The Web Comics I’m Reading and You Should Too: The Outrunners

In the not-so-distant future gasoline is at a premium, and the government has restricted its usage to law enforcement and shipping companies. The public is forced to use rail transportation or solar-powered vehicles. But the outlaws of this world fly in the face of these restrictions choosing to use gas-guzzling motorcycles as their means of transport. In the dystopian future of The Outrunners, biker gangs run the underworld of megacities, stealing goods and fighting amongst themselves for dominance and survival.

This web comic, which is written by Jonathan Gelatt and illustrated by Andrew Krahnke, pays homage to some of the great dystopian sci-fi stories that came out during the 1980’s like Mad Max or Akira. The biker gangs operating against the backdrop of a rundown megacity is actually very reminiscent of the latter. Krahnke’s artwork is great and really captures the gritty feel of the setting. Gelatt also does a wonderful job with the dialogue, keeping it highly stylized and loaded with slang that is both unfamiliar but easy to understand.

This is a re-imagining of the classic dystopian outlaw story, very similar in feel to older narratives but also updated with more recent concerns like the onset of global warming, the potential for future energy crises due to lack of gasoline, and even some discussion about space colonization and where humanity’s future lies. Those of you looking for a fun, action-packed narrative set in the future should definitely check this out. I’m only about halfway through everything that’s been released so far, but I’m excited to read more and eager to catch up.

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