Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #24

Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #24

Wednesday, October 17th, 2018 5:04am CDT

Categories: Comic Book News, Reviews, Site Articles
Posted by: Va'al   Views: 24,253

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Let It Slide
(Spoiler free-ish)



Synopsis
YOUTH IN REVOLT! As Unicron approaches, Optimus Prime’s colonist soldiers take matters into their own hands. With Autobot forces spread thin, will anybody stand in their way? And–more importantly–SHOULD anybody stop them?

Transformers News: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #24
that solicit feels more like last issue


Story
We continue, after a fashion, the almost parallel story being told between the Unicron mini-series and the Optimus Prime ongoing, after the latest events in the two series and the splitting up of the stories, as they reconnect in Unicron #5 - the review for which will follow this one, as the story does so in the books. But for OP? Read on below!

Transformers News: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #24
brutal recap


The story, or rather stories, that are taking place in this one issue have seemingly little to do with the opening - very funny - scene with Thundercracker retelling events from the GI Joe books. I say seemingly, as the leitmotif of the TF universe has effectively been 'stories are just stories being told in different ways from different storytellers' - and that leads us into, finally, a conclusion to Slide's grief, anger and legitimate (but dragged out) resentment towards Optimus himself.

Transformers News: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #24
FINALLY


This latter frame, while needed, can create some confusion on the overall book, as the subsequence of multiple perspective flashbacks and present time retelling of the flashbacks, with a shift into the actual present time actions that follow that retelling... Nonetheless, several of the cast members here, and it's an impressively enormous cast by now, get their character moment, even if just one line, one panel, one frame.

Transformers News: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #24
This one's Snarl's


That said, there isn't ..that much happening in the issue overall, though some serious conversations and interactions take place. Which is, again, an odd choice, being so close to the end - with Unicron #5 and #6 continuing this story before we fall into the conclusive issue #25 - and that may not sit well with everyone still along for the final rush to the finish line, despite what good comes from the single moments - such as the final two pages.


Art

On art duties, we find both Andrew Griffith and Sara Pitre Durocher, working more or less in tandem on the different timeframes of the overall story: Griffith has a specific task with Thundercracker, of course, and SPD works particularly well with Jazz and Prowl scenes - but both deliver some excellent panelwork, and the multiple splash pages and spreads are a testimony to their skill, and the synchronicity of their collaboration.

Transformers News: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #24
DOC MISSES BUSTER


Something that Josh Burcham's colouring work only seems to highlight, as on the first read - bar some obvious exceptions, such as the opening scenes - I wasn't entirely sure on which pages were done by which artist, and that is something the colours have been able to do for the entire series, just even more so here. And I am so very impressed.

Transformers News: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #24
Your New Robot Monster Girlfriend


Tom B Long doesn't have an easy job of keeping track of the multiple time and story frames, but the story progresses nicely with his help too - and the captions, the colour coding of the stories being told in them, and their placement, ensure that readers are really on board with who's speaking at what moment, and why that matters. Because it does.

As for covers, you can find all three (admittedly two, given the Kei Zama retailer incentive in black and white lineart) in full size in our Vector Sigma Database entry, and the one found in the thumbnail is the Griffith / Joana Lafuente B Cover, with yet again the leitmotif in plain sight.

Thoughts
Spoilerish ahead
If you're looking for a big fight against Unicron, or even under Unicron at this stage, last issue is where you want to look for, as the breather - an odd choice of pacing for an ending series, admittedly - is what we find here. And it may not be John Barber's most political issue overall, but it has some of his most poignant reflections on the themes he's explored so far, from leadership, to community, to tyranny and fascism, via personal loss and anger.

Transformers News: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #24
Till All Are ...oh


So even with the odd 'breather' pacing issues, I enjoyed the book - but more so on a second read, and I'm glad it's coming out close enough to Unicron #5 as we'd otherwise have too much space of not much happening in the same storyline across two books. Visually, the last Griffith page is magnificent, SPD's Prowl is brutal, and Stardrive is still as great and sharp as she is (/will be) in Unicron #5, with the full force of Prowl's influence on her after a long stint alone.

. :CYBERTRON: :CYBERTRON: :CYBERTRON: ½ out of :CYBERTRON: :CYBERTRON: :CYBERTRON: :CYBERTRON: :CYBERTRON:

Credit(s): IDW


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Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #24 (1989601)
Posted by D-Maximal_Primal on October 17th, 2018 @ 6:27pm CDT
If I'm being honest, I just want Slide to go away. I've really not enjoyed her character at all, and I find myself grimacing when she's on panel.

I find myself the same way with Stardrive. After how she started, she's a bit too Prowl for me. I like Prowl as he is, but Stardrive as his protege doesn't really work for me.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #24 (1989643)
Posted by Black Bumblebee on October 17th, 2018 @ 11:54pm CDT
Can someone tell me why Prowl still has an injured eye? I mean... come on. Dude's like Rung can get their entire head replaced, and characters tend to get new bodies like folks get new sets of clothes. Why can't someone take a few moments and get him a new eye?

Yeah, I know... issue is about loss and fascism and all that stuff. Depression-rama. Our heroes suck, even when they're trying their best. I hope Oiler just gets squished soon.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #24 (1990692)
Posted by Daniel Adkins on October 24th, 2018 @ 12:43am CDT
Black Bumblebee wrote:Can someone tell me why Prowl still has an injured eye? I mean... come on. Dude's like Rung can get their entire head replaced, and characters tend to get new bodies like folks get new sets of clothes. Why can't someone take a few moments and get him a new eye?

Yeah, I know... issue is about loss and fascism and all that stuff. Depression-rama. Our heroes suck, even when they're trying their best. I hope Oiler just gets squished soon.

Oiler died a while ago. Slide is the one still around.

Also, the reason Prowl still doesn’t have his eye is because he’s supposed to mirror Shockwave at this point. That’s why he has the Vamparc Ribbon and is going off to face Shockwave in Unicron #5.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #24 (1991049)
Posted by ScottyP on October 25th, 2018 @ 6:48pm CDT
Black Bumblebee wrote:Can someone tell me why Prowl still has an injured eye? I mean... come on. Dude's like Rung can get their entire head replaced, and characters tend to get new bodies like folks get new sets of clothes. Why can't someone take a few moments and get him a new eye?
Prowl's just trying to be cool and edgy ;)

And about Rung, well, based on your post you're not caught up on Lost Light are you? There are reasons and I'll leave it at that!
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #24 (1994388)
Posted by Ironhidensh on November 17th, 2018 @ 7:42am CST
So..... this Wednesdays issue is it for the current IDWverse, isn't it?
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #24 (1994538)
Posted by william-james88 on November 18th, 2018 @ 7:47pm CST
The end of the current Transformers continuity over at IDW is upon us with its final chapter, Optimus Prime 25, coming out this week. The 5 page preview has been found on adventuresinpoortaste.com.

Of course, since this takes place after the finale of the Unicron mini series you may want to read that before looking below since this may spoil that book.

Optimus Prime #25

END OF THE ROAD! The battle is over. Heroes have fallen. Worlds have died. Now Optimus Prime faces his final ordeal–as past, present, and future collide. Who will stand with him? And when it’s all over, who will carry the mantle of “Prime?”

Bullet points:

– Extra-long final issue! Tying together and putting a bow on stories from the past 13 years!
– Ties in to the Unicron event!
– Part of the summer of Transformers–all building up to the end of the universe as we know it!
– Variant cover by Andrew Griffith!

Written by: John Barber
Art by: Kei Zama
Colors by: Casey W. Coller
Letters by: Tom B. Long
Cover A by: Kei Zama
Cover B by: Casey W. Coller
FC • 40 pages • $4.99
Release Date: November 21, 2018

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Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #24 (1994542)
Posted by BATTLEMASTER IIC on November 18th, 2018 @ 8:20pm CST
A ceremony that Thundercracker is involved in? I wonder if it's for a film he's been working on... Or if he's going to be naturalized as the first Cybertronian citizen of the United States :RUBSIGN:
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #24 (1994551)
Posted by D-Maximal_Primal on November 18th, 2018 @ 9:08pm CST
Ironhidensh wrote:So..... this Wednesdays issue is it for the current IDWverse, isn't it?

Yep it is.

and I have some thoughts on the end here once his issue comes out, cause there is some stuff I really need to get off my chest about the end
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #24 (1994565)
Posted by Sunstar on November 18th, 2018 @ 10:01pm CST
I am gonna miss TFcomics after this :/
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #24 (1994571)
Posted by Flashwave on November 18th, 2018 @ 11:18pm CST
D-Maximal_Primal wrote:
Ironhidensh wrote:So..... this Wednesdays issue is it for the current IDWverse, isn't it?

Yep it is.

and I have some thoughts on the end here once his issue comes out, cause there is some stuff I really need to get off my chest about the end


Tuesday Morning: “IDW release date pushed back a week.”
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #24 (1994574)
Posted by Stormshot_Prime on November 18th, 2018 @ 11:30pm CST
It’s crazy to think, years ago I was just a youngin discovering old Infiltration issues. Me and so many others are devoted to every corner of this universe, it’s character’s, the thought-out lore. Every month we’ve gotten at least one or two issues, so many toys and cartoons have been influenced by this continuity. I feel like most of the fiction we’ll be seeing for a while after this Wednesday will be nothing.

taao
:BOT:
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #24 (1994578)
Posted by Agent 53 on November 19th, 2018 @ 12:20am CST
BATTLEMASTER IIC wrote:A ceremony that Thundercracker is involved in? I wonder if it's for a film he's been working on... Or if he's going to be naturalized as the first Cybertronian citizen of the United States :RUBSIGN:

I'm assuming it's either a mass funeral for all who died in the battle with Unicron, or specifically to Optimus.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #24 (1994584)
Posted by ZeroWolf on November 19th, 2018 @ 2:11am CST
D-Maximal_Primal wrote:
Ironhidensh wrote:So..... this Wednesdays issue is it for the current IDWverse, isn't it?

Yep it is.

and I have some thoughts on the end here once his issue comes out, cause there is some stuff I really need to get off my chest about the end


I look forward to reading your thoughts D Max, I've enjoyed your reviews and I wish Va'al had stuck around a bit longer for me to tell him the same, I mean I could tweet him but it feels like an odd thing to message out of the blue :lol:

My thoughts on the end of this are complicated and I'll have to wait and see what this issue says before I can hope to verbalise them.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #24 (1994590)
Posted by Sabrewing on November 19th, 2018 @ 4:15am CST
Cute idea, to start with the first fiction ever published on Optimus Prime.

There is so much story potential we'll never get to see.

But then, we may speculate.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #24 (1994917)
Posted by ScottyP on November 21st, 2018 @ 6:36am CST
The Final Cut!
A Review of Optimus Prime #25

Free of any explicit spoilers, but some may be unintentionally implied.
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'til all are gone?

It all (re)started with "The Death of Optimus Prime". Surprising no one, he wasn't really dead, and not even in a way requiring a true resurrection. The namesake character of this comic series has been defined throughout as both an idea and a character. With the opening pages leading off with the first lines of Bob Budiansky's original Tech Spec for Optimus Prime, you'll immediately recognize that we're starting at the start before we arrive to the end.

Here we are now at the end, with Optimus Prime, 27 (or 24) pages, and one of the longest uninterrupted Transformers stories ever created wrapping up. How did it go? Read on.

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It's too late to emergency separate into the other book!

This is indeed the end with this issue serving as a final exhale, putting a cap on a good deal of unfinished business. More akin to Lost Light #25 than Unicron #6, Optimus Prime #25 provides final flashbacks and final thoughts with all the big, sweeping, intergalactic action wrapped and over. It was important for more than just Optimus Prime himself to get a last tale and that hope is fulfilled. Arcee, Jazz, Aileron, Rum-Maj, and more I won't mention (just in case you haven't caught up to the end of Unicron) at least get a little something this time out and even if a bit short in some cases, these mini-endings all feel appropriate and help take the characters further if not entirely full circle.

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Got to the last issue after all, sort of.

There are flashback scenes dispersed throughout, and the first few of them pay respect to characters wiped out in other Transformers comic series in a fun way that unfortunately did not continue to the end of the book, but this was necessary to carry the issue's story along. It's another way that writer John Barber ensures more characters are around if you need one last goodbye, adding to the emotional weight that ebbs and flows during the course of this installment.

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Entire mini-series of Buzzsaw: Planeteer? Sold.

Somewhat similar to horrible tearjerker/fantastic comic book "The Life of Sideswipe", a sense of melancholy carries from page to page, and while it isn't all depressing or mournful something in the tone of the writing shoots pangs of regret. I can't say that there's regret here for certain, but if there is, good luck figuring out if it's about the series ending, where it ended up, or maybe even how the grand experiment of the shared Hasbro Universe followed course. Either way it's another layer to the depth of the book, which some will find more hopeful than wistful even though that doesn't match the mood I received.

A quick, special note is in order to one scene in particular featuring Aileron, Jetfire, Sunstreaker, Bob, and more of a spacefaring team aboard an Autobot shuttle as it travels the unknown and makes a discovery. Well, at least I think it did, and it was a superbly fun touch.

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Go back to the Shadow

Kei Zama and Josh Burcham finish up this series by handling all the lineart and color work for Optimus Prime #25 and deliver all the striking lines, thick borders, and retro-cool lighting that defines the look of this series. A particularly amazing panel of Ravage (from a flashback scene, sorry!) is shown above that provides a sharp contrast and rich shadows that help tell the story within the story. Tom B. Long's letters further enhance the work, providing emphasis in just the right places to help some scenes comfort while others turn sinister. David Mariotte ensures a coherent package is delivered even with the flashback-to-present-and-back-again hopping and regular shifts in character focus.

This review's newspost thumbnail shows Casey Coller's B Cover for the issue, which I felt was most indicative of the kind of story within. Zama and Burcham (after Simonson) deliver a beautiful cast piece on Cover A, with just about everyone from the Optimus Prime series accounted for. Robots in Disguise helmsman Andrew Griffith takes us back to 2012 on a retailer incentive cover that I hope does not immediately sell out everywhere and quadruple in value like Alex Milne's Lost Light #25 RI cover did. You can find images of all of those covers and full credits for the issue in our Vector Sigma Database page for Optimus Prime #25, but please note it contains a character appearance list which may accidentally deliver spoilers.

Verdict
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Left to read Go-Bots

This was a book with a heavy burden, but as a final epilogue after the climactic battles it still makes it to Cybertron without jettisoning Insecticons worth of weight in the process. A healthy dose of character endings, playful dialogue that snatches the Furmanism away from the jaws of finality, and a ready-built setup for the future help too, even if it won't be realized.

Optimus Prime's epilogue is a very good epilogue because it's exactly that and doesn't try to be something beyond its purpose. Even the well worn trope of the final villain being back for one last go doesn't show up, a pleasant surprise given how easy a setting like Infraspace could have been for such a moment. Enjoy this while you can since we've got a few quiet months ahead of us in the world of Transformers comics, but that's well earned after 13 years of amazing stories.

Once more, to all the creative forces at IDW Publishing that have made this happen since 2005, thank you!

. :BOT: :BOT: :BOT: :BOT: and ½
out of
:BOT: :BOT: :BOT: :BOT: :BOT:

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Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #24 (1994926)
Posted by Big Grim on November 21st, 2018 @ 8:00am CST
Lookin' forward to reading this after work.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #24 (1994929)
Posted by ZeroWolf on November 21st, 2018 @ 8:30am CST
A very touching review dmax :) thank you for doing these.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #24 (1994938)
Posted by o.supreme on November 21st, 2018 @ 9:35am CST
ScottyP wrote:Enjoy this while you can since we've got a few quiet months ahead of us in the world of Transformers comics, but that's well earned after 13 years of amazing stories.


Great Review, I'll take nothing away from it. But to be honest, I think we have more than a few quiet months ahead of us. And I'm going to enjoy the quiet for as long as I can, never thought I'd say that but...

I'm all about longevity. For this run to have lasted 13 years is amazing (see my comments in the Unicron thread), but it took so many twists, turns and re brands, it really did feel like something entirely different every few years. It (for me) went from boring, to really good, then ok, then in the last few years, ironically what fans liked the most, I found myself saying..."This isn't Transformers", but its all over now, and I'm OK with that. I never thought I'd be one of the fans that prefers nothing over something awful, but here we are.

I know as you said, you *enjoyed* the avoidance of the tropes, but to me, a lack of resolution between the crew of LL and the rest of the Transformers feels hollow. I'm not saying they had to contrive a pointless last battle between Optimus and Megatron, but a meeting, considering all they've each gone through would have been interesting.

It just felt like IDW wanted to end things, and all the respective writers were of course saving the Unicron card for the inevitable end, but they didn't get to play it quite the way they wanted to. Still I'm glad at least we got an ending, unlike so many other Transformers continuities. This one, while not being the *best*, at least nobody will be pining for what might have been, or wanting for more, because there is no need for more.

Rest well IDW. You may not have given me what I wanted, but you did so for other fans. Of the classic 3 pronged style of delivery of Transformers (Toys, Comics, and Animation), at least we can say, nobody will be wondering why there has been no Transformers comic in a while.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #24 (1994961)
Posted by Sunstar on November 21st, 2018 @ 11:51am CST
I bet he is off to haunt Megatron, if I know him. <3
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #24 (1994965)
Posted by Black Bumblebee on November 21st, 2018 @ 12:20pm CST
I can just see the memes dealing with Starscream discussing footprints in the sand with Bumblebee. We know they're coming.

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