Writer: Andy Schmidt (based off everything IDW's done up to this point)
Summary: In short, this is a comic length summary of the IDW universe from day one to day, er, right now. :) It covers the spotlights, the Furman stuff, Megatron Origins, All Hail Megatron, etc. At the end of the comic, we get a reading order/time line, ads for the TPBs and a personal message from Andy inviting us all to live the dream and buy the new ongoing series.
Comments: I understand the logic behind this comic. With the ongoing comic, it made a perfect opportunity to revisit what has gone before and--cha-cha-ching! Cash in! I had originally planned to skip this but a curious thing happened last week when it came out. I read one review, then another and still another dissing it. Walky even did a comic strip about it:
So, I think for the first time ever, I went to the comic shop to seek out a comic that's been dissed as being bad to see how bad it really was. Well, the descriptions online are a bit exaggerated. It's not like Schmidt really confuses Thunderwing for Bludgeon but he does make some odd choices in his narrative. His recount tells all about Ultra Magnus and even mentions Wheelie's spotlight, even though both are ultimately irrelevant to the later story (but neglects to mention Kup's dilemma, which is at least peripherally related). We also get some odd time-line choices--like how Thunderwing was mysteriously reactivated (when we know Bludgeon did it) and then mentions Bludgeon afterward. If this were a recount from the Autobots' perspective that would make sense but there's no indication given here that it's from anyone's "side". Scorponok creates Headmasters on Earth then comes to Earth after that (if one is unfamiliar with the actual stories, that is the impression you'd get). Also, Skywatch created the Headmasters (even though it was actually The Machination. Apparently either Schmidt didn't re-read those old issues or he just figured all the human groups in Furman's stories were one and the same--when they really weren't). There's also a lot of "it is said that this happened" and "it is believed that" type of thing in this issue when stuff could either be nailed down or ignored. Megatron Origin did happen in the IDWverse--there's no maybe or if about it. Also, as Walky pointed out, all the current characters were there when the Great War started and Optimus Prime became leader. If he didn't want to tell the story because of possible future conflicts, why not have written in a way so as to avoid mentioning those points? I mean, duh! In closing, I'm surprised Andy Schmidt gets to write or edit IDW stuff at all. He doesn't seem to care about those important details that make or break a story (see the non-existent editing on All Hail Megatron) and even his prior attempts at doing stories in IDW's TF-verse have been pretty mediocre attempts to set-up future events rather then tell a good story.
Oh yeah, I like the cover for the most part. Spike on the cover reminds me of Wil Wheaton (aka Wesley Crusher) for some reason.
Final Verdict: Pass.