Black Humor, Accurate Fire, Tactical Onesies!

Welcome to the 4th edition of the Blood Bank fellow CBSI members. Where new “blood” via a title, creators, or both is highlighted for your consumption. Today we are going to look at a book that on the surface can be viewed as another zombie apocalypse retread, or a exploitation piece. However, inside the pages where it matters most, there is a deeper meaning. This includes something that has some real substance. In addition, it is showing a bit of value in the secondary market. The book I am speaking to is Rags. A unique story that breathes new life into the horror genre in the comic medium.

 

 

Black Humor, Accurate Fire, Tactical Onesies!

 

Rags is a comic involving two military veterans and their quest for a sense of normalcy during a zombie plague that has wrecked the liberal state of California. But this isn’t a tale about Zombies. This is a tale about pants. A tale about PTSD. A tale about finding a purpose. About setting aside your own prejudice. About overcoming guilt and insanity.”

 

The creators behind this series is Brian Ball and Trent Luther. Brian, the writer is a 14 year active duty Army veteran. This is his first complete comic come to life. The creation for the comic is an interesting one.

Here is Brian on the subject:

The initial plot we came up with was just some chick running from store to store trying to find a pair of pants while fighting off a zombie horde. And each time she found pants, she’d lose them somehow or some way and have to go find some new ones. It was funny in our heads, but after initially writing the whole thing, I knew I could tell a better story if I just changed some things, so that story evolved into what Rags is now.”

 

 

Trent Luther of Fargo, North Dakota is the other creator. The style and emphasis on certain colors is intentional and immediately grabs the reader.

Here is Trent:

“The coloring for Rags is done that way, because I wanted people to focus on what the was important to the character, Regina. Her freckles are important, and obviously her tattoo’s. I wanted to add to the tension by tricking the reader into focusing on things that I wanted them to focus on”

 

 

The stylized art comes from the talent of Luigi Tuerel. He does a great job using facial expressions and body language to move the story. Our main hero Marine veteran Regina Rakowski (Rags) is drawn with a sensual tone. Furthermore, both her inner and outer emotions play out beautifully over the panels. As someone stated there is a real “physicality” that can been seen throughout the first issues.

 

 

Rags initially was a creator produced story. There is a prologue, and censored & uncensored Issue # 1 that was originally available on ComixCentral. Antarctic Press took over as publisher and released the first issue last week was sold out quickly on the usual suspects online. In addition, there was a rare Virgin cover limited to 100 copies (some say 200) that has done exceptionally well too within the aftermarket.

In conclusion, it’s the story that separates this comic from others. This is greatly due to the protagonist Regina. She is emotionally unbalanced because of her experiences in active military service. The girl may not be broken, but is most definitely troubled and has yet to come to terms with the trauma that’s shaped her. She’s flawed. When questioned about her experiences, she goes on the defensive. The emotions run high not only due to the zombies, but life experiences has made this character have some depth.

 

 

In closing, this book is not for everyone. There is a ton of nudity and F bombs which are peppered throughout many panels. This could easily be dismissed as late night Skinamax, oops I mean Cinemax Walking Dead. That would be too short sighted. There is solid story developing minus the lack of clothes and violence.

You can read all issues printed so far online, so it being sold out is not an excuse! Give it a try and let me know what you think. If you become a fan you can also purchase hats, T-shirts, sweatshirts, mugs, gum, or just about anything they can slap Rags on is available for purchase! There’s marketing in everything now a days huh?

 

Talk soon,

 

 

 

 

Related Posts

2 comments

  • Ben C

    Love this column, thanks Clint!!

  • Skot Whitman

    I came to the same conclusions about this book last night after reading the pages online. it’s a bit deeper than just a skinOmax walking dead as you said. While the artwork is not going to be everyones cup of tea, it was refreshing to see something a little different.

    If the creators happen to read this, I’m going to stick with it, until she gets pants, then i’m out lol

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.