Tokyo Ghost is listening to The Dead Kennedy's while sitting atop a throne of 2000 AD mags: preachy, electric, and bold. Rick Remender makes himself both conductor and player in this book, filling the script with his essence and criticisms, in the characters, environments, and even the dick jokes. This transperency, this auto-biographical nature of Remender's work will either completely turn you on or give you a heart attack to push you away completely, like a speedball of viagra. Okay, please forgive me for all the metaphors but it's the only way I can describe Tokyo Ghost, my new favorite book on the stands.
I say this as a complete and utter devotee to anything that comes out of Rick's pen, I love it all, I love this, and I don't care.
Tokyo Ghost features two characters, Led Dent and Debbie Decay, lovers in a co-dependent relationship, as they try to free themselves from the technology and social media addicted far-future that they inhabit. Led is completely immersed, Debbie is straight edge. They are also enforcers of this world, forced to participate to be able to survive. Throughout this issue, we're given their backstory and the job that's going to propel them forward. That's what the book is about, but not what it is.
What it is, and I hate using this word because it's hit the point of going past exaggeration and is now a hyperbolic hyperbole, is important. It's the all-too cliche wake up call, but one that is sorely needed. Even now, as I type this review, I am staring into a void. A black-hole of technology emanating from my computer. Recently, Remender tweeted something along the lines of 'the internet doesn't make you happy', and I am one to agree. It's ruined Led Dent, it's made Debbie Decay unhappy, and certainly has had an effect on you, dear reader.
Let it be known that Sean Murphy, in my opinion, is doing some of the best work of his career on this book, as well. Interpreting these scripts with all of the social commentary, action, humor (at one point an old dude's member is hanging out and the dick dangle physics are on point), and sadness is no easy feat and Murphy is completely up to the task. His pencil is a motorcycle, ripping across pages and layouts and letters to burn a new image into every pulped page.
Let me be preachy. When you buy this book, in ongoing, trade-paperback, or oversized hardcover, turn off your fucking smartphone. Let Rick and Sean take you on a journey, and just for a second, meditate on what it means to be tech-addicted, only until the ever encroaching thought of the next text-message, phone call, or notification seeps in.