Optimus Prime #9
Again, props to Tom Whalen for the cover art this month. Classy.
This is another standalone story among featuring the Autobot Sideswipe. He has been encased in a regeneration chamber for some time, and now appears to be ready for the call to action.
Or so it seems.
Barber, Zama, and Burcham craft a sad tale of an Autobot who sought to find peace within himself, however his impulse to act based on past trauma often gets in the way. We watch the character time and again let old experiences impact judgment, until finally he sees the righteousness of everything before him. His shepherds on this journey are Arcee and his brother Sunstreaker. They seem to take no solace in what becomes of their old friend.
The result is from a few issues ago, when Arcee destroys a tool which may have been able to change the outcome. This aspect is not readily addressed, and it was not addressed fully in past issues, but more of passing comments. The conclusion of the tale, while sad, is satisfying, giving a Cybertronian hero a proper send off.
Optimus Prime #9 Rating: 10 out of 10 (and 5 out of 5 tears)
Optimus Prime #10
Sit down. Relax. Open your audio receptors and your imagination. Shift your eyes upon the ancient Cybertronian sage, Alpha Trion, and heat a tale of a Cybertron which was meant to be, a Cybertron which became, and a Cybertron which will be.
The story is told to Optimus Prime, Starscream, and Pyra Magna. To the readers as well. The story goes on of splintered factions and corrupt Primes, only for war to ignite which, in turn, produces an uneasy and dark truce which then unifies Cybertron.
Did you catch all that?
You see, it starts in an arena, where a pair of twins do battle to the death, because their leader decrees it. Guess what, these twins have names… Galvatron, and…
… Wait for it…
While your heads explode on that one, I’m moving on to avoid the splatter. A couple of Primes went rogue, and their armies take up arms for battle. But then, the war is waged with another villainous Prime at the front. When the two leaders meet on the battlefield, they suddenly stop everything and call a truce. This makes a few Primes uneasy, while another one seems to have drunk too much bad energon.
Stories can tell a lot, even if they are based on lies. This is the motto we are given, however this leads to the cliché of “More Than Meets The Eye.”
The lesson to be learned, is not all righteous deeds are as they seem, however despite the looming of treachery, a heroic goal can be reached.
Alpha Trion’s story will no doubt confuse us all, as is the liberty IDW has taken to this character, however this will likely be a clue into some interesting times.
Optimus Prime #10 Rating: 6.5 out of 10
Optimus Prime #11
No Optimus Prime here, this issue spotlights a band of Prime’s devout followers, and their subsequent journey to find a missing Autobot as well as flesh out their own concerns and misgivings about following The Prime.
The Prime has been a concept established by IDW has a prestigious title, but one marred in controversy and associated with violent and tyrannical rulers. Yep, in case you missed it, being a Prime associates you with an evil and treacherous past.
A micromaster whose partner was killed during the Junkion invasion is stuck between beliefs and reality, something which I feel mirrors our own reality. One can be devout and blindly follow, until tragedy strikes, opening eyes and awakening thoughts which only tragedy and reality can spark. While some doubt the mission, others do so out of loyalty to righteousness, but even righteousness has its pitfalls, as the band of followers soon learn.
Throughout the issue it appears various figures are interviewed, past characters and present are features, many not painting the Transformers in a positive light. One might think a major collaboration to remove or eliminate the Cybertronians is underway.
One common theme is clear. Optimus Prime is not viewed as the mighty hero anymore, now he is a figure of controversy and perhaps ill-perceived conquest.
The artwork overall was well done by the multiple artists featured in the issue.