By Hewlett & Martin (Titan Books)
It’s hard to believe that our recent past is so far away. Back in the wild and wacky 1980s when I was tea-boy on Warrior magazine (still one of the most influential independent comics ever produced) there was a frantic buzz of feverish creativity in the British comics scene wherein any young upstart could hit the big time.
Possibly the most upstarty of all were the art-students Jamie Hewlett and Alan Martin (and tangentially, Phillip Bond) who prowled the local convention circuit impressing the hell out of everybody with their photocopied fanzine Atomtan. At the back of issue #1 was a pin-up/ad for a dubious looking young lady with a big, BIG gun and her own armoured transport. And now it’s suddenly twenty-one years later…
Commissioned by Brett Ewins and Steve Dillon for their new venture Deadline; a pop-culture magazine with loads of cool comics strips, the absurdist tales of a feisty, well-armed chick roaming the wilds of a futuristic Australia with her Kangaroo boy-friend Booga caught the imagination of a large portion of the public. There was even a movie…
Titan Books, self-appointed guardian of The Best of British strip art, has remastered those old adventures and spin-offs for a six-volume chronological and complete compilation and this initial edition collects the first fifteen instalments (October 1988-February 1990) featuring such landmarks as the President’s colostomy bags, ‘Big Mouth Strikes Again’, ‘The Australian Job’, ‘The Preposterous Bollox of the Situation’ and loads of other bizarre thrills plus the now legendary ‘How to Draw Tank Girl the Jamie Way’ and even pin-ups and a cover gallery.
If you’ve never seen the anarchic, surreal, ultra-violent (in a funny way) and hip-culturally drenched peculiarity that was Tank Girl, bastard love child of 2000AD and Love and Rockets, you’ve missed a truly unique experience – and remember, she doesn’t care if you like her, just so long as you notice her.
TM & © 2009 Jamie Hewlett and Alan Martin. All rights reserved.