IDW Publishing 2016
Written by John Barber
Illustrated by Andrew Griffith
Coloured by Thomas Deer
Lettered by Gilberto Lazcano
Across the planet, deposits of Ore-13 explode. All eyes point towards Optimus Prime and his Autobots, and Marissa Faireborn is removed as head of the Earth Defense Command. She’s replaced by Joe Colton and his G.I. Joe Team--but Colton is killed, revealing his forces have been infiltrated by shape-changing Dire Wraiths.
We open up with a look at Marissa in the White House with the President as she’s not happy about the state of things, namely that she was replaced by Joe Colton and he’s dead within minutes and his forces compromised. I like the characterisation here because seriously the President doesn’t want to hear it but then all hell literally breaks loose as those secret service members in the room suddenly reveal they are Dire Wraiths.
Marissa having worked with the Cybertronians in the past calls on one of them to help her out. The former Decepticon who fancies himself a screenwriter, Thundercracker. Here’s where things get a little offtrack but are completely within Thundercracker’s character. He’s busy writing his screenplay while doing his work. So there’s humour infused into his scenes that are quite refreshing and show off who he is at his core.
So as Faireborn races around the White House trying to save the President the dialogue between the two is utterly fantastic. These two women are great characters and I have to say Marissa does prove her mettle time and again while waiting for Thundercracker to arrive. It’s entertaining, fun and a very good look at how far the Dire Wraiths have infiltrated Earth’s society to gain positions of power or to those near it. This story really cements how far the Dire Wraith threat is and how far widespread it’s become and hopefully it will also give us a few new members of that Revolutionaries series.
The interiors are great. Andrew’s use of page layouts with angles, perspective and his attention to detail is very well done. While I wish more backgrounds were utilised that’s one of the things I really appreciate more than a blank background. Doesn’t detract from the story any and the way we see Thundercrack, Bob and the rest really do shine. Plus the creativity in getting to show off the Dire Wraiths ability to shapeshift is really well done.
This might actually have been the first Transformers book i’ve actually read. I’ve flipped through the previous team-up books with G.I. Joe but not the whole run. So what John does here is make the Cybertronians more accessible to readers and give them these unique personalities that make us want to see more. If this is what i’ve been missing all this time then shame on me but it’s something to keep an eye on moving forward. Granted i’ll wait for the team book to see more of them in action to make up my mind as well.
IDW has really gone above and beyond what was expected with all these tie-ins and making this one cohesive universe.