Road Trip with the Transformers, Entry 3 — Transformers #3

Road Trip with the Transformers is what happens when you take a guy who grew up with Transformers (well, Robots in Disguise and the Unicron Trilogy, anyway), who was mildly interested in IDW’s Transformers comics — but too scared to dip too far in — and give him a rebooted Transformers comics line. With this, I’ll be quickly reviewing and then commenting on IDW’s new Transformers comic universe that began in March of 2019! The review will be spoiler-free, while commentary will not. With this, I’ll be chronicling my experience as someone who is a lapsed fan of the franchise from childhood, who has only read a few of the previous IDW Transformers comics. Expect me to forget characters’ names, find it hard to tell them apart and have little to no understanding of references to previous continuities! Does that sound like fun? No? Well, you’re coming along anyway! It’s a road trip! Roll out!

This entry is super late because university eats my time and energy. The Transformers toy hunt is going well, however! I now know the good spots and the good sites, so my onslaught of Siege toys is shaping up nicely. It’s also a nice way to get some exercise into my life of comics and video games. The problem now is that I need a place to put these that isn’t the corner of my desk. Seriously, this is the most claustrophobic war zone ever!

20190421_001410
This is getting harder with more toys.

Moving on, the last issue of Transformers was a sluggishly paced exposition dump. We learned more about this new version of Cybertron, but it was mostly limited to random jargon and factoids. However, we did meet Chromia, Prowl and Wheeljack, whose characterisation was fine as a reasonable authority figure, jerk cop and talkative scientist, respectively, and we caught a glimpse of Soundwave. The Ascenticon rally in Tarn, held by Megatron, was attacked by some unknown entity. We also know that Chromia’s security forces are spread thin, and that The Rise are the prime suspects in Brainstorm’s murder — Chromia has ordered the arrest of every member as a result, which can only turn out well! On the good end of worldbuilding, we know that The Rise want the same things as the Ascenticons, but are just more violent about it. Meanwhile, Bumblebee and Rubble were just kind of laying about. It doesn’t sound like much has happened, does it? That’s because it hasn’t. Hopefully things pick up and there’s less focus on disconnected world-building. Here is Transformers (2019) #3.

Continue reading “Road Trip with the Transformers, Entry 3 — Transformers #3”

Advertisements

Road Trip with the Transformers, Entry 2 — Transformers #2

Road Trip with the Transformers is what happens when you take a guy who grew up with Transformers (well, Robots in Disguise and the Unicron Trilogy, anyway), who was mildly interested in IDW’s Transformers comics — but too scared to dip too far in — and give him a rebooted Transformers comics line. With this, I’ll be quickly reviewing and then commenting on IDW’s new Transformers comic universe that began in March of 2019! I’ll be chronicling my experience as someone who is a lapsed fan of the franchise from childhood, who has only read a few of the previous IDW Transformers comics. Expect me to forget characters’ names, find it hard to tell them apart and have little to no understanding of references to previous continuities! Does that sound like fun? No? Well, you’re coming along anyway! It’s a road trip! Roll out!

Before I get into the comic, I just want to say that I’m looking to buy Transformers toys now because I liked the first issue of the comic and dig the character designs — Chromia on the cover of this issue looks pretty great, for example. Plus just a general nostalgia for my childhood. The problem? I didn’t realise how hard the Siege toys are to find! Seriously, Australia is not a good place to live if you want access to Transformers toys, and I can’t wait for Toys R’ Us to make its comeback. Although I did manage to get lucky and find a Target that had a bunch of Wave 2 stuff on my first day of looking.

20190325_002811.jpg
I also learned that posing is hard, especially when one toy has slim legs and a gigantic backpack.

Anyway, back to the comic. Last issue introduced us to the world of Cybertron and what will probably be our main cast of characters for a while: Rubble, Bumblebee, Windblade, Orion Pax and Megatron. Also, Ironhide was there. It had some great art, an interesting world and did a good job pacing itself and not overwhelming me as a new reader. The lettering was off though, which kind of took away from the issue overall. Let’s hope that’s not the case here. Anyway, here is Transformers (2019) #2!

Continue reading “Road Trip with the Transformers, Entry 2 — Transformers #2”

Road Trip with the Transformers, Entry 1 — Transformers #1

Road Trip with the Transformers is what happens when you take a guy who grew up with Transformers (well, Robots in Disguise and the Unicron Trilogy, anyway), who was mildly interested in IDW’s Transformers comics — but too scared to dip too far in — and give him a rebooted Transformers comics line. With this, I’ll be quickly reviewing and then commenting on IDW’s new Transformers comic universe that began in March of 2019! The review will be spoiler-free, while commentary will not. With this, I’ll be chronicling my experience as someone who is a lapsed fan of the franchise from childhood, who has only read a few of the previous IDW Transformers comics. Expect me to forget characters’ names, find it hard to tell them apart and have little to no understanding of references to previous continuities! Does that sound like fun? No? Well, you’re coming along anyway! It’s a road trip! Roll out!

Here it is, Transformers #1! I was way more excited for this than I should’ve been, not helped by a lot of media I’ve been consuming in the past few months essentially pandering to my nostalgia. Anyway, on with the review road trip! Today, there’s only one issue to look at, though I expect that to change soon enough. For now, we have the first instalment of this brave new world: Transformers (2019) #1!

Continue reading “Road Trip with the Transformers, Entry 1 — Transformers #1”

Picking at the Pieces of “X-Men Disassembled”

Yeah, I’m not done with this story. Guys… I have things to do. I need to take a government exam to be able to even enrol in some teaching units for my master’s. I haven’t finished Red Dead Redemption 2 yet. I need to finish Bodyguard and The Protector because I told a friend I would. I’m trying to finish The Name of the WindAncillary Justice and The Night Circus. There’s things I can be doing, is what I’m saying. And yet, I keep coming back to this. Because it keeps calling me back.

“X-Men Disassembled” was meant to be the big X-Men relaunch of 2018. Kicking off a new series of the flagship title, Uncanny X-Men, when finally the X-Men team books would be consolidated into one title… and what we got was a weekly series that couldn’t even justify its own existence without spoiling its own ending — on the day of the first issue’s release, Marvel announced the Age of X-Man event; that name told everyone all they needed to know about it — an alternate world where the story would be told through numerous miniseries, with X-Man (Nate Grey) playing a key part. Well… okay then, so what’s the point of reading this story? There didn’t seem to be one.

The three writers — Ed Brisson, Kelly Thompson and Matthew Rosenberg — clearly knew where they were headed with this story, but the way they got there was one of the most badly executed stories I’ve ever seen. See, we knew where it was headed. Clearly. So they needed to give us other reasons to read, while also setting up the status quo for after “X-Men Disassembled” ends — the return of Cyclops and Wolverine. Well, let’s have a look at this series and see what they came up with, shall we? Let’s see what the different plot threads amounted to and how this story went out. Continue reading “Picking at the Pieces of “X-Men Disassembled””

Best New Comic Series of 2018

Here’s a list that I actually really enjoy doing. Unlike the top issues, it’s not hard to recall — I can remember a good series much easier than a good issue. With this list, the series is judged as a whole, not by one single standout issue. At the same time, it’s a very positive list, unlike me lambasting the worst of the year. The main condition is that the series needs to have started in 2018 and had at least an arc or so; meaning anything with less than that by the time 2019 came around isn’t allowed on the list. I will make note of those newer series, however, since, quality is quality and should be praised. So without further delay (yes, this list is fairly late), here are my best new comic series of 2018. Continue reading “Best New Comic Series of 2018”

Iron Fist (2017) #1 Review

Written by Ed Brisson
Art by Mike Perkins
Colours by Andy Troy
Published by Marvel
Cover price: $3.99 USD

With the mixed reception to his portrayal in David Walker’s Power Man and Iron Fist and a bigger spotlight due to Netflix’s Iron Fist series, Ed Brisson was probably under a lot of pressure to get Iron Fist right, which isn’t exactly an easy task. The last time the character was really relevant was Ed Brubaker and Matt Fraction’s amazing Immortal Iron Fist run, which had a darker approach to the character while also embracing the martial arts and mysticism elements and building his world in interesting ways. Brisson is seemingly trying to recapture that spirit, and his first issue does a good job setting up something hopefully great, but can’t help but feel a bit generic. Continue reading “Iron Fist (2017) #1 Review”

Batwoman: Rebirth #1 Review

Written by Margurite Bennett and James Tynion IV
Art by Steve Epting
Colours by Jeromy Cox
Published by DC Comics
Cover price: $2.99 USD

I don’t think  its wrong to say that Batwoman has stumbled a bit over the last few years. Her solo stories in Detective Comics and Batwoman started strong, but then J. H. Williams III wasn’t allowed to marry Kate and Maggie Sawyer and rage quit the series, and DC rushed to find a replacement lest they take their time and screw up their precious numbering, and the result was Marc Andreyko’s thoroughly disliked run. After petering out, Batwoman would be banished to comic book limbo, only making occasional guest appearances in larger Bat-stories like the two Eternal series, and even then she barely did anything. But then she got tied closer to the Bat-family in James Tynion IV’s mostly good Detective Comics run, and they decided to launch another Batwoman ongoing under up-and-coming writer Marguerite Bennett (AnimosityBombshells). Since a lot of people probably aren’t familiar with Batwoman’s history — since she was barely affected by the 2011 reboot — this Rebirth one-shot could have been used to catch new readers up on her backstory, while also setting up new stories. It only does the latter well. Continue reading “Batwoman: Rebirth #1 Review”