It has been a wild, fun and crazy ride. In fact, I’d go as far as saying it was like riding the rollercoaster the Steel Phantom for the first time. Unfortunately, all good things come to an end and such is the case with Transformers vs GI JOE by yinzer-writer/artist Tom Scioli and editor John Barber.
I’m sad to see this comic come to an end for many reasons. The first being Tom’s art. There is absolutely no one out there right now that can match his style. I know it’s probably a cardinal sin to admit this but Tom’s art actually got me to appreciate the great Jack Kirby. I so wanted to thank Tom in person for the work he put into this comic but I ended up missing him at a signing at New Dimension Comics. I was on the phone with my parents telling them about my missed opportunity that day, and for some unknown reason, my parents (including my mom who I don’t think ever stepped foot into a comic shop) stopped by and picked me up a signed copy of issue #1. To say the least, I was overjoyed and the comic hangs in my office proudly. When I look at it – it reminds me of a great moment my parents and I shared together, and it was all because of a comic.
The second thing I’m going to miss about this series is the wacky, trippy, crazy fun that filled each issue. Not many comics make me laugh out loud, but this one did. There are a bunch of one-liners that make you feel like you’re watching a ’80s action movie, or remind you of moments in the cartoons where something heroic was said that inspired you as an eight year-old to take on the school-yard bully.
The third thing I’m going to miss is the opportunity that the comic gave me to turn off my mind and just go with whatever zaniness was going on. You can’t over-think this comic. You just need to go with it. Remember that classic GI JOE cartoon episode where Shipwreck saw his buddies melting.
Every issue in this series had that kind of feel to it. You didn’t know what to expect when you turned the page or looked to the next panel. Sometimes things made sense, other times it was like a crazy acid trip of weirdness. It was, in some ways, the perfect embodiment of the cartoons and the beauty of comic book madness and fantasy. Tom and Barber love the source material and it shows.
The series, and this issue in particular, was jammed pack with so much it would take me a book to explain everything that happened. If you haven’t been picking up the issues, grab the trades (I think the third and final one should be out soon).
ROTTING BRAINS gives Transformers vs GI JOE #13…drum roll…5 out of 5 rotten brains.