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Denyer 2005-10-19 12:49 AM

Previews here:

Current information: (reviews, links to info)
Non-spoiler solicitations + upcoming release dates

Right, as we're entering a new age of spoilers, I'd like people to be considerate in what they post here and in other places about the IDW comics. We do have {spoiler}{/spoiler} tags—just replace the {} brackets with square ones.

For example...

SPOILER! (select to read)
If you've been living on the moon for the past year, Dreamwave went bankrupt and Pat Lee is a git who didn't pay his staff, but spent plenty on cars.

In particular, the rest of the world will get new issues at least a few days after the US.

If anyone in the UK is having trouble finding issues, I'd recommend OneShallStand.

There's also a thread about what cover choices people are picking here.

Fireflight 2005-10-20 09:53 PM

Neither of the comic shops in Manchester had got any copies in though they had the rest of the weeks releases, does anyone know if this is a regional thing or has there been distribution problems to the u.k.?

Edit: Transmasters UK forum post

An email from Steve Bax mentioned the following:

"The comic had been due for release in the UK today but has now been put back, tentatively, for November 3"

Commander Shockwav 2005-10-23 03:30 AM

Well, I read it last night, and I can say I am pleased with what I'm seeing.

Two good signs.

Firstly, despite my dislike of human-centered TF stories and the scarce appearance of Transformers themselves, I surprisingly enjoyed this one.

Secondly, despite it being a smaller read, it delivered a succinct story that actually accomplished some things, like character development and establishing the tone of IDW's take on the Transformers. Not bad given the limited number of pages in which to do this.

Artwise, E.J. does well in the storytelling department, and though he isn't the best penciler around, he gets the job done.

So overall, story and artwise, I would say we are off to a good start.

DrSpengler 2005-10-23 03:42 AM


Cassettacon 27 2005-10-26 09:54 PM

I just picked it up today.
I loved it. I loved the way they played the disguise factor.
I also like they way they only showed Starscream's eyes.
T-minus two months t'ill the series gets going.

Cliffjumper 2005-10-31 11:40 AM

Passable. It did what a preview should do really - it's given a brief intro to the EDGY chick and the weird bloke, so hopefully the same thing won't clog up the first issue when it arrives. It basically covered as much ground as the first half of DW Vol. 1, getting the poor stuff out of the way [like I say, hopefully] so we can have a proper story next month.

The art was quite nice, but then Pat could do passable humans. Verity, well, I'm not as in love with her as Furman clearly is, but she should get better when we're not having the fact she's a kid involved with Transformers who isn't a clean-cut little swot crammed down our throat.

Reasons to be hopeful, but not something I expect I'll re-read that often once something with substance arrives.

Oh, and is that speech-bubble meant to be half-faded?

Wildrider 2005-10-31 12:59 PM

Hmm mine arrived today care of Steve Bax, not alot happens I agree, but it's only a preview.

A few things grated...

Hunter O'Nion? :wtf:

The editor asking us to watch out for cameos, what? You mean the characters essential to the story highlighted on the inside cover as and when they appear in each issue.

Where's Wally for idiots?

SPOILER! (select to read)
I invented a rumour that the ipod is in fact steeljaw 'in disguise'!

Still it's hard to be critical of a preview that centres around a bus, Punky Brewster and Starscream's chin.

Halfshell 2005-11-02 12:42 PM


Originally posted by Cliffjumper
Oh, and is that speech-bubble meant to be half-faded?
Glad to know it's not a muck up on my copy...

Maybe it was quiet talking? Drowned out talking? We really shouldn't have to be asking the question, should we?

Anybody else wonder why Shaggy was driving the Mystery Machine? Surely that's the job of a non-stoner...

Cliffjumper 2005-11-02 02:31 PM

I thought maybe a drowned out effect... if it is, it's pretty ****ty and indistinct. It also just doesn't feel quite right...

chiasaur11 2005-11-02 04:00 PM

Well, Blitzwing made a cameo on the printout. And that's it.

Denyer 2005-11-02 05:35 PM


Originally posted by Brendocon
Maybe it was quiet talking? Drowned out talking? We really shouldn't have to be asking the question, should we?
I'm rather amazed anyone is. Thundercracker, low flying, sonic boom?

Repticon 2005-11-13 03:15 PM

I think the art sucked. The pencils, or at least the inking are awful, and the collors look goddang dirty. It is to early to say anytihing about the story, but I like the angle of the transformers disguised and "infiltrated" on earth without anyone knowing. The human characters were kinda likeable, but the art!, they need to be drawn better.

Denyer 2005-11-16 11:27 PM


Originally posted by Repticon
The pencils, or at least the inking are awful
Try telling people what you'd like to see, rather than going for puerile suxxors comments. Although be warned that if it includes "manga lite" you may not get a great deal of sympathy in these parts.

Anyway, got copy finally, and wrote this about a fortnight ago from a perspective on the outskirts of fandom...

The Transformers #0 - Prelude to Infiltration

Between 2001 and 2004, new Transformers comics were published by a Canadian company called Dreamwave. In 2005, they went into receivership in acrimonious circumstances having failed to pay artists and writers. One of the companies that subsequently bid for the license from Hasbro was IDW Publishing.

IDW have actually expressed an interest in publishing conclusions to storylines that were left hanging by the situation, out of consideration for fans. For their own new titles, though, they're going back to basics.

Ultimate Transformers, if you will.

For those unfamiliar with Marvel Comics' publishing lines, here's a quick explanation of that analogy: an 'Ultimate' title offers an updated storyline set in the present, without the baggage of old continuities and without an intention to simply retell bits of old stories.

It's about being selective. If you strip Transformers down into concepts, you have two factions of sentient robots from another planet. You have them warring for resources and survival. You have them arrive on Earth at some point, and disguise themselves as everyday machines and vehicles. That last concept didn't last very long into the Eighties and Nineties, as Hasbro shifted towards Transformers with more futuristic alt-modes...

Disguise and infiltration are what IDW and Simon Furman are taking us back to for the beginning of their new series. I've thoroughly enjoyed this preview #0 issue, and if you don't want to read on, grab a copy and see for yourself. Should cost you a quid or less. What you get for the price of admission is a 16 page strip, plus another 6 pages of introductions/interviews for the creators to fill you in a bit on what they have planned, and a back-page ad that's making me consider getting another copy to put on the wall.

Story Review

Our main characters are Verity Carlo and Hunter O'Nion (yeah, he isn't all that fond of his name either.) Both are fairly young without being kids, and it's from their perspective that we experience Transformers as alien, mysterious and dangerous. Hunter is a geeky conspiracy nut, driving out into the middle of the desert in hopes of finding confirmation of invading extraterrestrial robots. Verity is a petty thief with wanderlust, filching a portable computer from a salesman on a coach, unaware that someone or something is anxious either to have it in their possession or to keep it from prying eyes.

The story is placed firmly in the here and now: there are references to laptops and coaches having GPS; Transformers we glimpse have appropriate modern vehicle modes (close to the originals, but not anachronistic) and Decepticons seem to employ hardware similar to the short-term memory loss device seen in Men in Black. The fact we get this hint in dialogue rather than a bludgeoningly unsubtle flashback is great, and there are equally unobtrusive cameos right from the first page, in keeping with the disguise theme. Transformers are also shown to employ holographic drivers to avoid suspicion.

The script is peppered with other nice touches; when Verity is hitchhiking and Hunter picks her up, she gives a false name. Their conversation holds shades of meaning that older readers will grasp whilst kids just pass over. (Not sexual. I know my descriptions are vague; I don't want to give too much detail for prospective readers.) Basically, the dialogue is realistic, in ways humans in past series have rarely been, and makes for two likeable characters who aren't Transformers, again an unusual reaction for me to have.

Su's art is strongly grounded in realism, with occasional flourishes of manga in facial features for dramatic effect. It's a far cry from the grandstanding poster art offered by Dreamwave mainstay Pat Lee, and tells the story effectively. Characters don't suffer from the Friends-syndrome of being abnormally attractive, and thought has clearly been given to body language and use of panel arrangement and layering to lead the eye through each page. We do get one two-page splash image, but it's far from gratuitous; instead it creates the effect of a lone Decepticon with real threat and lethal intentions.

Flavour Quotes

Verity: "What are you doing?! If you're-- I knew it was too good to be true! That innocent 'I-wouldn't-know-what-to-do-with-a-girl-if-I-had-one' act..."

Hunter: "Would you believe... giant robots? I run this web site, see. And it supports a theory--widely held--that two or more years ago we were invaded..."


It's a $0.99 issue, with the cheapest it's been spotted at in a UK comics store being 65p. Even at a quid, you're getting very good value, whilst for those who like to collect cover art there are several pics to choose from. The normal retail price for the ongoing series starting with #1 in January will be $2.99, cheaper than IDW's usual $3.99 for books and offset by regular variant covers being offered for collectors and fans of particular artists.

Repticon 2005-11-17 01:53 AM

Sorry, I was just tryin`to be objective in the way I expect human anatomy to be shown (altough I know how hard is to draw humans). I agree with your review of the story

Denyer 2005-11-17 02:33 AM

Cool... now we've got a conversation rather than just statements.

Su does flip between styles when he's drawing facial expressions for different panels. It's not as pronounced as many comics I've read, where characters could be shown as chibi in a frame or two for effect, but it is there.

More towards realism:

More cartoony:

If anything I'd say his handling of anatomy in proportion and wireframe is sharper than most artists' though, especially most that draw 'hero' books.

Pretty sure that Hunter's supposed to be that unprepossessing, too.

I would agree I'd like to see a slightly more varied palette used for the colouring.

optimusskids 2005-11-20 01:47 PM

Looking at those pics above I'm wondering if the green shirt was a subtle nod towards Shaggy out of Scooby-Doo.

Thefallenone 2005-11-29 10:19 AM

the humans look like they'll be more interesting then Spike and Carly every wear in the Original Cartoon seasons:yawn: just gotta wait until orders come in:)

E.J.Su 2005-12-01 08:05 AM


Originally posted by Repticon
Sorry, I was just tryin`to be objective in the way I expect human anatomy to be shown (altough I know how hard is to draw humans). I agree with your review of the story

How exactly do you expect human anatomy to be shown? Can you show some examples? Don't take this as a defensive response, I am really curious.

wreckie 2005-12-01 02:09 PM


Originally posted by E.J.Su
How exactly do you expect human anatomy to be shown? Can you show some examples?
That sounds a bit rude, doesn't it? :laugh:

Denyer 2005-12-01 02:25 PM

Now, now. Let's not get sidetracked with Blackadder II "Beer" quotes.

I'm sure Repticon'll be back around in a bit...

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