Bastard Galaxia Volume 1: Power Corruption and Lies.
Created by Steve Gregson and Matt Simmons.
(I can't find any credits so that's what you are getting!)
Full Colour - Webcomic collected into trade paperback.
The Story - This is how the creators describe this collection:
'Bastard Glaxia has it all... money, power and a super awesome base that he really kinda wishes was shaped like a skull...
He's also somehow gotten his own toy line!
Now he's trying to straddle the line between being evil and being marketable whilst not letting his crew know that he has sold out. His latest plans involve him taking down the super RAD Brosef Manstar whilst wearing cool costumes and using toy grade weaponry...
Bastard Galaxia is a love letter to the shows and toys of the 80s and 90s! So grab a seat and bring back the joy of Saturday morning cartoons but with the bone crushing realisation that it was all a big toy commercial...
The comic where 'good' and 'evil' are meaningless and action figure sales are god.'
The Review - I'm not a reader of many webcomics so had missed this previous to this particular collection that I picked up from the creators at the Lakes Comics Festival a month or so ago.
This is a great looking collection and has a really professional look to the production and designs. It recently easily passed it's funding goal on Kickstarter and is now available at the creator's tables at conventions. It is also a genuinely funny book.
We all dream of having an action figure of ourselves don't we?
From the first moment where Bastard Galaxia (BD) is talking to himself in the bathroom mirror whilst taking a leak and onwards with more outrageous malarkey it raised more than a few chuckles from this reader. For example anyone who names the elevator in the secret 'Lunar Moon Space Base' the 'Bone Shaft' immediately has me on board. In fact, Simmons and Gregson take obvious pleasure in saying the word 'shaft' over and over again and it never gets old. BD claims he is also a little self-conscious about his secret base being in the general shape of a cock and balls - we all have our own worries at work I suppose.
The main reason that BD is so likeable for me is that he is so fucking off the wall and crazy. He is a skull headed super-villain (obviously) with skull shaped trains, ships and foot-soldiers surrounding him. He is also prone to moments of psychotically charged violence. In a moment of uncertainty about the actual reality surrounding him as he walks through his base he tests his sanity/insanity by squeezing the head of one of his soldiers until it bursts like an over rip strawberry. He then proceeds to wipe his hands on the face and tunic of his assistant before, without missing a beat, moving on to showing his staff the new 'Throne Room'.
He also can't remember the name of his snout faced man servant and calls him alternatively 'Pig Man' or 'Porkins'. He has an associate without a hand who he calls 'Hando' and his wife/not wife is described thus:
'Donnatrix Sinclair. A woman so evil I made her my wife...and so evil we divorced soon after!'
If this had actually been a cartoon when I was growing up I'd have watched the shit out of it. It vaults off into some pretty nutty adventures and I read it in one sitting and chortled along at my desk.
'WAIT-WAIT-WAIT-WAIT! DON'T CHOP OFF MY DICK!'
The comic has a modern animation style to the art and remains joyously anarchic but consistent throughout. The trade is also packed full of extras like adverts for toy swords that transform into skate boards and action figures (like ManStar, Rad Max, Gun Shark and 'BadGuy' Galaxia). You also get some great self-referential meta winks about play sets and a short back-up story that looks like it has been ripped off the back of an action figure backing board.
'There's a freakin' Shark! ...with a gun!
This volume ends on a crashed space ship and a prolonged battle (of sorts). You can tell, especially in the latter half of the book, that this has come from a long running webcomic and it felt like a couple of the talking heads pages affected the pacing a little. However I found this book on the whole though a funny and welcome surprise. Certainly not something I would normally read but now a book that I will look out for volume number two.
You can find these creators selling their books over at https://mattsimmonscomics.bigcartel.com/products and the webcomic over at http://www.bastardgalaxia.com/comic/
You can follow Matt Simmons on Twitter @SheriffFreak and on Instagram @Sheriff_freak
You can find Steve Gregson on Twitter @RoboticSteve and on Instagram @RoboticSteve
Many thanks for reading.