Grumpy old G1 fan reads IDW - in order!

Discussion in 'Transformers Comics Discussion' started by Ryan F, Jan 6, 2016.

  1. Rabid Robot

    Rabid Robot Phase 7er

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    I absolutely agree! IDW one of the only continuity that isn't built around selling toys, which means that they can focus on telling a damn good story. And with revolution, i haven't read it yet (so far i have been staying away from it) so i cant judge it too much, but the idea went too far. If it was an inconsequential crossover like we have seen in the past, then that would be great. But it seems like revolution will always come back to haunt us and we will always get reminded that, somehow, something like micronaughts is connected to the transformers.
     
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  2. ToaArcan

    ToaArcan Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, I really don't like the direction that Ex-RID ended up going, with the "Hasbroverse" stuff. The main reason I only read LL and TAAO was because they basically aren't connected to it.
     
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  3. Infosaur

    Infosaur Well-Known Member

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    I imagine it would have worked a lot better back in the Furman "-ation" days.

    Where the Transformers were still somewhat hidden and GI Joe is going around trying to figure out what is going on, X-Files style.

    MASK being retrofitted Cybertronian Tech mixed with a special forces unit would grow from that.

    Look, Costa couldn't write Transformers for shit, I don't know why, but check out the earlier IDW version of GI Joe which he was a part of. Nobody knew what Cobra was, there was an arms smuggler here, a shady money multinational corp there, and every other politician would exert pressure on the Joe's to "back off, there's nothing there." It was post-9/1 cloak and dagger stuff and it was pretty compelling.

    If only they'd merged the universes back then? It wouldn't be so awkward now.

    and then you get into the truly WTF stuff. Skywarp on GI Joe? Kup, Thundercracker, Hound, maybe. Hell even Rumble makes more sense in an odd way, but Skywarp?!? Somebody must have had the toy.
     
  4. Ryan F

    Ryan F Transform and Roll Out! TFW2005 Supporter

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    Robots In Disguise Annual 2012 – Primus: All Good Things

    While the MTMTE Annual had a very pat resolution in which everything was tied up neatly, its sister comic, the RID Annual, contains events that cannot so easily be undone – that is, the ascent of Starscream to the role of Cybertron’s new leader.

    This has pros and cons. Of the three potential leaders (Starscream, Metalhawk, Bumblebee), Starscream definitely offers the most in terms of storytelling potential; his rise to power certainly throws the cat amongst the proverbial pigeons. We still don’t know whether he’s genuinely interested in the well-being of Cybertron, or whether he has more sinister aims, and all-in-all this is a story strand with much potential.

    On the other hand, Starscream-as-leader seemed the most obvious outcome (If I was writing this, that’s what I’d do), so it doesn’t really offer any sort of surprise. Furthermore, I was kinda looking forward to a proper election, with canvassing and politicking and manifestos and what have you, and having Starscream bypass all that because of a decree by the Metrotitan makes me feel slightly cheated out of a potential juicy storyline. That said, RID can be a bit slow-moving sometimes, so in some respects I do appreciate that this issue moves things along quickly. (However, I do find it a bit odd that – in the issue that finally solves the Starscream/Metalhawk/Bumblebee trilemma, one of the three doesn’t even appear.)

    Interestingly, the whole issue is narrated by Metalhawk. Not the most obvious choice considering that this is predominantly a Starscream/Prowl issue, but it works – as the neutral party in all of this, he’s actually the most qualified narrator out there. Prowl (by trying to keep a lid on the Metrotitan situation) is actually doing the right thing here, but because he’s so bullish and a bad people-person, his actions seem suspicious from everybody else’s point of view. Starscream, on the other hand, is far less capable than Prowl, but because he knows to say the right things in the right places, he comes across more like an affable “man of the people”. But is it all an act?

    We still don’t know. The Metrotitan endorses Starscream, but is that because he sees Starscream as a good leader per se, or is he simply starting Cybertron down a path on which Starscream is just the first stepping stone? The Titan is deliberately vague, but most Cybertronians only choose to hear the bottom line. Only Metalhawk and Omega Supreme (in a lovely coda) are wise enough to ponder the deeper meaning in the Titan’s proclamation.

    On the subject of Omega Supreme, the secondary storyline in this issue takes us back to the bygone days of Cybertron, during the reign of Nova Prime. As with the reign of Zeta Prime after him, it strikes me as bizarre as how the entire planet can get behind such an obvious despot. Only Dai Atlas and Omega Supreme himself seem to realise how evil Nova Prime is, while the rest of the planet seems blissfully accepting (or ignorant) of Prime’s plan to subjugate the rest of the cosmos with his own unique brand of “freedom”. Are Transformers just stupid?

    Once again, Guido Guidi’s deliciously retro art steals the show. The homage is so authentic, even down to the Yomtovian use of block colouring. Barber’s script helps sell the nostalgia, with deliberately-clunky dialogue that’s way less naturalistic than usual. There’s a fine line to tread between a loving homage and a parody, but there’s a genuine sense of affection for the source material here that ensures it never descends into a sour piss-take.

    Ultimately there’s little in these historical sequences that we didn’t already know: Nova Prime and his crew are rotters, Dai Atlas is honourable, Omega Supreme is a noble thinker, Monstructor is less than the sum of his parts, there’s a Metrotitan living beneath the surface of ancient Cybertron, and the Transformer civilisation has always been a trainwreck. But the way in which these scenes are written and drawn make for good reading nevertheless. It’s like watching a film about the French Revolution – we as viewers know how it all ends, but there’s a massive difference between reading about something in a history book, and seeing things happen with our own eyes.

    This was an important issue for RID, so it was imperative that it was done right. I don’t think it’s an all-conquering classic, but it’s a finely crafted issue that pushes the title into a new direction. 4/5
     
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  5. Boatformer

    Boatformer Well-Known Member

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    He's not the leader yet. He's been declared The Chosen One, but that doesn't mean he's in charge.
     
  6. Omegashark18

    Omegashark18 Combaticon turned Autobot

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    The Chosen One prophecy is a big driving force for Starscream going forward.

    It’s true meaning was revealed not too long ago.
     
  7. Ryan F

    Ryan F Transform and Roll Out! TFW2005 Supporter

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    Cheers for the clarification, I guess I just misread it. It certainly seems though as his coronation is virtually in the bag, given that the Metrotitan proclamation was head by virtually everybody. I get the impression it’s virtually a fait accompli?
     
  8. Wrecker217

    Wrecker217 There's a 50 character limit to titles. Now you kn

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    To the voters its essentially an endorsement from god for Starscream, declaring him the one who will unite Cybertron. To see if they will actually vote for him to be their leader, that's another thing.
     
  9. Knightdramon

    Knightdramon Hasbro LIES to the US

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    I can draw infinite parallels to modern-day politics, even in our country right now. There's more of Nova's story down the line, but as alluded in Optimus's Spotlight and Revelations, most of the population was very unaware of what was truly going on. To his credit, Nova did do -a lot- of stuff right, but for the wrong reasons ;) 
     
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  10. Ryan F

    Ryan F Transform and Roll Out! TFW2005 Supporter

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    Yeah, this is definitely true: do the general public care what their politicians get up to, so long as the trains run on time (so to speak)?

    Even in British history, the people here in Victorian times celebrated the Empire as something to be proud of, even though - to modern eyes, it was a horror-show to say the least. Nova’s dreams of spreading “freedom” to other worlds sounds exactly like the words of English missionaries and imperialists forcibly spreading their own doctrines and “civilisation” to other continents, all the while being cheered on by the general public.
     
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  11. Knightdramon

    Knightdramon Hasbro LIES to the US

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    Yeah, the difference in this instance is that Nova was not open about wanting to civilise the stars; the Ark was branded an exploration vessel. In many ways I find him very similar to Megatron early in the war in what he wanted to do, but a tad more on the...extreme right spectrum and having a Prime lineage that had an instant level of authority back then.

    You do catch glimpses of the whole story later on [I find MTMTE and RID very reminiscent to the actual Game of Thrones books in that there's world-building over the span of many issues]. Saying any more might spoil expectations but at this rate we'll have plenty of more TFNations together before mutual friends spoil other things before me haha.

    I hope you continue to enjoy both series, I always liked MTMTE a lot more from the get-go but your takes on RID remind me of what I felt were the good bits back then.
     
  12. ToaArcan

    ToaArcan Well-Known Member

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    Reading these posts makes me nostalgic for the old days of RID2012, before the Hasbroverse shite overtook it. I think I'll go back and re-read it.
     
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  13. Infosaur

    Infosaur Well-Known Member

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    I always looked upon it as a sort of political endorsement.

    But looking throughout history how many leaders have claimed "God is on our side!"?

    Heck there are probably a few bots that would actually vote AGAINST anyone proclaimed "Chosen One" by a Titan.

    It's interesting that this is the first time in millennia that Cybertronians are "trying" democracy (and making a right hash of it) this is a good example of a "subtle" influence the humans are having on TFs (as opposed to more flagrant and frankly BS stuff in other times) but is Earth the only place in the universe where Democracy is practiced?

    Now, there's an interesting question.

    Are some galactic societies post-democracy? Are democracies fated to fail into socialism as De Tourquvile (sp?) predicted? Is a military meritocracy the most effective way to conduct interplanetary society? (Roddenberry AND Heinlen!) Or is it wild Wild West style anarchy?
     
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  14. Ryan F

    Ryan F Transform and Roll Out! TFW2005 Supporter

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    More Than Meets The Eye #9: Shadowplay, Part 1 – Post Hoc

    A few people in this thread have been bigging-up Shadowplay recently, so I hope it’s as good as you’ve built it up to be…

    Although I have no idea where this is going yet, or what the ‘end point’ of the flashback is going to be, what I can say for sure is that it’s another slice of classic MTMTE. Foreshadowing, witty repartee, attention to detail, in-jokes, and a shock cliffhanger – this is the series in a nutshell.

    I’ve always loved the subgenre of the ‘Transformer historical”, ever since I read State Games as a kid on Christmas Day 1986. I get a kick out of diving into Transformer lore (I wore out my VHS of “War Dawn”), and many of my favourite Transformers comics and cartoon episodes are those that delve into the backgrounds and origins of our favourite characters. I just love the universe-building, the way that past events inform the present narratives, and the way in which the world of the Transformers seems fuller and more epic as a result. It’s like all those appendices and historical bits at the end of Lord of the Rings – it all adds to the feeling that these characters exist in a real world beyond the page.

    So, in an attempt to heal Rung’s brain, the Lost Light crew take turns to tell a story of ye olde Cybertron, a time when circumstance and fate brought their paths together, millions of years ago. Being part 1 of a multi-part story, it’s not altogether clear yet how things will come together. We have two disparate stories here: Prowl and Chromedome investigate an assassination, while Ratchet and Drift cross paths with each other after the latter is rescued from a street fight by Orion Pax. Presumably the two threads will converge at some point, but for now we’re in the dark.

    Roberts is teasing us here – the Senator who rebuilt Prime in Chaos Theory shows up again, and yet again the script goes to great lengths to avoid revealing his name. Conversely Roller gets mentioned a couple of times, but we don’t see him. Chromedome has a mysterious alternative name, but again we don’t find out what it is. Presumably we’ll be getting some shocking reveals down the line, but at the risk of looking silly, I’m going to speculate right now that the Senator turns out to be Skids (hence Skids’ missing memories in the present day). We’ll see how that one pans out. The fact that this issue introduces the concept of a ‘relinquishment clinic’, which allows Transformers to completely change their bodies, is probably not a coincidence.

    Back on the Lost Light, we find out that Red Alert has been decapitated (by Overlord?). After what happened to Sunstreaker, Ironhide and Rung, I’m very wary of accepting any Transformer as truly dead, so I’m essentially numbed to this type cliffhanger these days. I’m also quite concerned that the investigation into Red Alert’s death might take valuable page time away from the flashbacks in part two – the flashbacks are great, and I’d be disappointed if next issue takes some of the focus away from those.

    It’s hard to say too much more about this, simply because it’s the opening chapter and so much is shrouded in mystery. However it does do what all good ‘part ones’ should do – ratchet up the anticipation for the next instalment. I’m extremely eager to read what happens next, and I think really that’s all that matters at this stage. This is a comic that’s all set-up – setting things in motion, putting characters into place… it’s a bit like a chess game, in that respect.

    Overall this is a fun, intriguing entry into the canon, but obviously what happens in the concluding part(s) will retrospectively make or break this. It has all the trademark elements of a classic Transformers issue, now the next issue has the unenviable task of building on those elements and raising the stakes even more. 4/5
     
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  15. Omegashark18

    Omegashark18 Combaticon turned Autobot

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    I’m glad your already enjoying this great arc. In this one we dive way into the corrupt place that is Pre-War Cybertron.

    You should know that is arc runs through three related genres in each of its three parts: this one is the police procedural. The opening scene was the obligatory CSI-style pre-credits sequence where two unimportant characters find the body.

    This arc is also a sequel to Chaos Theory.

    The Senator’s identity gets revealed at the end, I won’t say anymore.

    So I hope you get to the next issues fast! :D 
     
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  16. ToaArcan

    ToaArcan Well-Known Member

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    Oooh, it's time!

    Easily one of my favourite MTMTE arcs, along with Remain in Light, Overlord, and Dying of the Light.
     
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  17. Natephoenix

    Natephoenix DoodleBot

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    Oh, I'm so glad you've reached Shadowplay. It's easily one of the best parts of MTMTE for world building.
    I'd take a whole comic of Prowl and Chromedome investigating crimes, any day.
     
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  18. gregles

    gregles quintesson

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    Anyone who does any kind of spoilers at this point is officially a scumbag. No excuses.

    It’s noteworthy to mention that on the forums here no one correctly guessed the results to these mysteries even though we had a really long running thread dedicated to predicting the senator one you identified.

    Glad you have been suitably intrigued. In a way it’s a shame we have probably built up anticipation levels to unrealistic Star Wars levels as it’s not the kind of instant gratification kind of story arc to please everyone but I really like it because it’s quite challenging and ambitious in ways that transformers fiction rarely ever is.
     
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  19. That Guy

    That Guy Well-Known Member

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    It's time! It's time!
     
  20. Coffee

    Coffee (╭☞ꗞᨓꗞ)╭☞

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    I loved Shadowplay, and think it's definitely one of the better stories in the IDW canon. I don't think it's perfect, and the way one of the threads "resolves" didn't sit well with me at the time, and still doesn't. It's a minor detail compared to the broader picture, however, and I think the conclusion of this arc got the biggest reaction out of me out of any Transformers product. And while this arc isn't remotely "old", I was still in Highschool when this came out, so i think my reaction at the time might have reflected my standards back then, which are now immensely different. Still, I reread Shadowplay somewhat recently and still found it fantastic, so maybe I haven't changed too, too much.
     

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