The Bulletproof Coffin: Disinterred Makes Perfect Sense and You’re Stupid If You Don’t Get It

Here’s a comic ideal for reading on a train, when the woman next to you is elderly, religious, and patently trying to read over your shoulder. Opening with some full-frontal nudity, Bulletproof Coffin: Disinterred then goes on to offer some beheadings, an alien conspiracy, radioactive (?) jewellery and a police officer who wishes he were a communist-punching superhero.

It absolutely makes sense. Created by writer David Hine and artist Shaky Kane, TBCD seems to be following up on a series of characters who appeared in a previous miniseries and are now getting killed off or dug up. A lot of the book focuses on events which may or may not be making fun of the mainstream comic-book industry, with central characters who both embody and disprove several well-known tropes of the industry. We start off with a man in a tunnel, digging his way either to freedom or an adventure or something, who surfaces to see a superhero being dug up and brought back into existence. This hero, ‘Coffin Fly’, appears for a few pages, brought back both in the comic and by the creative team who created the comic, and then vanishes. He’ll presumably return in another issue?

Next, a beheaded corpse then leads us to meet two different characters, as the comic completely shifts away from the tunnelling man and instead focuses on policeman Johnny P. Sartre, whose ideas about police vigilance have been greatly affected by his love for comics. Determined to prove that every single murder in the city is connected somehow, he slowly becomes either insane or incredibly astute and eventually attributes everything to some kind of alien conspiracy, His partner, Ginger Palmer, is oblivious to the fact that he believes she and he should become communist-smashing caped heroes, in true 1950s-radio style.

A lot of people commit suicide. This all makes absolute sense.

After looking at some jewellery which shines in a bizarre, otherworldly manner (one of which is a gold swastika), he pieces together the fact that everybody he knows is in on this alien conspiracy and proceeds to a final showdown with his nemesis. Sort of. Then he becomes a superhero and the comic ends. Again, there’s satire at work here, but without knowing what happened in the first volume, it races right over the head of just about anybody who reads it new. Sartre, who has an American flag tattooed on his arm and watches good, American cartoons like Top Cat (I think), becomes a delusional madman superhero, and will presumably return later on in the miniseries. Next up, though? Some kind of zombie jazz enthusiast with a mysterious fridge. This all makes absolute sense.

I’m not writing a review here. This is a relatively short piece, because I’m really hoping the comments section is going to go into overdrive.

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