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Transformers #8 (2023) review

The war continues!

That’s right! With Robert Kirkman’s Void Rivals having launched Skybound’s new Energon Universe, noted writer/artist rolled-into-one Daniel Warren Johnson takes the reins on the linchpin of this new initiative, a brand-new Transformers comic series! Well, he maintains the reins on the writing of this series at least, as does Mike Spicer on colors. Jorge Corona takes over regular penciling duties with a style that barely misses a step from DWJ’s previous efforts.

In this eighth issue, the Autobots and Decepticons reunite with old comrades on both Earth and Cybertron as Carly and Spike still struggle with their place in the conflict.

How’s this “new” creative team doing?

Plugging along, although Jorge Corona’s humans are a lot more exaggerated than DWJ’s were. His robots too for that matter, but it kinda works better for them than it does for the humans. As far as writing goes, DWJ does well with character moments, although if you actually like the direction these characters are going in is a different story. There’s a lot of focus on Carly in this issue in particular, and while her beef with Cliffjumper is understandable, her acting out about it gets a little over-dramatic here.

On the Decepticon side of things, there’s some welcome development into Thundercracker, and we’re introduced to a new (well, to this continuity) Decepticon when the bad guys move into their new home. It’s definitely a new take on an old guy, and it’ll be interesting to see where this leads in the future when Soundwave and the rest are reunited with Megatron.

So where’s this headed now?

I… don’t know, really. I know we’re in for some crossover between most of the Energon Universe books soon, but I’m unsure if this story arc is leading to that or something else. If anything, the events of this issue make me even less charitable towards the opening premise of the Duke book, where it is claimed that public knowledge of the Transformers has been covered-up somehow. I just don’t see how that’s possible with the Autobots hanging out in clear view of civilians and the Decepticons launching very large attacks on human military.

Alright, then cubify us!

Honestly, my interest takes a downturn in the overall plot here as several things happen that didn’t really add up to me, from Skywarp’s sudden cooperation with the Autobots to Carly’s erratic behaviour. I guess we’ll have to see where DWJ’s going with this, but right now I felt a little underwhelmed. At the very least, Thundercracker’s characterization seemed dead-on, even if we’ve seen this potential arc for him before in IDW’s comics.

Buy Transformers # 8 this week or Carly will blow you up.

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