Warren Ellis’ Transmetropolitan, Vol 8: Dirge continues the story of Spider’s attempt to take down the Smiler, and the Smiler’s attempt to thwart Spider at every turn and probably kill him.
Because this book was written 16 years ago but is still depressingly relevant to everything about modern life, the big incident chronicled in this volume is something called a ruinstorm, a gigantic, destructive bomb of wind and water that apparently used to be much more common before they figured out how to stabilize the climate and weather a little. The Smiler uses this ruinstorm as cover to basically get all the press and cops off the streets so he can hack into newspaper archives and delete a bunch of stuff. Spider, of course, is having none of this and is more determined than ever, but he is suddenly on a deadline—he gets diagnosed with a degenerative brain disease and has one year, maybe two, until he loses all his cognitive faculties.
Most of this book serves largely to set the scene for the big showdown against the Smiler that’s coming later, but that doesn’t detract from the enjoyment of this volume.