Optimus Prime Annual 2018 Review

by Olivier Roth on February 28, 2018

Written by: John Barber

Art by: Priscilla Tramontano & Andrew Griffith

Colors by: John-Paul Bove & John Burcham

Published by: IDW


What happens when you are the ‘savior’ of the Transformers, but no one seems to really trust you and you’ve probably stabbed everyone in the back at least once? Well, that is the issue plaguing Starscream as he settles into his new role as the leader/savior of Cybertron.


So, what does he come up with as a solution? Well, make a movie of course! Struck by inspiration as he is watching a Cybertronian film released on Earth, Starscream figures that he can ‘smooth’ the narrative to make him out to be the hero he thinks he is. Enter Thundercracker, my new favorite Transformer and his dog Buster.


From here, the issue explores Thundercrackers desire, and almost need, to make this movie happen. Barber does an amazing job showing the reader the trials and tribulations that Thundercracker has to face to get this done.


First, we get the very unreliable narrative from the point of view of Starscream - he’s reliving some moments from his past that are not entirely accurate - and Thundercracker should know, having been part of Starscream’s Seekers while in the Decepticons.


You also get the fact that Thundercracker is going into this project as a complete amature dramatist. He does surround himself though with some author Cybertronians to try to get this done. We have Acid Storm, our lead actor, who keeps complaining about the makeup; we have Tankor, the makeup artist, who keeps screwing up the makeup; and finally Proxima, our cinematographer who keeps reminding Thundercracker that he needs proper lighting, and also wants to get paid.


Along the way, we also get encounters with Alpha Trion and Skywarp to get their views of Starscream’s ascension. The former gives us some background on this whole ‘savior’ bit and the latter gives us more of the early days of Starscream and the Seekers.


As a whole, this comic was hands down one of my favorite reads that I’ve had in quite a while. The whole premise of the issue is fantastic, Barber’s writing made me fall in love with Thundercracker and Buster, Tramontano and Griffith’s art is fantastic throughout (and when reading Transformers comics, a big positive when you can tell them all apart), and Bove and Burcham’s colors just pop off the page (and help quite a bit when distinguishing between Starscream, Thundercracker and Skywarp - gotta love those repaints right?).

Our Score:


A Look Inside