Thursday, 9 February 2012

CONCRETE: STRANGE ARMOR

Concrete: Strange Armor #1, December 1997.
Artwork by Paul Chadwick.

"Strange Armor retells Concrete's origin and early struggles as a rocky freak among men. 
Still smarting from a divorce, his dreams fading amid the abrasions of his life as a political speechwriter, Ron Lithgow takes off for a rare camping trip in the mountains. 
Unluckily, he and a friend are kidnapped by aliens and have their brains transplanted in immense, rocky bodies. Only Ron escapes, and the aliens depart. 
With help from Senator Mark Douglas, his boss and father-figure, Ron is secretly taken to the National Science Agency and becomes an object of study.
It turns into a barely-acknowledged captivity. 
After much ambivalence, and manipulation by Security Officer Joe Stamberg, Ron resolves to break out. 
He is aided by Dr. Maureen Vonnegut, one of the biologists assigned to his case. They create a sensation on the streets of Washington D.C., and then on Nightline. Ron is dubbed "Concrete" and assumes a strange celebrity. 
Stamberg's forceful bargaining has led to Ron - Concrete - agreeing to a cover story: he is, supposedly, sole survivor of a government cyborg project. Furthermore, Stamberg is to be his "handler." 
But Stamberg has a secret plan. He meets with a shadowy Latin American and proposes hiring out Concrete's services, surely with a coercive threat in reserve to secure Concrete's cooperation."

Watercolour painting from the back cover of Strange Armor #1
by Paul Chadwick.

"Nausea rises within me as I recall the room they took us to. The thing with the hands was a writhing nightmare."


Concrete: Strange Armor #2, January 1998.
Artwork by Paul Chadwick.

Watercolour painting from the back cover of Strange Armor #2
by Paul Chadwick.

"I jump like a flea. I land like volcano ejecta. In fact, I have an astonishing capacity to hurt people around me."


Concrete: Strange Armor #3, March 1998.
Artwork by Paul Chadwick.

Watercolour painting from the back cover of Strange Armor #3
by Paul Chadwick.

"Imagine having people's immediate, heartfelt reaction to you to be stark terror. What had I become?"

Concrete: Strange Armor #4, April 1998.
Artwork by Paul Chadwick.

Watercolour painting from the back cover of Strange Armor #4
by Paul Chadwick.

"Two words. They made me want to turn around ... and rebury myself."

Concrete: Strange Armor #5, May 1998.
Artwork by Paul Chadwick.

Watercolour painting from the back cover of Strange Armor #5
by Paul Chadwick.

"She looked at me as if I had lost my mind. I had, of course."
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