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Void Rivals #5 review

Oh, is this still happening?

Well obviously, you incomparable ignoramus! Void Rivals continues here with issue # 5. It’s Robert Kirkman, Lorenzo De Felici, and Matheus Lopes’ new sci-fi comic that tells the tale of two crumbling planets linked by a “Sacred Ring” (it’s not Halo), their peoples at war for generations. When a member of each culture are stranded together, the two find they must put aside their differences if they want to survive. This story takes place in the so-called “Energon Universe”, Skybound Entertainment’s new initiative to relaunch properties like Transformers and G.I. Joe within a shared universe that also happens to include the original characters and setting of Void Rivals.

Last issue, Darak and Solila found themselves both in Zertonian jail- Darak for being an enemy agent, and Solila for being suspected of showing sympathy towards him. Meanwhile, the Skuxxoid is still trying to unload his Quintesson prisoner, showing up on Cybertron and being rejected by Shockwave. Both of these plots continue to simmer in this issue.

Simmering plots eh? Are we at a boil yet?

This is a sort of transition issue to the next phase of Void Rivals’ larger plot, so while we’re still cooking, things aren’t quite “boiling point” yet. The main plot takes a turn here as Darak and Solila are individually introduced to new characters that will send them in different directions. The claustrophobic setting of the prison cell opens up into new claustrophobic settings for Darak as he is tortured and then rescued, while enigmatic figures from Solila’s past emerge to present her with a path forward. If there’s one thing the art does especially well here, it is capture the feeling of closed-in walls and dark moods. As mentioned, the Adventures of Skuxxoid continue as well, with a sign that his plot thread will tie back into Darak and Solila’s again soon.

Skuxxoid! That’s who I’m here for! He’s doing Transformers stuff, right??

Yep, his port-of-call in this issue is Transformers-adjacent. While Kirkman is still making sure that we know Void Rivals takes place in the ENERGON UNIVERSE, this issue’s check-in feels more tied into the main plot of his original characters at least.

So cube us.

This is the first issue of Void Rivals that hits in a post-Transformers # 1 Skybound world, so the question becomes “do I care about Void Rivals anymore now that I have Transformers back finally?” Honestly, the answer is “yes”- that I am still engaged by this new property… but I can’t deny that this issue is a bit of a cooldown in terms of exciting things happening. Like I said, the plot needs to reorient as our protagonists find themselves in a new arena, and next issue will likely give readers a better idea as to where Kirkman is going with this next.

The cube’s about here for this issue:

Pick up Void Rivals # 5 this week for some torture! I mean… in the actual story, not in the reading of the comic, of course! Heh.

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