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View Full Version : Transformers Spotlight: Hardhead (Revelation Part 2)


zigzagger
2008-07-10, 10:18 PM
Not too long of a wait, eh? Excellent. The second round of Furman's Revelation arc is about to begin. I hope you're excited. This is your all purpose Spotlight: Hardhead - Revelation Part 2 reaction and discussion thread! What will be the fate of Nightbeat? What uncovered truths lie beneath the surface of Gorlam Prime? Prepare to be, erm, Revelated!

Due to ship July 16th along with Reign of Starscream #3 according to grahamcrackers.com shipping schedule.
http://www.grahamcrackers.com/newcomics.htm

Potatobot
2008-07-16, 04:16 PM
all round a good show as far as action goes
though i would have liked to have seen banzaitrons team being ripped apart by monstructor instead of having it done off panel.
my only quibble is that the plan of having optimus prime eliminated by night beat was a bit weak......
i mean he had to have had plenty of chances until this point on earth didnt he? unless they wanted him offed at a specific point in time or place...

on the other hand though
we have the first four autobot pretender candidates :clap:

zigzagger
2008-07-16, 10:01 PM
Mmm. I suddenly have the hankering to read Spotlights Nightbeat, Galvatron, Optimus Prime and Arcee. Ooo, they'd feel right at home with this (minus some of the discrepancies from some of the aforementioned).

So what can I say, aside from being upset that I didn't get the Roche variant cover like I wanted? I mean, like, my Revelation collection will be all mix-matched and stuff. Anyhooo, all and all, this is a pretty nice follow up to Spotlight: Cyclonus, following in a similar pace, with plenty of content to spare (which is more than I can so for...erm, nevermind). Come to think of it, the pacing, as well as the "all stakes" plot is reminiscent to Stormbringer. But that could be just because Thunderwing is here, and a not so subtle hint that more "Pretenders" will be showing up. Could be intentional attempt to recapture the feel of that series, but I really could care less. Some folks complained Spotlight: Wheelie borrowed aspects from Spotlight: Kup, but I was still pleased with the final results.

Though, honestly, I would have preferred that Furman have not teased so much of the issue's finale. Most folks, myself at any rate, who have been following along have long suspected that Nightbeat would get a bullet through the noggin. The element of tragedy that Furman was most likely shooting for here would have most likely been better received. Then again, because I was expecting it, this did provide an element of anticipation (or am I thinking of suspense) that made me antsy from start to finish. And I certainly wasn't expecting both of them to go down (assuming that is what happened. I'm really not sure).

True, it is a pity this series has been reduced to accommodate...well, you know, as it would've been great fun to see Banzaitron's forces being trampled by Monstructor, but isn't really necessary, so its' omission is understandable. Still, a Banzaitron exposé would be lovely. Perhaps we'll see more of him in Part 3, which promises to finally wrap up the Magnificence story.

But goodness, so much is happening here. At 24 pages, two more than the usual, plus a third used to recap the last issue, I can't complain too much (edit: nevermind, just recounted. The extra two pages are used for the recap, etc). Proof one can have an action based issue with plenty of substance. And though there is a little less lead character exposition than there was in Spotlight: Cyclonus, it still feels like Hardhead is the primary focus here. He's portrayed nicely, and I am happy that we finally got a chance to get to know him...assuming we'll ever see him again. He's a good character. Then again, Hardhead does seem to fall under the usual archetype of IDW's tragic Autobot characters. It must really suck to be an Autobot in the IDW-verse.

Like a good grade of proverbial cocaine, my TF comic withdrawal has been satiated for the time being. Well, certainly better than the proverbial low grade crack I bought last Thursday...eh-hem :glance:
4 dirty hypodermic needles out of 5

wolfbolt86
2008-07-17, 01:57 AM
I like it, has some good action and advances the plot well. The only question I have is what type of cells is Jetfire using to create the shells? Also did it look to anyone else that Nova Prime has a Matrix? The only grip I have is Hardheads chin. It looks like Animated Blitzwing's hothead face.

Commander Shockwav
2008-07-17, 03:22 AM
Wow. This issue was almost as good as the last.

This is the kind of pace that I've really been hoping for.

Without a doubt, these last two issues are the best since the first few issues of Stormbringer. The art is great and the story is peak-form Furman.

The cast is first class and continues to expand. And expand with purpose, not just throwing them in for the hell of it.

Simon's starting to go epic on us, and I for one, welcome that change. The Dead Universe is finally getting the attention it deserves.

We have some kickass confrontations looming ahead these next two issues, not the least being Nova vs. Optimus. Here comes Computron. Even Banzaitron's Secret Service will play some role.

My guess for the three guardians over the Nega-cores? Thunderwing, Sixshot, and Monstructor.

The subplots started in the Spotlights are starting to gel nicely, and it really feels good. Real good.

Kudos to all involved in Revelations, in particular Simon. He's raised his game these last two issues, and I hope that the overwhelmingly positive response to them is noted by the editorial team.

This is how it should be done!

Give it an "A-". Took some off for the overly utilized Furmanesque inner dialogue which was unnecessary, but other than that, a great issue.

zigzagger
2008-07-17, 06:19 AM
Ooo, I forgot to mention - am I assuming correctly that the Micromasters seen here are the evolved inhabitants of Gorlam Prime? Seems implied, but I'm not sure.

Potatobot
2008-07-17, 07:14 AM
most likely yes

Energon Hot Shot
2008-07-17, 01:22 PM
Also did it look to anyone else that Nova Prime has a Matrix?

Well, Nova Prime launched the first Ark while he was Prime, so it would make sense if he still had it.

wolfbolt86
2008-07-17, 02:28 PM
I thought that Omega said that he gave it up before he left on Ark One.

Potatobot
2008-07-17, 02:40 PM
do we know what the matrix is this time around though?
is it the orange shelled thing we all know or is it something else entirely

inflatable dalek
2008-07-18, 01:31 PM
Micromasters! Gotta love those guys. With proper non Earth modes as well, see DW, it can be done! (though IDing them all for the review will be fun)>

As has already been said, a hugely strong issue that had a real feel of the story starting to be wrapped up in a way kin to a long running TV show starting to wind down (and who cares about the crap spin off show?). The defeat of Banzaitron- and I may be alone in thinking we didn't need to see it, we know from Prime's Spotlight that watching Monstructor fight is a very dull experience so cut to the aftermath, all we need to know is he's good enough to take down the best- and the seeming death of Nightbeat were very emotive moments in that regard. I say "seeming", because it was a very clean wound and we know IDW formies can survive all sorts of head trauma. Not to mention they might have removed vital personality components and replaced them with teh evil ones leaving the originals still out there. Though if this is the end for the Detective it was a good one.

Oh, and I didn't read it as Hardhead going to die at the end (though he expects it), I suspect he'll show up again.

There were a couple of minor niggles. The first is this is the first place where the artificial speeding up of the storyline shows. Most obviously in the four Proto-Pretenders showing up, getting volunteered for a dangerous mission and being suggested for a dangerous process all in three pages (at a pinch the process could be combiners, but considering the cast I'd go for Thunderwings technology. Though I'm not sure why Jetfire thinks it will protect them from the Expanse). And as mentioned Nightbeat's mission seems just a bit odd, suggesting he was originally going to be involved in something more complicated. If all he was going to do was kill Prime Galvatron could have made a detour and done that whilst collecting Sixshot. Even if it needed to be done at a specific moment how would they have guaranteed Nightbeat would have been with him at the time?

Also, in a even more shocking error, the way the title is laid out on the cover has changed. From Spotlight: Cyclonus: Revelation Part 1 to Spotlight: Revelation Part 2: Hardhead don't they know my OCD can't cope with that sort of thing?

More seriously, my only major worry for the future is that Furman is going to use the Magnificence to switch the plot off in the same way the Matrix normally would.

I see Nightbeat's scan includes Roche, Tipton and Su readings. But who is Dipple?

Potatobot
2008-07-18, 05:51 PM
http://www.idwpublishing.com/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?p=82356&sid=6c325409adc6259da2b21c84a0265f69

5th post from the bottom

Red Dave Prime
2008-07-18, 09:18 PM
Revelations keeps on going good. Hard heads a good choice for this issue - simple personality that doesnt overcrowd everything else thats going on. The shooting of Nightbeat looked great, really well done on the execution (art that is...) The last bit is a touch rushed but no harm with that - the revaltions arc is all the better for it. I can only imagine that the pretenders will be protected by their shell if they enter the exspansion. Or that four pretenders will take out one and get them access to the nega-core.

As for night beats mission I'm hoping that its revealed as to why he had to take prime out and not one of the other DU characters.

Bring on the dealer.

Denyer
2008-07-18, 09:32 PM
Yay. Good. Like. Knackered. More tomorrow maybe... but in brief, the concept of an outwardly taciturn but internally as-eloquent-as-any-other character works particularly well with Hardhead. Frankly, almost any TF should be a sharper thinker than most organics IMO... and they should be exceptional at multitasking, so contemplation in the middle of fight scenes and chases is only natural.

Art sweet as ever. Colours a good match. VSTAP.

Neuronutter
2008-07-19, 10:50 AM
Wow. Well, what I can I say about this issue. For a start, it’s spectacular. Two years of intricate planning is now paying off and Simon sure picked the right name for this arc, ‘cause Revelations and answers is what we’re getting. Nova’s grand scheme, Nightbeat’s role in it, the whole damn thing!

Everything about this issue worked well. The story moved along nicely and Hardhead’s portrayal as a bot who knows his role in the universe and that his time will eventually be up was perfect, as was his cold acceptance that he may have to take out Nightbeat. And Nightbeat’s eventual fate was very well executed. I really hope Furman doesn’t bring him back ‘cause this end was perfect. The whole issue felt very sombre, from Hardhead’s overall perspective on life, to his fate. I wonder what what will become of him (presumably he’ll turn up in the dead universe to spoil Nova’s plans, or is he just dead?).

Nick’s art seemed even more awesome than usual, and that’s saying something and Kris’ colours were also excellent. It’s great to have one colourist on these books to give them an overall feel, rather than the recent disjointed affairs.

So, all in all, this was a wonderful issue. Perfectly executed, and may well be the best issue IDW have done to date. It’s certainly the best Spotlight since Shockwave and I loved Cyclonus. I hope Revelations continues this magnificent run with Doubledealer and Sideswipe!

Halfshell
2008-07-19, 02:03 PM
Random thoughts:

- I presume Jhiaxus was the one controlling Nightbeat/speaking through him?

- Loved that Arcee's scan hyphenated Banzai-Tron, but then when she addressed him, it was absent. Stop messing with us!

- The Magnificence is basically Vector Sigma then, yeah?

- Slight retcon to last issue's ending? I got the impression they were all about to transitionalise.

- I like the fact that there's something in the Dead Universe keeping them alive. Nice little tease.

- There's gonna be a helluva lotta plot going on next month, that's fo shizzle.

- I'd still like to know how the Monstructor Six escaped Omega's prison prior to Spotlight Prime. They're like the jailbreak masters or something. Though the past two times, they've been sprung by the awesome method of sitting about and waiting for somebody else to do it for them.

- Nice to see Omega again. Wonder if he'll bother telling Prime who the rest of the Ark crew were. It might be vaguely relevant... to be able to keep an eye out for them and stuff.

at a pinch the process could be combiners

Jetfire mentions growing cycles. And bearing in mind a cast spoiler for part 4, I think it's pretty obvious to what he's referring.

Though I'm not sure why Jetfire thinks it will protect them from the Expanse

That's why it's called an experiment. ;) Practical science in effect. Learn by doing.

And as mentioned Nightbeat's mission seems just a bit odd, suggesting he was originally going to be involved in something more complicated. If all he was going to do was kill Prime Galvatron could have made a detour and done that whilst collecting Sixshot.

And thus drawn even more unwanted attention. Yeah, great plan. Completely expose themselves even further, and have the full Autobot forces tracking him (as we essentially have now). Whereas if Nightbeat just goes all Boomer suddenly, there's no trail to lead back to them.

It's fairly evident that the original plan involved as little direct contact as possible. If Galvatron and Cyclonus had done their jobs properly in their respective Spotlights, the Autobots would have absolutely no clue what was going on. They'd have a missing Thunderwing (with no live witnesses to the theft), Nightbeat's amnesia and Prime's out of body experience - with nothing to connect them.

inflatable dalek
2008-07-19, 02:30 PM
- I like the fact that there's something in the Dead Universe keeping them alive. Nice little tease.

Yup, I'm also really liking the motivation (albeit still a bit scetchy) established for the DU cast over these first two couple of issues. It's not all about taking over the Universe or spreading the darkness, it's as much about a desire to be able to return home. Makes them seem more credible somehow.


- Nice to see Omega again. Wonder if he'll bother telling Prime who the rest of the Ark crew were. It might be vaguely relevant... to be able to keep an eye out for them and stuff.

I wonder what happened to the rest of the crew (assuming this wasn't the whole lot, but IIRC there were other robots in the flashbacks in Nightbeat and Galvatron). Didn't survive the crossover or refused to go along with the plan presumably?


And thus drawn even more unwanted attention. Yeah, great plan. Completely expose themselves even further, and have the full Autobot forces tracking him (as we essentially have now). Whereas if Nightbeat just goes all Boomer suddenly, there's no trail to lead back to them.

I don't know, it would probably have been easy enough to arrange a death for Optimus during Devastation that could have been made to look either the work of Six Shot or, if he'd let them carry on a bit longer, the Reapers.

Mind, Nightbeat has had at least one chance to arrange a "accidental" death for Prime he hasn't taken (when orbital bouncing the crew back from Brasnya), so I guess they wanted him dead at one very specific moment and Nightbeat wasn't going to have his programming kick off till then. So the death of Koska almost certainly wa sa genuine accident then. Mind, unlike other certain recent Transformer comics I'm actually fairly confident all this will be explained sensibly before the last issue even if it seems a bit rushed now.

Halfshell
2008-07-19, 02:45 PM
I'd imagine the timing would be dictated by the activation of the nega-cores or somesuch. Given the inference that Jhiaxus has the ability to establish direct control over the implant, I'd imagine that he would have just thrown a switch once they were ready, activating whatever subroutine would cause Nightbeat to put a bullet in Prime's brain at the first convenient opportunity.

We don't know the exact necessity for Optimus to die. Do they specifically require him removed, or just the Autobot leader to be taken out of the equation? Kill him off too early, they've got time to regroup and instill a new command. Wait until the time is right, and BAM - massive disarray, and a group of characters in no fit state to stave off the Expansion.

Maybe.

I hope they kill off Prowl. Just to royally screw over other things.

Red Dave Prime
2008-07-20, 09:49 AM
They cant kill prowl off. Didnt you see the first issue of All Hail Megatron? After all, IDW wouldnt just disregard all thats happened just to start a new series would they? :)

Halfshell
2008-07-20, 10:20 AM
They cant kill prowl off. Didnt you see the first issue of All Hail Megatron?

Yes, that's why I said it.

Red Dave Prime
2008-07-20, 07:28 PM
Your sarcasm > my sarcasm :(

Starfield
2008-07-20, 09:12 PM
Doubledealer's boss is out of the picture. Could he now be covering his bases and playing the Autobot now? I don't think revealing the magnificence thing to Prime was part of Banzi-Tron's plan, I think that was Dealer working the situation to his advantage.

Starfield
2008-07-20, 10:55 PM
...the seeming death of Nightbeat were very emotive moments in that regard. I say "seeming", because it was a very clean wound and we know IDW formies can survive all sorts of head trauma.There is also headmaster tech! Give him a new head. I'm half kidding, but the thought does remind me that we haven't seen Jimmy & Verity in a while. Which one would have "Muzzle" as a nickname?

Denyer
2008-07-20, 11:04 PM
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muzzle_(device) ?

Verity, then.

MeGrimlock
2008-07-28, 08:52 PM
This book was just perfect.
Loved the surprising and unexpected depth and complexity in Hardhead's characterization. A somber (but not bitter) fatalist with a (despite all) undying sense of duty and dignity.

Blackjack
2008-08-03, 11:46 AM
Furman's going on multiple origins this time. First the Headmasters, then the Pretenders, the Gestalts, the Micros, the dreaded Fembots now the Action Masters.

Honestly did anyone not notice that all the crew on Garrus 9 except for the Technos, Jetfire, some Euros and FortMax are all Action Masters and Pretenders? I'm betting Jetfire will reformat them in some near story.

And Banzai-trons crew. Practically composed of all the US Action Masters, Roadblock the pretender, and the Combaticons.

How Furman's going to explain the benefits of being a non transforming transformer is gonna be good.

Oh, and the idea Micromasters being half-Gorlamian and half-TF sucks. They are Micromasters, not Gobots, dammit.

Halfshell
2008-08-03, 11:51 AM
Honestly did anyone not notice that all the crew on Garrus 9 except for the Technos, Jetfire, some Euros and FortMax are all Action Masters and Pretenders? I'm betting Jetfire will reformat them in some near story.

Doubtful, seeing that the Furmmeister General isn't in charge of the storyline anymore. I can't see him squeezing it into Maximum Dinobots or The Thirteen.

Denyer
2008-08-03, 12:42 PM
How Furman's going to explain the benefits of being a non transforming transformer is gonna be good.
Why are you assuming they can't transform in this continuity?

inflatable dalek
2008-08-03, 04:19 PM
Why are you assuming they can't transform in this continuity?

I think he means that they're not Action Masters yet but he wonders if Furman seems to be leading to them becoming so, as it looks with the Pretenders.

Cliffjumper
2008-08-05, 02:45 PM
This and Cyke were a bit of a return to form in all... Cyke having a Rocket Punch was the real winner for me.

The only problem is there's zero impact in any sort of death-based 'shock' in an IDW story. Too many devices like CR chambers pinging around, combined with a writer who seems incredibly reluctant to kill off anyone means I don't trust the end of this issue one bit. I mean, now that Furman's been demoted it might well mean he doesn't get around to showing us that the Autobots slung Nightbeat in a CR chamber and he's actually alright. But it could still very well happen, and the only reason it wouldn't is the Scorponok factor...

It's about the only thing that doesn't come off - the sense of plot-threads coming together and things AT-****ING-LAST moving is great, and we're in for a Hell of a ride now. My only quibble? This should have happened a year ago. Who knows, it might have saved Furman's job.

Halfshell
2008-08-05, 03:34 PM
I mean, now that Furman's been demoted it might well mean he doesn't get around to showing us that the Autobots slung Nightbeat in a CR chamber and he's actually alright.

I think a lot depends on whether Furmo decides Nightbeat was smart enough to tell anybody where they were going.

Judging by how often he checks his messages, I'd guess not.

Blackjack
2008-08-13, 08:29 AM
Why are you assuming they can't transform in this continuity?

I'm not assuming they can't transform. :) I mean, judging by kibble alone, Kick-Off, Sprocket and Rollout are blatantly cars, while Treadshot is a gun. What I mean is, Action Masters may come to play soon. Just wondering how Furman gonna make their origins different.

As for Nightbeat and Hardhead, well my guess is they have been 'oh my god they are injusred so much they are almost irreparable'. and so is the case for Verity and Jimmy. Result: new Headmasters, just like the Rebirth.

Nightbeat with Verity and Hardhead with Jimmy. Might work.

Pacerwolf
2008-08-20, 09:41 PM
I got Revelations #2 Spotlight Hardhead far later since i live in Scandinavia but when i got it i could only agree with the positive reviews i've read about it
here! IDW Hardhead is far more interesting and does really get more characterisation in IDW than he ever did in the Marvel TF comics.

It was sad to see Nightbeat go but it was written well at least and who knows if he will somehow get revived. The "OW!" moment from Hardhead was great and i seconded the "Wha..?" reaction from NB/Jhiaxus when he went: :wtf: ?!