Featuring the dinobots, Transformers: Robots in Disguise #8 takes time to reflect on some of the more popular transformers in the franchise. On the down side, it does this by trading in any developments from the previous issues.
The official description from IDW:
DINOBOT MONTH! Guess who’s back on Cybertron? SLAG, SLUDGE, SNARL, and SWOOP—and they’re as mad as ever! IRONHIDE leads them deep into the Cybertronian wilderness searching for lost AUTOBOTS… but what they find might be the greatest danger of all!
Now, even the most partial of Transformers Fans has a soft spot for the Dinobots. Following on from Decepticon Month, Robots in Disguise #8 does a great deal of shedding light onto the Dinobots. They’re still stubborn and aggressive, but their integration into a peaceful Cybertron sheds plenty of new light. The fact that they retain their earth ‘dinobot’ forms, and the unrest it causes amongst other transformers, is a prime example.
Likewise, the title also takes time to show the wilderness of Cybertron. This is something that isn’t always seen too often – especially the Cybertronian “wildlife”. Cybertron is often shown as a very crowded planet, so its good to see some quieter areas that add tension. As the Autobot team track down the missing Aerialbots, the still scenes within this issue create for some more tense moments.
My main problem with Robots In Disguise #8 is that it does very little to follow on from the previous issue. There is still a fair amount of political intrigue between Bumblebee, Starscream and Metalhawk, sure, but its nowhere near the detail and depth explored in previous issues.
I like that the title takes time to show different groups, from the Decepticons to the Dinobots, but it does this at the cost of continuity and plot. What happened to Turmoil? Or the time machine? So many questions left unanswered and, worse of all, not even mentioned. Bumblebee at no point cares to comment on the investigation into Turmoils ship or his arrival; is this even set in the same time frame?
On the other hand, this does keep the issues as successful one-shots, albeit with any satisfying concluding endings (a cliffhanger doesn’t count as satisfying if you don’t follow it up). The references to Megatron, specifically the various character’s fear that he still exists, offers another insight into a post-war Cybertron, as do various discussions of the future. Yet it might just be teasing something it can’t deliver.