Tank Girl is one of the most iconic British characters to have sprung up over the years, but more that that, she’s one of the few female iconic characters; so it’s nice to see her being published regularly again thanks to Titan Comics. What is a pity is that Tank Girl Gold #1 doesn’t quite live up to the character.
Co-creator Alan Martin (the other creator Jamie Hewlett rarely does comics these days) teams up with artist Brett Patterson and gives us a tale of Sub Girl and Tank Girl under attack from raiders trying to nick the gold bullion they themselves have ‘liberated’ from the bottom of the sea. There’s planes, action and fun but something about it all seems, well, forced. There’s not the abusive whimsy of the classic Deadline strips from the 1990’s, but a more conventional comic strip where there’s baddies to beat and a beginning, middle and end; rather than a middle, maybe a beginning and don’t even think of an ending that makes sense. The Viz-like innuendo though is still there albeit a bit overused.
Stripped of the majority of cultural references and the surreal satire of the Hewlett strips, Tank Girl is just an action hero that swears a lot, which is a pity as there’s much which can be done with the character. As for the art, Brett Patterson does a nice job in keeping it cartoony but not too cartoony, but overall Tank Girl Gold is a tad disappointing as it simply retreads what’s come before without adding anything new.
By all means give it a go, as it does make for a decent read all the same. But those expecting a Tank Girl comic that lives up to predecessors may come out a tad disappointed with Gold #1. That being said, the series isn’t over yet and it might pick up from here, so it’s worth sticking with to see if it gets over this slumpy start. On the other hand, despite it walking on a path all too familiar, it might serve as a good starting point for new readers to get acquainted with the Tank Girl universe.