CURRENT TRANSFORMERS COMICS FROM IDW PUBLISHING
Transformers #31: Pax Cybertronia
Reviewed by Blackjack
"Everything always changes into something else."
A throwaway issue meant to serve as a final chapter of Mike Costa's reign on the Transformers comic. Well I say good riddance. Costa has turned up a grand total of two good issues over nearly two years, which is poor show. None of Costa's arcs have a satisfying conclusion, and while he's not exactly a bad writer, he's far from being a good one. This issue doesn't really tell us much, it's just a short piece about what it would be like in the future if Ironhide was the last one left amongst a new generation of young Autobots that admire him. Basically it's an attempt to be artistic, but again the execution falls short of the expectation. The only thing artistic about this issue is Casey Coller's gorgeous art, but even then it's not really a necessary read, because of how throwaway this issue is. It's a nice story, but it's been done before by Simon Furman way back in the Marvel days, in less pages with more effect.
To be fair, though, Mike Costa at least bows out with dignity, with quasi-decent final arcs that ties up all his loose ends, which means we're free to enter the third soft reboot IDW has done to the comic... handled by James Roberts and John barber, great writers. For once, the future looks bright.
This issue was written as some sort of a 'last issue' for the Transformers, based on, among others, Peter David's last issue of the Incredible Hulk and an issue of Starman, where in both issues some character was telling stories years after the comic. Originally it was going to be Bumblebee that was to be the veteran, but was changed to Ironhide due to prior history with Alpha Trion.
This takes place in a revived Gorlam Prime in the far-flung future, some fifteen million years later. The war between the Autobots and Decepticons are known as either the Great Wars or the Unification Wars.
The young Autobots have G2 Autobot insignias.
The young Autobots have so many alternate modes that they are surprised that Ironhide only has one. Ironhide, meanwhile, has not transformed in a long time and thinks he couldn't manage transforming any longer, similar to Xaaron from the Marvel comics.
Alpha Trion is able to change when new things start happening, which is probably one of the funky abilities poor old Ironhide doesn't have. Ironhide also carries a cane now.
The young Autobots want to hear the story of the battle of Garrus-9 with the Wreckers, referencing the events of Last Stand of the Wreckers, as well as when the Matrix worked and didn't, which might or might not be the finale to Chaos. Among other stories mentioned are stories about Wheelie,
Among events that are flashed back to include:
-Megatron killing Sentinel Prime in Megatron: Origin
-Optimus Prime being killed by Megatron in Escalation
-Shockwave battling the organic-skinned Dinobots from Spotlight: Shockwave
-Optimus and Megatron battling Thunderwing side-by-side, from the flashbacks in Stormbringer.
-Decepticons destroying New York from All Hail Megatron.
-Ironhide battling the Swarm from Transformers: Ironhide.
-Megatron facing off against the D-Void Deceptigod from the Chaos arc.
There are statues of Bumblebee and what appears to be Cosmos on the town square. Statues of Rodimus and Optimus Prime are in the hall where they held the remembrance night.
The issue title Pax Cybertronia is based on the treaty between the different factions from Beast Wars, which in turn is based on the real-life Pax Romana.
On the Megatron Origin flashback, Megatron has his necklace, although in Megatron: Origin he was not wearing it. Casey Coller admitted into adding it in to make it look cooler.
Why couldn't Alpha Trion share his cream of eternal youth or whatever with Ironhide?