Review - Transformers Primacy #1

"There was a moment where the most dangerous Cybertronian alive...saved the world. Now all is quiet. But the peace...cannot last."

It'd be nice if one day humanity comes face-to-face with an alien race. Hopefully, that alien race is receptive to us and doesn't want to enslave us. If they do want to enslave us, there's another hope that we'll have a rival alien race to challenge that authority and fight on our side, as the Autobots tend to do quite often. When they're not fighting to save humans though, they're seemingly in constant battle with their own enemies in Decepticons, a battle starting anew in Transformers Primacy #1 from IDW Publishing. The issue is written by Chris Metzen and Flint Dille, illustrated by Livid Ramondelli and lettered by Chris Mowry.

The war for Cybertron is ramping up, pitting familiar sides and opponents against one another. And after the events of "Monstrosity," Cybertron is now left in the dark. Optimus is taking some personal time, traveling to the harsh, polar regions of Cybertron, which prompts a rather alarming discovery on his part. Meanwhile, the Decepticons are regrouping after Scorponok's haphazard leadership, giving Megatron the opportunity he needs to regain control of the group he's so familiar with.

Transformers as a story always seems to work best when it's Optimus Prime against Megatron, as the two of them are stalwarts of the war. Transformers Primacy #1 does an excellent job building this up, giving both key players ample opportunity to coalesce their armies and prepare for the next go round in the seemingly neverending battle. Metzen and Dille do a great job infusing both characters with the traits that make them leaders in their own ways. Those traits are also familiar to most readers and give them something to grab hold onto if they're not versed in the Transformers lore. And Transformers Primacy #1 is definitely very involved, requiring a lot of knowledge on the part of the reader when it comes to knowing the intricacies of what makes the Transformers universe tick.

There's little that an artist could do with Transformers that's unfamiliar and Ramondelli does well sticking with the familiar characters. His style is very interesting in that it's largely dark and rife with shadows, yet he still manages to offer an abundance of detail in the Transformers. Granted, there are some panels where the action is a little difficult to make out because of the shading choices, but it doesn't take away from the book's overall look. Ramondelli's style is very unique and a very good fit for the property, really capturing the beauty of giant robots who can transform into other vehicles, weapons, dinosaurs, etc.

Transformers Primacy #1 is kind of a return to the core of Transformers. It's gearing up to be Optimus Prime versus Megatron again, which for some reason never really feels as if it gets old. Metzen and Dille do a great job with the build-up in the issue, doing their best to to bring the reader into the fold despite the heavy reliance on reading other Transformer stories. Ramondelli's style is unique and effective at conveying the action to the reader, adding something of a nouveau look to the characters and settings. Transformers Primacy #1 is a very strong book that lays the groundwork for what could be an even stronger series.

Transformers Primacy #1 is in stores now with interiors below.