Transmetropolitan, Vol. 2: Lust for Life

Transmetropolitan, Vol. 2: Lust for Life

Outlaw journalist Spider Jerusalem has become a household name in the future City he calls home. This latest collection of twisted tales showcases Spider's horrific yet funny screeds on subjects as diverse as religion, politics, and his ex-wife's cryogenically frozen head (which has been stolen). "Transmetropolitan" has been called "brilliant future-shock commentary"...

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Title:Transmetropolitan, Vol. 2: Lust for Life
Author:Warren Ellis
Rating:
Edition Language:English

Transmetropolitan, Vol. 2: Lust for Life Reviews

  • Sam Quixote

    This second volume is where we really see the series find its feet and we launch fully into the weird and wonderful world of Spider Jerusalem's with a tale about humans wanting to turn into sentient gas clouds, the harrowing story of the cryogenically unfrozen, synthetic reservations where you could choose to live in a past civilisation, and finally a three part story of Spider's ex-wife's revenge.

    All of the stories have the verbal acrobatics and freewheeling genius level writing of Warren Ellis

    This second volume is where we really see the series find its feet and we launch fully into the weird and wonderful world of Spider Jerusalem's with a tale about humans wanting to turn into sentient gas clouds, the harrowing story of the cryogenically unfrozen, synthetic reservations where you could choose to live in a past civilisation, and finally a three part story of Spider's ex-wife's revenge.

    All of the stories have the verbal acrobatics and freewheeling genius level writing of Warren Ellis in every panel helped along with Darick Robertson's superb artwork. All of the stories have elements of originality, humour, and artfully expressed bile through the increasingly more interesting figure of the most hateful man on the planet, Spider Jerusalem. The book serves to introduce the reader more fully into this world where the grotesque and comical elements of society converge joyfully on the page and shows the reader that in this series anything can happen.

    The three part story that closes this book, "Freeze Me with your Kiss", is fantastic and worth buying this book for alone. Spider's ex-wife (a frozen head) manages to organise a hit on him before she froze herself so Spider goes on the run from a squad of assassins who hate the outside world. Throw in a headless child bomb, an allusion to a war against France where the loser lost the ability to speak French, ever, and a castrated police bulldog with brain damage who only lives to murder Spider, and its amazing how much brilliance Ellis and Robertson cram into a short story and turn it into pure reading gold.

    If you've never read "Transmetropolitan" go back and read the first book then dive headfirst into this second one. I'm re-reading the series and can tell you every book is worth reading, and "Lust for Life" is Spider Jerusalem at his filthiest best.

  • Irena

    Unlike with other comics, I've decided not to read this one at all unless I've got a real copy of it in my hands.

    I loved it from the very start and I'm still fascinated by it, despite its often too disgusting depictions of horrible things. Basically, it explores various ideas of our future. Obviously we'd have progressed in technology and medicine, allowing us to live longer and to alter our physique to our likings. We got a good saying in Bosnia going: "once you have the finger, you want the

    Unlike with other comics, I've decided not to read this one at all unless I've got a real copy of it in my hands.

    I loved it from the very start and I'm still fascinated by it, despite its often too disgusting depictions of horrible things. Basically, it explores various ideas of our future. Obviously we'd have progressed in technology and medicine, allowing us to live longer and to alter our physique to our likings. We got a good saying in Bosnia going: "once you have the finger, you want the whole hand" and that's exactly how humans work. Of course we wouldn't be satisfied with just living longer or altering our looks in cases of terrible accidents. We'd want a third tit, 2 meter penis, no digestive system; no, wait, no embodiment of ourselves at all! We'd want to be but a pink fluff cloud, sparkly and dreamy! Our boyfriends would masturbate over vending machines, our women would switch off their entire reproductive system to the non-existence of any sexual organs whatsoever. Some would download their minds and replace themselves with whatever else, upload

    onto whatever elses and continue their existence like that. Okkay.

    Some of us would simply not be able to cope with it. Any of it.

    We'd abuse whatever we come up with because we get so quickly bored with everything. Why are there such explicit, bizarre ero guro things in Japan culture (spreading elsewhere now too)? It's because they progressed faster than the rest, got quicker bored and it just had to become sexually attractive to fuck someone with their entire intestines out. Hot. Not only that exists, but it's become pretty normal, everyday stuff now. Yeeap.

    The picture above is pretty much how I feel about things happening nowadays and when I see the comic exploring it further, so much further into the future, I'm glad my lifespan wont be longer than 60ish years.

    Whatever I just said, doesn't change the fact that the comic is amazing. It's the content of the story that disgusts me and that is all. The way it is told, the way the main character is developed, the way that Channon is everything but annoying is brilliant!

    In this volume, we got Spider somewhat accepting and being fascinated by the new tech (remember, he was up on the mountains for years himself, totally cut off from the civilization).

    Then, in the next few issues, the volume explores the possibility of freezing oneself and what happens once you awaken, suddenly in a completely changed world. Then how old cultures could be preserved in different reservations:

    then how possibly animals (or humans who changed forms) could be the police enforcement..Well, lots of food for thought, lots of action, lots of low lives, awesome main character and a great story.

  • Patrick

    This might surprise some people, but dark and angry as his work often is, I think of Ellis as a very hopeful writer. So often his work seems to say, "Look at this. Look how awful this is. Look how shitty people can be. We can do better than this. We're all better than this."

  • Sr3yas

    Spider Jerusalem is a certified douchebag. But like every celebrity douchebags, he is also a huge hit. Everybody loves his gloriously controversial column

    A Column which spider uses to tear a new one for some unlucky sap or a corporation. So yea, he had made some enemies. But that's the life of a journalist.

    Remember Channon? Spider's Assistant. The first chapter kicks

    Spider Jerusalem is a certified douchebag. But like every celebrity douchebags, he is also a huge hit. Everybody loves his gloriously controversial column

    A Column which spider uses to tear a new one for some unlucky sap or a corporation. So yea, he had made some enemies. But that's the life of a journalist.

    Remember Channon? Spider's Assistant. The first chapter kicks off with her boyfriend's transformation to a pink cloud.

    Don't even ask. The future world is too damn crazy to make any sense of. Because this is the world where nothing is impossible and everything is wrong. A place where the human population is in billions, but humanity is scarce to find.

    The main story arc spanning three parts is one hell of a ride, a reminiscent of Guy Ritchie's movies like Snatch and it is filled with unique characters and absurd situation.

    For example, there is a genetically enhanced police dog who has a bone to pick with a spider.

    Anyhow, It all started with Channon fucking off to the nunnery.

    And then, out of nowhere Spider's wife's head gets stolen, a kid turns up in spider's editor's office claiming to be his son and couple of guys turn up at Spider's house to shoot him in the face.

    This is one of the best written graphic novels I have ever read. Waren Elis have done more than a spectacular job with this story. One of the standalone stories features a hard-hitting report on the modern cryogenics program and their odd clients is a fine example of extraordinary storytelling fueled solely by the strength of words.

    Overall, It can be vile at times, but it's so well-written that it would be a criminal offense not to read this!

  • James DeSantis

    Story: This volume actually gives us a lot of world building. Spider takes his assistant to her boyfriends download. Which basically means his body burns up and his soul is downloaded into the world of the internet or computer. Then we have a hit out on Spider! That's right. Someone didn't like what he wrote about them. Not only that but you have the dog police force after him. One individual dog is really pissed with Spider for having his balls cut off. Yep. You read that right.

    Art: Love it.

    Story: This volume actually gives us a lot of world building. Spider takes his assistant to her boyfriends download. Which basically means his body burns up and his soul is downloaded into the world of the internet or computer. Then we have a hit out on Spider! That's right. Someone didn't like what he wrote about them. Not only that but you have the dog police force after him. One individual dog is really pissed with Spider for having his balls cut off. Yep. You read that right.

    Art: Love it. Everything is so unique here. The designs of the characters, the ugly yet somehow beautiful city, oh and the facial emotions are funny as hell. This is one of the most unique looking comics in the best way.

    Enjoyment: Tons of great world building, getting to know Spider a bit more, and plenty of hilarious moments. I really loved the pacing here too. Splitting this book into giving us amazing world building and well made dialogue, this book is nearly flawless in the way it works. Politics, satire, funny as hell characters, this book has it all.

    What didn't work: Everything worked TBH.

    Overall, fantastic. This is shaping up to be one of my favorite series of all time.

  • Robert Beveridge

    Warren Ellis,

    (DC, 1998)

    The great thing about Transmetropolitan is that Warren Ellis seems to remember something that no satirist since Mark Twain has gotten right; while the heart of any satire is soaked in acid, the surface is supposed to be funny. It's not satire if it doesn't make us laugh at it (the humorless bastards who can't find anything funny in “A Modest Proposal” notwithstanding). And while Transmetropolitan mirrors most modern satire in that the

    Warren Ellis,

    (DC, 1998)

    The great thing about Transmetropolitan is that Warren Ellis seems to remember something that no satirist since Mark Twain has gotten right; while the heart of any satire is soaked in acid, the surface is supposed to be funny. It's not satire if it doesn't make us laugh at it (the humorless bastards who can't find anything funny in “A Modest Proposal” notwithstanding). And while Transmetropolitan mirrors most modern satire in that the heart is certainly soaked with acid, it is that rarest of commodities in that it also gets the surface bit right; it's damned funny, even as it wants to break our hearts. We're not supposed to like Spider Jerusalem all that much; he's addicted to everything, he treats his assistant like pure-D crap, he's misanthropic (though one thinks he takes entirely too much glee in his misanthropy to truly be a misanthrope). He's just plain not likable. And yet we can't help feeling for the guy, who just wants to make the world a slightly better place—even if his idea of how to go about that would involve tactical nuclear weapons. But really, haven't we all felt that way sometimes? (Hint: if you haven't, and you're considering purchasing this, you're in the wrong place. I'd suggest considering the equally brilliant, but far more optimistic, Bleach, or maybe Hikaru no Go.) Transmetropolitan is satire at its finest, all the more so because Warren Ellis has never met a line he doesn't want to cross. I mean, come on, Spider Jerusalem's wife's severed, cryogenically-frozen head is kidnapped and still comes back to terrorize him like a penanggalan? Beautiful! ****

  • Sesana

    Like the first collection, the second volume of Transmetropolitan is imaginative and acerbic, often funny, often bitter, sometimes brilliant. There's an amazing story tucked in the middle about a woman who's been awakened from cry-freeze into a world that could care less about her that's astonishingly moving, fully imagined, and simply one of the best things I can ever recall reading by Ellis. This volume would be worth reading for that one story alone, and it's absolutely the high point.

    The

    Like the first collection, the second volume of Transmetropolitan is imaginative and acerbic, often funny, often bitter, sometimes brilliant. There's an amazing story tucked in the middle about a woman who's been awakened from cry-freeze into a world that could care less about her that's astonishingly moving, fully imagined, and simply one of the best things I can ever recall reading by Ellis. This volume would be worth reading for that one story alone, and it's absolutely the high point.

    The rest is nothing to sneeze at. To me, the two most striking things about Transmet is how bitter it often is, and how deeply imaginative it is. It's not just that he writes about fascinating new technology, but that he also thinks through the societal implications. So, for example, he doesn't just write about the ability to move your consciousness into a cloud of technology, but about the impact it would have on the people left behind. It makes the world feel more full, more real, even as it's often intentionally very absurd.

    I tried to read Transmet years ago, and didn't like it at all. I suppose I wasn't yet mature enough to really "get" where Ellis was going with this, or to appreciate how well he was accomplishing what (I believe) he was aiming for. I'm glad that I decided to revisit the series.

  • Benoit Lelièvre

    I was afraid to be let down by volume two, but I was agreeably surprised to find a completely different angle on Spider Jerusalem and his own brand of social criticism. LUST FOR LIFE is more character oriented, but it's also going deeper into how the City is affecting him and driving him to great streaks of chaos and violence. LUST FOR LIFE is about humans going insane trying to find their rightful place in a world that they've driven off the rails and the embodiment of intellectual integrity

    I was afraid to be let down by volume two, but I was agreeably surprised to find a completely different angle on Spider Jerusalem and his own brand of social criticism. LUST FOR LIFE is more character oriented, but it's also going deeper into how the City is affecting him and driving him to great streaks of chaos and violence. LUST FOR LIFE is about humans going insane trying to find their rightful place in a world that they've driven off the rails and the embodiment of intellectual integrity that is forever condemned to report on their demise in order to make a living. Maybe less mind blowing, but more heartbreaking than the first volume.

  • Jan Philipzig

    This second volume delivers some of the most memorable short stories of the series (feat. nanotech consciousness downloads; human culture reservations; people awaking from cryogenic freezing to a hostile future: “Fuck off back to your freezers!”), as Ellis and Robertson are firing on all cylinders. It may not be perfect, but it’s the kind of wild ride that doesn’t have to be. The one thing that actually bothers me is the story’s underlying macho ethos: “How do you know I can’t kill you by

    This second volume delivers some of the most memorable short stories of the series (feat. nanotech consciousness downloads; human culture reservations; people awaking from cryogenic freezing to a hostile future: “Fuck off back to your freezers!”), as Ellis and Robertson are firing on all cylinders. It may not be perfect, but it’s the kind of wild ride that doesn’t have to be. The one thing that actually bothers me is the story’s underlying macho ethos: “How do you know I can’t kill you by staring hard?” Then again, this macho ethos probably allowed the series to succeed in an industry obsessed with superheroes.

  • Devann

    Definitely a very interesting series. This volume fills us in a little bit more Spider's past and some of it is soooo not good. He's a hard guy to like sometimes but I think that so far Ellis is doing a pretty good job of walking the line between edgy asshole and guy who is trying to do the 'right' thing [at least as he sees it]. I think mostly he just has problems visualizing future consequences for anyone who is not himself [and sometimes even for himself].

    Favorite panel:

    I mean on the one hand

    Definitely a very interesting series. This volume fills us in a little bit more Spider's past and some of it is soooo not good. He's a hard guy to like sometimes but I think that so far Ellis is doing a pretty good job of walking the line between edgy asshole and guy who is trying to do the 'right' thing [at least as he sees it]. I think mostly he just has problems visualizing future consequences for anyone who is not himself [and sometimes even for himself].

    Favorite panel:

    I mean on the one hand poor Spider but on the other hand some dudes just cannot take no for an answer and you never know which is which so like ... #relatable

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