MIKE DANGER #2 (1995)
Publisher: Tekno Comix
Writer: Max Allan Collins
Pencils: Eduardo Barreto

Gems in the Bin is a weekly column where I select a comic book from the $.25 bin at Fanfare Sports and Entertainment in Kalamazoo, Michigan for review. Will I strike gold or will I pay too much for an awful comic that should have been shredded? This week, I am reviewing Mike Danger #2 from Tekno Comix.

I’m a fan of hardboiled and crime noir tales.  Blast of Silence is a fantastic low budget black and white film with great dialogue.  The Postman Always Rings Twice by James Cain or The Big Sleep by Raymond Chandler are required readings for hardboiled fans.  It is a fantastic genre.

Discovering Mike Danger #2 in the $.25 bin was cool because it was based on a character by Mickey Spillane and Max Allan Collins.  I had high hopes for the comic book, and I was not totally impressed. Once again, I have lost another quarter to the bin.

The story begins in 1952. Mike Danger is a detective who discovers that certain members of the Third Reich were kept in ‘hiber chambers’ in a secret laboratory, so they could be opened in the future and take over the world.  The plan is foiled by Danger, but the laboratory catches on fire and Danger must find protection in an empty ‘hiber chamber’.  Danger didn’t realize that he’d be put to sleep for ages when he entered a ‘hiber chamber’.

The ‘hiber chamber’ is discovered 100 years later. Danger is awakened in 2052, some thirty years following a major nuclear war. A group of government agents need him as an investigator because there are apparently no investigators in the future.  Maybe they all died in the nuclear war.

Mike Danger #2 ends with a murder cliffhanger and I have no interest to see what happens next because this story did not earn my full attention. As a character, Mike Danger is a one-dimensional bore and his supporting cast lacks a standout.  The murder cliffhanger didn’t work for me because the person who gets killed used an old revolver instead of some high tech weapon. Am I to believe that there are hired killers in 2052 who still swear by the revolver?

While the story was dull, the artwork was good. The panels by Eduardo Barreto flowed well and Steve Leiahola, the inker, did a very nice job of putting some noir shading to give the reader a nice noir feel.

This wasn’t a gem, but I’ve got another comic book for next week, so let’s hope for something good.


TonyDoug Wright is the owner and head writer at Champion City Comics, a webcomics community, and at The Lost Soul of Rock and Roll, a weekday rock music blog. He is also a proud father and is married to the coolest and most beautiful girl on the planet.