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THE TRANSFORMERS: COMICS, BOOKS AND MANGA

IDW Publishing
(2005-now)
Devil's Due
(2003-2007)
Dreamwave
(2002-2004)
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(2001-now)
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(2001-now)
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CURRENT TRANSFORMERS COMICS FROM IDW PUBLISHING

Transformers: Movie Prequel Target Free Comic
Reviewed by Inflatable Dalek

Issue Review

This is a nice fun little romp that actually has more focus to it than the more meandering comic it ties into. Bumblebee's frustration at trying to piece together a 100 year old mystery is palatable and makes you really feel for the guy.

Andrew Wildman is also on good form here, providing the best work he's done for 21st Century Transformers comics. It's shame he can't reach these standards when working on titles with a wider availability.

Whilst the short length requires the plot to rely on a few two many coincidences to be fully satisfying (such as the oh so convenient lap top and Bumblebee just running into Barricade), but as a free comic it's more than worth the price and passes a few moments in a enjoyable way.

Notes

This issue was given out free in Target (an American store) shops in June of 2007. It fits fairly neatly into the Prequel comic between Bumblebee hacking into the Internet in issue 3 and running into Barricade in issue 4. For those who missed it, you can read it here: http://transformers.target...TransformersComic.pdf

At this stage in the Prequel comic, Bumblebee is only using his radio to convey his thoughts, here we are treated to a inner monologue from him as in the first issue (and as there's no reason he can't do this goes under stylistic choice rather than error).

We learn more details about the Witwicky family here -
Archibald originally came from Springfield Missouri, and died in 1938 (13 years after we last saw him in issue 3). He was survived by a son called Clarence, followed by Herbert, followed by five sons and one daughter, the oldest of which was Ben, who moved to Denver, Colorado. While Bumblebee is checking up on the children in order of age, and after drawing a blank with Ben, heads for Tranquility in issue 4 of the Prequel comic. It's likely Ron is the next oldest child (though that may vary depending on how may of the kids may have moved to Nevada).

Bumblebee at one point passes both a Target truck and a homage to the original Optimus Prime toy. For the Movie Prequel Special comic the former was changed to Trevor Hutchison artwork for All Hail Megatron.

The circles on the cover are taken from the "Autobots eye view" seen in the comic. The cover of the next exclusive Target comic will be a mirror image of this with Starscream and Megatron in the positions of Prime and Bumblebee.

After a couple of covers, this is long serving Transformers artist Andrew Wildman's debut on interior art for IDW.

When originally published this issue contained hidden messages that, when looked at through red Perspex, would reveal secret codes for the Target website. This, along with its Target stable mate was reprinted by IDW under a new title in the one shot Movie Prequel Special, with the strips arranged in chronological order rather than as originally released. The hidden messages were mostly removed, though a few did slip through the cracks.

Goofs

Considering that when we first see him in the film, Captain Witwicky is clearly no spring chicken (actor W. Morgan Shepard would have been 74 during filming), how likely is it he would live another forty years? A 100 plus is exceptional for the time, especially for someone living in an insane asylum.

Isn't it lucky that not only is an estate agent selling the house on the day Bumblebee arrives, that not only do they have details of all prior occupants on their laptop, but that also the computer has information on where the children of one of those occupants now live! That is lucky.

What did Ben Witwicky do to piss off his Dad? As the oldest child wouldn't he have received his Great Grandfathers stuff before Ron?

When Bumblebee runs into Barricade he should be within range of the fake Allspark signal from issue 4 that lured the Decepticons to the same spot, but is strangely unaware of it. Even more strange, despite not being lured in he just happens to wander past a place where there's a dedicated Transformers trap by chance.

 
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