Transformers #53 Review!

I must being this review by singing the praises of Pricilla Tramonano. Her art was the only good part of the recent Deviations issue, and it’s great to see her getting to work on other Transformers books.
Unfortunately, there is where many of my praises end. Barber thankfully consolidated many of his sides and factions so it’s not necessary to use a scorecard anymore, but the inconsistent portrayal of the characters—particularly Blackrock, is he a prisoner or what?—is starting to wear thin.
Additionally, Galvatron’s big master plan turns out to be the same crap that IDW did an entire failed event on AND used in the climax of the previously-mentioned awful Deviations issue. The third time is not the charm. I just can’t get excited about “slam five random characters together and call it a Combiner” anymore, and especially when the toy names for the Combiners are used but only two out of ten characters are actually in the Combiner Wars toyline. I recognize the difficulty involved in shuffling in the viable toy characters and how cringingly obvious that would be (as it was in the gathering of Optimus Maximus), but this feels like indulging Hasbro’s wishes while also giving them the finger.
I started off really excited about All Hail Optimus. Then it became increasingly confusing, and now it doesn’t seem to know where it’s going and is coasting on toy references. I’m more than a little concerned about how Titans Return might be handled in the comics.
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