What is ‘cyberpunk’ in the 2020s? The cynical response would be that we’re living it, but as the world continues to change at a frightening pace, Killtopia retains its crystal-clear vision of that alternate world of neon and grime. Back with a third instalment, Dave Cook & Clark Bint’s Killtopia Volume 3 picks up where Volume 2 left-off, Shinji and Crash are reunited after an explosive siege at Stiletto Corp, and Crash must use his code to cure the Rot. While deep in the ruins of Killtopia, a new threat stirs in the form of a malfunctioning line of companion dolls with a curious case of a God complex.
The most striking thing about Killtopia Volume 3 is how fresh and inventive it continues to be. Taking over the reins from Craig Paton, the comic has an all-new artist in Clark Bint. And with big boots to fill. The first two entries setting a high bar with their colourful and poppy rendering of its neon-soaked setting that provided the series with an instantly iconic look. But Clark makes the transition look effortless, delivering his own definitive take but still filling each page with the same gorgeous, gritty and often gory detail that makes the series so delightful to read, and so impossible to put down.
However it’s the worldbuilding from Dave Cook that takes centre stage in this latest entry, with the series seriously expanding its footprint. Elevating Killtopia from a raucous tongue-in-cheek take on the cyberpunk genre (now complete with pay-to-gasms and test tube dog farms), to a much deeper and more complex universe that might have first been expected. In Volume 3 we’re introduced to Yurei, a hive-mind of sex dolls intent on bringing about some kind of singularity, and ending the human race in the process. While the true origins of Crash, the first sentient AI, reveal him to be much more than he seems. All the while an ever-growing web of Yakuza politics simmers in the background, promising yet more enticing developments to come.
With Killtopia optioned for an animated series, to be written by Phil Gelatt of Love, Death and Robots fame, there’s never been a better time to dive into this smart and hilarious take on the cyberpunk genre. Both a fantastic example of what the indie comics scene is capable of and an extremely fun read in its own right, take a break from the current dystopia and lose yourself in this one, you won’t regret it.
Killtopia Volume 3 is out 30th June from BHP Comics
(9781910775288, p/b, £8.99)
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And go back to where it all began with our Killtopia Vol 1 review.