Thursday, March 3, 2016

CBR Duke Nukem: Glorious Bastard

You know, Duke Nukem Forever didn't ruin my love for the Duke. One crappy game didn't cancel an entire frankly fun series.

Did you know the best thing to have come out of this 20+ years trainwreck was a comic book?

Comic title: Duke Nukem: Glorious Bastard – Collected Edition
Written by Tom Waltz
Drawn by Xermanico

Published by IDW Publishing
From 2012
Lineup Duke Nukem series
Format: Trade paperback softcover collecting DUKE NUKEM: GLORIOUS BASTARD issues #1-4.

I can't believe it took this long for Duke Nukem to finally receive his first foray into comics, despite being such a natural combo on paper.

Duke was always meant to be a big plan on old action heroes, and 90s comics were loaded with those. The sad part is that we have to thank Duke Nukem Forever for it!

Duke Nukem: Glorious Bastard is Duke Nukem's first comic book series, published by IDW Publishing in July 2011.

The comic was written by the great Tom Waltz. And illustrated by someone I have no idea if it's their real name or not called "Xermanico". It's the first and only time I've come across this Xermanico.

The paperback also reprints the 22-page comic that IDW produced for the Duke Nukem Forever Balls of Steel Edition.

The King is finally back, baby! And it was about time! Too bad it's in a book and not the actual game...

Our story begins in Germany, 1945! We follow these last remaining soldiers locating a secret Nazi base of operations. They are Elise Plewmann, aka "the French Tickler" (why do they call her that? well, you'll see..), Major General Conner Sean, british airforces, and Corporal Flip Henry, a US soldier.

The Nazis have been cooperating with some kind of alien people from another world - the Vril - who are trying to bring even more alien forces from the other side of the galaxy!

We then cut to present day, Duke was partying with a bunch of babes, you know like usual, when suddenly this old grandma came to see the Duke for his help. Turns out he already saved them, back in 1945! Now Duke must travel back to World War II and ensure the Allied forced defeat this Vril babe named Maria before she overwhelms the tide of war with her alien friends!

That's right, time travel, Nazis, aliens, space pigs and babes! Lots of them! All of them! Ugly aliens, hot alien babes, there's a bit of all that makes Duke Nukem, well, the Duke!

At least there's one hot French Resistance babe waiting for him back on the other side!

Duke Nukem: Glorious Bastard is... pretty funny actually. It's silly, it's nonsensical and it's pretty self-aware like a good Duke Nukem story should be. The art is also pretty good, if fairly standard.

Duke Nukem has often mingled with time travel actually, usually to prevent aliens from taking over the planet.

It's a pretty kickass book. It's kind of stupid at times, but it's "good" stupid with Duke Nukem squaring off against Nazis. How could we go wrong with this formula? Time travel plus Duke Nukem always made for some funny stories.

Duke's always been this fun parody of your typical American macho culture. The comic has a great self-aware tone (which was entirely lacking in Forever). We even get some funny lines and commentary out of the French and British soldiers. And when the situation requires it, we even get Duke more serious when the African-American grunt dies, Duke Nukem gets some of the best dialogue and characterization he ever got in the entire series!

The book also collects the "Balls of Steel Limited Edition video game exclusive pack-in comic" one shot, which came with the collector edition of the game. It's a fun short story taking place somewhere outside Roswell in New Mexico. Duke stops by a desert strip club to enjoy "the three B's" (beers, babes and boobs), which is really one big excuse to retell and pay tribute to one my favorite games in the series, Duke Caribbean, and the Washington expansion pack Duke it out in D.C.. Finally alien pigs interrupt the flashback, Duke kicks ass.

There's also a cover gallery. Funny enough most covers used renders from DNF! And that's the best use to make out of that crappy game. 

Overall, Glorious Bastard is a great Duke Nukem installment done right. Duke is allowed to be fun, kick alien ass, have some one liners, and the whole thing feels like some old school 80s action film! When done right, Duke can be a fun character throwback to times gone by.

If you're a fan of the character, make yourself a favor and read this! It helps clean the foul taste left by Duke Nukem Forever!

The tone here is much closer to Duke Nukem 3D, he's not just a parody of his former self but he's allowed to be a serious voice in his world rather than comedy laughing from all this with audience. Which was one of my main problems with DNF, and it's awful humor and childish tone (let's not even talk about graphics and controls..). This comics does a much better job at capturing the tone of what Duke Nukem should be.

The story is funny, silly, over-the-top and it never takes itself too seriously. Honestly it's what the story of that Duke Nukem Forever game should have been in the first place!

I give it:
2 / 3 Snoopies!

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