swing. That would've provided a serious lack of support for his self-assuredness, and give him a gigantic plot boost (though with serious repercussions of a fridging kind). But let's see.
Re: IDW Transformers Drift: Empire of Stone TPB Listing on Amazon.com (1644332)
Posted by Optimizzy on January 29th, 2015 @ 7:59am CST
Va'al wrote:
What he really needed, I believe, was to fail that rescue run-jump-swing. That would've provided a serious lack of support for his self-assuredness, and give him a gigantic plot boost (though with serious repercussions of a fridging kind). But let's see.


Dang. That's a good set up. I wish that happened too. At least it would make him a character rather than a "generic action hero"
Re: IDW Transformers Drift: Empire of Stone TPB Listing on Amazon.com (1649443)
Posted by Va'al on February 11th, 2015 @ 3:15am CST
Hi! Remember us? We left the interviews with comics creators lagging for a while, as life decided to settle itself, 2014 swept in and we're now ready for Combiner Wars hitting shelves in both paper, plastic and pixel format. But alongside that, we've also seen the return of one of IDW's original Transformers characters, Drift, in the hands of its originator - Shane McCarthy. Read on below for a spotlight on the Australian author of AHM!

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Va'al - Shane, it is a pleasure to talk to you for a bit, thank you for agreeing to do this! As we've done for the other creators we've interviewed, I'd like to start from the beginning - from your beginning: how did Transformers enter your life, do you remember your first interaction with the franchise?

Shane McCarthy - I absolutely do. Like most kids I was crazy about cartoons and around that time I was all about He-Man. Saturday morning was where it was at and I would get up super early to watch them all. One morning, when He-Man had finished, on comes this cartoon I'd never heard of. It opened with Cybertron in flames and I was immediately hooked. After that it was a mad dash to the toy store. The first one I ever bought was the double pack of the cassettes... Frenzy and Laserbeak I think.



Va'al - And was that also a gateway moment into collecting the toys, or were you able to keep the plastic addiction at bay (or forced to, by external factors)? Did you, or do you still, have the one that got away, or at least a very elusive toy that was really hard to get?

Shane - Well I'd already started my He-Man collection so buying toys was already a habit. What I could afford mind you; my parents would buy me some big things for Christmas (Castle Grayskull) but I had to buy the figures myself. So picking up Transformers was a natural progression.

As for the one that got away. I was crazy about Prime and Soundwave as a kid and got both of those. There's two I never got that I really wanted as a kid. Ravage, because he looked so damn cool and I never saw him again beyond when I had to make that first choice in the store. And Megatron. Although I wouldn't be after Megs these days, the actual toy doesn't look at all that hot to me.



Va'al - Starting to sense a purple pattern here, I must admit. Would you say that Ravage (or any of the other three) still holds a spot in your collector's heart? Did you continue collecting beyond your childhood and teenage years, with new iterations of the same characters?

Shane - I'd say it's really just Ravage these days; I think the concept and the design are really cool. I think I've still got Frenzy around here somewhere, I lost Laserbeak's head though.

I didn't keep collecting, no. My love of the toys spilled over into books and comics. The next time I bought a Transformer was after Beast Wars came out. Like a lot of people I dismissed Beast Wars as some sort of heretical assault on the old classics. When a friend explained how the old cartoons and Beast Wars lined up and then handed me Transmetal Optimus Primal, I was hooked again. That was a seriously cool toy.

Va'al - That often still happens with some fans, good to hear we won you over to the beast side eventually! So as you ventured from screen media and toys into comics, what were your first impressions, what caught your attention in particular?

Shane - You mean comics in general? Conan, haha. My sister bought me one at a flea market to shut me up. It had Gil Kane on art and it was glorious. From there it was into Batman and Superman then down the road the X-Men.

As far as Transformers though I started picking up the magazine format comics, the ones from the UK that Simon Furman was writing. I absolutely loved them. I remember the first story I came in on, I can't remember the issue number though. But basically Prime and Outback were battered and fighting to survive against some sort of ape creatures I think. Classic stuff.

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via TFWiki


Va'al - That sounds very much like issue #100, Distant Thunder! As an established comics reader, how long did it take from that point to entering the industry as a creator? How was that process for you?

Shane - That's the one! Man, you're good. Alan Davis on cover art too, wow.

How long did it take? Well the link says that comic came out in 1987. My first publication was Batman for DC Comics in...2005 I think so, 18 years. Yikes.

The process was an interesting one. I never even thought of becoming a writer until I was around twenty odd years old. It had never occurred to me. Once the idea struck (or was actually suggested to me) everything clicked in a way nothing ever had before. After that it was a lot of work, effort and training before I broke in with DC.

Va'al - But you did make it in the end, and you've worked on multiple characters and properties since! What I'm wondering, though, is how the IDW gig started - did they ask you to take over from Furman, or did you pitch material to them?

Shane - I was approached by Chris Ryall to take over from Simon. He'd been doing great stuff but they were wanting to move in a different direction and asked me what I would do if I took over. With the understanding that it was supposed to be a new direction, one they hoped would also appeal to a wider audience, I pitched All Hail Megatron.

Va'al - And Drift was one of the new, original appearances in the series, before he became his own full-on character, correct? We've seen the pitch for him in the recent IDW Complete Drift volume, actually - how did it feel to introduce an entirely new character to the franchise?

Shane - It was fun. I was already having a hell of a lot of fun working on AHM and it was never on my mind to bring in anything new. However when I was working on the book the idea for Drift popped into my head and I thought, why not? I've said it before but the initial pitch was me just firing off a "what if" email to Chris. He liked the idea but said Hasbro would never go for it. Turns out they loved it. Right away they mentioned the possibility of a figure which was brilliant. Apparently some people didn't believe the figure was true when Chris announced it. I still find that hilarious.



Va'al - He was also not the only lasting outcome of the AHM series, as we're still feeling some of the aftermath of those events in the current ongoings and mini-series (such as the beef between Devastator and Spike, which Costa took a step further, and Barber is currently retreading in The Transformers). How does it feel, as the plotter behind it all?

Shane - It's nice to know it's all still going forward. I don't read the books (unless I'm writing for them) but I would hope that some things have been kept and other things have changed. Like any comic book, when a new creative team comes on they need to leave their stamp. It's important everything isn't thrown out but it has to be something new otherwise what's the point?

Va'al - And that, in a way, brings us to the present day, with you returning to Drift after his presence in James Roberts' writing in More Than Meets the Eye. How does it feel to write the book now, compared to any of the three you were working on back then?

Shane - I have to say it was a mix of weird and fun. James' take on Drift was different to mine and I needed to keep that in mind as I did the mini series. I'd read through Drift's "James" appearances and got a feel for who he was there. After that I needed to think about where I wanted to take him and what I wanted to say with the character taking into account what he meant to me when I created him and what he means to me now after he'd gone through so much since AHM.

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It kind of felt like seeing a really great friend after they'd been overseas for a while. They're still your good mate but they've got a whole bunch of new hobbies and an accent.

Va'al - Was the inclusion of Ratchet as grumpy but sensible counterpart to him in Empire of Stone something that you built from the MTMTE relationship between the two, then, or entirely your initiative?

Shane - No that was absolutely from MTMTE. I loved the odd couple vibe I was getting from them and knew I needed someone to come calling from the Autobots. It was nice having it be Ratchet, someone who once hated Drift (or was at least seriously annoyed by him). Plus I knew it would make for some fun buddy cop moments.

Va'al - They do have some really good interactions, yes! And what about the other characters showing up, such as Gigatron and super obscure ones like Hellbat and the Micromasters? Are they something you have a connection to, or was it more of an editorial call?

Shane - No those were all my choices. When it comes to finding new, interesting characters that haven't been overused it can get tough so I decided to go to an expert. I went to Twitter and asked a Transformer fan, Sprite, for advice on some underused characters. I knew the kinds of characters I was looking for and she made some great suggestions of who hadn't been used in the IDW universe yet. I had a look through that list and chose the ones I liked the most. Gigatron, Hellbat and Grit all came from that list so, thanks, Sprite.

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Va'al - Fans really making an impact, then, on all accounts! Some great artists are also showing up at IDW from the fan base, but you've gone with the established team of Guido Guidi, Stephen Baskerville and JP Bove. How are you finding working with them? What do you feel their art brings to the story?

Shane - They're a fantastic team to work with. It's fantastic to be working with Guido again; I absolutely adore his artwork. After having worked together for a year on AHM it was great to get back into those familiar roles again. And JP, what a champ. Fantastic work and a great guy. I had the pleasure of signing with JP when I was at a UK con, the guy's a riot. Stephen is a new one to me but, like the others, I love what he brought to the book. Everyone is excited to be working together and we're all doing our best to put out a book that we love and hope the readers will love too.

Va'al - It is receiving its fair share of praise so far - but with only one issue left to the series, do you have any other plans in mind for Drift or the Transformers universe in general? Anything we should be looking forward to?

Shane - Not currently no. I'm really glad John [Barber] dropped me a line asking me to do this, it was a blast, but currently this looks like it's it for Transformers. Not to say something won't pop up down the line, IDW is over the moon at how well Drift is being received so you never know.

Va'al - That's a low - though hopeful - tone to be ending this chat upon, however - is there anything you'd like to say to the fans and readers out there before we bid our goodbyes?

Shane - Just a huge thank you. Thank you for reading and thank you for writing in. It's great to know people have enjoyed AHM and Drift.

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Va'al - And thank you, Shane, for taking the time to talk to us for this interview - it was great to find out more about your journey as a fan and a creator. Best of luck for future endeavours, and we'll be on the lookout for Drift #4 later this month!


You can find out more about Shane McCarthy's multiple creative lives at his website, SMAcTalk, and on Twitter. IDW Transformers: Drift - Empire of Stone is regularly reviewed on Seibertron.com - join the discussion here!

You can also read Shane's thoughts on Age of Extinction Drift here - and find out more about the latest incarnation of the character in animated series Robots in Disguise here and here.
Re: IDW Transformers Drift: Empire of Stone TPB Listing on Amazon.com (1649551)
Posted by Nemesis Maximo on February 11th, 2015 @ 10:18am CST
Man, I always had the imprssion the Mr. McCarthy was a bit of a Spaz. But after reading this, I want to pick up the TPB for Empire of Stone.
Re: IDW Transformers Drift: Empire of Stone TPB Listing on Amazon.com (1649568)
Posted by It Is Him on February 11th, 2015 @ 11:02am CST
I like this approach Seibertron is taking with news posts. More editorials. More interviews. I like it. Keep it up!
Re: IDW Transformers Drift: Empire of Stone TPB Listing on Amazon.com (1649585)
Posted by Va'al on February 11th, 2015 @ 11:34am CST
It Is Him wrote:I like this approach Seibertron is taking with news posts. More editorials. More interviews. I like it. Keep it up!


We've always had interviews and roundups (well, since Blurrz, Burn and I worked on them), but life got in the way for a bit! Will's editorials are a great idea, I agree, and much needed freshness. :D
Re: IDW Transformers Drift: Empire of Stone TPB Listing on Amazon.com (1655442)
Posted by Va'al on February 24th, 2015 @ 5:10am CST
And here it is, the final preview for mini-series Transformers Drift: Empire of Stone by IDW Publishing. What do you think will happen, what will Gigatron do, how far will Hellbat go, and how many more times will Drift remind us of his past? Find out below, read our interview with series writer Shane McCarthy here, and head back here tomorrow for the Seibertron.com review!

Transformers: Drift—Empire of Stone #4 (of 4)
Shane McCarthy (w) • Guido Guidi (a & c)
FINAL FATE! This is it—DRIFT and RATCHET show down against the STONE ARMY! Will DRIFT rejoin the AUTOBOTS—or forge a new fate in the farthest reaches of the galaxy?
FC • 32 pages • $3.99

Bullet points:
This issue’s fallout will impact TRANSFORMERS comics for years to come!
Ties in directly MORE THAN MEETS THE EYE!


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