IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review

IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review

Wednesday, March 29th, 2017 6:22am CDT

Categories: Comic Book News, Reviews
Posted by: ScottyP   Views: 28,349

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Do Go 'Round Tonight
A Review of Transformers: Lost Light #4

As spoiler-free as I can make it. Probably. I tried.
Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review
The next mission begins!

The latest chapter of the massive, sweeping Transformers ongoing comics arrive this week, with two very different stories gracing shelves. One is Till All Are One #8, which judging from sales numbers is the best Transformers comic that Transformers fans don't read and you should feel bad about that. The other is the subject of this review, Lost Light #4. We're in the middle of a story arc that's six issues deep, and now we're past the halfway point. How are things shaping up with our heroes scattered about and in various states of misadventure?

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review
The light begins to shine

Simultaneously, situations improve and decline across the three main plots of this issue. There's "Team Rodimus", stranded on Functionist Cybertron to take up one of these main plot lines, and with the agonizing cliffhanger of issue 3 get ready for, well, another cliffhanger. It's in the best of ways though if I'm honest about it. Anyone that watches Game of Thrones knows that sometimes an ending that leaves you unsatisfied for now, where you want to know more and see more and figure out what might happen next, can be a good ending. It means that you're wrapped up in something compelling, and when the attention of the book turns to this plot my eyes are glued to the page in anticipation and wonderment.

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review
Behold: Super close-cropping to avoid a spoiler

Back on Necroworld, which may or may not be in the "main" universe of the Transformers and Hasbro Universe books, there are two plot threads running through this issue. One of them is action packed and oozing with plot progression and character moments, and that's the one featuring Cyclonus, Whirl, Tailgate, and a recently awakened nemesis in Killmaster. This also ends on a cliffhanger - a good, effective one that leaves me wanting to read more. While it's not certain, it definitely seems that things aren't going to end well here, but then again, Cyclonus told us so in February of 2012 in the pages of More Than Meets The Eye #2, didn't he?

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review
Why are dad and dad fighting?

Then there's the argument in my head over whether or not the argument above really needed to happen here. After taking time and pursuing a more thoughtful analysis, it does. The visual storytelling in surrounding panels justifies the space, not to mention it makes sense for the characters involved. It progresses some long running plots in various ways, and is called back to effectively later in the issue.

Then there's the third small plot that's moved along in this issue, involving Anode and Lug. I've been a defender of these characters' inclusion and development for this arc, but their purpose is now fuzzy whereas it didn't feel that way earlier. The additional backstory is nice, and building up new characters is great, but something about the three pages given to these two newer arrivals missed the mark. The point is clear, the event that happened to end the scene is sure to be relevant later, and there is genuine purpose to all the words. None of that's really critical, of course, so what gives? It certainly wasn't the visuals, which were handled wonderfully by Jack Lawrence and Joana Lafuente's always sublime Necroworld color palette.

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review

What it may be is a very purposeful usage of too many words. If you look at the roughly one-third of a page shown above, it doesn't have many words by the end, yet so much is said. The "new" Megatron, defined.

Were Lug's actions supposed to be ours?

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review
The Last Action Master

Aside from the already mentioned Lawrence and Lafuente, there's the return of Tom B. Long on letter work. As usual, Long's work is fantastic and I don't have enough superlatives to describe it. Nick Roche and Josh Burcham again provide an outstanding cover fitting thematically with their other variant covers from the series so far, but a special mention needs to go to Alex Milne and Josh Perez's cover featuring Megatron and Terminus. This right here is frame-worthy.

As always, you can find full credits and covers in our database entry for Lost Light #4, along with a list of characters that appear in the issue (sometimes pretty early on release day depending on my alarm clock) so do be aware of possible spoilers.

Verdict
Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review

Scores don't feel fair to big multi-part works. The more this goes on, the more it's clearly intended to be read all together as a six issue story. To be fair, Mr. Roberts has more-or-less directly pointed this out, or that's at least how I took it. That element holds this issue back a bit, but only a bit. Be sure to pick this one up and head back here to speculate about the future here on our forums by replying to this post.

. :CYBERTRON: :CYBERTRON: :CYBERTRON: :CYBERTRON: out of :CYBERTRON: :CYBERTRON: :CYBERTRON: :CYBERTRON: :CYBERTRON:


Bonus! James Roberts' soundtrack suggestions for this issue:
  • Nils Frahm - "You"
  • The New Pornographers - "The Bleeding Heart"
  • Interpol - "Next Exit (Stay)"

Encore Bonus! Uniclock Update:
I'm going to be reviewing this series for the site for a while, and some of you can guess why this is. I'm moving our Lost Light/Hasbro Comics Universe Doomsday Clock, the Uniclock, ahead one minute. After reading the issue you may think this is a bit over-conservative, but at least for right now, well, in John Barber I'll choose to trust and assume the slow burn will remain slow for awhile longer as stated in the linked Twincast interview with him. We'll see how long though. Another issue with this many signs and it's going to start to look like we'll find out the answer to the question "Where do you go?"

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review


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Re: IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review (1870157)
Posted by Randomhero on March 29th, 2017 @ 6:33am CDT
I love the watchmen clock but this is not the series for it. What just happened in TAAO justifies a doomsday clock even more because HOLY SH**!!!

I really enjoyed the issue a lot. It has some positives, some negatives. The art is lovely, I think both stories are very interesting sadly it's waaaaaaay too talky even for Roberts. Especially since some of the conversations have happened in previous issues and entire pages are spent revealing something 1. People have already figured out or 2. Just didn't need an entire page to relay. Seriously the Megatron/Rodimus argument is almost 2 full pages and is something we've already read once or twice.

Again, not all bad but for me the bads are pretty heavy when they come on.
Re: IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review (1870162)
Posted by ScottyP on March 29th, 2017 @ 7:33am CDT
Randomhero wrote:I love the watchmen clock but this is not the series for it. What just happened in TAAO justifies a doomsday clock even more because HOLY SH**!!!

I really enjoyed the issue a lot. It has some positives, some negatives. The art is lovely, I think both stories are very interesting sadly it's waaaaaaay too talky even for Roberts. Especially since some of the conversations have happened in previous issues and entire pages are spent revealing something 1. People have already figured out or 2. Just didn't need an entire page to relay. Seriously the Megatron/Rodimus argument is almost 2 full pages and is something we've already read once or twice.

Again, not all bad but for me the bads are pretty heavy when they come on.
Liege Maximo is one of the big reasons I moved that thing up despite what Barber told me. The stuff in this issue of LL could just be foreshadowing/tongue in cheek, though that also seems unlikely.

I was of the same mind on the Megs/Rodimus scuffle over the weekend (when we get our review copies) but after a couple other slow, careful re-reads I changed my tune. The point, to me, was that they're taking way too much time they don't have for a silly repetitive argument, and the slow build of the blue light around them gives that sense of "hey, HEY dudes, stop!" If you imagine it as a TV scene maybe it works better?

Alternately, I talked myself into liking it. :)
Re: IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review (1870163)
Posted by Randomhero on March 29th, 2017 @ 7:49am CDT
ScottyP wrote:
Randomhero wrote:I love the watchmen clock but this is not the series for it. What just happened in TAAO justifies a doomsday clock even more because HOLY SH**!!!

I really enjoyed the issue a lot. It has some positives, some negatives. The art is lovely, I think both stories are very interesting sadly it's waaaaaaay too talky even for Roberts. Especially since some of the conversations have happened in previous issues and entire pages are spent revealing something 1. People have already figured out or 2. Just didn't need an entire page to relay. Seriously the Megatron/Rodimus argument is almost 2 full pages and is something we've already read once or twice.

Again, not all bad but for me the bads are pretty heavy when they come on.
Liege Maximo is one of the big reasons I moved that thing up despite what Barber told me. The stuff in this issue of LL could just be foreshadowing/tongue in cheek, though that also seems unlikely.

I was of the same mind on the Megs/Rodimus scuffle over the weekend (when we get our review copies) but after a couple other slow, careful re-reads I changed my tune. The point, to me, was that they're taking way too much time they don't have for a silly repetitive argument, and the slow build of the blue light around them gives that sense of "hey, HEY dudes, stop!" If you imagine it as a TV scene maybe it works better?

Alternately, I talked myself into liking it. :)


I get that with the clock. Threw me off with being on here

I didn't hate the conversation, it just went on way too long and just said stuff megs has already been accused of and everything.

Still confused lug

I guess she was the spark that died and Anode created her in her mind out of guilt but man if that's it okay but , it's not very original especially since we have that relationship with starscream and bumblebee in TAAO and it's been done way better in other comic books.
Re: IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review (1870164)
Posted by Kurona on March 29th, 2017 @ 7:53am CDT
The Megatron/Rodimus did take me out of it a little and I'm glad it was brought up. I wasn't entirely sure if I liked it or not; it did make sense and both of these characters' possible ulterior motives did need to be addressed, but at the same time it kinda feels like Rodimus and Megatron's relationship had progressed past this point. Maybe I shouldn't underestimate 4 million years of war :roll:

And I think you also summed up my feelings on Anode and Lug. I love these two to death, but something about their inclusion felt out-of-place and separate compared to everything else going on at the moment.

... god, I feel weird being this critical of my favourite series and an issue I actually liked. Someone give me some cute Chromedome and Rewind art
Re: IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review (1870165)
Posted by Randomhero on March 29th, 2017 @ 8:12am CDT
I don't think Megatron has an ulterior motive in the slightest. I feel rodimus is completely out of line. Megatron did at one point and he admitted it to Ravage that he was delaying his trial, that's why he had the briefcase but after their first visit to the Necroworld he abandoned it. Ravage revealed Megatron admitted he can't delay and hide from the inevitable, he needs to face it.

Megatron is just doing what's right and I like Magnus's line in the comic after the argument when Megatron is laying out strategies.
Re: IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review (1870170)
Posted by ScottyP on March 29th, 2017 @ 8:26am CDT
Kurona wrote: Someone give me some cute Chromedome and Rewind art
I really want to keep talking comics but responsible adult things are calling (work), but I can do this at least:
Image
Re: IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review (1870181)
Posted by Kurona on March 29th, 2017 @ 8:46am CDT
ScottyP wrote:
Kurona wrote: Someone give me some cute Chromedome and Rewind art
I really want to keep talking comics but responsible adult things are calling (work), but I can do this at least:
Image

Extremely good. Keep this up and Va'al may just have competition for my favourite.
Re: IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review (1870264)
Posted by Va'al on March 29th, 2017 @ 12:32pm CDT
Kurona wrote:
ScottyP wrote:
Kurona wrote: Someone give me some cute Chromedome and Rewind art
I really want to keep talking comics but responsible adult things are calling (work), but I can do this at least:
Image

Extremely good. Keep this up and Va'al may just have competition for my favourite.


TFA Anode.

Image
Re: IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review (1870287)
Posted by SureShot18 on March 29th, 2017 @ 1:41pm CDT
I love how Anode's alt mode is a Cybertronian biplane.
Re: IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review (1870299)
Posted by Randomhero on March 29th, 2017 @ 2:25pm CDT
SureShot18 wrote:I love how Anode's alt mode is a Cybertronian biplane.



As if Minimus Ambus's mustache wasn't hipster enough :roll:
Re: IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review (1870437)
Posted by Va'al on March 30th, 2017 @ 2:34am CDT
Burn can be so sweet some times (him on the left, me on the right).

Image
Re: IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review (1870439)
Posted by Burn on March 30th, 2017 @ 2:43am CDT
Just for clarification, because he only said some times.

I still hate you all. :-P
I need to get me a new Whirl.
Re: IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review (1870442)
Posted by Va'al on March 30th, 2017 @ 3:25am CDT
Burn wrote:I need to get me a new Whirl.


You're replacing me?! :(
Re: IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review (1870444)
Posted by Burn on March 30th, 2017 @ 3:43am CDT
Va'al wrote:
Burn wrote:I need to get me a new Whirl.


You're replacing me?! :(

Are you made of plastic and smell bad?
Re: IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review (1870447)
Posted by Va'al on March 30th, 2017 @ 4:06am CDT
Burn wrote:
Va'al wrote:
Burn wrote:I need to get me a new Whirl.


You're replacing me?! :(

Are you made of plastic and smell bad?


...definitely not. ;;)
Re: IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review (1870472)
Posted by D-Maximal_Primal on March 30th, 2017 @ 8:01am CDT
Va'al wrote:
Burn wrote:
Va'al wrote:
Burn wrote:I need to get me a new Whirl.


You're replacing me?! :(

Are you made of plastic and smell bad?


...definitely not. ;;)

That's... probably up for debate. ;)

The problem is: the forum admin is right. I can totally see that style of relationship between you 2.

Also Burn: Pretty sure my target still has some Whirls, or at least they still did 2 weeks ago. I can get you a plastic replacement that smells better and doesn't have a sarcastic-laden voice :D
Re: IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review (1870597)
Posted by bodrock on March 30th, 2017 @ 4:39pm CDT
ScottyP wrote:
Kurona wrote: Someone give me some cute Chromedome and Rewind art
I really want to keep talking comics but responsible adult things are calling (work), but I can do this at least:
Image



LOVE DIS :x

I'm trying to catch-up to Lost Light as fast as I can to avoid spoilers here....but honestly, I did "read" MTME on tfwiki prior to buying all the TPBs! So now, seeing the great art and the events play out on the page is easier to follow along, even if it has been slightly spoiled.

Speaking of Whirl though, I still only have his G1 incarnation -- I wish I had gone Generations for an update. I'm also considering that Henkei classics set of Tailgate & Swerve....
Re: IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review (1870599)
Posted by Burn on March 30th, 2017 @ 4:43pm CDT
D-Maximus_Prime wrote:Also Burn: Pretty sure my target still has some Whirls, or at least they still did 2 weeks ago. I can get you a plastic replacement that smells better and doesn't have a sarcastic-laden voice :D

Found a very good priced one on E-Bay and snapped him up (Thanks though).

What can I say, every time I read Whirl in Lost Light I'm reminded of Stinky times and that I really need to get a Whirl that could be kept inside.
Re: IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review (1871842)
Posted by WreckerJack on April 5th, 2017 @ 2:53am CDT
We have discovered Jeff Haas has done an interview with James Roberts about the Lost Light comic. James Roberts talks about his writing process and ideas for the series. The way he speaks about his work really shows how dedicated he is to the series.

"The first few drafts of the script are usually in longhand – I have a tower of notebooks full of my barely legible handwriting. I refine the dialog when typing everything up, and then edit it all again by hand" - James Roberts


The article also touches on the characters and stories along with James Robert's thoughts. It is an interesting read because you get a feel for how deep the story is. He also shares his ideas about some of the characters in both MTMTE and Lost Light.

"Anode, being a totally new character – and someone who was unfamiliar with our regulars and their backstory ... I wanted a driven, funny, independent, ebullient, cheeky new character, with a unique set of skills.” - James Roberts


If you enjoy Transformers: Lost Light, make sure you check out our archive!
Re: IDW Transformers: Lost Light #4 Review (1871874)
Posted by Kurona on April 5th, 2017 @ 8:37am CDT
"[Anode] was going to cross paths with the crew of the Lost Light under the mutineer Getaway’s command, as opposed to being rescued by the time-traveling Necrobot. I was in a bit of a bind when MTMTE ended, because it ended on the mother of all cliffhangers: the main cast, and the planet on which they’d been left stranded by Getaway, had apparently blown up. So, they were dead, their ship had been stolen, they were falling behind on their quest … I had an obligation with Lost Light to pick up where I’d left off, but it was far from a neat jumping on point for new readers. Anode, being a totally new character – and someone who was unfamiliar with our regulars and their backstory – was my way of re-introducing all the series’ key concepts without it being too clunky."

This is very interesting. I just knew Revolution and the title change had fucked up things somehow and this demonstrates exactly how.


"After the Dissolution arc we’re following a smaller group of characters to a place we’ve mentioned more than once but never actually visited,” according to Roberts. “After that, we catch up with Getaway and his fellow mutineers – the titular Lost Light finally makes an appearance."

Hey D-max~

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