Friday, October 18, 2013


Writer: Simon Furman | Penciler: Andrew Wildman | Inker: Stephen Baskerville
Colorist: John-Paul Bove | Letterer: Chris Mowry | Editor: John Barber
Editor-in-Chief: Chris Ryall

The Plot: On Earth, Springer, Whirl, and Sandstorm fly into Megatron's trap to rescue Kup, while the rest of the Wreckers team up with the human resistance to infiltrate the still-crashed Ark. As the second group battles the Ark's robot guardians, the first team falls to Megatron's zombie forces, and Megatron himself prepares to execute Springer.

Meanwhile, ever since Optimus Prime left for Earth, Hot Rod has been having visions of himself alone on a barren Cybertron, defending it from some unknown foe. He is unable to give these premonitions much thought, however, as Blurr arrives to inform him that someone (Soundwave, unbeknownst to the Autobots) has invaded the Hall of Silence, where the Autobots keep Thunderwing's remains.

And back on Earth, Optimus Prime's group arrives just as Megatron is about to kill Springer. While Prime and Megatron have a stand-off, zombie Starscream manages to choke out two words to his ailing prisoner, Kup: "Kill Ratchet."

G1 Continuity: The Ark's on board computer is referred to as "Auntie" for the second issue in a row. This name was coined by writers Bill Mantlo and Ralph Macchio in Marvel's TRANSFORMERS #1, but I don't believe it was ever used again past that issue, at least in the U.S. run. But regardless of the continuity, it'll always be Teletraan-1 to me.

Body Count: Whirl and Sandstorm are shot down, but their fate is unclear. Otherwise, no one dies this issue -- but I won't be surprised if the next chapter has more than enough carnage to make up for that.

My Thoughts: As with last issue, I don't really feel like this installment accomplishes all that much. Issues 3 and 4 could have been combined into one, cutting a great deal of extraneous fluff, and read just fine. I hate to toss out the word "decompression", but it's beginning to look as if Furman has adopted that practice. I suppose future issues will tell for certain.

The very first and very last page are both narrated by Starscream's internal monologue; a nice touch. Megatron previously revealed that he allowed his traitorous ex-lieutenant to retain his consciousness even as a zombie slave, which has Starscream rightly angry -- it takes all his concentration to give Kup the key to defeating Megatron, who is still apparently mentally linked with Ratchet, meaning that Ratchet's death should finish Megatron as well. Ratchet is a favorite character of mine, so I won't look forward to his death, but at this point Megatron has become so sadistic that if it takes the removal of a favorite to get rid of him, I'll live with it. This isn't a Megatron you love to hate -- he's just a Megatron you hate, period.

Variant "retro" cover by Guido Guidi
A couple other notes: One, I've never liked the way Furman writes Blurr's dialogue. All the words are jumbled together, and I get that this is to indicate the rapid fire speech patterns of Blurr's voice, but it results in the opposite effect -- you spend so long deciphering the words that you end up reading the balloon slower.

And by the way, while I'm talking about that scene -- apparently the samurai-looking robot in the Hall of Silence is Thunderwing. I forgot he was a Pretender, so what Wildman drew last issue was his inner robot, not the outer shell with which I'm more familiar. One mystery solved, at least.

Finally, I was happy to see Optimus Prime surrounded by some familiar faces on Earth. In the only panel depicting his arrival, he is flanked by Prowl and Hound, in addition to Ultra Magnus and Cosmos. The 1984 'bots have arrived! Now let's just hope Furman doesn't turn them into cannon fodder, as he is wont to do.

Final Opinion: We're moving along at a nice clip, but as noted, this issue could have been combined with the last and not much would be missing. In any event, I'm excited for the throw-down between Prime and Megatron next issue.

Available as part of TRANSFORMERS: REGENERATION ONE, vol. 1 from

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