“Armistice Night”

Writer: Darwyn Cooke

Artist: Dave Stewart

In the afterlife all the warriors of old gather for an annual celebration. General Patton skeleton host the event. The skeletons have competitions of skill and eventually a big fight at the end to determine the next years host. Hitler enters in disguise and blows up the gathering. At the end is the message Make War No More.

“The Hell Above Us”

Writer: Ivan Brandon

Artist: Nic Klein

A WWII submarine gets damaged and stuck on the bottom. The crew die of suffocation except for one. This guy continues on without air food and water for decades. He finally decides to leave and swims to the surface. There he finds another war going on.

“Private Parker Sees Thunder Lizards”

Writer: Jan Strnad

Artist: Gabriel Hartman

Two friends get trapped in a barn in Holland during a German offensive. They reminisce about their youth and getting beat up by bullies. One is a fan of dinosaurs and remembers thinking of the bullies getting eaten by T-Rex. He pictures T-Rex and other dinosaurs attacking the Germans. A cannon shell destroys the barn and American soldiers find him dead but smiling.

This one-shot issue back in 2010 was a fun one. It reminded me of the original series. The stories were just like you would find in the old series. They even bring back the Make War No More saying which was in the old DC war issues. A well-done issue that I wish they could have brought back as a series.


“Mama Nature’s Cold Turkey Mega-Hype!”

Writer: Doug Moench

Artist: Paul Gulacy

Slash Maraud and friends make it to Paris. They find that the shapers are purging the humans because they know of their plans. The group parachute out as Wingo crashes his plane to create a diversion. The group splits up and a big fight ensues. Dr. X and Castagliano successfully mix the antidote. Rex Rumble and Angela take it to the feed ship. They get help from Commander Sarkh who has joined with the humans. The antidote is injected, and the planet goes through a major upheaval. Sarkh distracts Commander Kargh long enough for Slash to kill Kargh. At the beginning of new day only 7 survived as they start a funeral pyre for the fallen. A new future is starting for the Earth.

The big final delivers. A huge action from beginning to end. Naturally they win and save the Earth. Everyone gets his or her moment to shine. Plenty of self-sacrifice and bravery. I really enjoyed this series. A unique premise with very engaging and interesting characters. I loved this eighties fashion time capsule and recommend to anyone looking for a fun and unique read. They just don’t make them like they used to.


“Worm-Warring in the Big Apple!”

Writer: Doug Moench

Artist: Paul Gulacy

Slash and his army have rescued Dr. X and destroyed a DNA soup concentration camp in the process. They continue on to Kansas City and rendezvous with the rest of their gang. We explore the groups various personalities before heading to New York. The city is overgrown with alien vegetation and animals. It also is controlled by the New Wave Nazis. A visit to the destroyed Statue of Liberty reveals that the local resistance has been destroyed. Also, the Nazis are waiting for them. Some of the group is captured to be slowly tortured to death. Fortunately, the Holy Rollers, a group of nuns and priests on roller skates help them out. They arm them and Slash and friends kick Nazis ass. They find the plane that will get them to Paris.

Wow what a wild story. This book just is incredible. Such a wild cast and strange creatures. We also get some fascinating characterizations with all the weirdness. Wild Blue is still very angry at Slash. The airplane was a crazy looking thing. Also, the shapers are heading to Paris for the big final showdown. This is really turning out to be a good investment.


“Halfway to Hyde on the Nulloid Express”

Writer: Doug Moench

Artist: Paul Gulacy

Slash has just recruited the vermin packs in Oakland and now finds out that Dr. X has been taken. Worse is that the shapers are coming. They manage to escape through the subway. Later Wild Blue manages to torture out where Dr. X has been taken. A train called the Nulloid Express runs from Barstow to the shapers northwest DNA plasma processing center. Here humans are tossed in a chemical vat and their DNA is transformed to the shapers needs for terraforming the planet.

Slash and company ambush the train which is operated by the Nulloids. A group of humans that are addicted to a shaper drug that pumps them high on adrenaline. The group manage to rescue Dr. X and free the captive humans. Now they just have to get to Paris.

The story is getting really exciting. Between all the action we get some really good character development. We find out that Blue and Slash had an incident in Mexico where Blue had to probably do something sexual in nature to save Slash. This does bother Slash and puts a barrier to their relationship. I also loved the wacky Nulloids. They were mutant like guys super pumped on adrenaline and bug eyes. A really good issue.


“Squeeze Plays”

Writer: Doug Moench

Artist: Paul Gulacy

Slash and friends find Dr. X and find out how to stop the shaper’s terraforming. The main operation is in Paris at the Eiffel Tower. Dr. X. says that he can inject an antidote plasma to stop the terraforming. Now they need an army and Slash knows where to find one. In San Fransisco he meets an old buddy. Race Castigliano has been working with scientists to find some sort of way for humans to survive. His son Rex Rumble is the leader of the Jackboots. They are a gang in what is known as the vermin packs. These packs are gangs that spend time fighting each other for fun.

Slash finds them fighting in Candlestick Park. He challenges Rex to a fight, and they end up in a draw. Rex decides to join the fight but doesn’t realize some shapers managed to kidnap Dr. X. One stays behinds and impersonates him. The shapers have been contacted and are on their way. At the end they discover the imposter.

This is one cool series. Slash is this cool guy that just exudes testosterone. So does Rex Rumble. The vermin packs have cool names like Zen Hogs, Nitro Punks, Sheik Screamers, and Congo Corsairs. We get some more glimpses into the shapers. They are a decadent bunch that love junk food and rock and roll. They also have a thing about sex with humans. The plan is to now go to New York where a guy has a working airplane. First, I suppose they have to rescue Dr. X and fight off the approaching shapers.


“Damazons and the Family Unit”

Writer: Doug Moench

Artist: Paul Gulacy

Slash Maraud and Wild Blue are confronted by Commander Kargh and shapers while escaping. Slash manages to shoot off the lock to the mutant panda cage causing pandamonium. They escape to Blue’s motorcycle and shoot their way out of Las Vegas. Dr. X is supposed to be in Provo, so they head out that way. Only along the way they run into Angela and her Damazons. The Damazons are a gang of lesbians that hate men. Fortunately, Blue manages to tell them about their mission to find Dr. X and save the world. They decide to help out.

They later come on a group of the Family. The Family are nutjobs that worship serial killers and like to cut people up and use the parts for furniture. They capture one and finds out Dr. X has been captured. So, they go to their HQ which is a recreation of the Bate’s house from Psycho. They attack and make it to the dungeon where they are confronted by a guy in a leatherface mask and chainsaw. They find the body of the guy they were chasing, and Slash deduces the guy with the chainsaw is Dr. X.

Wow big tires on cars. Yes, this is definitely the eighties. This has got to be the most original story I have ever read. The kooky gangs are just nuts. I love this series so far. We find out that Slash hates people but hates the shapers even more and is an ultimate survivor. So that is why he decided to take on this mission. Wild Blue is a great companion to him, and the blue hair is definitely way before its time.


“Beautiful Blues!”

Writer: Doug Moench

Artist: Paul Gulacy

A guy on a motorcycle rescues a man from a dinosaur. Later at night over a campfire the two talk and we find out Earth has been conquered by aliens. They are now terraforming the Earth. The two get into an argument and the motorcycle guy ends up killing the guy he rescued. The guy on the cycle is Stash Maradovitch or as he is called Slash Maraud. He used to be a mercenary and bodyguard to the rich and famous. Now he is going to Las Vegas to see an old acquaintance. A woman named Blue who has blue hair and a zebra pattern jumpsuit.

Blue has a proposition for Slash. She knows of an alien scientist called Dr. X who wants to help reverse the terraforming. Slash will think it over and goes downstairs. While there, a new alien leader has come to replace the current commander. The current leader is bored and has let things go. After killing some of the humans for fun, this convinces Slash to take the job. Only Blue was an alien or shaper because they can shapeshift. Slash kills her and finds the real Blue tied up. The shots attract other shapers and the two blast a hole in the floor and fall on a cage of a giant mutant panda.

Wow is this a time capsule from the eighties. Mullets, Blade Runner trench coats, zebra patterned jumpsuits, big hair and Ray bans. The hero is your typical Snake Plissken type anti-hero. The aliens are shapeshifters that in their real form look like fuzzballs with big black eyes and a mouthful of teeth. We get introduced that these aliens had no problem taking over and did something to degrade the humans. Very few fight back and most seem to be content to wait around until the Earth is fully transformed and they die.

I really love this series. I saw an ad in an old comic issue and thought that it had potential. Surprised I missed it back in the day. A very original series and I look forward to finding out more of this crazy eighties’ future world.


“Chaos Among the Gods”

Writer: Cary Bates

Artist: Walter Simonson

Hercules finds out that the Anti-Ares was the one possessing Kevin. Anti-Ares pounds Hercules into the ground then joins with the other anti-gods. They form one being and go off to attack Olympus. Basil the dog hid away in the flying wing and helps Hercules dig out of the ground. Soon after the gods send lightning bolts to transport Hercules to Olympus. There he finds out the truth of why he was chained to the island for centuries. The gods of Olympus were making themselves perfect and in this they created anti-gods from all their negative energy. They imprisoned them in the island and needed Hercules strength to keep them there. So they drugged him and chained him to the island. Only he finally managed to break free. The anti-Ares possessed Kevin, waiting for the right time to strike.

Hercules is pissed about this and soon after the anti-gods show up. An epic battle ensues with neither getting the upper hand. Hercules uses the enchanted chains to start destroying Olympus. This brings together the gods and anti-gods, but they are powerless against the might of Hercules. The two groups working together merge them back to one. In gratitude for saving them, Zeus sends Hercules back. He finds Jennifer brought back to life and Basil waiting for him. The three head out to explore the post-apocalyptic world.

The final issue comes to a satisfying conclusion. We get the answer to why Hercules ended up chained on the island all those centuries. Why Kevin seemed a bit off. A big battle with Hercules being the one to save the day. Ends on a happy note with Jennifer brought back to life. Along with the dog Basil they can continue exploring the world. Sadly, we never hear again from Hercules and this cool post-WWIII world. DC created a fun idea with their version of Hercules and my favorite genre, post-WWIII. I am glad they managed to tie up the story and we get 12 quality issues to enjoy.


“The Darkside of the Gods”

Writer: Cary Bates

Artist: Walter Simonson

Hercules gets a new suit of armor thanks to the Atomic Knights. In an old car factory, they smelt the alloy. Then it is off to the Knight’s HQ on the western shore of Lake Ontario. Flying the flying wing, Kevin suddenly gets possessed by an evil force and attacks his friends. Hercules and the Knights are thrown out of the plane. Hercules stops Kevin by tossing a large rock into the lake which short circuits the plane.

While this happens, the gods on Olympus watch and wonder about their predicament. Some evil force has trapped Olympus in a temporal storm. Only Hercules can save them, and they shoot a bolt to Earth. It takes over Jennifer and she is now possessed by Athena. She starts to warn Hercules but a giant fire-breathing dragon forms from the campfire. It strikes down Jennifer before Hercules can destroy it. Jennifer is now dead, and Hercules decides to release Kevin from his chains since he thinks the evil is destroyed.

Only Kevin is once again possessed and jumps into the flying wing. Hercules grabs on and the wing crashes in the Mediterranean off the island that Hercules was chained to. Kevin is fully taken over by Ares who brags that he will release the Anti-Gods from the rock that Hercules was chained to.

A lot of stuff happens in this issue. The big event is Jennifer dying which is a surprise. I really liked this character and a brave move to kill her off. The other is Kevin being possessed by Ares. The letters page already informed us this title was being cancelled. So, they set up a big final ending which should give us all the answers for this series.


“Water, Water, Neverwhere!”

Writer: Cary Bates

Artists: Walt Simonson & Bob Layton

Hercules and his friends bury their former companion Dave Rigg at a cemetery in London. Soon after a big explosion of water spouts out of the ground. Hercules manages to throw a streetlamp that cuts a huge trench into the ground and stops the water. They find a survivor that tells he was conducting an experiment on a substance found by the Great Lakes in America. The group decides to go there and warn people about the substance’s danger. Fortunately, some guys at the nearby museum offer to give them a flying wing. Even more fortunately, Kevin can fly it using some power of his that manipulates energy.

The group arrives at Lake Ontario and find it bone dry. They also find some giant Dalmatians and two guys in armor. After a brief tussle they make peace, and we find out about these knights. They are the Atomic Knights and were investigating the compressed molecules of the water that an evil scientist named Scuba created. They arrive at their camp unknowing that their companion was taken over by an alien energy being. This being needs the compressed water to power itself. This creature takes off to grab the big block and Hercules pursues. At the block it draws immense power and beats up Hercules. Hercules grabs the water block and stuffs it into the helmet. This block blows and destroys the alien and restores the water to Lake Ontario.

A new writer with Cary. Lots of stuff happens. Dave Riggs apparently died, and this makes sense since he didn’t really fit into the group. A goofy compressed water causes trouble. Convenient plot points get the group to America. We get introduced to the Atomic Knights. While never having a series of their own, they were regulars in an anthology series from the fifties and sixties. Also Dr. Skuba was something from the Omac series. So, they have now successfully integrated the Atomic Knights and Omac into the Kamandi universe. I really love these old issues with their goofy science and outrageous plots.