Ricky Church reviews Transformers: Beast Wars #7…
With the opening arc to IDW’s reimagined Transformers: Beast Wars having finished in the previous issue, now writer Erik Burnham turns to how the Maximals and Predacons are digging in to the strange new planet and the conflict between them, even as a fan favourite character makes her debut in the issue. Beast Wars #7 serves mostly as a character driven story as it explores the dynamics between many of the characters in both factions.
It is a nice change of pace given how action-oriented the last two or three issues have been with the Maximals and Predacons in their first physical conflict. Beast Wars #7 shows the factions planning for their future as the Predacons search for energon and the Maximals get to know Dinobot and his insight into his former comrades. Burnham writes Optimus and Dinobot pretty well together, already showing teasing the friendship they had in the original series while playing off the injuries Dinobot received from the Predacons and his recovery. Burnham captures their characteristics whole putting his own spin on them. His handling of the Predacons is likewise well written as Terrorsaur tries to assume command while Megatron is occupied and even bullies Skold, furthering Dinobot’s assessment of her from a couple issues ago. It raises an interesting question if he might be the only one to defect from the Predacons in this series.
Neither group has a whole lot of time in the issue though as the meat of the issue is the introduction of Blackarachnia as her stasis pod crash lands. Blackarachnia makes quite a memorable debut and right away is an interesting addition. The original series didn’t have her come into play until several episodes in the first season so her early introduction raises some very intriguing possibilities. Her journey from her stasis pod to the Maximal base as her new Predacon programming kicks in allows us to get to know her before she meets anyone else from either faction. It shows how even when she’s unsure of the world she’s on or what her programming is, she is still quite deadly first as her encounter with a crocodile-like creature proves, even more so as it barely rattles her.
With Josh Burcham off art duties for this issue, it falls on Winston Chan to illustrate Blackarachnia’s debut. Where Burcham’s art is more animated, Chan’s style is a bit more three-dimensional as well as accurate to the Beast Wars cartoon. His character designs seem ripped from the show with the amount of detail on them, from the fur on Optimus Primal and Rattrap to Dinobot’s scowl. Blackaranchia is particularly well designed both in her robot and beast forms. Colourist Sidvenblu adds to the incredible detailing on the bots with their fur, shadows, scales and how vibrant the landscapes and sky look. Chan and Sidvenblue’s combined artwork makes for a great visual issue with plenty of richness to their illustrations and colours.
Transformers: Beast Wars #7 is a very nice change, allowing both the readers and characters some time to breath and further adjust to the reboot now that the first shots have been taken. Burnham’s writing continues to nail the characters while Chan’s artwork and Sidvenblu’s colours make some terrific visuals. With Blackarachnia’s arrival and Burnham’s teases of future events – including a very interesting video Megatron found on the Golden Disk – the Beast Wars comic is getting even more fun and exciting.
Ricky Church – Follow me on Twitter for more movie news and nerd talk.