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Comics Today's Date:

They Came From The '80's:
reviews by Mish'al Samman

Just when you think you've seen it all, they pile more on. This month's comic run was no exception to the rule. Not only did I get a bundle of comics, but also I got a BUNDLE of comics!

Robotech #0:
I was never a fan of the black and white books printed long ago. So this will be my first experience with Robotech on paper. Does it live up to expectation? You betcha!

Zero issues are usually a curse, because they tend to be junk like posters, sketches of upcoming issues and the like with little back story to accompany it, and pages of everyone and their mom telling you how excited they are to be doing the book.

But this issue #0 is a must have, with twelve pages of a pretty cool History of Ray Fokker, and every girl's dream boy Rick Hunter in a story that should be taking place shortly after Macross. Rick is still a Captain, and he is mischievously testing the new YF-4 in battle. The second half of the story takes a trip down memory lane to 1999, six months before the "incident." Okay, and then there's an afterword by series writer Tommy Yune talking about how excited he is to be doing the book.

You going to get into Robotech again? Do not miss this one!"

Robotech #1
With the "Macross Incident" shortly at hand, we follow the story of Ray Fokker after Rick hunter receives a letter from his friend. Set up more clearly in #0, Ray and Rick grow up in a flying circus. Ray decides to go join the military during this time of war between countries.

Establishing that Ray can never keep a wingman for more than a mission in this book, we get to see why. So Admiral Hayes on the USS Kenosha is following an Oscar Class Russian sub in the south Pacific in belief that it has been sold to another country. Coolness reveals that this sub is commanded by non other than the lovable heavy accented Captain Gloval. The events lead up to an aerial firefight, the crash landing, and a surprise intro of a new foe. Great art and effects, and animated cell-like coloring. Unfortunately, no Valkyries yet.

Why not start another 80s collection? I know you want to.

Masters of the Universe #1
Into the dungeons of doom we go. While Skeletor struggles to find out how to obtain the powers of the elders, Evil Lyn is watching and plotting in the background of Snake Mountain. Months later, we follow Orko through the forest as he sulks at the lack of wizardry skills he once had on another planet. He stumbles into an abandoned temple in the middle of the forest and finds a sharded crystal. The story shifts back to the capital, and Man at arms is lecturing Prince Adam about the responsibilities of being He-Man, and trouble breaks loose with a fire, who will come to save the day?

Although the artwork is good, the story is right smack dab in the middle somewhere. It does offer a new flavor in the 80s comeback. Instead of bogging the first issue down with how He-Man is He-Man and why, it assumes you've been watching Cartoon Network.

They set you up with a new story, and a sinister plot that Evil Lyn is brewing. Maybe her eyebrows changing color means something.

Transformers: Armada #5
A Minicon is stuck in a car compactor after trying to hide from some humans while trying to find some communications parts in the unfortunate vehicle, and shortly afterwards he is saved by his other Minicon friends. Coming back to their headquarters they turn on a TV, and see the havoc Megatron has unleashed in Science City, and an old buddy of theirs "Sparkplug" is in that transmission. And in other events, Megatron and his cronies are at a standoff with Optimus and fellows, when Megatron uses all his captured Minicons for himself the autobots stand no chance.

A good wrap up of the last 3 issues where the typical Sizing up takes place between the two leaders, and of course the traditional speeches before the pounding. One may still find the children aspect as a bit hard to swallow, but one will get used to it… I think we all wished we were in their shoes, and maybe I'm just jealous.

Transformers: The War Within #3
Decepticons are attacking IACON the Autobot fortress, Prime is lost somewhere in the center of Cybertron with Decepticons on his trail, and Grimplocks got a special mission that he is sure to not like. Prime is slowly finding the answers to his questions, but still doesn't understand his significance. Megatron seems to know much more than you would expect about the matrix, but is it delusion or fact?

While this series is starting to impress more and more, you may find the series to have some pretty surprising hypotheses running about in those circuits. An age-old question I often torment myself with… Unicron?

G.I.JOE Frontline #2
With Hawk wounded, and barely making a break for the coast, the Dreadnoks look like they have lost our heroes and Cobra Commander is not too happy about it. Destro makes his way and relieves the Aussies by taking matters into his own hands as intel is gathered secretly from the Jugglers in order to pinpoint the location of the Joes, and their special package.

I have mixed feelings about this title as a whole. It takes place either as G.I.Joe is being disbanded, or shortly around that time with this story as the last official Op.

Bringing Hama and Jurgens into the mix once again is music to anyone's ears, but too many weird and just plain unbelievable things are happening in this book, that makes you want to slap someone. Too many abbreviations for stuff you have no clue about, and too many code words for stuff that you wouldn't care about. When the last series ended there was all that Ninja stuff, Brainwave Scanner and too many plots twists to keep straight. This issue in particular seems to be a boasting contest on who knows more military terms. Grab Money Daily*?

<*Get My Drift>

Battle of the Planets #5
The conclusion of the two parter brings a good mix of character, story, and old school G-Force humor, and romance to the pages of this issue. G-Force is on a mission to piece together the murder of 3 extremely wealthy business tycoons; Mark and Jason are in a bind when the office Mark is in explodes. Princess, and Tiny are no exception as a bunch of Spectra agents are raiding one of the murdered men's houses looking for his daughter. And Kyops, is home alone trying to crack some code.

Setting up many facts about this ongoing series, this issue is filled with answers to Questions left unanswered way back in Issue #3. The shadowed prisoner will probably be one of the more interesting villains this series will have. One will ultimately like the style that these kids are… Super-Heroes in the guise of Secret Agents, in the guise as Rock Stars. What a life!

Mish'al Samman

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