If it’s one thing that Mixed Martial Arts and YouTube videos of Russians punching each other in the face have taught us, it’s that great fights don’t necessarily need to be long, nor do they need to be technical, involved or pretty. Sometimes, all you want to see is a tussle with an explosion of action and a mic drop. Hit it and quit it, just like your mom used to say. Well, if that’s the kind of short attention span yarn you’re after, then6 Barrel Shotgun is one hell of a way to spend five minutes. This tight little mini-comic tells the story of post-apocalyptic desert outlaw, Crater Fury, who is accompanied (presumably as always) by her Combustion Falcon (a sort of giant bird of prey/motorcycle hybrid), who answers to the name Righteous, and has a retractable shotgun compartment. Fuck yes. We meet up with the pair in mid-descent as they swoop upon their kill: two beings called Kive and Okk. Roguish aliens? Murderous robots? Surly mutants? We’re never really told, but we do know they are at least one thing: Dicks.
The multi-armed menaces, who sort of look like they’ve outgrown bad Storm Trooper cosplay outfits, are on the run after having destroyed something called a Church-Bus, which sounds terrible. They’re running away from the scene of the crime and toward a water tower and car dealership, respectively ... I guess cause they’re up for a bit of terrestrial strange? Unfortunately for them, though, Fury has closed in on them to deliver sweet justice of the Righteous, and she does so here through a considerable amount of blood, sweat and flayed skin.
As you can see, this isn’t the kind of book which will, in its 18 pages, change your life or expand your mind. It’s also got a few problems. For example, other than Righteous, we are not directly told the names of these characters (I had to get them from the summary description at the front of my digital copy), much less their pasts, motivations or anything else of note that may help define their characterization. We also only get glimpses of this world in which they are set, populated as it is by vehicular salvation, machined wildlife and horny mutant robot aliens. So, this is where I usually say that each of these is a sin of omission ... but in 6 Barrel Shotgun, it’s part of the fun.
Like I said earlier, this is a quick brawl - a nameless donnybrook - not a glorious war, and taken as such, it’s a satisfying distraction. Fury receives the bulk of what characterization there is, and that’s enough to make her one of the most badassiest badasses I’ve seen in a while, and not only because she Leeroy Jenkinses her own name as a battle cry. I just love how simple this story is - snarling revenge and wet redemption all compressed into a little spitfire book. I also kind of love the way she beats the aliens, because [SPOILER] nothing seals a victory quite like throwing a fully-loaded pair of skeleton rock ‘n roll horns to the eyes ... they never see it coming. Plus, that bit of creative math at the end is some stellar shit-talking.
The art from Faerber completely follows suit; sketchy, filthy, fun and manic, it looks like Matt Kindt doing a Ren & Stimpy cartoon or something, and it just works. I’m not sure if there are any other stories in this universe - a quick Google search suggests not - but I’d definitely be interested in seeing more. For now, though, this is like comic book fast food: tasty and easy to consume, filling in its own way and cheap like borscht. Normally, I’d say this isn’t for everyone - and really it isn’t - but fuck it, if you’re looking to buy a bite-sized beat-down for a buck, there are not many better places to get your bang than 6-Barrel Shotgun!
Writer: Austin Wilson
Artist: Logan Faerber
Release Date: 6/19/13