I love a good vigilante. X is probably my favorite vigilante in comics currently, but the perils he goes through are still very much rooted in the superhero world and sensationalized with regenerative health and ridiculous feats of acrobatic athleticism. Liberator, however, showcases the all-too-real serving of justice through two ordinary people with an extraordinary fervor for helping and saving defenseless animals from their cruel owners. Also, Liberator doesn’t feature just one, but two heroes. Damon is more or less the main character, but due to the nature of this article series I’ll be talking about his co-worker at and partner in justice, Jeanette. Damon says that Jeanette is pretty well-known around the community as being one of the fiercest and most frequent protestors for animal rights (sometimes this ends her up in jail). Damon respects Jeanette, but thinks that spending time in jail is a waste of time because instead of being in jail she could be out helping animals. He stays away from the protests, but before he knows it Jeanette welcomes herself to one of his own plots of revenge on exposing the cruel treatment of animals inside the McMartin Fur Farm. Jeanette’s character is clearly independently minded which we see as she explains to Damon why she chooses to protest. She wanted to be a scientist, but discovered her university was using animals and essentially torturing them from the science experiments they conducted just for grant money. The experiments involved pouring oven cleaner into rabbits’ eyes, injecting monkeys with crystal meth, and breaking puppies’ legs to test their pain tolerance. She got out of that program and changed her major. But in Liberator #2, she gets to return and have her revenge along with Damon on her school’s science program. Her strong personality also serves for some comedic relief like when she asks Damon if they’re going to take down McMartin’s like a superhero team-up. When Damon replies “Like Batman and Robin?” Jeanette says “Fuck that unless you’re planning on being Robin. I was thinking more like Nightwing and Batgirl.”
The trade for this book was just released on Wednesday, and although I’ve only read the first two issues I really enjoy it so far and plan on picking the trade up. Plus, Matt Miner clearly has great taste in music for bands that actually have something important to say because he has Jeannette’s ringtone a Propagandhi song. Liberator has also recently teamed up with vegan straight edge stalwarts Earth Crisis for a two issue miniseries that looks great. Although Destroying the Machines came out a few weeks after my first birthday, it’s become one of my favorite albums and they clearly stand behind what they portray in their lyrics. Be sure to check out James’s review, pick up the trade if you like what you see, and 30% of the profits will go to animal rescue initiatives.