Ignition City is a comic book, “an ongoing epic told in five issue series,” written by Warren Ellis, drawn by Gianluca Pagliarani.
Commando Cody, Flash Gordon (along with a few of his back-up characters), Buck Rogers and so on are all characters, thinly veiled Planetary-style on Ignition City. In a science fiction reality 1956 where the retro-future pulp science fiction heroes have all gone to the stars and faced the aliens on Venus, Mars and beyond earth nations have still abandoned their space programs. Ignition City is the only place where space ships can take off or land.
The protagonist is Mary Raven, whose father was killed in Ignition City and she shows up to figure out the mystery. For some reason her midriff is showing.
Raygun fights in the street, flashbacks to alien worlds, martians sell alien food from stalls and space crabs eat human remains while cosmonaut, Yuri Gagarin, staggers around drunk muttering on about what a hero he is. Everyone in the series is earth-bound, wanting to get back into space and not able to do so.
Pagliarani’s art is amazing and he really brings the city to life. The buildings are all grounded, rotted out space ships, tremendous pulp rockets with fins; they’re glorious. His art brings Ellis’ mad ideas to life. Ellis gets to vent about our stuttering steps into space while playing with pulp toys, something he does well and with gusto. The first three issues have been solid fun and I’m looking forward to seeing more of pulp sci-fi space.
This comic, combined with talking about pulp sci-fi heroes last night with Pete prompted me to pick up another edition of Alex Raymond’s Flash Gordon series, the Flash Gordon Saturday morning cartoon series on DVD and a collection of Buck Rogers.