To begin, if you haven’t heard of Axe Cop, let me tell you a little bit about it. Axe Cop is written and illustrated by Malachai and Ethan Nicolle, who are brothers as hinted by their similar last names. Currently, Ethan is 31 and Malachai is 8. As a result, Axe Cop is bonkers, but don’t take my word for it; read it yourself. This is the part of the review where I am tempted to explain who Axe Cop’s teammates are or how he stops the bad guys; but, instead, I will just explain that one of his new allies is named Junior Cobbb. No, that’s not a typo. Junior Cobbb is a talking gorilla with a bowtie, robotic-gun fists, and a tail that shoots whatever he wants out of it. Everybody involved knows that gorillas don’t have tails, but Junior Cobbb is from Planet Weird Gorilla, so that’s all explained. If this book doesn’t interest you now, then we can’t be friends anymore.
Now, I feel that I must try to mention the sorts of things I normally would review in a comic. So, let’s talk about the art. Ethan’s art is pretty much exactly what this book needs. He takes everything seriously enough to help build the world, but it is clear that he thinks this is as funny as the rest of us should. As you can see, Axe Cop looks a bit like Burt Reynolds, but with more axe. He is frequently drawn as the traditional tough guy superhero, despite the sheer madness of what he is doing. Every once in a while, Ethan shows us just how silly Axe Cop is. The real genius on display here is wrangling Malachai’s stories to form a cohesive story, without diluting the awesome.
So, what does Malachai do? He plays with his brother. The Nicolles get together every so often, and they play Axe Cop. Ethan lets Malachai steer the game, and then turns the game into a story. So some of the structure is new, but the plot, characters, and tone are the pure, distilled creativity of a funny little kid. I cannot tell you how lucky we are to have this in the world.
Six Fire-Breathing, Flying Tyrannosaurus Rexes with Machine-Gun Arms out of Five.