Join Tank Girl as she escapes from an asylum, goes back to
comics school with Hewlett and Martin, visits her English
grandparents in the West Country, gets high on hallucinogenic
drugs, and gets fired from Deadline
is strong evidence in this collection of comic strips to suggest
that Jamie Hewlett and Alan Martin were either beginning to
grow bored with the original Tank Girl concept or they
were running out of ideas for it, because the stories herein
deviate considerably from what has gone before.
Girl herself spends relatively little time in her usual Aussie
outback setting. She visits the UK in Summer Love Sensation
and steps out of her narrative environment completely when
she is sacked from Deadline and cast out on to the
street in The Fall and Rise and Fall and the Ship in the
Bottle. She meets her own creators in Force Ten to
Ringarooma Bay and Summer Love Sensation, the plots
to both of which depart on Pythonesque tangents. Force
Ten... ends up turning into an exquisitely detailed spoof
of The Prisoner. It's hard to tell whether H and M
were being wacky for the sake of it, or whether they just
couldn't think of a way to end these stories!
of the strips don't feature Tank Girl at all. Her kangaroo
boyfriend Booga takes the lead in the drugged-up 1970s cop-show
spoof Askey & Hunch and in Booga's Christmas Carol.
Tank Girl's pal Jet Gurl (sic) appears in Hairy Pussy,
a story within a story concerning a Wild West sheriff called
Harry Poussini. A similar framing narrative surrounds Blue
Helmet, although Tank Girl does appear in the main story
- as do a gang of bears who represent a fusion of Yogi Bear,
the Hair Bear Bunch and the Banana Splits!
of these narrative detours gives Hewlett the opportunity to
tailor his artistic style accordingly, ranging from the more
cartoony style of Hairy Pussy and Askey & Hunch
to the intricate detail of The Fall and Rise...
all of the pages are now printed in full colour, many of them
were originally beautifully hand-coloured by Hewlett himself.
Unfortunately, the original colour artwork has lost some of
its detail and contrast in reproduction. Also, the centre
details of the double-page spreads have been compromised by
the paperback binding process - i.e. you'd have to crease
the spine to see the whole artwork!
in spite of a few repro problems and despite (or because of)
the creators deviating from their original concept, this compendium
remains anarchically entertaining.
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