Writer: John Barber
Art: Andrew Griffith
Colours: Josh Burcham
Letters: Tom B Long
The “All hail Optimus” arc begins to come to a close as a defiant Prime Claims Earth for his own by summoning an enormous Titan to end the battle between the splintered factions of Transformers and the perceived war against humanity. Galvatron makes his escape but is perused by an enraged Arcee and that is before this issue even begins.
Barber proves once again that he is a strong finisher, when his chapters draw to a close they leave the world of the Transformers forever changed and this issue signals what feels like a real power shift. As usual Starscream is showing signs of extreme paranoia and stress and is continuing to converse with the dead Autobot Bumblebee. Cyberton is fixated on the legend of the Primes and Optimus himself, well he finally does something we have been wishing him to do quite some time.
All of the threads Barber has been weaving with his battles on many fronts approach all start to connect together bringing with them some revelations that you might not expect. His portrayal of the long tortured Optimus Prime and the gravity of his actions bring a weight to his actions that is palpable as he finally begins to make the hard decisions he has avoided for so long. In a strange way he is almost a parallel right now to Megatron in MTMTE who had a similar revelation whilst fighting off the forces of the DJD on Necroworld. I like to think that this connection was deliberate but it may have just been a happy coincidence.
Griffith is on pencils this month and his work is incredible, Astrotrain’s descent into a planets gravitational field and the battle that occurs following that are impressively detailed though the high octane chase that proceeded it was slick too. A lot of work was put into giving Prime a majestic yet equally sinister appearance this issue and his domineer allows us to feel his exhaustion and pain at the actions he is having to carry out. Weirdly the art seems to change towards the end of the book and loses a lot of its detail which seems likely the result of having spent too much time detailing the book so Intricately. In comparison to his impressively detailed Transformers his humans look a little bland, they dont feature any where near the detail the Cybertronians do but to be fair the book is about the Transformers and not the humans so its not something that will upset many readers.
Burcham’s colours for the majority of this issue are a joy, especially the sequence mentioned above with Astrotrain’s scene. The colours take on a muted hue giving the whole scene an otherworldly feel and the event that unfold are all the more dramatic for it. The colour palette actually reminded me a little of the older comic book series and the schemes used back then but with modern techniques it just pops off the page more than it ever did back then.
This is the final issue in this arc and it certainly goes out with a bang, the uneasy status quo looks set to change over the course of the next few issues and the world of the Transformers looks both a little better and a little worse for it. The series did feel like it was maybe a few issues longer than it should have been but the events in the last half of this book have completely made up for any short comings and leave us with a lot of questions about just what will happen next. It is exciting to see so many lost colonies now featuring so heavily in the book especially with the return of the cast from Beast wars, I await the start of the next issue with bated breath.