7.08.2013

My Journey Into The World of Transformers Comics

For many many months, my friends on this show have been telling me (gently, because who am I to listen to anyone, right?) to check out some of IDW's Transformers comics. The first series they suggested was "Last Stand of the Wreckers" which I gave a preliminary read last year. Without enough context, I didn't get far in my first attempt. I could tell the book was good, however, I wasn't "in the mood" for a good book, apparently.

Flash-forward to last weekend. A hot, miserable string of days forced me to stay indoors. I got a little stir crazy, I felt the need to distract myself with something new. Bring forth the comics! This time, I asked some of you on Twitter to steer me in the right direction. All of you bastages agreed on one single title- "More Than Meets The Eye" ("MTMTE"). When the heck do you guys agree on anything unanimously?

So, into the world of James Roberts' loving treatment of the Transformers I went, and I'm completely going to re-read all of these issues again and again. My single biggest reaction to MTMTE was an absence of something I've run into with past TF books- that it wasn't trying too hard.  The book breezily switches between comedy, politics, distinct character work, forbidden romance and terror. I never doubted Transformers could be this great, I just never actually saw anyone pull it off!  I feel like this is Francis Ford Coppola's "Transformers" taking place- operatic but extremely intimate. I kiss your pinky ring, James Roberts! I kiss it like Rewind kisses Chromedome in his dreams!

After plowing through MTMTE, I went back to "Last Stand of the Wreckers" and this time I had no problems getting through the 5 issue mini-series. In fact, to anyone who hasn't read any of these books, I recommend starting with MTMTE and then go back to read "Last Stand"- Roberts plays a lot with flashbacks in MTMTE anyway, and the political backstory of Cybertron is fully fleshed out in MTMTE, where it is lightly referenced in "Last Stand"- making MTMTE the better foundation for the backstory in my opinion.

My favorite character from MTMTE? Geez, not an easy call. I love Tailgate and Whirl because they're the most "off" of the group. Cyclonus is fantastic too- the most morally consistent of all the characters, ironically.  I'm sure other characters will take over my top spot as this book develops. When I see James Roberts at TFCon, I'm buying him something alcohol-related.

Grazie, Don Roberts.

10 comments:

  1. Next: If you want an excellent Roberts-penned Prime and Megatron story, check out "Chaos Theory." It sets up a lot of the pre-war flashback stuff. Its issues 22 and 23 of the previous ongoing.

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  2. Welcome to the good stuff of Transformers.

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  3. MTMTE has been what keeps into the brand, and the recent idw figures are TOP!

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  4. Well said! By the time I saw your question on twitter you had already been flooded with the right answer. I'm glad to see you enjoying this awesome Transformers comic series.

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  5. MTMTE is a phenomenal book, and easily one of the best comics on the shelf today. RID isnt to bad either, though it has a very different tone, and is a little slower to get rolling.

    Honestly the worst the IDW transformers stuff gets is 'mediocre.' The whole series is worth a read, and i consider it my Transformers universe canon.

    If u are after a non-Robots book, try marvels Daredevil since Mark Waid took over. Another phenomenal read. If you dont like it by the end of issue 1 I'd be very surprised!

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    1. Thanks- I've read Mark Waid's DD run, a truly great book. I'm also started reading the entire IDW run of Transformers. We're on the same page, sir!

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    2. Well in that case try Ultimate Spider-Man, another excellent book :)

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  6. Congrats Adam! I too have just finished the first 2 TPBs of MTMTE and I am in love! Great fucking writer but if you loved this series then I'd suggest you read "The Death of Optimus Prime". That story directly correlates into MTMTE & RID, essentially showing Prime cough up the Matrix to Bumblebee & Rodimus (Hot Rod, he hates that).

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  7. Congrats. Just stick far away from Regeneration One, unless you like watching Simon Furman do nothing but masturbate for 22 pages every issue.

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  8. People used to describe MTMTE to me, and I used to say, "That sounds like the dumbest fucking idea for a Transformers comic ever. I ain’t reading that!" Then I would kick them in the nuts and rub broken glass in their face.

    Fast forward, a bit, I really wanted something to read, so I picked up the first TPB. I obviously had fairly low expectations. What a stupid premise for a TF comic! But after just the first issue, I was turning pages with mouth agape, thinking, OH MY CHRIST, THIS IS ONE OF THE BEST WRITTEN COMICS EVER! I seriously adore every panel of every issue. Every speech bubble is like a kiss from Jesus. I probably shouldn’t have rubbed glass in those people’s faces.

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