Ricky Church reviews Transformers: Salvation…
Exiled from civilization, the Dinobots are the last line of defense against the ultimate Cybertronian dinosaur – Trypticon! But how much are the Dinobots willing to sacrifice for a world that hates them?
Out of the many transformers in the whole franchise, a lot of people’s favourites are the group of Autobots known as the Dinobots. These guys are as slightly rebellious to their superiors, yet loyal as they come to each and extremely fierce. It may also be because they’re robotic dinosaurs and someone would have to be crazy not to like them. The one-shot Transformers: Salvation delivers an issue that not only features the Dinobots, but the massive robot-dinosaur Trypticon as well.
John Barber delivers on the action front very well. Who wouldn’t want to see a bunch of robot dinosaurs fighting one huge robot dinosaur? Throw the Decepticon gestalt Devastator into the mix and the action is really ramped up. But despite all the actin, there is a story in the issue as well as the Dinobots attempt to save the next generation of Cybertron from the clutches of Bludgeon. A lot of focus is given on the themes of redemption and hope as the Dinobots fight for the promise of a war-free Cybertron. It definitely caps off the trilogy that started with Punishment and Redemption nicely.
However, the story itself is a bit confusing just because of the non-linear aspect. Barber jumps between several points in time that can sometimes make the issue hard to follow as you try placing the events in order. It’s a little jarring when an action scene suddenly shifts to a couple characters talking and it doesn’t go back to the action for a little while. It doesn’t drag the issue down by much, but does make it confusing on the first read.
Livio Ramondelli’s art is well done and suits the issue. He’s always had a different style compared to other artists on the various Transformers titles, using a lot of dark colours to bring out the atmosphere. His art reflects the tone of the story and can be quite detailed, giving some cool designs to Bludgeon and Trypticon. The Dinobots themselves look great as well, each one being distinct enough in robot form that you can tell which one is which.
Though the story for Transformers: Salvation is a bit confusing due to its non-linear format, Barber does nail the characterizations of the characters and the themes presented in the issue. Ramondelli’s art captures the tone of Barber’s story and elevates it with his evocative imagery. Fans of the Dinobots should really enjoy Salvation for the character work and action Barber and Ramondelli deliver.