Review: Transformers Annual 2017

IDW continues their annuals for 2017, and Optimus Prime delivers an extra-long tale of origins and a shocker of a conclusion which will likely become a main arc in the not-so-distant future.

The book starts off with Optimus Prime and Pyra Magna. The latter, part of the fan-voted IDW character combiner Victorion who has taken issue with some of the decisions made by our current Autobot leader on Earth. The two meet at the black hole. Not THE black hole, but the one created following the Dark Cybertron event last year. Additionally, Starscream and his hallucination-friend Bumblebee are also present to eavesdrop on the conversation.

Wait. Can a hallucination eavesdrop? If the owner of said hallucination is listening, then it would stand to reason the figment of his imagination is too… Right?

Anyway, the story is a two-fold tale, one focusing on Prime’s introduction to Bumblebee, the second, is the origin of Pyra Magna, and her motivation for believing herself to be an heir to the Autobot Matrix of Leadership. Both stories are very well crafted and succeed in pulling the reader in. These may appear to be one-offs, as many annual stories go for different publishers. Here, IDW writers created a story which may appear on the surface as a one-off tale, but the connections are quite deep. The transitioning conversations between Prime and Magna, as well as Starscream and Bumble-hallucin-bee are fluid, making the two tales seem connected.

The last page is a doozy. No spoilers here, but holy crap.

Artwork gets a level 10 awesome and the dialogue was near-perfect. A couple panels seemed repetitive and the drama-level in Pyra’s story might have been a bit much, but overall this annual is an entertaining and enlightening read for the IDW faithful.