Title: The Scumbag #1
Words: Rick Remender
Art: Lewis Larosa
Colors: Moreno Dinisio
Published: October 21, 2020
Publisher’s Summary: “Cole Turner has studied conspiracy theories all his life, but he isn’t prepared for what happens when he discovers “JAZZ APPLE ARMAGEDDON,” Part One. The fate of the world rests in the hands of the worst person on it! NEW ONGOING SERIES from the writer of DEADLY CLASS! RICK REMENDER launches an all-new comedy espionage series, THE SCUMBAG—the story of Ernie Ray Clementine, a profane, illiterate, drug-addicted biker with a fifth-grade education. He’s the only thing standing between us and total Armageddon because this dummy accidentally received a power-imbuing serum, making him the world’s most powerful super spy. This new ongoing series will feature a murderers’ row of all-star artistic talent rotating each issue. The first issue showcases the stunning work of LEWIS LaROSA, with subsequent chapters and covers by brilliant talents such as ANDREW ROBINSON, ERIC POWELL, TULA LOTAY, WES CRAIG, ROLAND BOSCHI, SIMONE DI MEO, MARGUERITE SAUVAGE, DUNCAN FEGREDO, YANICK PAQUETTE, MIKE McKONE, DAVE JOHNSON, MORENO DINISIO, and many more!”
The Scumbag in question is one Ernie Ray Clementine, the worst possible example of a superhero. He is also likely the to be worst possible example of a functional human being, in fact, but he is all that humanity has left to rely on because in a few minutes all hell is going to break loose. The drawback that he doesn’t actually care about anyone other than himself is only one of the worrisome characteristics he carries with him like a garbage bag full of soiled clothes (aka his luggage).
Rick Remender’s signature dark take on the human condition is well represented with The Scumbag. The story begins with a scene of indulgence, vice and depravity, and that’s the cheerful part. Then that particular world view comes into focus with the dregs of society front and center. The anti-hero approach could not have been made any plainer with a title such as this, but even so, Ernie Ray plumbs new depths in human failure. That’s what makes him interesting, Remender knows it, and fans of his work will find exactly what they are looking for.
The Bottom Line
The Scumbag shows how even the dregs of humanity have a chance to be heroes even if they hate people. Gross and profane and exactly what the title suggests.