YO JOE! – First Strike #4

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Title:  First Strike #4

Publisher:  IDW Publishing

Writers:  David A. Rodriguez, Mairghread Scott

Artists:   Max Dunbar 

Story Rating: 10 

Art Rating:  10 

Color Rating:  10 

Overall Rating: 10 

IDW Publishing pushes the conflict between man and machine to new heights, as the mission to eradicate the Cybertron people is nearly complete. Baron Ironblood and his unit of evil have outsmarted the most sophisticated alien race ever encountered by humans. The Autobots could not have predicted the outcome of their own failure.  

Mairghread Scott and David A. Rodriguez take it upon themselves to establish the politics and mindset to the robot forces on Cybertron. Scarlett and the Joes are placed under the Cybertron council and debate with Starscream and Elita One the political heads of robotic affairs. Elita One wishes to execute all humans whether good or evil for she believes they are all a cancer to their cybernetic society. 

Scarlett begs the council on behalf on the Joes to listen to her pleas of imminent doom and her position in the war effort. She is the only one aware and capable of taking down her greatest foe and former mentor Joe Colton otherwise now known as Baron IronBlood. The council and Autobots refuse to listen to the humans and lock them away in jail cells awaiting final judgment. 

Deep underground in the tunnels of Cybertron Baron IronBlood and his Cobra unit cover their tracks by placing traps for the robotic counterpart. They head closer to the planet’s core with each passing hour pursuing deeper into the heart of Cybertron. 

The Autobots investigate and underestimate the Cobra intruders as they fall into the numerous traps hidden in the tunnels. Autobot Ironhide and Sunstreaker fall in the line of duty under the legions of Cobra ninjas and automated sentry guns. 

Max Dubar keeps up the elegant and critical art inside this impactful comic book. Bright colors highlight the characters designs and action. The towering robots tower over the humans with sophisticated designs and solid colors of red, blue, purple, pink, and yellow.

 The line work supports the characters both large and small as everything has a complete shape and outline. The background supports the action and character with similar line work and basic shapes. Shading in the comic has little appearance for the focus of the comic is color delivering bright tones and hues creating a stunning visual. The action carries movement from each panel projecting the eyes forward to complete the story faster in one smooth motion.

The conclusion carries depth and emotional impact for the Autobots and the Council of Cybertron. The cybernetic robots realize the error in underestimating a technologically inferior species. The questions that remain are how will the Cybernetic counsel respond and retaliate against Cobra Command? Will the Cybertron Council free the Joes from incarceration and aid in the fight against Baron Iron Blood? Will the Autobots reach the Baron and his unit in time before the planet core is destroyed? Everything will be answered in further issues of First Strike as the war on Cybertron echoes throughout the stars.

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