13th Feb2019

‘Robotech #17′ Review

by Dean Fuller

Written by Simon Furman | Art by Hendry Prasetya, Pasquale Qualano | Published by Titan Comics

Robotech-17-Cover-A

When this book began, I did wonder if there was a place for this in the modern publishing world. Robotech has always been entertaining, be it in cartoon form or previous comic book series, but has had a touch of the ‘one trick pony’ about it. That is, it used to be very formulaic, did what it said on the tin. This incarnation of Robotech, originally mapped out by Brian Wood of course, has proved that you can keep the elements that really work but also need to throw in a few new elements to keep things fresh. A lot of those new elements have come from Simon Furman of course, who is doing great work on this book. But you don’t need me telling you that, you already know.

So, in the absence of the two pages this issue has to explain all the characters and events up to now, I shall give you the broadest of recaps. Admiral Hayes fired a big gun, Captain Hayes made serious errors of judgement , Karl Riber has returned from the dead, and Claudia is being strangled by a clone of Roy. Apart from that, a quiet issue last time round. So, about that big gun. The Grand Cannon was so devastatingly effective that Supreme Commander Dolza himself has decided to bring the entire imperial fleet and destroy not only the SDF-1, but Earth itself. Captain Hayes, who brought the Zentraedi right to Earth’s doorstep, has decided it best to dock at Mars Base and fix things, both mechanical and spirit wise. These are not good times.

Mind you, most of the inhabitants of Macross City aren’t being strangled by a clone, so Claudia wins that one. She also wins her tussle with the clone and escapes, though she is still unaware that Roy isn’t the real deal. Rick, meanwhile, has caught up with Minmei and managed to finally talk to her about their exposure to protoculture, and the effect it may have on her. She seems fine so far, unless being very full of yourself is a side effect, in which case it’s terminal. Again, so much going on we are two thirds into the story and have not even caught up yet with the reappearance of Karl Riber. Just as we are, Claudia alerts everyone that Roy needs to be captured as he murdered Captain Gloval. The clone makes a run for it, escaping in a veritech but with Rick, his ‘brother’ scrambled to chase him down. It ends the way you’d expect, and everyone thinks Roy is dead. The real Roy, still being held captive, makes his move….

Though not as perfect a read as last issue, which was truly outstanding this was still a rollicking ride. More plot squeezed into 27 pages of story than many bigger titles manage in 6 issues. Nothing predictable either, Furman zigs when you think he’ll zag, and zags when you think he’ll zig. Keeps us on our toes. The balance between the human ( and alien) drama and the grand space opera remains perfect. The art was as good as always, lovely clean lines and well laid out, panels paced and placed perfectly. If your monthly budget only extends to 2 or 3 titles, I would definitely recommend this for entertainment and value, regardless of whether you are familiar with Robotech or not.

Great writing, great art, and as a bonus the covers aren’t too shabby either. Robotech, the little series that could.

**** 4/5

Robotech #17 is out now from Titan Comics.

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