2019 Ongoing IDW Comics Thread

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ZakuConvoy

Well-known member
Citizen
I actually did like the Bumblebee/Cliffjumper relationship, too...but I can't help wondering if it wouldn't have worked better with either Bumper or Hubcap. Fans actually DO remember and like Cliffjumper, if only from the cartoon. I don't know if anyone has any strong feelings about those other two guys. Although, they could always have all these types of guys join a support group together. "We're not Bumblebee and that's okay." "I might not be Bumblebee, but I'm the Best me I can Be."


And, I'll admit I didn't touch on the Mentor system...because it kind of disappears after the first 10 issues or so. Not a bad idea, but I feel like it only really existed to give Bumblebee a reason to join the Decepticons. We don't really see "new" Transformers very often, so I guess a Mentor system probably just wouldn't come up very much is the problem.

And...no, I don't think they ever did explain why Bumblebee was expelled from the Security Corps before the series started. I'll admit, I might be forgetting something, though.

Mine would simply be "write issues." Clearly, he was writing for a trade mostly and that's not the end of the world, but you should still write individual issues as chapters at least that end on the last page. Some of Ruckley's issues felt like they finished mid-sentence.
That's a good point, too. Ruckley never really mastered the art of the cliffhanger. A good end-of-issue page should leave readers saying "oh no, it's ending HERE?!" not "oh...this is where it stops?" Too often, Ruckley's issues just end with a conversation, I think.
 

UndeadScottsman

Well-known member
Citizen
Your right that the mentor system doesn't come up a bunch because new protoforms are exceedingly rare in this continuity. IIRC, we only see the flashbacks to Bumblebee/Cliffjumper, then Rubble and finally Gauge. Though we do have Starscream's mentor referenced in the Halloween special, as well as Termagax and Codexia for Megatron and Prime. There were a couple of others as well.

IIRC, Bumblebee getting ejected from the Security Corps was specifically a ruse to give him credibility when he joined the Ascenticons.
 

Johnny Here

New member
Citizen
This is my favorite continuity next to Beast Wars and Beast Machines


Loved seeing Cybertron society, and a story that took itself serious
It goes downhill once the war starts but I loved everything before that

Sad to see it go and we'll probably never see anything Ike it again
 

Xaaron

Member
Citizen
If the choices were for IDW to lose the license in 2019 or to have this run, I'm glad we had this run.

Like most everybody has said, the first year was a slog to get through. I didn't become engaged until the Nautica solo issue. More of an every complaint, but you can tell how much the cast was being limited to Current or Recent Product. There were some...questionable...art choices over the years.

Overall, though, I really enjoyed it. IDW2 won't be my favorite continuity, but it made an effort. I'm pleasantly surprised how they created a complex political environment before the war that was so different from IDW1. In a bubble, I think it's the absolute best story about how the war between the Autobots and Decepticons began. Most of the time, we get one scene in a cartoon or one flashback in a comic that sets the stage, but this series actually put in the work. And while the depth of history in IDW1 was better, IDW2 was able to deliver a linear story showing the breakdown of government and society, rather than a mosaic of flashbacks told over a decade of comics.

For individual characters, I immediately found this Pyra Magna 1000% more compelling that the original. She was written with gravitas, a mix of certainty and regret that was immediately distinguishable from any other figure. Show don't tell, and they showed how she would develop such a strong following with just a few small scenes. I enjoyed other characters here and there: this version of Skywarp, Flamewar (in small doses), Smokescreen...but I'll admit there weren't many others I'll remember from this continuity.

There were some oddities with the presentation sometimes. Like, a weird question I found myself asking repeatedly was, "Is Sixshot supposed to be good at his job?" Some times they really seemed to be talking him up, and other times he caved easily or made what seemed to be basic mistakes. Similar question about the Wreckers' effectiveness, too. "We're really bad at being covert!" Oh, um...ha HA?

Anyway, I would have liked to see it progress more, but I'm not going to miss this continuity as much as IDW1. Good effort, though.
 

Salt-Man Z

that is not dead which can eternal lie
Citizen
Anyway, I would have liked to see it progress more, but I'm not going to miss this continuity as much as IDW1. Good effort, though.
IDW2 really suffered in comparison to IDW1, which is pretty much the crown jewel of TF fiction at this point (and I don't see how it can be topped, given the current state of tie-in comics and TV.)
 

UndeadScottsman

Well-known member
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IDW1 had the benefit of being around for ages, like 13 years, frequently with multiple series running concurrent. I think I counted over 400 issues for IDW1, compared to like a fifth of that for IDW2. When you've put that many issues out, you're going likely have some real bangers (as well as some real stinkers). Even Marvel US G1/G2 had less than a quarter of the issues as IDW.

Also remember it took over 6 years to go from the start of Infiltration to get to the Death of Optimus Prime, and half of that time was stuck in the All Hail Megatron/TF Ongoing era which I don't think is anyone's favorite. And even once MTMTE/RID arrive, they only get about four and a half years before the Hasbro Shared Universe starts muscling in kind of hobbles the story for a couple of years before they just ended the whole thing.

IDW1 is my favorite TF fiction, but it's has some major weak spots owing to the fact that it was a long running continuity with a LOT of different cooks in the kitchen.
 

DoubleClutch

it's EPIC, in MY mind...
Citizen
I think IDW2 just happened too soon after IDW1. (I'm sure there were timetables for licensed material having to have some development or use or it is lost, much like they do with movie sequels) The characters and personalities that were fleshed out (some not so much) in the first run were still fresh and present in the mind. The comparison was going to happen anyways, but with the release of IDW2 happening so soon it kind of felt to me like if I enjoy this then I am somehow discounting or betraying what came before. That and they Killed BrainStorm right off...
 

Salt-Man Z

that is not dead which can eternal lie
Citizen
IDW1 is my favorite TF fiction, but it's has some major weak spots owing to the fact that it was a long running continuity with a LOT of different cooks in the kitchen.
I think a lot of IDW1's success came about precisely because it ran for so long. Yes, Roberts and Barber are absolute legends, but their work (and Barber's in particular) was so rich often because it had so much backstory to draw upon (regardless of said backstory's quality!) Heck, even in Marvel G1, #70 gets much of its impact from the fact that Ratchet and Megatron had kept crossing paths for over 5 years at that point. The massive Star Wars Legends continuity was the same way: sure, some of it sucked, but it still informed the characters and gave them decades of depth. Longevity can iron out a lot of wrinkles.
 

UndeadScottsman

Well-known member
Citizen
I just realized... is this the first major continuity that had zero stories involving Earth or humans? Even Beast Machines was tied to G1/BW where Earth was prominent.
 

Dvandom

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They might've reached Earth eventually, but given Ruckley's preferred pacing we'd have needed another 20 years. Of course this year was like reading the summary, going from too-slow pacing to too-fast pacing with precious few issues with good pacing.

Ruckley comes from prose novels. Maybe he can pitch the full story to Hasbro as a series of novels.

---Dave
 

Swerve

Life of the Party
Citizen
So what happens to IDW created characters like Drift, Rubble, Nautica, Nickle, or Geomotus (to name a few)? I mean Drift has appeared in other media and toys, but someone like Geomotus has only appeared in 2019 continuity.
 

UndeadScottsman

Well-known member
Citizen
So what happens to IDW created characters like Drift, Rubble, Nautica, Nickle, or Geomotus (to name a few)? I mean Drift has appeared in other media and toys, but someone like Geomotus has only appeared in 2019 continuity.
Typically if they appeared first in a licensed comic, they're owned by the licenser, so if Hasbro or whoever making their shows or comics wants to use them, they can.

Remember Rung and Nautica have already gotten toys and Tarn is getting one next year. (After showing up in Cyberverse)
 

Andrusi

Lun!
Citizen
On one hand, as UndeadScottsman says, the expectation would be that Hasbro would own the characters, and as far back as the eighties they've apperently had the foresight to make this explicit in their contracts (thus Circuit Breaker randomly making an appearance in Some Other Thing before making her proper debut in Transformers, so she could be technically not "from Transformers").

On the other hand who's to say James Roberts's contract wasn't destroyed in a warehouse fire
 

UndeadScottsman

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The fact that Marvel did that and then proceeded to do jack all with Circuit Breaker in the intervening years sucks.

There was literally a comic about robot Avengers (Avengers AI) that she would have made a fantastic villain for. Just replace GB Blackrock with Tony Stark and Shockwave with Ultron in her origin and she's good to go.
 

SHIELD Agent 47

Active member
Citizen
So what happens to IDW created characters like Drift, Rubble, Nautica, Nickle, or Geomotus (to name a few)? I mean Drift has appeared in other media and toys, but someone like Geomotus has only appeared in 2019 continuity.
I am not privy to the details of Hasbro's legal contracts, but the understanding they generally effect is that anything IDW did for Hasbro was done under licence, and thus Hasbro owns all the story details, unlike in the 1980s where Hasbro had to allow Marvel to own some of their original creations, namely Circuit Breaker.

It is annoying that even in 2022, some people still get to hear the myth that Cartoon Network partially owns the Transformers Animated cartoon.
 

UndeadScottsman

Well-known member
Citizen
Circuit Breaker is the exception that proves the rule. She would have been a Hasbro character, but the comic writer liked her so much that he pre-emptively premiered her in Secret Wars II #3 before she showed up in the Transformers comic, just so Marvel would own the rights. This is why IDW was able to use G.B. Blackrock in their books.
 

Mat-Man

New member
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And I believe the same is also true of Death's Head, if I'm not mistaken? He appeared in a one or two page story before he showed up in Transformers...an "Old West" style story the name of which escapes me...
 

Dvandom

Well-known member
Citizen
Yes, Death's Head showed up in a short piece prior to appearing in TF UK, specifically so Marvel wouldn't have to give him to Hasbro. And that's a character they've done quite a bit more with.

---Dave
 

Cradok

Active member
Citizen
Overall, I liked IDW2. Yes, it had some pretty bad pacing issues at times, and there's a lot of stuff in there that starts up and then goes nowhere (I wonder how much of that was intentional, and how much was reactionary to feedback), but there's so much new stuff that I don't really mind, and we see the start of the war in a way that's never been done before. We usually drop in after the violence has already started, and IDW1's pre-war was a complete cluster (so was most of the war, and a lot of the post-war, for that matter...). I liked that anyone could appear, and that so many new characters were created. Because of Covid, I ended up with a backlog of about 20 issues when the cancellation was rumoured, so decided to re-read the whole series at once, and it works really well like that.

A lot of the non-Ruckley stuff was poor, though. I've been wanting a comic like Galaxies for a long time, an ongoing anthologyish book, where various authors and artists can just do a couple of issues. Unfortunately, it launched badly, fell down constantly until Covid basically killed it off. The Constructicon arc was okay, but opening with an artist as divisive as Ramondelli was probably a mistake. Cliffjumper's story was good, Arcee and Greenlight's was okay but basically did nothing, and the Magnus one... was there? Wreckers was a good twist on the format, a team of trouble-shooters disguised as a performance troupe, but the actual writing was bad.

Overall for IDW's output, I'd put it below MtMtE/RiD Season 1 and Infiltration-Maximum Dinobots, and clearly ahead of every other era (with the caveat that parts of the bits below it, Last Stand for example, are above it, but the eras as a whole are below). I'm sorry to see it go.
 
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