Discussion in 'Transformers Comics Discussion' started by Wadeledge, Nov 21, 2012.
It's a Sweep isn't it?
Yeah, for the next issues cover they have him carrying several Sweep heads as if they're jewelry or something.
Don't pin that on Barber. Her Spotlight (her first appearance in continuity) had her as a maximum-threat-level-whatever-the-hell.
I find myself in the odd position of agreeing with SMOG's overall critique of this book, but disagreeing with him on this specific issue.
He could have toned her down a notch, look at the way a certain other sword wielding bad ass has been handled in the other title. She's being portrayed as an unstoppable emotionless killing machine, with no insight into her motives or further character when there's so much more we can see from her. Did her perpetual slaying of Jihaxus really not help her grow? How does she view her existence now? Is she happy to just be a perpetual shadow and rooftop lurker? Disappointing not to see her character advanced further than being Prowls attack dog.
Wait, really? Before I was like, "Arcee's a mess, I hope they do something with her." Now I'm like "Oh god, why couldn't they just leave her on the sidelines? This is worse."
I think that's EXACTLY why it's a problem if they're dead. You shouldn't kill off characters who haven't done anything interesting. Instead you should MAKE them interesting, and THEN kill them off when they've had their impact. There's a difference between feeling sad that a character is out of the series because you thought they were great, and resenting a character's death because they were discarded without ever having been used. Otherwise, at least leave them around so they can be used for other stories, by other writers down the line. Barber's approach seems to be "Well, I wasn't planning anything for these guys, so I might as well kill them."
However, I agree... they probably aren't dead. But they still went out like chumps. I'm left with far less of an "Arcee is awesome" vibe, and more of a "why do these guys suck so much" feeling? Which is what happens when you write it badly.
I know, they totally could have won the war ages ago. No worries about Megatron... she'll behead him next issue. Because she's a super-ninja who is totally undetectable and totally unstoppable and knows everything, and is like, a super deep character I'm sure.
Normally I wouldn't compare Barber to Costa. But this issue is to Arcee what the Scrapper issue was to Spike. Seriously.
Also a good point. Ratbat, Shockwave, Turmoil, Starscream... none of them have been made out to be capable in the slightest. Starscream has gotten more facetime, but you never really get the sense that he's doing more than blindly blundering along, congratulating himself while apparently having no real plan.
Yeah, but that was never really contextualized or explained. I was hoping that Barber would moderate and flesh out Arcee as a character more, and also start addressing what she can do and why she's apparently capable of wiping out the entire Decepticon high command in a couple of pages. Instead it's just more hype. She is very much the character that everybody was worried Drift would be. It's horrible.
Honestly, this issue is no better, no worse than most of the series so far... except that Arcee stuff pushed it over the edge and left a bad taste in my mouth at the end. It felt incredibly juvenile, and kind of shone an uncomplimentary spotlight on the series' faults for me.
I'm worried now that developing her character further would just deepen the "I'm so brooding and conflicted, but of course completely awesome." mystique of the character... which is very off-putting at this stage.
Also, to make a comparison... look at how subtly Roberts in MTMTE has been gradually building up Magnus. He's still kind of a joke. He's not out being super-awesome. And yet we are gradually seeing how he's held in incredibly high regard by the Galactic Council, how easily he manhandles Cyclonus (who had just displayed his own baddassery by owning Drift), and how subtly crushes Rodimus' arm in the latest issue. The underlying sense of the power this guy (who up till now has been mostly a walking OCD gag) actually holds is carefully reinforced but peripherally. And he doesn't need to jump in and single-handedly defeat the entire DJD to convey that...
I really can't explain why I've gone from hating Arcee to, as someone else said, "love to hate her." I think just giving her more dialogue helps. It's honestly a bit refreshing to have one character in all of RiD who just doesn't seem to give a swot about the glorious future of Cybertron and how hard everything is, boo hoo.
My biggest actual problem with her is her stealth capability. Where DID that come from? She even rubbed our noses in it this issue. What would actually be fun is if Mirage was a third partner.
I think though that it makes sense that her brawn and Prowl's brains can accomplish some pretty epic havoc against a collection of surgically defanged, completely demoralized Decepticons. She didn't build that stun bomb, she would have been trashed without it.
Matter of fact, I suspect she's being set up for a rather large fall against Megatron. Not as big as Prowl's will be when he loses her / she turns on him.
I really enjoyed this issue. It's a lot slower of a pace than RID, but Barber is giving me just enough material to really stay interested.
I'm in agreement with the majority here though, Arcee's character is just dumb.
Sorry, but if all she has to say is spouting "I'm so cool, I'm a cynical anti-hero." cliche dialogue, I'd rather they kept her silent.
Seriously. Soundwave and Ravage are RIGHT THERE. Two guys who should be almost impossible to sneak up on. And she wanders around for an hour setting bombs and killing guys? Yeah, fuck off. No.
And okay, stun bomb... plot device, I get it. But Shockwave? Super-mastermind Shockwave? "I'm so powerful I wiped the floor with the Dinobots, second-only-to-Megatron" Shockwave? Apparently bomb technology has made HUGE advances since the war ended, because Omega Supreme and Shockwave have both been nerfed this issue by magic bombs. And those guys are most certainly made of "sterner stuff".
Yes, because we really need to build up Megatron some more. It's a good thing he's coming, because he's the only one who might be able to stop the all-powerful Arcee.
Well Barber obviously likes the character as is, otherwise:
A)Who's forcing Barber to use her?
B)What's stopping him from toning down her "over the topness" like what Roberts did with Drift?
C)How about making her battles a little more realistic when facing unbeatable odds?
D)If he needed a ridiculously hyped, overzealous, glorified ninja why didn't he use Nightbird from the start. Her origin story was the true lab rat. He could've then brought in a slightly stable Arcee as a counter measure.
^ The only thing I said not to pin on Barber is her threat level.
Don't pin anything else on me!
He's stated that Arcee is his favorite, so no surprises.
Nothing. However, Drift was never portrayed as extremely powerful, just skilled and ruthless. Drift wouldn't have been considered top threat level.
More to the point, Prowl needs clandestine muscle. Toning down Arcee might actually throw a wrench into the story. Remember, if the Decepticons hadn't been taken out (not that it had to happen this way) Megatron would instantly walk over everything.
This is fair. I think her feats were all very understandable until this issue. Now all of a sudden she's undetectable and can block anything.
Because fuck Nightbird.
We don't really know for sure. It's true that Drift was never shown to be exceptionally powerful, he did have a pretty fearsome rep, and we don't know what his overall threat level would be. I mean, "skilled and ruthless" is pretty much Arcee's description. In this case, it's not the character's canonical power levels... it's purely in the way she's written.
I disagree with this, mainly because Prowl's clandestine muscle rests solely on one character, who is already a bit of a WTF choice. If Prowl's threat were reinforced by his OWN power, and by having a network of clandestine agents, of which Arcee was just one valuable example, I might actually buy it. But as it is, all he has is Arcee, and she's WAY twinked out.
It's not even a question of her being taken down a notch by Megatron. The damage has already been done. If you need Megatron to take someone down a notch (and that someone is Arcee) you're doing it wrong.
And has the power to make entirely competent, fearsome characters who deserve far better, to stand around with their thumbs stuck in their exhaust ports while she runs around murdering and posturing and cracking wise.
Y'know, while I agree that Nightbird is really an overrated fanwank character (it's a stretch to call her a character at all, in fact), considering IDW often riffs on and reinvents recognizable G1 figures, he's got a point. Arcee's origin and ninjery would fit Nightbird's motif a lot better. Though regardless, it would still be overplayed.. but at least it wouldn't be quite so incongruous.
Agree with all the other posts regarding Arcee and how over the top and ridiculously powerful she is. Making Shockwave, the most calculating Decepticon look foolish by running round planting bombs in an area where, according to Swindle has ears is insane.
I don't understand how Arcee can claim any kind of moral high ground over Decepticons, she was experimented on by Jhiaxus, who was not a Decepticon, before the war began and spent all those thousands of years chasing him. She's not suffered at the hands of any Decepticon and yet kills them (and defiles their bodies like Sunstorm, dragging her sword through his face) with supreme self-righteousness that is no way justified.
Prowl has lost all his cold, calm, collected coolness he had in AHM, I don't think it'll be too long before he's running through the street yelling curses, trying to kill character A because they saw him murder character B, ordering Arcee to kill character C because they saw him kill characters D and E because character E looked at Prowl in a funny way. The issue would end with half of Cybertron dead and Prowl assuring Bumblebee that the situation is under control.
The casual death and general incompetence shown by the Decepticons (how many are actually left on Cybertron?) really is becoming stupid, I suppose it could be to highlight just how lost they are without Megatron, if they had been this clueless all alone then I don't know how the war lasted so long!
Bumblebee is again shown as a truely useless leader, as Megatron once said in G1, "he couldn't lead androids to a picnic." Yelling insults at Metalhawk while he was being filmed was a brilliant idea when you want to win a general election. Each time Bumblebee has questions or doubts regarding Prowls methods, he's just brushed aside with a line or two of dialogue from Prowl who clearly doesn't like or even respect Bumblebee and treats him like an annoyance rather than a leader.
Plenty. There's still dozens, if not hundreds. And this issue did nothing to change that--the only Cons actually killed were the two guards. And SMOG, concerning this criticism:
There's something I was just reminded of concerning how stern Shockwave in IDW continuity. Bomb technology hasn't been needed to be upgraded--it's been quite capable of taking down guys like Shockwave for some time now. Recall how he was defeated in Maximum Dinobots:
And that bomb wasn't even a special device like the one Arcee used.
awesome issue! roll on issue 12
Er, wasn´t Shockwave running on super energon or some other shit when that happen? I remember something from that issue.
He went into rage mode, pretty much. Think he disabled his logic processors or some such thing and proceeded to beat them. He was also capable of taking on Scorponok without that, so he's still pretty powerful on his own.
Just not Arcee-powerful, evidently.
I will go ahead and pile onto Arcee as well, its just gotten way out of hand. Aside from the implausibility of it, she's basically had the same scene over and over now with various Cons since the beginning, its just tiresome. If there is something "more" to her in all this, some curveball about her motives or where she derives her power/skill, then Barber needs to go ahead and reveal it yesterday. I was really digging the issue prior to her showing up. And I loved Starscream's crown, nice homeage. Guido Guidi artwork great as always, more please.
My hope and dream right now is that when the Chaos Bringer Unicron does finally show up, he will impale Arcee on his fingernail and chomp her as an appetizer the way he did Brainstorm in the old Marvel ongoing. That would rule.
But at the rate we are going, more likely Unicron will eat half the planet, then turn with a startled look in his eyes and see Arcee who proceeds to slice both of his moon-sized arms off with her light sabre thingys in a single stroke somehow. Then she will toy with Unicron and make him beg for mercy for a few panels just for kicks. Starscream will start to ask her how exactly she's doing all this to a planet-sized transformer, but she crushes Starscream's head in mid-sentence, take him off the board as well. the end.
Man this was so good I adore Guido's art I hope he stays. Fabulous issue top notch story minus uber Arcee. It's funny the only bot who ever really treated her was Ultra Magnus. I don't hate the character but jeez ease off the super ninja shtick.
Can you point me to the part of the issue where Arcee took down Shockwave under her own power? Please?
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