GRAPHIC NOVEL
WE3

Author: Grant Morrison
Artist: Frank Quietly
Titan Books
RRP 7.99
ISBN 1 84576 159 6
Available 26 August 2005


Deep inside a top-secret US Air Force research facility, a revolution in cybernetics is taking shape. Using ordinary domestic animals for their test subjects, scientists have created a new class of cyborg - flesh-and-metal creatures designed to rule the battlefields of tomorrow. The projects crowning achievement is a trio of prototypes code-named WE3. With their nervous systems enhanced and supplemented by cutting-edge military hardware, WE3 are the ultimate smart weapons - programmable yet autonomous, loyal yet utterly ruthless...

WE3 is a touching and rather depressing tale about three innocent animals that have been turned into cyborg killing machines. Now that their testing is almost complete, they will soon be dismantled. They manage to escape and set off into the world alone. With memories of home, the canine prototype attempts to make his way home, the cat still has it's independence and seems to hate everything, and the rabbit, as you can probably imagine, doesn't actually do very much.

I'm going to be a bit of a nit-picker here and ask why domestic animals were used. Would it not have been more efficient to have reared the test subjects from a very young age? And why is it, when their owners had printed "missing" posters, that they didn't bother to visit the rescue centres - where I'm assuming the research facility picked up its test subjects. If they didn't, and instead wandered the streets looking for likely animals to use, then this makes even less sense.

But enough of my anal ramblings. Ignore this rather large sticking point and enjoy WE3 for its intelligent script and fantastic art work.

Nick Smithson

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