Swearth (volume 8)

Discussion in 'Transformers Comics Discussion' started by RNSrobot, Aug 24, 2016.

  1. RNSrobot

    RNSrobot Keeper of the Waspinator Swarm. Blam.

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    I know this is a divisive topic, and that many of y'all hate this story.

    Anyway, my MTMTE trade collection is incomplete. I pick them up here and there when I chance upon them at used bookstores or get giftcards to retailers, whatever. Happened upon volume 8 the other day.

    I really liked Swearth. It wasn't nearly as silly or over-the-top as I remembered it. The character story struck me far more. Yeah, it's a sitcom on Earth, but there is some tremendous character work done in it. Not just Swerve, but some hints of Megatron... and Cyclonus.

    His speech at the end is excellent, especially his "Tetrahexian humour. Very dry." And this warm, small smile in his lovely "handsome Earth woman" avatar.

    Anyway, whatever, I'm not going to try to change anybody's mind. But I really enjoyed the story this go around.

    ...

    I'll admit right now that I skipped the personality ticks two-parter. For now. Pretty sure I wish it was a single issue.

    And man, that issue were Ratchet says goodbye is still one of the best.
     
  2. Focksbot

    Focksbot Skeleton Detective

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    Can't remember what I said at the time, but I recall enjoying it as an experimental flourish. The holomatter tech is a huge plothole, as has been discussed on these forums, and the avatars felt a little bit like they were playing up to the demands of cosplayers. Coming after the reality tics two-parter, it also seemed to mark a point in the series where the Plot Proper was stalled for ages in order to spend time with wacky conceits.

    But Swerve's breakdown hit home, the jokes were good, the references fun, and the ending really kicked everything up a notch.
     
  3. Lucas35

    Lucas35 Well-Known Member

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    The bow has several dramatic scenes as Swerve trying to kill himself because he thought no one likes him. I think many people here exaggerated in the criticism.
     
  4. SPLIT LIP

    SPLIT LIP AKA Beve Stuscemi

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    The problem is, any real emotional weight to the story is totally undercut by the utterly moronic plot around it, compounded by the fact that nobody looks like themselves because of the avatars, meaning no connection is properly made to them as characters. Cyclonus' (rather empty to begin with) bit about his dry humour is lost as a character moment because it doesn't look like the Cyclonus we know, and since it's a very un-Cyclonus thing to say, subconsciously there's no connection. It's just some lady we don't know saying something we'd never expect Cyclonus to say. (And he hasn't said anything like it since) This is just an example of the issue with the whole issue.

    Plus it's just so, so stupid and utterly breaks the rules of the world. Not to mention grossly self-indulgent (which has been said about Roberts so much it's lost all meaning when I see it written, but still) with references and the whole thing feeling like nothing at all was accomplished. Because really, what was accomplished? We barely saw Swerve before it, and we've barely seen him afterwards. We've not properly bore witness to either the setup or fallout of this story, add to the fact that due to the insistence of the use of the ridiculous and often ill fitting avatars, the whole issue feels like it did absolutely nothing at all to further any story or even entertain in its own right.
     
  5. rlmiddleton

    rlmiddleton Swoopatron

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    I think meta stories are a bit love or hate sometimes. I'm not a big fan of meta when they try it in some of the big mainstream TV shows as well. I consider it a bit too self-absorbed and cringey. Still, horses for courses and all. The wife loves meta so if she read TF comics (I'm working on it) she'd probably love it.
     
  6. RNSrobot

    RNSrobot Keeper of the Waspinator Swarm. Blam.

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    And I'm not going to try to convince you otherwise. It's fair you don't like it. Nothing I haven't read prior in your argument. All good. Not the point if me starting a new thread about it.

    I didn't hate it to begin, shrugged I suppose, but I enjoyed it to an surprising extent the second go.
     
  7. Autovolt 127

    Autovolt 127 Get In The Titan, Prime!

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    It's one of those issues that should have been dropped.

    Cut this move up some of the issues and put more focus resolving the Getaway/Tailgate/Cyclonus plot of 47 instead of relegating it to a single page in 48. I mean we got the mutiny afterwards but at the time it just really comes off as awkward.

    also cut the personality ticks and just have Thunderclash and Velocity randomly end up encountering The Lost Light while on the Necrobot's planet and they join them there. Make that a two-parter instead of ticks or Swearth.

    Between 41 to 49 outside of the Scavangers was an honest to god mess.

    Dying of the Light needed to be streamlined. Cut Deathsaurus and his team since he ultimately jobbed badly. Overlord could stay since his attitude towards Tarn was at least entertaining but give him a better reason for leaving, like his new masters ordering him back and him being disappointed he can't see the end of this.

    Nickel decides to leave the DJD disgusted by Tarn's actions after killing Vos instead of her telling Deathsaurus to retreat. Nickel could maybe later on pop up as part of Deathsaurus's faction or part of the Circle (Star Saber, Pharma and Tyrest) or Overlord's new Masters or the Galactic Council. Doesn't matter where.
     
  8. Noideaforaname

    Noideaforaname Pico, let's go up to Zuma

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    I waited months before finally reading the issue, for the whole controversy to die down and for me to take it as it is. Didn't help much. Seeing space alien robots (in SPACE!) mention Tumbler and "mansplaining" and Justin Beiber --for no reason other than to make the reference-- tears me irretrievably out of a comic. Not to mention it's just going to be horribly dated in a few short years.
     
  9. SPLIT LIP

    SPLIT LIP AKA Beve Stuscemi

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    It's already dated.

    I am tired of references as a source of humour as it is, but when they're just lazily mentioned with no convincing context, it's just mind-numbing.

    It also makes the universe feel incredibly small that so many characters who have very little relation to Earth make so many references to Earth culture and nothing else. It is painfully low-brow and uncreative. How come nobody quotes a Nebulon program?
     
  10. Coffee

    Coffee (╭☞ꗞᨓꗞ)╭☞

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    I actually liked Swerve a lot in the issue, but the way it was all set up was too much for me to take seriously. We really didn't need child Tailgate to have to read the very comic he is in, before being reminded not to go on Tumblr because it might spoil him. Like with Deadpool it's a trait of the character, but in a comic where fourth wall breaking happened maybe once ever, it comes out of nowhere, and even then it's a fourth wall break that would feel uncomfortable even if it occurred in Deadpool.

    Also as much as I like the way the issue shoots down the belief that Swerve is a one-note, one-dimensional character, it still felt like Roberts was pointing at him shouting: "See! See! He IS three dimensional, I told you!"

    I mean, Swerve is a great character for a number of reasons, but I feel like there could have been better ways of showing it here. If they stripped the issue of the setting and, well, everything except the character moments with Swerve, it could have easily been one of my favourite issues. But it really was an instance of Roberts going too far to appeal to a specific demographic of the fanbase based on what HE thinks that demographic wants.
     
  11. SPLIT LIP

    SPLIT LIP AKA Beve Stuscemi

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    Swerve was established as a three-dimensional character literally years ago, though. He had a greta bit of "I'm not always the funny guy I want people to think I am" in the annual.

    And they didn't have to turn into a literal sitcom.
     
  12. Focksbot

    Focksbot Skeleton Detective

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    OK, so I've just reread it, and I feel pretty much the same way I did at the time: as a one-off experiment, it has its place. It's a really enjoyable read in and of itself, and I don't hold it responsible for the issues I have with how the series concluded. I actually think it's very neat that Swerve complains about not feeling like he's part of 'the main cast' anymore because Megatron's plot arc has dominated the whole season. I like how it gets under the skin of a painfully self-aware character, and it's really nice to see Bluestreak come into his own as well.

    Definitely not the carbuncle that everyone makes it out to be, and I think the charge of self-indulgence on Roberts' part is misplaced. This is brave - trying to do something a bit different, push the boat out as far as it can go. I wouldn't want to return to Sweath, but it was worth the venture.
     
  13. Autovolt 127

    Autovolt 127 Get In The Titan, Prime!

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    Probably because we don't know any Nebulon programs.

    I can understand why he'd stick to Earth shows since we the audience know of it but yeah there is more creativity to be at hand with making up whole new in universe programs.

    As a guy who loves Swerve, probably because he is basically like him, I can agree completely.
     
  14. SPLIT LIP

    SPLIT LIP AKA Beve Stuscemi

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    Wait, Megatron's plot arc dominated the whole season?

    Because it wasn't until Dying of the Light that it felt like his story progressed at all. It didn't dominate the alternate Lost Light arc, or Elegant Chaos, or the personality ticks arc, etc. It's been there, but in the background. Far from "dominating."

    So the suspension of disbelief is just broken, then?

    Because other planets still exist in-universe. Why would they only constantly reference the one?
     
  15. MatrixOfWumbo

    MatrixOfWumbo I see you

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    Would it make any sense to you if somebody quoted a Nubulan program? Nobody reading the book has ever seen a Nubulan program to know that it was a reference.
     
  16. Kevin Iaquinto

    Kevin Iaquinto pull Me under

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    I have re-read that issue about 5 times and it never loses its impact on me.
     
  17. Coffee

    Coffee (╭☞ꗞᨓꗞ)╭☞

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    These are some panels in particular from the issue that I really liked. I actually forgot this exchange occured until I saw them again on tumblr, but it is actually a really great scene in itself.

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    The scene would actually be better without the avatars I think. Just so we could, you know, actually see Swerve saying this. But that's kind of my main beef with the issue. It has some great character moments but the moments are portrayed in kind of the worst way possible.

    Oh of course, but even after that scene there have been plenty of people both on and off tfw that write him off as nothing more than the comic-relief character. Basically people that misinterpret the character and aren't able to see past the jokes, but whatever.
     
  18. Driskull98

    Driskull98 Out of the Silent Planet

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    The annual is one of my favorite issues in general because everything about it flows very well and it feels really simple in its execution. Swerve doesn't need to go on this huge epic mission to become three-dimensional, he just sits and talks with a blind Duobot about it, while not even mentioning himself in the first person. We get some amazing lore and backstory with Cyclonus reciting the Creation Story, and there's an amazing interaction with Ratchet and Drift regarding religion. One of Roberts' best issues to date.

    I. Love it.
     
  19. Wheeljack_Prime

    Wheeljack_Prime Don't eat me

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    Issue 43 in a nutshell:

    "Here's a list of TV shows I like. Also, you wanted to see more holomatter avatars, right? RIGHT?!?!?!?!!?!"
     
  20. Zylly103

    Zylly103 Well-Known Member

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    Honestly, this was my favorite issue of the season. I found it comparable, to some extent, to the shore leave issue of season 1.
     

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