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Old 2016-07-28, 06:32 AM   #22
inflatable dalek
Duke of Kidderminster
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Kidderminster UK

I'm surprised so many people are saying there are ass pulls here, I think just about every plot device used in this story was established in advance. In some case, years in advance (not intentionally in some cases of course, but prior moments are used well to make it work). To take the one m'learned friend Warcry mentions...

Originally Posted by Warcry View Post
Megatron has Trailbreaker's forcefield thingy! Which was never hinted at!
Except when he was holding Trailbreaker's forcefield hand after he died in what we were clearly meant to think was a touching moment of grief (and probably was, what I love about this is as genuine as Megatron is he's also paranoid enough to make sure he's crazy prepared), grabbing the briefcase show's he's keen to half inch any thing that might be useful as well.

Megatron can use his black hole connection for a power source! Which was never hinted at!
Mentioned as a rumour about Megatron in the very first solo comic Roberts wrote, and brought up by Ratchet (who was paranoid about it) early in season 2. So the truth seems to be he's been trying a long time to crack it, but it's only post the work Shockwave did on him that provided a breakthrough and he just needed an anchor and a lot of concentration to achieve it. Along with a few mentions (mainly one from Ravage) about Megs sitting alone in his room and meditating a lot. Megs stomach cramps through the story are explained now as well.

Plus, it's a Tec Spec power! With visual callback to a thirty year old story! You should love that Mr. "Wither the Reak Skids?"

Rewind found a magic guilt weapon! Because why bother writing a couple more panels of dialogue showing Deathsaurus and Nickel coming to their senses when a deus ex machina will do?
The guilt weapon that brought them all to the planet in the first place, the plot device that got them into this mess helping to get them out of it is fairly solid symmetrical writing, and it's actually annoying me that it didn't occur to me to me sooner that would be an option.

The Necrobot has Brainstorm's time machine! Which was never hinted at!
Apparently (and I've forgotten it) I guessed the briefcase had been hidden on Necroworld so it must have been hinted somewhere! And the Necrobot's "portable apothecary" was mentioned way back in issue 30.

You can use a single briefcase as a time machine! Which goes against the whole previously described concept of the thing!
Now I'd agree that's a stretch, I'm happy to allow the Necrobot has access to crazy advanced tech and so could have made it work with his already basically magic teleport system, but it could perhaps have done with a line.

After years of buildup and hints, Tarn turns out to be...some random background guy! Even though that guy had a completely different superpower and zero motivation for joining the Decepticons!
I think it worked for the excellent bait and switch, ultimately (and Tarn told us himself!) his past life really didn't matter. It's also a variation on the heroes of other stories theme that's been a recurring one throughout MTMTE, the one where two characters we don't know got a eulogy post Overlord and two other fellows sorted the Personality Ticks before Nightbeat. This is the villainous variant.

It was really about Ratchet and Megatron getting their lost friends (and some other guys!) back.

Roller and Terminus and a bunch of other nobodies are magically alive! Because all the Necrobot needed to convince him to change the life he'd been devoted to for millions of years was one self-absorbed lecture from Nightbeat!
After what was probably the only conversation the Necrobot had had in centuries though.

I think the only really valid complaints for ass pulls (though they don't hugely bother me) are Overlord deciding to leave--though of course he knows the GC are going to blow up the planet if things aren't sorted soon and so has a motive to run and not tell a bunch of people he doesn't care about once the super forcefield went up and it clearly wasn't going to be over soon-- so he can be in stories another day (Springer is going to be so high on his list for a word) and the forcefield around the Necrobot's palace itself. Otherwise, every blooming thing was foreshadowed in some way or another, either on purpose or Roberts looking through old issues and going "Ahhh, that's a thing I can build on here a lot".

I think you could argue that after Dying of the Light was pushed as a story casual passing buyers could jump in for it's somewhat unfair on them as it's really a grand finale that depends on not only having read but paid attention, but as what's basically the last issue that's fair enough.

And AHO was far more accessible and far bloody worse (though in fairness the final part was more solid, it just floundered in the middle badly).

On the Hasbro mandate slowing ruining things side... Hard to argue that's not a very strong worry, especially if we get more toy promotions and "Hasbro Shared Universe" crossovers. If outside constraints force LL (and OP) into being much worse comics that will be a shame, but I think MTMTE managed to keep its head above the parapet and at the end was probably the most consistantly good TF comic we've ever had, with the best of it being genuinely some of the best stuff I've ever read. And the worse (hello Indie Disco! Actually, in terms of criticisms I don't think I said that playing of Tarn's theme last issue really didn't work at all for the same reason the disco didn't, comics are a mute medium!) never being less than very solid.

If you don't want to kill characters then don't, but don't constantly pretend like you're going to, then back out at the last second while going "ha ha, fooled you!"
Whilst I agree with you that has been a problem, most recently with Cyclonus when Tailgate went odd, I don't think that applies here does it. Allowing for the fact the Megatron cliffhanger was very obviously meant to make you think "So who's really shooting?" rather than "OGM MEGS IS DEAD!" (and of course, the actual reveal did subvert that expectation of it being someone running to the rescue) I don't think there was a single "HE'S DEAD!...ohhh...wait he's not" moment. Lots of "Are they going to die???!" moments but nothing where you think the axe has actually fallen.
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