Monday, April 30, 2012

Tongue Lash #1 & 2

Written by Randy and Jean-Marc Lofficier
Art by Dave Taylor

I often rely on serendipity and chance when cruising through bargain bins.  Recently, among a trove of Dark Horse mini-series sets of the last fifteen years (lots of licensed comics, lots of Mignola), I came across this two-issue mini-series, which I could tell nothing about except for its price (very reasonable).  I googled it on my phone, and learned that it was was written by Randy and Jean-Marc Lofficier, a pair of French comics writers best known in North America for their translations of and work with the recently late Jean Giraud, Moebius.

Fame by association works for me, and I remember enjoying the Lofficier's work on The Elsewhere Prince, a Moebius spin-off that I read many years ago.  Continuing this connection, upon opening the first comic, I read that the series was "inspired" by the works of Moebius, which was instantly apparent from Dave Taylor's art.

Tongue Lash is a science-fiction detective novel, set in a weirdly Aztec future.  Our heroes, Tonge and Lash, are private investigators, who are hired by a wealthy young woman to investigate the prostitute that her powerful father has fallen in love with.  There's a lot more going on that than though, in this story that involves human/animal hybrids, the ability to shunt into metatime, and a system of slavery or indentured servitude.  Nothing is really explained, and the reader is left to his or her own devices to figure out what's going on, and what the many Aztec (or Aztec-like) terms sprinkled throughout the dialogue mean.

It's not hard to imagine why this series was never collected into a trade, as it's a challenging read, and ultimately more strange than compelling.  It is very pretty though, and Taylor really pushed himself to design some very unique images in this bizarre world.  I liked the series, but I feel like I probably missed a lot, and Taylor's lettering just annoyed me.

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