Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Review - Transformers Holiday Special 2015 (@IDWPublishing)


"This isn't Santa on a mission The whole world spanin'...it's a Decepticon warlord with an armed fusion cannon!"

The holidays are all about bringing together families. Your brother and that one uncle that never seems to get along. Warring siblings. Autobots and Decepticons. Yes, even Transformers get the chance to enjoy the holidays and their tales are recounted in Transformers Holiday Special 2015 from IDW Publishing. "Choose Me" is written by Marghread Scott, illustrated by Colin Howell and colored by Thomas Deer, "Silent Light" is written by James Roberts, illustrated by Kotteri and colored by Joanna Lafuente and "The Thirteenth Day of Christmas" is written by John Barber and illustrated by Josh Burcham.

"Choose Me" is a paean to Starscream told with a Christmas carol flair. "Silent Light" features a character finding strange comfort in an even stranger course of action. Finally, "The Thirteenth Day of Christmas" pits Santa Claus against a very familiar Decepticon.

It's not often that the Transformmers and Decepticons get any chance for levity, but Transformers Holiday Special 2015 offers the characters just that. Scott infuses "Choose Me" with a Christmas carol cadence that really makes Starscream's vanity seem amusing. Roberts gives "Silent Light" a strange sense of family that reminds the reader that they're all Transformers to begin with regardless of what side they fall on. And Barber has a lot of fun in "The Thirteenth Day of Christmas," giving readers another reason to despise Megatron. Each story is its own tale, but they all work together very well to ring in the holidays with a ton of spirit.

The artwork across the stories is varied, but all of it feels jovial. Howell's approach in "Choose Me" comes across as juvenile in the sense that it looks at the Transformers as if they're kids--a look that's further elaborated upon by Deer's vibrant color palette. Kotteri gives all the players plenty of emotion and expression in "Silent Light," cramming the panels full of Transformers interacting with one another. Lafuente uses a variety of shades of reds and greens to reinforce the holiday spirit in "Silent Light" as well. And Burcham's work in "The Thirteenth Day of Christmas" blends a pulp noir look with a more fanciful take on the Transformers, presenting what looks to be the most jovial story of the three.

Transformers Holiday Special 2015 is a lot of fun. It offers readers a new take on very familiar characters, pitting Autobots against Decepticons in battles that are a far cry from what pass interactions have generated. The three stories are imbued with holiday spirit and feel lighthearted. The artwork is varied, but each story capitalizes on the differing styles to bolster the spirit of the story itself. Transformers Holiday Special 2015 is definitely something to check out if you want to see the Transformers in a slightly different light.

Transformers Holiday Special 2015 is in stores December 23.

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