Future Beat #1 1986 $1.50
Oasis Comics Merritt Island, Florida by Tracy Schell and Richard Johnson
Welcome to the Future Beat! Our tale begins with a mysterious gunman waiting in the shadows as a lady walks out of a dark room and out into the street. The gunman stops her and addresses her as if she is his lover. She doesn't seem to recognize him and seems confused when he begins questioning her.
But the questions give way to violence and he shoots her dead right there in the street. The next scene we see officer Bill Corben entering a seedy bar demanding to speak to someone by the name of Leo Ginelli. The bartender tells him to take a hike but Corben takes a moment to explain things to the smug tapster!
But as soon as Corben heads the way the barman motions he's stopped by a big dude in a suit. I swear this feels like one of those side scroller '80's games like Bad Dudes or something. I love it already!
Corben finds his way to Ginelli's office and starts chatting with the villainous looking businessman.
Ginelli doesn't seem intimidated by our man Corben and tells him to either arrest him or leave. Corben reluctantly exits, but not before telling Ginelli he'll be seeing him again soon.
We cut to the gunman from the first page alone in his spacious bedroom as he is seemingly about to let his other personality ("The Man") out to wreak more destruction.
Another crime scene. Another young lady. Corben approaches and takes a good look at the victim. Corby speaks up his theory that the killings are related. Not only that but he believes the killer is targeting specific women to get the attention of Ginelli's crime family.
We see a shadowy figure speaking with Ginelli via a view screen. He refers to this latest victim as his clientele and the third one killed this month! He seems pissed. Ginelli says he'll take care of it.
At the police precinct they discuss the murders. They vaguely refer to the places that the murders are taking place as ran by crime families and the victims as some kind of criminal. I'm starting to put together that these are abortion clinics...maybe? I dunno.
After the meeting one of the other cops asks Corben to go out for a drink. Corben informs him he only drinks coffee. That's right, Corby! Straight Fuckin' Edge! I would be straight edge too if I didn't smoke weed and drink beer. And caffeine. I have some caffeine once every day or two. Are vitamins allowed if you're straight edge? I take a B Complex pill with breakfast as well.
Corben has a coffee with the other cop and ends up saying something awkward about the killer maybe not being such a sicko really. The other cop seems confused so they change the subject. He asks Corben who the lady in the photo on his end table is. Corben responds that it's his deceased wife. He seems flustered and asks the other cop to leave so he can get to bed.
We cut to the killer as he looks at himself in the bathroom mirror. 'The Man' is struggling to get out again. Violence is on the horizon once more.
And that's how the story ends. Is this killer some kind of other personality of Corben? Will he be stopped before he can claim another innocent life? Are people seeking abortions criminals in the future? I honestly can't get a handle on any answers to those questions after reading this first issue. There is in fact an issue two out there somewhere according to the internet, but I haven't seen it in my cheap bin diving thus far.
Oh well, I did enjoy this book even if it was a bit vague with it's plot points. The art was pretty nice and by a guy named Richard Johnson. Dick Johnson... I think he might do porn now.
And speaking of something for you to spank it to, here's my rendition of Corben:
I also want to say what a great cover this issue had. The color and logo design are top notch. The very definition of '80's design and visuals.
Also, there is a seven page backup story in this comic that I didn't read. It just looked incredibly boring and extremely wordy with absolutely no relation to the main story so I just skipped it. But if you pick up a copy and it's worth reading let me know. Is that a deal? Awesome.
And speaking of awesome... here's next month's book.
See you next month!