Review of IDW Transformers Unicron #0 - #FCBD

Review of IDW Transformers Unicron #0 - #FCBD

Saturday, May 5th, 2018 2:27am CDT

Categories: Comic Book News, Reviews, Site Articles
Posted by: Va'al   Views: 24,931

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The Beginning of the Beginning of the End
(Spoiler free-ish)



Synopsis
Not a whimper, nor a bang-the end comes with a squall of entropy shrieking from the ravenous maw of death itself. The message is clear: Unicron has arrived. The Transformers lock into a desperate bid to save Rom's homeworld from the world-killer - but why has Unicron chosen this world on his path to Cybertron... and Earth? The biggest story in the history of Transformers starts now: for Unicron's arrival can mean nothing less than the end of a universe.

Transformers News: Review of IDW Transformers Unicron #0 - #FCBD
a narrative universe, that is


Story
First things first: this issue is part of the Free Comic Book Day initiative, in which participating physical comics stores give out free copies of comic books from a number of publishers. If you don't know where to find a store near you, try this tool (works relatively accurately outside of US and Canada too)!

Second: even just the opening, and the preview, of this book will spoil at least one and a half storylines from the current Optimus Prime ongoing series. The cover does too. So that's that, and we all know now. I will not dwell on it further, but if you'd rather wait for the next two issues of OP to hit before finding this issue, do so!

Transformers News: Review of IDW Transformers Unicron #0 - #FCBD
yeah, pretty much


Now, into the main course: John Barber brings Unicron to the Transformers universe, fully, entirely, wholly and viciously . And I really mean that last one. There is no sympathy from me towards those asking for the entire IDW universe casts to be annihilated as the continuity ends, but it looks like Barber is definitely starting to trim those down from the get go (a recurring theme since David Mariotte's arrival on editorial, now that I think about it...) - and not even in the main part of the story.

Transformers News: Review of IDW Transformers Unicron #0 - #FCBD
Snerk


Optimus Prime is the more or less de facto narrator (his caption tag says so), and the technique is one that will be familiar to all of Barber's readers - but even so, this ..thing, this threat is new to him too. He does not have prior knowledge. None of the characters beside him do, nor does the Solstar Order, nor does the reader. And that narration helps us - established fans of Transformers, and in the know about the mythos in general - see this new Unicron, this IDW version of him, in a different light.

Transformers News: Review of IDW Transformers Unicron #0 - #FCBD
I give you: OP raising an eyebrow


There are of course some lighter moments, where possible, mostly in the form of wit quickly truncated by the events taking place around the characters (Rom's deadpan behaviour, Wheeljack being himself, Pyra Magna's shade towards Optimus), but for such a short story, there are so many heavy beats that you will most definitely be wanting some more.


Art

Alex Milne, who has had a taste of Elonian blood already in the Shining Armor mini-series that saw the first collaboration between Cybertronians and Rom's Solstar Order (including specific characters in this issue, who reference that fact), returns to similar worlds to bring some painstaking detail to the frames he lays out with almost dark glee. And, most admirably I thought, he gives us a sense of the sheer scale that Unicron holds compared to everything else on the page, without ever fully showing the planet - this is not Unicron's story, after all, but that of the people facing him.

Transformers News: Review of IDW Transformers Unicron #0 - #FCBD
hi Bob


Colours are provided by a previous collaborator of Barber's and a new for Milne, Sebastian Cheng, last seen in Revolution and Revolutionaries. While showing the same vibrancy of some of those series, in fact, he manages to convey some truly dark moments for everyone involved with some impressive lighting angles and surfaces.

Transformers News: Review of IDW Transformers Unicron #0 - #FCBD
..it's really hard not to spoil..


What else can I add about Tom B. Long's lettering, really, at this stage - other than reiterate his necessary role in something as vast and encompassing as the entire Hasbro Universe and its unmaker, with captions placed right, dialogue paced out, and a new title redesign that ..just works.

There is just the one cover, being a FCBD comic, but the composition - one that we have seen many a time, is a pretty good reminder of the immense powers at work on the universe right here, and Sara Pitre Durocher delivers.

Thoughts
Spoilerish ahead

As I said above, the pacing that Barber has created - by dropping us into the story exactly as it's happening (unavoidable, given the scheduling of the book compared to the ones leading into it) and building to it through Revolutionaries and Optimus Prime, Shining Armor, and the early days of exRID - allows for some pretty breakneck reading and experiencing of the heavier moments taking place in the pretty short issue. And it's done in such a way that will allow several readers to really want to get into the main story come July, while not relying on senseless shock value twists or carnage for its own sake (yes, we all know what I'm referring to here).

Transformers News: Review of IDW Transformers Unicron #0 - #FCBD
More snerk


Milne and Cheng work really well together too, which is a low-key relief. Having seen both of their work apart from each other, I wasn't entirely sure it would end up looking this good, and am excited to see more (even just on covers, like for Unicron #1). The extra treat in the book, though? John Barber's letter at the very end, tidying up a lot of the threads that have lead to this moment, and initially written in January - there's Revolutionaries, Dark Cybertron, exRID, First Strike, and more, laid out for readers who wanted to follow up without keeping everything at hand. It's good. It's Barber. It's good Barber.

. :BLEND: :BLEND: :BLEND: :BLEND: out of :BLEND: :BLEND: :BLEND: :BLEND: :BLEND:

Credit(s): IDW, FCBD


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Re: Review of IDW Transformers Unicron #0 - #FCBD (1957764)
Posted by Rodimus Prime on May 5th, 2018 @ 3:06am CDT
I'm looking forward to this more than I thought I would. Such high expectations.

Good review Va'al! ;)^
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Unicron #0 - #FCBD (1957766)
Posted by ZeroWolf on May 5th, 2018 @ 3:09am CDT
This story arc has got a lot to live up to but I have trust in barber. I still think unicron will be gone at the end (maybe they'll use magic and then shift unicron into the new continuity, so it becomes their problem :-P)
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Unicron #0 - #FCBD (1957790)
Posted by ScottyP on May 5th, 2018 @ 9:24am CDT
This is a great book given the truncated size, it isn't filled with ads as the back matter (features the pages from First Strike 6 where Unicron is introduced plus some reference material on the continuity), and the art is holy ---- levels of good. Get this today! (But buy something too - your local shop pays for the free copies so grab some Lost Light or Optimus Prime issues or branch out and grab something new!)
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Unicron #0 - #FCBD (1957792)
Posted by ZeroWolf on May 5th, 2018 @ 10:07am CDT
I picked up mine from one of the local libraries near me. Though they are stamped by a comic shop with an outlet an hour away from me. I don't know how free comic book day works in that case..
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Unicron #0 - #FCBD (1957795)
Posted by Sunstar on May 5th, 2018 @ 10:55am CDT
I got it, I read it and WOW.

the back of the book covers the "missing sections." I would advise not reading that if you don't want optimus prime 19 (and possibly 20) spoiled. Quite the terrifying concept.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Unicron #0 - #FCBD (1957798)
Posted by AllNewSuperRobot on May 5th, 2018 @ 11:18am CDT
I took the plunge. It is Unicron after all. I've pre-ordered issues 1 & 2 so far. This #0 one doesn't seem to exist physically online though? Is it required reading for issue 1 or will it be part of that issue, for those that miss out??
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Unicron #0 - #FCBD (1957807)
Posted by ZeroWolf on May 5th, 2018 @ 12:30pm CDT
I thought places like comixology would have the free issues.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Unicron #0 - #FCBD (1957810)
Posted by Va'al on May 5th, 2018 @ 1:28pm CDT
As I and others have said further up in the thread, and in the review, this is only out today physically.
It should be out digitally before issue #1 hits, but we have no confirmed release yet.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Unicron #0 - #FCBD (1957812)
Posted by Sunstar on May 5th, 2018 @ 1:53pm CDT
AllNewSuperRobot wrote:I took the plunge. It is Unicron after all. I've pre-ordered issues 1 & 2 so far. This #0 one doesn't seem to exist physically online though? Is it required reading for issue 1 or will it be part of that issue, for those that miss out??


you may find 0 after today - but it probably is a good idea to obtain. I am sort of iffy on something like this being part of FCBD - because not everyone can get the day off. I was lucky.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Unicron #0 - #FCBD (1957817)
Posted by Randomhero on May 5th, 2018 @ 2:50pm CDT
I had a theory Unicron was going to be targeting the Ores. Guess I was right.

He’s taking all the ores and doing what Shockwave attempted with Regensis in Dark Cybettron. Much like shockwaves goal was to turn into a singularity that forever feeds off the universe Unicron is doing the same.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Unicron #0 - #FCBD (1957822)
Posted by D-Maximal_Primal on May 5th, 2018 @ 3:30pm CDT
Picked it up, first time actually being part of free comic book day. Great read, sad story that gives me hope for Unicron.

You killed Wheeljack.... that was so sad.

And what is it now, unicron has eaten 4 colonies and he's starting on Eukaris #5 at the And? Wow. And man he's killed a lot already
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Unicron #0 - #FCBD (1957828)
Posted by rslatt74 on May 5th, 2018 @ 3:47pm CDT
Is it just me or does it look like Rom and his buddy are about to be transformed into Scourge and Cyclonus?

Image
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Unicron #0 - #FCBD (1957840)
Posted by Randomhero on May 5th, 2018 @ 6:53pm CDT
rslatt74 wrote:Is it just me or does it look like Rom and his buddy are about to be transformed into Scourge and Cyclonus?

Image


...just you
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Unicron #0 - #FCBD (1957843)
Posted by Black Bumblebee on May 5th, 2018 @ 8:45pm CDT
Maybe I missed it in one of the spin offs (I only really read Lost Light & Optimus Prime), but has it been explained how they got Bumblebee back from the dead (or wherever he was)?
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Unicron #0 - #FCBD (1957848)
Posted by Daniel Adkins on May 5th, 2018 @ 10:14pm CDT
Black Bumblebee wrote:Maybe I missed it in one of the spin offs (I only really read Lost Light & Optimus Prime), but has it been explained how they got Bumblebee back from the dead (or wherever he was)?

This story takes place after The Falling, and Bumblebee will be coming back during the upcoming issues of that storyline. He should be back by issue #20.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Unicron #0 - #FCBD (1957849)
Posted by Sunstar on May 5th, 2018 @ 10:32pm CDT
it actually explains his return in the back of the book. I don't advise reading it because of spoilers
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Unicron #0 - #FCBD (1957869)
Posted by AllNewSuperRobot on May 6th, 2018 @ 3:37am CDT
I'd imagine "healing coma". The BS that was popularised with Superman :roll: aka He was Dead... But not really.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Unicron #0 - #FCBD (1957870)
Posted by ZeroWolf on May 6th, 2018 @ 3:47am CDT
No bee was definitely dead...actually I question his return less than I do the other big return in recent issues of Optimus Prime...after that it's quite easy to resurrect the yellow bot. Question is, has he been brought back just to die again?
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Unicron #0 - #FCBD (1957872)
Posted by AllNewSuperRobot on May 6th, 2018 @ 3:50am CDT
I felt it was kind of vague. I read Dark Cybertron (in the TF Part-Work) and they just kind of left him.

The general rule of thumb in media: if you don't see the body, they ain't dead.
Re: Review of IDW Transformers Unicron #0 - #FCBD (1957881)
Posted by YoungPrime on May 6th, 2018 @ 9:04am CDT
Umm, yeah. This felt like a free comic.

Unless they give Unicron more personality and less irritating (Pyra) and forced (Bumblebee) dialog from the rest this is going to be a bland ending.

2 out of 5 for me.

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