Monster Massacre, Vol. 2
By Imaginary Friends Studios and STELLAR Labs (Dave Elliot, Editor)
Titan Comics, Large Format Hardcover, 176 pages, $22.99 US
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It’s the early 1980s all over again; I’m 14 years old, and I’m feverishly reading through a copy of Heavy Metal magazine for the trippy comics and hot nude fantasy babes. At this particular 7-11 convenience store, it’s not kept behind the counter with Playboy and Penthouse and the other adult magazines, and I can buy Heavy Metal without a problem. But wait . . . this is actually 2014, and this hardcover I’m holding isn’t Heavy Metal, but the second Monster Massacre collection from Titan Comics.
The creators of the comics in Monster Massacre, Vol. 2 would hopefully be delighted with that comparison, however, because the feeling of déjà vu I had while reading this was absolutely palpable. Like listening to Rush’s Signals LP, this collection takes me right back to my teens with its gorgeous artwork and quick-and-pithy stories. You get superheroes, hard SF, war and fantasy tales. And did I mention the naked women? Oh yeah, them, too. By the score.
This is not a book you’d want your mom finding, but it’s guaranteed to spark many a teenage imagination . . . or in the case of an old reprobate comic reader like me, make the reader feel young again.
This collection is presented in a gorgeous large format hardcover that reminds me in feel of a UK-style “annual” for a show such as Doctor Who or Life on Mars. As usual with a Titan product, quality of the printing and binding is top-notch. Unlike an old copy of Heavy Metal, the cover on Monster Massacre, Vol. 2 won’t get bent up . . . but on the other hand, you also can’t roll it up and stick it in the pocket of your skinny teenage jeans.
If you’re a fan of gorgeous comics art for its own sake, Monster Massacre, Vol. 2 will be a great way to spend an afternoon or two. There’s a lot of talent on display here, in more ways than one.