Transformers Ongoing: Issue #9
Title: Lost and Found
Release date: October 2004
Cover variants: Regular (Don Figueroa)
Writer: McDonough & Patyk
Artwork: Don Figueroa (pencils) Elaine To (inks) Espen Grundetjern (colours)
Rating: Art / Story
Synopsis:By Ian Arrowsmith
Megatron has come back for his revenge and things do not look good for the vanquished Shockwave!
A lone empty (Cybertronian derelict) appears on the screen Blitzwing and Astrotrain are monitoring, Blitzwing wants to let the automatic defences take care of it; hearing this Shockwave enters. They discuss the finer points of letting the defences doing the dirty work for them, for one thing using them risks revealing their location. This is something that has to be taken of first-hand. Gone, the empty has disappeared. Now shockwave wants it located, all of them go out to search for their visitor.
Outside Blitzwing has located the suspect, curiously he goes to approach, and wonders in its state how it could have been walking around. Just then the "empty" grabs him tightly by the head. Reacting quickly Astrotrain transforms from his shuttle mode and blasts the attacker with his gun. As they clean up the mess, someone is watching them. Out from the shadows leaps a Predacon.
Shockwave is in the dark back at his headquarters, he doesn't know what's going on, and then the power fails. Moving to investigate he encounters Megatron.
Shockwave and Megatron. The same two dummies that Hot Rod has just toasted. But wheres Kup on this little practise session. The two duke it out physically and verbally, and in the end, Hot Rod wins, just. Hot Rod is supposed to be meeting up with Arcee anyway, but as Kup tells it Springer has already beaten him to it.
Arcee and Springer watch in contemplation as a shuttle prepares for launch and takes off. Those on board have a sense of purpose, that purpose being to help the earth. Prowl and the other Autobots on board will still miss Cybertron though.
On Quintessa of all places, the Qunitessons, are pleased that the Autobots forces are now split between earth and Cybertron, but what of their plans? They can take care of Hot Rod it seems, he has an affinity, but Arcee it appears can counteract this,
Jazz has finished up his business with the EDC (see issues 7 & 8) Wheeljack and the others are now being released. Their ride has arrived, its ratchet with the Orion. They all board and Ratchet begins to update Jazz, it's not very good. Elsewhere on earth Spike is riding with Bumblebee, another motorist passes, almost thinking that Spike is talking to himself. As they drive on the pair hear someone in distress, Spike goes to help, but is then caught unawares when a gun is pointed at them, Bumblebee chooses this point to step in, crushing the attackers gun between his fingers, he protects Spike.
Megatron and Shockwave, Megatron never shot to kill Shockwave only to neutralise him. Shockwave is now without his weapon arm. It is contained, if activated Shockwave will incinerate himself. Revealing his new and improved troops the Predacons, and the remainder of shockwaves forces, bar Blitzwing, Megatron is not stupid he's not attacking the Autobot's, he's going after the earth.
In this issue we finally see the fruits of McDonough's and Patyk's labours. All the story arcs and sub plots are beginning to come together all the while new ones are being formed (such as Bumblebee's escapades with Spike). With all the different story lines in place, the pace is just about right now. All the plotlines being entertaining and mysterious so that you don't know exactly what's coming next. This is one of the advantages with having a cast as diverse as the Transformers to work with. One character can be used and then left on a near cliff-hanger while other characters take central stage for a while instead. We still haven't seen so many of the other Transformers characters so it will be interesting when we finally do.
Don's art is almost spot on once again, with a few blips (like how chunky Megatron looks near the end) but otherwise it really is fine, especially his renditions (and the colourists) of Hot Rod it was good to finally see a whole load of bright colours used all at once in the comic at it not be due to an explosion.
The only problem with this issue is that it looks like it might be a bit harder for the casual reader to get on board the series as it refers to so much backstory, and this can be good for hardcore fans but quite hard on the casual reader. In all a good issue showing that things are getting better I hope they keep up this good work.