BAYLANS: reviewed in Fly Magazine (Issue No. 17, October 2000)
By P.G.S. Mallari

Circa 2004. The Philippines was again gripped by the horror of the martial rule. Amidst the mayhem, hacker-genius Jonas Arcanghel deciphered the code of a copperplate artifact prophesying the return of an ancient Malayan mystical society. Pursued by government hit squads, Jonas with his elite hacker group called the Baylans wage war against a berserk regime.

Baylan undoubtedly reflects the eclectic psyche of the 21st Century juvenile: the Net, rave culture, occultism, etc. What makes it a worthwhile read is that there is an ample sense of reality. The plot is quite believable unlike the usual “caped crusader” stuff that most comic books are made of. Writer Jason Banico made a commendable effort of seamlessly weaving the seemingly disparate components of technology, mysticism and politics. The illustration, though displaying a good sense of panel break down appears a little too dark, most probably the result of reducing the comic book to half a legal sheet size. The visual and narrative of the story maintained a gritty feel without losing the element of fun.

Sold for a 100 bucks at all leading comic and book stores.