Variant Cover art for IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #21 by Kei Zama & Josh Burcham

Variant Cover art for IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #21 by Kei Zama & Josh Burcham

Saturday, June 16th, 2018 4:09am CDT

Category: Comic Book News
Posted by: Va'al   Views: 14,407

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Via the usual source Previews World, and fellow Seibertron.com admin ScottyP, we have two covers for the price of one for the upcoming issue #21 of the IDW Publishing ongoing Transformers comics series Optimus Prime! Why two in one? Because the Kei Zama line art is used for the retailer incentive cover, while the full coloured version by Josh Burcham will be the main variant for the issue.

As for the contents? Check it out below, along with the synopsis, and join the discussion about the two hands featured in the art - probably underrated protagonists of the story thread Aileron and Arcee - as we reach the end of The Falling story arc.

(W) John Barber (A) Sara Pitre-Durocher (CA) Kei Zama
"The Falling," Part 6. Bumblebee and Optimus Prime make a last, desperate bid to return to the real world as Shockwave teams up with the Autobots! Can Optimus stop what's coming, or has he played right into the hands of the ultimate destroyer?
In Shops: Jul 18, 2018


Transformers News: Variant Cover art for IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #21 by Kei Zama & Josh Burcham

Transformers News: Variant Cover art for IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #21 by Kei Zama & Josh Burcham

Credit(s): Previews World


This article was last modified on Saturday, June 16th, 2018 4:10am CDT

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Re: Variant Cover art for IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #21 by Kei Zama & Josh Burcham (1965245)
Posted by Agent 53 on June 16th, 2018 @ 7:39am CDT
So thanks to Amazon we know what IDW were hiding. They appear to be under the mistaken assumption that Bumblebee's resurrection (revealed on one of the Unicron covers months back and confirmed by the Free Comic Book Day issue) is still a secret. He appears in his new evergreen design on the cover.
Re: Variant Cover art for IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #21 by Kei Zama & Josh Burcham (1965247)
Posted by Randomhero on June 16th, 2018 @ 7:48am CDT
Agent 53 wrote:So thanks to Amazon we know what IDW were hiding. They appear to be under the mistaken assumption that Bumblebee's resurrection (revealed on one of the Unicron covers months back and confirmed by the Free Comic Book Day issue) is still a secret. He appears in his new evergreen design on the cover.



They still have to treat it as such.
Re: Variant Cover art for IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #21 by Kei Zama & Josh Burcham (1966196)
Posted by Va'al on June 23rd, 2018 @ 2:55am CDT
We had featured the black and white lineart by artist Kei Zama for the main and variant covers for the IDW Publishing Transformers ongoing comic Optimus Prime #20 right here, and you may have seen the coloured up version by Josh Burcham around too - but to be fair to everyone and share the Beast Wars majesty of the piece, check it out mirrored below from Previews World, along with some detail shots by Zama herself!

(W) John Barber (A/CA) Kei Zama
"The Falling," Part 5. Optimus Prime has faced defeat before and come back... but he's never seen anything like this. Beyond life, beyond death-only the wisdom of an old friend can save him. Meanwhile, Victorion battles Devastator... and only one will survive.

The return of Bumblebee! One shall rise, one shall fall, but who will destroy them all?
In Shops: Jul 11, 2018
SRP: $3.99


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Re: Variant Cover art for IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #21 by Kei Zama & Josh Burcham (1966214)
Posted by Randomhero on June 23rd, 2018 @ 5:50am CDT
Kind of a shame these guys are just background characters in the falling but hey it makes sense that they share looks with prime and megatron with shockwave as their leader
Re: Variant Cover art for IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #21 by Kei Zama & Josh Burcham (1966573)
Posted by Big Grim on June 25th, 2018 @ 5:13am CDT
That really is a bloody gorgeous cover!
Re: Variant Cover art for IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #21 by Kei Zama & Josh Burcham (1969228)
Posted by Va'al on July 7th, 2018 @ 1:46am CDT
The weekend brings us not, not two, but three previews for new comics from the Transformers universe (and what is left from the Hasbro Universe too, I suppose) of IDW Publishing comics!

Starting below, the first is the shorter preview via iTunes for ongoing series Optimus Prime, now on its #20 issue, and entering the final stage of the Falling arc. Check it out, and join the conversation in the Energon Pub before its release next week.

“The Falling,” Part 5. Optimus Prime has faced defeat before and come back... but he's never seen anything like this. Beyond life, beyond death—only the wisdom of an old friend can save him. Meanwhile, Victorion battles Devastator... and only one will survive.


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Re: Variant Cover art for IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #21 by Kei Zama & Josh Burcham (1969231)
Posted by Bounti76 on July 7th, 2018 @ 1:54am CDT
I think it's pretty safe to say that Victorion beats Devastator, given that Pyra Magna and (at least) the helicopter twins are seen in stories set, chronologically, after The Falling arc.
Re: Variant Cover art for IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #21 by Kei Zama & Josh Burcham (1969947)
Posted by Va'al on July 10th, 2018 @ 7:42am CDT
We finally have the full previews for this week's comics from IDW Publishing featuring Transformers, and we're headed for a number of endings - starting with Optimus Prime #20 below! Check it all out, and join the discussion in the Energon Pub as we prepare our review for the release date this new comic book day.

Optimus Prime #20—Cover A: Kei Zama
John Barber (w) • Kei Zama (a & c)
“The Falling,” Part 5. Optimus Prime has faced defeat before and come back... but he's never seen anything like this. Beyond life, beyond death—only the wisdom of an old friend can save him. Meanwhile, Victorion battles Devastator... and only one will survive.
FC • 32 pages • $3.99

Optimus Prime #20—Cover B: Casey W. Coller
John Barber (w) • Kei Zama (a) • Casey W. Coller (c)
FC • 32 pages • $3.99

Bullet points:
The return of Bumblebee!
One shall rise, one shall fall, but who will destroy them all?
B&W variant cover by Kei Zama!


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Re: Variant Cover art for IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #21 by Kei Zama & Josh Burcham (1969965)
Posted by budmaloney on July 10th, 2018 @ 8:11am CDT
I just realized the resemblence of the eye in the Beast Wars game cover

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Re: Variant Cover art for IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #21 by Kei Zama & Josh Burcham (1969969)
Posted by ZeroWolf on July 10th, 2018 @ 8:30am CDT
So bee has been living the other side of a singularity since crystal city, wonder how he repaired him self.
Re: Variant Cover art for IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #21 by Kei Zama & Josh Burcham (1969972)
Posted by Randomhero on July 10th, 2018 @ 8:39am CDT
budmaloney wrote:I just realized the resemblence of the eye in the Beast Wars game cover

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It’s the giant eye ship Galvatron owned from the Japanese Beast Wars cartoon.
Re: Variant Cover art for IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #21 by Kei Zama & Josh Burcham (1970011)
Posted by -Crossfire- on July 10th, 2018 @ 9:55am CDT
ZeroWolf wrote:So bee has been living the other side of a singularity since crystal city, wonder how he repaired him self.


My working theory since "Ghost Stories" is that Bee was resurrected by Ore-14 just before Metalhawk burned the ores out in Dark Cybertron, but didn't "wake up" until he was in the singularity. Note that Bee's death is almost exactly the same as when Shockwave "killed" Dreadwing, so his revival might've also taken some time. Might also explain why Crystal City is in ruins but not completely obliterated.
Re: Variant Cover art for IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #21 by Kei Zama & Josh Burcham (1970192)
Posted by ZeroWolf on July 10th, 2018 @ 7:05pm CDT
-Crossfire- wrote:
ZeroWolf wrote:So bee has been living the other side of a singularity since crystal city, wonder how he repaired him self.


My working theory since "Ghost Stories" is that Bee was resurrected by Ore-14 just before Metalhawk burned the ores out in Dark Cybertron, but didn't "wake up" until he was in the singularity. Note that Bee's death is almost exactly the same as when Shockwave "killed" Dreadwing, so his revival might've also taken some time. Might also explain why Crystal City is in ruins but not completely obliterated.

That actually makes sense, thanks :-)
Re: Variant Cover art for IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #21 by Kei Zama & Josh Burcham (1970266)
Posted by Va'al on July 11th, 2018 @ 3:50am CDT
...and falling...
(Spoiler free-ish)



Synopsis
“The Falling,” Part 5. Optimus Prime has faced defeat before and come back... but he's never seen anything like this. Beyond life, beyond death—only the wisdom of an old friend can save him. Meanwhile, Victorion battles Devastator... and only one will survive.

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MOAR I say


Story
There is something strange happening to this issue, and perhaps affecting the entirety of the arc once the feeling settles in, as we continue with The Falling now on its fifth chapter - and we get to visit the other side of a singular plot point and device that allowed to get this far. Which may or may not work for the readers, especially if you know where we're going with it.

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poor sweet boy


John Barber's writing is phenomenal, mind you, and we have a tightly scripted, well paced, focused action and dialogue balance, and he weaves in so many of the plot points we have seen since the very beginning of this narrative universe that I'm surprised editor David Mariotte is keeping track any more (and surviving unscathed).

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What guns?


The one character to rise out of it, other than Shockwave's larger-than-the-universe weight, and Bumblebee's newly re-established totally-not-a-ghost-because-scifi presence (and narrative voice this issue), is the titular character himself, perhaps in a finally moment too, is Optimus Prime. Or rather, his guilt and messiah complex (Prime Complex?), enabled by both of the other former two and their words / actions - but for a presence that I'm still not entirely on board to accept.

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Jetfire burn


As for corollary stories within the core thread of the issue, there's a lot to be appreciated, in both the flashbacks and the present day cameos and references in Liege Maximo's army of Maximals (yup), and including Armada Cyclonus, Space Case, Noisemaze/Sideways, and the covered Optimus Primal and Megatron once more. Plus, of course, Devastator and Victorion punching each other into the next issue.


Art

There is little praise I haven't yet heaped upon Kei Zama, so there is not too much more I can add here - though perhaps her ink-heavy style can make some of the more busy scenes a little too busy in some points (see some flashbacks, for example, below) - but the recognisable designs from across the franchise in her hands are something just *Italian chef hand kissing gesture* - and Casey Coller finishing off a later sequence is surprisingly well blended in

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Arcee, being the best as always


..which of course is only complemented and complimented by Josh Burcham's still incredible palettes and hues according to the different tonal aspects of the scenes taking place: from a colder fight to a more passionate one, to a dark flashback via a 'rational' exposition, he pieces it all together, and both styles, beautifully.

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So how do you become this good at art?


As for the lettering, and the established choice of narrative frame and captioning that Barber does for his stories, Tom 'Kyle' Long delivers the goods once more, in a mostly silent and subtle (bar Arcee's brutally accurate fighting style) series of action sequences and shots.

It's good to see some more Coller on the covers too, with JP Bove on colours, for a Bumblebee centric Optimus Thirteenth Prime take on the cast of the story (see thumbnail) - and of course the Beast Wars homage from Zama and Burcham is still pretty sweet, too. Check them both out in our database!

Thoughts
Spoilerish ahead

The Falling is an arc that brings down a lot of the narratives that have been established since the beginning of Robots in Disguise, then Transformers, then Optimus Prime, even though some of its seeds were planted all the way back in Spotlight: Shockwave, resurfaced in Dark Cybertron, and only now come to full bloom with Onyx Prime stomping around on everything that had been built - while I am still a little concerned at the ramifications of that, it is still doing so in such a way that makes me want to see more.

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mmmhm


And by seeing more, I put the emphasis on the visual, given how the art team on the book has been sensational and a wild ride from start to finish (not there yet, but I can presume), I cannot wait to see what Shockwave actually has in store (despite my reservations about his and Bumblebee's presence) and what deal will lead Optimus to come to terms with his own lineage and darkness - all in time for Unicron #1.

. :MAXIMAL: :MAXIMAL: :MAXIMAL: :MAXIMAL: out of :MAXIMAL: :MAXIMAL: :MAXIMAL: :MAXIMAL: :MAXIMAL:
Re: Variant Cover art for IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #21 by Kei Zama & Josh Burcham (1970269)
Posted by ZeroWolf on July 11th, 2018 @ 3:59am CDT
Arcee killed thunderhoof...that was a bit mean.
Re: Variant Cover art for IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #21 by Kei Zama & Josh Burcham (1970309)
Posted by ScottyP on July 11th, 2018 @ 8:47am CDT
Remember when Dark Cybertron started to look in retrospect like a work of genius that gave Shockwave and Bumblebee significant, satisfying endings? That sure was a good time last December when I re-read it. Now that's kinda been undone :/
Re: Variant Cover art for IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #21 by Kei Zama & Josh Burcham (1970341)
Posted by Big Grim on July 11th, 2018 @ 9:58am CDT
Another enjoyable enough issue but the treatment of the “Maximals” leaves a bit of a sour taste in my mouth, both here and in Unicron 1.
Re: Variant Cover art for IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #21 by Kei Zama & Josh Burcham (1970425)
Posted by D-Maximal_Primal on July 11th, 2018 @ 6:09pm CDT
ScottyP wrote:Remember when Dark Cybertron started to look in retrospect like a work of genius that gave Shockwave and Bumblebee significant, satisfying endings? That sure was a good time last December when I re-read it. Now that's kinda been undone :/

Now see, I agree with this, but I am also conflicted. Bee should stay dead in my opinion, nice to have him back, but his end was meaningful. Same as Shockwaves.

But with everything set up for Shockwave, almost everything works for him and I really dig the story he set up. Everything astronomical about his plans and about what happened mainly involving him worked. And him coming back was the shock of the entire IDW run. that said, he did have a great ending in Dark Cybertron. so him here again is a little at odds. But still, I think it was 90%+ great
Re: Variant Cover art for IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #21 by Kei Zama & Josh Burcham (1970492)
Posted by ausbot on July 11th, 2018 @ 11:53pm CDT
God I hate this Arcee, I cannot wait for the reboot.
Re: Variant Cover art for IDW Transformers Optimus Prime #21 by Kei Zama & Josh Burcham (1970500)
Posted by ZeroWolf on July 12th, 2018 @ 2:05am CDT
You don't like that she's a monster of a warrior?

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