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Review – Alex Automatic Vol 1

Review - Alex Automatic Vol 1

Review – Alex Automatic Vol 1

Writer: Fraser Campbell

Artist: James Corcoran

Colourist: David B. Cooper

Letterer: Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou

Publisher: Cabal Comics

Available: On Kickstarter

ALEX AUTOMATIC Volume One: Where is my Mind?

ALEX AUTOMATIC Volume One: Where is my Mind? is a 220+ page graphic novel collection coming this summer. Alex Automatic is a psychedelic super-spy adventure story where retro fun like Stingray, Joe 90, Danger Man, Department S, and The Prisoner collides with Mr. Robot, Legion, The Long Kiss Goodnight, and The Bourne Identity to create a feverish modern psychological thriller.

Review - Alex Automatic Vol 1

With a new Kickstarter campaign scheduled to launch 30th April 2021, it is written by Fraser Campbell, with art by James Corcoran, colour art by David B. Cooper and lettering/design by Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou. 

The Kickstarter will offer the chance to buy digital and print versions of the book, as well as the chance to own original art from issues of ALEX AUTOMATIC and other unique rewards, such as one of a kind commissions from series artist, James Corcoran.

The story…

Secret agent Alex Anderson has been subjected to a series of illegal experiments to enhance his abilities by a shadowy agency known only as PRISM. However, the process has gone horribly wrong, leaving Alex trapped inside the delusion that he is the indestructible cyborg super-spy hero of the 1970’s TV show, ALEX AUTOMATIC. A TV show that exists entirely inside Alex’s own head.

On paper, Alex is the perfect agent, docile, efficient, erasable and rewritable. But in reality, the process has left him a volatile and dangerous mess and when our story begins, he is being held in stasis in a secure PRISM facility. However, two well-meaning journalists find out about him and break him out, thinking they’re getting a great story while setting an innocent man free. They soon realise they have no idea what they’ve unleashed.

Can Alex piece the shattered shards of his mind back together and rediscover the man he once was? Or is he doomed to be hunted down by PRISM and turned once again into their mindless killer?

“Alex Automatic stemmed from James and I talking about how much we loved the old Gerry Anderson TV Century 21 shows and the ITC shows like The Prisoner, Danger Man, and Department S. The ideas we came up with soon snowballed into a combination of the innocent fun and cool production design of these shows with a much more serious story about alienation, disassociation and the overwhelming mania of modern reality. If you enjoy stuff like The Prisoner, The Long Kiss Goodnight, and Mr. Robot but also love comics like Velvet, Human Target, Winter Soldier, Queen & Country, Zero, M.A.C.H. 1, Black Widow, Miracleman, Casanova, and The Invisibles, this should be right up your alley.”

Fraser Campbell
Review - Alex Automatic Vol 1

Creative Team

Fraser Campbell: Fraser is the writer of comics Alex Automatic, Sleeping Dogs, Heart of Steal, The Edge Off, House of Sweets and IND-XED. Fraser has also written extensively for radio and the stage.

James Corcoran: James is the artist on Alex Automatic. Originally from Scotland, James is currently based in London. James is an aficionado of European and British comics and continues to work on many upcoming projects.

David B. Cooper: David is a prolific cartoonist and colourist from Glasgow, with professional credits that include Image Comics. David is the creator behind a range of small press works such as The Price, Bruce, Dead Silence and Face Down In The Mud.

Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou: Hassan is a comics letterer half from Algeria and half from England. He’s also the voice behind Strip Panel Naked, and the Editor of the Eisner winning PanelxPanel magazine. You can usually find him explaining to his parents that comics are actually a real job.

Review – Alex Automatic Vol 1 continues below.

BGCP Overall Thoughts

Whoa, what the heck did I just read? I feel that I’ve just eaten the wrong batch of mushrooms and came out of a very bad trip! Alex Automatic hurts your head to read, not from bad writing but from confusion, horror, and deprivation. I finished the book and have to stand as I was feeling light-headed, this is trippy stuff. Campbell and Corcoran have hit on a rich vein of madness here.

This book takes four attempts at least to read and make sense but why should reading be easy and comfortable?

This is not for everybody but if you like trippy shows like The Prisoner, New Avengers or Joe 90 get yourself over to the Kickstarter and get volume 1 of Alex Automatic Where is my Mind? I’m giving this a solid 4 stars, I’d give it more but I think I need to lie down!

STOP THE PRESS! You can find an interview with Fraser on the BGCP Disassembled Podcast

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Michael Lennox

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T'was a cold dark night in East Kilbride... and below the roundabouts, something old and ancient began to shudder awake. The world would rue the day that it gave the Green Jaguar comics to read!

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