In our never ending goal to supply our followers with new content, we sometimes get an opportunity to introduce you guys to new creators. We think this is important for two main reasons. One, it may introduce you to some content that you might not have noticed. Two it allows us to help promote new creators who are just hoping for some exposure. In this case, I can relate. It was only two years ago that a site called Geek Vibes Nation took a chance on some guy over 50, who still hasn’t grown up. With that in mind, So let’s look at one of those new books by Skull Dust Press: Mars City Vice.
The premise for Mars City Vice mixes two genres that don’t always get thought of in the same sentence. Sci-fi and Miami Vice. I’m assuming you remember Miami Vice. Don Johnson, Phillip Michael Thomas, serving justice in Miami in their stylish 80’s clothes consisting of loose fabric suit jackets and neon T-Shirts. Obviously writers Craig Sawyer and Chris Webb remembered the show. They just chose an unusual way to pay homage to it…on Mars. But let’s meet the particulars courtesy of writers Sawyer and Webb.
MAXWELL ‘MOONY’ BOONE: Started out as an undercover detective in the LDPD Lunar Detective Police Dept, before being transferred from Moon York then to the fake Mars City Vice. He is forced to dress and play a cool criminal in a fake 80’s Miami, but is actually a dedicated and by the book detective. He is incensed at the idea of playing a ‘Amusement Park Cop’ at the 80’s themed resort of Mars City. Baths and him have a rough start getting along, especially after their first encounter on the Moon.
TYKAR ‘TY’ BATHS: A seasoned detective that had been working undercover on multiple planets in the solar system, before asking to be assigned to Mar’s City five years ago. He is obsessed, like Boone, with chasing down a space gangster called Hadrian. Baths blames him for causing his sister Carena to become a junkie. He is one of the last of an ancient alien race of cat humanoids called Maldakians. The reason they are becoming so scarce is that they are being abducted in order to turn their blood into an expensive drug. Baths actually met Boone briefly while doing undercover work on The Moon, and he saved Boone’s life. Maldakians can be resurrected up to nine times, with Baths only having two lives left at the start of the series.
HADRIAN: Is the leader of the criminal organization called The Lunar Syndicate. He is actually a super strong android that is being controlled by an ancient Martian slug like creature called Gomodo, who has the power to place illusions in the minds of his enemies. Gomodo resides inside of Hadrian and uses him as a shared consciousness and a vehicle. ( Of course we don’t show what he looks like. He’s very secretive…and he hasn’t been revealed yet).
Issue One of Five
In book one of the five issue series, we are introduced to Boone. He has went from job to job, mainly because it has become increasingly difficult for a “good cop” to make it in corrupt cities. That and because he has developed an abrasive attitude over the years. Mars City maybe his last stop. His last chance to make a difference. Except that it wasn’t what he expected. Instead of being a legitimate cop, he is basically a cast member in the Mars City Players version of 80’s Police work. Complete with the Don Johnson wardrobe, which he hates. For now though, he will attempt to play along. But that doesn’t mean he’s going to like it.
We also get a look at Tykar Baths. He has been an undercover cop for awhile. Working in the more seedy parts of the city, chasing after the main villain Hadrian. During his time in Moon York, he actually encounters Boone and saves his life. Not that Boone felt he that NEEDED any help. Little did they both realize that they would be working together in time. Over the next four issues, we’ll see how that plays out.
Mars City Vice is a fun concept. The mixing of the genres makes for an interesting story and a iconic look. Writers Sawyer and Webb have embraced this concept paying homage to the Miami Vice theme while still mixing in the basic sci-fi elements. It’s just as the writers explained:
Imagine Phillip K. Dick wrote a season of a sci-fi Miami Vice, and you start to get what we are shooting for with MCV.
Where else could you get alien gangsters, Symbiotic KingPins, and hard boiled detective work all in the same Neon Wrapper? Speaking of that Neon look…
Artists Deivid Deon and Sandro Reberio have created a nice mix of alien species, wrapped in the Miami Vice style visuals. Some of the alien characters look shady, some look slick, but all fit in the theme they are maintaining. As the story proceeds, they keep the action flowing panel to panel which includes some unusual panel orientations. When added to the color work of James G. Brown, you have a nice colorful representation of that Miami style pallet which works as a collective whole. I look forward to seeing what happens next in the series.
If you were a fan of Miami Vice and Science Fiction, you probably should check out Mars City Vice. You can find it on ComiXology. Let’s us know what you think here at Geek Vibes Nation.
Senior Writer at GeekVibesNation – I am a 50 something child of the 70’s who admits to being a Star Trek/Star Wars/Comic Book junkie who once dove head first over a cliff (Ok, it was a small hill) to try to rescue his Fantastic Four comic from a watery grave. I am married to a lovely woman who is as crazy as I am and the proud parent of a 17 year old boy with autism. My wife and son are my real heroes.