Maximum Dinobots #5 - IDW - Comic Book

Note on format: The Non-spoiler Review will be followed by a spoiler Synopsis.


Don’t let the title fool you. Issue #5 is Maximum Shockwave! Grimlock gets some catharsis, but Shockwave owns this issue.

A battle from start to finish, Issue #5 has an explosion or a clobbering on almost every page. Skorponok vs. Shockwave, Shockwave Vs. Grimlock, Dinobots + Hot Rod vs. Scorponock. Ravage and Lazerbeak vs. what must have been a giant ketchup packet….

Good Times.

Resolutions aplenty amidst the chaos though. Stories from Spotlights Shockwave, Grimlock, Soundwave, and Ultra Magnus are all concluded, resolved or at least moved forward. Plus this is the seeming end of the Machination, which as been around since Infiltration, and reuniting with some humans not seen since Devastation.

The art in this issue is a little distracting, Nick Roche’s style is more cartoony, (some of his humans this issue could’ve been guest spots on the Simpsons), and some where there is a black and white comic, maybe a TMNT, that is desperate need of Jamez Riaz’s talents, but in color the images seem dirty and over inked. It wouldn’t be such a big deal but the contrast between the two styles is jarring.

Simon Furman as usual offers a good read from cover to cover, but there isn’t much of a resolution here. This was to be expected really. We knew half the characters were on their way to All Hail Megatron, but even the rest seem to just disperse at the end. Probably just tying up loose ends before moving on to Coda and the upcoming monthly series.

Note to parents, there is a swear in here as well as a splash of blood.


Maximum Dinobots #5 opens with a full page of dead Sludge. Last issue Scorponok, popped up and blew a hole in everyone’s favorite Bronto… Apato… Brachia… Sludgeasauras.

Grimlock ponders how this, much like everything in Maximum Dinobots, is his fault. Shockwave and Skorponok duke it out over who gets to slag the Dinobots. Scorponok wants them for ruining his Machination plans, and Shockwave claims dibs for the thousands of years he found himself being a piece of the scenery thanks to a Dinobot attack.

The rest of the Dinobots decide when two over powered opponents are arguing over who gets to kill you it’s a good time to be some place else. Grimlock resists though, in a moment of uncharacteristic accountability, Hot Rod also elects to stay.

Meanwhile, at Skywatch, the Government’s top secret program to reactivate and lose giant robots, Agent Red is contemplating when to restart the 24 hour timer on the bomb they placed in shockwave’s head, as Skywatch troops move in on the coordinates Shockwave provided for a deactivated Ravage and Lazerbeak. They are not disappointed.

Grimlock goes all E.R. on Sludge trying to revive him, Shockwave turns Scorponok into a fail-master and forces him to surrender. Grim now on the revenge warpath, finds that Shockwave is letting the ex-machination leader escape. Grimlock being the bi-polar rascal that he is, decides to focus his rage on Shockwave, missing entirely that Sludge has returned from the dead.

Then it’s flashback time. Last issue we left Shockwave talking to Soundwave who while still locked in tape deck mode had just been rescued by Ravage and Lazerbeak, who Sky-watch’yer robots go bye-bye, was failing to control due to Soundwave’s jamming signal. We see now that that conversation ended in Shockwave and Soundwave agreeing to a plan to free them selves from Skywatch’s ineffectual bonds and Soundwave’s anachronistic alt mode.

The plan involves getting Skywatch to transmit the code that will keep Shockwave’s head from exploding, so Soundwave can intercept it, and free Shockwave. In return, Shockwave will tell Soundwave how to return to robot mode. (The weapon that immobilized him was of Shockwaves design).

The Monsterbot’s return for the known to be alive 3 Dinobots and offer them a chance to join them in their life of raiding Decepticon flea markets, or whatever it is they do. The Dinobots are dubious.

Meanwhile, Hot Rod, has found the original head of Scorponok, which Scorponok still needs to live. Hunter shows up, and they decide to smash it. However, Scorponok himself arrives and starts trying to turn Hot Rod’s head into a commemorative plate to mark the occasion. (Which he must really regret not having done 3 issues ago.)

The Dinobots, again, decide not to abandon Grimlock, just then Sludge pops up and want’s to know the score. (This dropping into a coma thing must be how he got left behind in the ’86 movie.)

The Dinobots attack Shockwave, but Grimlock tells them to go after Scorponok instead. With just a few seconds left on the clock, Skywatch just can’t resist one more screw up and sends the signal to reset the bomb in Shockwave's head. Soundwave gets it. Relays it to Shockwave. Shockwave tells Soundwave how to break free. Soundwave reactivates Ravage and Lazerbeak. Ravage and Lazerbeak turn some Skywatch soldiers into hamburger, featuring actual blood splatter.

Shockwave stops fighting Grimlock. The whole fight was just for Skywatch’s benefit. Shockwave tries to leave, but Grimlock drops a grenade between them, seeing as they seem to be in an ammo dump, this ends badly. Shockwaves Ultimate fate is unrevealed, but since Grimlock is OK, so there is little reason to think him dead.

The other Dinobots show up to help Hot Rod and defeat Scorponok by severing his original head from its wires. Before they can kill him though, Ultra (wtf are you doing here) Magnus shows up and arrests Scorponok. Magnus suggests they purge the Machination base and get the heck outta Dodge.

Back on an Autobot Ship Hunter watches a repaired Sunstreaker floating in a CR tank. Ratchet informs him that Sunstreaker will be alright, but that he doesn’t know how to remove Hunters headmaster implants. Verity and Jimmy, not seen since Devastation, show up to welcome Hunter. (I want those Autobot pajamas they all have.) Optimus is there, he has a brief conversation with Magnus about how messed up things are on Earth.

Magnus leaves with Grimlock and presumably Scorponok in custody. The other Dinobots are… fixing something, circuit farming? (I missed the first 2 issues could be from there), but they are not with Grimlock the energy cell.

DateApril 17th 2009  
Score 7 stars (7 out of 10)  

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