Friday, January 18, 2013

Review: DUB TRUB: “Our World is in Danger Now!”

CANDLE LIGHT PRESS/Warning Comics – @candlelightpres

CARTOONIST: Carter Allen
ISBN: 978-0-9766053-7-9; paperback
PIN-UP: Jeremy Smith
108pp, Color, $10.95 U.S.

Dub Trub: “Our World is in Danger Now!” is a 2003 graphic novel from comic book creator, Carter Allen. Allen is a writer/artist and graphic novelist who has produced several comic book series and graphic novels. “Our World is in Danger Now!” is the first in a sci-fi adventure and comic space opera series that follows a pair of enhanced, female super-soldiers, who lead the fight against an extraterrestrial invasion of Earth.

Originally published in black and white, Dub Trub: “Our World is in Danger Now!” returns in a 2012 color edition. The book looks good, because, as I said years ago, Dub Trub should be in color.

The title characters of Dub Trub are Special Agent Red and Special Agent Black. Red is a brunette who wears red sunglasses, and Black is red-haired hellion who wears black shades. Like a cross between Buffy the Vampire Slayer and the X-Men’s Rogue, this duo is at the forefront of the fight against the Voyd, an extraterrestrial horde invading Earth. The Voyd essentially leads an interstellar Axis of alien races fighting on their side, such as the Khan’Leb, a mercenary race hired by the Voyd to help with human subjugation. Over land, air, and sea, with visits to the moon, New York City, and Moscow, Red and Black lead the charge in the fight to save Earth and humanity.

Not only have I previously read Dub Trub: “Our World is in Danger Now!,” I have also read the other Dub Trub graphic novels. Reading this color edition of “Our World is in Danger Now!,” however, I feel as if I’ve read it for the first time. The color makes the art pop off the page, and it also makes more obvious how Dub Trub relates to other science fiction, fantasy, and comic book works.

With the debut of new versions of such characters as Flash (1956) and Green Lantern (1959), the DC Comics of what is called the Silver Age of comics had a Space Age quality to it. It was a kind of futuristic, forward-looking attitude that remains with the publisher to this day. In terms of story and art, Dub Trub seems like a neo-Silver Age DC comic book. I can imagine Gil Kane and Julius Schwartz tinkering with this book.

Carter Allen also recalls World War II-era comic books with the Voyd ably stepping in for Nazi Germany and the Axis. In the last of the book’s four chapters, Allen juxtaposes WWII-like propaganda with the story of a lonely and weary foot soldier. I never thought of these things when I first read this book, but color brings out so much more subtext and layers to the story.

If you have not before, here is another chance to read Dub Trub: “Our World is in Danger Now!” It’s certainly prettier than before.


Reviewed by Leroy Douresseaux

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