Transformers Movie Prequel #4
IDW Publishing (May, 2007)
WRITERS: Simon Furman & Chris Ryall
ARTIST: Don Figueroa
COLORIST: Josh Burcham (assisted by Mark Bristow)
LETTERER: Robbie Robbins
EDITOR: Dan Taylor
The Decepticons obtain their new alternate modes and go searching for the All-Spark (and Megatron, as Blackout reminds Starscream). Meanwhile, Bumblebee continues to search Archibald’s history, while Sam prepares to sell some of it off. Using an artificial isotope that mimics the energy radiated by the All-Spark, Sector 7 and Agent Simmons set a trap for N.B.E.-2 (Bumblebee) but it’s the Decepticons that spring it. Blackout is able to tap their computer and learns about Sector 7 before they’re able to cut him off, and Barricade comes up with a plan to keep an eye on Bumblebee since he’s been here longer and may have his own lead. This all leads into Michael Bay’s first Transformers movie.
What they got right: We get a bit more about Agent Simmons’ history, and unlike the movies he comes off as competent instead of an ego-driven goofball. The story is also competent.
What they got wrong: Then again it not only clashes with the Target special but with what’s planned for the Bumblebee prequel movie. Granted that last one is out of their control, but Furman and Ryall worked on the Target special probably around the same time as this miniseries. And we get more “real world events blamed on aliens” stuff, as Three Mile Island is blamed on early experiments with the All-Spark. Granted nobody died from that but this franchise, both in movies and in IDW comics reviewed when they came out like the Sector 7 miniseries had a bad habit of blaming every major event and invention somehow on the Transformers and Cybertronian science and that just bothers me when sci-fi does this, never mind as often as this franchise has.
Recommendation: Overall the miniseries isn’t too bad but it does suffer some of the same problems as the first Transformers movie. And it’s contradicted by the movies now (despite this being an official comic, but the novels were contradictory as well at times) thanks to Bumblebee taking place in 1984 with his more classic VW Beetle alt mode. It’s not a must-own but not a bad read either. At least Simmons is tolerable here.