Review: Transformers #3

Transformers #3

High above Cybertron, the planet’s inner moon unfolds to become a gigantic energon harvester, a magnificent show for Bumblebee and his new friend. Meanwhile, Megatron is assembling a new security force, but rumors abound about the new team.

I haven’t been too keen on the first two issues of this new direction for IDW Publishing‘s Transformers series but this third issue things seem to be moving into a more positive direction.

Writer Brian Ruckley has taken the series into more of a crime procedural direction with a bit of politics thrown in the background. The death of a Transformer has lead to questions like who and why with the main thrust o the series focused on that criminal investigation. That ties into Bumblebee who is mentoring a newly forged Transformer Rumble and through that we get to learn about this version of Cybertron.

I called the series “Law & Order: Cybertron” mostly because it focuses too much on that crime approach with a slow plodding investigation. It fails to really find the interesting aspect in the rise of Megatron and is Ascenticons. The fire and intelligence of this aspect of the Transformers history we saw in the previous volume is diluted so far. Instead of Megatron’s focus on philosophy, we get assassination attempts and the formation of a brute squad. It’s all choppy in the execution. A case is never made for Megatron leaving him as the empty revolutionary, the clear bad guy to Orion Pax and the Autobots. We seen the case for Megatron made before and that added layers to what was originally a simple story of good vs. bad. Hopefully Ruckley can pivot a bit in that focus and add some of the political depth.

Angel Hernandez and Cachét Whitman provide the art trading off on pages. The two differing styles are clear and though doesn’t create a huge issue with the story and series it’s more a question as to why? The two styles are very traditional in what we’ve seen and the designs are solid. The issue is one creator has more of an modern animated look and the other a more traditional comic look. The two styles are similar but the difference is there.

The issue, and series, isn’t bad there’s just a bit of depth and maturity that’s missing. The story and series is pretty basic keeping it to a whodunnit story. There’s also a bit of a feeling that some choices are done more for fanservice from the previous volume as opposed to really driving the story (ex. Elita-1’s inclusion in this issue). This issue is an improvement but this is definitely a different direction and vision than what we’ve previously seen.

Story: Brian Ruckley Art: Angel Hernandez, Cachét Whitman
Color: Joana Lafuente Letterer: Tom B. Long
Story: 7.0 Art: 7.5 Overall: 7.0 Recommendation: Read

IDW Publishing provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review