Bryan Hill and Rhoald Marcellius, along with Glitch, give us a taste of what an augmented and virtual reality will look like in the near future in their latest comic Bonehead. Bonehead follows an independent man by the name of 56 as he uses a neuro-linked system that enhance his parkour abilities while seeking a physical thrill out of life. 56 does not remember his past but possess a strange power that might be able to stop several parkour gangs from going to war with one another and tear apart the city where he lives.
Right from the start 56 is following the same path as Xander Cage has followed living a life of performing high risk stunts for the pleasure of it. Rather than stealing cars and jumping off bridges for his stunts, 56 is going down a futuristic route as he is attempting to find and steal a drone. He does this by leaping off drones, buildings, and signs with the help of his neuro-linked device. This sets the tone of the comic as we are introduced to the environment, technology, the athleticism, and the attitude of people living within this society. Furthermore, the comic provides a nice balance as 56 has to deal with Gladiators, who act like police in this world, particularly Gladiator 32. 56 deals with Gladiator 32 who escapes from him but is ultimately found later. This makes 56 a normal character as he has his limitations, which brings an element of realness to his character. Finally, the comic hints at showing the real power that 56 has, as he decides to save Pumpkin Juice from being attacked by the Digitalsaurus gang. During this fight, he easily defeats several of them, while Pumpkin Juice comments saying that “he moves like Black Death.” This is implying that 56 has a massive amount of power that has yet to be released that can be used to accomplish his own goals and several other ones that are more honorable.
The comic fails to provide any information on the technology of the neuro-link system that is being used by 56 or any of the gangs. Rather it just presents it and moves the story along on that point. This is odd considering that it is an important component to how the Bonehead gangs function and fight with one another. Furthermore, the comic fails to explain who the Gladiators are and their role in society and the technology they have. This raises the question of how powerful the Gladiators are as they have easily found 56, yet are struggling to address the threat of the parkour gangs.
Bonehead is an interesting comic. It gives a glimpse of what augmented and virtual reality will look like in the future and how they interact with the real world. Issue 1 begins to set the stage for 56. He is attempting to live the life he wants despite not knowing the true power he has, which can be used to save the city he is in from an imminent gang war. Going into 2018 Bonehead looks to be a promising and interesting comic that seems to satisfy science fiction and action fans.