Sunday, May 25, 2014

The Usual Suspect: Windblade # 2!

The quirkiest of IDW Publishing’s Transformers comic titles continues with “Transformers: Windblade” # 2, featuring the female Autobot in the lead role. Two issues in, “Windblade” starts to expound on the mystery established in last month’s inaugural issue.

Written by Mairghread Scott and illustrated by Sarah Stone, “Windblade” # 2 picks up where the first issue left off. In the aftermath of the attempt on her life, city speaker Windblade suspects that Starscream is behind the assassination attempt and isn’t quite done yet. Together with Chromia, Windblade tries to get to the bottom of the plot, while Starscream and Rattrap whisper about what’s next (“I’ve got something real special in mind,” Rattrap says).

A journey to Metroplex reveals nothing. But they find something—or rather, someone—in Blurr’s bar: Waspinator. It turns out life’s favorite chew toy (as the character page says) turns out to have heard something important, even as he says trademark Waspinator lines: “Everyone hurtzzz Wazzpinator.” At trip into the bowels of Metroplex’s filtration systems reveals that Starscream may be mining a dark secret.

As a resolute Windblade gathers the backup she can and dive back into the mine meets with resistance as a bad guy warns: “You aren’t makin’ it outta here, misfits.”

Halfway through “Windblade’s” run, Scott brings the city speaker into action and the verge of uncovering what’s really going on. Scott brings out great character moments, particularly between Windblade, Chromia, Ironhide, Blurr and, of course, Waspinator. While last issue—unusual and striking—would be impossible to beat, Scott continues her quality work on the title.

Stone’s remarkable, cartoon-meets-paint art remains refreshing different from the efforts of the other two current TF artists, Alex Milne and Andrew Griffith. It just jumps out at you, looking like stills from a honest-to-goodness TV show. It should be noted, though, that Stone’s style is so different that, while attractive and dynamic, sometimes makes the characters difficult to recognize. Still, that little quibble is worth it just to see such a unique take on the TF designs.

The cool creative team continues to do great work on this mini-series and makes it an imperative to pick up the next issue. “Transformers: Windblade” keeps bringing the quirkiness to the TF world. Stay tuned to this ‘toon-style title.

Next time: Transformers Robots in Disguise # 29!

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