|Cover "A" by Andrew Wildman|
Writer: Simon Furman
Artists: Guido Guidi (breakdowns), Stephen Baskerville (finishes)
Summary: THE WAR TO END ALL WARS! Can the Autobots prevail against JHIAXUS’ New Cybertronian Empire? The disastrous invasion ends in dramatic and shocking fashion with twists, shocks and surprises galore, and STARSCREAM right in the thick of things. Dark forces are stirring for the final chapter of the original TRANSFORMERS epic!
Comments: One thing really stood out in my mind about this issue: it felt rushed. Starscream is apparently possessed by the Underbase and it uses him to track down and absorb Jhiaxus. Why? Who knows... Elsewhere, events seem to imply that either Primus has gone evil or the dark Matrix monster from before has taken control of him (which itself was an aspect of him). And is Galvatron now possessed by Unicron?
Also, like all other storylines in this series up to this point, Jhiaxus' empire is abruptly over. We didn't get much of a sense of his personality (beyond preferring order and going to any means to get it). In the space of three issues, his empire attacked, was retaliated against, got the upper hand and is abruptly stopped by Shockwave and Starscream (with some help from the Wreckers).
I blame IDW's "write for the trade" style for this. In the old Marvel series, stuff could percolate for ages in the background. While this series has had some of that, it hasn't had enough. I wish we could've gotten an issue from Jhiaxus' stand point. Discussing his imperative to create his empire and why he chose the whole "Hub" style for it. At best, we get snippets of this but not a true reason in the story that makes sense. Furman only had twenty issues and he doesn't really explain it beyond "genetic imperative" to create order.
On a related note, we don't get much fallout from the other storylines either. Megatron is dead; his zombies are destroyed. Bludgeon's ship is destroyed and his play for power is done. Scorponok is apparently killed and we get barely a mention of the after effects. It all feels rushed to me and it could've been integrated much better overall. Instead of just "five issues and done", I would've preferred more story lines bleeding over and into each other, then wrap it all up at the end of the series. The way it's been done, it makes the overall story feel a bit, well, hollow.
I still look forward to seeing the final issue next month and seeing exactly what Furman is going to do to end it all off. I just wish more planning had been put into the overall arc of this series.
|Retailer Incentive Cover by Geoff Senior|
|Cover "B" by Guido Guidi|