Comic Books

Authored by: David M. Higgins , Matthew Iung

The Routledge Companion to Cyberpunk Culture

Print publication date:  December  2019
Online publication date:  November  2019

Print ISBN: 9780815351931
eBook ISBN: 9781351139885
Adobe ISBN:


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This chapter offers a critical and historical overview of European and American cyberpunk comic books, ranging from the importance of Jean “Moebius” Giraud’s visual influence in Métal Hurlant (i.e., Dan O’Bannon’s “The Long Tomorrow”) to later comics such as Enki Bilal’s The Nikopol Trilogy, Frank Miller’s Ronin, Alan C. Martin and Jamie Hewlett’s Tank Girl, Frank Miller and Geof Darrow’s Hard Boiled, Lewis Shiner’s The Hacker Files, Warren Ellis and Darick Robertson’s Transmetropolitian, Paul Pope’s Heavy Liquid, and Rick Remender and Sean Murphy’s Tokyo Ghost. The chapter explores what Carl Freedman describes as the tension between “deflationary” noir sensibilities and punk’s “inflationary” attitude within cyberpunk comics, and it analyzes the ways that the mode reflects the changing economic conditions characteristic of neoliberal globalization since the 1970s. In addition, this chapter examines the tendencies toward cultural appropriation and pervasive misogyny often found in early cyberpunk comics, and it traces key transformations in attitudes concerning race and gender as authors and artists grow increasingly diverse during the early decades of the 21st century.

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