Transformers Spotlight #1: Shockwave
IDW Publishing (September, 2006)
WRITER: Simon Furman
ARTIST: Nick Roche
SELECTED COVER ART: James Raiz
COLORIST: Josh Burcham
LETTERING: Sulaco Studios
EDITOR: Dan Taylor
Transformers Spotlight featured stories focused on one particular Transformer or team. Eventually IDW dropped the numbering system but this is the first issue.
Realizing Cybertron’s civil war was going to lead to a depletion of energy, Shockwave seeded particular worlds with Energon. Once they were ready Shockwave left Cybertron to cultivate his “seeds”, one of them landing on Earth. While there he is attacked by the “Dynobots”, seeking revenge for experiments he performed on them leading to them having more animal-like alternate modes. At first he can’t fathom the logic but once he turns his logic systems off his primal rage manages to take down all the Dynobots. However, Grimlock has one last trick up his sleeve, having prepped their ships lasers to bombard the planet, thus taking down Shockwave as well, until in present day when an excavation team uncovers his remains.
What they got right: There are some interesting homages to the original Marvel run in how Shockwave and the Dinobots fought, but with some alterations that still make the story unique, like the ending. The Dynobots’ dinosaur modes look cool. We also get a good look into just how Shockwave thinks.
What they got wrong: The problem is that they’re using essentially Beast Era technology rather than their usual mechanical dinosaur modes, and for the same reason as the Maximals and Predacons of Beast Wars, to protect them from raw Energon in the atmosphere. It feels out-of-place here, but that could just be me. Also, Shockwave killed the dinosaurs, unless you though Transformers being the cause of early Earth history was something exclusive to the Bayformers.
Recommendation: A good one-shot story that lets us inside Shockwave’s head and sets up both events we know about and events to come. It’s worth checking out.