Tales of An Imperfect Future – Alfonso Font
The gritty pen and ink drawings of Spanish artist Alfonso Font are quintessentially late 1970’s comic art. Think Metal Hurlant or 2000AD. Milo Manara comes to mind.
While stylistically it seems a little bit dated now, the stories are really quite clever. It’s a collection of short stories of biting satire. The bridge that connects them all is the device of a hideous alien who comments on the folly of humanity and their self destructive capacity.
A messenger runs in to announce to a group of military, political and religious leaders congratulating one another on the success of their implacable killing machine that has destroyed their foes, that the ship has been spotted returning to Earth. Two stiffs sent to a planet to observe the suitability of human life on it, are being driven around the bend by the non stop rain, and possibly being driven to their death by their only companion, a talking computer. A brave warrior battling and defeating monsters to save his people and his beloved princess, has the virtual reality helmet removed and we find this diversion was his reward from his employer for a few decades of loyal service. A captain of military industry convinces the political rulers of his calculus that a war must continue forever for the good of the economy, as injured soldiers pine for an end while lying in the mud. A family living in a dystopian wasteland are unaware they are about to become the prey of televised reality show hunters who are out for ratings and organs to harvest for the ultra-wealthy.
This and several other stories offer up some ominous satire to ponder. The art, while certainly of an era, is obviously the work of a talented illustrator.