COMICSCENE REVIEW: Bruno Stahl’s “Boom Bandits”

Bruno Stahl will be a familiar name to anyone who’s picked up Pat Mills’ “Spacewarp” comic, as he’s the artist on “Jurassic Punx”, doing a sterling job. He’s done a few things for Image and Heavy Metal, as well as a well received two comic series five years ago called “The Hans”, so it’s good to see him back in charge with “Boom Bandits”.

It’s the future, naturally, with society seperated into old people who have cracked the secret of immortality, living in Methusaland in luxury, with youg people cast aside in the slums, kept around purely as their genetic material helps the oldies stay this side of the grave. After a gang of youths attack some boomer tourists (seeing how quaint life in the slums is) the oldie elite send a cyborg enforcer after them – a Youthaniser (which is a great name). Naturally, the Youthaniser doesn’t win the day of it’d be a crappy story, but what DOES happen is a cracking bit of action and a great set up for whatever occurs in the next instalment (no spoilers).

“Boom Bandits” is a pretty complete package for fans of energetic and intelligent yet anarchic comics. In that respect it should appeal to the “Spacewarp” crowd in a heartbeat, but in all honesty I think it’s better than anything in that publication, though it does help that it’s a thirty page chunk rather than ten. The art is bloody lovely, with hints of Sean Murphy in it’s black and white glory. There’s plenty of detail throughoput and it’s always good to get the impression that a lot of love and time went into something. Of course, great art is nothing without a decent story, and Stahl once again comes up trumps, with the highest priase I can give being that I REALLY want to read the next issue.

“Boom Bandits” will bring to mind the aggressive glory years of 2000AD (particulary Pat Mills stuff) to those nostalgic amongst you. It’s a first rate comic that does nothing but entertain throughout, leaving the reader wanting more. Issue 1 is avalable from Amazon for £5, and I’d advise anyone reading this to get it. Even Boomers like me…

Download the first five pages for free at Bruno’s website:

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