For fans of Madman creator Mike Allred who are lucky enough to be in San Francisco, a treat. To celebrate the tenth anniversary of the publication of Red Rocket 7, Allred’s Eisner Award-nominated rock-n’-roll-space-alien-clone adventure, Mike and Laura Allred are holding a special event at Neon Monster on Saturday, October 4th. It’s the only place they’ll be signingor making a public appearanceall year.
Red Rocket 7 is a sequel of sorts to Astroesque, a 1996 movie that Allred wrote, directed, and produced about an alien, known as The Twelfth Man (played by Allred himself), who lands on Earth. While the movie has a certain The Man Who Fell to Earth feel about it, I remember it coming off as a little crude when I last saw it in 1997, no doubt due to it being Allred’s first outing as a film maker.
Red Rocket 7, however, is Allred at his storytelling and cartooning best. It follows the story of the seven clones of The Twelfth Man, and how they insinuate themselves into various aspects of popular culture throughout the twentieth century, particularly music. Allred, being a musician and an avid enthusiast for rock ‘n’ roll lore, sprinkled the miniseries with references to pop culture history (think Forrest Gump style cameos, but much, much, much hipper), and the entire narrative works as a kind of history of rock ‘n’ roll from the 1950s onward.