Monday, May 5, 2014

Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye #28

Folks, if that cover doesn't get your attention, I'm not sure we can be friends. 

What kind of a world do we live in where my favorite comic is Transformers? Am I 10 years old again? James Roberts has done the impossible; he’s writing a toy comic that is actually at the top of my stack when it comes out.

Dark Cybertron happened, OK? Enough said. Let’s move on to “Season 2” of the Lost Light and their quest for the Knights of Cybertron. As the characters often state, the supposed destination of the Autobot ship is less important than the journey, so once again the strength of the issue lies in the characterization and in the seeding of future plots. Roberts seeded his first 20 or so issues better than any other author I can think of in MTMtE #1, so let’s see how many I can spot now.

The cast is expanding in a big way. We’ve got Bluestreak. We’ve got Nautica (how did the franchise exist for so long without female characters?) Private investigator Night Beat smells a mystery in some missing door numbers. We’ve got our old favorites coming back like Rung, Swerve, and Ultra Magnus. Do you really think Chromedome is just sitting around grieving? Or is there something else going on?

But where’s the illustrious leader? Why have we not seen Hot Rod on the ship? Did something happen between him and new Captain Megatron?

That’s right, the Lost Light, an Autobot ship, is now under the command of Megatron. And it is clearly his ship. Ultra Magnus, Blaster, and Perceptor all salute him when he finally makes it to the bridge. But not everyone is happy; we see Whirl try to instigate Megatron into a brawl. And for once, Whirl isn’t acting on his own; this is part of a bigger plan.

There are a lot of flashbacks in this issue, as we see Megatron prepare for his trial. My biggest gripe about this is that Roberts writes a fantastic Prowl, but we know that Prowl ends up in the cast of Robots in Disguise, so the police car’s time in this book is limited. (Who would have thought that Prowl would become such a valued part of the Transformers mythos?)

And then, a coffin. Who’s in it? Rewind? Drift? Another new character? I can’t get enough of this book. Roberts has done such a good job in the past, I’m certain there are more narrative seeds here to bear fruit in future issues.

Alex Milne’s art. What can I say? The guy does some of the best big robots I’ve ever seen. He has made me love characters I used to despise, Ultra Magnus being the best example. I spend each and every issue looking in backgrounds to see who Milne sneaks in so I can pore over the details. Any chance for more Hound or some more G1 classics? I’d love to see Brawn get involved again…

This is an EXCELLENT long-form science fiction comic with a top-notch cast and a rewarding story. Don’t think of it as a toy comic. Think of it as the one of the most consistently written, best illustrated books on the stands.

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