Space Ace

Derek Moreland, a longtime friend — and semi-official Friend o’ the Blog — has written a comic, illustrated by his friend Derrick Fleece, and by george, I’m gonna review it!

Space Is Awful: The Saga of John Dennis #1

The story gets going right out of the gate as Dennis Olbeter, an overnight janitor, gets abducted by octopoid aliens to battle as a gladiator in outer space. Why a janitor? The aliens watch a lot of Earth action movies, so they just assume all humans are action superstars. (They also insist on calling Dennis “John,” because they think that’s the only name available for humans — if it works for John Wick, John McClane, John Rambo, and John Shaft, it oughtta work for anyone.)

The aliens inject John with a chemical that’s supposed to help him survive his fights with alien monsters, but instead, it has the surprising effect of causing him to gain random superpowers during matches — the first time, battling a giant alien gorilla, he finds himself able to become super-dense and impervious to damage.

But John’s unexpected wins are making powerful people unhappy, and there’s no telling what they’ll do to stop him.

Verdict: Thumbs up. We’re not talking about high art here. It’s a humor comic that features a killer robot making extremely cheerful knife puns.

But the knife puns are entirely excellent, the plot moves quick, and the characters are interesting and funny.

We don’t really get much of a grasp on John’s personality — he’s mostly getting abducted, injected, chased, and punted around in this issue — but I do expect we’ll get to see more of what makes him tick in future issues.

So if you’re looking for a light, funny sci-fi comic, go pick this one up. First issue is just 99 cents on Comixology!

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