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Revenge of the Fallen #4 [UK]: New Tricks
Reviewed by Inflatable Dalek

Issue Review

The character work here remains excellent, the disgruntlement and boredom of the twins is well handled and Sideswipe is appropriately grizzled. It’s also nice to see the series open up with a foreign location; it could be set anywhere but out in the Orkneys affirms NEST’s international status in a nice subtle way.

However, four issues in the plot of Skids and Mudflap having something to say but no one wanting to listen is really being dragged out at this point. It’s a shame as the action is well drawn and makes innovative use of the training room. The storyline just really needs a bit of a kick up the arse to get to the point. That negative balanced against the good results in an average issue, hopefully things can get into gear soon before it becomes as drawn out as the All Hail Megatron issues it reprints.

For the first time the comic visits the British Isles, something they’ve held out on doing for a surprisingly long time. Britain having its own Autobot facilities also ties in nicely with the third most important NEST trooper in the film being English, the UK is clearly high up in the organisation. Special relationship donchaknow.

The base itself, with large automated training room and underwater facilities looks remarkably like the Pitt in the live action G.I. Joe film.

The cover is once again completely different to that show for the Next Issue… box last time. It swaps Sideswipe for Ironhide (who isn’t in the issue but is of course far more recognisable to the young buyer).

The title is probably a nod in the direction of the BBC’s long running old fart cop drama. No doubt Furman sees himself as Dennis Waterman (writing the comic, err… singing the comic. Not the best analogy really). From here onwards the All Hail Megatron reprints get their own title as well. In return for which the “Part…” has been dropped from the lead strip.

The issue as a whole celebrates the 25th anniversary of the arrival of Transformers in the UK, with a special two-page spread overview of the franchise called Quarter Past Megatron (Quarter Past Ten-takill surely?). It’s broadly inaccurate and full of omissions, but it’s supposed to be a rough guide for children rather than the Wiki so I’m leaving it alone.

Does the NEST base really have no CCTV in it whatsoever [In previous continuities Ravage can shield himself from all electronic surveillance, but there’s no indication of that here and it wouldn’t likely work when he’s insensible]? And Sideswipe is remarkably quick to decide the Twin’s knocked him out, which means they would have had to walk out a door in front of him before somehow doubling back behind him without him noticing.

Not really an error: The letters page still offers Starscream’s Star Prize. Within the fiction of Law and Disorder it’s entirely likely that Ironhide and Barricade are giving away Starscream’s stuff. [Do I think that’s the likely intent rather than someone forgetting to change it, or even no one being able to think of a better name? Nope. But every once in a while declare peace and confuse the hell out of your enemies].

They’re reprinting All Hail Megatron.

Fantastic Free Gift!

A flimsy plastic missile launcher. But forget that, you get some free Haribo as well! Kids and grown ups love it so.

Message in a Battle!, cut out Megatron Birthday card;
Double sided poster of this issue’s and an All Hail Megatron cover;
Competitions for leader class toys, the DS game, and Changeling: Dark Moon and Dog Head books;
Ravage profile;
Way Past Cool covers more games including Beatles Rock band (ask your grandparents kids);
Which Transformer Are You?! Quick quiz, I’m Wheelie;
Law and Disorder with more Starscream’s Stars. I’ve only just realised the Revenge of the Fallen letters page is co-hosted by someone not in the film.

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