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transformer Dissolution Part 5: Modes of Production

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    «The Transformers:Lost Light #5» "Dissolution Part 5:Modes of Production"Publisher IDW PublishingFirst published May 10, 2017Cover date April 2017Written by James RobertsArt by Jack LawrenceColors by Joana LafuenteLetters by Tom B. LongEditor Carlos GuzmanContinuity IDW continuityChronology Current eraRung's purpose is revealed at last as the Functionist Council's plan enters its endgame.Contents1 Synopsis2 Featured characters3 Quotes4 Notes4.1 Continuity notes4.2 Real life references4.3 Errors4.4 Other trivia4.5 Soundtrack4.6 Covers (4)4.7 Advertisements5 External links SynopsisOn Necroworld, Nightbeat requests a psychiatric session with Rung. Rung is hesitant, having retired from the profession, but as it turns out, Nightbeat doesn't actually want to talk about himself at all—the "session" is an excuse to get Rung to talk about his own problems. Rung doesn't even resist; he is soon telling Nightbeat everything, confiding that, since his retirement, he has never felt less necessary. When Nightbeat asks if psychiatry had always been Rung's calling, Rung reveals that he has recently learned something new about his own past, something he had long since forgotten thanks to information creep... he has learned what he was for.In the Vector Sigma chamber deep inside Functionist-controlled Cybertron, the Autobots confront the Functionist Council, and stare in horror as Six-of-Twelve uses the Matrix built into his head casing to suspend Rodimus in a beam of agonizing energy. Familiar with the sensation of Matrix energy, Rodimus claims that it is not the real Matrix, but Six merely claims to have bent it to his will, as he does all things. To force the Council into standing down, the native Rung has Ratchet pretend to threaten his life; given Rung's importance to their mysterious plan, the Council has no choice but to let the Autobots go. The Autobots and Rung take the matter transporter back to the surface, but not before Rung delivers one last stinging barb to the Council: as they have discovered, it is possible to activate Vector Sigma without the key they all transform and combine into, which means that, just like they always claimed about him, their alternate mode is a useless ornament. Planet-destroying moon? That's new.In Adaptica, Megatron continues to co-ordinate the Anti-Vocationist League's counter-attack against Luna 2, which is in the process of razing the city with its tractor beams. His display of leadership reminds Roller of his old friend Orion Pax, whose fate in the Functionist Universe he wonders about. Megatron doubts that Orion is still alive—if he were, he would almost certainly be part of the Anti-Vocationist League—and Roller is forced to agree, as he has been trying Pax's personal frequency and had no response. As Luna 2's beams intensify and begin ripping buildings to shreds, Megatron confirms that all surviving refugees have been evacuated and orders the AVL to stand down and join them in escaping. Once he and Terminus are the only two left in the building, however, Terminus blocks his exit, insisting that they take a moment to talk now that they are alone. Terminus tells Megatron that he believes the two of them should stay in the Functionist universe to help in the constant fight against the Council; Megatron refuses, insisting that he needs to make amends in their home universe, but before they can argue any further, Luna 2's beams begin ripping the AVL's statue-headquarters to pieces. Caught in the beams' pull, Megatron grabs the wall and fights to hold on...Back on Necroworld, the repaired Cyclonus watches as Brainstorm successfully reverses the effects of Killmaster's wand to summon Swerve and Ten back from the "pocket prison" it displaced them to. Whirl arrives with Tailgate a moment later, as Brainstorm sets about tracking down the exact location of said prison, and gets very excited by what he discovers.On Cybertron, at Rung's suggestion, Rodimus's team uses the matter transport to get aboard the Functionist Council's floating ship-headquarters, The Cog. After defeating the guards, they seize control of the giant vessel and set course for Adaptica, after which, now that they finally have a moment to breathe, Rodimus asks Rung to explain everything. Concurrent with Rung's revelations to Nightbeat back on Necroworld, Rung at last reveals his true purpose: his body is designed to manufacture photonic crystals, the storage crystals used to contain bodiless sparks for use in cold construction. After years of study, the Council wound up inadvertently discovering this when the janitor cleaning Rung's cell, Sweep, discovered some of the crystals littering the floor, having been spontaneously generated by Rung in response to the mental trauma of endless torture. The Council had always touted cold construction as heretical, but as with all things, they twisted this new discovery to fit their religious interpretation of the world; if a Transformer possessed the ability to generate photonic crystals, they reasoned, then that must mean that Primus actually endorsed cold construction, and so they would embrace it too. They forced Rung to generate countless crystals, but Six-of-Twelve proved unable to use the captured Matrix to generate any sparks to fill them, and so they turned to Vector Sigma instead, using an ununtrium drill to easily cut through the wall surrounding it. Upon discovering that their key mode was not required to activate the mega-computer, the Council put their plan in motion, concocting a phony story about Rung's alt mode that would not contradict the narrative they had fed the public for millions of years. The Council, Rung concludes, have decided that their own function is Functionism itself, and they will use the materials harvested by Luna 2 together with his crystals and the sparks from Vector Sigma to cold-construct an army of new Transformers that will sweep across the galaxy to spread the Functionist gospel by exterminating every race that does not serve a function in the eyes of Primus—or in other words, every single race other than Cybertronians. On Necroworld, Anode bursts into the medibay, where Velocity and Kaput are repairing the wounds Tailgate inflicted on Fangry. She tells everyone she is looking for Lug... but nobody has any idea who she is talking about. Anode explains, and in response to her story, the medical staff pulls up security footage of her emerging from her stasis pod—alone. Crushing realization begins to dawn, but it takes a consultation of the names on the Necrobot's monument to the Disappeared before Anode is willing to accept it: Lug was never there, and was, in fact, only a hallucination she experienced due to timesickness.Back aboard the Cog, Rung directs everyone to abandon ship while he sets it on collision course with Luna 2, in order to destroy the moon and set the Council's plan back decades. Before anyone leaves, Brainstorm makes contact via Rodimus's communicator to deliver a revelation of his own: Killmaster's "pocket prison" is located back in the Autobots' home universe, meaning they can use the wand—supercharged with temporal energy—to teleport Necroworld back home. Rodimus instructs Rung to put his plan on temporary hold so that the Autobots can use the moon's teleporter to get themselves back to Necroworld... but Rung refuses! They cannot risk a delay; if the Autobots want to go home, Rung grimaces, they're going to have to go through him! Featured charactersCharacters in italic text appear only in flashback.(Numbers indicate order of appearance.) Autobots Decepticons Functionists OthersRung (1)Nightbeat (2)Drift (3)Rodimus (4)Chromedome (10)Rewind (12)Ratchet (13)Minimus Ambus (22)Megatron (23)Swerve (27)Brainstorm (29)Tailgate (31)Whirl (32)Velocity (37)Kaput (39)Nautica (40)Fangry (36)Rapidfire (38)Twelve-of-Twelve (5)Six-of-Twelve (6)One-of-Twelve (7)Ten-of-Twelve (8)Four-of-Twelve (9)Three-of-Twelve (15)Eleven-of-Twelve (16)Five-of-Twelve (17)Two-of-Twelve (18)Seven-of-Twelve (19)Eight-of-Twelve (20)Multiple Functionaries (33)Sweep (34)Nine-of-Twelve (41) Clicker (11)Functionist Universe Rung (14)Various AVL members (21)Roller (24)Terminus (25)Functionist Univere Anode (26)Ten (28)Cyclonus (30)Anode (35) Quotes"Rung. I know you. I know when you're troubled. And I also know that you never open up, you never reach out, and you never, ever ask for help. You only engage if you think someone else is suffering."—Nightbeat analyses Rung from the latter's couch."Vector Sigma is unlocked, and your worst suspicions are confirmed... the key is unnecessary. It's a piece of religious paraphernalia. A decoration. You turn—you all turn—into an ornament. Or to put it another way... all hail the Useless Ones."—The Functionist Universe's Rung rips the Council a new one"You remind me of someone—a friend of mine. You met him once, I think. Orion Pax?""Orion. Optimus. Yes. Yes, we know each other quite well.""It wasn't an insult...""No, no. I know it's not an insult. It's the highest compliment."—Roller and Megatron"And to think—to think!—you said it couldn't be done!""On the contrary, I said I was confident you'd find a way to bring them back. In fact, I've been nothing but supportive since I brought you the wand.""Oh. Yeah. Sorry. Thanks to Rodimus, I'm conditioned to expect incomprehension, mockery, and boredom—usually in the space of thirty seconds."—Brainstorm and Cyclonus"Are you okay?""Physically, no. Mentally, also no."—Cyclonus and Swerve"[Killmaster] was quite the innovator. Specialized in bi-locational weaponry: shunt bombs, displacement mines... all sorts of racy cut-and-paste tech.""Yeah, it was his favorite thing after, you know, being a master of killing."—Brainstorm and Whirl"In our universe, the people need to see you punished. Here, they just need you.""But the others... Rodimus. Minimus. They wouldn't understand.""Of all reasons to leave, that is the worst. You're not accountable to them—you're accountable to your conscience.""They are my conscience."—Terminus and Megatron"If it's not the Decepticons, it's the Functionists... we can't help turning our hate outwards."—Rewind"The Necrobot was there to save me. Just me."—Anode fails to find Lug's name on the memorial to the Disappeared, and shatters. Notes Continuity notesWhirl's story to Tailgate at the end of last issue is not spoken of here but it's implied Tailgate knows Cyclonus has been keeping quiet.Rung retired from practicing psychiatry back in More than Meets the Eye #49.Though Six-of-Twelve denies Rodimus's claim that what he is carrying is "not the Matrix," the later revelation that the Council tried and failed to tap the Matrix to produce new sparks lends credence to the allegation, and leads us toward the conclusion we preemptively drew in our notes for issue #2: it is, of course, not the real Matrix at all, because, as we know from the mainstream timeline, Nominus Prime never held it, and only ever carried a facsimile. As the Functionist Universe only diverges from the mainstream timeline at a point in time well after Nominus took power, there's no evidence yet to suggested the real Matrix ever found its way out of the Undergrid, where (per More than Meets the Eye #19) it was hidden by a scientist during the era of Nova Prime.Rodimus knows this because he "carried the Matrix," referring to the brief time it was bonded to him during the "Space Opera" storyline in issues #19-21 of the 2009-2011 ongoing series.Rung scornfully calls the Council a collective "ornament"; this was the classification they applied to his apparently-useless alternate mode, as we learned in More than Meets the Eye #22.Killmaster's preference for displacement weaponry fits in with the crew's predicament, as we know from issue #46 that he created the design for the geobomb the Galactic Council used to shunt Necroworld into the Functionist Universe.Rung raises the specter of information creep when discussing his early years, a condition introduced in More than Meets the Eye #31.Back in issue #1, we saw Rung unexpectedly retch into his hand and stare in alarm at the contents of his palm. It's obvious now that he was producing a crystal for the first time, "a physiological response" to the "intolerable psychological burden" of Skids' death.Upon seeing the crystals, Drift recalls his dream from issue #1. He had mentioned in issue #2 that, in the vision, it was "raining," but that what was falling from the sky was "too heavy, too hard" to be rain; it turns out it was crystals.As noted in a footnote, it was in More than Meets the Eye #38 that, thanks to the janitor Sweep, the Functionist Council discovered what Rung was for, and threatened to kill him. Rung notes that his taunting in that issue, trying to get One-of-Twelve to pull the trigger, was genuinely an attempt to martyr himself.Fans copped to the truth about Lug pretty early on. If you go back and read over every previous issue of Lost Light, you'll notice nobody other than Anode ever speaks to her, since she's not actually there. Additionally, back in issue #1, when the Necrobot arrives to save the pair, we see Anode reaching for Lug's hand just before their force field gives out–but not actually making contact with her. All this means that Kaput's happening by to rescue the impaled Anode in issue #2, and her thusly not dying as a result of Tailgate's tantrum at Fangry, was down to pure, random chance. Ouch.Speaking of Fangry, Kaput mentions he'd come across the guy outside left for dead. Even though Rapidfire is at the bedside, it's clear that neither he nor any other Decepticon in #2 bothered to get help! When they decided Fangry wasn't worth tangling with Tailgate, they meant it! Cyclonus hadn't reported it either, so he's covering for Tailgate. The panel of Brainstorm and Cyclonus hearing Rodimus squeal is a direct callback (and third in the Rule-of-Three joke structure) to Rodimus hearing Brainstorm and Nightbeat do it in #3. Back in More than Meets the Eye #38, Rewind's justification for shooting the yet-to-be-activated Megatron–one of the actions essentially creating the Functionist Universe in the end–was that sacrificing Cybertron to the Functionist dystopia would spare the rest of the universe from becoming collateral damage of the Autobots' and Decepticons' endless war. But if the Council's plans revealed here were to succeed, that devastation (and the ensuing backlash against Cybertronians by the rest of the galaxy) would prove not to have been prevented at all - only delayed. All this has happened before... Real life referencesThis issue takes its title from the Marxist concept of "modes of production."Rewind calls the Council's plan to spread Functionism across the galaxy a "crusade," evoking the real-life Crusades, a series of religious wars that took place during the medieval era, mostly consisting of Western Europeans going over to the Near East and trying to conquer it for themselves. ErrorsThe members of the Functionist Council are not easy to quickly identify, as their colours do not precisely match their previous appearance in issue #35 (but we won't call that an error, since both Six and Nine have consistently been shown to have new colour schemes throughout this arc). That said, the robot we've identified as Four-of-Twelve is miscoloured somewhere along the way; he's got a red head with a grey torso and purple cape on page 2, but his head is yellow on page 4. He was yellow in issue #35, so we'll assume that's the color he's supposed to be. Additionally, Twelve-of-Twelve has gone from being the teal he was in Parts 1 and 2 of this story to a bright green.In the flashback to issue #37, Sweep is brown with red optics as opposed to his blue colour scheme and optics from that issue. Other triviaOriginally solicited for release in April, this issue continues IDW's ongoing series of delays and arrives in the second week of May.It's still not totally clear what Rung's alt-mode is, given that he's still perfectly capable of creating photonic crystals in robot mode. SoundtrackFor all of "Dissolution":"Neither Here Nor There" by Lost in the TreesFor this issue alone:"Just For a Second" by Orlando"Of Up and Coming Monrachs" by Pedro the Lion"All of the Ants Left Paris" by Tarwater Covers (4)Regular cover: The Functionist Council, by Jack Lawrence and Joana LafuenteSubscription cover A: Anode reaches for the bloom of sentio metallico, by Nick Roche and Josh BurchamSubscription cover B: A pair of Functionaries stand beneath The Cog, by Alex Milne and Josh PerezRetailer incentive cover: Rodimus, Magnus, Nautica, and Drift, by Jin Kim; part of a series of incentive covers by Kim for April's Transformers titles. AdvertisementsLost Light #6"The Hasbro Tribune" editorial page promoting April's Hasbro Universe titles, including this issue, G.I. Joe #5, Micronauts: Wrath of Karza #1, Optimus Prime #6, Revolutionaries #5, and Till All Are One #9.Jem and the Holograms #26Micronauts: Wrath of Karza #1Judge Dredd: The Blessed Earth #1Atomic Robo Presents: Real Science AdventuresFree Comic Book Day 2017 (which had, uh, already passed by the time this issue shipped late...)IDW Yokai Watch comic book (back cover) External linksPreviewRetrieved from "http://tfwiki.net/mediawiki/index.php?title=Dissolution_Part_5:_Modes_of_Production&oldid=1207480" Category: Lost Light issues
     

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