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Transformers Lost Light #8

Review by Paul Bowler

The search continues in Transformers Lost Light #8 following their adventure in the parallel Functionist universe, which culminated with Megatron becoming separated from his crewmates, and Rodiums and Co departing from Necroworld. He’s found some new friends along the way too, including Anode, a blacksmith skilled in facilitating the Cybertronian birthing process, and her trusty sidekick, Lug. Now a trip to the lost property hub of the universe begins a new and ever eventful chapter in the Transformers saga as their quest to uncover the secrets of the Knights of Cybertron brings Nautica, Velocity, Anode, and Lug to the Howling Town…

From the opening flashback to Caminus, one thing that strikes you about this new issue of IDW Publishing’s Transformers Lost Light, is just how well it caters for both long-term Transformers fans and new readers. This skilfully crafted new story-arc by writer James Roberts quickly immerses us in events. Rodimus has dropped Nautica, Velocity, Anode, and Lug off on the planet Troja Major, a bustling intergalactic market-place where they hope to find a replacement map to Cyberutopia. Not everything is quite as Lug remembers it though, and it transpires Troja Major has been rebranded as the bereavement capitol of the galaxy.

While Nautica and Velocity lean some startling facts about clans of the Knights of Cybertron in a Museum of curios, Anode and Lug investigate a strange compound where they discover newly formed Transformers with some rather disturbing alt modes! This is Transformers at its very best. Roberts deftly brings all the strands of the plot together, it’s all deeply engaging and fascinating stuff, and the way that the Transformer characters different personalities all spark off each other as they bungle through their adventures is a joy to behold.

Similarly, the artwork by Priscilla Tramontano proves a delightful complement to James Roberts intricate scripting. The subtleties of the open and overlapping panel layouts effortlessly guide you through events as they unfold, each seamlessly flowing into the next, brooding revelations and frenetic action peppers the narrative at key intervals, and the level of detail Priscilla Tramontano crams into each panel is astonishing – especially in the market place and the museum. The colors by Joana Lafuente are rich and vibrant throughout, with bright shades and bold hues accentuating the finer nuances of Tramontano’s art beautifully, and the Transformers and their surroundings look even more impressive as a result

After a run in with a strange race of creatures packing some serious firepower, Anode and Lug bump into Wipe-Out and take refuge in a local bar where they compare notes, share intriguing new viewpoints, and settle their nerves with a swig or two of Engx. It seems someone has been hunting Blacksmiths, organics are in league with the Black Block Consortia in the middle of a turf war, but why do they need Blacksmiths? Whatever the Consortia’s reason might be, as this issue of Transformers Lost Light draws to a close, it looks like Anode and her friends will soon find out!

Bursting with exposition diligently lettered by Tom B Long, Transformers Lost Light #8 commands your full attention, and it does so with ease as the series continues to build on the rich legacy of insightful characterization and multi-faceted storylines of its illustrious forerunner – Transformers More Than Meets The Eye – with this issues terrific story by James Roberts and stunning art by Priscilla Tramontano. IDW is constantly knocking it out the park with their Transformers titles, Lost Light is another fine addition to the Cybertronian’s mythos, and Transformers Lost Light #8 is one of the most compelling and fun issues so far.

Publisher: IDW

Writer: James Roberts / Art: Priscilla Tramontano

Colors: Joana Lafuente / Letters: Tomb B Long