OK, Disclaimer / Parental Advisory time; we're talking DRUGS here. Recreational, illegal, psychotropic, mind-altering, consciousness-expanding, highly dangerous and probably extraterrestrial in origin. Buyer beware, proceed with caution, yadda yadda yadda... If you are looking for something safe and family-values JUST SAY NO!
DOSE from writer Sean Ellis and artist John Gebbia is a headlong plunge into a dizzying headtrip of a story. Welcome to San Francisco, but not as we know it... Metahumans, aliens, robots and flying cars are all a part of the urban landscape, and have been for decades. But don't worry, there are still many comfortingly normal elements of the familiar world to cling to: unemployment, gang warfare, exploitation, rampant capitalism, invasive advertising... and the buying and selling of mood-altering substances, some of them legal, some of them not.
Our hero is Screw Worm, an ex-sidekick metahuman junkie slob living alone in his dump of an apartment but for his trusty robot pal Sonny Boy. Rudely awakened from his near-comatose state by his concerned robot parent substitute, Screw Worm immediately gets to work on his first order of business: tracking down his next fix.
His quest leads him to a nightclub filled with dealers and dopeheads of many different species, some of whom are so high they are actually levitating several metres above the heaving dancefloor. The star of the show then makes her appearance, promising a rush that is on a whole other level. The crowd is eager to lap it up, quite literally ... but what is the true nature of this mysterious elixir? Is our hero going to survive this buzz, or will it be a one-way trip?
The story is illustrated with great energy and imagination, San Francisco's melting pot transformed into a truly interplanetary cosmopolitan metropolis. Caped crusaders and alien immigrants wield their superpowers against their enemies in showdowns and turf skirmishes in a joyful collision of genres. The creators delight in showing the superhuman as all-too-human, the exotic as sordid, juxtaposing the fantastic with the mundane and squalid. A comment on our duplicitous popular culture, perhaps, with demigod celebrities constantly in and out of rehab, perpetuating the illusion of living the dream while hiding the nightmare? Whatever, it is an engaging and humorous take on modern life in the big city.
You can download Issue 1 for FREE from the website HERE (in English and Japanese) ... but of course, your first sample is free, just to get you hooked!