The Surrogates: Vol 1
The Surrogates: Vol 2: Flesh & Bone
The Surrogates Operator’s Manual: Vol 1 & 2 (Hardcover)
Written by Robert Venditti
Art by Brett Weldele
Top Shelf Productions
The Surrogates caught me by surprise when it came out a few years ago. Here was a book with a unique premise, which appealed to the Sci-Fi fan in me, as well as the crime drama/mystery fan. The story was fairly unique to me: In the future most people will not leave their houses at all, they do all their business and interactions through the use of realistic looking robots called Surrogates. These surrogates have changed all aspects of society: cops don’t have to worry about being killed in the line of duty; gender roles are easily switched by using a surrogate opposite of the users actual gender; and body image is no longer a problem, since your surrogate can be as good looking as you want it to be. All of this changes when someone begins to go around destroying other people’s surrogates. What follows is an examination of how we interact with each other in an online world, the role of religion verses technology, and really just a well crafted mystery.
The original Surrogates mini-series, by Robert Venditti is an interesting piece of work. It’s one of the most thought provoking series that I have read over the last few years. The world we live in today is one where people can go years without actually meeting people they interact with every day. You can keep up with complete strangers via any number of message boards, Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, or a million other social networks. You can raid a dungeon in World of Warcraft with someone who could be half a world away, or they could be your next door neighbor, and you wouldn’t be able to tell the difference. The Surrogates takes the concept of this isolation that many people live their lives in today, and asks what would happen if no one had to leave their house if they didn’t want to. The best thing it does though, is take this interesting concept, and wraps it up in an also interesting murder mystery.
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