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Thread: TF: Devastation #6!!! (possible spoilers)

  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by bassbot
    also, i got 2 extra copies from parra phantom zone, sorry for anyone else going there.
    wha--?! A bunch of us went in there during last Sunday's swap meet and I picked up my standing order and I asked them if they had any spare copies (because i_amtrunks was interested in buying one) and she told me that they only had what was on the shelf, and we didn't see any... are we blind like hawk??

  2. #12
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    weeeeeaaaeeeell.
    I went down there thursday arvo, I was keen as, so made sure the shipment came in.
    They only had two on the shelf and I nabbed em. Sorry Gok!!!

    They probably meant that whatever was on the shelf was all they had, would've been easier if they looked or checked and said, "sorry, we have none".
    Twit and insta @lukeabarnett

  3. #13
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    I'm cool - I've had a TF standing order at Phantom Zone since G1! But I was looking for another one for i_amtrunks so you might wanna PM him and see if he still wants one or not.

  4. #14
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    oh. i didn't by extra just for me to keep. the others i bought for a friend, and one for my dad and sis.
    i just got the roche incentive cover from kings in the mail yesterday, yay
    Twit and insta @lukeabarnett

  5. #15
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    After a tiring week, your resident reviewer finally got around to the final issue of Devastation. Was he devastated or what was he overwhelmed? Let's find out...

    Transformers Devastation #6 Review

    By Simon Furman and EJ Su.

    Covers
    Once again we're provided w/ two covers. One from the fan favourite Nick Roche and the other from present series artist E.J. Su. I'm usually inclined to pick up both covers if the artwork justifies it. Here, only 1 cover did.

    E.J. Su's cover features Galvatron. It really shines because there's a sense of Galvatron emerging from the darkness, making his presence aware. There is a sense of fear, a sense of power, a sense of danger. The slight yellow-orange blaze in the left of the cover gives that sense of Galvatron emerging too. It really is atmospheric and dark. It's a great cover for a series entitled Devastation.

    Roche's cover I find to be more functional. It shows Starscream and Megatron at each other's throats. The central problem are the colours. Why dark orange and red? The other glaring problem is why are their guns blazing in random directions off the page when they're supposed to be clashing? If your facing a component u fire ur weapons at them. Not off into the other direction while u run head on towards them. It's rather silly and ultimately a very passable cover.

    My recommendation is clearly biased towards Su's version and I hope I have amply justified my preference.

    Plot
    Once again a few things happening so I'll list them as plot threads.

    - Headmaster sequence featuring Sunstreaker finally bonded and running as predicted straight into Scorponok.
    - Decepticons vs. the Reapers
    - Galvatron emerging to aid the Decepticons
    - Hot Rod's decision of whether to stay on Earth or not
    - Prime's evacuation; showing he's uneasy about leaving Earth to the Decepticons
    - What's going on w/ Nightbeat thread.
    - The Dead Universe subplot

    Art

    EJ Su takes on a far more expressive style this issue than I am accustomed to seeing. The colour is better and the darker choice of colours makes sense given the carnage this final issue is supposed to represent.

    Appearances of Interest
    Optimus Prime, Megatron, Hardhead, Hound, Nightbeat, Scorponok, Starscream, Runabout, Runamuck, Astrotrain, Blitzwing, Skywarp, Thundercracker, Sunstreaker, Galvatron (and two other notables that I'd rather not spoil), Sixshot, Hot Rod

    Issue Review
    A lot seems to happen this issue but compared to previous issues it is managed very well. Allow me to elaborate.

    Most of the plot threads above while distinct are actually all interwoven quite nicely. They are a series of interconnecting, organic growing threads that weave together. That way, the story is building on itself. I will give one example b/c I really don't want to spoiler things for those who have not read it. Take for instance the Hardhead coming down to inform Hot Rod that they're to evacuate. This ties the evacuation thread and the Hot Rod/Wheeljack nicely. One builds on another, allowing us to see the characters shine as they make decisions in the context of the larger IDW universe where the stakes are being raised.

    This is exactly what the previous issues have been missing. The plot threads have been too disparate. When you read this, there is a sense of the story coming together. It is, to use an adage, too little, too late. These are things that should happen in the 3rd or 4th act of a story. By the time we've reached issue #6, the final issue, we finally come to terms with the story but we have to beg the question: where is the payoff?

    And that's the tricky part. Furman has to give the next series some momentum and that's what he saves the plot threads for. He doesn't tie them together earlier b/c doing so would mean he'd have to give another payoff or leave other questions hanging in the 6th issue. So he's in effect held back the story in my humble estimation. And that has hurt the story, making the pace of this story fast and furious; knocking you off your socks.

    It does leave u wondering though, why did we waste so much time. This though would be unfair to say is Furman's problem. It is endemic across the comic industry and very few writers strike that balance between plot progression and writing for the trade.

    There are some great character moments too:
    - The Megatron and Starscream exchanges are absolutely priceless. This is the way the r/ship between the two should always have been There is an undeniable tension yet respect between the two. A silent acknowledgement of the importance of the other.
    - Hot Rod. The character really shines. That’s all I’ll say. He’s been cool so far with his dash and flare but we see the heart of the character.
    - Hardhead: He too shines. It’s not often the G1 Headmasters get much love but Hardhead does here.

    Then there are some contentious issues with the portrayal of Runabout & Runamuck. Some may feel disappointed that they’re the token Waspinator of the series. Some may feel that they deserve more development and layering. Some may say that Furman’s not given the characters any thought.

    I disagree. For every bit of seriousness we need a counterbalance to it. I think what’s done here provided the middle ground of it. The choice that’s been made is a conscious one. And I couldn’t think of two better characters to use. Runabout and Runamuck aren’t hard nuts, they’re immature troublemakers. I think that gives the depth to the Decepticon ranks. There are just some characters who are, for lack of a more accurate term, bogans. Runabout and Runamuck fit that bill.

    As for the battle itself. It was hectic. It was disappointing. It was more of a sigh of relief when it was finally over. These guys were a token threat and they’re treated exactly like that. What you do appreciate as a reader though is the way Megatron leads his troops and the moments he shares with Starscream.

    There is also the matter of the way Galvatron intervenes. He enters the fray and changes the balance but at no time is he spotted on the battlefield. I find that hard to believe. It really did jar the story for me.

    I do have a quibble with the Ironhide subplot. When did they find him? Hot Rod talks about it as if they can easily beam Wheeljack and Ironhide? My impression from issue #5 was that were still yet to find him – let alone be ready to be beamed off. Very jarring.

    The other focal point of disappointment I have is the implicit dependency on the knowledge of the wider IDW G1 Universe. Hot Rod’s decision, Galvatron’s motivations, Nightbeat’s mystery all rest heavily on their own spotlights in order to operate as effective moments in the story. If don’t recall those, you’ll not appreciate those moment’s to the fullest. Consider Hot Rod’s decision for a moment. It is heavily based on what happened in his Spotlight but you won’t get that here. And that hurts the story.

    It reduces its accessibility. It leaves the reader floundering. It even leaves behind readers who haven’t read those issues since they were released over a year ago. To rest on something that happened so long ago that was part of a spotlight book rather than the mainline really hurts the appreciation of the story. This ultimately lowers the payoff a reader may feel.

    Conversely though those who have been following it closely like myself will undoubtedly feel an affinity for what is happening, warmly embracing the moments. So yes there is an advantage but I fear, even for myself as a devoted reader, it still jars me as I have to think back and that pulls me out of the story and hence the engagement I feel.

    Of the tie-ins to the other spotlights, the only one that you did not need to have read was the Ultra Magnus one. The extra knowledge connects the IDW Universe as a whole but at the same time no knowledge of the spotlight doesn’t change the level of enjoyment you as a reader feel.

    Finally, we come to the same issue I keep asking after each issue: is there a sense of devastation? A sense of utter and absolute destruction? Again, it’s unfortunately to report that the enemy is defeated but it feels too routine. There isn’t a massive sense of devastation of the battlefield or of the status quo. Rather, it seems like circumstance is forcing the Autobots off the planet and hence changing the status quo – not because of some sort of Devastation. In fact, Devastation hardly features at all.

    There is nothing wrong with the dialogue, the plots and characters. The problem is that its structure is not sound and its pacing is poor handled.

    Extras
    Bassbot’s spotlight. It was a nice piece and a pity that it couldn’t have been placed in more relevant earlier chapter. But I guess that’s the nature of these Mosiacs. The art really works well too. My only complaint is the passage of time between the panel that Sunstreaker leaves to the panel where he returns. The transition is a bit jarring.

    Single Issues or TPB?
    This is one of those issues where the cover is invaluable. For those of you who don't read comics, many years ago before the internet when I was a kid, the dissemination of information was not as fluid as it is today. As such I had no solicitations as points of reference to what to expect as i rocked up to my newsagency looking for the next issue.

    This issue brought that magic back. It was WTF moment when I saw Galvatron on the cover of #6. "Galvatron? Oh, yeah, him! Damn how does he fit into all of this?" As I read through the issue, there was that sense of anticipation and eagerness stirred by my initial shock and surprise.

    It really makes buying the issue worth it. It's the part of the experience you won't get by simply reading the trade. Congratulations for Furman and the IDW crew for keeping a lid on this until it was released. It makes ordering which cover you want a bit harder but it enhances the reading experience that makes it rewarding to the fan who waits month in, month out.

    So there you have it. A reason to read the single issues.

    Overall
    7/10 An improved effort. Now comes the frustrating wait between series. By all accounts all we have to do is wait till June. That though seems very distant. But on the merits of this issue, Furman is doing a better job of giving us some sort of payoff whilst setting up the next series. It’s not perfect but it goes a long way to redeeming the disappointing storytelling of the previous few issues.

    Materially, however, the series as a whole is below par. Once you reach this issue, a lot happens to attempt to valiantly save it. While appreciated, it is however too late. The premise was this was a story of destruction and devastation. The story failed to deliver. It had its moments but as a constructed six-issue arc, it leaves one wondering what the true purpose of this series was. Perhaps it would have more aptly been named "Intensification" for that was what this series was. A raising of the stakes with the story taking twists and turns that surprise us. It hardly though lived up to be a tale of devastation. And therein, is it's failure.

  6. #16
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    The Battlechargers have always been comic relief characters from way back in G1 - they were the Decepticons' answer to Beavis and Butthead.


    "Heheheheh... he said do."
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  7. #17
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    this willl be the final issue for the year?

    i cant remember how long escalation and the other went on for, because the pace of this story is so slooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooow

  8. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by roller View Post
    this willl be the final issue for the year?

    i cant remember how long escalation and the other went on for, because the pace of this story is so slooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooow
    There's the continuation of this series in the Revelation mini which goes for 4 issues. That by all accounts begins in June with a Cyclonus chapter. It's supposed to bring to a conclusion the Dead Universe series. More of that in the spoiler thread.

  9. #19
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    Originally Posted by Goktimus
    The Battlechargers have always been comic relief characters from way back in G1 - they were the Decepticons' answer to Beavis and Butthead.
    Yeah which made thier subsequent demise ho hum. In the end the Reapers were no real threat If all they can do is kill the TF equivelant of redshirts.

  10. #20
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    Finally got to read it.

    Overall it was not as good as I was hoping.

    Battlechargers deaths were kinda hard to make out, i'd have preferred those panels to be larger than have that stupid whole page spread for the "big reveal" of Scorpy's head. I did like that the other Decepticons really didnt care that the Battlechargers bit the bullet, "acceptable losses" indeed.

    Galvatron's undead cloud was amusing and all, but what happened to the death bringer that was consumed by it, did he die at the end, or will he live on forever?

    Harhead and Hotrod's 2 pages were good, strong writing, I wish that Furman had have spent less time on the Ironhide arc, as Hotrod "magically finding him" off-screen was a kick in the ribs. It would have been far better to have Wheeljack and Hotrod beam down in-front of the yard, break in, find Ironhide and get assailed all within an issue or two, not spread it out over 5.

    Was not impressed at all with all the holes in the Sunstreaker/Scorponok pages, they really felt wasted to me.

    Art was fairly good, but all the red wash in the Decepticon battle was overkill, and Su's drawing of Hunter was very off-putting, it was almost like he was trying to imitate Roche's style.

    All in all it felt rushed and yet empty at the same time, hopefully the upcoming 4 spotlights will tie everything in nice and tight, I expect Spotlight Hardhead to focus almost as much on Nightbeat, since that will most certainly be an interesting side-quest.

    Hunting for PotP Sludge and Snarl. If any are still out in the wild or you don?t want yours anymore, let me know! Don?t care about the cards and will pay the postage costs!

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