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Monday, November 6, 2017

Giant Robot Warrior Maintenance Crew (Graphic Novel)

by Mervyn McCoy & Nate Hill

 Publisher: Cosmic Times (2015)

 Softcover 87 pages 

Finished 11/6/2017

Amazon Listing

    I picked this one up at the 2017 Soda City Comic Con. One of the main reasons I go to these events, apart from digging through the discount comic bins,  is to buy independant books and comics which I might not have heard of otherwise. You never know what you might be missing. And a prime example of an easily missed gem is this book, Giant Robot Warrior Maintenance Crew.
    As I’m sure you can tell from the graphics, this is a parody of Voltron: Defender of the Universe. If you've ever watched the show as a kid, or in the current Netflix reincarnation, then you have probably seen the giant robot injured more than once, but never have you seen it repaired… or even maintained. Mechanisms don’t just take care of themselves. So who does it? Who are the grunts that check the oil and repair armor plating. This book answers the question. 

The story is told from the perspective of the unseen and unsung maintenance crew lurking behind the scene and in the bowels of the beast. The crew live in dingy conditions with barely any downtime, fighting off alien parasites and having sludge dumped on them on a daily basis. Meanwhile the photogenic pilots live in luxury, hog all of the glory, and are basically clueless about the day to day running of the ship.
    There is a wide disparity between the lifestyles of the pilots and crew, so much so that each group barely seems aware of the other. They interact through shouted command over speakers and unread memos. A microcosm of our own world where the uncaring elite make demands of the little folks without understanding or caring about their own problems or positions. By the end of the first twenty pages, you are actively rooting for the pilots to all die horribly. 

    This was one of those “why didn’t I think of it first” books. It is hysterical in its presentation, mixing cynical humor with dire action with skill and aplomb. You can feel the tension in the book, and the struggle between the haves and have-nots is palpable.  A must for fans of giant robot manga.

           For more readings, try books by Rex Hurst. 

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