Unfortunately, I hardly know its context myself; I wasn’t into comics when Transmetropolitan debuted in 1997. I did (and do) have enough hazy awareness of the American comic scene to know that it was absolutely dominated by
Along came Warren Ellis, telling the story of an insane reporter (Spider Jerusalem; what a great name) in an insane city of
So you get the
The artwork is Watchmen crossed with Sam & Max; sharp, simple, recognizable, and filled with parody. Darick Robertson’s art shows an appreciation of the comics medium rarely surpassed; this is one of the few truly cinematic comics out there. Just one of the dizzying situations in volume one: Spider sitting on the edge of a building, laptop in hand, surrounded by half a dozen strippers he’s “rescued” from a mob below, bathed in neon as he
Which demonstrates both the primary strength and the primary weakness of this volume. For 1997, Ellis writes an impressively accurate rendition of the near future. Obviously, we’re not there yet, not will we be (I hope), but the trends he demonstrates feel eerily prescient.
On the other hand, much of this volume feels like wish fulfillment. I mean, seriously, a writer surrounded by sexy,