I don’t know how I ended up ordering Multiple Warheads: Alphabet to Infinity. I’m sure some can relate to that glorious moment of sitting down with a new copy of PREVIEWS and seeing what’s coming down the ol’ comic pike. I feel like I saw an ad for it and thought, “Oh great, another comic for people in love, I’ll make sure to skip that one.” being the bitter and jaded doll that I am. At the same time though I’m sure I also thought, “Woah,this guy writes and draws it and it looks like a whacked out scifi trippy kind of dealie.” Either way when I went to the shop the week the first issue dropped it showed up in my box and I thought, “Well it’s already here. May as well read it.” And I read it. And I thought, “Yeah, this is a comic for people in love. Great.”
I didn’t hate it, but the lack of the type of love in my life that Sexica and Nikolai have made it hard for me to get close to it, as much as the concepts in the book interested me. I felt just a little too broken to give my heart to two crazy kids in love on the run. Well, not so much on the run as on the casual drive to a new home after the sky fell and crushed the old one.
It’s also about a gender bending assassin/organ harvester and a headless duke…kind of. It’s hard to explain. Really, if you’re going to read this issue because you want to know in factual terms the A, B, and C of Multiple Warheads you’re going to be out of luck. This is more about what it all feels like and looks like and tastes like (delicious!). But issue 2 that just came out this week dispelled whatever reservations I had about the title and now I’m into. I’m officially into it and I’m officially curious as hell as to who Brandon Graham is and how he does the things that he does.
Let me tell you what this book is not. This book is not forced, cheesy girl bait, even though it has fancy script (like letters) and and beautiful sex and lots of colors. This book is not another post apocalyptic circle jerk where you encounter the same old same old and gloom and cynicism. However this book is what would happen if Tank Girl had sex with The Phantom Tollbooth and Joseph Heller babysat for it on weekends.
In the first issue maybe I was just not ready for the honesty of the characters, and it was hard keeping up with the surreality of the scenes in which every sentence has at least two meanings and everywhere you look body parts are talking or flying or fleeing.
Graham’s art style seems like it takes cues from all over the creative map, swirls of manga, underground, sci-fi future shock all dance dreamily with pages that would be at home in a children’s novel. Like if 2000 A.D. and Heavy Metal and Highlights for Kids all had a baby that grew up listening to dance music from the future and hanging out with gods and werewolves. If Myazaki had a punk rock teenager who also loved electronic lounge music, he’d be reading this comic. Or writing it. Or having an actual conversation with it while walking across clouds being trailed by floating heads.
No page space is wasted in Multiple Warheads and the fact that it’s a cover to cover, ad-less, eye popping, genre jumping, page packed package that is being sold at $2.99 make it an automatic purchase for me and you. But you’re thinking, “I’m not looking for that. I like comics with violence and motorcars.” Look this comic has violence and motorcars.
Everyone is different yeah? I’ve know girls that coo while reading Neonomicon and I know other girls who sob at Pride of Baghdad (and I know boys who sob at Pride of Baghdad as well). As a community of comic fans we’re always looking for ways to bring more people into the fold (unless you’re Tony Harris) and so there’s men out there who are always on the look out for comics to give to their ladies to say, “Look! It’s not scary! And it’s not all misogyny and ultra-violence!”. So far comic book dudes of the world have embraced titles like Phonogram, Y: The Last Man, The Sandman or Fables to bring wary women on to team geek. Well add Multiple Warheads to that list, because it’s not a comic for girls or for boys, it’s for everyone and it doesn’t have to talk down to you or demean anybody to be entertaining, fascinating, delightful and insane.
Like Salvador Dali, Jodorowsky, 10 tabs of acid and Adventure Time blended together into a comic book stew of savory surreal love bites, Multiple Warheads: Alphabet to Infinity is unlike any other comics on the stands today.