IDW Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #45 Review

Wednesday, September 30th, 2015 8:41am CDT

Categories: Comic Book News, Reviews, Site Articles
Posted by: Va'al   Views: 25,470

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The One Where Grimlock is Possessed by Unicron
(Spoiler free-ish)



Synopsis
Make a list of every single DECEPTICON. Remove the warriors, the high-rankers, the loyal foot soldiers, the over-achievers, and anyone who’s ever made even a modest contribution to The Cause. You should now have five names left. Welcome back, guys.

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #45 Review
IN STORES NOW!!!


Story

Let's leave aside the storylines being run so far in More Than Meets the Eye, and dip into the lives and troubles of the bunch of misfits introduced all the way back when the DJD was still just a name. In issue #45, MTMTE brings back the Scavengers, Grimlock, and their ship - the Weak Anthropic Principle. Has anything changed? Read on and find out.

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #45 Review
Same here.


James Roberts knows these characters, and the Scavengers are in fact one of the best example of how he operates as a writer, giving the spotlight to minor, lesser-known faces, in order to (sometimes) address a wider narrative. That has been the case for MTMTE, but Krok, Spinister and the crew show it even more.

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #45 Review
Sounds.. sensible (goodie?)


There is a narrative, obviously, though it will feel really quite distanced from everything else currently happening in the IDWverse for the Transformers - at least until much later in the book. What I find both a positive and negative here, are the parallels with the group's first introduction to the readership, in terms of plotlines.

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #45 Review
Some parallels are wonky, fine


Nevertheless, the read is extremely enjoyable, the humour is plentiful, the characters all have their voices, and we do circle back in time for tea to the wider plots left dangling in season 1, while also exploring the single characters along the way. More thoughts overall included below.

Art

Alex Milne and Brian Shearer team up for some slick linework (layouts, pencils and inks), and the initial pages are an excellent nod to the regular ongoing issues with a Scavenger spin (check out this article, too). The flexibility and dynamism of the different styles condensed in the opening alone are enough to reinforce the rep of the visual team of the book - and it only continues strong from there.

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #45 Review
Just a matter of..


The visual team, of course, also features the excellent work that Joana Lafuente brings to the colours, complementing and complimenting the lines and inks that the artists provide. Shading, mood, tone, and the same dynamism of layouts are accentuated and made even more lush to look at throughout.

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #45 Review
ScAVengERs


There is a specific running gag relating to the Scavengers, too, and Tom B. Long's work is the only means of achieving it - which is a nice recognition of the importance of lettering in the medium, even to convey humour. As for covers, the main recurring group shot by Milne and Josh Perez stand triumphant, as Nick Roche and Josh Burcham take on cover B (thumbnailed) a little less seriously. We've seen Kei Zama and Yamaishi's take on MTMTE's big baddies of the past too, but still pretty, yes?


Thoughts
Spoilerish ahead

This issue is definitely filler material, until it's not. Not entirely, at least. But until that point, a lot of what you're reading is predominantly Roberts enjoying his own writing skills with a bunch of misfits, and their interactions, dragging in popular culture references and callbacks (though much less so than the Swerve issue from a couple of months ago). It's a fun romp, with exceptional visuals, and both good characterisation and well-placed twists.

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #45 Review
ANGER GOOD?


However, and I realise this may just be me, so far it just sort of hangs there, at the periphery of the wider story, much like the first time we came across the WAP and its crew. The next issue will undoubtedly fill us in more, given that last sequence and last page, but I kept finding myself thinking about the overall relevance of the issue in terms of narrative. Think of it as a bottle-episode, with a twist, if you will. It may be more your thing.

. :CON: :CON: :CON: ½ out of :CON: :CON: :CON: :CON: :CON:

Credit(s): IDW, Va'al


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Re: IDW Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #45 Review (1730134)
Posted by Noideaforaname on September 30th, 2015 @ 9:57am CDT
*hasn't gotten the issue yet*
*reads "Thoughts", which makes it sound kinda the same as the last string of issues have been --not great*
Oh boy.
Re: IDW Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #45 Review (1730143)
Posted by Va'al on September 30th, 2015 @ 10:21am CDT
Noideaforaname wrote:*hasn't gotten the issue yet*
*reads "Thoughts", which makes it sound kinda the same as the last string of issues have been --not great*
Oh boy.


This is my opinion entirely. I am welcoming discussion because of how little I effectively cared about the story other than the funny (and really quite so) moments throughout. Someone please tell me I'm wrong, and show me why!
Re: IDW Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #45 Review (1730151)
Posted by Randomhero on September 30th, 2015 @ 10:57am CDT
It's not a bad issue. It's just another "meh, it's fine" issues. Sadly that's pretty much how this whole year -post elegant chaos-has been. It's just a lot of filler and I guess tying up loose ends?

In the words of Immortan Joe, "mediocre!"
Re: IDW Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #45 Review (1730156)
Posted by D-Maximal_Primal on September 30th, 2015 @ 11:19am CDT
How I feel about the end of the issue

http://vignette3.wikia.nocookie.net/dra ... 0921164818
:BOT:
Re: IDW Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #45 Review (1730186)
Posted by MaverickPrime on September 30th, 2015 @ 1:54pm CDT
I just finished reading it and I say it's a good issue, it actually made me laugh, not just giggle, however, I feel it burns quickly, maybe like it was cut a little short.
I like the characters and how they interact, but unlike the misadventures of the Lost Light crew, we don't see them nearly as much, I wanna know the full stories!
Re: IDW Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #45 Review (1730205)
Posted by Optimizzy on September 30th, 2015 @ 4:02pm CDT
well I liked it. Made me want to read more, just like it should I think.
Re: IDW Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #45 Review (1730231)
Posted by Noideaforaname on September 30th, 2015 @ 7:00pm CDT
Va'al wrote:This is my opinion entirely. I am welcoming discussion because of how little I effectively cared about the story other than the funny (and really quite so) moments throughout. Someone please tell me I'm wrong, and show me why!

Hmmm. I've noticed quite a few people --die-hard fans-- haven't been as fond of these last issues, this whole season even. Not like Prime where people rather quickly snapped from "love" to "hate", but still pretty disheartening.

Kinda feels like we're just coasting on "James Roberts is the best thing ever!" at times....
Re: IDW Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #45 Review (1730251)
Posted by D-Maximal_Primal on September 30th, 2015 @ 8:17pm CDT
I'm still really liking it. Megatron's story is a huge highlight that I am greatly enjoying. Also, we started off with frikkin slaughterhouse and elegant chaos, so really it's hard to beat that, except for long lead up to a big event, which in this case may be the DJD v. Lost Light :BOT:
Re: IDW Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #45 Review (1730284)
Posted by Optimizzy on September 30th, 2015 @ 10:28pm CDT
Well this storytelling is subtle. To be honest the only thing I feel at the end of an issue is a desire to read more. I hate that they end. I really can't think of a better praise. There are so many little developments in each issue that when you look at them separate you go "ok, so?" But then 5 issues down the line they come into play so big and (here's the kicker) so logically, that you are blown away. It's all very "after the fact". We are seeing a very meticulously designed slow buildup and I hope, I HOPE that he can continue to do so without interruption. Other series can handle the toy tie ins and the face paced cartoon action. MTMTE is character driven. And I thinking needs its time to build.
Re: IDW Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #45 Review (1730289)
Posted by D-Maximal_Primal on September 30th, 2015 @ 10:33pm CDT
Optimizzy wrote:Well this storytelling is subtle. To be honest the only thing I feel at the end of an issue is a desire to read more. I hate that they end. I really can't think of a better praise. There are so many little developments in each issue that when you look at them separate you go "ok, so?" But then 5 issues down the line they come into play so big and (here's the kicker) so logically, that you are blown away. It's all very "after the fact". We are seeing a very meticulously designed slow buildup and I hope, I HOPE that he can continue to do so without interruption. Other series can handle the toy tie ins and the face paced cartoon action. MTMTE is character driven. And I thinking needs its time to build.

Agreed so much. The Swerve story line for example: it started BEFORE MTMTE WAS STARTED. It led up to issue 43. It took almost 4 YEARS, 4 YEARS! for the storyline to play out fully, and it led straight to a DJD footnote and a Swerve whose character is in question by himself. This series is subtle, not in your face most of the time, and it's working so well :BOT:
Re: IDW Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #45 Review (1730318)
Posted by Va'al on October 1st, 2015 @ 2:37am CDT
Optimizzy wrote:Well this storytelling is subtle. To be honest the only thing I feel at the end of an issue is a desire to read more. I hate that they end. I really can't think of a better praise. There are so many little developments in each issue that when you look at them separate you go "ok, so?" But then 5 issues down the line they come into play so big and (here's the kicker) so logically, that you are blown away. It's all very "after the fact". We are seeing a very meticulously designed slow buildup and I hope, I HOPE that he can continue to do so without interruption. Other series can handle the toy tie ins and the face paced cartoon action. MTMTE is character driven. And I thinking needs its time to build.


I do agree, and I know there will be a good pay-off eventually.

But this issue in particular just felt like a series of gags, linked together by name, fame and really good art. I'm not saying it doesn't feed into the wider story, but my feelings of reading it (three times, for review purposes) was just 'heh' and a smirk.
Re: IDW Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #45 Review (1730358)
Posted by D-Maximal_Primal on October 1st, 2015 @ 8:55am CDT
Va'al wrote:
Optimizzy wrote:Well this storytelling is subtle. To be honest the only thing I feel at the end of an issue is a desire to read more. I hate that they end. I really can't think of a better praise. There are so many little developments in each issue that when you look at them separate you go "ok, so?" But then 5 issues down the line they come into play so big and (here's the kicker) so logically, that you are blown away. It's all very "after the fact". We are seeing a very meticulously designed slow buildup and I hope, I HOPE that he can continue to do so without interruption. Other series can handle the toy tie ins and the face paced cartoon action. MTMTE is character driven. And I thinking needs its time to build.


I do agree, and I know there will be a good pay-off eventually.

But this issue in particular just felt like a series of gags, linked together by name, fame and really good art. I'm not saying it doesn't feed into the wider story, but my feelings of reading it (three times, for review purposes) was just 'heh' and a smirk.

Never a bad thing though, especially since a little (or not so little) someone comes bursting in right at the end :BOT:
Re: IDW Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #45 Review (1730366)
Posted by Va'al on October 1st, 2015 @ 9:16am CDT
D-Maximus_Prime wrote:
Va'al wrote:
Optimizzy wrote:Well this storytelling is subtle. To be honest the only thing I feel at the end of an issue is a desire to read more. I hate that they end. I really can't think of a better praise. There are so many little developments in each issue that when you look at them separate you go "ok, so?" But then 5 issues down the line they come into play so big and (here's the kicker) so logically, that you are blown away. It's all very "after the fact". We are seeing a very meticulously designed slow buildup and I hope, I HOPE that he can continue to do so without interruption. Other series can handle the toy tie ins and the face paced cartoon action. MTMTE is character driven. And I thinking needs its time to build.


I do agree, and I know there will be a good pay-off eventually.

But this issue in particular just felt like a series of gags, linked together by name, fame and really good art. I'm not saying it doesn't feed into the wider story, but my feelings of reading it (three times, for review purposes) was just 'heh' and a smirk.

Never a bad thing though, especially since a little (or not so little) someone comes bursting in right at the end :BOT:


The comic should not rely on 'right at the end' as much as it does. It has been doing that a lot.
I much preferred TF#45 to this one, with its gradual reveals rather than last page twist.
Re: IDW Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #45 Review (1730369)
Posted by D-Maximal_Primal on October 1st, 2015 @ 9:25am CDT
Va'al wrote:
D-Maximus_Prime wrote:
Va'al wrote:
Optimizzy wrote:Well this storytelling is subtle. To be honest the only thing I feel at the end of an issue is a desire to read more. I hate that they end. I really can't think of a better praise. There are so many little developments in each issue that when you look at them separate you go "ok, so?" But then 5 issues down the line they come into play so big and (here's the kicker) so logically, that you are blown away. It's all very "after the fact". We are seeing a very meticulously designed slow buildup and I hope, I HOPE that he can continue to do so without interruption. Other series can handle the toy tie ins and the face paced cartoon action. MTMTE is character driven. And I thinking needs its time to build.


I do agree, and I know there will be a good pay-off eventually.

But this issue in particular just felt like a series of gags, linked together by name, fame and really good art. I'm not saying it doesn't feed into the wider story, but my feelings of reading it (three times, for review purposes) was just 'heh' and a smirk.

Never a bad thing though, especially since a little (or not so little) someone comes bursting in right at the end :BOT:


The comic should not rely on 'right at the end' as much as it does. It has been doing that a lot.
I much preferred TF#45 to this one, with its gradual reveals rather than last page twist.

Even so, I really feel that we are expecting a lot after Elegant chaos. We're back to a little bit more fun stuff like issues 9-13 in my eyes, which is ok, need to slow down some so we can pick speed back right up. I doubt we're gonna get to the DJD anytime soon. Gotta wait out Defensor's return to the lost light :BOT:
Re: IDW Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #45 Review (1730370)
Posted by ScottyP on October 1st, 2015 @ 9:27am CDT
Va'al wrote:The comic should not rely on 'right at the end' as much as it does. It has been doing that a lot.
I much preferred TF#45 to this one, with its gradual reveals rather than last page twist.
I can understand that view, but I like the "hook 'em at the end" approach personally. I think for stories like MTMTE where, until plans change, they're set to go on without end work well for that type of teasing. It's like WWE storytelling - it never really ends, and you better watch next time/Sunday/JOHNCENA. Only it's with robots, and it's consistently good.

Plus it keeps us all chatting up about these issues in between releases, which IDW sometimes spaces out in torturous intervals. Probably also helped on this issue knowing that it was a two-parter going in, figured there'd be some hook on the last page and wasn't disappointed.
Re: IDW Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #45 Review (1730375)
Posted by MrBlack on October 1st, 2015 @ 9:52am CDT
The issue was entertaining enough, but I really can't judge it until I see the rest of the story. It seems Roberts is tying it to the broader story by bringing Fort Max in at the end, but I want to see how it plays out.

It would not surprise me to see a couple of the Scavengers end up returning to Luna 1 with Fort Max, to aid in Grimlock's recovery. Misfire, it seems, is invested in his well-being, and I could see Spinister tagging along, since it would make sense to put a brilliant surgeon in the most advanced medical lab in the galaxy if you're planning on "fixing" Grimlock. And that leaves the rest to take over Demus' business, something I'm sure Krok, at least, would want.
Re: IDW Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #45 Review (1730387)
Posted by Nemesis Maximo on October 1st, 2015 @ 10:56am CDT
Fortress Ma...Fortress Ma...

Shit's about to get really real.
Re: IDW Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #45 Review (1730457)
Posted by D-Maximal_Primal on October 1st, 2015 @ 8:49pm CDT
Nemesis Maximo wrote:Fortress Ma...Fortress Ma...

****'s about to get really real.

that's what I thought! Full blown escalation right there! :BOT:
Re: IDW Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #45 Review (1730480)
Posted by Nemesis Maximo on October 1st, 2015 @ 9:57pm CDT
D-Maximus_Prime wrote:
Nemesis Maximo wrote:Fortress Ma...Fortress Ma...

****'s about to get really real.

that's what I thought! Full blown escalation right there! :BOT:

I mean, I was expecting Star Saber. But I feel this is somehow worse, especially given the affiliation of the Scavengers.
Re: IDW Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #45 Review (1730493)
Posted by D-Maximal_Primal on October 1st, 2015 @ 11:26pm CDT
Nemesis Maximo wrote:
D-Maximus_Prime wrote:
Nemesis Maximo wrote:Fortress Ma...Fortress Ma...

****'s about to get really real.

that's what I thought! Full blown escalation right there! :BOT:

I mean, I was expecting Star Saber. But I feel this is somehow worse, especially given the affiliation of the Scavengers.

Yeah, If that was Star Saber, I would have been all like "Holy Bejezus!", but instead it is Fort Max, and that is all "HOLY FRIKKIN SCHCABOLI NUTS BATMAN!!!" :BOT:

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