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Comic Book Review

Book Cover

Tank Girl Ongoing #6
Tank Girl Forever #2 of 4


Writer: Alan Martin
Artist: Brett Parson
Publisher: Titan Comics
RRP: UK £2.65, US $3.99
Age: Mature readers
32 pages
Publication Date: 28 August 2019

The world called out for a true superhero! Unfortunately, it got the wrong number, and Tank Girl answered! Joanie is back… but who the heck is she? Tank Girl’s chaotic caped capers continue, with the secret origin of Joanie – and another round of superheroic slap-fights…!

Actually, the superheroic slap-fights are halted for a few pages in this issue, first as we go on a flashback to 13 years ago, and then as Tank Girl and co find themselves temporarily able to fend off Barney and her mysterious partner in revenge, Joanie. This is partly thanks to the timely arrival of Booga the Boy Wonder. Hurrah, I’d been wondering where he’d got to!

The aforementioned flashback is a sort of origins story, taking us back to an era when Barney was spending an awful lot of time with her new friend Joanie – much to the concern of Tank Girl and Jet Girl. Joanie has been putting Barney’s safety at risk by encouraging her to participate in the fad for Extremely Stupid Sports. Hey, maybe it was Joanie’s influence that led to Barney taking part in the dangerous Watermelon Run a decade ago in Skidmarks.

Meanwhile, Zulu Dobson and Camp Koala discover evidence of a meteor strike, which immediately had me thinking that there must be a Smallville-type connection to the emergence of the main characters’ super-powers. Dobson’s mention of tektite is a bit of real science, though he should more accurately refer to the impactor as a meteorite rather than a meteor.

Before long, Camp goes all weird, experiencing nightmarish blood-drenched visions similar to those in Barney’s head – but then, he’s usually pretty weird at the best of times! As rendered by Brett Parson, with smaller ears and looking a bit cuddlier than Jamie Hewlett used to make him, I was reminded of the Leigh Francis character the Bear. As he enjoys an issue of Comic Reader’s Wives, I almost expected his ‘tail’ to pop out! Yes, as written by Alan Martin (from a story co-developed with his comic reader’s wife, Lou), the koala doesn’t seem to be gay any more – so perhaps we should start calling him Butch Koala, or at least Bi Koala!

The stuffed marsupial isn’t the only ‘mascot’ from Tank Girl’s early days to reappear in this episode, either…

Things get a little serious at times in this issue, including a very dark cliffhanger ending, but there’s still plenty to entertain comic readers (and their wives).


Richard McGinlay