The Top 10 Reasons Why Transmetropolitan is Still a Must Read Comic

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It’s been nearly ten years since the spectacular conclusion of Warren Ellis and Darick Robertson’s hit Vertigo series Transmetropolitan. And I am sad to say, I only picked up the series recently. I’d always heard of it and seen it around but I’d never actually sat down and read it. After finishing the last page, I wanted to write something for it. And since it’s a bite late for a review, I decided to make a Top Ten list of why being a bastard still works and why Transmetropolitan is STILL one of the best comic series to ever be published.

  1. The Bowel Disruptor: In any form of media I’ve ever read or seen, I’ve never seen a non-lethal weapon that works so well. It disrupts the bowels. Violently, painfully, and absolutely terrifying to stand up against. Do I really need to say more about this?
  2. Spider Jerusalem:Spider is such a great lead character and absolutely epitomizes Warren Ellis’ writing style. He’s tough, snarky, and straight forward. Everyone’s rogue journalist sets out to save a city that he absolutely despises and proves to be the heart of the story. And I honestly, I can’t remember the last time I’ve rooted so hard for a character in ANY media.

    My personal journalistic inspiration.

  3. The Filthy Assistants:  The six foot something Channon Yarrow acts as Spider’s bodyguard and all around ass-kicker. Yelena Rossini is Spider’s personal assistant and occasional fuck buddy. The two of them play perfectly off of Spider in their own way. While they both are constantly tormented by Spider and speak of their hatred of him in return, they will follow him to the end of his crusade against the corruption in the city.
  4. The Art: Darick Robertson proves his art chops throughout the series. He truly shines through in any scene where the main characters are travelling through the city streets. The amount of detail he pays to each and every inch of the page is massive. I could spend minutes looking over these scenes, finding some new sign, random character, or odd stores every time. He took the future and made it both very real and hilarious.
  5. The Chair Leg of Truth: Despite this being in only a single issue, this scene sticks out in my mind as one of the best of the series. During an interrogation with Fred Christ, Spider rips off the leg of a chair and begins beating him with it. All the while, Spider screams about the chair leg of truth and its power. While this may not sound exciting, it was absolutely amazing to read.
  6. The Cat: Spider’s nameless cat is one of the most badass characters around. It has two faces, three eyes, and is a chain smoker. And if Spider doesn’t like you, you can bet that the cat will be pissing on you when he’s done kicking your ass. I’m still hoping Ellis will do a mini-series based on the little bastard.
  7. The Writing: Warren Ellis is a master of his craft. He can do Sci-fi comics like no other writer in mainstream comics today. But to give an example of his writing skills, I urge you to look at Transmetropolitan #5. In this issue, Spider watches TV. And that’s it. What other comic series has a character spending an entire issue watching TV? And where else would it be so interesting?
  8. The Transient Smiley Face/Spider’s Glasses: So many series have their trademark symbol such as the bat symbol, The Comedian’s blood stained button, or the “Fuck Communism” lighter. In Transmetropolitan, we’re given two: Spider’s super awesome glasses (which I want a pair of) and the three-eyed smiley face that appears in every issue of the series.
  9. The Message: Spider is a journalist and Ellis uses Spider to make commentaries on a wide range of topics from poverty and child prostitution, to television and political corruption. While the story is set in a dystopian future, the themes of the series still manage to have meaning in today’s world.
  10. The End: When I was coming upon the end of the series, I really didn’t want to finish. I didn’t want to see another comic series I had invested so much in come to an end. But all great things must come to an end. Some endings make you angry and some endings make you cry. Without giving away any spoilers, I will say that the ending had me laughing triumphantly.

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About ChrisX

Comic geek, addicted gamer, future murse, and sometimes a writer. The three coolest things ever are X-Men, Back to the Future, and Doctor Who. Just saying. You should be awesome and follow me on twitter.