Having traversed more destroyed and decaying buildings and fought more hostile bots, ITTO and the traffic robot, Speedy, finally arrive at the TourTec factory; however, nothing is as they expected.
The factory is falling apart, and there are no humans. Though ITTO has accomplished its task by following its recall instructions, there is nothing for it here. Despair almost overtakes it when Speedy detects movement. To their surprise, a replica of ITTO – but painted with camouflage – appears. Startled at first, the new bot is no threat and insists they follow it. It takes them to a fortified compound where – to ITTO’s surprise – there are not only other bots, but a human!
A new upgrade allows ITTO to speak to JP, the human who installed its upgrades. JP assures ITTO it is safe and among friends. Curious, ITTO asks what happened to all of the humans, and JP tells him the story of a third American Civil War, where the losing side unleashed a bioweapon. Initially, a few humans survived, but, over time, JP lost contact with them. In an attempt to find other humans, JP has been sending out reconnaissance bots, but none have ever returned. What’s worse, many of the working bots received faulty upgrades during the initial crisis, causing aggression and cannibalizing other bots. This forced JP and his robots to protect themselves. But the real question is: Have ITTO and Speedy found a safe haven, or did they jump from the fire into the frying pan?
This issue nicely lays out what happened prior to ITTO waking up. It could have been a little more succinct, but I enjoyed the concept of using blueprint-like images to convey the past events instead of the usual sepia-toned coloring. There is also a nice sleight of hand here to obscure a certain truth. It’s obvious once you take a moment, but I don’t want to ruin it for you. There’s a lot more exposition in this issue compared to the others which makes the story as a whole feel imbalanced. I would have preferred breaking up the exposition in this issue a bit more, as the previous issues had such strong visual storytelling. Once again, the action sequences are done well and keep the energy going.
I can’t wait to see what‘s next for ITTO.
Creative Team: Phil Chapman (writer/artist)
Publisher: Blue Fox Comics
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