Beast Wars (2021) ongoing series

"What? Transformers made from animals instead of vehicles and stuff? Doesn't sound so great, throw it to Kenner division, maybe they can make a quick buck or something."
Beast Wars, Machine Wars, Beast Machines... seeing a pattern? Coming soon: "Wars Wars"
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andersonh1
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Re: Beast Wars (2021) ongoing series

Post by andersonh1 »

Ursus mellifera wrote:
Thu Dec 09, 2021 5:43 am
Aren't there only 2 issues left in this whole series?
I think if sales are good enough it was going to go beyond issue 12. But it's a good point, if there are only two issues left, I may as well stick with it until the end at this point.

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Sparky Prime
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Re: Beast Wars (2021) ongoing series

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The writer Tweeted back in November that he'd turned in the script for issue #14. So it will continue beyond 12 issues... Although if the rumors of IDW loosing the Transformers license are true, it may not last much beyond that.

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Re: Beast Wars (2021) ongoing series

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Issue 11 came out this week... I have yet to get a copy, but I've seen some spoilers I wanted to discuss.
Spoiler
Terrorsaur kills Razorbeast by throwing him into a floating mountain of energon, which explodes. Part of me hopes they haven't killed off Razorbeast, when they only introduced him two issues ago. It's such a waste of a character if they only introduced him to (briefly) be friendly to Skold, so that she'd be upset by his death. He literally had no character development. The other part, I really don't want them to pull the comic book cliche of having him miraculously survive the explosion. This was just too rushed on the writers part. Skold figuratively shuts down with the loss of her friend... That she knew for all of 5 minutes. With Terrorsaur yelling at her to get back into the fight, and tormenting her, she snaps, and rips out his spark. So... Terrorsaur is dead. I expected Skold to snap sooner or later with the degree of trauma some of the Predacons have subjected her to, but again, this feels rushed with how briefly Razorbeast was even in the book. He needed to have more of a presence in the book for this to really have any weight to it.

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Re: Beast Wars (2021) ongoing series

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Issue 11 full issue...

Megatron remains frustrated by the Golden Disk, still not having gained any further access to any of its encoded files when the Darksyde's computer alerts him that they're under attack. Welcoming the attack to take his frustrations out on something, he is quickly engaged by Dinobot. With the Predacons distracted, Nyx and Rattrap are able to sneak on board. Nyx makes her way to the engine room where she encounters Tarantulas, but having her weapons online this time, she is able to put up a fight. Meanwhile, Rattrap finds the Golden Disk, but rather than stealing it or destroying it, reasons Megatron wouldn't just leave something so valuable out in the open, and decides to verify if it is the real thing (I get the feeling Rattrap's code breaking skills will inadvertently give Megatron the breakthrough he needs because of this).

Outside, things are still going according the plan for the Maximals. Razorbeast tries to breakup the fight between Optimus and Skold, pointing out the Maximals are only fighting defensively and stunning their opponents. But Terrorsaur interrupts, carrying Razorbeast to one of the floating energon islands, and drops him in, causing an explosion. Meanwhile, Megatron has gotten the upper-hand on Dinobot after realizing the Maximals haven't been able to fully repair him, but Dinobot is saved when Optimus steps in to fight the Predacon leader. Terrorsaur lands to yell at Skold to get back in the fight, but she snaps, and rips out his spark, saying she never liked him. She then tells Waspinator they've lost Terrorsaur. Waspinator, believing she means the Maximals killed him, vows that he'll be avenged...

--

Honestly don't know if Razorbeast is actually dead or not. The explosion is big enough, it probably should have killed him. But the way it's shown, they could just as easily do the comic book cliche that he could somehow miraculously survive. If he is dead, it'd be such a waste of a character, since he was introduced two issues ago, and his only defining character trait has been that he was friendly towards Skold. It's also disappointing, none of the Maximals react at all to Razorbeast's (apparent) death. Granted, most of them are busy fighting, but no one noticed the explosion? At the very least, Optimus was right next to Skold when Razorbeast got carried off, until he went to help Dinobot... Heck, why did Optimus go help Dinobot instead of Razorbeast after Terrorsaur swooped in?

Considering how much of a bully Terrorsaur has been to Skold, I'm not surprised she reached her breaking point with him. But, Terrorsaur is generally the type of character to back down once he's been knocked down a peg, like we saw when Blackarachnia pinned him to the ground a few issues back. I figured they'd go that route... not have her kill him. It just doesn't feel earned for the writer to go to that extreme, since Skold only knew Razorbeast for like 5 minutes before they were attacked by those robot wolves. It doesn't come off convincingly with how rushed Razorbeast was introduced and subsequently killed off. It's also disappointing that they'd kill off a character from the show so relatively early in the series, especially when it has been struggling with pacing and characterization. Terrorsaur was probably one of the most developed characters in this story thus far (not that that's saying much). But now that characterization feels like it was accidental, because they were actually just playing up him as a jerk to weakly justify killing him off early.

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Re: Beast Wars (2021) ongoing series

Post by andersonh1 »

I finally picked up issue 11, and it was pretty good as far as getting the entire cast involved and allowing the Maximals to go on the offensive. However it is a waste of characters to kill both Terrorsaur and Razorbeast only 11 issues into the series, particularly when Razorbeast just got added to the cast. The pacing on this series has been terrible, and some characters are ignored by the writer while others get to do everything. I like the art at least.

There's just so much squandered potential in this series.

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Re: Beast Wars (2021) ongoing series

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Issue 12

Optimus tells Nyx and Rattrap to hurry things up in the Predacon ship as he fights Megatron. Oddly, Megatron thinks Optimus is praying, despite Optimus has his hand on his earpiece. Nyx destroys the Predacon's transwarp drive, and stuns Tarantulas, but Rattrap is having trouble. Removing the Golden Disk has locked him in Megatron's room. Meanwhile, Rhinox refuses to fight back against Skold, allowing her to punch him to work out her grief over the loss of Razorbeast, while Dinobot takes down Waspinator with his eye lasers and Cheetor uses Blackarachnia's stun weapon to take down Scorponok. (I have to wonder if the artist forgot she had a handheld weapon, and machine guns at the tips of the spider-legs, because she's shown just shooting giant beams from her claws. While the animators of the cartoon had to get creative, at times, to give characters projectile weapons when absent from the toys, it seems odd here to ignore the weapons she already has to give her a massive beam weapon she can shoot from her claws). Nyx radios that she and Rattrap need more muscle to open the door, to which Optimus responds he'll be there momentarily. Yet again, Megatron thinks he's just muttering to himself. Adding insult to injury, Optimus reveals he's been playing "rope-a-dope" (oddly specific boxing reference in this context, which Optimus even directly references Muhammad Ali as a 'warrior from an alien culture'. Not sure how/why Optimus would be aware of this strategy specifically from human history). Optimus severely damages the Predacon leader, much to everyone's surprise (Blackarachnia runs off at this point, thinking she may have to reconsider he allegiances). Skold also gives up her fight with Rhinox, saying there is no satisfaction killing him if he wont fight back... And just stands there as Rhinox walks away.

Optimus and Nyx manage to get Rattrap out, but they're trapped behind a forcefield before they can exit the Predacon ship. Megatron (missing the flesh on his T-rex head) and Tarantulas gloat that they are doomed, but Optimus points out they have the Golden Disk and have destroyed the Predacons transwarp drive. And if he tries to take the Axalon, Optimus claims they'll set off the auto-destruct. Megatron's only option is to release them, in exchange for the Maximals handing the Golden Disk back over to him.

Boarding their escape shuttle, Nyx expresses her disappointment in not being able to get the disk, but Rattrap reveals he managed to make an internal copy of its data. Dinobot says they should have taken the opportunity to kill Megatron or at least take him prisoner. But Optimus claims he doesn't want Megatron on the Axalon until it's ready to fly him back to Cybertron to face justice. For now, they'll just have to keep ruining his plans (WHAT?! Primal would rather keep risking his and his crew's lives stopping Megatron's schemes, rather than keeping him locked up? If he's concerned about holding him on the ship until repairs are done, why couldn't they set up an offsite holding cell or something?). Rattrap inquires why he wasn't aware of the Axalon's self-destruct, concerned they could accidently set it off when they rewire the bridge, to which Optimus reveals he was bluffing. Meanwhile, Megatron tells Tarantulas he's enraged at himself for underestimating the Maximals twice now. From now on, his focus will be on destroying Optimus Primal.

In the epilogue, Tarantulas has salvaged Terrorsaur's lifeless body, and begins working on how to give it life from beyond death... Making good on why he saved Terrorsaur from getting scrapped by Megatron a few issues back.

----
It really bothers me how none of the Maximals show any remorse for the loss of Razorbeast here or even talk about him at all. One of their team members died on this mission and they don't seem care at all. Heck, Rhinox shows more concern for Skold's feelings than he does Razorbeast himself. He's the only Maximal to mention Razorbeast's name in this issue, but only in regard to Skold's feeling towards him.

Skold blames the Maximals for Razorbeast's death... because they brought him. I get she's lashing out here, but why blame the Maximals? She already killed Terrorsaur.

Why does Megatron keep thinking Optimus is talking to himself in this issue, and doesn't realize he is talking over the radio? I don't understand why they'd play Megatron as being this dumb not to realize what Optimus is actually doing.

Megatron nearly uses his main beam weapon while in beast mode... He's only prevented from doing so when Optimus uses his swords to pin his mouth shut. Again, I really don't like that they show these characters can use their robot mode weapons while in beast mode. It gives them less need to transform between forms and makes the energon radiation less of a threat. I felt this issue would have been the perfect time to show their need to use their beast modes, since many of them stay in robot mode the entire battle. Yet, none of them ever experienced energon built-up. It's disappointing that the energon still hasn't been shown to be a problem for them in this comic. Why bother using this setting with the dangerous energon radiation, if the whole reason for it doesn't seem to matter?

While Optimus, Nyx and Rattrap are trapped behind the forcefield on the Darksyde, what exactly are Rhinox, Cheetor and Dinobot doing? All of their opponents were either stunned, ran off, or in Terrorsaur's case, dead. So, why didn't they do anything to help out? Optimus didn't have to make a deal with Megatron to let them go if he'd just called them in for backup. Wasn't part of the Maximals plan, as Optimus outlined a couple issues ago, to 'keep the Predacons contained until they could be captured'? So... Why didn't they do that? I mean, they could have actually captured all of the Predacons in this issue, except for Blackarachnia because she ran off. But now suddenly Optimus feels it's too risky to have them captured on the Axalon until they make repairs? Why? It feels like the writer wrote himself into a corner here and had to make the characters stupid just to keep the story going...

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Re: Beast Wars (2021) ongoing series

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Issue 13

During a battle with the Predacons (no details are established about when or why this battle takes place), an energon crystal is hit near Cheetor's position. Next thing he knows, he's waking up back on Cybertron, getting a medical checkup for his service on the Axalon. Confused, Cheetor decides to take a walk to clear his head. He ends up at MacCadam's bar where we find out Cheetor was a racing athlete as some fans of his question why he quit to become a scientist. Strangely, everyone keeps asking him about the "tiwaz maneuver". Rather than answer, Cheetor continues to wonder about the city.

Remembering the explosion, a purple Cheetor suddenly shows up, surprised Cheetor has realized none of this is real so quickly. He introduces himself as Pakak, one of the Vok stewards protecting/studying the planet they're on. He'd intended to probe Cheetor's mind to learn some particulars about the protoforms, but became curious about this "tiwaz maneuver". Cheetor doesn't believe any of it, but says he won't talk either way. Angry, Pakak demonstrates that he can harm and even kill Cheetor if he wants. But Cheetor laughs it off, saying if he's killed, Pakak still wont get the information he's after. Pakak realizes Cheetor is right and decides to try betting. If Pakak can defeat Cheetor in a race, Cheetor has to tell him what he wants to know. If Cheetor wins, Pakak will release him from his mental suppression. Cheetor takes the bet, knowing he's the fastest Cybertronian alive, but Pakak decides to race as Blurr.

Back at the Axalon, Rhinox can't figure out what's wrong with Cheetor. Diagnostics show his processors are working overtime, and there is nothing physically damaged. All he can recommend is that they wait for him to come back online on his own. Back in Cheetor's mind, Cheetor is able to win the race, but Pakak reveals it was all a ruse. While Cheetor was focused on winning, Pakak was able to map his mind and get the information he wanted. The tiwaz maneuver was a bust, but he also got information about the protoforms, and expresses his interest in experimenting on them. Cheetor tries to stop him but Pakak honors their agreement and brings him back online. Cheetor tries to tell Optimus about the Vok, but is quickly "hard rebooted". Rhinox points out the reboot was not initiated by Cheetor, but when Optimus askes about what the Vok when Cheetor comes back online another second later, we find it wiped his memory of his encounter with Pakak.

---

So... This issue was filler. With Cheetor's reboot, he's unable to tell Optimus about the Vok's plans to experiment on the protoforms. All he's able to tell him is the name Vok, which the Maximals probably wont even take seriously. Even if they do, the name itself doesn't give them any useful information. The Vok, we already knew had expressed an interest in running experiments on the protoforms. But apparently they needed to know some information about how to reprogram them? Which apparently Cheetor had some knowledge of? Why would he? As they point out, he was an athlete who, for whatever reason, decided to enlist on a science vessel (even though, again, the first issue made it out that the Axalon was just transporting the protoforms and weren't on a science mission themselves). Which begs to question, why would Cheetor decide to make such a major career change? This would have been the perfect issue to explore that. Actually give Cheetor some character development in this comic. But unfortunately, they don't give us any explanations for anything, making this issue feel entirely pointless...

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Re: Beast Wars (2021) ongoing series

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Issue 14

The Predacons discover a form of red energon that is making the local wild life more aggressive (I thought energon didn't have an effect on organic life?). Scorponok and Waspinator point out that they weren't affected, which Tarantulas thinks says more about their personalities. A few days later, Optimus and Dinobot are setting up some new sensors that'll give them a heads up on Predacon activity, and in short order the two are attacked by Tarantulas and Blackarachnia. They attach a device to Dinobot's neck which goes off before Optimus can remove it. When Optimus wakes up they're back at the Axalon, and immediately attacks Rhinox, blaming him for not being there. Optimus runs off, while Dinobot and Rhinox quickly deduce Optimus is suffering from some sort of energon poisoning that is making him more aggressive. Dinobot suggests he wasn't affected because he hated his fellow Predacons, and wants to murder Rattrap, but restrains himself, so he's developed more self control (uh, ok then). Optimus gets into a fight with the others, and Dinobot suggests he focus his anger on Megatron, which Optimus does. Rhinox believes Optimus will probably burn off the energon before arriving.

Back at the Darksyde, Megatron is making repairs when Waspinator reports a Maximal has fallen into a trap. Leading him into the woods, Megatron is starting to get annoyed and realizes something is off about Waspinator's voice (why didn't he realize this back on the Darksyde?) who suddenly attacks Megatron, and is revealed to actually be Saberback in disguise and quickly knocks him out. He reports that's one down. Similarly, Optimus is attacked by Polar Claw (who talks like Death's Head, ending most of his sentences with a "yes?" or "no?"). Optimus fights back but eventually Polar Claw knocks him out, and reports back to "the gods" Primal is theirs.

--

So this issue is essentially half "Gorilla Warfare" and half... something else. Not sure what the writer was going for here. Or if this issue's story the result of fast tracking the plot because IDW is loosing the Transformers license, with only 3 issues and an annual left to go of this series? Whatever the case is, it's very odd how this issue suddenly pivots to become a completely different story half way through.

I don't like how the Maximals just let Primal go after Megatron. Did they learn nothing from the situation Nyx was in not that long ago? What if he doesn't burn off the energon poisoning before reaching the Darksyde? Or ran into trouble before then, which of course, is exactly what happens. Also disappointing the Maximals don't even really discuss how to handle the situation. Rattrap asks if they're sure about letting Optimus go with his current state of mind, but that's it. Rhinox just dismisses it as no big deal, which is a reoccurring mistake they keep making in this series.

Skold only appears in this issue holding a damaged piece of equipment while Megatron attempts to fix it, telling her to hold it still. So after expressing her aggression killing Terrorsaur and beating up Rhinox.... She's back to the lowliest grunt status? Why is Megatron even having her hold it while he's working on it? Does the Darksyde not have workbenches or tables? Megatron also complains about having to make repairs by himself and... Why is he the only one making repairs?

Surprised to see Saberback. Didn't expect to see a character originally from Beast Wars Neo. Polar Claw is a character I'd hoped would be in this book, as a figure I've always liked the design of and has never really been a major character. But he talks like Death's Head (adding a "yes?" or "no?" at the end of most sentences) and I can't say I care for that. Apparently that was done as a nod to Simon Furman. I'm disappointed that they appear to be simply reprogrammed protoforms to serve the Vok though. When they said they wanted to do some experiments in the previous issues, so I expected something that would alter them physically in some way. It would have been neat to see a new take on the origins of the Fuzors or the Mutants, or perhaps Transmetal 2s or the Cyber Beasts since they are using a character from a Japanese series. At the very least, they could have made use of the switching mutant head gimmick some of the early figures, like Polar Claw, had. I dunno, it just feels like a missed opportunity to have introduced something more than what is essentially just a third faction under the Vok's control.

Shouldn't some of the other protoforms have been found by either the Maximals or Predacons by now? Blackarachnia said she programmed them to land within 500 kliks of the Axalon... After several days, if not weeks, none have been located by either group since Razorbeast?

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Re: Beast Wars (2021) ongoing series

Post by andersonh1 »

Yeah, I read the issue and thought "I've seen this story before...."

There may well be a quick wrap-up of plotlines going on, as there seems to be in the main Transformers series. It makes the glacial pacing of the series so far all the more disappointing.

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Re: Beast Wars (2021) ongoing series

Post by andersonh1 »

Beast Wars Annual - A waste of my $6. Three lightweight stories that are somewhat enjoyable, but ultimately mean nothing in the bigger picture, plus a preview of the next monthly issue. Feels like a quick "throw any artist we can find at it" cash grab before the license expires.

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