Thoughts About Transformers Ongoing Issue #26 - Issue Recap, Review, and Some Questions

Thoughts About Transformers Ongoing Issue #26 - Issue Recap, Review, and Some Questions

Tuesday, September 27th, 2011 5:34pm CDT

Categories: Comic Book News, Reviews
Posted by: Tigertrack   Views: 65,893

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Reviewing TRANSFORMERS ONGOING #26 - Chaos Part 2: Numbers

Story By: Mike Costa and James Roberts
Script by: Mike Costa
Art by: Livio Ramondelli
Letters by: Neil Uyetake
Editor: Carlos Guzman


Michael Bay’s jealousy meter may have been tickled a bit with the release of this issue of Transformers Ongoing. Honestly, I’m not sure Michael Bay cares for any Transformers beyond the universe that he created, but if he did, CHAOS Part 2: NUMBERS would probably be amongst his all time favorites.

Continuing with the outer space adventurama, last issue in space (Issue 24) saw the Autobots staring down the gun barrel of Kimia; the weapons research facility transformed into one of the galaxy’s largest weapons of mass destruction, ready to lay waste to Optimus Prime’s little Autobot opposition force on Cybertron. Looked hopeless, right? Eh, not so much.

In issue #26, the Autobots find out they are not the target of the captured Kimia station, but the planet Cybertron itself is, at some precise coordinates whose significance we are not yet aware of. Optimus, noting new life for his team, immediately sends an aerial assault team to try to at least redirect Kimia, to possibly cripple it, but if need be to destroy it.

Silverbolt, Rodimus, and Omega Supreme lead a cast of 100’s (it seems) of aerial Autobots out of Cybertron’s atmosphere and into direct conflict with the station. They are met by hordes and hordes of mindless Sweeps.

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Fly you fools!

Back on Cybertron, Cliffjumper and Wheelie scout out the Cons. Through a lack of discipline and situational understanding, Wheelie pushes the Autobots back into conflict with Galvatron and his massive amounts of planetside Sweeps.

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Wheelie say, you need dentures today.

Meanwhile, after being stopped short of shooting a large hole through Cybertron, Kimia is removed from functional use thanks to the sacrifice of two very altruistic Autobots. Galvatron seems to think he has gotten what he needed from the shortened blast anyway, and quickly pulls out, removing himself and Jhiaxus to investigate the epicenter of the blast’s impact. Optimus, of course, must follow.

And for the issue’s coup de grace, Megatron escapes Omega Supreme (surprise) and seems to have added some sort of armor and weaponry on top of his existing hull and claims Cybertron for himself made from all of his little copies of himself. The Autobots immediately mess their collective aft hulls. End.

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"Behold, the super, superest, Super Megatron!"

I know the issue has been out for about a week, but I did not want to give away all the details involved in it. It’s a fun, action-packed, moving at the speed of light story!

There isn’t a whole lot of controversy to this issue, it’s advancing the story nicely, building tension and creating what seems to be an almost hopeless situation for the Autobots (does anyone else hear “The Touch” in the background?).

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"This is my boom stick."

If I go for the easy shot at criticism, it’s at the art. It’s not bad, in fact, I like it, I am a fan of people taking license with character designs to fit his/her art style. Using current designs in a new style can be cool, and Livio does that creating an instantly recognizable painted, scratchy, almost dreamlike style for the space showdown, highly contrasting Brendan Cahill’s tighter, more classic-styled work for the other Ongoing story arc, The Last Story On Earth.

At times it can be hard to tell who characters are, or what they might be doing. And sometimes the art style does not seem to work with the newer Don Figueroa created designs. But I think for as many people that complain about these points, there are just as many supporters of it for it’s different feel, almost like Alex Ross is finding his way into the Transformers universe (Or Bill Sienkiewicz, again). However, it does seem to tilt between trying to look lifelike and real to being more of an impressionistic look at the bots. Purposeful, or not, I’m not sure. You'll find toy inspired al modes, and almost too simple and too flat faces at times.

Regardless, I believe the huge difference in art from what we are used to actually makes this part of the series seem more epic. I almost believe if it were a more classic-style artist, the impact that this story is meant to have would not be quite as noticeable. But Don’s classic style worked well enough for Stormbringers, so maybe this drastic of a difference was not needed, but is a nice change at times.

There are other things to pick at as well if you look. Like where the dead army went that Galvatron raised in the Heart of Darkness series? Everyone not named Galvatron, Cyclonus, and Scourge seems to be a sweep now, but clearly at the end of HOD there were all types on Cybertron with Galvatron. And with the change/disappearance of his troops, so the Autobot army seems to have grown larger and changed from what was originally intimated when this whole space action started back in 20, and 21.

Honestly, these small wonderings do not make me want to stop reading as some of the choices the creators made in the past had made me want to do. I want to see this through, I want to see what this DVoid thing is (Unicron is the easy guess, but doesn’t seem quite right) and how Galvatron’s wound to Cybertron will help him to stop it when his back from the dead army had a very hard time defeating DVoid’s harbinger back in HOD #4.

So what do you think? Does the CHAOS arc compare with previous galactic Transformers stories like ‘End of the Road’, ‘War Within’, or ‘Stormbringer’ or the G2 Marvel series? Do you think Mike Costa has finally gotten into his ‘writing zone’, with James Roberts helping to bring him there using his good karma that grew to fruition with ‘Last Stand of the Wreckers’?

If you haven’t read this issue, I suggest picking it up and seeing this through until the end...

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Credit(s): tigertracks 24


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Re: Thoughts About Transformers Ongoing Issue #26 - Issue Recap, Review, and Some Questions (1294161)
Posted by RK_Striker_JK_5 on September 27th, 2011 @ 5:41pm CDT
Not a fan of the art, either. Ugh...
Re: Thoughts About Transformers Ongoing Issue #26 - Issue Recap, Review, and Some Questions (1294210)
Posted by NemesisMonkeySupreme on September 27th, 2011 @ 9:14pm CDT
Livio really needs to stick to just covers. I think the lack of visual storytelling that his art just doesn't provide is making what could be a really good story just something we're all waiting to conclude so we can get to Roberts & Roche.

The comparison to Bill Sienkiewicz is spot on in my opinion. I loved Bill Sienkiewicz' covers on my books (Daredevil, Batman, etc.) back in the day, but I was never a fan of his panel work (Elektra: Assassin, Arkham Asylum, Stray Toasters, etc.) even when the stories were his as well (such as in Stray Toasters).

CHAOS Part 2: NUMBERS would probably be amongst [Michael Bay's] all time favorites.
All things aside, I don't think the book really needs that much of a damning qualifier… :lol:
Re: Thoughts About Transformers Ongoing Issue #26 - Issue Recap, Review, and Some Questions (1294251)
Posted by SpaceSkull on September 28th, 2011 @ 6:33am CDT
Really dig the art. Nice to see something different.
Re: Thoughts About Transformers Ongoing Issue #26 - Issue Recap, Review, and Some Questions (1294259)
Posted by Ravage XK on September 28th, 2011 @ 7:30am CDT
I read it last night. I agree about the art, it looks amazing but I find myself scanning some panels trying to figure out what is going on and with who. It annoyed me slightly and I considered not renewing my subscription but then I saw super Megs in the last panel and I want to know more.
Re: Thoughts About Transformers Ongoing Issue #26 - Issue Recap, Review, and Some Questions (1294297)
Posted by Tigertrack on September 28th, 2011 @ 11:13am CDT
NemesisMonkeySupreme wrote:Livio really needs to stick to just covers. I think the lack of visual storytelling that his art just doesn't provide is making what could be a really good story just something we're all waiting to conclude so we can get to Roberts & Roche.

The comparison to Bill Sienkiewicz is spot on in my opinion. I loved Bill Sienkiewicz' covers on my books (Daredevil, Batman, etc.) back in the day, but I was never a fan of his panel work (Elektra: Assassin, Arkham Asylum, Stray Toasters, etc.) even when the stories were his as well (such as in Stray Toasters).

CHAOS Part 2: NUMBERS would probably be amongst [Michael Bay's] all time favorites.
All things aside, I don't think the book really needs that much of a damning qualifier… :lol:


I actually really enjoyed Bill S.'s interiors on the Spirit Bear issues of New Mutants.
Re: Thoughts About Transformers Ongoing Issue #26 - Issue Recap, Review, and Some Questions (1294337)
Posted by NemesisMonkeySupreme on September 28th, 2011 @ 2:22pm CDT
tigertracks 24 wrote:I actually really enjoyed Bill S.'s interiors on the Spirit Bear issues of New Mutants.


I was never into Marvel's mutants. Was that full-painted or pencils and inks? If the latter, did he do both? On the painted pages, they are always beautiful (even if disturbing) but can often make the story flow kind of crazy…

That's where I make the comparison to Livio's art: it's great to look at but tends to hinder the storytelling. The difference being Bill's is often hyper-kinetic so your eye is everywhere at once, whereas Livio's is so static that you sometimes aren't sure what occurred between two panels and his palette and perspective sometimes make it almost impossible to discern characters.
Re: Thoughts About Transformers Ongoing Issue #26 - Issue Recap, Review, and Some Questions (1294349)
Posted by Tigertrack on September 28th, 2011 @ 2:43pm CDT
NemesisMonkeySupreme wrote:
tigertracks 24 wrote:I actually really enjoyed Bill S.'s interiors on the Spirit Bear issues of New Mutants.


I was never into Marvel's mutants. Was that full-painted or pencils and inks? If the latter, did he do both? On the painted pages, they are always beautiful (even if disturbing) but can often make the story flow kind of crazy…

That's where I make the comparison to Livio's art: it's great to look at but tends to hinder the storytelling. The difference being Bill's is often hyper-kinetic so your eye is everywhere at once, whereas Livio's is so static that you sometimes aren't sure what occurred between two panels and his palette and perspective sometimes make it almost impossible to discern characters.


I'm pretty sure it's painted. And I love Bill's work almost as much as Art Adams, who is probably my all time favorite.
Re: Thoughts About Transformers Ongoing Issue #26 - Issue Recap, Review, and Some Questions (1294567)
Posted by Chaoslock on September 29th, 2011 @ 3:13am CDT
It's not just the art, the whole issue is a pile of slag. The last two technobots sacrificing themself mean that we can forget Computron for good, together with the autobot pretenders who stayed at Kimia (Kimin?)
Re: Thoughts About Transformers Ongoing Issue #26 - Issue Recap, Review, and Some Questions (1294630)
Posted by Tigertrack on September 29th, 2011 @ 10:50am CDT
Chaoslock wrote:It's not just the art, the whole issue is a pile of slag. The last two technobots sacrificing themself mean that we can forget Computron for good, together with the autobot pretenders who stayed at Kimia (Kimin?)


Well, it had been implied from Issue #24 that Afterburner (I think that was who it was) was amongst those over run by Sweeps in the initial siege, so for me without some miracle, which happens, just ask Optimus, Ironhide, Bumblebee, Megatron, Thundercracker...

So for me, nothing is ever final in comics. In fact, when the issue #125 or whatever hits, and we get two new series, I fully expect some resets of characters to happen, and some of those we thought lost will end up just fine somehow.
Re: Thoughts About Transformers Ongoing Issue #26 - Issue Recap, Review, and Some Questions (1294631)
Posted by Tigertrack on September 29th, 2011 @ 10:50am CDT
Chaoslock wrote:It's not just the art, the whole issue is a pile of slag. The last two technobots sacrificing themself mean that we can forget Computron for good, together with the autobot pretenders who stayed at Kimia (Kimin?)


Well, it had been implied from Issue #24 that Afterburner (I think that was who it was) was amongst those over run by Sweeps in the initial siege, so for me without some miracle, which happens, just ask Optimus, Ironhide, Bumblebee, Megatron, Thundercracker...

So for me, nothing is ever final in comics. In fact, when the issue #125 or whatever hits, and we get two new series, I fully expect some resets of characters to happen, and some of those we thought lost will end up just fine somehow.

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