Writer: John Barber
Art: Andrew Griffith
Colours: Josh Perez
Letters: Tom B Long
This is a strangely paced issue but the last few pages drop a massive reveal directly into our laps making this issue of Transformers one of the best so far.
Blackrock continues to try and force Spike into working out who or what he is whilst the assembled Autobots do a lot of complaining and pacing. The real meat of this story is actually Doc and his adventures through a world that we are already familiar with but from his point of view. He looks at the world in a very different way and is methodical in his function, even to a fault. He understands everyone around him and can communicate with Dogs and despite not having an outwardly emotional experience he does form attachments, assign importance to those around him so perhaps he is not as drone like as we all thought.
When I first started reading the issue I felt like it was designed as filler but very quickly as Doc starts his adventure you realise Barber has taken the chance to yes, slow down the story but also flesh out one of the most unique characters in the Transformers series. Doc may not be a huge transforming robot but he is smart, quick and reliable and I enjoyed the time we spent gazing out of his eyes.
The revelation in the final panels really caught me off guard, I feel like I always knew the answer but it wasn’t until now that it all came together.
Andrew Griffith’s art this issue is of its usual high standard which is a good thing given how much of the issue is dedicated to Doc and his mission. His simple face and body movements convey so much of his character and Thundercracker’s Dog Buster is extremely funny to watch. The action this issue is mostly of a slapstick nature and a lot of the visual humour comes from both Buster and Doc as they muddle around.
Perez intermingles his colours with the events creating a unique look for Doc in a world that is full of hazards for him. Watching Docs little neon face glow in some of the darker locations just makes the issue feel more real and that the lighting there is effecting the world.
I was surprised to find myself enjoy this issue way more than I thought I would, from the very start Barber slams on the breaks to the narrative we have followed for months but he takes them right back off again for the final few panels. The art this issue supported the unusual direction well and we once again see the benefit of a team that really get the writers attention. Although only one big thing happens this issue it is big enough that it will have repercussions and a huge impact in the world of the Transformers.