(IDW – 2017)
Writer: John Barber
Art: Fico Ossio
Colors: Sebastian Cheng
Letters Tom B Long
Regular Cover: Tradd Moore & Felipe Sobreiro
One of the REVOLOUTIONARIES is M.I.A following Mayday’s (Ayana Jones) recent team up with ROM the Space Knight to lead her fledgling team into battle against Major Bludd and the Oktober Guard after a strange artefact released Dire Wraith energies in Verenya Schleteva. Now in REVOLOUTIONARIES #2 Mayday’s team sets out to rescue Action Man and the find mysterious Talisman, along with a little help from the diminutive visitors from Microspace, the Micronauts! Their mission will cause them to lock swords with the all-new Storm Shadow, and she’s not someone who backs down without a fight!
Spinning out from IDW Publishing’s epic Revolution cross-over, Revolutionaries #2 from the all-star REVOLUTION team John Barber and Fico Ossio continues the Reconstruction of the shared IDW / Hasbro Universe. The newly united world of the Transformers, G.I. JOE, ROM, and Micronaut comic book titles forms the backdrop for the adventures of the brand new Revolutionaries team: comprised of the war veteran Transformer Kup, the special agent Action Man, their G.I JOE team-leader Mayday, and the ancient Cybertronian sleeper Blackrock who still thinks he’s human!
Revolutionaries #2: Enter the Shadow finds Action Man trapped on the Moon, confounded by a bizarre message in the lunar dust, and taking a leaf out of Matt Damon’s book to deal with his predicament. But seeking refuge inside a derelict Cobra base unearths yet more mysteries for Action Man, and the base isn’t quite as abandoned as it seems either! Meanwhile, back on Earth at the Pacific Science Centre in Washington, Mayday, Kup, and Blackrock have tracked down the Micronauts, space pirate Oziron Rael, thrill-seeking Space Glider Phenelo-Phi, Space-Warrior Acroyear, Orbital Defender Larissa, a stolen sentient Biotron unit, and Oz’s witty first mate, the small robot Microtron, to help them locate Action Man and the Talisman. It’s not long before they overcome their barriers of language and embark on a rescue mission to save their friend and require the Talisman so Mayday can restore her G.I JOE team mates back to their human forms.
John Barber’s intricately plotted script skillfully balances this issues heady mix of frenetic action and exposition to drive the narrative along at a cracking pace. There’s lots here for long-term fans to enjoy, Barber’s attention to detail and characterization is as exemplary as ever, and there’s enough background info – including a handy Roll Call of character bios – as well so that newcomers don’t feel left out of the action either. The story also blends in neatly with events over in G.I JOE #1 and Micronauts #9 as well, further highlighting how Revolutionaries slots into the new unified range of IDW titles. I really like how – just like with ROM last issue – the Micronauts are not just one-off guest stars because they are still stranded on Earth post Revolution, but are actually integral to the overall plot of this issue, and its great to see them fighting alongside the Revolutionaries.
Mayday’s team is also taking shape and beginning to bond as they work together to save Action Man, there’s some nice flourishes of humor as well peppered throughout this issue, particularly when Kup makes his Universal Greeting to the Micronauts and their reaction to him is priceless! Mayday is growing more confident in her role as leader, Kup is a no-nonsense seasoned warrior, Blackrock is clearly going to be the team’s strategist, while Action Man more than proves his credentials in this issue as the world’s greatest special agent when he confronts a former ally! Together they make a great team and I look forward to seeing how the dynamic between them develops over time.
Revolutionaries #2 is packed with big-action set-pieces that really showcases Fico Ossio’s superb artwork to the max. Dynamic page layouts are the order of the day, Action Man’s peril and the dazzling backdrop of the lunar surface are stunningly realized, and things even get a tad sinister on entering the old Cobra base. The initial meeting of the Revolutionaries and the Micronauts is also deftly handled, but it is when the action brings everyone to the Cobra base on the Moon to fight Baron Iron Blood, Storm Shadow, and co, that Fico Ossio delivers some truly spectacular action sequences that quite literally kick the door down. The colors by Sebastian Cheng feel gloriously vivid and animated; brining added drama and intensity to the bombastic action, and the concise lettering by Tom B Long ensures the dialogue springs effortlessly from the page.
The issue races towards an explosive resolution, it seem the Talisman might yield as many questions as it does answers, both for heroes and enemies alike, but there’s only one person who can unlock its secrets.
With its grand scope and scale, impressive ensemble of colorful characters, spectacular artwork, and eye-catching cover by Tradd Moore and Felipe Sobreiro Revolutionaries #2 is pure pedal to the metal storytelling from John Barber, Fico Ossio, and Sebastian Cheng. It firmly establishes the dynamic nuances of this new team and its place in the IDW Universe, and on the strength of this issue it looks like we are going to be in for one hell of a ride!
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.