(a) Jack Lawrence
Spoiler Warning: this review will contain mild spoilers for Lost Light Issue #1. Why not take a moment to read my review of the launch issue to help get yourself up to speed.
Issue 2 of Transformer Lost Light picks up seconds after the end of Issue 1 as Rodimus, Megatron and the crew of Lost Light begin to realise that they have committed the ultimate adventuring mistake and split the party!
The advance party lead by Rodimus have teleported to Cybertron in an attempt to recover their stolen ship, only to find it’s the wrong one! The wrong Cybetron!
As is often the case in More than Meets the Eye / Lost Light technology doesn’t quite function as it should and a mishap with a reconstructed Teleporter sees the team shunted into an alternate dimension, a one where the 4 Million Year Autobot / Deception Civil War never happened!
But this Cybertron is no Utopia, it’s a totalitarian state ruled over by the Functionalist Council. The Functionalists are an Ultra-Orthodox ruling elite from pre-War Cybertron who believe in a rigid social caste and class system where an individual’s position in the social hierarchy is pre-determined when they are forged / born and based only on the thing that particular robot turns in to, AKA their alt mode. The law is absolute and there is only one punishment for fraternising outside your social class, having an unauthorised or obsolete Alt Mode and that punishment is death!
So it’s out of the frying pan and into the fire for our valorous heroes.
Back on the ominously titled Necworld things aren’t faring much better for the rest of the team. A brawl erupts between Tail Gate and Fangry when the renegade Decepticon tries to establish a place on top of the Lost Light’s social pecking order by bullying Tail Gate’s companion Cyclonus. What will the consequences of Tail Gate’s decision to use the melee to test the limit of his new found superpowers be for Tailgate, his friends and foes?
Roberts and Lawrence dial back the pace in this second issue to give the story some chance to breathe, get the key players on the board and revisit some of the classic themes which have permeated MTMTE and now Lost Light. From the political metaphors of the ruthless Functionalists to the reflections on the platonic and romantic relationships between key cast members MTMTE / Lost Light is at its strongest when it uses the cartoonish antics of everyone’s favourite Robots in Disguise as a story telling tool to reflect on the human condition and comment on everyday society.
Over at DC the Flintstones has generated a lot of buzz in the last year for its ability to present social commentary and satire through the prism of a family friendly cartoon franchise. This is all well earned praise and rightly so, it’s a great book but this is not new territory for James Roberts and his collaborators and this second issue of Lost Light is once again proof of that.
Final Thoughts: A solid follow up to a home run first issue balancing key plot and character beats and setting the table for what’s next. B+