Vanity projects tend to suck, even when essentially ghost-written by the actor or singer's co-author. Lady Robotika is a fun traipse through '50s "Watch the Skies" science fiction.
I don't exactly know how much Jane Wiedlin wrote, but she is a songwriter, and there are some scenes that would have had to be approved by the subject. The character Jane Wiedlin gets probed and naked a lot in this book, and that's the kind of thing you would expect the star to have a say in. I can envision Wiedlin enthusiastically agreeing to all these indignities, simply because they are a staple of pop UFO culture. Also, Jane's dialogue sounds fairly authentic. I'm a huge Go-Gos fan. So, I watch their interviews and I've attended several of their concerts when they played Pittsburgh.
So let's say that Bill Morrison and Jane Wiedlin probably got together, found a mutual appreciation for kitschy sci-fi and produced a little number in which Go-Go Jane Wiedlin is abducted by classic aliens, probed and given an ultimatum: sing or die.
That doesn't explain how Jane became the swashbuckling sci-fi, whip-wielding heroine of the title, but they're getting there. Until then, Morrison and Wiedlin give readers a taste of Lady Robotika in action. She infiltrates the sadomasochistic cover queen's lair and rescues her would-be beau Jasper, who in the opener looks and sounds a lot like the tenth Doctor. This is especially true when he's strapped to a table and about to be tortured. I'd be surprised if that wasn't pure homage.
Though three artists and a unifying colorist detail the Lady Robotika premiere, the art melds fairly well, and it's all professionally rendered. The entire team illustrate a sharp likeness of our Go-Go-To-Gal. Furthermore, Bill Morrison, Tone Rodriquez, Dan Davis and Rachelle Rosenberg all have an excellent handle on the visual qualities of sci-fi pulps and the movies inspired by them.
It turns out that Lady Robotika is actually better written and illustrated than some of the so-called serious books that I've read. Jane Wiedlin's personality is all over the writing, and I don't believe Go-Gos fans or science fiction fans will come away from the book disappointed.
What did you think of this book?
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