First up, we have “Hell’s Angel,” featuring “Daring World War I Ace ‘Wilks’ Wilkinson.” I was already fairly familiar with the story, as the original prose version not only appears in The Condimental Op, but also as a story-within-a-story in Bergen’s latest novel, Depth Charging Ice Planet Goth. I can’t blame him for reusing it, as it’s a lot of fun. Our hero, Wilks, accidentally shoots down Britannia, the symbol/patron goddess of Great Britain, and the two of them then attempt to escape a bumbling German officer who’s more than a little inspired by Col. Klink of Hogan’s Heroes. The artwork is in black and white, which suits the subject matter well, and the story has a great fantasy/adventure feel to it. Sandwiching the story are two spoof WWI recruitment posters that add to the overall flavor, as well.
Then, we move on to “Hock, Flock, and Two Choking Carols,” a Roy and Suzie adventure. If you read my reviews of Bergen’s work, you know that I’m a big fan of the Roy and Suzie characters. In fact, there’s a quote from me on the cover of Tales to Admonish #2 that says exactly that. And, even better, this Roy and Suzie story’s one I hadn’t read before. This one sees the odd couple investigating a bit of suspected alien technology. As usual, they bicker and trade witty barbs in rapid fire while trying to decide what to do about the situation at hand. It doesn’t disappoint.
Then, there’s a brief essay called “The Lamest Comic Book Villain Ever,” which tells the origin of “Bulletgirl,” the inspiration for Bergen’s own heroine Bullet Gal, and tells of one of her less-than-stellar adventures.
If you like adventure, fantasy, sci-fi, parody, and classic comics, you’ll find a lot to like in Tales to Admonish. This is a fun issue with some laughs, some excitement, and some great stories.