With Transformers: Unicron underway the big question is how the various IDW Publishing Transformer comics will fold in to that event. Optimus is back, and so is Bumblebee, but how? Those questions aren’t answered in that event but in Transformers: Optimus Prime #21 we get a better idea of it all as well as how Shockwave is stopped and what about the Maximals.
Written by John Barber, Transformers: Optimus Prime #21 feels like it wraps some of these up a bit too quickly and the story would have been served better by adding an issue or two more to tell it. The fact the next event has already launched doesn’t help matters and it’s an issue other major comic publishers have run in to.
But, with the issue, Barber packs a lot in to it focusing on the various factions and what Shockwave’s machinations really means. There’s not just his impact on the history, but the belief system of so many. There’s a lot of dots that have been set up for years and this issue, and the arc as a whole, and things feel like they’ve come together.
The art by Kei Zama, Sara Pitre-Durocher, and Livio Ramondelli, color by Josh Burcham, and lettering by Tom B. Long is fantastic as always. The various Transformer comics always look great and this is no exception. There’s some switching in styles for Optimus and Bumblebee and the rest of the comic but it all looks fantastic.
The comic wraps things up but does feel a bit condensed and rushed in some ways. If you’ve been reading the series you’ll be happy, this is not a spot to start for new readers though. Still, for those who have read this series for a long time, it really does feel like a good pay off. The end game is coming and this is a transition for that. Here’s hoping the next big arc goes out with the bang I was expecting for this one.
Story: John Barber Art: Kei Zama, Sara Pitre-Durocher, Livio Ramondelli
Color: Josh Burcham Letters: Tom B. Long
Story: 7.25 Art: 8.5 Overall: 7.45 Recommendation: Read
IDW Publishing provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review