New to transformer comics

Discussion in 'Transformers Comics Discussion' started by ShockNsaw, Jul 11, 2020.

  1. ShockNsaw

    ShockNsaw Cleaning up trash and kicking Decepticon...

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    I have collected comics for most of my life but i have never gotten into transformers comics, What is a good story ark or set that you would recommend to really bring me in and get excited about the stories of Cybertron? Thanks for the advice.
     
  2. Longitudinalwave

    Longitudinalwave A Big Fan of (Sound/Shock)wave

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    Hi! Welcome to the board!
    I'm more familiar with the cartoons than the comics, but of the ones I'm familiar with, I would recommend:
    The Transformers (1984-1991)-US
    #1-12 (#4-8 are the best of this bunch)
    #17-18 (the "Return to Cybertron" story)
    -the Headmasters miniseries (#1-4).
    #47-50 (the Underbase saga. Featuring the best of Marvel Starscream and the worst of killing off old toys to make way for new ones.)
    #56-59 (Megatron returns; Ratchet sacrifices himself to stop him)
    #60-75 (the Matrix/Unicron arc)
    And, if you like totally bonkers storytelling: #31, Buster Witwicky and the Car Wash of Doom
    The Transformers (1984-1992)-UK
    #47-50 (Dinobot Hunt)
    #78-88 (Target: 2006. Starring Galvatron and the Wreckers.)
    #136-137 (Ladies' Night)
    #164-169 (City of Fear/Legion of the Lost/Meltdown, all one story. Starring the Wreckers and zombies.)
    #182-187 (Space Pirates. Quintessons steal the Matrix. Soundwave homages The Killing Joke.)
    #199-205 (Time Wars. Galvatron vs everyone and time itself.)
    #255-260 (Perchance to Dream, a series of great character pieces. Sadly, their place in continuity is uncertain.)
    #275 (Secrets-it's part of the continuity nightmare known as Earthforce, but it's a great little story that shows off Marvel Soundwave at his best)
    -"State Games"-a story from the 1986 annual.
    -"The Magnificent Six"-a story from the 1991 annual.
    Something to keep in mind about both the US and UK runs of the original Marvel comic is that they have absolutely enormous casts. Only a few members of the cast will get any real focus or page time, but the ones that do will be handled really well.

    There's a general over-arching story, but not to the point where you can't read issues on their own merits.

    IDW (2005-2018)
    A lot of this is just characters that I happen to like, but:
    -Spotlight: Shockwave (The Transformers: Spotlight #1). IDW Shockwave at his best, before the writers went nuts with him and decided to make him single-handedly responsible for literally everything that happened in Cybertron's past.
    -The Transformers: Robots in Disguise #22 (Soundwaves). Basically Spotlight: Soundwave.
    -The Transformers #22-23 (Chaos Theory). Featuring a great Optimus Prime/Megatron dynamic, great world building, and a great reveal about Shockwave.
    -Last Stand of the Wreckers #1-5. A great, but very bleak, miniseries.
    -Sins of the Wreckers #1-5. The sequel to Last Stand.
    I haven't really read enough of IDW to make any more recommendations.
     
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  3. TheWarPathGuy

    TheWarPathGuy Unkempt Introvert (I actually bathe everyday.)

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    Alot of people enjoy the American Marvel G1 stuff.
    Dreamwave pretty cool too.
    IDW is the most popular version of the franchise. My favorite arcs are the Simon Furman stuff and All Hail Megatron. People really like MTMTE, too. Past Dark Cybertron, is when things get mixed or negative.
    IDW2 the current version of the franchise is fine. I was told it gets better later on, but I dropped off due to the art and really slow story. I heard galaxies was good though.

    Edit: oh, I forgot about the Spotlights. Their cool too! Shockwave, Soundwave, Grimlock and the others are cool stories. Maximum Dinobots and Last Stand of the Wreckers are cool too.
     
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  4. Longitudinalwave

    Longitudinalwave A Big Fan of (Sound/Shock)wave

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    I totally forgot about Galaxies! The first six issues are excellent. The seventh one has started a new storyline; I'm not sure what to think of it yet.
     
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  5. Agamus

    Agamus Not an Iguana

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    Marvel Transformers:
    The Transformers US (1984) #1 - The very first Transformers comic (and first piece of Transformers fiction ever)
    The Transformers UK (1984) #113 - Noted for being the issue that hooked MTMTE author James Roberts to TF
    The Transformers US (1984) #56 - The first issue of The much-lauded Furman run of Marvel US TF

    IDW 2005 Transformers:
    Infiltration #0 - The first issue in IDW G1 Transformers, and the definitive starting place in the continuity as a whole
    Spotlight: Shockwave - The first issue in the Spotlight series, which sets up some very important lore
    Megatron Origin #1-4 - The first standalone prequel comic in IDW TF
    Last Stand of the Weckers #1-5 - Largely considered the best miniseries in all of TF
    More than Meets the Eye (2012) #1 - Everyone says this. Seriously everyone. It's the issue that got me and a lot of other people into IDW TF.

    IDW 2019 Transformers:
    Galaxies #5-6* - Just a fun two-shot about Cliffjumper. I'd avoid the main 2019 series like the plague if I were you (no pun intended).
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2020
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  6. Magnus' Mate

    Magnus' Mate Well-Known Member

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    I always recommend the original Marvel (US and especially, UK) comics. The UK comic reprinted all the US stories, but also wove it's own stories in between, creating a vast and exciting saga. As a big fan, I would suggest reading it all (as there is so much continuity and connections throughout, so you would get more out of it) but if you are looking for particular arcs:

    Marvel (US) #5-12 (the "New Order" storyline).
    Marvel (UK)#78-88: Target 2006
    Marvel (US) #17-18: Return to Cybertron
    Marvel (UK) #47-50: Dinobot Hunt
    Marvel (UK) #146-151: Legacy of Unicron

    The last 24 issues of the US comics also forma a fantastic epic run, but I would really read some earlier stuff before tackling those.

    If you want a more modern take, check out IDW's Infiltration and Stormbringer.
     
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  7. Angry Slug Productions

    Angry Slug Productions Member

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    hey if you want, i am making a playlist full of audiobooks for the comics. i currently have finished megatron origin, and spotlight orion pax. im still working on the comics as i type this. im following the IDW transformers comics continuity.

    YouTube
     
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  8. Cliffjumper

    Cliffjumper And awaaaaaay we go!

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    Stay away from the dreamwave stuff for a bit.

    The company pretty much went bankruot and never finished its comics.
     
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  9. artiepants

    artiepants Transformers '84!!!

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    There are some distinct eras to consider:

    from the 80s:
    Marvel and Marvel UK:
    Marvel ran for 80 issues + a few mini series
    Marvel UK published the Marvel stories, but they published shorter stories weekly, so they quickly caught up to Marvel US and started to create their own stories. I believe sometimes they stood alone and sometimes they danced between the raindrops of the Marvel US tales.

    The art from the time is a different beast, and runs from serviceable to bad. I love Andrew Wildman and Geoff senior who were the latter day artists.

    the beginning (first 12-14 issues or so) and end of the Marvel US run (after Simon Furman takes over as writer) are the best of it.

    From the early 00s:
    Dreamwave:
    reintroduced G1 to the modern audiences: had art that ranged from amazing to horrible, their were 2 miniseries and an ongoing that sadly never finished: the ongoing was my favorite iteration of TF fiction ever. A lot of the color work was amazing and looked practically like animation cells.

    the also published "The War Within": 3 miniseries (the third went unfinished) of the war on Cybertron. The first one is pretty great, the 2nd didn't leave and impression.
    They also did a TF/GIJoe miniseries and a series based on the Armada and Energon toylines ~ they Energon series would have transitioned to Cybertron, but Dreamwave folded before Energon was finished.

    Devils Due:
    in the early 00s Devils Due held the G.I.Joe license. They did 4 G.I.Joe -vs- Transformers miniseries, pretty fun, and a couple of them had great art, but also totally inconsequential.

    IDW 1.0:

    the current license holder started, I believe, in the late 00s and has had several phases:

    Phase 1: the -ation era. Several miniseries written by Simon Furman that utilized names ending with the -ation suffix (Infiltration, Escalation) along with a number of side stories told in Spotlights (one shots) and miniseries. Lots of cool world building and a really well thought out plot line that was a bit hamstrung by the publishing format and art that ranged from amazing to... not amazing. I really dug it, but it also suffered from a hurried wrap up.

    Phase 2: All Hail Megatron: 1 12 issue Maxie series with a 4 part Coda. apparently people hated it as it came out. I read it after the fact in trade and thought it was pretty great. awesome art by Guido Guidi.

    Phase 3:
    the IDW Transformers ongoing. (when things start going off the rails) This era was spearhead by a writer who wrote some brilliant GIJoe books for IDW, but he just didn't know what to do with Transformers (I believe he even said as much). Generally had good art, although at the beginning they tried a weird experiment of mixing G1 and Bay Movie designs, and it just didn't work very well. This era also saw Last Stand of the Wreckers, which a lot of folks (myself included) think is one of the best pieces of TF fiction ever done (just avoid the sequel like the plauge).

    Phase 4:
    the twin ongoing books More then Meet the Eye/Robots in Disguise. 2 ongoing books set post war. I'm sure many folks on this forum will disagree with me, but this is when the train completely left the tracks for me. years and years of forced go nowhere story telling trying to figure out a conflict, wholesale character rewrites, if not full on character assassinations, a lot of horrid art, odd pastel coloring, it's just a mess. there was a crossover called Dark Cybertron in this phase that might be the worst comic story I've ever read. (not TF comic story, worst of anything, and I bought a LOT of crappy image books in the 90s)

    Phase 5:
    the ongoings are rechristened Lost Light and Optimus Prime, IDW awkwardly tries to reverse engineer a "Hasbro Cinematic Universe" (that apparently no one wanted, or the books were just so bad no one cared) with GIJoe, ROM, Micronaughts and a few other licenses (did any of those other books even last a year?) and eventually it was such a hot mess they had to bring in Unicron to wipe the slate clean. I didn't read any of this, but reviews and previews lead me to believe it was pretty much a total poop-show and that I didn't really miss anything. Seems like even a lot of the folks that loved the Phase 4 stuff weren't really feeling the Phase 5 stuff.

    generally, this was all supposed to be 1 universe, but you can kind of break it up between Phase 1, phase 2 & 3, and Phase 4 & 5

    IDW 2.0:

    The current era. They've printed like 30 comics between the main book and the ancillary Galaxies book, and the war between the Autobots and Decepticons hasn't even started yet. This is not what I'm looking for in my Transformer fiction. Also, a lot of the art I've seen in previews is also... not what I'm looking for in my Transformer fiction.

    They are also launching Transformers 84, a book that will fill in some of the backstory for the original Marvel run written by Simon Furman and Guido Guidi: I have high hopes but low expectations.

    I think that covers it off in broad strokes!
     
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2020
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  10. Optimus141

    Optimus141 Well-Known Member

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    I just started the 2019 reboot by IDW and I'm enjoying it. If you're looking for action,though, I'd look somewhere else. This is more of a drama then a " War for Cybertron" battle series.

    I'm probably going to start reading the previous reboot that ended in 2018 because I've heard it's a fun series.
     
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  11. CyberstormSM

    CyberstormSM Turbo-Revvin' Young Punk

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    I think it's officially broken up into just two phases; Phase 1, which starts with the -ations and ends with the Costa run, and Phase 2 which starts with More than Meets the Eye and Robots in Disguise and ends with Unicron. The Death of Optimus Prime acts as a sort of midpoint between the two.
     
  12. artiepants

    artiepants Transformers '84!!!

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    sure, you can say that officially, but I think it thematically and stylistically breaks up a lot cleaner the way I noted it, and you could read any of those first 4 phases fairly standalone (maybe other then why a motley group is stranded on Earth at the beginning of Phase 3). Each has a fairly clear beginning and ending. (and, as most know, All Hail Megatron was originally conceived as a stand-alone story and then retconned onto Furman's "-ation-verse."
     
  13. TheWarPathGuy

    TheWarPathGuy Unkempt Introvert (I actually bathe everyday.)

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    It is 2 phases, but I think it works better as 5 phases, just because the comics were relaunched five times until their end.