LIT: Transmetropolitan

Damien R. Sullivan (
Sat, 28 Feb 1998 14:54:22 -0800 (PST)

A somewhat extropian comic book out now is _Transmetropolitan_ (DC,
Helix label.) It's focused on Spider Jerusalem, a journalist in The
City in the future, year intelligently avoided. It has all the goodies
without a Singularity: cryonic revivals, body morphing (the first issues
deal with people with alien DNA), genetic engineering (two-headed,
cigarette smoking, fairly smart cat), intelligence enhancing drugs, a
President whose Secret Service are charging him privately, pervasive
networked computers, utility fogs. The book has been called cyberpunk
but I don't think I've seen any of the classic cyberpunk elements;
people just don't know their SF.

First three issues are Spider returning to the City, and covering the
alien-DNA people. I don't know how the aliens (Streiber style) got to
Earth, but apparently they're pretty poor; all they have to sell are
cultural artifacts and their own genes. The Cat is found.

The seventh issue features people being 'downloaded' into 'foglets' --
what we could call being 'uploaded' into a 'utility fog'. Except the
foglets might be the components, the people called foglet people. I
think the verb switch may make sense, if it was chosen by the foglet
people, not the meat-people, who after all are dead once they've

The eighth issue deals with cryonics revivals, who all go into shock
upon seeing the City. So there is a horizon Singularity in effect, but
no one's called it that. All the current people regard things as

Violence is high by my standards, but low by most comics, I'd guess.
Writing and artwork seem good. And it's fun having a trans-city as

-xx- GCU Mindstalker X-)

"It's perfectly accurate, the accuracy only possessable by subjunctive
syllogisms." -- DRS