A Sentimental Cyberpunk Satire Continues In Robocop Citizen’s Arrest #2

by Brendan M. Allen

With growing unrest in the Ruins, OCP is encouraging people to report on their neighbors. The Ruins is a powder keg, with OCP handing out the matches.

In the second chapter of Robocop: Citizens Arrest, OCP’s forced gentrification of Detroit is in full swing. The mysterious CEO has his hand in local politics, law enforcement, and media. The assassination of Alderman Moses Desulma and the resulting riots in the community have accelerated OCP’s plan to raze the Ruins, making way for a new luxury apartment tract.

Brian Wood’s cyberpunk vision pulls in themes of class warfare, commercialization, militarization of police, media bias, globalization, and a privatized justice system. Basically, the media, government, and OCP are in bed to keep the general populace distracted enough to keep them all rich and comfortable.

While the previous issue focused on the mob mentality of crowd sourced justice, this chapter really hones in on how much power the evil corporation actually wields in New Detroit. The CEO is writing his own ticket, on the backs of anyone who dares stand in his way.

Jorge Coelho’s stylized linework and Doug Garbark’s palette are a great fit for the material. Settings have their own distinct identities and palettes, with glaring differences between the run-down, economically downtrodden neighborhoods, the upscale gentrified areas, and the impossibly clean, vinyl news studio. Character designs are realistic and believable, and Murphy retains enough of Peter Weller’s facial structure to visually tie the comic to the ‘87 film.

I don’t see any indication this is a mini series, but the pacing sure feels like it. There are a lot of smash cuts and a few reveals that feel slightly forced, like we have a lot to fit in without a lot of time to do it. That may just be part of the plan for this run. A whole load of fast paced, conflicting imagery and enough information to put the reader on tilt would actually fit the theme, whether or not this is planned for an ongoing.

Robocop: Citizen’s Arrest, published by Boom! Studios, released 09 May 2018. Written by Brian Wood, illustrated by Jorge Coelho, colored by Doug Garbark, lettered by Ed Dukeshire, main cover by Nimit Malavia, alternate cover by David Rubin.

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