Unknown Soldier #21: A Brief History Lesson of the AK47
If you are not reading this comic, kick yourself. Then go get this issue, #21. Sure, Unknown Soldier is sadly being canceled at #25 but that is no reason not to pick up this issue, even if it is this issue alone that you ever buy.
Grab this issue for the blending of the history of the AK-47 and some low points from the story of Eastern Africa from the past 35 years.
As the writer, Joshua Dysart has created some of his best stories with Unknown Soldier. He took a character that was used in old WWII stories (he first appeared in a Sergeant Rock comic) and modernized him into a tragic and violent character in Uganda’s recent troubles. This stand alone story doesn’t really feature the character of the Unknown Soldier, but instead focuses on the most ubiquitous weapon of war for the past 60 years, the AK-47, placing it in the troubles of Ethiopia, Sudan and Uganda.
Anyone who has ever traveled out their comfort zone into the developing world has seen these guns. I saw bank guards holding them in every bank I went to in Africa. Border guards held them. Police had them. The military had them; I once rode in the back of a small Subaru truck with two soldiers who kept their fingers on the triggers of their AK-47s as they watched over a prisoner accused of being a rebel–the same type of rebels that you can find in Dysart’s Unknown Soldier.
If you pick up this issue and it interests you, you can easily find the earlier stories in trade paperback. The first two are out already, and the third will be out in November.
Finally, I should mention that this issue is a fill-in by the veteran artist Rick Veitch.
Bottom Line: $2.99/$2.99