View Full Version : Spotlight: Mirage

2008-02-29, 06:37 PM
The skeptic of the Autobot cause is here with his own story to tell. Get ready to wrap your scaly tentacles around this one, fellow creatures. This is your all-purpose, no holds barred, Transformers Spotlight: Mirage reaction and discussion thread. Now go, little creature, discuss so we may all gawk.

Due to arrive March 5th according to an anonymous source (?)
Stay tuned for confirmation!

EDIT: Confirmed for March 5th, creatures!

2008-02-29, 06:41 PM
And the hits just keep on coming.

2008-02-29, 08:30 PM
Ugh, I made typos.

I was looking more forward to Grimlock personally (it wasn't originally clear which would come out first). It being a sort of missing link in the scheme of the main arc.

2008-02-29, 08:36 PM
The moment Ryall said Grimlock was April I guessed Mirage would be next... just not so soon.

Still waiting on Arcee and Dev 6, and now I'm told there's anotherothernother comic next week. It's like ZOMGosh. Really making up for that huge yawning wait in December...

2008-03-01, 01:30 AM
The moment Ryall said Grimlock was April I guessed Mirage would be next... just not so soon.

Yeah, I remember the blog. I was just hoping he was wrong and got his dates mixed up. :(

2008-03-05, 06:34 PM

2008-03-05, 08:57 PM

I'm sorry, I don't mean sound too harsh, but I did not like this one. True the story is very self contained, having little to do with the main arc, that's not the problem (edit: and it never has been). It just doesn't read like the rest of IDW's output.There's little substance here, the dream sequence plot is cliched, the characterisations are sadly one dimensional and banal, offering little insight or consideration of their roles in the larger scheme of the IDW-verse, and there's no resolution, therefore felt irrelevant. If anything, because this tale stands sooooo far away from the main arc, one could easily slot it into any TF continuity and none would be the wiser. So really, it could simply be a direct homage to the original '84 cartoon.

I really have nothing else to say about it.

Sorry, I am not feeling generous today.
1 out of 5

Now...where's Grimlock.

2008-03-06, 02:57 AM
Just finished it.

Honestly, it came across more like a really long Mosaic than your typical plot-relevant Spotlight. The whole thing was rather "meh", if you ask me.

Guido's art was as awesome as usual, though.

Yeah, I got a definite "Mosaic" vibe from this. I appreciate the ambiguity of the whole thing though, since it's not really clear if both Mirages are real, or if he's constantly in flux thanks to the Zodiac energy. Plus, it's not bad as a short story on it's own; but since the other books in this line have been full of plot stuff, it suffers in comparision.

I wish the author had tried to fit the Autobots' characterizations more with the rest of IDW. Ass-kicking Hound I liked, but Prime surrendering just didn't fit with the what we've seen of him so far. As it was, there was a little bit of a fan-written, "this is how I think they'd act" feel to the characters.

Edit: It occurs to me that this one, and Ramjet might have worked better if paired together somehow. I realize that couldn't really happen, but they both feel like they belong in a kind of IDW-verse anthology, sort of like short stories. They aren't bad, really, but are too thin to stand on their own.

Commander Shockwav
2008-03-06, 02:49 PM
Let me start by saying the art was fantastic, some of my favorite by IDW to date. Guido really rocks when it comes to creating that cartoonish vibe.

As far as the story goes, I just don't get it.

This is the first time I've been stumped by a Transformers comic.

Maybe someone could bring out the finger puppets and explain it to me, cause I'm a bit confused.

Was the whole thing a dream? Was that Zodiac thing a different dimension? Some fans have said it's the future Mirage vs. the past Mirage?

If it's a tale that is intentionally left nebulous, open to reader interpretation, then mission accomplished. But if was meant to have a conclusive moment of clarity and revelation, it fails miserably.

I have always liked Mirage as a character and his indecisiveness. But it felt kind of odd to see him treacherously leading a Decepticon seige. Just seemed too evil for him. Then again, it's a dream. Or is it?

This tale, like Ramjet, is purely stand alone, which is fine by me. As long as it delivers the goods, I don't think it's crucial for a Spotlight to always tie directly into the main events. Certainly, it should be in the same continuity though.

Anyway, I enjoyed the art so much, I have to go up from a "C-" to a "B-".

2008-03-06, 05:52 PM
Initial thoughts.
Big panels, sparse dialogue... feels padded. Dialogue felt a bit... off. Other than that, really enjoyed it. Good "throwaway" fun. Wouldn't be surprised if zodiac energy comes back again later.

Conceptually decent, but not enough story to go around. And glancing at other comments, seems I'm not alone in that thought.

Serviceable. 3/5. As a 4-5 page backup strip, perfectly fine. As a 22-page story of its own... erm, no thanks.

Red Dave Prime
2008-03-07, 07:46 PM
Actually felt that this would have suited Punch/ Counterpunch a bit better (albeit, not with the grim apocolypse era ending). Also reminded me of the episode in Heroes where they are in the future and Sylar (main bad guy) has won. A touch of that kind of connection to the current story would have made it more involving (say if it was revealed that Megatron gained the upper hand after Thunderwing Pass or even some link to the expansion plot). Its a nice enough story, and hound comes across as a little dynamo but it does feel a touch too throw away for my tastes. It could have been an x-men issue. From the 80's. :joke:

inflatable dalek
2008-03-08, 11:48 AM
Well, if Arcee was an example of how bad art can drag down an OK comic, this shows how good art can elevate an average. Whilst it's OK knockabout fun (even if it suffers from New Outer Limits Syndrome of the predictable twist) it's really hard to find anything to say about. Either it's all a dream or a parallel Universe so there's no bearing on the wider plot and it's bloody hard to find plotholes or out of character moments. The only real food for thought is where the last page ocurs in the main timeline. If it is a dream it has to be after Soundwave has revealed himself in order for Mirage to imagine him in tapedeck mode.

The big missed oportunity is that alternate Universe stories are, at their best, a chance to learn more about the regular characters by seeing how they react to situations they're not normally in. This misses that trick by focusing on a character we've not seen before.

Oh, and Mirage offcially beats Astrtrain for silliest alt mode. OK, he's got a driver now, but a no longer in production F1 car driving down the street won't fool anyone...

2008-03-08, 06:50 PM
What could have been quite a nice entry level character setup for a future regular, a la Blaster, ended up just being a glorified Mosaic. And maybe there'd be nothing wrong with that, but I think this suffers having come so soon after the end of Devestation and Spotlight Arcee.

I think it was the suppourt character choice that jarred the most. The general IDW stroyline has a really satisfying mix of popular favourites, redeveloped surprises and lesser known blank canvases, all in similarly interesting contexts and groups. So to go from that to a cast picked almost exclusively from an intermediate knowledge of the Season 2 cartoon was just really lazy, and disappointing. But it was all a dream, so it doesn't really have to follow any continuity, I suppose.

And the reactions were just all over the shop. For (what seemed to be) the last Autobots alive, Prime didn't seem vastly upset,. For the first part, he just stands there, like some sort of Past Times ornament. He asks a few questions and such, but for what seems like the last stand of the Autobots, he doesn't seem down, or angry, or proactive. Maybe he was conserving energon. And, of course, this was a dream, so it doesn't really matter, does it?

In fact, the more I read this, the more disappointed I get. Starscream is just a non-entity, Soundwave's appearence seems to suck all the joy of his potential earthern escapades dry, and what could've been a nice reveal at the end (with a new earthern or even cybertronian mode for Mirage) was missed entirely. And what's he doing on earth any... just a dream. Or is it? I don't care.

There was so much potential in Mirage, too. He could've stayed a Decepticon, but a secret Autobot sympathiser as well, with several dues ex machina moments further down the line attributabal to him. In fact, if he'd been found out, maybe we might've gotten a glimpse into a cybertronian execution, in the same veign as Spotlight:Arcee's jailhouse reimagining. Or something. Never mind.

Guidi's art was a miss as well, in my opinion. Don't get me wrong - his mecha's great, with a nice cartoon feel to it, and Hound ripping Soundwave's head right off had a Rambo-simple giddyness to it. Mirage's regeneration scenes were great full pagers, with nice scenery. But it needed more of that kind of thing, diversity - specifically in environment. For most of the issue, it was mecha jostling in corridors, if the corridors even got a look in. Probobly the script's fault, mind.

Ah well. Grimlock to look forward to, eh?

inflatable dalek
2008-03-08, 06:58 PM
Actually, did anyone else find the huge regeneration chamber a bit odd? It's hard to quantify as there's nothing to directly contradict it, but for me the normal IDW portrayal of the Autobots desperate scrounging poor Energon substitutes didn't seem to gel with the visual.

2008-03-08, 07:17 PM
I guess - it probobly would've been more realistic if it'd been like a slightly run down drip feed machine. Mind you, it was the only thing that really impressed in the whole spotlight...

Or what about just a tube in the floor? It worked for Senior/Galvatron...

2008-03-08, 10:15 PM
Nice art/colours, story was going-through-the-motions. Not really enough to fill the pages, no surprises except for the zodiac energy references. The Autobots are in remarkable condition considering that's the last of them (and why does everyone have Earth modes if this is the final gasp of the war? TBH Peace was a sharper look at things twenty years ago.) Somewhat short on characterisation for everyone except Mirage, and not as fun as Ramjet.


2008-03-09, 02:49 AM
Spotlight: Mirage is absolutely beautiful. Large panels with excellent lighting and crisp coloring make this a work of art. The character designs are especially nice. I love the Romanesque features of Mirage, showing his elitist background. As far as the plot is considered thought, it's sub-par. The whole dreaming theme is a bit sloppy. I also loved how Hound ripped off Soundwave's head, then a few panels later, his head in on top of his body in a puddle of some liquid (energon?). It made me laugh.

2008-03-09, 04:27 PM
i think the best way to read this book is thus
completely ignore everything and place it as a made up dreamstate and only see the two shots of him in a regen chamber as being real

so the info we have is thus

mirage was wounded or captured and placed in a regen chamber of somekind by someone unknown

doesnt add a thing to the overall story but there ya go

2008-03-12, 02:19 PM
I found this to be something of a waste of Guido's considerable talents on a stupifyingly bad story.
Still, points for trying something new.

2008-03-13, 04:32 AM
I liked it, after I let it sink in. It was too separate from the regular stuff for me to have a good first impression.

I don't think it was a dream. I think it was an actual alternate universe, which made me wonder if that universe turned out so different because Mirage became a Decepticon. Small things can make big changes to the outcome. He did seem a little too evil, but the end of the war was right there in his grasp. That was what he always wanted. One final act would end it. Not too out of character in my opinion.

As far as his altmode--he is Mirage. He can electro-disrupterer it to make it look like anything he wants, for six minutes anyway. :) Why not have something fast?

2008-04-04, 02:04 PM
I have read this, now. And read it again (meh, I have two copies, one with the B&W cover, call me a whore). Then I thought about it and read it again...

It's that zodiac energy thing, isn't it? It's that parallel mirrorverse idea. There are two Mirages, one of whom starts the narrative ('our' version) and one who ends it (mirror version). 'Our' Mirage revisits the events his mirrortwin experienced leading up to the moment they faced each other through the zodiac stream, which makes the majority of the narrative, and ending with the mirror 'Mirage' living in 'our' world. The two identical scenes of Mirage lying injured are the triggers and there is no narrative conventuality, because the Mirages are both damaged and in CR.

Um. Well, that's where I am to date. I think...