Monday, October 29, 2007

Incredible Change-Bots
by Jeffrey Brown

Did you ever like Transformers? Do you think, as cool as they were, they were kinda silly, too? Well, if so, you will probably dig "Incredible Change-Bots". It pokes all kinds of fun at the Robots In Disguise while never being truly dismissive. You've got villainous robots that can't hit the broad side of a barn, Big Rig always pausing battles to set up his trailer, robots making out, a Change-Bot who "incredible changes" into a bag of popcorn, and lots of other very funny things.

Note: I think it helps the humor if you read it out loud with the kind of earnest goofiness that the text implies. The lazer beams effects are written as "bew! bew! bdew!" which is the sound you made when playing with Transformers as a kid. Yes, you did. If only i could do a Soundwave voice...

The art is, like the subject matter, superficially child-like, but with some subtlety that you might not notice at first glance. It looks like the coloring is done with markers? I don't know my art tools well enough to say for sure. It's very vibrant and engaging, regardless how it's done.

The story: If you know the "origin story" of Transformers, this is pretty close. The mechanistic planet Electronocybercircuitron is ruled by a two-party system. Just like the USA, both of these parties are populated by self-absorbed jerks who care only about the accumulation of power, and society suffers as a result. They ruin their planet and rocket off to Earth. The battle continues here!

I laughed a whole lot while reading this comic. The characters are great, the action is crazy, and it all moves at a nice clip. I think i read the whole thing in a little over an hour, and have dipped into it a couple times since. It's one i'll definitely share with friends, and i recommend it to anyone who played with Transformers, or who just wants a good laugh.