Belarius's Reviews > Dominion

Dominion by Masamune Shirow
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Feb 01, 08

bookshelves: graphic-novels, speculative-fiction, fiction-finished, reviewed
Recommended for: Tank Fetishists
Read in February, 2000

Masamune Shirow was once of the heavyweights of the American market of import comics, a status he earned almost exclusively with his remarkable opus Ghost In The Shell. What most people forget is that Shirow authored a variety of other pieces varying wildly both in quality and in seriousness. Dominion: Tank Police is almost certainly the least serious thing Shirow's ever published, and also one of the least interesting. It certainly isn't bad, but it's only shot at being remembered is for its campiness.

Dominion: Tank Police tells the story of a hyper-violent police unit who drive tanks, causing massive amounts of property damage as they battle a ragtag gang of criminals. The logic, physics, and overall tone is one of slapstick (a sort of Looney Toons with guns and tits) that actually reminds me more of the 80s cartoon C.O.P.S. than anything else.

In his defense, Shirow doesn't take himself seriously at all, and this is some of his earliest and roughest work. The stakes aren't very high, so when Shirow aims low he still hits most of the time. Expect bawdy humor, visual gags, and gleeful rampage - someone looking for these probably won't be disappointed. Also, as silly (and stupid) as Tank Police can get, Shirow's forward-thinking vision is at work even in this early volume, hinting at his more direction musings about artificial life as explored in Appleseed and Ghost In The Shell. But these considerations are generally drowned out by the sound of cannon shells.
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