Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #22

Transformers News: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #22

Wednesday, August 8th, 2018 3:32AM CDT

Categories: Comic Book News, Reviews, Site Articles
Posted by: Va'al   Views: 9,325

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...fallen?
(Spoiler free-ish)



Synopsis
END OF THE ROAD! Trapped between Shockwave’s attack and Unicron’s onslaught, Optimus and the Autobots struggle to make sense of what’s left of their world. Shockwave reveals ancient truths—as an old friend tries to reconnect with Cybertron.


Transformers News: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #22
just, generally


Story
The Falling is over, now comes the fallout. As we pick up the pieces of what took place during the latest story arc in the Optimus Prime ongoing, we also finally connect to the story continuing over in the mini-series that is the Unicron event finale - even with the lateness and repercussions that this has, more so than previously in this book specifically.

Transformers News: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #22
err.. surprise?


Other than the return of both Optimus Prime and Bumblebee, with the former's troubled and questioning ethical and personal issues about how the entire universe may be right in not being that happy with him or Cybertron after all, both being utterly spoiled by now by the Unicron book, there are some interesting aspects of returning characters and intersecting universes that work well in the issue.

Transformers News: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #22
heads up: recap puns


In particular, we get to see how Rom is involved in the situation at hand (before the events of Unicron #0), along with many of the other characters previously seen in the Hasbro Universe and still/back on Earth since they were last shown in the series in recent months. And, for someone who mildly enjoyed the titular series, there was some stand out, emotional beats that entirely justify the inclusion in the story.

Transformers News: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #22
...


There are other peaks in terms of how the extremely large cast is being placed in relation with one another. Pyra Magna in particular leans even further into her role, as played pretty much against every major Cybertronian - something that will continue in Unicron - Bumblebee being used as exposition in the best way possible, and Optimus pretty much just taking it all in for the whole book, his silence actually quite tangible.


Art

Sara Pitre Durocher is the sole artist on the issue this time, and her work on the eyes of the characters (as well as what seems to be thicker inks, to me) is what stands out in particular on the page. From the very opening of Optimus' awakening, running through several close-ups, the layouts bring us closer and closer in to the story and how it's affecting the characters

Transformers News: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #22
starting point


I am still impressed by how much of the series' tone has been given by the tonalities that Josh Burcham brings to his colours, which mark it as its own unique thing even when different artists are concerned, and this issue is no exception to that. With the multiple different settings and scenarios, the lighting strikes just right, and some on staff didn't even realise the artist had changed again!

Transformers News: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #22
cold


As for the lettering from Tom B. Long, we only have a couple of particularly visible elements of font work, but the script is one of those exceptions to Barber's style which don't take captions to tell the story, and rather rely on dialogue - meaning that the job may not be as striking, but the careful laying out of the speech bubbles is meticulously done, and precisely on point.

In terms of covers, you can find all three in full size in our database entry, but the Pitre-Durocher one in the thumbnail in particular highlights my point about this book's character focus, while the Zama/Burcham main variant dwells on the story.

Thoughts
Spoilerish ahead
What initially seemed to be mostly exposition, as I pointed out above with Bumblebee, and as is partially also true with Shockwave, is also deployed by Barber really quite effectively as it sets in motion a number of cogs that the book itself remarks upon, though quite subtly, and it's probably the most intriguing hook from an issue that would otherwise be utterly flattened by knowing the general conclusion - and which may be the sole biggest fault of the book.

Transformers News: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #22
*curses against scheduling*


On the other, very positive hand, it was a pleasure to see how Rom and other Hasbro Universe characters and storylines are being brought in finally without it feeling like a strain. Dinobots, Jazz, the Council and Marissa, Trypticon, the colonists on Earth - all pieces being set up for the next in the game, which OP's removal from the conversation actually shows how much his presence can be a hindrance to their development. (That sentence itself may have foreshadowing hues on what is left of this story.)

. :CYBERTRON: :CYBERTRON: :CYBERTRON: :CYBERTRON: - out of :CYBERTRON: :CYBERTRON: :CYBERTRON: :CYBERTRON: :CYBERTRON:
Credit(s): IDW
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Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #22 (1977260)
Posted by ZeroWolf on August 8th, 2018 @ 5:30am CDT
Good review, and I love that artwork there of Shockwave talking about Eurakris and Antila. I just can't fathom how the scheduling got this messed up.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #22 (1977265)
Posted by Va'al on August 8th, 2018 @ 5:42am CDT
ZeroWolf wrote:Good review, and I love that artwork there of Shockwave talking about Eurakris and Antila. I just can't fathom how the scheduling got this messed up.


Thanks!

Admittedly, this was more as a big picture weird scheduling. It's not something to do with things being too late or missed releases, it just happens to work weird leading into the Unicron stuff (which was bound to come out for FCBD from the start, from what I know).
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #22 (1977269)
Posted by ZeroWolf on August 8th, 2018 @ 5:58am CDT
Va'al wrote:
ZeroWolf wrote:Good review, and I love that artwork there of Shockwave talking about Eurakris and Antila. I just can't fathom how the scheduling got this messed up.


Thanks!

Admittedly, this was more as a big picture weird scheduling. It's not something to do with things being too late or missed releases, it just happens to work weird leading into the Unicron stuff (which was bound to come out for FCBD from the start, from what I know).

I see, I have to wonder when they were sat planning this out, if this was the best worst approach. Given what they wanted to cover in Unicron 0#, they must have resigned themselves to certain events loosing impact.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #22 (1977325)
Posted by Ms. Trebuchette on August 8th, 2018 @ 1:20pm CDT
Everything being sort of spoiled was totally worth it for that one panel where that one character was doing the most important thing EVER with her right arm.

*swoon*
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #22 (1977334)
Posted by AlphaBass on August 8th, 2018 @ 1:39pm CDT
I'm....actually kinda happy I'm annoyed at Optimus. That's some really good writing there.

Didn't think I'd side with Pyra, but.....yep.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #22 (1977343)
Posted by Va'al on August 8th, 2018 @ 2:18pm CDT
AlphaBass wrote:I'm....actually kinda happy I'm annoyed at Optimus. That's some really good writing there.

Didn't think I'd side with Pyra, but.....yep.


Pyra Was Always Right.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #22 (1977345)
Posted by Ms. Trebuchette on August 8th, 2018 @ 2:22pm CDT
Va'al wrote:
AlphaBass wrote:I'm....actually kinda happy I'm annoyed at Optimus. That's some really good writing there.

Didn't think I'd side with Pyra, but.....yep.


Pyra Was Always Right.


Preach.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #22 (1977361)
Posted by ZeroWolf on August 8th, 2018 @ 3:03pm CDT
Though I would ask what prime was supposed to have done instead...seems to me like no option would have spared then this fate.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #22 (1977383)
Posted by D-Maximal_Primal on August 8th, 2018 @ 4:39pm CDT
At this point, I just don't like Slide. Let's get that part over with.

At least they are finally bringing back Prowl.

Also wondering how Jazz will fit into the finale.

And finally, ROM and Prime together like that, with ROM sitting on his shoulder, is great. My favorite part.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #22 (1977497)
Posted by AlphaBass on August 9th, 2018 @ 8:10am CDT
ZeroWolf wrote:Though I would ask what prime was supposed to have done instead...seems to me like no option would have spared then this fate.

True, but there's a difference between telling folks "Yeah, this is hopeless, but I'm gonna try my plan and if it doesn't work, we'll bridge folks back to Cybertron as a backup" and "Yeah, this is hopeless, y'all are toast anyway, so my plan involves your toasted-ness so I could have a clear shot at what Unicron is".

It's no wonder Pyra was plotting to overthrow him.

It also make's Pyra's almost-sacrificial comment of "Tell Optimus this is all his fault" ring that much more true.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #22 (1977500)
Posted by ZeroWolf on August 9th, 2018 @ 8:20am CDT
But they rescued everyone on caminus regardless, they need an opportunity to get into unicron to see what made him tic and only way they could do that is while he was munching on a planet.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #22 (1977516)
Posted by AlphaBass on August 9th, 2018 @ 9:59am CDT
ZeroWolf wrote:But they rescued everyone on caminus regardless, they need an opportunity to get into unicron to see what made him tic and only way they could do that is while he was munching on a planet.

The problem isn't with the result - Caminus was gone, either way.

The problem is with the approach. Windblade herself railed about how this isn't Caminus' fault. So you go from a relatively peaceful colony to being drug into Cybertronians' issues, to being told by a guy who uses your beliefs against you, ever so slightly, that "Oh btw, I'm gonna sacrifice your planet in the name of the greater good". It's good that they saved everyone, but it's the greater issues at play.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #22 (1977517)
Posted by ZeroWolf on August 9th, 2018 @ 10:04am CDT
I can see that but I think the blame is still coming too hard considering that ultimately, this is definitely a "sins of the fathers"-type affair .
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #22 (1977560)
Posted by Va'al on August 9th, 2018 @ 1:27pm CDT
ZeroWolf wrote:I can see that but I think the blame is still coming too hard considering that ultimately, this is definitely a "sins of the fathers"-type affair .


OP does not have the best track record for 'let's wait and see where he goes with this' admittedly.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #22 (1977584)
Posted by ScottyP on August 9th, 2018 @ 2:54pm CDT
ZeroWolf wrote:
Va'al wrote:
ZeroWolf wrote:Good review, and I love that artwork there of Shockwave talking about Eurakris and Antila. I just can't fathom how the scheduling got this messed up.


Thanks!

Admittedly, this was more as a big picture weird scheduling. It's not something to do with things being too late or missed releases, it just happens to work weird leading into the Unicron stuff (which was bound to come out for FCBD from the start, from what I know).

I see, I have to wonder when they were sat planning this out, if this was the best worst approach. Given what they wanted to cover in Unicron 0#, they must have resigned themselves to certain events loosing impact.
The initial schedule was something like this or close to it iirc (not using exact dates bc they're long gone):
[list=1]
  • Unicron 0[/*:m]
  • OP 21[/*:m]
  • Unicron 1 (I think initial scheduling had it same day as OP 21)[/*:m]
  • OP 22[/*:m]
  • Unicron 2[/*:m]
  • Unicron 3[/*:m]
  • OP 23[/*:m]
  • Unicron 4[/*:m][/list:o]

    This is not what's happened or will happen based on current info. Next comic out (for now) is Unicron 4 on 8/22. 9/5 has OP 23 and LL 23, with Unicron 5 on 9/12. If that sticks, I can imagine OP 23 and maybe 24 also feeling like they're playing catch-up in spots.
  • Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #22 (1977589)
    Posted by ZeroWolf on August 9th, 2018 @ 3:07pm CDT
    Thanks scotty! If I recall from the solits, The last OP is also the last in the continuity right?
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