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junkwaffel 1 1st
solid writing
exceptional art
historical bonus 2
total score 7
Junkwaffel #1
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1st Printing / 1971 / 36 pages / The Print Mint
Junkwaffel #1 primarily features stories set in a time when humans have been obliterated from the planet (save one), yet the sophisticated machines they created to fight their wars are still fighting each other. Some of the war machines were designed with high-level artificial intelligence, so they improve and redesign themselves to better combat the enemy.

The key story in Junkwaffel #1 is "Machines," which begins with detailed renderings and descriptions of four war machines. The story that follows features the lone human left on the planet, who is hiding in an underground bunker and believes there may be other humans in hiding, waiting like him for the war machines to destroy each other, bringing a long-awaited end to the violence. As the human sleeps, the machines above ground continue to wage their endless, cruel and meaningless wars.

"Machines" is followed by two short stories based on the characters introduced in "Machines." The concepts crafted by Bodé are intriguing, but the execution of the stories falls a bit short of their potential. Not that the stories are bad (they're actually pretty good), but there are some powerful possibilities that might have really made them special that Bodé didn't explore.

My favorite story here is the four-page "Tubs" (part one of two), which opens the book and is about a small planet that faces starvation from overpopulation. Their fate lies in the hands of an inventor of a time machine, who plans to travel back in time, slaughter dinosaurs for food and bring them back to the present.
There are three printings of this comic book, all of them easily distinguished by the cover price. The 1st printing (30,000 copies) was published by the Print Mint and has a 50-cent cover price. The 2nd printing (10,000 copies) is by the Print Mint and has a 75-cent cover price. The 3rd printing (unknown copies) is by Last Gasp and has a $2.50 cover price.
Vaughn Bodé - 1-36