The Expendable One #2: The Boob versus the Boobs
by Jason M. Burns, various artists (Viper, 2007)

Twigs Dupree can't be killed. But that doesn't stop a lot of people -- and an army of homicidal robots disguised as beautiful women -- from trying.

I confess, I stepped into volume two of The Expendable One at a disadvantage since I'd never had a chance to read the first. But it isn't too hard to hit the ground running once you realize that a) Twigs can take any amount of damage; b) the injuries hurt even if they don't cause any permanent harm; and c) in a largely colorless book, tough-as-nails Agent Armstrong is always easy to spot by the color of her thigh-high silks. (They're baby blue in this volume; apparently they were pink in the first.)

I won't tell you why there's an army of robots after Twigs. Let's just accept that as truth. It's how he, Armstrong and pal Jerry handle it that's so entertaining.

And the book is entertaining, in a very off-the-wall and goofy way. The title alone should make that much clear, although you won't find much in the way of blatant nudity here; the "boobs" of the title refer to the statuesque design of the robots, while the "boob," obviously, is Twigs.

As mentioned, there's very little color in the book. Besides the aforementioned nylons, we have have the red of blood and fire, and ... I guess that's pretty much it. It's effective in its way, eye-catching and dramatic without being quite so stylish as the Sin City effect. The art, divided up among Erich Owen, Ryan Cody and Courtney Huddleston, unfortunately gets a little worse with each hand-off, but it's never so bad as to detract from the story.

Let's get volume three in the mail! (Note to Jason Burns: You should probably ask the boys in the mailroom to send me a copy of the first volume, too. It would clear up so many things....)

review by
Tom Knapp

16 February 2008

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