Tuesday, 1 September 2015

Transformers - Spotlight: Ultra Magnus

This is one of the best uses of an old character by Furman during his IDW tenure, an imaginative recasting of the character from brave warrior and dependable lieutenant to free-lancing galactic lawman. It's a smooth, dynamic reinvention and it helps that there's a trace of wit and self-awareness to the guy - quite where the comedy super-serious take came from I don't know. Here, Magnus is resourceful and devout but not quite unbending to the point of stupidity.

Similarly smart is the use of Scorponok as a suitably roving techno-pirate, roving from world to world, leeching from alien worlds to create hybrids based on Cybertronian science. It's maybe a bit arch that his current base is Nebulos and his current partner in crime is Nebulon businessman Zarak; the tone tells us that this isn't going to pan out as resulting the Headmaster process even with the reference to Cybertronian enhancements. But as clumsy bluffs go it's amiable and produces a couple of interesting moments.

Add in a decent cameo by Swindle in his classic Huggy Bear wheeler-dealer personality and it all adds up to a fun enough read.