Review: Barb Wire Vol. 2 #1
This series comes in the wake of so many reboots or reimaginings of characters that had been popular in other times. Although this trend is more popular at Dynamite as it utilizes characters in the public domain, Dark Horse is also known to do so. In this case though the character has always belonged to Dark Horse, and even relatively recently, having been big in the 1990s at the same time as the Bad Girls were making a mark for themselves across the medium. Barb Wire was a little different from the regular Bad Girl though. A common theme among the Bad Girls was a connection to the occult, and Barb Wire had little to do with it, instead relying on her skills and cunning in a semi-dystopian future America. She is a bar owner and bounty hunter in the town of Steel Harbor, and ends up being somewhat of a hero as she cleans up the streets of the city.
For those that liked the character in the 90s and wanted more, then this is likely the series for them. There is in fact not much which is different, between Barb being on the hunt for a bail jumper, someone calling her “babe” and the immediate fallout of that and then a long time spent hanging at her bar until some other scheme or development takes place. In the case of this issue though there is a bit of an update which would be necessary compared to the world of the 1990s, specifically with texting being such an important part of society now, it is also mentioned here. Also the corporations seem to fit into a bit of a more evil stereotype here, thanks in part to the occupy movements effect on pop culture.
There is probably no one that will expect a masterpiece out of this series, and rightfully so. The concept is not that original, nor was it even original when it first came out. It is built on characters that might have been a bit edgy at the time, but pop culture has since given us a decent selection of badass babes (sorry) that make Barb only one among their ranks. At the same time this issue manages to effectively update the series and the characters and to give them new blood. It might not be a masterpiece but it is fun and worth a look, though it is hard to imagine that the series gains too much traction.
Story: Chris Warner Art: Patrick Olliffe
Story: 7.5 Art: 7.5 Overall: 7.5 Recommendation: Read
Dark Horse provided Graphic Policy with a free copy for review