Saturday, October 07, 2006

Comic Review...

Transformers Timelines
Dawn of Futures Past

Writer: Forest Lee and Peter Sinclair
Artist: Dan Khanna, Alex Milne and Marcelo Matere

Synopsis: Tigatron and another Maximal pursue some Predacons who are after the Golden Disk--an relic of great importance of Maximal High Command. Tigatron's partner is injured, leaving him alone to pursue their enemies. Elsewhere, Megatron holds the disk and plans to use it for his grand designs. Dinobot wants to stay and fight but Megatron tells him his plan is more important. They leave. Elsewhere, a mysterious Predacon tells Laserbeak and Buzzsaw to make certain Megatron accomplishes his ultimate goal but to remain hidden at all cost. Megatron and co. get on their new ship, the Darksyde, leaving Tigatron to find a nearby vessel and commandeer it. Fortunately its pilot, Airrazor, is okay with a fight and happy to help. The Maximals order the Axalon and its crew to pursue the Darksyde as well and they do, despite Optimus' concerns over their cargo (i.e. Protoform X). A big space battle ensues, with Lasorbeak/Buzzsaw almost destroying the Axalon before Tigatron/Airrazor come along and stop them. As Airrazor/Tigatron's ship is about to destroy itself from the battle damage, Rhinox uses some kind of remote spark transfer thingy to beam their sparks into two blank protoforms. The Axalon then gives chase to the Darksyde and both jump into a transwarp portal. Epilogue: some time later, mysterious figures muse over the ultimate fate of the Golden Disk, Megatron and the others fates. It is revealed these are in fact the Predacons of the G1 era! Divebomb tells Razorclaw now that he has returned, it is time he lead the Predacons to ultimate victory over the Maximals!

Comments: I usually hate Forest Lee's mini-comics in the TF club newsletter. Imagine my surprise when this story came out readable and even decent. I'm not sure if this is because of Sinclair's involvement, much editing or just the fact that with enough space even Lee can do something different storywise. I give them credit for not referring to most of the famous BW toys pre-show names, thus getting around the sticky issue of what they may have been (or having to go through legal and finding usable names). Obviously, Rattrap's pre-show name started with an "R" as this is what Optimus starts to say before he's conveniently interrupted (and the first place I really noticed the absence of proper names). The characters all sounded correct--like I would imagine the show characters speaking (something far too few writers pay attention to in the comics). I do wonder about Megatron's battle armor. I know it was to help make symmetry between what we see in Beast Wars, part one and this toy form but I really think a bunch of robots wearing battle armor is redundant when they can just be built with weapons inside them. One final comment on the writing: too many instances of long, rambling sentences with no commas in them that come across feeling like info dumps instead of dialogue.
As to the art... well, its okay. I noticed Rattrap's head design changes twice throughout the issue--from the terrible looking toy head (part of the BC set) to the more familiar BW show head back to the toy head again (look how many people drew this issue, though, and such mistakes are inevitable). A few frames suffered from being unintelligible in terms of what the hell was happening (common to fan comics and, it seems, Botcon comics). The art generally doesn't stand up to IDW's wonderful artwork.
I loved the appearance of the Predacons at the end of the comic and hope that this is not the start of some new and long storyline but just a throw away thing. (Incidentally, there were fan made BW Predacons at the convention for the story--I got pics!)
A decent effort, it does it's job as convention promotional item...

Mildly recommended.

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