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Transformers 14 review – Early Risers (Ruckley, Malkova, McGuire-Smith, Lafuente, Burcham, Perez, Long, IDW Publishing)

Brian Ruckley (Author) Anna Malkova (Artist) Beth McGuire-Smith (Artist) Joana Lafuente (Colorist) Josh Burcham (Cover Artist, Colorist) Josh Perez (Cover Artist) Letterer Tom B. Long

Thanks to IDW Publishing for the review copy!

Issue 14, part two of “The Change in Your Nature” wisely picks up my favorite storyline from the previous issue, Springer and Sideswipe’s siege of Ruckus and his crew of Risers. Many other bots join in, and each new character’s place in the comic’s universe is effectively conveyed. This continues to be the most action packed, and in my opinion, enjoyable storyline and was nice to see it connect with the Bumblebee/Elita 1 plot from last issue.  In my last review, I wrote that I was particularly interested in what happens next to Bumblebee, and not because he’s my favorite character…I actually think he is overdone.  This issue granted my request and upped the ante. 

The art in this issue was particularly strong, with clear character designs and vibrant colors.  Old favorite characters were easy to spot while even the lesser bots were given attention.  This series takes place before the Autobots and Decepticons were at war. I appreciate how the writers play with this concept by putting characters in positions other than the ones we know them from (like Bumblebee in Megatron’s guard).  With that said, it always find it funny when a character with a name like “Road Rage” is anything but a bad guy.  To be fair, the writers aren’t hiding the fact that some of these characters will become the Decepticons we love to hate, so it isn’t like they are ruining a surprise.

Even though I jumped on at the beginning of the current arc, I continue to wish a little more text was put in the ‘story so far’ page to help new readers. That quibble aside, this issue did a much better job of laying out the factions and providing some context for what is going on.  Overall, this issue was stronger than Issue 13 and drives the story forward. While this series is pretty dense in terms of the mythology it has created, this issue is a decent starting point if you are unable to read the first part of the arc. Despite the relative difficulty onboarding into this series, I am keenly interested in reading what happens next.

Transformers # 14 is now available.

Check back tomorrow for the review of the next issue in this story arc, Transformers #15.

Have you read the issue? What are your thoughts? Feel free to chat with me on Twitter or leave a comment below!Paragraph

Darren Shulman
Darren Shulman
Darren is a professional lawyer and amateur movie/comic/TV reviewer who is lucky enough to have found a wife who is into the same geeky things he is. Darren has been making the trip from Ohio to San Diego Comic-Con since 2009. Other interests include, in no particular order: monkeys, LEGO, dinosaurs, and playing basketball poorly.

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