Strontium Dog: Outlaw
John Wagner & Alan Grant
This is a Digest version in black and white. The original ratio is retained so there are large boarders on the top and bottom of the page – you will see this in the preview pages at the end of this article.
Strontium Dog was created by John Wagner and Carlos Ezquerra, the co-creators of Judge Dredd. The iconic character, Johhny Alpha, was introduced in issue one of Starlord (1978) and transitioned over to 2000AD when the comics merged in Prog 86 (1978) after Starlord’s 22 issue run.
Created by exposure to Strontium-90 in fallout following a Nuclear War many of Earth’s citizens are mutated. Having lived under the harsh rule of Nelson Bunker Kreelman the Mutants rose up. One of their leaders was a young man named Johnny Alpha.
When the rebellion was over the leaders were allowed to live only if they became State Bounty Hunters, Search/Destroy Agents or Strontium Dogs.
Unknown to most Johnny is actually the son of Kreelman. Eventually Johnny hunted down his father and trapped him with a Time Bomb leaving him permanently stuck in a loop begging for his life.
Now he is framed for murder by the brothers of a man he killed – Stix.I’ve previewed this from a Pdf copy and everything looks great. Some readers have described difficulty in reading these Digest Editions. Personally from others I have read the only slight difficulty is with any double page spreads – there are none.
There is only one story in this book following the framing of Johnny and his partner Wulf Sternhammer. Including of course their attempts to clear their names.
Along with the Stix brothers there are a number of characters that make a return in this story from earlier times – including from Portrait of a Mutant, the story of the Mutant uprising against Kreelman.
There is plenty of comedy relief to lift the tone of a story that is basically about murder and betrayal. Some of the comedy is ably supplied by The Gronk, Johnny and Wulf’s alien friend and medic – who is prone to heart attacks if alarmed.
The art is Carlos Ezquerra at his best – I don’t thin it suffers from the reduced size here.