Deadenders 1 (March 2000)

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Ed Brubaker opens the first Deadenders issue rather predictably. Sure, the details about the future world are a different (a little) from other dystopian future worlds, but there’s nothing glaringly original. Two rich bad guys are talking about the fate of a teenager out in one of the rough sectors.

Then Brubaker moves to the sector and to the protagonist–Beezer–and Deadenders all of a sudden becomes special. Not because any of the details are startling (a lot of it seems heavy influenced by Love and Rockets) but because Brubaker’s writing is exceptionally strong. He gives the characters thoughtful relationships and establishes them immediately. By the end of the first issue, his characters seem fully fleshed out.

The art, from Warren Pleece and Richard Case, gives Brubaker a great setting. Their destroyed future city, sometimes empty, sometimes full, always eeriely quiet, is wonderous. Especially considering it’s the first issue.

Deadenders wows.

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