IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review

IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review

Wednesday, December 7th, 2016 5:52pm CST

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A Statistical Analysis of 9-Ball Pocket Billiards
A Review of Revolution: Transformers: More Than Meets The Eye

Story
Spoiler-heavy, but only with fake spoilers

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review
Me Grimlock say this not happen in these stapled picture squares!

Let's get one thing straight right off the bat when it comes to this final Revolution tie-in one-shot: it's of extreme importance to both the Transformers as well as the shared Hasbro universe being created by IDW. There are stakes, meaningful actions with meaningful consequences, and more snooker references than you can fit in your pocket.

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review
As deadly serious a book as a game of Shoot Shoot Bang Bang

Now that the forewarnings have been tabled, let's take a quick snapshot of where our heroes are at the start of this issue. They are all probably, definitely, almost irrevocably dead, and definitely not coming back next week in a new issue number one. Definitely not.

With Prowl hanging out with Cerebros, Fortress Maximus, and Red Alert, that leaves the Scavengers to pick up the plot and go to Earth. Crankcase is getting set to meet up with an online chat room friend, and the Energon Goodies are chalked and ready.

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review
Nothing can ever go wrong when you've got Energon Goodies!

What they find waiting for them ends up being more than they bargained for, closing back in on a plot from the Furman-era of IDW that was long thought to be over, finished. Right on cue, things ricochet in completely unanticipated ways.

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review
Oh, well, I suppose it can.

It can't be understated how significant the main reveal of this Revolution edition of More Than Meets The Eye is. Not only does it bring back a popular but fearsome character, it neatly ties together every aspect of the crossover, closing up plot-holes and nicely calling its shot for the last ball that clears the rack and readies this universe for what's to come.

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review
I guess maybe things never go well with Energon Goodies.

There are more amazingly well placed references to other franchises than you can shake a stick at, with immediate fan favorite G.I. Joe character MP3 being assigned one of the most famous and ubiquitous of Action Force gadgets. It's moments like this one that show how well studied both authors, Nick Roche and James Roberts, are when it comes to the franchises involved in this incredibly well received event series.

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review
One of my college buddies claims to have invented the slang "obvs". To date, he has not been proven wrong since I cannot go back in time to see who else may have said it first.

The tremendous pacing of the issue allows the story time to work, with the scope of events being illustrated effectively in a way that brings some genuine emotion. For the people of Earth, things may never be the same again, especially since this is the first time any city in the United States has ever been destroyed in any way in the IDW Transformers fiction.

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review
This is probably Spike's fault.

Just when things can't seem to get any worse, the power of the crossover comes full force. The organic yet infinitely complex details of the years long build to Revolution pay off in a big way, and in one masterstroke of plotting, the entire purpose of this three month long, 13 issue event becomes as clear as the right angle for a corner shot.

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review
Got 'em.

Art

On a lighter note, Alex Milne's art is crisp throughout, with panels like the one below this paragraph conveying a fantastic sense of motion. This is not the only example of the dynamic framing and posing that takes place, and Joana Lafuente's colors help define the settings in distinctive ways. Chris Mowry handles the letters for this book, and has not only done well, but really really well in one particular instance dealing with a dire wraith. Full credits and images of all the covers are available at this link for the book in our Comics Series Resources.

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review
Whoosh!


Judgment

There's a reason this writing team is held in such high regard, and this issue again makes it clear exactly why that is. They'll always be held to the gold standard of their own creation, but will they ever come close to capturing that magic again?

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review
Private messages about this review will be promptly ignored.

I think they did, and they may have even surpassed their past achievements. We won't soon forget this one. Hold on to your butts and call your loved ones - Transformers, nay, comics themselves just changed forever.

. :HASBRO: :HASBRO: :HASBRO: :HASBRO: :HASBRO: out of :HASBRO: :HASBRO: :HASBRO: :HASBRO: :HASBRO:


(Actual review: this issue is a fantastic work of comic relief that manages to move along one major Transformers character's story line in a meaningful way. Be prepared going in to have a good time and you certainly will. Readers should also know that this issue stands alone in a way where no prior reading of other Revolution books is required. The paragraph about the art above is genuine, it's really good. 5 out of 5 is also the real score.)


This article was last modified on Sunday, December 11th, 2016 7:37am CST

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Re: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review (1846039)
Posted by Kurona on December 7th, 2016 @ 6:06pm CST
Know what?

Revolution was worth it for this.
Re: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review (1846123)
Posted by ricemazter on December 8th, 2016 @ 3:11am CST
I really liked this issue, only one of the Revolution series I've read, but there was one tiny sour point. I was kinda disappointed at the end when they left poor mp3 by himself, really surprised fulcrum has had any contact with humans.

On a positive note, this is one of those times where Robert's meta narratives really work. Unlike the last time with "swearth," the fact that this was a one shot means we aren't missing out on progress while the writer, for lack of a better word, vents. That sounded a lot more negative than I wanted it to.
Re: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review (1846152)
Posted by MrBlack on December 8th, 2016 @ 9:14am CST
ricemazter wrote:I really liked this issue, only one of the Revolution series I've read, but there was one tiny sour point. I was kinda disappointed at the end when they left poor mp3 by himself, really surprised fulcrum has had any contact with humans.

On a positive note, this is one of those times where Robert's meta narratives really work. Unlike the last time with "swearth," the fact that this was a one shot means we aren't missing out on progress while the writer, for lack of a better word, vents. That sounded a lot more negative than I wanted it to.

In defense of the Swearth issue, we did get a fair bit of character development out of Swerve, Cyclonus, and Megatron in that issue, which was more than we got out of the Thunderclash funeral two-parter, which is my personal low water mark for the series.

As for this, I think a gag issue was the perfect way for MTMTE to deal with the Revolution crossover. It's the perfect epilogue to the whole event.
Re: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review (1846154)
Posted by Big Grim on December 8th, 2016 @ 9:34am CST
MrBlack wrote:which was more than we got out of the Thunderclash funeral two-parter, which is my personal low water mark for the series.


Aw. I liked that one. It was cool seeing Skids and Nautica (sp?) dancing and chatting, Nightbeat being a cocky detective and then the aliens being beaten by an overdose of charisma for the combined power of Rodimus and Megatron. It was fun.
Re: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review (1846159)
Posted by Kurona on December 8th, 2016 @ 10:17am CST
MTMTE is one of the few fictional series I really can't pinpoint a story arc or character I didn't like. If you asked me who my least favourite character was I'd say Velocity, but only because we haven't seen that much of her compared to the other characters - I still love her!

... unless we're, ah, counting Dark Cybertron. If we are that's... that's easily the worst part. No question.
Re: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review (1846173)
Posted by MrBlack on December 8th, 2016 @ 11:41am CST
Big Grim wrote:
MrBlack wrote:which was more than we got out of the Thunderclash funeral two-parter, which is my personal low water mark for the series.


Aw. I liked that one. It was cool seeing Skids and Nautica (sp?) dancing and chatting, Nightbeat being a cocky detective and then the aliens being beaten by an overdose of charisma for the combined power of Rodimus and Megatron. It was fun.


It wasn't bad, it just felt like it should have been a single issue story rather than two. I thought the Swearth story did the contrived pop culture story better.

Kurona wrote:MTMTE is one of the few fictional series I really can't pinpoint a story arc or character I didn't like. If you asked me who my least favourite character was I'd say Velocity, but only because we haven't seen that much of her compared to the other characters - I still love her!

... unless we're, ah, counting Dark Cybertron. If we are that's... that's easily the worst part. No question.


I really enjoyed the second half of Dark Cybertron, but the first half really dragged.
Re: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review (1846180)
Posted by Big Grim on December 8th, 2016 @ 12:39pm CST
MrBlack wrote:It wasn't bad, it just felt like it should have been a single issue story rather than two. I thought the Swearth story did the contrived pop culture story better.


A fair enough assessment!
Re: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review (1846184)
Posted by carytheone on December 8th, 2016 @ 1:31pm CST
I always enjoy your writing Scotty, but this was the best part of the review...

Image
Your ass just got sacked :lol:

Anyway, I'm excited to get to the revolution. I've recently had the chance to get mostly caught up with the current comics and they've gotten very interesting and I can't wait for more ;)^
Re: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review (1846221)
Posted by Hydrargyrus on December 8th, 2016 @ 2:34pm CST
Kurona wrote:... unless we're, ah, counting Dark Cybertron. If we are that's... that's easily the worst part. No question.


No wonder...

That turns out to be the first and only IDW G1 story arc I've read (I kind of got back into Transformers around Thrilling 30). I finished it and decided IDW wasn't for me. Then I read all this great stuff and researched the story lines, and the only thing I really dislike is Optimus' fall from grace (I do like Megatron's rise, though. It somehow feels right). Now, I read this and it all makes sense. I have terrible timing. :HEADHURTS:
Re: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review (1846222)
Posted by Kurona on December 8th, 2016 @ 2:40pm CST
MagicDeath wrote:
Kurona wrote:... unless we're, ah, counting Dark Cybertron. If we are that's... that's easily the worst part. No question.


No wonder...

That turns out to be the first and only IDW G1 story arc I've read (I kind of got back into Transformers around Thrilling 30). I finished it and decided IDW wasn't for me. Then I read all this great stuff and researched the story lines, and the only thing I really dislike is Optimus' fall from grace (I do like Megatron's rise, though. It somehow feels right). Now, I read this and it all makes sense. I have terrible timing. :HEADHURTS:

Heh, yeah - I know what you mean. General rule of thumb is that Modern IDW is great but it just can't do crossovers. There's a noticeable dip in quality with Dark Cybertron, Combiner Wars and ESPECIALLY Revolution. Titans Return sort of turned out fine for me, though. I dunno, kinda liked it.
Thankfully Dark Cybertron and Titans Return are the only crossovers MTMTE is involved in (aside from this Revolution one-shot which just features a different group of characters from the main cast). MTMTE is the one people praise the most (and is the one that has Megatron; the other ongoing has Optimus) so if Optimus and the crossovers are what bothers you... MTMTE has neither of those barring Dark Cybertron. Totally give it a shot.
Re: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review (1846257)
Posted by ebonyleopard on December 8th, 2016 @ 6:05pm CST
Any comic that gets me laughing from start to finish in a world like we are currently living in today gets a five star thumbs up from me everytime. The message board gag was brilliant and the fact it was so right on the nose about the whole crossover event makes it the best crossover comic any company has ever put out, for me anyway.
Re: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review (1846323)
Posted by ScottyP on December 8th, 2016 @ 8:35pm CST
carytheone wrote:I always enjoy your writing Scotty, but this was the best part of the review...

Image
Your ass just got sacked :lol:

Anyway, I'm excited to get to the revolution. I've recently had the chance to get mostly caught up with the current comics and they've gotten very interesting and I can't wait for more ;)^
I was between that thumbnail and asking the timeless question of "Who wants a body massage?" (Also yay, finally someone got it :lol: )

Revolution is much better if you know all of the lead in material. Problem is, that's still not enough for ROM to be much more than he is, Action Man is barely in the event, and some of the least developed characters (MASK) show up a great deal. I still can't recommend Micronauts enough though. Issue 7's been the only 'eh' one so far, and that comes in right after Rev (or close to it.)
Re: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review (1846329)
Posted by Kurona on December 8th, 2016 @ 9:00pm CST
ScottyP wrote:
carytheone wrote:I always enjoy your writing Scotty, but this was the best part of the review...

Image
Your ass just got sacked :lol:

Anyway, I'm excited to get to the revolution. I've recently had the chance to get mostly caught up with the current comics and they've gotten very interesting and I can't wait for more ;)^
I was between that thumbnail and asking the timeless question of "Who wants a body massage?" (Also yay, finally someone got it :lol: )

Revolution is much better if you know all of the lead in material. Problem is, that's still not enough for ROM to be much more than he is, Action Man is barely in the event, and some of the least developed characters (MASK) show up a great deal. I still can't recommend Micronauts enough though. Issue 7's been the only 'eh' one so far, and that comes in right after Rev (or close to it.)

The thing is, a comic arc - especially one like this that exists partly to promote these comics and get people into them - should be able to stand alone without any pre-existing context. If your story absolutely requires you go through a reading list of previous material as if you're preparing for an exam, it's not a strong story.
And even then I went into it having read most of IDW's Transformers and understanding most of it; as well as all of Action Man, ROM and Micronauts. And since this is also MASK's debut the only context I hadn't read for it was G.I. Joe. And I still felt it was absolutely terrible. The only difference is that if I hadn't read the previous comics I would have no idea what was going on; but now I have I know exactly why it's bad and it feels frustrating that they've all dropped a level of quality. I understand where you're coming from, but I don't agree with "it's better if you've read the other stuff" as to me this is still the absolute low point (even below AHM) of IDW's Transformers.
Re: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review (1846337)
Posted by ScottyP on December 8th, 2016 @ 10:09pm CST
Kurona wrote: I understand where you're coming from, but I don't agree with "it's better if you've read the other stuff" as to me this is still the absolute low point (even below AHM) of IDW's Transformers.
Keep in mind I'm not saying it makes it good all around, but knowing a bit about the character of Action Man (as one example) adds some enjoyment to his one-shot. Why is he doing this? Because he can. It's a cool thing to do this evening. And that's so him. Plus Salmons in one panel bitching about not being in the crossover? Also a small, fun detail that enhances the series - but yeah, agreed I guess that it doesn't fix its problems.
Re: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review (1846343)
Posted by Kurona on December 8th, 2016 @ 10:32pm CST
ScottyP wrote:
Kurona wrote: I understand where you're coming from, but I don't agree with "it's better if you've read the other stuff" as to me this is still the absolute low point (even below AHM) of IDW's Transformers.
Keep in mind I'm not saying it makes it good all around, but knowing a bit about the character of Action Man (as one example) adds some enjoyment to his one-shot. Why is he doing this? Because he can. It's a cool thing to do this evening. And that's so him. Plus Salmons in one panel bitching about not being in the crossover? Also a small, fun detail that enhances the series - but yeah, agreed I guess that it doesn't fix its problems.

Oh the one-shots themselves are...almost all good in my opinion, I was just referring to the main series. But Transformers and TAAO were both great, G.I. Joe was... alright, Micronauts and Action Man were also cool and MTMTE couldn't be better if it tried.
I think that really pins down what was wrong with this event and why I have hope for Revolutionaries. All the one-shots (aside from MASK) showed the writers could really work well with a smaller group of characters in a simple, off-to-the-side story that did tie into the big event but was allowed to be it's own little thing. The main Revolution comic forced them to cram every single character and every single big plot point into a "THIS IS THE MOST IMPORTANT WORLD-SHATTERING EVENT EVER YOU MUST BE INVESTED" thing that currently plagues blockbuster movies and event comics. The one-shots are a good example of how the writers actually are good at their job and do love and respect the source material - at least to the extent to do well with it - as long as they aren't pidgeonholed into an event. That's the thing with IDW - went left to their own devices the writers for the most part can write incredible stories. It's just when a toyline tie-in from Hasbro forces them out of their comfort zone or when they try an event like Dark Cybertron or Revolution that's too big for their boots that things fall apart. And honestly, in their position, it's hard to imagine that going any differently. It's like asking an engineer to stop working on bridges for a few weeks to work in first-aid before going right back to their usual job.

Why do I keep writing essay-long posts about how the writers on Revolution are good but Revolution itself was not something they were prepared for
Re: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review (1846355)
Posted by Kurona on December 8th, 2016 @ 11:56pm CST
Also, in regards to MTMTE Revolution specifically; the whole comic feels like Roberts was forced by contract into being part of the event crossover and he said 'fuck it' in the most eloquent, beautiful way possible.
Re: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review (1846436)
Posted by 1984forever on December 10th, 2016 @ 10:50am CST
The "Cons4eva" dude was the worst. It's just Roberts trying to imply that there are no real Decepticons left. I feel that he's saying Autobots vs Decepticons are a thing of the past. IDW is focusing on robo-relationships now and certain elements of the fandom should just roll with it.
Re: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review (1846438)
Posted by ScottyP on December 10th, 2016 @ 11:03am CST
Y'all know there were two writers on this one, right?
Re: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review (1846658)
Posted by D-Maximal_Primal on December 11th, 2016 @ 10:46pm CST
that was a fun read. Roberts and Roche can both take some really interesting perspectives on humor, and this crossover was awesome. I liked it and Scotty gave it a great review :lol: :lol:
Re: IDW Transformers: Revolution: More Than Meets The Eye Review (1846660)
Posted by Kurona on December 11th, 2016 @ 10:53pm CST
ScottyP wrote:Y'all know there were two writers on this one, right?

Whoops... I always default to thinking it's just Roberts when it's MTMTE and not a direct crossover. My mistake, sorry Roche ^^;

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