Deadenders #1, 2
[Vertigo/DC Comics $2.50 US $3.95 CAN]
Written by Ed Brubaker / Pencilled by Warren Pleece / Inked by Richard Case
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Deadenders #1Bartholomew Beezenback a.k.a Beezer lives in Sector 5 of New Bedlam, USA where he hangs out with his friends, avoids his family and school and peddles amphetamines (amp) to make ends meet. The bleak, desolate world in which Beezer and his friends survive was much different before they were born. Twenty years ago, a nuclear cataclysm sent the have nots into fenced off ghettos and the haves into sectors where powerful artificial weather machines give the illusion of sun and clouds.

At first glance, Beezer is just another punk kid drug dealer. But he’s got a special gift that allows him to see visions of a world unpolluted and filled with blue skies and sunlight. Beezer doesn’t know why he has these visions or what they mean. They’re making his life hell and, unbeknownst to him, is the reason the corrupt city cops are searching for him at all his usual haunts.

If Ed Brubaker’s excellent Scene of the Crime mini-series hadn’t convinced me to pick this new series up the compelling short story in Vertigo Winter’s Edge III would have. These two issues introduce Bring Beezer’s life and his friends and leave you wanting more. Brubaker has crafted a vibrant dystopian world and if the head honchos at Vertigo were smart they’d promote the hell out of this new ongoing series.

Warren Pleece is listed as a co-creator of this series and supplies the pencils. I’ve always been kind of lukewarm on Pleece’s art but not for any deficiency in storytelling ability. I’m most familiar with his fill-in issues on Sandman Mystery Theatre which visually were not as strong as Guy Davis’ issues. However, Richard Case on inks has given Pleece’s style a definite presence that works perfectly with the story.

If your local shop is sold out of this series bug them to reorder more. You can visit the DC Comics web site at www.dccomics.com.