Transformers Spotlight: Doubledealer (Revelation Part 3)

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zigzagger
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Transformers Spotlight: Doubledealer (Revelation Part 3)

Post by zigzagger » Fri Aug 15, 2008 3:22 pm

Double the pleasure, double the fun...with Spotlight: Doubledealer! Makes teeth brighter and smiles wider. This is your all purpose Spotlight: Doubledealer reaction and discussion thread.

Due to arrive the 20th of August along side All Hail Megatron #2 according to grahamcrackers.com shipping schedule.
http://www.grahamcrackers.com/newcomics.htm

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Blackjack
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Post by Blackjack » Tue Aug 19, 2008 9:23 am

This is me hoping this issue will have more action.

If only Infiltration and Escalation had this kind of pace... Not too slow, and not too fast. They don't squeeze too much new plots and dead ends in here. (ever read War and Peace?)

:up: Doubledealer's hawk mode would be excellent to see.

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Post by Drivaaar » Tue Aug 19, 2008 5:39 pm

Blackjack wrote:This is me hoping this issue will have more action.

If only Infiltration and Escalation had this kind of pace... Not too slow, and not too fast. They don't squeeze too much new plots and dead ends in here. (ever read War and Peace?)

:up: Doubledealer's hawk mode would be excellent to see.
I wouldn't get your hopes up on seeing his hawk mode I'm afraid...

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Post by zigzagger » Thu Aug 21, 2008 12:56 am

As Revelation continues at its neck breaking speed, it becomes more and more evident that this was meant to part of something larger, or more drawn out. At least one additional issue for Revelation would have given this story some much needed breathing space. Many plot strands from the previous 2 or so years, though finally finding some much needed cohesion, are simultaneously making a mad dash to the finish line. So frenzied that Doubledealer himself is less the focal point than were Cyclonus or Hardhead in the previous issues. Poor Furmlock - it seems that you will always be destined to wrap-up your stories this way. We don't blame you.......entirely ;) Unfortunately, because of this, this is perhaps the weaker (in contrast) of the Revelation Spotlights.

Of course, it isn't a failure by any means. It maintains the pacing and excitement established from the last two issues, and regardless if he has been sidelined here, the title character does receive some exposition, with Dealer telling his tale through the usual inner monologue. Though, in this case, it almost seems as if it was tacked on at the last minute in order to bear the Spotlight handle. Doubledealers story, to me anyway, felt incidental in conjunction to something far bigger and important. Though the Dead Furmanverse story is meant to be the overarching threat, Spotlights Hardhead and Cyclonus placed a bit more value upon the title character's role in the grander scheme of things. It just wasn't quite the case here. Doubledealers' story just didn't seem all that important. Though, he certainly got what was coming to him in the end, and at least the Magnificence plot-strand actually receives the opportunity to wrap itself up rather than being lost in the shuffle or outright ignored.

Upon first reading, a 3.5 out of 5. Though, as always, I'll probably change my mind upon subsequent readings, but it still wasn't bad. Honest.

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Post by Commander Shockwav » Thu Aug 21, 2008 1:03 am

Poor, poor Simon.

Here is when you know the guy was pulling his hair out (if he had any) after having to suffer wrapping up a two year arc in four issues.

Speeding up the pace worked great the last two issues.

Here, we just get a jumbled manic mess, a mad dash to tie up loose threads any way we can, ala Transformers Marvel #80.

But you know what? It would still have been rather good had the art not been some of the worst I've seen since Megatron:Origins. Khanna only adds to the 'jumbleness', if that's even a word.

This story is also full of plot devices. The Magnificence is a glorified Bat-computer (you know, the one from the 70's Batman show that spit out the answer to every conceivable question). Who knows what the hell The Darkness is? Oh, and throw the Matrix in their too! Here comes Bludgeon, as if there weren't enough bots running around as it is.

Jumble, jumble, jumble.

Ah well, it was expected, wasn't it?

Take nothing away from Simon, the guy is performing brain surgery with a toothpick here. And actually pulling it off, for the most part.

Again, had Nick or Guido or Don pencilled this, I guarantee that, despite the manic pitch of this issue, it would have been a pretty good comic. It's just that the characters, like Nemesis Prime, looked so very stumpy and silly drawn as they were.


I think the thing that bothers me most about what's going on is the fact that all of the major bigwigs of Transformers lore are crammed into this tale as puppets and pawns with no chance for real characterization.

I mean, if you want to use Straxus or Sixshot or Thunderwing, why just have them all in there for us to just look at and say "Oh look, there's such and such".

I mean, they say hardly a word, carrying out menial tasks like digging Energon holes and guarding caves.

Again, I think this is a result of Simon being forced to wrap this up. I bet my bottom dollar if he knew it would end like this, he would have waited to use these guys in a way more befitting their status.

To be honest, I wish Straxus, Sixshot, Jhiaxus,etc. etc had been replaced by mindless generic drones of Nemesis Prime, thusly leaving these bigwigs for greater future tales down the road, a chance for them to get the attention these TF legends deserve.

Give it a "C+". Feeling the pinch here as we wind down at a manic pace.

Despite that, kudos to Simon again, for working magic here without so much as a wand or rabbit.

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Post by Rossum » Thu Aug 21, 2008 3:39 pm

I really wish it had been Spotlight: Somebody Else, because the DoubleDealer-Hot Rod story didn't need nearly as much space as it got. I could see it if there were more issues to spare maybe, but with so many other big things are going down, it seems a waste. Nemesis Prime starting his high noon showdown with Optimus felt especially anti-climactic, since it was just crammed in there with everything else.

At least we're all on the same page about what the Dead Universe crew is up to, and we got to see a few more of them in action.

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Post by Starfield » Fri Aug 22, 2008 1:24 pm

So the Magnificence's special power is the ability to move the plot along at ludicrous-speed? Who knew?

I didn't quite get why Doubledealer asked if they could just fly to the top of the mountain. Either he was talking about a shuttlecraft just off-panel, or he slipped up and forgot Hot Rod didn't have a Decepti-condor altmode. :D

I agree that it was horrible to see big-names play parts that should go to lackeys.

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Post by Potatobot » Fri Aug 22, 2008 4:18 pm

Starfield wrote:So the Magnificence's special power is the ability to move the plot along at ludicrous-speed? Who knew?

I didn't quite get why Doubledealer asked if they could just fly to the top of the mountain. Either he was talking about a shuttlecraft just off-panel, or he slipped up and forgot Hot Rod didn't have a Decepti-condor altmode. :D

I agree that it was horrible to see big-names play parts that should go to lackeys.
i thought about that too but most likely he was talking about some sort of shuttlecraft.
maybe if they had made the mountain look a bit bigger in the first shot it would have made a bit more sense visually

i wonder if the magnificence ever comes up with the answer, "ask again later"
and if you have to shake it before asking

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Post by Starfield » Fri Aug 22, 2008 6:56 pm

A couple more thoughts...

Hot Rod should be able to find Sunstreaker easy now.

What's Jazz, Ratchet, Wheeljack, Bumblebee, and the humans up to? R&R I assume. When we see Jimmy and Verity next they will probably be A-OK and married with a couple of kids.

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Post by StoneCold Skywarp » Fri Aug 22, 2008 7:38 pm

Whilst I enjoyed the issue on the whole, I share zigzagger's views.

Doubledealer was always a favourite character of mine and the double agent view was always well used, then for him to turn into, basically, Swindle when he decided banzai-tron wasn't worth the hassle was quite awesome.

However I have issue with Khanna's art in this one. His characters stand out too much, thinking in particular of Optimus going to meet Nova, there's a red hue around Optimus which makes this even worse.
And when did Hot Rod start working out his neck muscles (servos, whatever) to the point where they were bulging!? I'm all for detailed art, but for detailed art to work then the machine around it must be sleek. To my eyes it looked like Hot Rod had been on a McDonalds diet but someone forgot to tell his neck.

It's a shame this is such a rush-job, but then conversely the argument could be made that the pacing throughout the series has been poor.

Shame AHM #2 was ****ing rubbish.
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Post by Starfield » Fri Aug 22, 2008 8:54 pm

StoneCold Skywarp wrote:...there's a red hue around Optimus ...
Yea. I thought that was supposed to be there. A dead universe shield or something.

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Post by AndyTurnbull » Sat Aug 23, 2008 12:13 pm

Thoroughly enjoyable cosmic tosh from Furman but it needed a better artist than Dan Khanna. Someone like Nick would have been a better fit for the book. and I agree with the points about the overly chunky Hot Rod. Looking at his earlier takes by E.J. and Nick he is fairly lean and that seemed in short supply.

Some curious panel choices made for some dramatic scenes coming across as a bit leaden.

Really looking forward to the next Spotlight though.

Andy

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Post by Halfshell » Sat Aug 23, 2008 2:42 pm

Have to echo what's been said already, really.

Good enjoyable plot-advancing stuff that gives plenty of answers and resolution.

The "central character"'s role perspective was easily lost in the shuffle and Khanna's artwork was... well, let's just say lacking, shall we? Could have done with an extra one/two issues to let stuff breathe a little / have time to sink in.

All that fuss for a magic eight ball? ;)

Not sure Hot Rod needed a redesign for Ki-Aleta, nor how Jhiaxus gained control of Bludgeon (though hopefully that'll get Revelated next time).

Nice to have a name put to the planet at the beginning of Arcee, and an explanation for why Galvatron needed to protect Earth (and a great tie-in back to the very first Spotlight).

A few other thoughts knocking about, but I want a re-read when my physical copy turns up before I comment on them properly.

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Red Dave Prime
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Post by Red Dave Prime » Sat Aug 23, 2008 6:06 pm

My forbidden planet (dublin)was sold out of this within a day! First time ever. So I'm crossing fingers the owner succeeds in getting me a copy. if he cant, would anyone recommend idws online store?

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Post by Denyer » Tue Aug 26, 2008 11:47 am

Might be easier/cheaper to try http://oneshallstand.com/comics1.html

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Red Dave Prime
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Post by Red Dave Prime » Tue Aug 26, 2008 10:13 pm

Thanks. They dont have Spotlight Kup but this will sort me with the Double Dealer issue (which is the one I really want)

Much Cheers :)

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Post by Denyer » Tue Aug 26, 2008 10:39 pm

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll? ... 0241181705

^Kup. Slightly inflated price, but is an incentive cover.

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Post by inflatable dalek » Wed Aug 27, 2008 8:27 pm

I'm expecting a lot of Bhul next issue.

The wheels haven't come off yet but the whole wagons wobbling in a very dodgy manner. We're now basically at the stage we were towards the end of Devastation, lots of things don't seem to make any sense or look like mistakes and we're reliant on the last issue clarifying everything. Which Devastation never did of course...

My main problem is the ease with which the Magnifigence can be used. Not only does this raise the question of why the Autobots who sent Hot Rod to retrieve it in the first place didn't order him to hand it over (can you imagine the more pragmatic Autobots of this continuity not suing an advantage like that?), you also have to wonder why he doesn't ask the obvious, "How do we stop the expansion and Nemesis Prime so he's over, finished?".

And when did Hot Rod start having these doubts about his friend? There's no indication of them in him inner monolouge back in his Spotlight

The time scale also seems off somehow, either the Wreckers have been fighting Thunderwing for a extremely long time or by an amazing coincidence all the planets and locations seen in this arc are right on top of each other cosmically speaking with everyone getting from one to the other in no time at all, not to mention Straxus and Genericon setting up a system for draining Earth (but yay, reason for Galvatron being bothered to stop the Reapers!) in about five minuets.

And how long can a Autobot science vessel hold of Cyclonus for?

My concerns about Optimus' sidelined role in the first two issues pretty much played out as well, the sudden attempt to throw him to the front and make him and Nemesis arch foes felt a bit forced and silly. Though for all that "There can be only one" style guff to make sense I guess he does have the Matrix after all then and that was a wrongly coloured Eviltrix we saw Nemesis with last issue?

I can't see the Pretenders, Bludgeon, half the Dead Universe cast or Sidewswipe actually contributing anything to the last issue that will make having them involved worthwhile.

Speculation corner: How many issues was this meant to be told in? At Auto Assembly when I told Furman how much I'd enjoyed the first two issues his response was "I'm pleased with how they turned out as well, I was initially worried about turning a six issue arc into four Spotlights" (I think he says something similar in that video podcast thing as well), which makes it sound as if everything seen here was originally still going to be in Revelation with Expansion perhaps following on with a different now abandoned storyline. That's only a loss of two issues, which when you consider there would have been likely inter cutting with the Earth/Machination stuff means we haven't lost a huge amount of story pages so it shouldn't feel that rushed should it?

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Post by Halfshell » Wed Aug 27, 2008 8:46 pm

inflatable dalek wrote:And when did Hot Rod start having these doubts about his friend? There's no indication of them in him inner monolouge back in his Spotlight
Well no, because he was all guilt-ridden back then. Returning to Ki-Aleta made him go over it again, realising there was a chance he'd been played. Dealer being so eager to find it probably helped matters.
Speculation corner: How many issues was this meant to be told in? At Auto Assembly when I told Furman how much I'd enjoyed the first two issues his response was "I'm pleased with how they turned out as well, I was initially worried about turning a six issue arc into four Spotlights" (I think he says something similar in that video podcast thing as well), which makes it sound as if everything seen here was originally still going to be in Revelation with Expansion perhaps following on with a different now abandoned storyline. That's only a loss of two issues, which when you consider there would have been likely inter cutting with the Earth/Machination stuff means we haven't lost a huge amount of story pages so it shouldn't feel that rushed should it?
I'm of the belief that Revelation and Expansion would also have included the events that'll transpire in Maximum Dinobots. Probably some Megatron-faction stuff too. He probably restructured it into Revelationy stuff and Dinoboty stuff, then had to restructure Revelation again into the four issues. Would be my guess.

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Post by Starfield » Thu Aug 28, 2008 3:03 am

inflatable dalek wrote: My main problem is the ease with which the Magnifigence can be used.
The real-world explanation is that the Magnificence was supposed to be a map, as far as I know. A very comprehensive map, but a map nonetheless. I was also (previously) given the impression that it would be difficult to extract the information from it, but a magic plot advancing device was needed, so *pow*.

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