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inflatable dalek
2007-07-19, 09:03 AM
IMPORTANT NOTE: this thread includes discussion for the UK comics as released and the IDW reprints about a year behind. Expect spoilers.

Information here: http://tfarchive.com/comics/idw/guide.php?s=titan

Interview with Steve White: http://transfans.net/interviews_white.php

* * *

is out now boys and girls. Was I the only one to feel all nostalgic to be buying an actual [I]Transformers comic from Smith's again after all these years? [Oh all right, the Panini Armada comic wasn't all that long ago, but lets draw a veil over that).

To make it clear what this issue has in it:

A new 10 page strip about Optimus Prime written by Furman and drawn by newcomer Geoff Senior.

The first seven pages of issue one of IDW's Transformers: The Official Movie Prequel.

And the wild card: the first six pages of IDW's Beast Wars: The Gathering. Seemingly to help plug the forthcoming Beawst Machines DVD R2 release (which gets the tagline: "Their planet, a new war").

I don't think anyone was expecting them to be reprinting non-Movie stuff so soon, I guess they saw how many copies the American version sold and decided they could stretch out the material. I suppose the more obvious choice of doing the ...ation stuff wasn't picked because of covering similar ground to the Movie related comics (Men in Black ect).

People are more than welcome to discuss any and all of the above in the thread, but in defference to those reading for the first time spoiler tags for anything not yet reprinted please.

inflatable dalek
2007-07-20, 06:42 PM
Having now read it:

The original strip is a good solid begining storywise. Nothing revolutionary to most of us familiar with Furman's work (you can practically tell what Prime's going to think a panel or two ahead), but done well for what it is.

Art wise though it's another story, Senior rocks frankly. And am I mad to think the design of the drone was a Leige Maximo tribute?

As for the rest of the comic, I found the whole "Hey, you've all seen the Movie and it rocks and if you haven't seen it you're a tit" attitude a bit odd considering the film hasn't been released in the UK yet (I was joking to my Mother the other day that the delay in releasing the film over here is due to Paramount doing a deal with the guy in the pub who sells pirate DVD's, this seems to confirm it). As a result all the letters from 7 year olds going on about how they've seen it at the cinema and how great it is seem a tad suspect (though there's nothing as blatently as false as what was in the Panini Armada comic). And which one of you dropped a poor four year old in the middle of your collection to get a photo published?

thacent
2007-07-30, 10:29 PM
Im not a comic fan, just gonna get it for some pics to create a collage and the cool dogtags

Lambda prime
2007-07-31, 07:50 AM
I'm not keen on the idea of paying £2.80 for a comic with a new ten page story with US stuff which is already available through the web and in stores.

thacent
2007-07-31, 09:29 AM
WOOOO a whole €2.80, its nearly €6 here

Housewife2000
2007-08-01, 02:46 PM
It's a really awful magazine to be honest. The non-comic content is just kid friendly nonsense, while the various snippets of US strips jar badly with each other and the home grown stuff. I have nothing against either the Official Prequel strip or the Beast Wars material printed here, but their butchered format shows through glaringly: being cut to 6 or 7 pages ruins the flow and leaves them unfocussed snippets. Furman's slightly pompous dialogue, especially in the prequel, is completely at odds with the short, sharp punch that is his home grown strip. Which brings us to the best bit of the package: the UK strip is tight, simple yet focussed. It's great to see Senior's work again, and he creates a whole new version of Cybertron, both drawing on the modern interpretation and his classic work. Unfortunately, since he's not going to be on every issue, and most of each issue is nonsense, I'm going to very selective about picking up future copies.

inflatable dalek
2007-08-11, 01:46 PM
Titan Transformers #1: Optimus Prime.
A Review by Inflatable Dalek

Note: For the two back up strips this issue reprints IDW material- Pages 1-7 of issue 1 of the Official Prequel Comic, and pages 1-6 of issue 1 of Beast Wars: The Gathering.

Optimus Prime:
Script: Simon Furman.
Art: Geoff Senior.
Colours: Robin Smith.
Letters: Jimmy Bentancourt/Comicraft.
Editor: Steve White.

Synopsis:
On Cybertron a desperate Optimus Prime prepares to launch the Allspark into space in an attempt to stop Megatron getting his hands upon it. As he debates the morality of his decision a Decepticon drone attacks the building. Having traced Prime through the Energy Matrix of his Spark it is now programmed to kill him.

Prime puts up a strong fight, but in the process reveals the Allspark to the drone, resulting in it changing its priorities and going for the cube. Prime makes a suicide run on it, resulting in the drone’s destruction and him being thrown clear of the building. As he recovers he has a vision of the Transformer war reaching a new World of strange fleshy creatures. This makes him question his plan to loose the cube, but it's too late. His assistant has already fired it into space...

Characters Featured: Optimus Prime, Megatron, Arctus.

Notes:

Titan acquired the UK rights to the Transformers licence shortly after the Panini Armada comic folded, but have sat upon them until the Movies release to maximise sales. Editor Steve White had provided art for various issues of the Marvel UK comic and was extremely keen on the chance to run the title. As is the norm with British comics this is effectively an anthology title, with IDW reprints making up the rest of the comic. Beast Wars might seem an odd choice, but the TV show was broadcast in a loop on Saturdays on Channel Five a couple of years ago, the only Transformers series to be broadcast in its entirety on British terrestrial television, so it's likely to be the best known after the original in the UK. The Gathering also has the advantage of being the same length as the Movie Prequel, meaning if sales aren't good enough to sustain it after the Movie hype wears off the title can end there without leaving any stories dangling.

Apart from a few covers for the Armada UK comic this is Geoff Senior's first TF work since A Rage in Heaven 13 years ago. Colourist Robin Smith also worked on the Marvel UK title, so this is something of an old school reunion. At ten pages this is the longest UK originated strip since Time Wars Part 7 back in 1989.

The events here take place towards the end of issue 1 of the IDW prequel comic, or around issue 3 of this title if the page ration stays the same.

The Movie itself doesn't comment on how the Allspark was lost. The idea of Prime firing it into space as seen here (and IDW's output) is likely inspired by The Flames of Boltax! (Marvel US #48), where Prime shoots the Underbase- Cybertrons greatest source of knowledge- into space to stop Megatron getting his mits on it (and it latter arrives on Earth). Here it's actually Prime's assistant, Arctus, who presses the button as Prime is busy at the time.

And to round of the in-jokes, the drone that tries to kill Prime is seemingly based on the Leige Maximo from the Generation 2 comic (which as noted above, was the last interior art Geoff Senior did).

The idea that the Allspark can give visions of the future is taken from issue 2 of the Prequel comic. It seems to show Prime exactly the same vista of Mission City it gives Captain Whitwicky.

Goofs:

Though he turns into the Protoform spaceship thing Prime's robot mode is clearly based on his Earth body. It's like someone provided Geoff Senior with reference photos of two different toys by mistake (and it's nothing like the robot mode we'll see Prime have latter in the Prequel comic).

The fuel container has "FUEL" written in English in large letters (a possible Jose Delbo tribute?).

The intro page encourages readers to go see the new Movie right now even though it wasn't yet released in the UK when this issue was published. Even more oddly, the letters page is full of comments from people that have seen the film at the cinema.

In the advert/feature on the original Movie there are several stills taken from TV episodes rather than the feature film.

Fantastic Free Gift!: Want to be as cool as a soldier without having to do all that nasty killing? Well now you can with amazing Autobot dog tags!

Extras: Also included is a Optimus Prime poster (based on the cover), a run down on who'd win in a fight between Ratchet and Barricade (written by Furman) and two thinly disguised adverts for tie in merchandise and the Metrodome DVD release of the 1986 film.

Review:

Expectations were high. Geoff Senior is generally regarded as the best single Transformers artist of all time, and his self imposed retirement for so long has made fan excitement at his return huge. It would have been very easy to be disappointed- as happened with the return of Andrew Wildman- but he hasn't lost his touch. Despite the goof over Prime's robot mode every page sings with crisp, beautiful art.

As for the story, it's a standard Furman monologue for Prime. But as a intro to Transformers comics to new fans it works well and shows something significant that, surprisingly perhaps, happened off page in the Prequel Comic.

For anyone who's collecting the IDW material there's not enough new stuff here to justify the cover price (hopefully they'll be some Summer Special type titles collecting the original strips together as it goes along), but for anyone who isn't it's well worth getting for Senior's triumphant return alone (and the back up strips are decent as well).

[three out of five]

inflatable dalek
2007-08-21, 05:49 PM
I'd totally forgotten about this till seeing it at work Yesterday...

The second issue containing a Megatron story and the next two bits of the Prequel and Beast Wars is out now.

The Megatron story itself was a bit of a comedown from last issue's Prime despite good work from Transformer's second favourite Irishman on the art chores. Part of the problem is that it's called Megatron but it's really more about Devastator (yup, not Brawl) being dumb when fighting Jazz and Ratchet.

Clogs
2007-08-24, 05:15 PM
But there are free temporary tattoos with this issue! :D

Housewife2000
2007-09-04, 10:56 AM
Agree on the Megatron story - fairly throwaway and basically just a setup for the interlinked stories coming up.

I picked up #3 at the London Film and Comic Con and while the story is interesting, Wildman's Art is a little bland.

Furman himself was kind enough to give me some advice on breaking into comics and was a genuinely really cool guy. Opposite his stall was a guy who worked as a production designer or concept designer on the 2007 movie, and he was really interesting: loads of info on early drafts of the movie and what they're planning for the sequel.

All of which was groovy.

Clogs
2007-09-04, 09:19 PM
Originally posted by Housewife2000
Agree on the Megatron story - fairly throwaway and basically just a setup for the interlinked stories coming up.

I picked up #3 at the London Film and Comic Con and while the story is interesting, Wildman's Art is a little bland.

Furman himself was kind enough to give me some advice on breaking into comics and was a genuinely really cool guy. Opposite his stall was a guy who worked as a production designer or concept designer on the 2007 movie, and he was really interesting: loads of info on early drafts of the movie and what they're planning for the sequel.

All of which was groovy.

And.....? :wall:

Denyer
2007-09-04, 09:46 PM
No complaints about the art, but Furman's onto filler already -- without a lure such as Geoff, it falls flat.

And I think BW was a very poor choice for a drip-feed story (a few of the Spotlights would've worked much better)... actually, I think the drip-feed mentality in general is going to kill the title.

As the movie becomes a distant memory, there's no hook.

Housewife2000
2007-09-05, 09:55 AM
I don’t want to get Concept Guy in trouble, but seeing as he was happy to tell a complete stranger at a convention, I guess it’s no biggie.

Apologies if much of this is already known. Two strands of info – movie 1 and movie 2:

Concept Guy said he saw a cut of Movie 1 that ran to 3 hours. He also saw over 500 drafts of the script. The Mars rover subplot was more integral to the plot, and less throwaway. The flashbacks to Megatron in the Arctic were all at the beginning of the movie as prologue, rather than interspersed through it. Barricade’s death was a longer action sequence: he drives off the highway and onto Prime after the Bonecrusher fight, and they roll into a construction yard where Prime swings a wrecking ball into Barricade, killing him. It won’t make it to the DVD cut since they’re working on the theory that Barricade is going to play a role in the sequel.

As to the sequel, he said they have a series of scenes and ideas rather than a full script, and the design team basically spin their own theories to connect them together, developing characters and set pieces along the way (which is one of the coolest jobs I’ve heard of). He’d seen a design of an Air Craft Carrier Decepticon in robot mode, whose feet were on the Atlantic floor, and head above water. Why the Atlantic? Laurentian Abyss. Concept Guy was also playing with the theory that Starscream went for help from a ‘guy with one eye’ – I’m guessing one hand as well and a thing for purple.


Back on topic:

Titan are in a bit of a trap though – they can’t really do post-2007 Movie stories since the sequel is likely to render any storylines non-canon. Box office failure for the 1986 movie was what allowed Furman write post-movie spin-off tales in the Marvel UK run to his hearts content. The new movie and its success makes anything other than peripheral filler somewhat pointless.

IDW might dabble with movie continuity stories, but their mainline G1 saga is unaffected. One option for Titan might be to set their original stories in a new continuity, but how well that would work, I’m not sure. If Furman’s penning them then there’s nothing stopping him doing an IDW-verse of the Earthforce type stories, although you’d need a fair bit of summary or reprinting to bring new UK readers up to speed.

At the end of the day, if they stick to the movie then I think they’re dead in the water. The stories just can’t go anywhere.

Cliffjumper
2007-09-05, 01:03 PM
I've not read it yet, but I reckon they'd be best off just going for some sort of direction... they'll get a lot of early warning for the second film and be able to at least make a choice as to whether they're going to be able to dovetail their material towards it or not - if done well enough, they can make the choice to not and strike out on their own.

Only thing is, Furman's not the man for that job. His commitment to the UK title dropped massively once he got a job at Marvel USA, and now he's far too tired and jaded to manage it, especially as he and IDW are collaborating to make their 'G1' continuity as complicated as possible. Transformers in general could do with an infusion of new writers - the competition would probably raise Furman's game too if it wasn't a given that he'd be first choice for any TF comic. Only problem with that is that Furman's a greedy ****, and the Titan money probably covers Andy "Ridgely" Wildman's food bills nicely.

inflatable dalek
2007-09-05, 06:17 PM
Originally posted by Denyer


And I think BW was a very poor choice for a drip-feed story (a few of the Spotlights would've worked much better)... actually, I think the drip-feed mentality in general is going to kill the title.

BW is the show most of the kids reading are likely to be more familiar with thanks to the five re-runs though, so from that point of view it makes sense (plus of course, it's the same length as the Movie Prequel, so when they're done they can do what 200AD does once a year and have a big push on a "All new stories start inside" issue). I can't see much point in doing the Spotlights by themselves, and the ...tion arcs cover to much of the same MIB ground really.

Denyer
2007-09-05, 10:57 PM
You reckon it's going to last a year?

inflatable dalek
2007-09-06, 07:09 AM
Originally posted by Denyer
You reckon it's going to last a year?

I reckon they're assuming/hoping it will and that's informing the decisions they've made on picking the reprints.

Any official word on sales yet?

Denyer
2007-09-06, 02:01 PM
Assuming it lives, it'll be interesting to see whether they move onto IDW's movie sequel comics (can't recall where I read that, but it seemed a go) or other TF stuff.

No idea on sales -- do Titan even make public that sort of info?

Cliffjumper
2007-09-06, 02:03 PM
Originally posted by Denyer
No idea on sales -- do Titan even make public that sort of info?

It'll be in industry stuff, so I'll keep my eyes peeled - we usually only get figures quarterly, though.

inflatable dalek
2007-09-07, 07:55 PM
Originally posted by Denyer
Assuming it lives, it'll be interesting to see whether they move onto IDW's movie sequel comics (can't recall where I read that, but it seemed a go) or other TF stuff.

The Search For Spock Starscream mini should be well underway by the time they finish the Movie Adaption, so I'd assume so. I'm interested in what they'll do if the comic lasts long enough to do a focus strip on each of the characters. Will they go through the loop again, move through the humans (including those random guards included in the Top Trumps to pad it out...)?

Denyer
2007-09-09, 12:16 AM
An improvement, and more the sort of thing I was hoping the IDW prequel would turn its focus towards after its first issue -- what characters got up to in the course of their search for the Allspark. Reasonably inspired short-form Furman.

The reprint strips also read better, as they're the final third of the issues they're reprinting and thus have natural cliffhanger-type breaking off points. Also the first issues of those two series were arguably their strongest. I'm just a bit worried that kids will drop the title during the lulls of #2, #5, etc. where the middle third of issues are being reprinted and the chopping introduces unnatural breaks.

Might pick up further issues if I see 'em and like the look of the artist/story, but the comic's past its "automatic buy" grace period. So far it's on 2/3 being decent. More of Senior (or Wildman, whose rather rough/traditional pencils suit this colouring style) would get me interested.

Cliffjumper
2007-09-14, 01:02 PM
Shame the main strip's had to switch to black and white already, really. Top key fob, though.

inflatable dalek
2007-09-14, 02:12 PM
Originally posted by Cliffjumper
Shame the main strip's had to switch to black and white already, really. Top key fob, though.

Really? A black and white comic? That'll kill it stone dead then.

Cliffjumper
2007-09-14, 02:27 PM
Originally posted by inflatable dalek
Really? A black and white comic? That'll kill it stone dead then.

No, wait, on closer inspection there's some grey and beige in there. It's a feast for the eye!

Denyer
2007-09-14, 02:32 PM
Unfortunately it's what Hasbro asked for -- the test pages IDW did got sent back, with a note that pre-Cybertron robots needed to be more strongly contrasted with the brighter Autobot Earth modes.

inflatable dalek
2007-09-14, 02:35 PM
Well, they could have at least pointed out the **** up over Prime's alt mode in issue one when they were at it.

Cliffjumper
2007-09-14, 02:43 PM
Originally posted by Denyer
Unfortunately it's what Hasbro asked for -- the test pages IDW did got sent back, with a note that pre-Cybertron robots needed to be more strongly contrasted with the brighter Autobot Earth modes.

Did they say the same for everything in the comic strip? Ratchet being white is no problem. The movie aside, he's always been white. I can handle Ratchet being white. Why does everything else look like someone's been playing with "desaturate" on Photoshop and accidentally hit "Save"? It's like having a comic of Heaven's Gate, but without John Hurt being in it.

Denyer
2007-09-14, 03:04 PM
Rest of the tie-in media (eg, game flashbacks to the planet) follow the same directive; Cybertron's a dark grey metallic planet that's mostly featureless by human standards.

inflatable dalek
2007-09-14, 04:35 PM
Well, that was a bit meh again. Good to see absolutely no explanation for how Ratchet and the others survived that massive explosion last issue either.

Denyer
2007-09-14, 05:27 PM
It was particularly badly explained in the strip, but I think the warpspace missile (or whatever it was called) in #2 flung them randomly across space rather than simply being a bomb.

#2 was crap, even with Roche on art...

inflatable dalek
2007-09-14, 05:30 PM
The Decepticons make missiles that don't kill people but just fling them about a bit? How humanitarian.

Denyer
2007-09-14, 05:34 PM
In this continuity, until the (implied recent) uprising by Megatron the Transformers were a mostly peaceful society, so it grudgingly makes sense...

Just a self-contained springboard Furman can use to put a group of characters instantly into other situations.

inflatable dalek
2007-09-14, 05:37 PM
Surely just bringing the timeframe forward a bit and having the Matrix Allspark Quest already in full swing would do that just as well?

Clogs
2007-09-14, 08:50 PM
Ah, but this is character development, the opportunity to see each individual addressing a personally relevant situation sort of thing. I guess :p

....... Good key fob. I got a Decepticon one!

inflatable dalek
2007-09-14, 11:30 PM
What we learnt about ratchet this issue: He'll do the right thing even if it's against Autobot policy. Now that's groundbreaking character development.

inflatable dalek
2007-09-18, 06:24 PM
You know what I realised when doing the review of issue two? Ratchet was green there. That must have slipped below Hasbro's radar...

Clogs
2007-10-03, 08:25 PM
Hey! Surprise package in post this very morning - I picked up an illuminated Bumblebee T in one of the comps! Cheered me up no end, because I have an awful cold at the mo, but the Beloved grilled me about wasting money until I showed him the relevant comic page.

The Scraplets are seething with jealousy.

inflatable dalek
2007-10-03, 11:29 PM
You have no shame about entering a competition form children?


*Goes of to enter the "Win a lifesize Dalek worth several grand" comp in Doctor Who Adventures...*

Clogs
2007-10-04, 01:11 PM
The T is adult large. Which proves that the comp was not for children... see!

Why are you entering a win a Dalek comp, Dalek? Hoping to have a decoy or a mate to take down the pub?

inflatable dalek
2007-10-04, 06:17 PM
Originally posted by Clogs
The T is adult large. Which proves that the comp was not for children... see!

Nah, it was taking into account most kids are fat bastards nowadays.

Why are you entering a win a Dalek comp, Dalek? Hoping to have a decoy or a mate to take down the pub?

No, because it's worth more than the cost of a small house. Ebay!

Clogs
2007-10-04, 09:20 PM
Originally posted by inflatable dalek
Nah, it was taking into account most kids are fat bastards nowadays.

Mine are two skinny rats.

They both want to win a Dalek. The eldest thinks it'd be cool; the youngest is hoping to exterminate people.

inflatable dalek
2007-10-05, 06:04 AM
Originally posted by Clogs
Mine are two skinny rats.

Well, you thin k of that poor obese, unloved child who's one ray of hope was the chance of winning a Transformers T-Shirt that might- might just win him one sole friend on the playground. He'll probably be reaching for the razor blaeds about now.


Or, on the other hand the readership might be so low you were the only one to enter...

Clogs
2007-10-05, 09:22 PM
Originally posted by inflatable dalek
Or, on the other hand the readership might be so low you were the only one to enter...

By heck! I'll be sure to enter every single competition in the mag from now on.

Have you sent off for the Dr Who Dalek comp yet, then? Think how you could be depriving an innocent child of the innocent fun/pants-wetting terror of owning a life-sized Dalek!

inflatable dalek
2007-10-05, 09:30 PM
Originally posted by Clogs
By heck! I'll be sure to enter every single competition in the mag from now on.

Have you sent off for the Dr Who Dalek comp yet, then? Think how you could be depriving an innocent child of the innocent fun/pants-wetting terror of owning a life-sized Dalek!

I'm telling you, Ebay. Sadly DWA seem to insist on having photo's of their big competition winners in the mag. :(

Clogs
2007-10-06, 10:06 AM
Originally posted by inflatable dalek
Sadly DWA seem to insist on having photo's of their big competition winners in the mag. :(

Surely you'd be big enough? Ah - I see. I could always hire you a Scraplet at reasonable cost if you win...

Cliffjumper
2007-10-09, 04:01 PM
Got #4... the art's a big step-up from last issue, though having a colour palette that went beyond beige probably didn't hurt. The story kinda goes a long way towards explaining why TFs don't really have solo stories, though. Dull as ditchwater.

Devastator finds some holograms that make him angry. He nicks their energy and goes. The End

Fan-tastic. Seeing as Furman clearly doesn't think this thing is worth a damn, it's a massive shame they aren't using it to blood some new writers...

inflatable dalek
2007-10-10, 06:59 AM
I think the comic needs to be doing post Movie-stuff ASAP really (especially considering that at the current rate the Movie Adaption won't finish until around the time the second one comes out...)

Denyer
2007-10-10, 01:35 PM
Originally posted by inflatable dalek
the Movie Adaption I don't think they're going to print it. The film's out on DVD and most kids wouldn't see any value.

inflatable dalek
2007-10-10, 07:34 PM
In that case it'll still take them a year just to do the Prequel, I suspect most of the target audience is more interested in what happened next.

Housewife2000
2007-10-21, 03:54 PM
Just read #4 as well - looks pretty, lacks anything approaching a story.

If Titan are worried about messing with post-movie continuity, why not pull a Marvel-UK and concentrate on characters released as toys but not featured in any media - Arcee, Longarm, Landmine, Dreadwing, Dropkick, Incinerator, Payload, Stockade, Swindle and Wreckage make up a decent cast of troops.

inflatable dalek
2007-10-21, 07:03 PM
I like how the person who puts the cover together seems to think Starscream is Devastator.

This was OK actually, a old story but made slightly more fun by having a lead character who doesn't give a **** about the mystery. It would be nice if they'd standardise the Cybertronian mode from artist to artist though...

No way was that Mirage drawing done by a 9 year old.

inflatable dalek
2007-11-10, 11:32 PM
Issue 5- Another fun little romp but it was perhaps a mistake to have two stories with ghosts in in a row. And non Movie toy characters!

Housewife2000
2007-11-21, 12:55 PM
I liked this story, since it seemed to do more - there were two plots intertwined, and while on their own they would be pretty weak, the combination at least made it feel more developed than the last piece.

I'm growing tired of Furman's dialogue though - I'd love to see another writer have a go at this. This is probably as close as Transformers will get to the proving grounds of 2000AD's Future Shocks.

Nice art work, although the non-movie characters based on the classic G1/G3 design clash rather badly with Ironhide's appearance, despite Guido's clean unifying art.

Finally, is that a Transmetal 2 driver I noticed at the end? Interesting...

inflatable dalek
2007-11-21, 01:43 PM
Originally posted by Housewife2000

Nice art work, although the non-movie characters based on the classic G1/G3 design clash rather badly with Ironhide's appearance, despite Guido's clean unifying art.

Where were they? The only other characters I recall seeing were all based on repaints of Energon toys rather than G1 homages...

Housewife2000
2007-11-21, 02:53 PM
Sorry - I meant the design aesthetic favoured by the G1 / Unicron saga character models, i.e. the non-movie look traditionally used in toys/comics/animation since 1984.

I like the movie designs, and I like the Energon / pre-movie designs, I just don't think they work together. Besides, there's plenty of non-movie characters from the movie toy-line who could have fulfilled this role.

inflatable dalek
2007-12-04, 07:46 AM
Well for reasons best known to Mr. Tesco just in time for the new issue to come out we've suddenly had a whole load of issue 5 show up in the store- which is odd as i only saw one copy in the week of release.

These are "Tesco exclusive" (I don't know the ones we had earlier were or not as I get mine from Smith's) and have "Two exclusive to tesco Gifts"- though the packaginf doesn't say what. Assuming they don't mean the disc launcher that came with the non exclusive version all I could see was a funky sticker sheet.

Still, a good sign as the Co wouldn't go in for a deal like that unless the title had been performing well for them.



[Disclaimer incase the comic suddenly gets cancelled: This would have been decided after the first couple of issues so sales could have fallen hugely since then...]

Housewife2000
2007-12-20, 09:48 AM
((Spoilers))

Issue 6 - Hmmm, this doesn't feel much like a Jazz tale at all.

I don't mind the fact Jazz doesn't sound like his on-screen movie incarnation (since it's one of the worst aspects of the movie), but he doesn't sound like any incarnation of Jazz either. Instead he comes across as "generic Autobot who's tired of war". Zzzzz.

The story packs a lot in, which I like, but it's a fairly bland Futureshock type tale, with a cop-out resolution. The flashback adds nothing, since Jazz doesn't overcome his guilt about Clocker. And once again I don't see the point in using Clocker, whose G3 look is completely at odds with the movie designs, when Landmine, Arcee and Longarm are all going spare.

Since the Clocker/guilt angle is ignored, the message of the story is basically "your war-torn homeworld is better than a giant living planet that absorbs people". Oh, and the other message is "Jazz is a bit crap": Of all the movie-bots to portray as needing to be rescued, it compounds his inglorious end in the movie to have him shown as gullible and useless here.

That all said, I quite liked the art, which was fluid and energetic, and the colouring was bright and detailed. I've seen better but I've seen a lot worse and it's nice to get some variety.

inflatable dalek
2007-12-20, 09:55 AM
Considering the Movie makes it clear that Jazz only acts like that because he's asimilated Earth's culture it makes sense for a Pre-Internet access Jazz to be totally different. I rather liked his Sustreakerish persona here.

Housewife2000
2007-12-20, 10:12 AM
You're absolutely right - his dialogue tics would be different, but I just didn't think he came across as First Lieutenant material, eager to lead the charge.

inflatable dalek
2007-12-20, 10:24 AM
It's unclear though exactly how long before we meet him in the film this is- The fact they still think there's a inhabitable Cybertron to go back to suggests this is before the war ruined the planet so he's got a long time to evolve. he maint not even be first Lt. yet.

Clogs
2007-12-31, 01:06 PM
So... Issue 7. Starscream. What do you think, um?

The storyline has distinct potential, what with proving, in this universe, that Sparks come as self-supporting mini-Underbases... er, AllSparks. Starscream fillets some of the machines brought to life in the movie, which is a sad farewell to Can Dew, and re-animates dead Decepticons to fight again; interestingly, the Sparks are simply a lifeforce and do not confer an identity on the recipient, indicating that that would be totally down to programming. The resurrected shells are nasty, violent and undirected, an echo of why Sector Seven had that badly damaged testing room under the Hoover Dam, perhaps.

Oh, nice tip of the hat to Starscream's Brigade.

However, the art was shameful. No, 'shameful' does not convey the sheer bloody depths of the horror of it. Even my Scraplets both complained that humans, let alone Cybertronians, are not those shapes. In many panels, it was hard to work out what was going on, since, additionally, the colouring was poor and sketchy. It all rather detracted from the intentions of the story.

inflatable dalek
2008-01-04, 04:54 PM
Who the hell is this "Boo" character doing the art? Geoff Senior's poster had me weeping for what could have been.

Is the fact this issue claims the end of the film happened in LA the biggest goof in a Transformers comic ever? Where have Sam, Mikela and the soldiers gone? Why-in a storyline trying not to contradict any possible sequels- is Barricade one of the dead Decepticons?

By far the worst issue yet.

Housewife2000
2008-01-06, 07:23 PM
At first I thought the artist might be Boo Cook (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boo_Cook) who does a lot of 2000AD strips, but the art style is more like Steve Roberts who did Bec & Cawl (http://www.2000adonline.com/?zone=thrill&page=profiles&choice=bec), although both artists are a lot better than this Transformers strip.

RUNAMOK
2008-01-10, 03:22 PM
For you little BOO seach, I have a little info on this "artist"

Aparantly Boo has a deviantart profile under the name TheBoo, I won't post a link due what it contains...

Other information is also known, but it's irellevant to this.

inflatable dalek
2008-01-10, 08:49 PM
Ta Runsy, I think I've seen the Deviant link, but annoyingly it doesn't include the bloke/girls real name.

Neuronutter
2008-01-11, 03:45 PM
So how did UK go from great artists like Senior, Don and Nick to Boo? Who's next and is the quality going to continue to be this bad? If so I will stop collecting these.

Clogs
2008-01-11, 09:17 PM
Originally posted by Neuronutter
So how did UK go from great artists like Senior, Don and Nick to Boo? Who's next and is the quality going to continue to be this bad? If so I will stop collecting these.

No, don't stop collecting! They might ask one of my Scraplets to draw an up-coming feature! Must send in a portfolio right now!

Heh.

inflatable dalek
2008-01-12, 12:30 AM
Originally posted by Neuronutter
So how did UK go from great artists like Senior, Don and Nick to Boo? Who's next and is the quality going to continue to be this bad? If so I will stop collecting these.

And how did they go from people with actual names to Boo? I mean, I'll bet that Stewart Johnson had at least been in the industry a few years and gotten a reputation before asking to be credited as Staz...

Clogs
2008-01-30, 09:05 PM
Issue 8 and I got sent the AUTOBOT freebies - again. I mean, on balance of probabilities, it could be Autobot every time. Or else the blastards know all about me and figure I'll just have to go buy the Decepticon version, too.

The storyline is fine and dandy, with another set of soldiers rather than having to borrow Lennox et al, who may, therefore, be adjudged to be appearing in film number 2(?) Even a hint that two of the new crew don't make it past their first encounter with Transformers. Straightforward story, no frills, and could this be the end for Scorponok?

Oh, and such lovely, lovely artwork! There's a sense of heat and sand and movement conveyed by both the drawing and colouring.

Housewife2000
2008-02-07, 10:01 AM
Great, great art - everything feels grounded and realistic, which makes him perhaps the first artist to really gel with the movie aesthetic.
The story, however, seems a bit strange - all of the soldiers are individually introduced and named, but then go on to play the role of generic soldiers. Perhaps this is the set up for a string of future stories?

Drivaaar
2008-02-24, 10:43 AM
Hi everyone

Just received my copy of issue 9 in the post (featuring art by Simon Williams, and colours by myself). Hope you guys enjoy it!

Denyer
2008-02-24, 04:58 PM
Neat. Am considering picking up the reprints once they come out, as I've read the other material it's being collected with... :)

http://idwpublishing.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?p=58200

^ On the subject of Titan, anyone have any guesses on this Amazon listing?

inflatable dalek
2008-02-24, 05:34 PM
I'm guessing stuff circs Edge of Extinction, more from the credit listing rather than the synopsis (which as you say, is all over the shop). If this is going to be an series of reprints hopefully they'll focus more initialy on the stuff IDW can't do (Death's Head, ect).

Denyer
2008-02-24, 07:32 PM
I'm more speculating on how this has arisen -- if Titan could reprint anything they wanted, they'd surely do the Marvel stuff that's in most demand. Ergo I figure it's a co-operative with IDW.

inflatable dalek
2008-02-25, 08:05 AM
I'm more speculating on how this has arisen -- if Titan could reprint anything they wanted, they'd surely do the Marvel stuff that's in most demand. Ergo I figure it's a co-operative with IDW.

I'd imagine it's not most likely the case that when they were putting the book of their own stuff together someone realised they still had the rights to the old stuff so they slapped together something based on what sold well last time in a belated bit of Movie Bandwagon Jumping.

Denyer
2008-02-25, 08:33 AM
I'd imagine it's not most likely the case that
Um. Is that sentence meant to have punctuation?

There's nothing stopping IDW from distributing to the UK / internationally -- as happened quite publicly with DW: http://forum.newsarama.com/showthread.php?t=580 -- and the license has thus far been offered on the basis of territories.

Possibly related, IDW trades seem to have gotten cheaper... Target: 2006 / Spotlights V2 / etc. are £12.99 on Amazon; Devastation and Dinobots are £10.15 -- they also have US dollar prices in the advance listings. Ditto the BW Sourcebook having a US list price. Wonder if this is because they're advanced listings copied over from Amazon US or because of license use changes?

inflatable dalek
2008-02-28, 09:04 PM
Issue 9-

Once again the quality of the issue is determined by the quality of the artist, with Simon Williams doing a good job (I know he did some stuff for the BW Sourcebook, but hows about letting him on a Spotlight IDW?). The script is probably the laziest Furman has done yet, he's just taken Rhythms of Darkness and changed the names. Will it be the American flag that stops the other countries nuking the US this time? And why would Optimus only have one guard on him (that's less security than Megatron had)?

The only interesting thing to look forward to is weather or not this is going to feed into the main continuity or not- From the contents page talk of "Realities being torn" my guess is this is a Yesterday's Enterprise situation.

Are Arcee and Arcee in G1 colours different characters in the toyline then?

Oh, and bad show to the contents page, for bigging up the mystery of what Bumblebee is after only to have a pic of the Frozen prime right there staring you in the face...

Drivaaar
2008-02-29, 12:32 AM
Issue 9-
Are Arcee and Arcee in G1 colours different characters in the toyline then?


The script for this issue states that the "Arcee in G1 colours" is called Elita-One.

inflatable dalek
2008-02-29, 06:45 AM
The script for this issue states that the "Arcee in G1 colours" is called Elita-One.

Insider knowledge,thank you.

inflatable dalek
2008-03-30, 08:21 PM
Issue 10:


part two improves things greatly, there's not much in the way of plot but the action scenes are all handled well and it's fun to see the Decepticon's just let loose.

The rotating art team is a shame in one respect though as everyone seems to have had a slight redesign (the aformentioned Elita-One now having a head like her G1 namesake is the biggest one).

And we have our first firm confirmation of sales figures, the 2007 issues averaged a circulation of 45092. No idea how good that is for the UK comics industry, but that compares very well to IDW's sales.

AndyTurnbull
2008-04-20, 11:46 PM
You can find out how it's doing against other UK titles here (http://www.abc.org.uk/cgi-bin/gen5?runprog=nav/abcdata&pubtype=mag&type=consumer&p=&menuid=abcdata|magdata|consumemag)

And just to summarise (blatantly c & p'd from elsewhere)

It's about 10k behind Panini's Spectacular Spider-Man, almost doing double the Dandy's sales and 5k behind Beano Max. Twenty behind regular Beano, 110k behind Doctor Who adventures but coupled with it being a fortnightly title that might be doing it a disservice. It's also behind Scooby Doo - but these are all fairly established titles so I'd be more interested in seeing things in a year or so.

Andy

inflatable dalek
2008-04-24, 07:09 AM
Issue 11!

After the shaky start I'm enjoying the Twilight story a lot now, it's not ball burstingly amazing but it's a good fun fast read.

Three thoughts on the rest of the issue:

The two reprints looked shorter than normal (though I need to check page counts and whatnot to be sure), are they going to eek an extra part out of these so all three stories end in issue 13 allowing them to do the 2000AD annual relaunch issue thing?

The art page doesn't have any examples of people's attempts at the "How to Draw" pieces, which tickled me for some reason.

Starscream taking the piss out of the txtspeak letter, horay!

AndyTurnbull
2008-04-24, 10:35 AM
I've a funny feeling that's what they're doing with the reprints.

I agree with you, the ongoing strip is a good fun read and Fabio Makoto Ono's work was splendid.

One thing that annoys me, the use of the robotic font for human dialogue as well. It just sticks out as being wrong.

Andy

Housewife2000
2008-05-07, 04:29 PM
Likes:
The artwork, in general is nice, with clean lines and some solid renderings of the movie style characters. The colours are good, and the story barrels along at a fairly solid pace.

Dislikes:
Some of the details in the art on the main strip - specifically the robot modes not matching the vehicle modes - lets the overall quality down.
The cover - truly horrible. It looks strangely like it was traced, the colours are poor and the background is non-existant. Oh for the days of the painted punchline covers of Marvel UK!
Finally, I'm just not grabbed by the story. I'd have thought the mission statement for doing a movie-verse TF story would be a focus on real world details, widescreen action and a strong sense of humour. Instead, it feels too simple, too cheesy. Perhaps that's a side effect of the small page count, but I'm just not sold.

zigzagger
2008-07-04, 02:08 PM
Once a U.K exclusive featured in the Titan TF UK magazine, is now available to everyone. These stories expand what has already been established from the IDW Movie Prequel books. This is your all purpose Saga of the Allspark #1 reaction and discussion thread. Come, tell us what you thought.

Due to arrive along with All Hail Mgeatron #1 July 10th according to grahamcrakers.com shipping schedule.
http://grahamcrackers.com/newcomics.htm

zigzagger
2008-07-11, 06:50 AM
Well, heh heh heh, Devastator is STILL Devastator here (i.e. not Brawl). That is all.

By the way, would it make more sense if I just moved this into the existing Titan TF UK thread, and just change up the thread title (Titan TF UK/Saga of The Allspark)? Or would that just spoil it for those who haven't read the UK stuff already?

inflatable dalek
2008-07-11, 06:51 AM
As the storyline is incompatible with Reign of Starscream I guess IDW weren't to bothered by the naming thing...

If the thread don't get much more action in the next few days I'd say merge'em.

Housewife2000
2008-07-11, 08:18 PM
While I already have the original Titan strips, I couldn't help picking up another copy - well a couple of copies - because GOOD GRAVY I'M IN PRINT!!!!! I've had a smile on my face all day since wandering into Forbidden Planet in London and seeing my Mosaic, The Passenger, get published.

Totally.
Awesome.

Blitzwing
2008-07-11, 08:45 PM
I haven't decided whether or not I want to pick this up... what is it exactly? A prequel to the first movie that's different from the other IDW prequel? Or is this the series that continue's from the idea that Megatron and the Decepticons won the final battle in the first movie?

inflatable dalek
2008-07-11, 09:28 PM
It's the first two issues here:

http://tfarchive.com/comics/titan/guide.php?s=titan_01_13

It's Prequel material that ties into the IDW Prequel (which it was printed alongside originally), but IDW aren't tieing into it themselves for Reign of Starscream. The alternate timeline arc doesn't start till issue 9 (or around #5 of these reprints).

The main selling point of this issue is some fine Senior and Roche art, the stories themselves are fun but throwaway.

Blitzwing
2008-07-11, 10:33 PM
Hmm... I guess I'll give it a browse through next time I'm in the comic shop and buy it if I like the art enough.

Nevermore
2008-07-14, 07:14 PM
Okay, I haven't read the original Titan prints of these stories yet, so this is my first exposure to them.

Plot and dialogue are decent, though nothing stellar, there's no major "WTF they screwed up everything" like with All Hail Megatron right now.

Art...

...


Man, it's good to see Senior back, but damn, the movie designs don't work with his style. At all.

Also, why is Optimus Prime in his Earth robot mode complete with Peterbilt truck kibble and red and blue flame deco, and yet he transforms into a suddenly mostly grey (but not at all based-on-the-toy) Protoform pod mode?

Second story has better art by Nick Roche. Megatron's robot mode looks slightly odd on page 1, and while all have robot modes with apparently-Cybertronian-alt-mode kibble, it's odd that all of them already have their later Earth mode colors. Oh well. Layouts, dynamic and visual storytelling are decent, as are the faces. Nick > Senior, these days. Sorry, Geoff.

Cover by Nick Roche is nothing short of awesome.

Housewife2000
2008-07-16, 04:38 PM
Issue 14.

Tracing the movie publicity stills? Twice within the same strip?

Not cool beans Titan.

Not cool beans at all.

Drivaaar
2008-07-16, 05:16 PM
Issue 14.

Tracing the movie publicity stills? Twice within the same strip?

Not cool beans Titan.

Not cool beans at all.

Twice?! I wish... There's more than two occurances of this....

With the exception of page 2, every single shot of Strongarm is the same.

Every single shot Arcee (in robot mode) is the same.

Virtually every shot of Ratchet is the same.

With all the above there are slight variances in scale, or they've been tilted, or horizontally flipped.

Every shot of Prime from the back is the same.

Decepticon drone jets are cloned from about 3 different drawings.

Starscream's first appearance features two uses of the same jet in different panels, with a very very similar drawing as he flies away.

Humans fleeing from the attack have been copied and pasted too.

Quite a lot of the lineart in this issue was digitally manipulated it seems.

But I have to be honest - not my favourite UK TF art. :( Sorry Mr Erskine....

zigzagger
2008-07-18, 04:02 AM
DISCLAIMER: Due to lower traffic, the "Saga of the Allspark" thread has been merged with the Titan TF UK thread. Since the SOTA stories are IDW re-issues of the Titan stories, new readers should bring caution with them when posting here and expect spoilers.

(original post also updated)

EDIT: Though if it does become an issue, than I have no qualms with placing the SOTA posts back in their own thread. Shouldn't be too hard to tell the difference.

inflatable dalek
2008-07-18, 08:49 AM
It won't be an issue for a while anyway. Each of the early issues is effectively standalone despite a very lose connecting thread so knowing rough details of later issues won't ruin the enjoyment of the current ones to much.

inflatable dalek
2008-07-18, 01:40 PM
Issue 14:

The art was a mixed bag and the notion of the US Government deciding all giant robots are teh evils was hugely stock and stupid (though at least some of them are under outside control). However, the use of the Gaia hypothesis was surprisingly adult for a comic aimed very much at the younger end of the market, even if I suspect Furman has just been watching Edge of Darkness on DVD.

Housewife2000
2008-12-12, 12:45 PM
Issue #19 (I think, I don't have it handy... and Titan's home page are still advertising October's strip...)

Interesting. On the one hand, last issues reveal of the surprise villain was pretty annoying - he really needs to be laid to rest for a while. But on the other hand, this month they actually seem to be taking the concept in a slightly different direction.

I like Cosmo's art a lot - loved his cover to #17. He seems to make the movie designs work despite simplifying them a hell of a lot. Titan's use of such a wide variety of artists harks back to the old days of Marvel UK - you get something different every week, for better or worse, and it's letting a lot of new or under appreciated talent reach a wider audience. I liked Davis-Hunt's work from a few months back, which seemed about a billion times better than his recent stint on 2000AD's Stalag 666.

As an aside, this is my first exposure to Megs: Origin and BW: Ascending. Neither seems to make any sense, but they're kinda pretty.

inflatable dalek
2008-12-12, 12:55 PM
The use of Unicron (I think it's OK not to be shy about saying the name, he's on the cover of the current issue after all. Even if someone thankfully realised none of the target audience would know what he is and shoved Optimus in there as well) is down to one of three things:

1: A smart introduction to a new concept for the kids reading the comic that will also spark nostalgia in their parents who otherwise have had no exposure to Transformers media for twenty years.

2: A smart way of foreshadowing aspects of the Revenge of the Fallen script Furman saw.

3: Furman has no other ideas.

On the plus side I did like how the end of #18 gave Unicron some lines emphasising why him possessing Cybertron was a bad idea rather than just relying on a name most of the readers won't recognise to create a cliff-hanger.


Have the American reprints ended now then? Odd considering they weren't selling that much less than the officinal figures for All Hail Megatron and were all new money for old rope.

Housewife2000
2009-02-26, 11:47 AM
#22 - Hmmm, I seem to be drawn to comment whenever Cosmo White does a strip - and I'll say it again: his art is great. Perfect match for the movie designs and the intended audience. And he's one of the few TF artists whose humans don't look horrible or just horribly out of place.

That said, the plot was a little weak - Starscream's conquered part of the US and set up borders, but then leaves them unmanned? If it's part of a trap, how come the Autobots never feel like they're in trouble?

And 3 issues later I still have the same feelings about Megs: Origin and BW: Ascending - pretty but incomprehensible. What the target audience makes of them is anyone's guess.

Clogs
2009-02-26, 08:43 PM
And 3 issues later I still have the same feelings about Megs: Origin and BW: Ascending - pretty but incomprehensible. What the target audience makes of them is anyone's guess.

My particular target audience decided the UK strip was an okay story all along, nice piccies, but didn't get the whole Megatron-being-there thing until bluntly pointed out in the final couple of frames. This is a story for the (innocent) kids QED. Said target audience then flicked through the supporting Megs and BW pages to read the competitions.