IDW Transformers: Unicron #1 Review

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Unicron #1 Review

Wednesday, July 11th, 2018 7:39PM CDT

Categories: Comic Book News, Reviews
Posted by: D-Maximal_Primal   Views: 12,580

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Not Gonna Die Tonight
A Seibertron.com somewhat Spoilerish Review of IDW Transformers: Unicorn Issue #1


The Darkest Hour has come. Optimus Prime stages a desperate gamble as the world-eater, Unicron, approaches Windblade’s homeworld—but that’s just the appetizer. The main course is Cybertron (with a side of Earth)... and it’s starting to look like no force in the galaxy can stop the end from coming.


Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Unicron #1 Review
Death surrounds
My heartbeat’s slowing down


Story

So here we are at last, the end of a dream, the end of 14 years of Transformers, the end of the longest running Transformers comic series in history. And here it goes out not with a bang nor a whimper. It goes out spectacularly and in glorious Big Screen Milne-D TV (that's a 2D 3D joke folks).

But we'll get to art later. First, let's focus in on the story shall we?

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Unicron #1 Review
I won’t take this world’s abuse
I won’t give up, I refuse!


The story is sort of odd, but also pretty spectacular all in one. I will start with the odd: With the final Chapter of The Falling, over in IDW's Optimus Prime book, has not yet finished, meaning this book spoils some things but also sort of feels at odds, like you jumped into the action a bit too soon, like the first part of a 3 part finale from a TV show came before the 3rd to last episode. It may be a bit jarring, but that is hardly the book's fault.

Something that is also a bit strange is how this issue just feels like a slightly larger, more violent version of Unicron #0. Which I mean, that isn't necessarily a bad thing, considering the amount of action and Beast Wars cameos we get (though add a sin for only cameos at this point). But it also is a bit weird playing the script again. But at least (redacted as it is a spoiler, see the final thoughts)*.

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Unicron #1 Review
The last thing I heard was you whispering goodbye
And then I heard you flat line


That all being said, we still get a great and fun story. Something you might not have seen coming, and shown pretty much front and center on the front of the page, is the comparison between Optimus Prime and Unicron. In many ways, these 2 characters are quite similar. And in this issue, we get plenty of Optimus, though we are still in the early days of Unicron, but that's OK! We are building up, as Unicron is building himself up, and I have to say, the 2nd half of the book had some pretty awesome things about Unicron.

All the character moments we get as well are incredible. Dirge, the Mistress, Soundwave and ROM, even Pyra Magna at the end. The characters are driving the story as much as the pictures and action on the page, and to that end, Barber once again delivers the goods.

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Unicron #1 Review
We're gonna fight for us together


See final thoughts for 1 more story thing that is best left unsaid at this juncture.

Overall though, good story, slightly repetitive, but still freshened some, and ready to speed onward to the final 5 issues. And we even get a Furmanism!

Art

What would a comic be without art you might ask? It would be a book that's what. And while books are cool, comics drawn by Alex Milne and colored by Sebastian Cheng are even better. These 2 guys right here? They kill the book. They kill the book almost as well as Unicron killed the colonies and Wheeljack! (too soon?...)

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Unicron #1 Review
They can’t keep their chains on me
When the truth has set me free


The art, as to be expected on a Milne book, is fantastic. Bold lines, insane attention to detail, not a wide shot or a background missed. And the work on Unicron is the 2nd half of the book is awesome, properly great, kinda like the Transformers version of Bosch's Visions of Hell (maybe a spoiler, depends if you've seen that). The whole book is filled with great detail, great character moments, both story and art wise, and some great backdrops, even if we are literally in space for half the issue.

The coloring really helps bring out all those details too. I envy not a person who has to color Milne art, but Cheng did an amazing job, stellar. All the detail Milne provided was intricately carved out in detail and wonderful colors. He made the fires burn bright and the darkness nearly consume the reader themselves.

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Unicron #1 Review
When life pushes me I push harder
What doesn’t kill me makes me stronger


And the art would not be complete without our resident Letterer, Tom B. Long. Long still kills the varied speech patterns, and I love the colors and fonts chosen for Unicron. He also is one of the best at making sure you miss as little art as possible while catching your necessary speech bubbles.

For even more information, you can check out our Unicron database entry for this issue

Final Thoughts
Majorly spoilerish ahead

Transformers News: IDW Transformers: Unicron #1 Review
We’re gonna stand and fight forever


Ok, so as promised from the story section, the final 2 notes before we plunge on:

1) We are pretty much out of filler. Cybertron is next, and the action is going to only heat up from here. Both we and Unicron had the appetizers, it's time for the giant main course guys.

2) Starscream. oh man Starscream. It feels good to have him around for this final push of the storyline. And once again, it's just the way Milne draws him, but the Steve Blum just oozes all over the speech bubbles. This is the Starscream we've always needed in a comic, Transformers: Prime personified in a "G1" comic. It is brilliant.

With that, I wrap things up with this: This is the end, the great finale, the Unicron event that will end a universe, as Unicron's actually pretty rarely do. And the threat is large, it has power, it isn't showing weakness, it isn't showing any cliches, and it knows that only a few, if any, can truly have that happy ending. Heroes will fall, the action will heat up even more, the pace will pick up even more. The final enigma of the universe will be solved.

It is a great read, a part 2 if you will to the Free Unicron #0, one that provides a bit new, repeats some stuff, but still kills you with what it is intended to do. Great job here, let's keep shooting to the stars (so long as Unicron doesn't eat them).

:BH-PREDACON: :BH-PREDACON: :BH-PREDACON: :BH-PREDACON: out of :BH-PREDACON: :BH-PREDACON: :BH-PREDACON: :BH-PREDACON: :BH-PREDACON:


PS: in case you're interested, I felt this song was perfect for this issue. (Obviously)
Credit(s): IDW Publishing, D-Maximus_Primal@Seibertron
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Re: IDW Transformers: Unicron #1 Review (1970456)
Posted by The Lonely Cracker on July 11th, 2018 @ 9:03pm CDT
glad to know i'm not the only person that likes that song
Re: IDW Transformers: Unicron #1 Review (1970459)
Posted by D-Maximal_Primal on July 11th, 2018 @ 9:09pm CDT
D R E W wrote:glad to know i'm not the only person that likes that song

I'm really glad someone can appreciate the music/lyrics/references I tag into my reviews. It is a great some, and perfect for the issue itself. there is gonna be a high body count...
Re: IDW Transformers: Unicron #1 Review (1970501)
Posted by ZeroWolf on July 12th, 2018 @ 2:10am CDT
Not in a place where I can click on the link so what is that song? Good to know things are starting well in unicron. Good review dmax!
Re: IDW Transformers: Unicron #1 Review (1970516)
Posted by Va'al on July 12th, 2018 @ 5:51am CDT
ZeroWolf wrote:Not in a place where I can click on the link so what is that song? Good to know things are starting well in unicron. Good review dmax!


Skillet - Not Gonna Die!
Re: IDW Transformers: Unicron #1 Review (1970523)
Posted by ZeroWolf on July 12th, 2018 @ 7:03am CDT
Thanks Va'al :-)
Re: IDW Transformers: Unicron #1 Review (1970650)
Posted by D-Maximal_Primal on July 12th, 2018 @ 6:20pm CDT
Va'al wrote:
ZeroWolf wrote:Not in a place where I can click on the link so what is that song? Good to know things are starting well in unicron. Good review dmax!


Skillet - Not Gonna Die!

I kinda want to lay claim to the other 5 Unicron issues as well simply because I have a line of Skillet songs lined up for reviews, and I think most if not all line up greatly with Unicron!

As for other thoughts of mine on the issue other than those in the review, I know we haven't seen Dirge in a bit, but I was still sad to see him bite the dust.

Also, the scenes inside Unicron were fantastic. I love how he uses the inhabitants of the planets he's eaten as his immune system, all fused together and such. Maybe we'll see a part Wheeljack Antibody.

Also looking forward to learning more about Unicron.
Re: IDW Transformers: Unicron #1 Review (1971257)
Posted by AllNewSuperRobot on July 15th, 2018 @ 5:24am CDT
See, I don't have the context of the other books, nor do I know who some of these characters are. To me this was Average. The visual-only Beast Wars cameos are completely wasted. The Dirge scene was pointless, I thought he died around AHM?. As a principal BW fan, seeing Not-Rampage did nothing for me, as with the other wordless cameos. What did annoy me is much like the squandered potential of The Gathering/Ascending we have BW2 & Neo characters practically vomited over the page.

Alas, Unicron's Galactus-lite dialogue continues...

To be honest, as I've mentioned before since there is no herald this time, I think it would be much better to learn nothing more about Unicron. Without him suddenly breaking into out of character monologue, he should just do his thing and remain an enigma in at least one continuity.

Note: I will stick around for one more issue, as they didn't have Prime pull some God-Bot BS to turn the tide. Long may that continue. 2.5/5
Re: IDW Transformers: Unicron #1 Review (1971265)
Posted by ZeroWolf on July 15th, 2018 @ 6:18am CDT
If prime did anything to turn the tide, it will be in issue 6, I'm fully expecting earth to be the last colony standing
Re: IDW Transformers: Unicron #1 Review (1971266)
Posted by AllNewSuperRobot on July 15th, 2018 @ 6:28am CDT
Hopefully he is dead before then. IDWverse began by subverting TF lore after all. It would be nice if they give that a nod at the end of this continuity.
Re: IDW Transformers: Unicron #1 Review (1971268)
Posted by Va'al on July 15th, 2018 @ 6:48am CDT
Isn't it fun to have fun people contributing to a fun conversation.
Re: IDW Transformers: Unicron #1 Review (1971273)
Posted by AllNewSuperRobot on July 15th, 2018 @ 7:30am CDT
Va'al wrote:Isn't it fun to have fun people contributing to a fun conversation.



Always. Likewise isn't it fun to occasionally remember that the Transformers is the story of an entire race, not just a Trukk >:oP
Re: IDW Transformers: Unicron #1 Review (1971274)
Posted by Va'al on July 15th, 2018 @ 7:39am CDT
Vaguely spoilery for people who haven't been following the comics in their chronological order up to now!

[spoiler]So, Unicron - in light of the recent happenings in Optimus Prime, and with another issue out this week exploring Shockwave's endgame in all this, a question:

- if Primes aren't actually real (they are, but not as everyone has seen them until now), but a creation of Shockwave's to support a narrative, but Unicron is, how do we reconcile the various mythologies at the core of the belief system in the IDW TF universe? How does the Guiding Hand fit into all of it?

and an addition:

- the Maximals, part of Liege Maximo's army, are not from Eukarys (which is now gone), but are still beastformers - how does that work?[/spoiler]
Re: IDW Transformers: Unicron #1 Review (1971275)
Posted by AllNewSuperRobot on July 15th, 2018 @ 7:43am CDT
Those questions were part of my thinking also. By hamfisting the tired Primus/Unicron creation myth into this story, albeit in a couple of panels, it actually created plot holes that wouldn't have existed otherwise.
Re: IDW Transformers: Unicron #1 Review (1971278)
Posted by ZeroWolf on July 15th, 2018 @ 8:14am CDT
I don't know about that...even taking away primus/unicron, unicron is tied to Cybertron still because otherwise, why the message? Theres still room to maneuver with these things, after all we still need to find out where Prime found out all that stuff from the first page.
Re: IDW Transformers: Unicron #1 Review (1971279)
Posted by Va'al on July 15th, 2018 @ 8:21am CDT
ZeroWolf wrote:I don't know about that...even taking away primus/unicron, unicron is tied to Cybertron still because otherwise, why the message? Theres still room to maneuver with these things, after all we still need to find out where Prime found out all that stuff from the first page.


I don't think it's ever really put down as myth though, is it? Just saying that Unicron vs Primus was a thing from the past, and - I speculate - probably mythologised upon a little.

As for the latter - we'll probably see more in OP ongoing, the scheduling for this is all outta whack.
Re: IDW Transformers: Unicron #1 Review (1971295)
Posted by ZeroWolf on July 15th, 2018 @ 10:18am CDT
It's mind boggling that this schedule was okayed, I know for some it's the journey rather than the destination but it does ruin the revelations a bit.
Re: IDW Transformers: Unicron #1 Review (1971369)
Posted by Daniel Adkins on July 15th, 2018 @ 6:11pm CDT
AllNewSuperRobot wrote:See, I don't have the context of the other books, nor do I know who some of these characters are. To me this was Average. The visual-only Beast Wars cameos are completely wasted. The Dirge scene was pointless, I thought he died around AHM?. As a principal BW fan, seeing Not-Rampage did nothing for me, as with the other wordless cameos. What did annoy me is much like the squandered potential of The Gathering/Ascending we have BW2 & Neo characters practically vomited over the page.

Alas, Unicron's Galactus-lite dialogue continues...

To be honest, as I've mentioned before since there is no herald this time, I think it would be much better to learn nothing more about Unicron. Without him suddenly breaking into out of character monologue, he should just do his thing and remain an enigma in at least one continuity.

Note: I will stick around for one more issue, as they didn't have Prime pull some God-Bot BS to turn the tide. Long may that continue. 2.5/5

Well of course you aren’t going to care about the events of the finale if you didn’t actually read the stuff that came before. You don’t care about the deaths Mad-Eye Moody, Tonks and Lupin, Dobby, or Hedwig if you start reading Harry Potter at the Deathly Hallows.
Re: IDW Transformers: Unicron #1 Review (1971494)
Posted by ScottyP on July 16th, 2018 @ 8:38am CDT
Va'al wrote:Vaguely spoilery for people who haven't been following the comics in their chronological order up to now!

[spoiler]So, Unicron - in light of the recent happenings in Optimus Prime, and with another issue out this week exploring Shockwave's endgame in all this, a question:

- if Primes aren't actually real (they are, but not as everyone has seen them until now), but a creation of Shockwave's to support a narrative, but Unicron is, how do we reconcile the various mythologies at the core of the belief system in the IDW TF universe? How does the Guiding Hand fit into all of it?

and an addition:

- the Maximals, part of Liege Maximo's army, are not from Eukarys (which is now gone), but are still beastformers - how does that work?[/spoiler]
I used to have faith these questions would be answered, but now I'm not so sure. It's plausible the answer ends up entirely being "just because" as it relates to the Maximals.
Re: IDW Transformers: Unicron #1 Review (1971521)
Posted by ZeroWolf on July 16th, 2018 @ 10:35am CDT
I think it is going to be a strong case of "just because" for a lot of questions.
Re: IDW Transformers: Unicron #1 Review (1971546)
Posted by Va'al on July 16th, 2018 @ 12:16pm CDT
Which I'm quite happy to be fine with - I don't need all the answers, I'm okay with that - just an extra question buzzing around my head.
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