IDW Publishing "Autocracy" #8 Comic Book Review
Cover Price: $.99 (Digital Exclusive)
Publisher: IDW Publishing
Publishing Date: April 25, 2012
Story by: Chris Metzen & Flint Dille
Art by: Livio Ramondelli
Letters by: Robbie Robbins
Editor: John Barber & Carlos Guzman
The Citadel, Iacon:
Zeta Prime is addressing the Senate, who are not too pleased with the way he has been handling the Decepticons and Orion Pax's team. Zeta is confident that all is well however, believing his Vamparc weapons and the Omega Destructors make him invincible. Suddenly, the Citadel comes under attack! Zeta quickly orders the Vamparc cannons and Omega Destructors to be activated. He then calls for Ultra Magnus!
Outside, the combined Autobot/Decepticon attack force is busy taking out the cannons and fighting off the Omega Destructors. Above, Astrotrain flies on top of the Senate Chamber and drops off Orion and Megatron, who crash into the chamber and confront Zeta Prime directly! Orion manages to get a few good blows in including taking out Zeta's Vamparc cannon, but Zeta quickly overtakes him, tearing one of his arms off and knocking him out!
Outside, Ironhide and Bumblebee are seeking cover when Ultra Magnus, Springer and Kup find them! Ironhide appeals to Magnus, who explains he's seen the evidence and knows that Zeta Prime is no good. He just questions his choice of allies. With the talking over, the group resumes fighting, taking out one more Omega Destructor.
Inside the Citadel, the battle continues as Megatron takes on Zeta. The fight is furious, but in the end Megatron prevails! Just as Orion calls for Ratchet and his engineering teams to enter, Megatron betrays him and blasts a hole through his chest before sending him falling into a dark pit below!
This issue of "Autocracy" is unusual in the series in that it's almost all action with very little talking or philosophy getting tossed around. It's pretty much a straightforward fire fight leading up to Megatron's betrayal. I pretty much knew Megatron's plan as soon as I saw him and Orion jumping in together. This thought was solidified when I saw Orion taking the first shots at Zeta. One can argue that he has more emotionally invested in this battle, and that's why he fought Zeta first, but in terms of the story I knew it was basically to weaken him to the point where he wouldn't be able to stand up to Megatron. Mind you, I'm not saying any of this is bad. In fact, had Megatron not betrayed Orion and just made nice at the end of the victory I would've been sorely disappointed. Megatron is a schemer, and he wants power. He's not going to let a pesky thing like an alliance get in the way of that!
Another comment I have has to do with the dialogue in this issue. For most of the issues we've seen, a lot of the conversation has been rather formal since most of the characters speaking were "leader" characters such as Zeta or Megatron. However, this time out we get a bit more dialogue from Ironhide thanks to his time on the battlefield. It's very clear that Dille wrote Ironhide as if he were the Ironhide from the original G1 series complete with his Southern drawl with heavy use of contractions. This is the "voice" I always hear Ironhide in, so to see him written like this was a joy.
The art in this issue was really spectacular. I love the way Ramondelli can make any scene bright or dark look ominous and scary. His use of angles can be grand and sweeping (such as the scene where the Decepticon Seekers swoop in) or tense and almost claustraphobic (such as the scene where Ironhide and Bumblebee are hiding behind cover). Ramondelli's use of color is also very vibrant in this issue. This is most apparent in the fight between Zeta Prime, Orion and Megatron. The last shot of Zeta's head blowing up is intense!
I was also very happy to see that his version of Ultra Magnus from the past is heavily based on his G1 design, leaning less towards his current design in the "More than Meets the Eye" title.
"Autocracy" #8 is an action packed issue with cool character moments, awesome action and of course a bit of betrayal. Now that the Decepticons are in a near defenseless Iacon, I will be very interested to see where the story goes next!