Fly 002
June-July 1998

Flyleaf (Comics)
comic: BATCH 72
writer: Budjette Tan
penciller: Arnold Arre
publisher: Alamat Comics
reviewer: Lionel Zivan S. Vandellon /

The setting is the Philippines in some equidistant future where most all of the youth have super powers. There's a ragtag barkada of U.P. undergrad students who, aside from being friends (and possessing mutant abilities that every kid would love), all play in a band named Batch 72. They're finally able to book a gig at the ultrachic Seventh Heaven club, unfortunately, some of the group fall foul of the Alpha Arakno fraternity bullies. Yet between attending class, getting arrested and fighting off the bullies, the band still find time to write poetry, hang out at Mrs. Donut and generally be fun-filled teenagers to the max.

This comic's been a long time coming. But it's been worth the wait. Creators Tan and Arre do a mighty fine job with their crispy dialogue, numerous sight gags (and lotsa details, man) plus clean, cartoony lines. It's a joy merely flipping through the book and looking at the characters' facial expressions. Imagine combining Gimik, Ranma and Gen 13 and you kinda get the idea. A wacky, humorous read. The only minus points are the lack of characterization (there are too many characters, and it's hard telling one from the other) and the lack of color. But then with the prices of printing skyrocketing these days, I can't blame them for taking the 'zine route and making the comic's size half a legal sheet and black and white. And who the hell cares?!! As long as the book is worth it, right? At 30 bucks, you can't go wrong with Batch 72. So what are you waiting for?