"Space Riders #1" Comic Review
Written by James Ferguson
Published by Black Mask Studios
Written by Fabian Rangel Jr
Illustrated by Alexis Ziritt
2015, 24 Pages, $3.99
Comic released on April 1st, 2015
Strap on your spacesuits and get ready to blast off to Crazy Town because Space Riders is about to blow your mind. The comic picks up with Captain...ahem...Capitan Peligro floating lifeless in space. Debris and assorted celestial junk hover around him. He's been stabbed in the eye during a fierce battle. Then he gets picked up by his ship, the Santa Muerte. It's a spaceship shaped like a human skull. I'm going to say that again just to make sure it sinks in. He has a spaceship shaped like a human skull. How metal is that?
It seems that Peligro has been through a bit of a rough patch. There's no doubt that he's one of the most badass folks in the galaxy, but that doesn't work out too well with his superior officers. There's no place for Peligro in any official capacity, but there's always a need for someone to handle a bit of dirty work off the books. Fortunately there's plenty of that to go around.
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Peligro is the kind of soldier that would make Han Solo tremble. There's a scene where he pistol whips a guy in a bar who gave the faintest whiff of attitude to him. This poor guy is literally seeing stars after he gets hit. The sudden change in his demeanor from tough guy to terrified wuss is hilarious. There are some nice little gags spread throughout the issue too, such as Mono the baboon's spacesuit, which is cut out to reveal his red buttcheeks.
It's very easy to read Space Riders and just be in awe of Alexis Ziritt's artwork. This is some crazy shit and definitely unlike anything you're going to find on the stands today. If you've ever wondered what comics were capable of as a medium, just flip through these pages. You wouldn't see this on TV unless you were watching Cartoon Network while stoned out of your gourd. It's so imaginative and out there and just plain interesting.
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The scenes in space are particularly amazing to look at. They're filled with so much color and life. Anything is possible out in these stars and Peligro whizzes through them in his skull-shaped spaceship. Ziritt packs these shots with so many details. There are planets, asteroids, and swirling lines of...actually I don't know what those are, but they look gorgeous. That's before you throw in stuff like the biker gang that looks like an unholy offspring of Heavy Metal and Jack Kirby. If Mad Max took place out in a galaxy far, far away, this is what it might look like.
I've never done acid, but if I could get a guarantee that the trip would be half as interesting as Space Riders, I would be tripping balls right now. The comic feels like a long lost tome that has been locked away for decades, only resurfacing now that the world is ready for it. It's trippy. It's fun. It's absolutely insane. Damn, is it good.