Before Walter Simonson’s work with Marvel and DC, there was Star Slammers, a series first devised by Simonson during his college days.
The Slammers would later be resurrected as a Marvel graphic novel, and then a miniseries. Simonson describes it thus: “Once upon a time, there was a race of men who could out-shoot, out-fight, and out-kill anybody. They were paid fabulous sums to act as mercenaries. The practice became so lucrative, they decided to go into business. They became the most successful businessmen in history, and they called themselves…The Star Slammers!”
The collected Star Slammers also features–published here for the very first time–Simonson’s earliest version of the Slammers created for his college thesis at the Rhode Island School of Design.
These stories predate his first professional comics work but strongly show the artist’s keen sense of composition and design.
Star Slammers totally blew me away when it first came out as an original Marvel graphic novel back in the ’80s – the old school oversized ones, mind you. I’ve read that story a hundred times at least. The concept of space samurai mercenaries was just more awesome than I could easily bear. I ate it up.
But, sadly, that’s where the story ended for more than a decade, until Malibu Comics agreed to publish a new Slammers story in the 1990’s, this time a five part serial. More space pulp than hard bitten merc story, it was still pretty fantastic and it did my heart good to see the Slammers back in action.
This volume is the first time both stories were collected in a single, seamless volume. The art is, in my opinion, some of Simonson’s best. For the uninitiated, this volume is a fantastic way to be introduced into the magnificent world of the Star Slammers.
I first read the Star Slammers way back in the ’80’s with the Marvel Graphic Novel version. I was hooked immediately. The whole “space samurai/mercenary” vibe was exactly what I was looking for at the time. As I got older, the parallels to the Dorsai were evident, but even then it didn’t matter. The ‘Slammers were my go-to for military sci-fi,…[Read more]