"Hardest of the Hard" Part 1
Buckaroo Banzai: Hardest of the Hard #1 (Moonstone)
Story: Mac Rauch
Pencils: Shawn Van Briesen
Inks: Mark Stegbauer
David Easterly (A), J. Anthony Kosar
A young woman is slowly transformed
into a fighting animal and crosses paths with Buckaroo Banzai.
In New York City, a beautiful and tough
young woman known as Lady G. is down on her luck and falls in
with an operation that is transforming fighters into half-animal
soldiers for the Deathheads of the World Crime League. Over the
course of months, this woman becomes a partially cat-like being.
After her heart is replaced with that of a
baboon, she decides to escape. She manages to make it away from
the garbage barge that is the hidden headquarters of the
operation, into the polluted river. Exhausted and almost
drowned, she is eventually pulled out by a group of Buckaroo's
people who are trying to locate the WCL operation.
Back at the Institute, Buckaroo promises to
use his medical skills to help her become human again. In turn,
she tells him about the garbage barge and a strike is planned.
Reno goes undercover as someone who is
interested in joining and being augmented. He gets a meeting
with the head doctor, Dr. Longfeller, on the barge and, as the
strike begins outside, Reno jumps Longfeller. But Longfeller's
semi-human bodyguard grabs Reno and he is captured.
CONTINUED IN BUCKAROO BANZAI: HARDEST
OF THE HARD #2.
The story opens in the Big Apple. The Big Apple is
the nickname of New York City, popularized by sports writer
John J. Fitz Gerald in the New York Morning Telegraph
in the 1920s.
On page 2, panel 1, we see the logos of both
LG Corp. and
Toys "Я" Us
on the New York City street.
On page 13, Pecos remarks on the sky-high coliform and toxin
count in the section of the river she, Reno, and Perfect
Tommy are on. Coliform is a bacteria found in the feces of
warm-blooded animals and is therefore used as an indicator
of fecal pollution in the environment.
On page 15, panel 1, it appears there may be weapons
placements on the roofs of the buildings of the Banzai
Institute in New Jersey.
On page 15, Buckaroo seems to suggest that Dr. Harry
Longfeller is actually Hanoi Xan (although it turns out in
"Hardest of the Hard" Part 2 that
Dr. Longfeller is just an android).
Also on page 15, we learn that Lady Gillette's actual name
is Grace and she is from Monmouth, Illinois. Buckaroo
remarks that Monmouth was the birthplace of Wyatt Earp. Earp
was a well-known lawman in a number of frontier towns of the
American Old West of the 1870s and '80sa and he was, if
fact, born in Monmouth.
When Reno's undercover ruse is discovered by Dr. Longfeller
on the last page of the issue, the villain refers to him as
"the Reno Kid." As far as I know, Reno has never used that
name; possibly Longfeller is not as up on his Cavaliers as
he should be and has mixed up the names of Reno and the
Back to Buckaroo Banzai