Review of IDW Transformers: Lost Light #6

Review of IDW Transformers: Lost Light #6

Wednesday, June 7th, 2017 3:44am CDT

Categories: Comic Book News, Reviews, Site Articles
Posted by: ScottyP   Views: 20,383

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Deckard's Toad
A Review of Transformers: Lost Light #6

Free of any explicit spoilers, but be forewarned some may be implied.
Transformers News: Review of IDW Transformers: Lost Light #6
Caught up? Good.

Hype is a fickle beast. Comic publishers, writers, artists, and other creators need it to drive sales. Sites like the one you're on, right here at Seibertron.com, need to communicate this hype via solicitations, a slow drip of cover art, and back issue sales as a service to our readers as this ends up being the medium through which information on upcoming books is disseminated. The net effect is positive until this hype becomes unrealized upon a product's release.

While that might sound like a foreboding portent of a negative review, it isn't. It's time for Lost Light #6, and it's time for you to check the hype at the door because there's bound to be something in store you didn't see coming. Don't disappoint yourself, and give a dose of empathy to the awesome creators bringing these stories and their hype to you every month.

Transformers News: Review of IDW Transformers: Lost Light #6
It is tempting to not get to the point of the review, I agree

The crisis on Functionist Cybertron comprises the main story line given focus within this issue. There are only so many pages to wrap up a plethora of plot points, and a series of cleverly sequenced events along with a twist that feels right out of Attack on Titan helps this issue deliver on most of these points. The action is fast, furious, and even the dialogue in between avoids going over-long. There's a melancholic moment involving Ratchet and Rung that's so typical of Ratchet's life that it's heart-wrenching, which makes a parallel moment later in the issue deliver a very well-timed and uplifting beat.

Transformers News: Review of IDW Transformers: Lost Light #6
Can we not? Or maybe do it quickly?

The Anode story has been controversial with fans of the book, with many readers enjoying it and many others ready for it to wrap up as soon as possible. I'll admit I actually started in the former camp and ended up in the latter. There is a satisfying conclusion to what can be described as a story that introduces the character of Anode in a detailed way throughout the course of a portion of six issues. It is a story with a poignant message, honest emotion, and internal conflict you can empathize with. The ultimate point of it now seems clear, dangerous as it is to assume you really know anything in a James Roberts Transformers story. That point also makes sense within other events going on. On top of that, this also has another thing going for it: the pages focusing on Anode provide a spot to stop and breathe a little when your heart gets racing from the other action in the book.

With all of that noted, something about Anode's story didn't hit the mark. Having the earlier issues paint Anode as not necessary sympathetic might have caused that for me. Additionally, I found there to be one point in this issue where it ground the pacing to an awkward halt before it picked up again shortly thereafter. This is the most subjective part of this whole review, as there's a great deal of objectively positive material within this backup story, so my slightly empty feeling upon reading this part of the book will not apply to all readers.

Transformers News: Review of IDW Transformers: Lost Light #6
I see what you did there and will tell our glorious Captain of your treachery.

Getting back to the main story of the issue, this continues to paint Rung, Rodimus, and Megatron as the three main characters of "Dissolution". It could well be argued that (Megatron's absence pre-More Than Meets The Eye 28 aside) these are also the three main characters of the series, and Rodimus does get ample time in Lost Light 6 as the captain of a stranded crew trying to get back to the first place in which they were stranded. He's under a lot of stress and it starts to bubble up to the surface in the most Rodimus-like ways you could imagine. There are times you'll cheer for him and times you'll be disappointed like your parents were when your report card wasn't up to muster despite you working very hard that one semester. His growth from here as a character seems to be approaching a tipping point, and it feels like we'll know for certain before the year's out whether or not Rodimus is fulfilling his legacy by starring in his Bildungsroman (of a sort since age is weird with Transformers), or if he's going to be a more tragic figure.

Transformers News: Review of IDW Transformers: Lost Light #6
Keep talking. No, seriously, I want to read more of your words.

The final pages of the issue create one of those moving experiences that has driven the massive following and respect that James Roberts has earned as a writer. Megatron's been on an odyssey for the last four years on our calendars. To say that this has been a remarkable, fulfilling, thought provoking journey would be an understatement. It continues here in a meaningful manner and is set up by an unexpected plot twist, all the while presenting challenges to traditional science fiction notions of the standards by which to judge the intrinsic value of non-human lives. Some of you saw the twist coming, while others will be blinded by phrasing that doesn't fit the common vernacular of their politics and won't look under the surface for the universally positive themes, but if one or both of those applies to you there's at least a visual gag along the way for you to enjoy.

There's one thing that I think all Transformers fans will agree on, and that is that the last panel is positively joyful.

Or is it absolutely terrifying?

What did I say about agreeing on it?

Transformers News: Review of IDW Transformers: Lost Light #6
Actually, this doesn't need words.

Jack Lawrence's art has rounded into form quite nicely as this series has progressed. He works well with the layouts provided and brings depth to scenes, especially in wider shots where a sense of scale and distance is important. Joana Lafuente's colors assist with this in a big way, and some special call out is in order for the fantastic use of lighting and contrast between scenes and environments. There was one point in this issue where the layout didn't fit the significance of the moment, when a particular 'bot fighting off a moon ceases to be able to do so. This could have used a bigger panel and perhaps the earlier mentioned backup story could have taken a step back to provide room for such moments, but it's not a cause of any major detriment in the grand scheme of things.

Tom B. Long is masterful as usual on lettering. Some of Megatron's lines in particular stood out as having a cadence thanks to the layout of the speech bubbles that made them more effective. One thought, over to another, over to another, and then back around to the point without going in circles. Brilliant stuff that I won't directly post here to avoid spoilers.

There are several great cover options, such as the main Jack Lawrence cover (serving as this review's news story thumbnail) with colors by Lafuente, as well as a fantastically detailed piece from Alex Milne and Josh Perez, rounded out with a ten-copy incentive cover by Marcelo Matere that oozes the tone of Hasbro toy packaging art from another time in the best way. As always, you can find full credits for the issue in our Vector Sigma Database page for Transformers: Lost Light #6, but do note it does contain a character appearance list that some may consider a spoiler.

Verdict
Transformers News: Review of IDW Transformers: Lost Light #6
No, you go read it yourself!

I was probably harsher on Lost Light 5 than I needed to be. That's in light of having the totality of "Dissolution" now available to take a look through. This sixth issue is a great ending to a good chapter of a still phenomenal overall story. Personally, I found "Dissolution" to be held back by some pacing issues. Room to breathe is nice, of course, there were just times it felt closer to being given room for a nap.

On the whole, the negatives end there. This chapter of the quest moves the plot along in a significant way, continues the meaningful character work that's a staple of the series, and will have you ready for more.

Lost Light 6 in particular is the best issue out of the first six, and gives readers at least one moment they'll never forget while setting up a tight canvas for what's to come. Be sure to catch this one and the rest of "Dissolution", and subscribe to the series through some paid method if you like it. Support is important.

. :CYBERTRON: :CYBERTRON: :CYBERTRON: :CYBERTRON: and 1/2 out of :CYBERTRON: :CYBERTRON: :CYBERTRON: :CYBERTRON: :CYBERTRON:


Bonus! James Roberts' soundtrack suggestions for this issue:
  • Damien Jurado - "Cloudy Shoes"
  • The Scotland Yard Gospel Choir - "Everything You Paid For"
  • Tom Brosseau - "Favourite Colour Blue"
  • Sixpence None The Richer - "I Won't Share You"

Credit(s): IDW


This article was last modified on Wednesday, June 7th, 2017 3:47am CDT

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Re: Review of IDW Transformers: Lost Light #6 (1887570)
Posted by Bounti76 on June 7th, 2017 @ 3:56am CDT
Maybe I need to go back and reread the entire arc, but that ending just screamed "COPOUT!!" to me. Of course Megatron won't face justice in his home universe! That would end his character development!. Though, while typing that, I realized that it's probably why it was done. Still, I saw he and Terminus staying in the Functionist Universe coming from an alternate universe away.

Second question/point/discussion starter: Will Anode's resurrecting Lug mean that we're going to get a lot of dead characters back? Because while that's tempting to want to bring Skids and others back, it would COMPLETELY negate the emotional impact of their deaths.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers: Lost Light #6 (1887571)
Posted by Bounti76 on June 7th, 2017 @ 4:01am CDT
Also, just commenting on the link to the news story near the end of the review.......I thought neither profitability nor popularity was the issue with TAAO- Scott said that issue 12 was the profitability point and that it was the higher-ups at IDW who asked her to do a new story and she said no because she didn't want to write something that her heart wasn't into. But I'll continue that in the TAAO thread
Re: Review of IDW Transformers: Lost Light #6 (1887579)
Posted by Va'al on June 7th, 2017 @ 5:03am CDT
Bounti76 wrote:Maybe I need to go back and reread the entire arc, but that ending just screamed "COPOUT!!" to me.



See, the first reaction I had with ScottyP as we discussed the review was: Now *that* is an ending. Much like you, I also expected Megatron to not make it out of the Functionist universe, though not like this, admittedly. I also agree that the 'facing justice' point may be developed further, given the cover for next issue, featuring Megatron and Ultra Magnus parting ways with a handshake. Whatever that may mean.


As for your second point - I agree. A lot.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers: Lost Light #6 (1887580)
Posted by Kurona on June 7th, 2017 @ 5:03am CDT
MTMTE is back.

That's all I could think when I finished this issue. It's been a very bumpy ride to get here, and as Scotty notes there's certainly a fair share of negatives; but this is where I feel my favourite comic can once again take the throne. It's funny - right as TAAO's announced to be ending, Lost Light gets good again. There's some sort of conspiracy in there...
Re: Review of IDW Transformers: Lost Light #6 (1887589)
Posted by Randomhero on June 7th, 2017 @ 6:07am CDT
I hated it. There's no other way to put it. I hated this story and disliked this entire issue. Only thing I walked with after finishing it was "well he's not staying there that's for sure."

Like last issue I said the was a whole series convenient coincidences and that honestly should be the title of the trade. I found the entirety extremely weak and not a good first story to this relaunch.


Great art from jack. I'll give it that.

Now to wait and see how Roberts juggles dealing with the fact that this story is over 5 months behind the regular continuity of everything else and see how that pans out.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers: Lost Light #6 (1887592)
Posted by Randomhero on June 7th, 2017 @ 6:30am CDT
Kurona wrote:MTMTE is back.

That's all I could think when I finished this issue. It's been a very bumpy ride to get here, and as Scotty notes there's certainly a fair share of negatives; but this is where I feel my favourite comic can once again take the throne. It's funny - right as TAAO's announced to be ending, Lost Light gets good again. There's some sort of conspiracy in there...


What I thought at the end was "okay? So what the hell was the point of introducing functionalist-verse Annode?" She did absolutely nothing! Her contribution to that part of the story was utterly meaningless. Clicker did more! A laser pointer was more valuable
Re: Review of IDW Transformers: Lost Light #6 (1887597)
Posted by Kurona on June 7th, 2017 @ 6:48am CDT
Randomhero wrote:Clicker did more! A laser pointer was more valuable

That's a little bit functionist
Re: Review of IDW Transformers: Lost Light #6 (1887609)
Posted by ScottyP on June 7th, 2017 @ 8:12am CDT
I just really enjoyed that Glitch is one of the bots sitting around listening to Megatron at the end. It made me laugh!
Re: Review of IDW Transformers: Lost Light #6 (1887642)
Posted by william-james88 on June 7th, 2017 @ 10:18am CDT
ScottyP wrote:I just really enjoyed that Glitch is one of the bots sitting around listening to Megatron at the end. It made me laugh!


Yeah, I caught that too, it was really neat!
Re: Review of IDW Transformers: Lost Light #6 (1887643)
Posted by Randomhero on June 7th, 2017 @ 10:18am CDT
ScottyP wrote:I just really enjoyed that Glitch is one of the bots sitting around listening to Megatron at the end. It made me laugh!


That April fools joke of autobot Kultur might happen after all
Re: Review of IDW Transformers: Lost Light #6 (1887715)
Posted by william-james88 on June 7th, 2017 @ 3:10pm CDT
I really look forward to this issue, and I am curious about the twists it holds. The one thing I wanted to say is that while I like how Lawrence draws some characters, there are exagerations from him that bug the hell out of me. Like Chromedome's wheels. Yeesh, those things are enormous and they are very distracting and hard to take the script seriously whenever Chromedome appears. Thats my main beef.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers: Lost Light #6 (1887716)
Posted by Cyhwuhx on June 7th, 2017 @ 3:12pm CDT
Bounti76 wrote:Maybe I need to go back and reread the entire arc, but that ending just screamed "COPOUT!!" to me. Of course Megatron won't face justice in his home universe! That would end his character development!. Though, while typing that, I realized that it's probably why it was done. Still, I saw he and Terminus staying in the Functionist Universe coming from an alternate universe away.

Second question/point/discussion starter: Will Anode's resurrecting Lug mean that we're going to get a lot of dead characters back? Because while that's tempting to want to bring Skids and others back, it would COMPLETELY negate the emotional impact of their deaths.


Considering Rung's "ability", it seems we now have an entire Necroworld full of bots waiting to be re-contructed cold. But since the Necrobot himself is out, this will probably mean only bots that got the rite.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers: Lost Light #6 (1887859)
Posted by pie-man on June 7th, 2017 @ 11:30pm CDT
A little heart-wrenching & melancholic.... I've really gotten to love the character of Megatron and I'm kinda sad.

That being said, with TAAO being canceled, I wonder if we'd get a new monthly title featuring Megatron, Terminus and alternate-Rung, Anode (& possibly Orion Pax) set in Functionist Cybertron. I think there are some great stories that can be told from that Universe.

And heck, considering its been nearly a year (?) since we heard about Prowl, Red Alert & Fort Max on Luna 2... I don't want to wait that long between issues to find out what Megs has been upto.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers: Lost Light #6 (1887879)
Posted by Rodimus Prime on June 8th, 2017 @ 2:54am CDT
Throughout IDW (and even the entire Aligned Universe) we read about how Megatron led a revolution "way back then." Him organizing an uprising in the Functionist Universe might be a way of us getting to see him actually doing it in present time? (I haven't read any of LL yet, I'm just going on the tidbits of info I catch now and then. I'm waiting for the TPB so I can read the whole story all at once. It makes Roberts' sub-par writing a bit easier to tolerate.)
Re: Review of IDW Transformers: Lost Light #6 (1887888)
Posted by Kurona on June 8th, 2017 @ 6:04am CDT
In retrospect this scene takes on very different meaning. God damn it.
Image
Re: Review of IDW Transformers: Lost Light #6 (1887899)
Posted by ScottyP on June 8th, 2017 @ 7:42am CDT
Rodimus Prime wrote:I'm waiting for the TPB so I can read the whole story all at once.
I sat down and re-read LL 1-6 last night and I completely recommend taking them in during one sitting.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers: Lost Light #6 (1888100)
Posted by D-Maximal_Primal on June 8th, 2017 @ 7:36pm CDT
I'm sort of with Randomhero on this. I felt it was subpar, and even though I liked the Megatron stuff, that is about the only bit that really felt good. I would personally give the overall arc a 2.5 out of 5. It didn't feel good, it felt flat, and I agree with lots of the points brought up about Anode. That just should not have happened. would have removed a bad character, freed up more pages to deal with things that needed more pages, and would also remove the whole "Rung can make crystals, Anode can fashion them, baboom, entire race resurrected" idea (not that it will happen)
Re: Review of IDW Transformers: Lost Light #6 (1888137)
Posted by ricemazter on June 8th, 2017 @ 9:38pm CDT
Randomhero wrote:
Kurona wrote:MTMTE is back.

That's all I could think when I finished this issue. It's been a very bumpy ride to get here, and as Scotty notes there's certainly a fair share of negatives; but this is where I feel my favourite comic can once again take the throne. It's funny - right as TAAO's announced to be ending, Lost Light gets good again. There's some sort of conspiracy in there...


What I thought at the end was "okay? So what the hell was the point of introducing functionalist-verse Annode?" She did absolutely nothing! Her contribution to that part of the story was utterly meaningless. Clicker did more! A laser pointer was more valuable


As far as I can tell, functionist Anode is in the story because almost all of her character development takes place away from arc's action. Roberts needs to introduce this new character, tell the audience what she's all about, and introduce her emotional baggage, but he can't integrate her into the main plot because she wouldn't have anything to do in the functionist universe. So, he places an alternate version of her in the functionist universe (the arc's A-story), so that the time devoted to her in the B-story doesn't seem out of place. In my opinion, it doesn't work.

Overall, I found this arc to be pretty sub-par. It definitely feels like the entire point of the functionist universe was to get Megatron off the crew of the Lost Light (which I totally called), while setting up a ton of potential B-stories, only one of which is resolved during this arc. One weird thing I've noticed about Robert's writing: he makes it very obvious what exactly he wants to do in structuring a story and then sometimes bends the plot over backwards to make that happen.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers: Lost Light #6 (1888222)
Posted by Rodimus Prime on June 9th, 2017 @ 7:54am CDT
ScottyP wrote:
Rodimus Prime wrote:I'm waiting for the TPB so I can read the whole story all at once.
I sat down and re-read LL 1-6 last night and I completely recommend taking them in during one sitting.
Yeah, I learned this lesson with "Dying of the Light." I read them individually, and kept thinking "WTF? This sux!" until I got to the showdown with Tarn and Megatron, but then I got the TPB and read it all at once and it went much better. Roberts is still very overrated IMO.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers: Lost Light #6 (1889045)
Posted by william-james88 on June 13th, 2017 @ 12:04am CDT
I am reading back on stories I missed and one of them was when the lost lighters were chasing brainstorm through time.

I am really confused by this scene below where Cyclonus kicks Tailgate out of the blue. Why does he do that?


Image

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