Ultimately Insane Warrior!"
Sometime last year, Roger
discovered a short series of comics based on (and written by) the
wrestler Ultimate Warrior on eBay. Recognizing them for the comedy gems
that they are, he purchased them, and loaned them out to me so I could
write a Longbox column about them. (He already spotlighted the
Warrior Christmas Special at the end of
Recently, I decided to remove these comics from the purgatory that is my
"to be read eventually" pile (in which there are hundreds of books).
After several days of sobbing, tear-filled regret and a near-biblical
gnashing of teeth, my brain had recovered enough to finally talk about
You've never known what
regret truly is until you've read these Warrior comics.
First off, I will give you
this warning about these comics, should you ever happen across copies of
them (perhaps in an archaeological dig, or lining the bottom of a
birdcage somewhere). Though there are words printed within (quite a lot
of words actually, as the Ultimate Warrior, or simply "Warrior" as he
now prefers to be called, is quite a wordy bitch), I would strongly
advise against actually reading any of them. Reading the words in
a "Warrior" comic affects you not unlike an unspeakable horror from an
H.P. Lovecraft tale, twisting your brain around and driving you insane
as you struggle to comprehend that which you've just seen. Of course, if
you're familiar with the Warrior, you knew that already. If you aren't,
look him up on YouTube and you will soon discover that he is incapable
of speaking in anything other than disjointed random non sequiturs.
There was far more text in these books than I expected from a former
professional wrestler; in fact, some pages were dominated by text with
very little else on them. Ironically though, it seemed that the more
text was on a page, the less was being said. I would read and reread
entire narrative boxes with no comprehension whatsoever of what I'd just
read, until it finally dawned on me that absolutely nothing was
just said. Because of that, these books force you to take a "look at da
purdy pictures" approach to reading them, and since the artwork is
provided by an abysmally bad Rob Liefeld copycat, they don't exactly
deliver anything in that department either.
One thing you need to (and I use this term very loosely)
"understand" before going into these books is the concept of "Destrucity",
which Roger defined in his previous coverage of the Christmas issue, but
I think it needs to be mentioned again:
tri-fold in its definition, therefore meaning... 1. The name of
the Galaxy in WARRIOR wherein the "Terrain of Testament" lies. 2.
The Living of one's life in the Way of a Warrior according to a
Warrior's 8 Disciplines. Those are as follows: 1) Physical, 2) Beliefs,
3) Moment of Mastery, 4) Attitude, 5) Commitment, 6) Association, 7)
Integrity, 8) Wisdom. 3. The creating of a truce between one's
Destiny and one's Reality. Promising to stay true to what one is
destined to be, yet
accepting what is the now... one's reality."
If that didn't make sense,
good. That means you're still sane. (If you found yourself nodding along
going "Yeah, yeah, that totally makes sense to me!", then I urge you to
READ NO FURTHER. In fact, it may already be too late to preserve
your mind.) So now that you too have no idea what "Destrucity" is, I
will summarize the books as best I can, given that I had no fucking clue
what the hell was going on during any single point in what passes for
Our story begins with the Ultimate Warrior in his gay purple pajamas
floating in a green cosmic cloud, with way too much narration
telling us that he has used the power of dreams to travel beyond the
"painful world of lost souls" to a world where "a being's only weapons
are the cold, hard steel of his self-belief and the essence of his
‘self'; the animal in us all."
The god of the Oompa
Loompas lays dormant, waiting for the
distant day his loyal worshippers will finally call for his
Sound like a bunch of
pseudo-philosophical bullshit to you? I assure you, you're not alone.
Then, what can only be described as "something" happens, where the
Warrior's metaphysical dream self is attacked by these little red and
blue spirits that are no doubt a metaphysical representation of
something else, but mercifully he decides to spare us his thoughts
on that and just shows us random guys flying in out of nowhere and
tearing off most of his clothes.
So, I hear that Warrior's
really homophobic. After reading these
comics, I'm going to bet that he's not very familiar with irony.
Then, as randomly as
anything happens in these issues, we see something (could it be a
meteorite, perhaps?) crash onto the surface of a harsh and unforgiving
alien world. Again, accompanied by far too much narration rambling on
about "destiny's labor" and "a higher self's birthright".
Just think of these rock
chunks as "explosive diarrhea"
and you'll have an idea what's in store for you.
Imagine the reader's
"surprise" when they discover that it wasn't a meteorite at all that
crashed onto the planet, but it was in fact the Warrior himself!
Atmospheric reentry is but child's play to one as mighty as the Warrior!
Familiarize yourself with
this position, as you'll probably
find yourself in it by the time you've finished these comics.
Warrior wonders what
happened to him and attempts to get up, but immediately collapses "into
the twilight of no thought at all" after the stress of his crash
landing. Seasons then pass while the Warrior just lays there
unconscious, so we can truly appreciate the hardships he's been through.
But, as he points out, the "strength of one's beliefs cannot be subject
to the cruelties brought on by the change of seasons". Um, Warrior?
What beliefs? You were floating around in dreamland, you were
attacked by space monsters, and you crash landed on a planet. What does
this have to do with your beliefs?
In Destrucity, there are
only three seasons: Wet, Snow, and Dry.
The Warrior finally
awakens and declares that it's "time to get foked". No,
you haven't just heard Warrior's watered-down version of cursing, he has
instead made up a new word that means "focused". Because saying "foked"
instead of "focused" sounds more INTENSE and X-TREME,
which is what comics were all about back in 1996, and that's why the 90s
were almost certainly the worst decade in the history of comics.
Back in 1996, 13-year old
kids everywhere thought this was the shit.
After making sure he's
good and foked, Warrior starts running across the "Terrain of
Testament", which he has to explain in the preface to issue 2, because
god knows he never bothers to explain it in the story itself. It seems
that this "Terrain of Testament" is the proving ground where Warrior
will become the very first, well, Warrior, so that he may define
the concept of what a Warrior is, so that others may then follow his
guiding example and become warriors themselves. For no warriors may
exist before him. Yeah, it's not like he has an over-inflated ego or
Where on earth has
Warrior's other leg gone?
Perhaps it's foked its way right up into his "sit-down parts".
He continues to run, his
internal monologue rambling on and on about physical perfection,
purpose, why he can't remember anything, and other stuff no one cares
about, until he finally reaches the edge of a lake, where he stops and
puts his hand in the water. At this point, Warrior is confronted by what
appears to be the floating head of Zeus, who rambles on and on nearly as
much as Warrior himself does about things like Destrucity and "truth of
"I could turn into a swan
and fuck you right now, dude, you don't even know."
"Zeus" then tells Warrior
that he must stay true to the eight disciplines of Destrucity, and that
his adversary will be of "eight minds, eight bodies, and just as many
souls" (why didn't he just say "eight souls"?), and each of these
adversaries is capable of taking "all you have ever known, and all you
have ever been". At this point, like so many anime series, video games,
and anime series based on video games have done before, you might be
expecting the story to go in the direction of Warrior having to fight
eight guys, "mini-bosses" if you will, to learn the eight disciplines of
Destrucity. And in that assumption, you'd be completely wrong. Zeus
apparently doesn't know what the fuck he's talking about, because these
"eight adversaries" never make so much as an appearance in this book.
Unless of course, Zeus was talking about the handful of nameless,
faceless, tall jawas (who never number more than six) that suddenly
materialize behind our hero.
"Dude, it's time to
totally foke that guy!"
Fortunately for Warrior,
he's a "Mary Sue" character who can't possibly fail at anything, and he
immediately detects the mysterious mystical presence "foked" on him from
behind, and decides to dive into the lake before him so that he has time
to get "foked" on his own. It also allows for a lengthy and dramatic
underwater internal monologue, at the end of which Warrior seems to
forget he's underwater and blurts out a bit of dialogue.
As his lungs fill with
Poseidon's cool embrace, Warrior
realizes that talking underwater is kinda stupid.
With a battle cry of "The
student is ready...and you are NOT!" Warrior bursts out of the water and
pummels the shit out of the jawas. During the fight, Warrior muses
internally that "a warrior placed within battle becomes... forcefully
fierce... concrete in connection... precision in decision... devastating
in destruction". Indeed, Warrior has already shown a mastery of the
Destrucity disciplines known as Rhyme and Alliteration.
It was the worst Halloween
of Warrior's life.
After a time, the jawas
seem to tire of Warrior's incessant rambling monologue as much as the
reader, because they teleport away in the style of a Power Rangers
villain and are never seen again.
Not even George Lucas
would have his creatures involved in
something this crappy, so he teleported them the hell out of
A few jawa corpses are
left behind however, and Warrior dips his hands in the blood, which
transforms into the goofy red ribbons that will forever trail behind him
from this point on. It also provides him with his face paint, and
somehow changes his boots from purple to gold.
After I read the comics, I
blacked out for a while,
and when I came to my hands looked kind of like this.
Then we cut to "a
synchronous moment... held close... yet so far away", where we find out
that the "real-world" Warrior is in a hospital bed, apparently in a
coma. My god... so all this stuff is going on in his head, as he fights
for his life! Holy shit! That's so deep! Warrior really hit the
ball out of the park with the emotional depth and drama of this one!
Surely he won an Eisner Award for this?
In this heartwarming
scene, the ditzy blonde
sobs over the idiot who treats her like shit.
Warrior's woman has really
big breasts of course, and she is there sobbing over his prone,
unconscious form, completely unaware of the epic struggle currently
going on within his head. She says she doesn't even want to imagine a
life without him in between tears. Then we cut to some random, sinister
looking dude holding what appears to be a planet in the palm of his
hand. He looks over at the reader and says "Believe this."
Believe what? Who are you?
What's going on? I'm so confused! Aaargghhhh!
Could this be the sinister
villain manipulating everything behind the scenes? What does he mean by
"believe this"? Apparently, Warrior didn't know the answers to these
questions either, because you never see this man again. He just shows up
out of the blue in one panel, says something meaningless, and disappears
just as quickly. As we will soon see is typical of these books, events
that occur in one issue have little to no bearing on the next. It seems
that Warrior is vaguely trying to tell a continuing story, but
the nature of his insanity usually prevents him from maintaining a
single train of thought for longer than one issue.
"Join Warrior University,
where you can take classes such as
Weight Lifting 101, Weight Lifting 102 and uhhhh Weight Lifting 101".
To his credit, the second
issue actually does manage to continue the whole "Warrior in a
coma" plot thread, as it opens showing some students at "Warrior
University" talking about how sad they are that the big man is in a
Is that a giant mockup of
the Warrior back there, or is that Frylock?
Because there hasn't been
enough insanity yet this issue, we then cut to a mysterious cosmic
energy flying through space, "an energy bound by purpose... directed by
an insatiable desire... to make pointless retribution... of something
that happened long ago." Whatever the fuck that means. If you have no
expectations of ever finding out, well... you're catching on quick!
Every time the Hale-Bopp
comet comes around, the
Heaven's Gate cult produces another issue of "Warrior".
We then cut back to the
gym, where two guys are about to get into a fight over, well, we have no
idea. But the little guy pushes the big guy, and then the big guy
imagines that because the little guy touched his special "limited
edition Ab-Flex" shirt, he must be trying to steal it. These two
meatheads are never seen again, and the outcome of the fight is unknown,
but this scene is apparently supposed to illustrate that without the
Warrior's guidance and wisdom, his gym (sorry, university) is
falling into complete chaos.
You expect me to believe
this is the Warrior's gym
when that weight bar back there has NO weight on it?
Back to the cosmic energy,
we see it fly around through the city for a while, before it homes in on
the hospital where Warrior is staying. It flies through his window, and
suddenly, Warrior jerks awake with an exclamation of "F-F-U-U-C".
Apparently Warrior still wasn't comfortable with cursing in his comic at
this point (a limitation completely cast aside by issue 3), so he leaves
us to wonder what the final, mystery letter might be.
Warrior wakes up only to
realize with disappointment
that he's trapped in the nightmare that is this comic book.
This apparently has no
effect on the insanity taking hold of his mind however, as we cut to
Warrior, still in the galaxy of Destrucity, on the Terrain of Testament,
where he apparently still will not curse as he wonders what is going on
Is he actually spelling it
out loud? Cuz that's just so badass.
A giant tornado appears
before Warrior and disappears just as quickly, and then he becomes aware
that his ribbons, or "Belief Banners", formed from the blood of his
enemies are alive and are talking to him (another concept that Warrior
had to explain in the issue's introductory text, since the story itself
does a piss-poor job of explaining it).
"Clothes!? Who DARES
bedeck my body with clothing of any kind!?"
He freaks out and yells at
the ribbons to get off of him, but quickly forgets about them as
Battlecat breaks out of a strange crystal building that spontaneously
appeared before him and charges at him! This is apparently supposed to
be symbolic of "the beast within", again illustrating that Warrior is no
mere hack, but rather a storyteller capable of amazing depth and
He-Man's mount attempts to
After defeating the cat by
ripping its jaws apart, a silver-coated version of Warrior emerges from
the crystal building and attacks! This is supposed to represent the
mirror image of the self! His Belief Banners provide helpful commentary
during the fight, such as "packaged to unload, Warrior!" and "let's
asphalt this asshole!" Okay, so apparently he will curse in this
book, he just doesn't want to drop the F-bomb.
Uh oh! You fightin' Colossus now, bitch!
He finally defeats his
mirror image self by punching it a lot, and then a small green child
sprouts (who coincidentally looks like Sprout, the Green Giant's plucky
child companion) from the mirror image's back! The Mirror Self
apparently deployed his back-child in an effort to convince the Warrior
to show compassion, but Warrior sees through this ploy and says one must
not mistake weakness for compassion, before punching the shit out of the
child and causing him to shatter into a million pieces (like a mirror!)
I'm just glad they decided
not to show Sprout's "little sprout".
Warrior then shouts to the
heavens that he will "take back all that has been taken!", though we
never actually learn what in the hell he's referring to. He poses around
a lot for the final few pages, before his "real world self" appears to
him on a shard of broken mirror and tells him his "presence is
Oh good, does that mean
you're recalling all the issues of the comic?