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View Full Version : Maximum Dinobots. Was it really that bad??


relak
2012-05-29, 07:07 AM
Topic says it all.

I thought Max Dino was pretty decently recieved (judging from other forums). Not as good as LSOTW but at least better than AHM.

Only here do i see it taking some flak.
Not that i want to defend it, but maybe im missing something.

The only thing bad about it was 2 points
- The artist swapping and clashing art styles
- overly compacted story (would have been better over 6 to 8 issues instead of just 5)

Other than that, i found it a decent conclusion to the earth based section of the -tion saga, with an appropriately bittersweet ending and a decent narrative.

To me, The story of the dinobots and grimlock was a poignant "coming of age" tale: a group of frat boys who got together just cos they liked to smash stuff got a hard lesson in loyalty, duty and responsibility. Grimlock's was about the balance of "growing up" yet preserving his true nature that he has come to embrace.

Red Dave Prime
2012-05-29, 07:38 AM
While I do think it gets an overly hard bashing from some on here, it's hard to ignore the stupidity of the dinobots themselves over the 5 issues - "We hate Grimlock, We're friends with Grimlock. Swoops going, Now he's back". And speaking of stupidity only a true idiot would use the plan the humans did.

There's also the problem of Sludge being dead one minute and then Furman not being brave enough to follow it through and Ol' Sludge is back in action! That part feels really cheap.

I enjoyed Max Dinos as a bit of fun but the flaws in it are pretty glaring.

Cliffjumper
2012-05-29, 01:11 PM
Utter crap. In addition to RDP's criticisms above, I'd add that the Dinobots' interaction with each other reads like a bad Furmanite fanfic - it copies but it doesn't understand. The Monsterbots are lucky people were too busy laughing at Drift to realise they're exactly the same as him - they and other characters keep telling us how DARK and EDGY they are, but the actions don't follow; they in particular are like something out of a Liefield comic. The plot and dialogue was terrible all the way through.

It got overly praised on release as a knee-jerk to it not being AHM. Everything Transformers comics-wise gets ridiculously overpraised on release - dig around in the Junkion Files for the positive reception to the DW comics that are now punchlines. Hell, dig around the comics forum here for everything IDW did being praised on release.

I'm not exactly sure of the reason for this strange phenomenon is - rabid desire to prove fans aren't stuck in the past, forlorn hopes of being employed by said companies, the increased accessibility of creative teams meaning people bite their tongues (conversely, fans say what the Hell they like about Bay because there's no way they'll ever meet him at BotCon and the majority are far too fat and ugly to ever have a film career), Transformers' fans incredibly low standards or what... But the pattern of "praise on release, slag off heavily a year or two down the line in comparison with current releases" is very dominant in comic reception.

Knightdramon
2012-05-29, 01:20 PM
First off, I'm not sure who to blame [Furman or the editor at the time], but a scene that played out a certain way in AHM was played completely differently in MD. I'm talking about Hunter's\Sunstreaker's surgery and who woke first and who wants to see who.

Other than that, it read like a bad fanfic of somebody who loves dinobots. They attempt to overwhelm Grimlock with his four comrades who have the exact same code\brainwashing that Grimlock overcame the moment he regained consciousness.

There's much angst between the dinobots, that's dragged out over five issues, over not much. One of them goes, the others fight, he comes back on his own. Repeat and change minor details x 5.

Way too much stuff crammed in five issues. Monsterbots show up to bail out the bots and do NOTHING else, Shockwave is crammed in THE endgame subplot for Scorponok [that was built on since...Escalation? Two years prior], Ultra Magnus swoops in just to make some people happy...there's little point.

Basically, you could omit all four Dinobots, Shockwave, Magnus and the Monsterbots and keep more or less the exact same plot with just Hot Rod, Sunstreaker and Grimlock.

The clashing art is an eyesore as well. Both artists do a tremendous job on their own, but their styles, inks, not to mention DESIGNS are on the opposite ends of the spectrum. On one side you have Roche, with cartoony style bots, simplicity and fluidity being the key, followed by James Raiz, heavily inked, serious, busy mechanical designs. Their editor was so bad not even battle damage was kept the same.

TLB80
2012-05-29, 04:43 PM
First off, I'm not sure who to blame [Furman or the editor at the time], but a scene that played out a certain way in AHM was played completely differently in MD. I'm talking about Hunter's\Sunstreaker's surgery and who woke first and who wants to see who.

Wasn't that because McCarthy hadn't even heard of MD until he'd done AHM #9 or something like that?

inflatable dalek
2012-05-29, 07:49 PM
I'd disagree with some of the comments above and actually say the big killer problem is there isn't enough plot for five issues. After all, what happens basically boils down to "Everybody fights!", which is fine, but gets really dragged out here, hence all the comedy "I'm off! No, I am not" repetition. Either it should have been the four issue series or the Dealer stuff should have been dealt with here freeing up some space in Revelation to try and actually not be crap.

How silly Skywatch's actions were across all of Furman's run should be reitterated as well:

"Right, we'll track down the robots with these here seekers!

Oh, they've broken their programming and escaped. We'll send the T-rex to track them down and find the robots!

Oh, he's broken his programming and escaped. We'll send the other dinosaurs to track him down, track the seekers down and find the robots.

Oh, they've broken their programming and escaped. We'll send Shockwave to track them down, track the T-rex down, track the seekers down and find the robots.

Hang on a second, any of you other guys notice anything a bit suspicious here? Oh, and get that old woman to eat something else to catch that fly".

If nothing else, Costa at least wrote Skywatch entirely consistently.

It's a shame as it started off nice and fun, but by the time Swoop goes all emo in issue 2 (?) it begins to falter badly. Nice to see Raize on art again though.

Knightdramon
2012-05-30, 12:27 AM
Wasn't that because McCarthy hadn't even heard of MD until he'd done AHM #9 or something like that?

Could be, either way though, some editor somewhere down the line should have been able to identify that error early in the printing\drawing stage.

And yes, Skywatch was entirely comical in Furman's run. The guys fail, hard, each and every time.

relak
2012-05-30, 02:25 AM
"We hate Grimlock, We're friends with Grimlock. Swoops going, Now he's back".

There's much angst between the dinobots, that's dragged out over five issues, over not much. One of them goes, the others fight, he comes back on his own. Repeat and change minor details x 5.

I always interpreted this as evidence of the Dinobots' IDW portrayal as not a cohesive fighting team but a bunch of young punks who just all happen to like smashing stuff. This goes all the way back to Spotlight Shockwave and even that little scene in Megatron Origin.
They are children and war was a big game to them at first.
Compare it to kids playing soccer.
Isnt this similar to the "You left me on the bench that last game! I'm walking out bro". Yet before long the kid comes back and "ah what the heck, we've been playing altogether all this while, lets just play".

They never actually became "friends" with grimlock until the end when they fought for each other and not just because they wanted to smash stuff.


There's also the problem of Sludge being dead one minute and then Furman not being brave enough to follow it through and Ol' Sludge is back in action! That part feels really cheap.

I think the purpose of that scene was to show the first hint of Grimlock taking responsibility as a leader. Sludge died "because of me". Grimlock's personality in IDW is a "you break a leg, you're left behind" attitude.
IMO, the scene would have had a bigger impact if the "spark energy transfrer" or whatever GRim used to revive Sludge had a detrimental effect on Grimlock. Either serverely weakening him or trapping him in alt mode.
The point is, Grimlock finally sacrifices something of himself for the sake of another.
First off, I'm not sure who to blame [Furman or the editor at the time], but a scene that played out a certain way in AHM was played completely differently in MD. I'm talking about Hunter's\Sunstreaker's surgery and who woke first and who wants to see who.

I kinda chalked that up to being cos the flashback in AHM was from Sunstreaker's POV. Sunstreaker being sunstreaker and having the guilt of his betrayal weighing down on him, would naturally try to warp his perception of events to justify his betrayal.

Skywatch's plan

I always felt that both Skywatch and the Machination were parodies of the most common types of non-main character humans encountered in past TF fiction.
One is the incompetent government organisation who is determined to control transformers for their own purposes (ETRD, Japan's EDC, Sector Seven,) , the other is the privately owned "take over the world" uber rich company whose leader has a personal history with the TFs (GB Blackrock, RAAT, Lazarus).

So maybe Skywatch's continual failure IS meant to reflect badly on such unecessary human characters which still appear in TF fiction to this day (MECH in TF Prime)

Red Dave Prime
2012-06-03, 01:17 PM
Way too much stuff crammed in five issues. Monsterbots show up to bail out the bots and do NOTHING else, Shockwave is crammed in THE endgame subplot for Scorponok [that was built on since...Escalation? Two years prior], Ultra Magnus swoops in just to make some people happy...there's little point.

I always felt that Magnus should have been used in place of Rodimus, given that he is the one chasing Scorponok. And I'd agree that the Monstorbots was just wanting to have the cake and eating it writing. They really didnt serve a purpose.

Still, I think IDW has released far, far worse mini series into their G1 world.

Cyberstrike nTo
2012-06-03, 06:31 PM
Maximum Dinobots is one of the four worse comics series (the other 3 are Dragon Age: vol. 1, Transformers: Revelation, and Transformers: Heart of Darkness) I ever had the misfortune to ever read. Now I wasn't around when it and AHM were being published I picked up both series in TPB.

I hated everything about Maximum Dinobots the artwork sucked, and the story had way too much in it and I didn't care for any of it. Nothing made any sense (and yes, I read all the other TPBs before it) and quite honestly Furman crapped all over the story and in the end both Transformers: Revelation and Maximum Dinobots makes me ashamed of being both a Transfan and a comic book fan.

relak
2012-06-04, 01:11 AM
I always felt that Magnus should have been used in place of Rodimus, given that he is the one chasing Scorponok. And I'd agree that the Monstorbots was just wanting to have the cake and eating it writing. They really didnt serve a purpose.

Still, I think IDW has released far, far worse mini series into their G1 world.

Yea, like Heart of Darkness.

True on using Magnus instead, but i can't see Magnus getting trashed by Scorp the way Hot Rod did.

Red Dave Prime
2012-06-04, 02:28 AM
In defence of revelations: Spotlight Cyclonus is excellent and formed the basis for one of the lost lights more interesting characters. And Spotlight: Hardhead is probably the best "death" that IDW have done.

Than we get Double dealer and Sideswipe which are both cluster ****s. And we also see what happens when a writer just cant stop adding fluff to a plot that is already overloaded (along with focusing the final part of a near FIVE year build on a peripheral character who has no major impact, the Bludgeon addition just baffled me)

If I was to pick worse IDW minis than Maximum Dinobots -

Drift is pretty bland, Megatron:Origins is a right old mess (but does have some interesting ideas I suppose) , Heart of Darkness is a bigger mess with added terrible dialogue and the International Incident arc is like an episode from the 80's cartoon only less well thought out. But the worst?

That Bumblebee one was just mind numbingly bad. The art losses its charm rapidly. Characters and alt modes get changed from the main strip just because. And the sheer stupidity of it all. Those VR badges. The bit where a VW beetle is able to confuse the military. And the "revelation" of the new, bad-ass Bumblebee. It was all just terrible.

relak
2012-06-04, 05:59 AM
Red Dave, Maybe you should get a poll going.

Revelations DD and Sideswipe was just typical Furman (same with Max Dino's last issues). Cramming wayy to much into too little.
Like the direct opposite of Costa who draws out too little into too long.


And I'd agree that the Monstorbots was just wanting to have the cake and eating it writing. They really didnt serve a purpose.
Now that i re-read it, the Monsterbots seem there as a dark reflection of the Dinobots if the Dinobots carry on as they are; a bunch of misfits who got together to smash stuff.

Warcry
2012-06-05, 05:42 PM
The Monsterbots are lucky people were too busy laughing at Drift to realise they're exactly the same as him - they and other characters keep telling us how DARK and EDGY they are, but the actions don't follow; they in particular are like something out of a Liefield comic.
They're worse. Most of the anti-Drift flak came from the way he was marketted outside the story, and the perception that he was McCarthy's Mary Sue. But in-story Drift is just sort of there, the same as Tracks or Cliffjumper. No one bigs him up as this awesome renegade killing machine -- in fact, the other characters are more likely to shit on him this anything else, when they bother noticing him at all. If he'd shown up without all the silly fanfare, I doubt anyone would have cared. In fact, with the silly marketting failure in the rear-view mirror a lot of people (myself included) actually kinda like the guy.

The Monsterbot complaints all relate to what they did in the story -- acting like generic 90s anti-heroes, stealing the spotlight and adding absolutely nothing to the story, and 2/3s of them behaving nothing like their established characters -- and that's much worse.

Basically, you could omit all four Dinobots, Shockwave, Magnus and the Monsterbots and keep more or less the exact same plot with just Hot Rod, Sunstreaker and Grimlock.
In fact, that probably would have resulted in a much better story all around. None of the secondary cast added anything, which is probably the most stinging indictment of the whole thing -- the whole point of the story as per the title was Dinobots, but Scorponok, Sunstreaker and Hot Rod were more important characters.

There were a lot of other, smaller things wrong with it -- including Magnus was silly since he didn't show up until the story was over, 'killing' Sludge for cheap drama when they had no intention of going through with it, the complete and utter stupidity of Skywatch, and including Soundwave and Shockwave for no reason but to tie up loose ends -- but when the alleged stars of your story are pushed aside by other, more interesting characters and storylines it's obvious that something's gone very wrong.

inflatable dalek
2012-06-05, 07:38 PM
Isn't Magnus' role to go all Graham Chapman at the end and turn up to tell eveyone off for being so silly?

The various nods to Bond throughout the Furman run were generally fun for me (especially the lovely subtle Markham one), so having a character come out and not only directly quote the preface to Goldfinger but attribute it as well was rather too much like being hit over the head repeatedly whilst Furman shouted "GET IT!!!!! THERE ARE JAMES BOND HOMAGES IN THIS COMIC! LOOK, SCORPONOK IS CHRISTOPHER WALKEN!!!! but less fun than that sounds".