(IDW Publishing -2016)
Writer: Cullen Bunn
Art: Max Dunbar
Colors: David Garcia-Cruz & Ander Zarate
Letters: Tom B. Long
The search for the Time Travelers begins in Micronauts #5, as the threat of the entropy storm closes in. Captain Oziron “Oz’ Rael and his crew are now prisoners of the Force Commander Baron Daigon, but it seems that Oz knows far more about the Pharoids and their connection to the mysterious entities known as the Time Travelers than even his shipmates could have expected, and with Barron Karza about to strike the secrets of past could soon have long lasting repercussions for the Microspace and Earth.
After last issues flashback issue to Baron Karza’s treacherous rise to power and the courtship of the woman who would become his wife, the Mistress of Spies, Shazrella, writer Cullen Bunn returns to the present day events in Micronauts #5 as Oz and the crew of the Heliopolis face the prospect of torture and eventual execution by The Ministry of Science once Barron Daegon has acquires the information they seek from Oz. It is in these early scenes that we see the bond between space pirate Oziron Rael, daredevil Space Glider Phenelo-Phi, seasoned Space-Warrior Acroyear, Orbital Defender Larissa, and Oz’s sharp witted first mate, the small robot Microtron, really beginning to evolve into something very special, and the great, and often fun, banter they share really helps with polarizing these newly forged relationships between the characters.
They also learn more about Oz’s past, his connection to the Pharoids, and why the Force Commander believes Oz’s dormant abilities could save Microsapce from the entropy storm. However, fooling his captors long enough for them to find a way to escape isn’t going to be easy, especially with Membros, the chief Ministry of Science interrogator, eager to take a more “hands on” approach to Oziron’s interrogation. Cullen Bunn provides some great moments of characterization for Oz and his crew throughout the course of this issue, while also keeping the suspense building right from the outset as Barron Karza plans his next move.
Micronauts #5 also features some great artwork from Max Dunbar as well. From the sweeping display of military might as Baron Karza rallies his forces, to his startling transformation to lead the charge into battle, it is the quieter moments in the cell between Oz and his crew that really pack an emotional punch, and Dunbar’s art excels when the action kicks into high gear at the midway point and all hell break loose. The colors by David Garcia-Cruz and Ander Zarate are glorious rich and vibrant, and their skillful use of tone and shade accentuates the finer points of the action perfectly. Baron Karza’s “enerchange”, the creepy Membros, and the frenetic breakout from the cell, are just some of the many standout moments in this issue.
Micronauts will also be involved in IDW Publishing’s ambitious REVOLOUTION event which will bring ROM, the Transformers, G.I. Jo, M.A.S.K, and the Micronauts together in a one shared universe for the first time, and Micronauts #5 provides a tenuous lead in for this series’ inclusion in IDW’s major bran-wide comic book event .
It’s not long before the crew of the Heliopolis seize their chance to breakout of their cell, retrieve their weapons and their Biotron unit, and make a dash for freedom. Micronauts #5 poses some tantalizing mysteries about Oz’s not-quite-to latent abilities, Karza’s forces reveal a surprising secondary objective in the heat of battle, and the cliff-hanging final moments strike the unwary in the most shocking and unexpected way imaginable.
IDW’s new Micronauts universe is really starting to take shape now, Micronauts #5 is a tautly plotted and exciting issue by Cullen Bunn, with stylish and detailed artwork by Max Dunbar, we are beginning to have a greater sense of what this new Micronaut series, inspired by the classic Marvel series by Bill Mantlo and Michael Golden and the original toy line of interchangeable action figures, will be like as the creative teams new spin on the premise and its characters begins to settle into a cohesive narrative of its own, and I’m looking forward to seeing how Oz and his team mates will feature in REVOLOUTION as the IDW universe range of titles finally converge at last.
Paul Bowler is a self-Confessed Sci-Fi Geek, Doctor Who fan, and Zombie Disposal Expert. He likes movies, comic books, and all things PS3. He likes to write about his interests, would love to write a novel one day, and also enjoys chatting to the many people he has gotten to know on Twitter. When he’s not busy being an Impossible Astronaut, he likes to take a break from his adventures in time and space to enjoy some of his favourite tv shows and movies, preferably with a nice cuppa tea & a sandwich! You can follow him on Twitter @paul_bowler, or find him at his website, Sci-Fi Jubilee.