Tony’s smacked in the smoocher with a revelation.
Imagine, if you can, an arse. Now, grow it. Grow a great big planet-sized arse. An arse that dwarfs the Death Star, an arse so big if you stuck a stupid wig on it, it could run for President.
Now imagine the kind of comic-book it would take to kick an arse that size.
Then go out and pick up Tank Girl – Two Girls, One Tank #2. For that’s the kind of comic-book that can do the job.
First of all, it has TWO Tank Girls in it – the original, in a bit of a shonky, B-grade, second-eleven value-range tank, and the new, former good girl Sydney art and artefact dealer Magnolia Jones, who, in a bit of a Rotgut-fuelled trance, shaved her head and ‘became’ Tank Girl when the original’s tank ended up in her gallery ready for selling to the highest bidder.
Now they’re encountering each other on the road, while both rumbling the frack out of Dodge, or more specifically out of Allison Springs, pursued by a couple of truckloads (no really, truckloads) of Australian troopers, out for their blood.
Two Tank Girls. Let that sink in a minute, and then read the first…13 pages or so of this 28 page comic-book. It’s more or less one gigunda-throttle-fight, though to be fair, TG’s pal Barney does a lot of the throttling. The truckloads of sardiney troopers get thrown on a barby of tankfire, and the two Tank Girls end up spending the night together in a local jail, while Barney and Booga (Tank Girl’s marsupial partner) come up with a plan to blast them out, with a little help from Jet Girl and her Dick Dastardly-style roof-grabbing jet. Barney goes very literally ballistic, reminding us that Tank Girl’s not just anarchic fun for all the family – people get turned to pulp and jelly in this comic-strip by these punky anarchist purveyors of hot hardware.
But something bizarre happens during the night in jail with Tank Girl 1 and Tank Girl 2.
We’re absolutely not about to spoil the surprise for you, but we can tell you than Tank Girl 2 is NOT Tank Girl – you knew that, you saw who she was when the story started in issue #1. Suffice it for now to say what you saw at the start of the story is not by any means the whole story as it applies to goody-two-shoes Magnolia Jones. She actually has a longer history than you might imagine – only some of it involving overpriced tinned asparagus – and when you find out the rest of her story, there’s every chance if you’re a committed Tank Girl fan you will spectacularly lose your brown stuff. It’s big, it’s bold and it is of course also completely barking mad. You’re gonna love it.
While the hardest girl in the comic-book world continues to be written and drawn by dudes, (something that could be changed with no especially ill effect, being as it’s 2016 and all), Alan Martin and Brett Parson, two issues into this storyline, have got cojones in the best sense of the word, delivering the bonkers vibe of Tank Girl with an underlying storyline that makes the most of there being a storyline, and with lettering here in the ’66 Batman tradition – there may not be many Zaps! Or Pows! here, but there are plenty of Put Put Puts, Vrrrrrms, Pong Pangs, and Baps! Oh yes, we said it – in the middle of a girl-fight, where one of the girls in question has stripped down to her bra to befuddle a good ol’ Aussie truck driver, there are Baps! when they hit each other. Let it never be said that Tank Girl ever succumbed to subtlety.
Seriously though, the sound effects give this Tank Girl story both a sense of the TG we know and love, plus a whole new onomatopoeic energy that means you rip right through an issue, even an issue as mad and full of ‘Holy Chipotle, did not see that coming!’ moments as this one.
It’s worth giving a tip of the tank to Ned Ivory too, possibly the most ironically named colourist in the business, for giving Tank Girl – Two Girls, One Tank #2 a vibrancy that positively stinks of Aussie post-apocalyptic fabulousness.
So yes, go grab a tank – any tank – and get your arse down to the comic-book store right now. Tank Girl – Two Girls, One Tank #2 is waiting for you there. Yes, technically, it might blow your dangly bits off before you get to pay for it, but if you survive, it’s worth taking home to meet your eyeballs. Go do that now. Some of us have an advance copy of issue #3 to read.
Tony Fyler lives in a cave of wall-to-wall DVDs and Blu-Rays somewhere fairly
nondescript in Wales, and never goes out to meet the "Real People". Who,
Torchwood, Sherlock, Blake, Treks, Star Wars, obscure stuff from the
70s and 80s and comedy from the dawn of time mean he never has to. By
runs an editing house, largely as an
excuse not to have to work for a living. He's currently writing a Book.
With Pages and everything. Follow his progress at FylerWrites.co.uk